‘Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society’ said Mark Twain. Yet Trinity College Cancer Society would strongly disagree with this statement as they launch their 2009 naked students calendar.
The society has warned students not to be too surprised ‘if you catch a glimpse of college studs in the nip around the Ussher library or other unexpected spots”.
The calendar is a fundraising initiative by the society who have raised over €80,000 in the past two years for cancer research. ‘Students go starkers – all in the name of charity!’ says the society of their new calendar, which will be released on 24th November.
This latest fundraising idea will see the ‘crème de la crème of Trinity hotties’ strip off in various locations around campus. Speculations are rife that the Trinity Rugby Team will be assuming ‘compromising positions’ on the college pitch but nothing has yet been confirmed.
The Trinity Cancer Society members are far from the first people to publish a naked calendar in aid of a charity. In 2007 12 students in University College Cork posed naked for a calendar sold during their Rag Week. The students volunteered to strip off in various locations around college including the science lab, the café, a classroom and the canteen.
The photographs raised €5,000 from the 1,000 calendars bought. This influx of donations is explained by the Trinity Cancer Society’s opinion that ‘the novelty factor of seeing unsuspected people strip is a moneymaker.’
UCC’s inspiration, in turn, came from the 2003 film Calendar Girls which documented the true story of a group of middle-aged Yorkshire women who were trying to raise money for Leukemia research. Since then, naked calendars have emerged in every aspect of society from Sligo farmers to French rugby players to the Dublin Firemen Brigade.
The Trinity Cancer Society has become one of the largest societies on campus having signed up over 1,300 members. Alumni student Rory McGowan set up the Cancer Society in 2006 in order to raise cancer awareness throughout college and raise money for research. Trinity is the only university in Ireland that has a Cancer Society.
Previous events organised by the society have included members running the New York Marathon, the ‘Pink Party’ run jointly with DUBES, a Buttery table quiz and the annual Daffodil Day collections in which 40 volunteers raised €10,000 selling daffodils, pins and keyrings.
This year, however, the society has planned more elaborate events. The Charity Ball on 25 November will be the first mixed Charity Ball in Trinity, a Full Moon Thai Party will include the essential glow paint and buckets and the afformentioned naked calendar promises to ‘get your blood boiling on those nippy Winter evenings’.
According to the society, the calendar will ‘celebrate the beauty of the naked body’. Society members described it as the ‘first annual Trinity College Cancer Soceity calendar’ suggesting that this is an event students can look forward to every year.
Claire Duffy, Marie Claire Collins and Suzanne Gaffey pointed out that students who pay €6.99 for photographs of their naked peers will not only gain ‘a feast for the eyes but (will) also be supporting an extremely worthy cause’. ‘Think Calendar Girls meets the Full Monty but with an added twist, naked people you know!’