It's going to get a little hairy around campus this month.
For the second year in a row, IUP's fraternities are taking over November and creating "Movember," much to the dismay of those who like a clean-shaven man.
During Movember, men are encouraged to "grow their mos" (mustaches) as part of the national Movember men's health awareness program, which focuses mainly on two men's cancers, testicular and prostate.
Think of it as the manly version of the famous pink ribbon for breast cancer awareness.
Tonight, the Hadley Union Building atrium will take on a very different feel, as some thirty fraternity members take part in the "shave off" to begin the Movember project.
Later this month, there will be another men's health awareness project, in which the fraternities will "pack the house" for the men's basketball game against Thiel College on November 14 at 7:30 p.m. in the Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex. Messages about men's health and these cancers will be prominently displayed and presented during the game.
Then, on November 28, the furry-faced fraternity brothers will stage a bowling tournament (open to the community) at Mohawk Lanes. This is one of several fund-raising events for Movember. Last year's event--the first at IUP--raised almost $2,000, which was donated to the national project fighting testicular and prostate cancer.
Early in December, men will go mustache-to-mustache for an event to judge the most iconic mos. According to Betsy Sarneso, director of Student Leadership and Greek Life, last year's Movember mustaches (say THAT three times fast) were grown in the style of Mario (of video game fame) and samurai warriors.
While the growing of mustaches is all in fun, these cancers are very serious. They are hard to talk about, but awareness and education are a great start.
So, the next time you see a young man with a mustache, think about what kind of important message that furry upper lip is sending. And here's another bonus: Many of these fraternity men will have an easy and very inexpensive gift for mom for the holidays: a clean-cut son!