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Penn State Scranton Dancers Make Historic Trip To THON 2019

Three Penn State Scranton students made history this weekend when they became their Commonwealth Campus’s first dancer trio.

Their selection marked the first time that Scranton has been allotted three THON dancer positions.

Commonwealth Campuses are traditionally allotted fewer THON dancer spots than University Park organizations. Four Diamonds families are also more likely to be paired with University Park organizations, often making it difficult for Commonwealth dancers to be assigned to a THON child.

Alex Squatrito, a sophomore early childhood education major, Katie Walsh, a junior nursing major, and Dana Beecroft, also a junior nursing major, were the three dancers chosen to represent Penn State Scranton and the Arelis Rodriguez Family, who are attending their first THON.

Walsh, Beecroft and Squatrito represent Penn State Scranton’s increasing involvement in THON.

“When we first started at our campus, THON wasn’t huge,” Squatrito said.

The participants from Scranton have raised significant contributions toward THON’s fundraising total over the past three years. Penn State Scranton students raised over $14,000 in 2017 and over $28,000 in 2018. Squatrito said she expects Scranton’s contribution to be around $40,000 this year.

The dancers arrived in town on February 14 and have had a large group of fellow Penn State Scranton students, staff, and faculty supporting them.

Photo: Penn State Scranton Benefitting Thon Instagram

Their THON child, Arelis Rodriguez, was recently declared cancer-free. This is also her first time at THON, making this year especially memorable.

“This is her first THON here with us, and just the new memories she’s making is amazing.” Walsh said. “We got to see her a few hours ago and her and her whole family were here, it was great to see them have such an amazing time.”

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About the Author

Ryen Gailey

Ryen is a senior early childhood education major from "right outside of Philly" - or in exact words, from 23.0 miles outside of Philly. She loves all things Penn State and has been a huge Penn State gal since before she could walk. Send her pictures of puppies, or hate mail at [email protected]

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