WUFT News

UF President Participates in ALS ‘Ice Bucket Challenge’

By on August 25th, 2014

Dumping a bright orange Gatorade cooler over a coach’s head is common for athletes after a game or tournament. On Monday, two University of Florida athletes, football quarterback Jeff Driskel and volleyball player Simone Antwi, dumped a bucket of ice water onto UF President Bernie Machen.

University of Florida President Bernie Machen is doused with ice water for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. Machen was nominated to participate in the nationwide campaign by Kéran Billaud, a Ph.D. student at UF.

Photo by Virgina Hamrick / WUFT News

University of Florida President Bernie Machen is doused with ice water for the ALS "Ice Bucket Challenge." Machen was nominated to participate in the nationwide campaign by Kéran Billaud, a Ph.D. student at UF.

After several nominations from students and his grandchildren, Machen took on the “Ice Bucket Challenge” to raise money and awareness for ALS, or Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Machen explained ALS is one of the worst diseases still without a cure, and this challenge could raise awareness of the illness.

“This is a lot of fun, but there is something good behind it,” Machen said. “This is social media used the right way.”

In fact, social media introduced one of the students who nominated Machen to ALS.

UF Ph.D. student Kéran Billaud accepted the challenge from his niece in Alaska. Billaud admits he did not know much about ALS before the ice bucket campaign. He took on the challenge, hoping more social media users would learn about the illness, and nominated Machen to increase support.

“I told myself if you’re going to advance a cause,” Billaud said,  “you want to challenge people who are really well known.”

Billaud added students may participate after watching the video, and Machen agreed.

“I hope people will say, ‘You know, if this old guy can do it, I can do something about it as well,’” Machen said while drenched.

President Machen looked shocked after being doused with ice water. "Oh god," he exclaimed immediately after. "That is real cold water, even in sunny and hot Florida."

Photo by Virginia Hamrick / WUFT News

President Machen looked shocked after being doused with ice water. "Oh god," he exclaimed immediately after. "That is real cold water, even in sunny and hot Florida."

Machen nominated all YouTube viewers to accept the challenge as well as Cory Yeffet, president of UF Student Government, and Dave Kratzer, vice president of the UF Division of Student Affairs.


This entry was posted in Local, University of Florida and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
  • Jessica

    I am glad they picked him as the president of my school. He seems like he is down to earth and nice.

 

More Stories in Local

Rozie Smith, a volunteer with Food4Kids Backpack program works together with fellow volunteer, Brantley Mason, to put together a canned food box at the organization’s warehouse as the holiday season approaches

Local Organization Fills Christmas Spirit “One Belly At A Time”

Food4Kids Backpack Program of North Florida Inc., is furthering its year-round fight against food insecurity for youth by providing food during the winter holidays to students who mainly rely on meals during school hours.


The drop box for letters to Santa stands at the left entrance of the Gainesville Post Office. Mail handlers check the drop box for submissions four to five times a day.

Operation Santa Seeks Benefactors

Gainesville Post Office participates in the Santa Operation program for the first time. The program started receiving letters from across the country starting Dec. 2, and it will match the benefactors until Monday.


Alachua County migrant children receive gifts from the Angel Tree charity project last Christmas. 

Photo courtesy of Alachua County Multi-County Migrant Education program.

Angel Tree Shines Light On Migrant Families

The Angel Tree Charity Project helps make sure struggling migrant families have a normal Christmas. Hundreds of families are helped with the charity project.


Newnans Lake, shown here near 7400 E. University Ave., in Gainesville, Fla.

Alachua County Receives Florida’s 36th State Forest

The 1,000-plus acres of diverse land west of Newnans Lake in Gainesville will provide bicycle and hiking trails for the public in spring 2015.


The Rerun team prepares 233 shoes to ship to Native American reservations in South Dakota later in December.

Old Shoes Find New Life Thanks to Oak Hall

“We started off as a drop off spot where people could bring old shoes when they bought a new pair, or bring back a defective pair,” Carillo said. “It grew more and more through word of mouth, and now people know to bring their shoes to us.”


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Day Sponsorship Payments
Underwriting Payments