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THON Director Thursday: Meet Entertainment Director Kyle Azzara

Name: Kyle Azzara

Committee: Entertainment

Major: Immunology and Infectious Disease

Past THON Experience:

I was on Morale my freshman and sophomore years, was a DR Captain my junior year, an Entertainment Captain my senior year, and now I’m the Entertainment Director for THON 2017.

Name an interesting, weird, or quirky fact about yourself:

An ostrich bit me when I was on a trip in Ghana.

What made you want to apply for the Entertainment Director position for THON 2017?

I saw areas for THON to improve and realized I could impact the organization in a positive way from an Executive Committee level. I had ideas and a desire to do more, so I applied and am happy I have the chance to put those ideas into action this year to improve THON as an organization and help the families we serve.

What are your responsibilities as the Entertainment Director?

As Director, a lot of my role is facilitating communication among my Captains and between different THON Committees. Allowing the ENT Captains to achieve their goals in their positions is extremely important to me, and something I work hard to achieve.   Entertainment Captains DJ and coordinate every stage performer, floor performer and band to ensure the highest level of entertainment and production value during THON Weekend and at events throughout the year. Other responsibilities include working the cameras and video displays and organizing the Pre-THON and Pep Rally shows. We are also responsible for engaging the crowd and facilitating the timelines during major events as well as setting up and tearing down the stage, lighting, and sound equipment for THON Weekend.

What do you want to implement in your position this year that’s unique and differs from years past?

The Entertainment Committee is focused now more than ever on engaging the crowd both during THON Weekend and at other events throughout the year. Our Committee Members are committed to finding new and fun ways to keep the crowd involved and engaged. These committees have doubled in size this year after a very successful first year in action during THON 2016. We are also looking for more ways for all areas of Entertainment to be involved with events throughout the years and innovate.

What makes the Entertainment Committee so cool, fun, and/or important?

The Entertainment Committee provides an engaging and fun atmosphere at THON events and THON Weekend. These efforts are aimed at providing moments for families battling childhood cancer to feel the happiness and support from the THON Community as we pursue a cure, For the Kids. That’s pretty cool to me!

What are the overall goals you hope to reach with your committee for THON 2017?

My main goal is for my committee and I to make a difference in the lives of the Four Diamonds Families. Whether that’s through Entertainment or the relationships we build doesn’t matter to me. From an Entertainment context, we really want to make sure everything on the stage has a purpose throughout the year and that we engage everyone at an event. I’m excited to lead ENT towards those goals and see how my Captains and Committee Members step up to the challenge.

Why do you THON?

I’m passionate about providing kids with critical illnesses, like cancer, experiences where they have fun and forget about their diagnosis. I really enjoy working with kids. Through THON and other experiences like at Double H Ranch, the summer camp I work at, I have been able to give back to families and kids that have it tougher than the rest of us and provide them with amazing experiences and a meaningful support system. That mission is important to me and is the reason I THON.

What’s your favorite THON memory?

My favorite THON memory is from my freshman year when I was on a Kids Mail Call Committee for Morale. Kids Mail is cool because the committee is able to hang out with kids and play games on the stage and floor for an hour THON Weekend. I had the opportunity to go back to the South Annex and bring the families out for this hour and that experience was special to me because it was the first time I interacted with a Four Diamonds Family. It was great to talk to parents and kids and see how excited they were about THON and getting their mail. It showed me how our support can help and how much it means to the families, which is a memory that has always stuck with me.

Per Onward State tradition, if you could be any dinosaur, which one would you be and why?

I honestly have no idea.

About the Author

Elissa Hill

Elissa is a junior public relations major and the managing editor of Onward State. She is from Punxsutawney, PA [insert corny Bill Murray joke here] and considers herself an expert on all things ice cream. Send questions and comments via e-mail ([email protected]) and follow her on Twitter (@ElissaKHill) for more corny jokes.


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