Charity Fundraisers

Alpha Phi Omega runs one major charity fundraiser every year, the Institute “Big Screw” contest. It is a week-long event, during which candidates compete by having monetary donations given on their behalf at a booth in Lobby 10. Each candidate chooses a charity, and the charity of the candidate who raises the most money during the week receives the total amount raised during the week.

Institute “Big Screw”

2010 Total: $3,893.73 to Partners in Health

Professor Charity Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Total
Course 20 Team Progeria Foundation and Jimmy Fund 6245 1055 2619 5110 6658 21687
Leeb Pine Street Inn 3364 447 1871 64811 69316 139809
Cravalho Partners in Health 1472 2826 3883 102915 56308 167504
Leonard/Hughey Doctors Without Borders 1400 568 216 599 2633 5416
Carter Poverty Solutions International 1100 685 1100 426 200 3511
Monroe Unicef 939 2556 800 624 5100 10019
Goyal Teach For America 700 200 307 5979 3273 10459
Goemans A-T Childrens Project 614 111 252 2715 48 3740
Sadoway Transition House 311 118 201 651 200 1481
Wallace The Food Project 262 204 605 842 125 2038
Miller HomeStart 170 344 1181 1065 469 3229
Unified Team Cradles to Crayons 601 2729 340 576 0 4246
2.005 Team Big Sister Association of Greater Boston 75 441 251 4355 100 5222
Madden Span, Inc 53 214 1277 1348 3216 6108
Shao-Horn Transition House 13 395 607 11 2430 3456
Cummins 0 0 406 561 481 1448
Total   17319 12993 15916 192588 150557 389373

The Institute Screw Contest, popularly referred to as “Big Screw,” takes place during the spring term. MIT faculty and staff may run in this contest. Most Big Screw candidates are suggested by others, usually students. Although the trophy — a four foot, left-handed aluminum wood screw — is often awarded to the candidate the students feel have screwed them over the most, some candidates have run (and even won!) because they frequently deal with mechanical screws.

The Institute Screw contest is an event which is unique to MIT. It began as a mirror to the Ugliest Manifestation on Campus (no longer running), but quickly evolved into an event even more anticipated than UMOC. Alumni pass down stories of professors campaigning — one professor tried to win by giving a lecture in French, despite the fact that he was teaching a math class!

If you would like more information, please contact big-screw@mit.edu.

Past Winners and Charities

Year Winner Charity
2009 Dan Frey United Cerebral Palsy Association
2008 James Bredt Environmental Working Group
2007 Maureen Lynch Make A Wish Foundation
2006 John Brisson J.G. Brisson, Sr. Scholarship at NVRHSOT
2005 Paul Hill International Relief Coalition
2004 Charles Vest Make a Wish Foundation
2003 George Verghese Doctors without Borders
2002 Steven Leeb Pine Street Inn
2001 Hale Bradt MIT Community Service Fund
2000 Neil H. Dorow Shepherd Center, Josiah Seale Fund
1999 Carl D. Martland Audobon Society
1998 C. Michael Mohr Greater Boston Food Bank
1997 Neal H. Dorow MIT Community Service Fund
1996 Wesley L. Harris (Unified) American Heart Association
1995 Matthew H. Braun Boston Food Bank
1994 Robert D. Logcher Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts
1993 Eliot S. Levitt AIDS Action of Massachusetts
1992 (not held)
1991 Pascal R. Chesnais
1989 Alan Brody
1985 Shirley M. McBay Aid for Ethiopia fund
1978 Luise Keohane American Cancer Society
1976 Judith Bostock
1975 Tom Hill
1971 Ken Browning
1970 Don Garvett’s Deja Vu
1969 Al Tuna
1968 Cynthia Helgerson
1967 Arthur Mattuck

Ugliest Manifestation on Campus (no longer running)

The Ugliest Manifestation on Campus contest, more familiarly known as UMOC, used to take place during the fall term, usually shortly before Halloween. Our chapter no longer runs UMOC. MIT students were able to run for this title, although many students have opted to run on behalf of particularly ugly manifestations, such as Transparent Horizons (otherwise known as The Big Black Scrap Heap) or the Random Hall Milk (7 years old and aging daily). Students running as themselves often have interesting platforms; the 1999 winner ran on the platform that she was “too cute to live”.

UMOC was not originally an MIT contest; the idea came from other APO chapters across the country. However, the MIT chapter was one of the few chapters who still successfully ran this contest. UMOC started at MIT as the Ugliest Man on Campus contest, and remained that way for many years. After a rather stunning woman ran one year — and won! — on the platform that she made a rather ugly man, the contest’s name was changed to its current incarnation.