Jun 082015
Troubling Numbers
  • Each year globally, about 14 million people learn they have cancer, and 8 million die.
  • In the United States an estimated 1.7 million new cases of cancer will emerge and nearly 585,000 people will die from the disease in the year 2015.
  • 20.1 million people living in this country have been diagnosed with some form of cancer.
  • Nearly 958,000 Americans are battling blood cancers today including leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma.

Please Donate Now

I am raising funds for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) as a participant in their Team In Training program, and I’m asking you to help by making a donation to my fundraising campaign. Click the button below now to donate, or read on first to learn why this is so important to me. Thanks.

My Humble Request of You

My Reason. My Story.

We all have a story of cancer. It’s touched every one of our lives without a doubt. Many of my closest family have died due to some form of cancer. My mother-in-law was cut down at the young age of 55 in less than six months time from an aggressive brain tumor. She went from line dancing and laughing one day to brain cancer the next—thrust into a losing battle, marked by surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and suffering. It was absolutely horrible—seeing her suffer, seeing my wife suffer as she watched her mother fight one day after the next until she couldn’t any longer. My father-in-law suffered more slowly over several years from the prostate cancer that eventually took his life. I watched him transform from a jovial, red-cheeked, portly fellow who loved to indulge in the many pleasures of life into an emaciated, ashen man with desperation in his eyes.

More recently, both of my own parents suffered and died within five months of one another from two different forms of cancer—my mother from breast cancer and my father from lung cancer. In both cases, the life was sucked from their bodies—slowly at first and then with increasing and relentless speed until there was nothing left. Well, we were left—with memories, pain, and the heart-breaking burden of trying to explain to my 8-year-old son why he would never see his grandma and grandpa again.

My story is not unique. I know this. My oldest friend recently lost his mother to lymphoma. She fought for years—successfully for a while, moving into remission, before it returned suddenly and claimed her life. I can see my friend’s pain now, as he tries to sort through feelings of confusion, loss, grief, and rage with his young family—with his two young children.

Cancer in all forms sucks. It sucks the life from people and hope from far too many families. Nobody should have to suffer this way, especially when a cure is possible. We should not have to see our loved ones suffer. Our mothers and fathers, our brothers and sisters, our spouses, our children, our dear friends—nobody should suffer at the hands of this terrible disease, and yet it afflicts us all. You know someone who has suffered from this disease, who may now be suffering. 20.1 million people in this country have been diagnosed with some form of cancer. This is unacceptable. What’s worse is that research suggests that one-third of all cancer deaths can be prevented if the necessary services and technologies are made available.

There is hope. While it’s true that money can’t buy everything, it can get us closer to a cure for cancer. That’s why when a friend asked me to join him in running this year’s Chicago Half Marathon to raise funds for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) as a participant in their Team In Training program, I said yes. I can do a small part in curing this disease. My goal is to raise $1,500 to help stamp out blood cancers. I am asking you now to please help me meet this fundraising goal, so together we can find a cure to blood cancers and take a step toward ridding the world of all cancers.

Please use the donate button in this e-mail to donate online quickly. You can also learn more about my progress by visiting my fundraising page. You will receive a confirmation of your donation by e-mail, and I will be notified as soon as you make your donation. Each donation helps accelerate finding a cure for leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma.

On behalf of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, thank you very much for your support. I greatly appreciate your generosity.

Thank you,

Michael McGuire

P.S. I would appreciate it if you would forward this e-mail to as many people as you can to encourage them to donate as well. Thanks again.

Help to Welcome a Refugee Family

 Uncategorized  Comments Off on Help to Welcome a Refugee Family
Feb 112015

event info

Run for Your Life
An interactive, sensory refugee simulation designed by the UNHCR.

Tuesday, March 24 · 12:30 – 1:45

Moraine Valley, G-bldg/Gym
9000 College Pkwy
Palos Hills, IL 60465

For More Info
For more information, contact Mike McGuire at 708.974.5770 or by sending an e-mail

According to the latest statistics from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), there are approximately 15.4 million refugees in the world. These are people who are forced to flee their homes and cannot return because they will be persecuted and possibly killed based on their religion, race, nationality, political opinion or membership in a particular social group. According to the Department of State, the United States has resettled at least 3 million refugees since 1975. An average of 2,000 refugees per year come to Illinois and many to the Chicago area.

“Run-for-Your-Life” Experience

Join us for a refugee simulation that was created by the UNHCR. Participants will role play scenarios faced by current refugees around the world. This interactive, sensory learning activity will be led by students from Mike McGuire’s Composition II class, which uses service learning as way of researching community and global issues. All are welcome, but the event is designed for more mature participants (age 14+). The students are also collecting needed items to set up an apartment in cooperation with Exodus World Service to welcome a refugee family to Chicago. We encourage you to bring one or more of the needed items. The list of needed items is below. For more information contact Mike McGuire.

Help a Family Feel at Home

You can help a displaced family by joining us in collecting needed items to help set up an apartment for them and welcome them to America. If you can donate an item or more from the list below, please sign up. Scroll down on the list, as there are many items. Also note that items do NOT need to be brand new. Gently used items are okay, too. Every donation makes a difference.

Donation Sign-Up Sheet
Sign-up for for one or more items below. Once you sign-up, we will send you additional information about where you can drop off the item(s) you will be contributing. Thanks so much!

Helping to Welcome a Refugee Family

Event Chairs: Michael McGuire, Luis Arias, Megan Schmidt, Pedro Calderon and Sam Benck

All spots have been filled.

Needed Item   Name of Donor
Set of Mixing Bowls    #1: Carol H.
Set of Baking Pans    #1: Elizabeth M.
Set of Pots and Pans    #1: Erika D.
Set of Cooking Utensils    #1: Nicolette V.
Set of Sharp Knives    #1: Cynthia R.
Measuring Cups and Spoons    #1: Mariah S.
Med/Large Cutting Board    #1: Laila H.
Manual Can Opener    #1: Panshula G.
3 Kitchen Towels    #1: Christine M.
3 Dishcolthes    #1: Layalee B.
Faltware for 8    #1: Toni S.
Dishes for 8    #1: Nelly R.
8 Drinking Glasses    #1: Jessica C.
1 Bottle of Dish Detergent    #1: Stephenie P.
2 O-Cello Type Sponges    #1: Alyssa C.
Kitchen Trash Can and Bags    #1: Shavonne L.
1 Roll of Aluminum Foil    #1: Lara A.
1 Roll of Plastic Wrap    #1: Mia J.
2 Rolls of Paper Towels    #1: Meg D.
Queen-Sized Blanket    #1: Kevin N.
Twin-Sized Blanket    #1: Jessica S.
#2: Paulina K.
#3: Liliana M.
Queen-Sized Sheet Set    #1: Kathy F.
Twin-Sized Sheet Set    #1: Velma S.
#2: Claudia V.
#3: Elizabeth M.
Bed Pillows    #1: Diem D.
#2: Ngai Yu L.
#3: Stephanie D.
#4: Muhammad A.
Clock Radio with Alarm    #1: Laila H.
Towel Set (bath towel, hand towel, and washcloth)    #1: Cathi P.
#2: Elizabeth M.
#3: Alexis S.
#4: keisha e.
2 Bottles of Shampoo    #1: Manal K.
4 Bars of Soap    #1: Manal K.
4 Tooth Brushes    #1: Manal K.
2 Tubes of Toothpaste    #1: Manal K.
Box of Feminine Supplies    #1: Manal K.
15 Disposable Razors    #1: Manal K.
4 Rolls of Toilet Paper    #1: Stephenie P.
Bottle of Hand Lotion    #1: Stephenie P.
2 Boxes of Kleenex    #1: Cathi P.
Small Trash Basket    #1: Mariah S.
Bottle of Cleaning Spary    #1: Laila H.
Can of Scouring Powder    #1: Elizabeth M.
Broom    #1: Noor J.
Dustpan    #1: Jessica S.
Plastic Laundry Basket    #1: Mariah S.
Pad of Paper    #1: Kim R.
Box of Envelopes    #1: Kim R.
5 Pencils/Pens    #1: Mariah S.
Book of Stamps    #1: Abby M.
Electric Fan    #1: Adaliz B.
Calendar    #1: Carol H.
Small Toolkit    #1: Mandoza E.
2 Light Bulbs    #1: Stephenie P.
5 lbs of Sugar    #1: Meg D.
10 lbs of Flour    #1: Rita K.
5 lbs of Onions    #1: Lynn T.
10 lbs of Potatoes    #1: Lynn T.
Gallon of Cooking Oil    #1: Kathy F.
5 lbs of Rice    #1: Kathy F.
Box of Teabags    #1: Sobia R.
Box of Salt    #1: Noor J.
Can of Black Pepper    #1: Layalee B.
Jar of Instant Coffee    #1: Muhammad T.
Case of Pop    #1: Travaughn C.

May 022013
Moraine Valley Professor Kevin Navratil invited students from his International Relations course to participate in the Act Out 2013 event this year by compiling a playlist of seventeen videos featuring non-governmental organizations (NGOs) working around the globe. Featured organizations included Charity Water, the International Committee of the Red Cross, Doctors without Borders, Green Peace, Amnesty International, Democracy at Work, Save the Children, Kiva, Human Rights Watch, and others. It played throughout the event and was very well received. Thanks Kevin and thanks to all your students for their hard work in bringing the essential work of these worthy organizations.

If you missed this amazing bit of video compilation, you can see it here. Enjoy.

Jan 132013

Two years ago I found myself at low place in my career. I had been teaching for about a decade, and became accustomed to students who by and large lacked motivation and interest; they never got past their own inertia and generally had an attitude of indifference that sucked the life right from me. I remember joking with my office mates, saying, “This is the semester I have finally lost faith in humanity.” I was joking, but truly I felt demoralized in a way I had never felt before in my teaching career. It was a hard semester.

I took my lessons learned and knew it was time for a real change. That is how I came to Act Out Now–an education through action project. Students always asked: “When am I going to use this stuff?” “How is this relevant to my life?” “What difference does any of this make?” Now, with a new outlook on what I am doing in my own life and career, I can tell students that they will use it right now, that it’s immediately relevant to their lives and to the lives of so many others, and the difference is of immeasurable importance. This is Act Out Now: Education through Action.