This summer, students from 180 colleges will bike across the United States for the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults’ annual fundraising trip. The 4k for Cancer fundraiser aims to create a community of support for young adults and their families who are affected by cancer.

Mechanical engineering junior Jaclyn Rainey will be among the participants in the 4,000-mile ride from Baltimore to Seattle. Rainey’s goal is to raise $10,000 for the organization.

Rainey has been involved with philanthropy work throughout high school and as a member of the Kappa Delta sorority at the UW. Through her previous work, she became passionate about cancer advocacy and now hopes to carry it into her professional career.

“Part of what I want to do with mechanical engineering is to innovate the machinery to analyze disease cells and how they interact with each other and try to find cures for them faster,” Rainey said.

She learned about the 4k for Cancer after a picture of her cycling trip from Seattle to Mexico two years ago was posted on her sorority’s Instagram. A Kappa Delta member from Idaho left a comment mentioning her own biking experience with the Ulman Cancer Fund.

It was the perfect opportunity for Rainey to combine her love of road biking and volunteering. With one day left to apply, she decided that she couldn’t let the chance pass her by.

Last month, Rainey organized a bone marrow registry drive as part of the required activities before she goes on the trip this summer. For her next assignment, she will pick a cancer to learn more about and report on what she learned.

“They want us to come in and know what we’re actually riding for and raising money for,” Rainey said.

Rainey is excited to visit Mount Rushmore during the bike ride, and also looks forward to meeting cancer patients and fellow bike riders.

Along with raising awareness for cancer, Rainey hopes that her bike ride will inspire other college students to get involved with volunteer work of their own.

“It’s good to realize that this is the time to be doing big things and trying to get involved in things that you might not have time for later,” Rainey said.

Those interested in helping Rainey meet her fundraising goal, can find more info here.

Reach reporter Keiko DeLuca at news@dailyuw.com. Twitter: @keikodeluca

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