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Chancellor nominates all UALR Students for ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Submitted by KenDrell Collins on August 28, 2014 – 3:54 pm4 Comments

Chancellor Joel Anderson joins the ranks of celebrities and officials like Oprah, George W. Bush, and Justin Timberlake by taking the Ice Bucket Challenge beside the swimming pool in the Donaghey Student Center. Photo by KenDrell Collins.

Ice-cold water came pouring down on UALR Chancellor Joel Anderson on Wednesday August 20, after he agreed to take the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in order to raise awareness and money.

Anderson’s friend Janet Jones, who is a member of the UALR Board of Trustees, nominated him. Dozens surrounded the chancellor in the Aquatic Center as Anderson, clothed in a blue dress shirt and his maroon UALR tie, prepared to be soaked by the ice and water in the orange cooler behind him.

“It’s really nice to be here with all my friends. Never had quite a gathering like this before,” Anderson said.

“UALR is a community-engaged university and we’re always ready to respond and rise to the occasion and to assist the community and now we’re going to do it on the ALS challenge.”

While Anderson did nominate all UALR students, faculty, and staff, he specifically pointed out the Donaghey Scholars, the Chancellor’s Leadership Corps, Greek organizations, and the Staff Senate. Student Government Association President Lauren McNeill helped pour the bucket of water on the Chancellor, along with two other students.

Since the chancellor’s call to action, numerous UALR organizations have joined the movement to strike out ALS. A video of the Staff Senate’s response is available on Facebook at ‪

Action for the ALS cause at UALR is in tandem with the surge of support across the nation.  From July 29 to August 23, donations to the ALS Association reached $62.5 million, according to its press release.  The numbers for the previous year, during the same time frame, were only $2.4 million. The proceeds go toward the association’s mission to research, provide care services, impact public policy, and increase public education.

Currently, there is no cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, named in honor of the former Major League Baseball player who died of the neurodegenerative disease. ALS causes a loss in the motor neurons that facilitate muscle movement between the brain and the spinal cord. This usually leads to paralysis and eventually death for those with the disease. To learn more about ALS visit