When people ask Morgan Lievers why her hair is cut so short, she just smiles and says, “I’m rockin’ the bald!”
“People ask me if I am ill. I’m not. I just decided to shave my hair for a great cause,” Lievers said.
Lievers, 20, along with her mom, Paula, and sister MaKenzie, all of Worden, are “shavees.” Together they raised more than $580 during the St. Baldrick’s head-shaving event held at the Edwardsville Firehouse on April 13. Money raised by St. Baldrick’s volunteers goes to fund children’s cancer research.
Lievers said she knew shaving her head would be an emotional experience, but she is glad her loss will be someone else’s gain.
“At first, I wondered what I would look like bald. When I heard the buzz of the clippers, I got nervous and thought I might cry,” she said. “Then all of a sudden it hit me. I thought about how these kids with cancer, or anyone who is ill, feels when they lose their hair. I realized if they could do it, so could I. I could rock the bald!”
As an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) for Alton Memorial Hospital and volunteer firefighter for Worden Fire Protection District, Lievers is no stranger to giving back to her community.
She received her EMT certificate from Lewis and Clark Community College and recently completed the Paramedicine program with plans to enter the Fire Science program at the college.
“Morgan will make an excellent paramedic,” said Darla Long, EMT/Paramedicine coordinator at Lewis and Clark.“She is so in tune with her patients; very compassionate and caring.”
Matt Sinnokrak, a firefighter and paramedic for Edwardsville, has been organizing the Edwardsville Fire Department’s St. Baldrick’s event for several years. He met Lievers when she was a senior at Edwardsville High School and interning at the fire department.
“Morgan's involvement in this year’s event shows an amazing level of commitment to a great cause,” Sinnokrak said. “She’s helped with the event before during her internship and each year since then. She told me after last year’s event that she was going to shave her head this year, and thanks to her and other ‘shavees,’ we raised more than $20,000 this year.”
Stephanie Fernandes, associate professor of mathematics at Lewis and Clark Community College, said Lievers is a great student and a role model.
“I am so glad I got to know Morgan. She makes such a positive difference in others’ lives by donating her time and energy, and now even her hair, to help others,” Fernandes said.
St. Baldrick's, which began as a head-shaving event, continues to be the signature event of the Foundation. “Shavees” secure donations and friends and family to make donations “on their head” and in return, they attend one of thousands of volunteer-organized events around the world where they have their heads shaved in solidarity with kids fighting cancer.
Since 2000 more than 230,000 shavees—including more than 22,700 women—have shaved their heads at 5,500 events, raising critical funds for childhood cancer research.