Fall 2012

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Circus for the Kids

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Tell us what you think. E-mail comments or questions to the editors at letters@northwestern.edu.

Ever wonder about those strange designations we use throughout Northwestern to identify alumni of the various schools of the University? See the complete list.

Cirque du NU aims to entertain families at Chicago’s Ronald McDonald House.

When he was 5, Taylor Alvaro lived at a Ronald McDonald House in California while his brother underwent two open-heart surgeries for pulmonary atresia, a severe heart disorder.

“It’s a very stressful atmosphere,” said Alvaro, a rising sophomore from Cincinnati who launched Cirque du NU, a new circus and service student group, when he heard that a larger new Ronald McDonald House was going to open in Chicago. “The purpose of our group is to provide entertainment to the families staying there and alleviate some of the stress.”

With no circus talent required to join, the group has about 25 members, several of whom practice each week in Elder Hall. They focus on juggling and making balloon animals, and a few students have unicycle and stilts skills.

“I am most excited that we have raised campus awareness,” said Alvaro, who spends his summers working for a mini-traveling circus. “It’s a good group of kids who are dedicated to making an impact for the Ronald McDonald House.”