SF State sorority’s Mr. Heartthrob pageant taps into cardiac research
Strapping male contestants from various fraternities and sports teams pumped up the crowd to raise money for the Alpha Phi sorority’s annual philanthropy event Oct. 29 at Annex 1.
The Eta Theta chapter’s annual philanthropy event is a pageant for male SF State contestants with categories such as swim wear, formal wear, talent, questions and answers, a costume category and a choreographed dance among all the contestants.
“Our sorority is committed to raising as much as possible to donate to the Alpha Phi Foundation, which contributes to cardiac research,” said Becca Scott, Alpha Phi’s Director of Philanthropy and Mr. Heartthrob event coordinator. “This cause is close to us because, heart disease is the number one killer of women in America and we believe it needs more awareness and funding.”
Including the number of tickets sold and donations at the event, Alpha Phi raised $2,000 for cardiac research at the event, according to Scott.
The participants at this year’s event opened with a dance number, set to top 40 songs. The coordinators then played a video that showed each contestant’s perspective on the importance of cardiac research for women’s health.
“Women’s heart health is important to me because, everyday, women die due to heart problems, and I can’t imagine losing my mom to this,” said Agustin Melendez, SF State junior, member of Kappa Sigma fraternity and winner of the Mr. Heartthrob title.
During the costume portion of the show, Melendez made the crowd laugh by coming out as one of the members from the music duo LMFAO as he danced to their hit song, “Sexy and I Know It.”
“Dancing is my biggest passion because it’s helped me through high school and some troubled times in my life,” Melendez said.
For the talent portion of the competition, Melendez performed an intense routine, including forms of interpretive dance, hip hop and salsa along with a few cheerleading stunts with the help of his fellow Kappa Sigma brothers.
There was a 10-minute intermission where attendees were given time to put money into the jars dedicated to each contestant. The contestant who received the most money in their jar was awarded Mr. Congeniality.
SF State junior and member of Pi Kappa Phi, Gabe Carlon, won Mr. Congeniality.
“I think women’s cardiac research is important because one out of three women die from heart disease and we should raise awareness,” Carlon, 20, said.
SF State senior and member of Alpha Phi sorority, Morgan Moreno, said she was concerned about how little awareness there is about women’s cardiac health in America.
“There needs to be more awareness around the world about women’s heart health,” Moreno said. “It’s the No. 1 killer for women and it’s something that women never really take into consideration, which is scary.”
Alpha Phi officially adopted Cardiac Care as a priority in 1946, which became Alpha Phi Foundation’s philanthropic priority when it was founded in 1956, according to Becca Scott, the director of philanthropy of Alpha Phi and co-coordinator of the event.
The foundation supports programs and research that study heart disease in women – specifically its symptoms, its treatment and its prevention.
“Through its annual Heart to Heart Grant, the Foundation helps fund research and educational programs that support the improvement of women’s heart health,” said Christian Hawkins, the event co-host and member of Alpha Phi. “Through the support of these initiatives, Alpha Phi Foundation is helping millions of people live longer, richer lives.”