School News: Helping Cancer Patients Keep Their Hair

Summer 2022

This article appeared as “Hair Story” in the Summer 2022 issue of Independent School.
Stanley Qu was in fourth grade at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School (AL), when his mother was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2016. Although his mom is now in remission, Qu, who graduated in May, still recalls her saying that she didn’t want chemotherapy because it would make her hair fall out, and he’s been working to help others like her since then. While she was learning about possible treatments, he learned about cold cap therapy, a technology that uses cold to minimize the amount of chemotherapy exposure to hair follicles, and he was inspired to make the $2,000 treatment, which isn’t covered by insurance, more accessible.

Qu set out to design a prototype for the cap that uses the same technology as traditional caps but for a fraction of the price, and he found a manufacturer in China to produce them using his prototype. He started a GoFundMe campaign, and in addition to his own funds from working multiple jobs and scholarship money, he raised $7,000 and made 100 caps. He also started a 501(c)(3) nonprofit Keep Your Hair, through which he donates the caps he created to local chemotherapy clinics and individual patients. Patients most often learn about the nonprofit through word of mouth and request help through his website,

Qu plans to attend Baylor University in the fall and to bring cold caps so that he can help people in Waco, Texas.

Stanley Qu with his mother, Xinhong Qu, who was the inspiration for his work

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