Blue Out 2014: WE ARE teaching today, protecting tomorrow.
The Penn State family remains committed to doing our part to ensure the safety and well-being of children.
The annual Blue Out event will be held on Senior Day, November 29th, 2014.
Show your support by getting your official 2014 Blue Out gear at Family Clothesline and Penn State Bookstores (all campuses).
Together, we will show the world what Penn State truly represents.
Blue Out History
The first and largest public response to the Sandusky/Penn State scandal was founded by two students. Laura March, a dual-degree graduate student in Art Education and Instructional Systems/Learning, Design & Technology, and Stuart Shapiro, a first-year student in the MBA program, started the movement to “Blue Out” Beaver Stadium for the Penn State Football game against Nebraska on Nov. 12, 2011. March and Shapiro campaigned to have all fans wear blue, the color of ribbons displayed in support of child abuse awareness.
The idea originated just six days before the game, when Shapiro brought the news of Jerry Sandusky’s child sex abuse charges to March’s attention. Previously she had taken “Arts Across the Curriculum,” a course created by Dr. Kimberly Powell, which stressed how art and visual culture can foster positive social interactions. March looked up the awareness ribbon color for child abuse prevention and realized its potential significance. March and Shapiro began utilizing new and social media as well as traditional outlets to spread the idea. They combined forces with Therese Jones, a Penn State alum now studying at UC Berkley, who created a Facebook event page for the game. March also approached McClanahan’s (a local apparel store) and designed a Blue Out t-shirt, which they sold and donated all proceeds to charity. In total, $47,000 was raised for charity in 2011 — $25,000 was donated by McLanahan’s to Prevent Child Abuse PA, and $22,000 was collected at the game through canning and split between Prevent Child Abuse PA and the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR).
Other students and members of the Penn State community formed groups dedicated to child abuse/rape prevention shortly thereafter. Stuart and Laura began working with One Heart to continue to provide activism support. The second Blue Out event took place September 22, 2012 and raised $79,056 in donations for PCAR. Laura designed a 2012-specific t-shirt that was sold at university bookstores on all Penn State campuses, the Family Clothesline, Neebo, and Lion’s Pride that raised $65,565. Penn State student and cheerleader Ally Zimmerman created unique Blue Out sunglasses and sold them through her company, State Shades, and collected $370 in donations. PCAR initiated a text-to-donate campaign that raised $250. One Heart members canned at the stadium on game day and raised $12,871. Laura and Stuart graduated in May 2012, and turned over all Blue Out responsibilities to One Heart. The group elected Tori Smith, a rising junior Finance major, as Blue Out Chair.
The third annual Blue Out was held on September 21st 2013 and was hosted by Penn State’s One Heart: Students Against the Sexual Abuse of Children. Tee shirts were sold downtown for $15 each, and proceeds were donated to PCAR.
We are proud to announce that this year’s Blue Out will be held on November 29th in Beaver Stadium against Michigan State! Tee shirts are currently being sold downtown at Family Clothesline for $15, and hoodies and beanies will be on sale soon. The HUB Bookstore and all Commonwealth campuses will be carrying Blue Out gear soon.
Stadium flyover image from Kevin P. Coughlin/Flying Dog Photos