QuinniPeople: Nathan Orsini


Nicole Kessler

Relay for life; a day to celebrate, remember, and fight back. On Sept. 11 Quinnipiac University students relayed for Nathan Orsini.

“ I was enjoying my sophomore year here at the great QU and on my 20 birthday, Nov. 11. I received on of the most unimaginable news the diagnosis of DIPG,” he said. “ It’s a Diffused Intrinsic Pontine Glioma. Its inoperable incurable brain cancer.”

Orsini, a junior communications student from Belvidere, NJ, isn’t letting his diagnosis defeat his spirit.

“ I am doing well right now. I’ve been better obviously but I am working through it feeling good today though. It was nice to come here, see friends, and be back on campus,” he said.

He says his positive outlook on life comes from the support of the community, his friends, and family.

“ I can’t tell you how nice it was to come home from Philly everyday and have a hot meal for us by a friend. It never failed to put a smile on my face,” he said. “ When I received cards from friends and family from people like you at Quinnipiac it just felt great to know you were there for me.”

With the help from everyone in the community over 500 students came to Relay for Life, raising a total of $31,000 for the American Cancer Society.

One of Nathan’s friends Chris Omara said, “ I came out here just to support Nathan.”

It was that support as well as that of Orsini’s own team, “ Nathan’s Neuro Ninjas” that helped them raise $4,270; the most out of any of the 60 participating teams. His family, friends, and members of the Quinnipiac honors program all made up the team.

“I hope people get out of the event that it’s nice to build a sense of community where everyone is there for each other working towards a common goal,” he said.

The people around Orsini are more than just his support system they admire how he keeps a positive outlook on life.

Dan and Christa Orsini, Nathan’s parents, think he is incredible and strong.

“This whole thing is showing another side to how open he can be fighting something so horrible,” he said. “ He has a lot of inner strength,” she said. “ He has always been a good guy but he has been tested and certainly has a lot of strength.”

Orsini’s good friend, Syed Hashaum, a junior, describes him as an overall amazing person.

“ When I see him and I see everything that has happened to him and he is still willing to get up every single morning and do what he has to do and fight through it all, there’s no excuse I can ever make in my life not to do anything,” he said.

Those around Orsini have nothing but good things to say about his mindset and attitude.

“ It is important to stay positive during the journey,” he said.

Orsini’s diagnosis has not over shadowed his good humor either.

“I wish I can go in the bounce house. I may have my dad throw me in in the end,” he said.

Orsini says you really don’t know how much you take for granted in life until you are faced with something like this.

“ This Relay for life is to support the fight against cancer. Hopefully we will see everyone celebrate more birthdays,” said Orsini. “ My next birthday is two months from today and I plan on being there for my first drink.”

For that he has some advice for everyone.

“ Progress is made everyday even though life gives us hurdles we keep huddling along. We need to keep fighting lets. So lets walk to continue the fight, raise some money, and have some fun,” he said.