New York, November 28, 2014—Earlier this month, Columbia Law School student Maria C. Salame ’16—a former Morgan Stanley analyst—ran the New York City Marathon for the first time in just over 4 hours and 15 minutes.
Columbia Law School Professor Robert J. Jackson Jr. Helped Student Maria Salame '16 Raise Money For Her Charity Marathon Run by Teaching in a Pair of Pajamas
But she wouldn’t have been able to compete without help from her classmates and a very unusual incentive from Professor Robert J. Jackson Jr.
Maria, a member of the student group “Running from the Law,” chose to gain guaranteed entry to the marathon by raising $3,500 for cancer research as a “Fred’s Team” runner. When her fundraising needed a boost, she approached Jackson, a former Treasury Department official who often lectures about the role of incentives in finance. Jackson added an incentive for his students to support Salame’s efforts; he offered to dress down for a class—from his normal three-piece suit to a pair of pajamas—if the students raised the additional $1,000 Maria needed.
The "Jackson in Jammies" fundraiser was a huge success, bringing in $1,700 donations from students, faculty, and others in the Columbia Law School community.
After the students delivered, Jackson did too: He took off a white bathrobe during his lecture to reveal a pair of silk “suit pajamas.”