DUBOIS – Students Evan Aravich of Brockway and Jessica Metzger of Brookville have been chosen to represent Penn State DuBois at THON this year as the designated campus dancers.
The honor will place the pair in the middle of the action at the Bryce Jordan Center at University Park during THON 2014. They’ll attempt to dance and stay on their feet for 46 consecutive hours.
THON 2014 will take place from Feb. 21-23. The largest student-run philanthropy in the world, THON raised a record $12,374,034 last year. All proceeds directly benefit the Four Diamonds Fund, an organization dedicated to battling childhood cancer.
Students from across all of Penn State work in numerous ways to raise money for the cause, holding the 46 hour dance marathon at the end of a long fundraising season. The Penn State DuBois THON Committee supports the university-wide efforts of THON by holding can drives, hair auctions and a number of other fundraising activities.
Students who are chosen as dancers for THON have worked hard for the privilege. At Penn State DuBois, a student must raise a minimum of $1,000 for the cause all on their own before even being considered for the position. In addition, they must also organize a fundraising event, participate in canning weekends and more. For those who want to support the children touched by the Four Diamonds Fund, however, the reward is well worth the work.
“I committed to being a dancer this year because standing 46 hours for the kids is the biggest way we can show each family who has a child fighting cancer that we are there for them every step of the way. Even though we may not be in their shoes, this is how we show our support to them,” Aravich said.
A junior majoring in human development and family studies, Aravich is also co-chair of the campus THON Committee, and has been involved with THON since his freshman year.
“It means so much more to me that I have this opportunity to represent Penn State DuBois at THON. I cannot describe the feeling, and how excited I am to be there with the other dancers taking a stand For the Kids.
For Metzger, a senior occupational therapy assistant major from Brookville, the cause is very personal. She said, “I became involved with THON because my family has lost a loved one to cancer. It has been 28 years since my brother has passed away but I can still see my family struggling with the pain of losing him every day. My ultimate goal is to help find a cure, so other families don’t have to experience losing a loved one to cancer, especially a child.”
Metzger participated in every canning weekend for THON this year, and organized a blood drive to benefit THON.
“I want to help put a stop to the pain and suffering these kids and their families go through every day,” she said.
For more information on THON and upcoming THON events at Penn State DuBois, contact the Office of Student Life at 814-375-4764 or StudentActivities@psu.edu.