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Revving the engine of the THON fundraising machine; canning weekends

Pie Your professor
Now that is taking one for the team at the "Pie Your Professor" THON fundraiser.
1/17/2012 —


Jan. 18 - "
Pie Your Professor”
Jan. 20-22 - Canning Weekend
Community Market Penn Hills, Community Market Natrona Heights, Community Market Fox Chapel,
Community Market Lower Burrell, Shop 'n Save Route 286, Wal-Mart Natrona Heights

Feb. 10-12 - Canning Weekend
Feb. 16 - "Thon Dancers Send-off," Potluck Dinner
Feb. 17-19 - THON,  Penn State Interfraternity Council/ Panhellenic Dance Marathon

With less than a month before the super bowl of fundraising events, the engine of the Penn State New Kensington fundraising machine is revving up with a series of activities that power THON, aka the Penn State Interfraternity Council/ Panhellenic Dance Marathon.

The campus THON committee, headed by Lauren Richards, is sponsoring a series of events in January and February to benefit the University-wide event that benefits the Four Diamonds Fund at the Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital, whose goal is to fight childhood cancer. THON culminates at Penn State University Park with a 46-hour, no sitting, no sleeping marathon from Feb. 17-19. Over the next four weeks, campus students will be canning outside various businesses in the region to raise money for what is believed to be the largest student-run philanthropy in the world.

Lauren Richards, an information sciences and technology major, has set a campus goal of $60,000, the most ambitious in campus history. Last year, students set a goal of $40,000 and shattered the campus record by raising $52,392, eclipsing the previous record of $23,000 set in 2010. Since 2002, the campus has collected more than $162,000 for the charity.

The fundraising cycle cranked up during the fall semester with two canning weekends, a zumba night and a spaghetti dinner. The spring semester opens with a “Pie Your Professor” event and continues with two more canning weekends, Jan. 20-22 (Community Market Penn Hills, Community Market Natrona Heights, Community Market Fox Chapel, Community Market Lower Burrell, Shop 'n Save Route 286, Wal-Mart Natrona Heights) and Feb. 10-12. The Thon dancers send-off, a potluck dinner, is set for 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 16, in the Conference Center.

In addition to fundraising, the committee is tasked to choose four students who will represent the campus as dancers at the University Park event. Dancers are nominated by the members of the campus community, and the nominees are winnowed by meeting certain eligibility requirements, including the extent of their participation in Thon events. Seven students made it through the nominating process and will be interviewed Jan. 19, and the winning dancers will be announced the following week. The number of dancers going to University Park from each campus is based on the amount of money raised by the campus the previous year. The selection of campus dancers will be based on canning hours, meetings attended, and raising at least $1,000 apiece.

Non-dancers can revel in the spirit of philanthropy by purchasing apparel or making gifts online. T-shirts emblazoned with “PSNK THON” are available through Lauren Blum, student life coordinator, 724-334-6063 or ldb14@psu.edu via email. Donations can be made by visiting https://secure.imodules.com/s/1218/thon/thon.aspx?sid=1218&gid=1&pgid=671&cid=2344 online. Please be sure to designate the New Kensington campus, #75, for the credit.

For more on campus Thon, contact Lauren Richards, ler5128@psu.edu or Nicki Thoma, nat5066@psu.edu via email.

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