George Mason University

Pioneering Research

Mason is...Driven to Serve

Students prepare for the Ulman Cancer Fund 4K for Cancer charity ride and run.

Seniors Jennifer Allen and Ryan Allen, who are not related, will raise money and cancer awareness this summer by running and biking across the country for the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults.

Riding and Running for a Reason

When Ryan Allen takes off this summer on his 4,000-mile, cross-country bike ride, he’ll write his mother’s name on his leg as a tribute.

Ryan will ride to benefit the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults. But after Ryan’s mom, Linda, had what she described as a cancer “scare,” the ride for the George Mason University senior became personal.

“It got a lot more important to me,” said the integrative studies major who is concentrating on advertising.

Ryan will be part of a team of 20 to 30 riders biking west 70 days from Baltimore to San Diego.

“I’m just focusing on what the ride will mean, the money it will raise, and the lives that will be affected by it.”

Ryan Allen

“It’s symbolic of what cancer patients go through,” she said. “They don’t have that choice whether to deal with pain or not, so I’m looking forward to the struggle. It’s a way to show what they go through a little bit.”

Now in its 15th year, the 4K for Cancer hopes to bring in $1 million in donations to support young adults affected by cancer, starting with the $4,500 each participant is required to raise. There are six teams of 20 to 30 participants—two teams run; four bike.

Ryan said his best friend while growing up beat testicular cancer, another reason his ride will resonate.