The Student News Site of East Islip High School

The Broadcaster

The Student News Site of East Islip High School

The Broadcaster

The Student News Site of East Islip High School

The Broadcaster

Movember: The Most Manly Time of the Year

“Superman, Captain America… That’s who we’re supposed to be. We’re supposed to be, you know, heroes.” – Mr. Falkman
Teachers Mr. Falkman, Mr. O’Neill, Mr. Augello, and Mr. Lackner (left to right) representing the East Islip High School Movember Team.

With Halloween creeping around the corner, the mid-autumn blitz of academic and athletic activity announcements reached an overwhelming pinnacle. Sports teams, academic teams, alliance clubs, and all sorts of extracurriculars dominated the morning announcements. However, there was one invitation that trumped them all: Mr. Falkman and the Key Club’s Movember campaign.

While many students view the Movember movement as an amusing, month-long competition of who can grow the most mustache, there is a lot more to be derived from the event.

The Meaning of Movember

In 2003, what started out as a challenge between Australian friends Travis Garone and Luke Slattery to grow mustaches has transformed into an international movement with over 6 million supporters. Their goal? To shine a positive light on men’s health. While at first their cause was dedicated to physical health issues, such as cancers, the Movember foundation eventually branched out into men’s mental health as well. The foundation ensures that all money raised by participating ‘Mo Bros’ funds research and remedies for men’s health issues.

Any sign of ‘I need help’ is seen as a weakness. And there are times when men need to look past that point and ultimately think about taking care of themselves.

— Mr. Falkman

The Movember website lists important information regarding men’s health that may be alarming to those unaware of the facts. According to their website, an average of 1 man dies every minute by suicide, globally. More shocking is the fact that, statistically, 4 in 5 suicides in the United States are committed by men. Unfortunately, most men are unable to recognize the necessity of mental health before it is too late. In order to combat these disheartening statistics, Movember donates their funds to organizations that have methods of suicide prevention, early intervention, and health promotion.

Physically, the main detriments to men’s health that Movember aims to fight are testicular and prostate cancer.  On the global scale, more than 1.4 million men (1 in 8 men in the US) are diagnosed with prostate cancer whereas testicular cancer is known to be the most common cancer found in younger men. In lieu of these illnesses, Movember is making it their priority to teach men to pursue check-ups with their doctors for prevention. For those that are passed the prevention stage, Movember is working towards convincing governments to provide affordable treatment and facilitating collaborations between leading biologists to boost research.

Movember in the East Islip Community

Determined to bring awareness to the organization’s work, East Islip High School’s resident Mo Bro, Mr. Falkman felt it necessary to incorporate a Movember fundraiser into the EIHS Key Club, for which he has been the advisor for 18 years. According to Mr Falkman, the Key Club has made various efforts to promote the Movember movement such as “chocolate mustaches, cookies with mustaches on them, coloring sheets. . .  [and] draw a mustache on the principal.”

So, in 2010, Mr. Falkman established the East Islip High School Movember Team. Although Mr. Falkman himself organized the group, he was not the only teacher to volunteer for the cause. In the past “teachers such as Mr. Lavey, Mr. Veit, [and] Mr. Coulton” donated their upper lip to the cause. For the 2023 EIHS Movember group,  Mr. Augello, Mr. O’Neill, Mr. Lackner, and Mr. Falkman all participated. Together, the team raised $859! When totaled altogether, the East Islip High School Movember Team has raised over $4,500 in the past thirteen years. Hopefully, this value will continue to increase itself over the years.

The future of the East Islip High School Movember Team looks bright. Mr. Falkman has no intentions of letting up his team yet, and hopes to garner as much awareness for the Movember foundation as possible. “Do I encourage them to participate? Absolutely. But again, the idea is not necessarily to have a lot of members, but bring awareness to it.”

So, if you still have not had enough mustache mayhem and want see more, check out this clip from the East Islip High School Movember feature on News 12:


About the Contributor
Jack Wodicka
Jack Wodicka, Staff Writer
Jack Wodicka is a senior at East Islip High School who wish he had joined The Broadcaster sooner! Jack is a huge geek and he loves talking movies, books, and television. His favorite book is Dune by Frank Herbert. Shockingly, his favorite film is Denis Villenueve's very faithful adaptation of Dune. Through his writing, he hopes to extend his love for storytelling to a wider audience. Jack aspires to become an author himself, while also teaching High School English.