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Alum Comes Back For Her Chance To Dance

Some people say that you can never come home again. But one dancer is proving that she’s the exception to that saying.

2011 graduate of the College of Communications and former Onward State writer Caity Rogowski is back in the Bryce Jordan Center this weekend after being selected to represent the Dance Marathon Alumni Interest Group (DMAIG) as a dancer in THON 2012. The BJC became her home while she was an undergraduate as she served as a Supply Logistics and Public Relations captain, all the while supporting her sorority, Zeta Tau Alpha.

While Rogowski is back in Happy Valley as an alumnus, she said that it really does not feel that different than if she were still a student.

“Since I just graduated, I feel like it’s the same. It’s not like I’m back after fifteen years or some outrageous time period,” Caity said. “The whole experience is more overwhelming than I thought, though. There are so many people that want to see me and so many children to play with.”

Dancers for DMAIG are selected from a lottery, provided they raise enough money, but they have to find creative ways to raise money, since they’re not allowed to take part in canning weekends. Because Rogowski and dancing partner Jaci Mayer–like all members in the DMAIG–have graduated, they’re no longer covered under the school’s insurance policy, which protects canners. Getting a late start in November, the pair sent out letters to friends and family, used social media to their advantage, and had a fundraiser at a pizza restaurant in Mayer’s hometown in New Jersey. It all added up to a staggering $14,000 all on their own–which was tops about prospective DMAIG dancing couples.

Their journey has led them to the floor of the Bryce Jordan Center. Both Caity and Jaci have stood for many THONs before, but never as a dancer. Caity seems to be enjoying her time so far, but she said she is relying heavily on her partner’s morale experience for support, as well as help with memorizing the line dance — Mayer was last year’s Line Dance coordinator — as she is still having trouble memorizing it at this early stage.

Rogo is one of my best friends, so I can’t say I didn’t write this story without bias. I’m so proud of you, bro. You were there for me last year and I’m gonna be here for you this year as well. Keep it up!

About the Author

Dan Vecellio

Dan is a graduate student in meteorology, hailing from Bradford, Pennsylvania. His interests include sports, Penn State and commons cheesesteaks. Feel free to contact me through my email or follow me on Twitter.


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