UNIVERSITY PARK . — Two years ago, graduate students Laura March and Stuart Shapiro wanted to fill Beaver Stadium with blue shirts to raise awareness of child abuse. This Saturday’s match versus Kent State will mark Penn State’s third annual “Blue Out” game, and senior Victoria Smith has taken the torch to keep the tradition alive.
Smith is director of the One Heart Campaign, a student group centered around educating people on child sexual abuse prevention. The “Blue Out” is the club’s marquee event for the fall and has raised about $120,000 to date. Proceeds benefit the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape’s Vision of Hope fund, which is directly aimed at helping children.
“We are a group of students that really want to do something,” Smith said. “We want the Blue Out to be a tradition at Penn State — and we can continue to make a difference.”
Official Blue Out shirts are available at the Penn State Bookstore, trailers outside Beaver Stadium, and the Family Clothesline in downtown State College. All proceeds from the shirts benefit PCAR.
Students will be canning outside the gates of Beaver Stadium starting two hours before kickoff. Smith said there is room for more students to get involved, and those who help out before the game will get a free ticket. Visit the Blue Out volunteer page to sign up.
Student organizers and PCAR representatives will also be at a table along Curtin Road before the game to share information and resources on child sexual abuse prevention.
For more information on the Blue Out or the One Heart Campaign, visit the group’s Facebook page.