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As many of you know, the THON 5k will take place this weekend. It is one of the major fundraising events leading up to THON and everyone comes out to either run or walk the 5K and have a great time doing it.

There will be a kids race first, and then the competitive run and the fun run will start afterwards. It is a great way to show your support and get to know all of the people involved, as well as some of the THON families.

Within the past week, I have seen so many flyers and posters urging people to support this event, and this one definitely stuck with me. Although it may just be because I love little kids.

The official THON Facebook page posted this the other day along with the hashtag #runwithus.  I think it is amazing how much such a huge event like THON uses social media to get their mission out there.

I have a lot of friends who are involved in THON in some way, and all of them have posted statuses recently spreading the word about the 5K, but also about THON in general. It makes me wonder, what would THON be if it weren’t for all of the social media that is available to us 24/7.

Social media can be used for anything. However, I appreciate the fact that the people involved in THON have found a way to use it to their advantage and to benefit a good cause.

#runwithus FTK!



HW Post # 7

For my TED Talk, I would like to explore the role of nostalgia in today’s society. I feel like the past years have been characterized only by this push for new discoveries, but recently, there has been a step back, in the sense that people are appreciating the past more. I would like to talk about what role nostalgia plays in society, but also in the individual. Do people benefit from feeling nostalgia? Or is focusing on the future a better option?

My Turn To Try

GMB logo

This year, I am involved in an organization on campus called Global Medical Brigades. Global Brigades is one of the world’s largest student-led global health and sustainable development organizations. It develops sustainable health initiatives and provides relief where there is limited access to healthcare. Since its beginning, more than 30,000 volunteers from over 800 university clubs have traveled to provide health and economic development solutions to more than 600,000 beneficiaries. Our efforts are focused mainly in Honduras, Panama, Nicaragua, and Ghana.

I am in the Penn State chapter of the GMB, and I will be attending a service trip this winter break to Nicaragua, where we will be setting up free clinics and establishing healthier practices among the communities there. We do a lot of fundraising leading up to the trip, in order to pay for our flights, as well as all of the medical supplies we will be bringing.

One of the simplest aspects of fundraising is the donations aspect. We are supposed to be going to our friends and families, as well as other small businesses and organizations that would be willing to donate.

We are so used to being the ones influenced by all different kinds of rhetoric and calls to civil engagement, but in this case, I am the one who has to influence people.

And it’s a lot harder than it looks.

We were given a form letter to send out to businesses, but where I am finding difficulty is how to approach the people that I know.

It seems like there is a right way to go about fundraising like this and a wrong way. And I definitely want to be doing it the right way. I have to think about how my words will resonate with them, and whether or not they will influence these people to want to help the cause.

HW #6 Paradigm Shift Topic

For my paradigm shift essay, I would like to write about the role of coffee shops in today’s society. In the past, coffee shops were watering holes for thinkers of all kinds. They offered a place for people to share ideas and make new ones. Today, we share ideas through the internet and video chats. Coffee shops aren’t necessary. But people still like the idea of getting together face to face, to discuss ideas. Coffee shops used to be a lot more prominent, but they still have a function in today’s society.

1. How do coffee shops function today versus in the past?

2. What changed?

3. How has the change affected the people who go to coffee shops?

4. How can we use them now to accomplish things more effectively?

What’s up with Pizza?


I’m new to this whole college thing. I’ve only been her for a few months, and I’m still getting used to everything that comes along with college life. As a freshman, I’ve learned not to wear my lanyard around my neck and how to ride the data busses. But the one thing I still don’t get it the obsession with pizza.

And I’m not just talking about pizza in any situation. No, college students wouldn’t be spending their own money ordering a pizza. But a good majority of the signs I see advertising club meetings end with, “Free Pizza”.

I wouldn’t have thought that offering a free slice would influence people that much, that they would alter their daily schedule and go to a meeting that they wouldn’t have gone to otherwise. To my surprise, I’ve heard quite a few people talking about these “Free Pizza Meetings” and more than I would have thought say things like, “Yeah, I only went for the free pizza,” or “I wasn’t going to go but there’s going to be free food.”

Are college kids really that desperate for free food, that they’d go to an entire meeting just for the snack at the end? Personally, I don’t see the draw. Granted, I am gluten free, and wouldn’t be able to eat the pizza anyway. But I have too much going on to flock to an event just to get the pizza at the end.

At first glance, offering free pizza seems like a feeble attempt at the end of these flyers trying to convince people that this meeting is worth coming to. Doesn’t seem like it would be very effective. And maybe there are other people who agree with me. But from what I’ve heard, it’s influenced quite a few people more than I would have expected.

Sleeping Beauty


Every week, my RA puts out new advertisements around our floor. Whether it is a new stall story or a new display on the bulletin board. These advertise things like events that we can attend, resources that are available to us, as well as some general tips about well-being.

My RA is a nutrition major, so she likes to remind us about everything we should be doing to keep our bodies healthy. One morning, she provided breakfast bars in the bathroom to make sure we were eating breakfast and to remind us of how important it is to eat before we start the day.

This week, there was a new display on the bulletin board in the bathroom. This time it was encouraging us to get enough sleep at night. There were a bunch of facts about different tips to make sure we are getting a healthy amount of sleep every night. But what really caught my eye was the picture of Sleeping Beauty right in the middle of the display.

I remembered how much my sister and I used to love the Disney Princesses when we were younger. We would be them for Halloween and dress up like them on any day we were feeling like a princess. I thought it was interesting to have been reminded of all of these childhood memories simply from a wall as I walked out of a bathroom stall.

Even though these memories the board brought back weren’t necessarily related to sleeping, they did make me take a moment and think about what the sign had to say, more so than if it would have just had words. I’ll admit, I don’t normally take the time to read what is on the various bulletin boards throughout campus, but I’ll acknowledge the fact that this reminder of my childhood really stood out to me.

RCL HW # 5

The artifact that I have chosen to analyze for my paper is Emma Watson’s UN Speech. I wrote about this speech in one of the past weeks for an RCL Blog, but I just felt so strongly about looking further into it that I couldn’t resist.

Gender equality is an issue that I see popping up more and more. When I came to college, I became so much more aware of the issue, both through my own personal experiences, and through the experiences of others. It is becoming more of an issue here, but also all over the world.

Despite the recent attention surrounding the inequality women face in today’s world, there has been little action to change anything, whether it is due to ignorance, unwillingness, or simply a loss for the right steps to take. Emma Watson seeks to provide the kairos needed for everyone to actively take part in the change that needs to happen.

Emma Watson is someone who women can, and have, looked up to throughout her life. There are plenty of celebrities endorsing similar campaigns, however, I would like to analyze why Emma Watson is more than just a celebrity endorsement for an ad campaign. She cares about this issue and the way that she presents herself makes people want to listen to her.

RCL HW # 4

Throughout high school, I never really minded public speaking. I enjoyed the entire process: writing the speech, practicing delivery, brainstorming ways to make it stand out. The whole thing was fun for me. I’d like to say that the enjoyment lasts throughout the process, but there is always that moment waiting to present, that my stomach starts flipping and I feel the nerves coming on.

This last presentation was no exception. I was fine throughout the writing process; I was getting excited over different part that I wanted to touch on and I had a lot of ideas for presenting. When I got to class, I knew I was ready. But, of course, the few minutes before it was my turn were full of nerves.

Looking back on the presentation, there were definitely a few things that I would like to have changed, but I think that overall it was a success. I thought my visual aids were effective and I felt that my delivery was good, but could always use some more rehearsal.

Overall I think that I was able to get my message across to the audience, however, I think I slightly misunderstood the purpose of the assignment. The way I was looking at it, I was supposed to identify the rhetorical devices and use them to explain how it encouraged civic engagement. If I were to do it again, I would focus more on the civicness of the artifact and then connect it to the rhetoric.

Even though my main goal was a little off, I still think that I was able to convey the civicness that the video was encouraging. Next time I would probably clarify that, so I could structure my presentation the way it was supposed to be.

THON 2015

This past week, the THON 2015 Promo was released.

Before I came to Penn State, I knew THON as most other people do: I knew that it did amazing things and that there was something about it that you just can’t understand until you’re at Penn State.

I was recently accepted onto the THON Hospitality Committee, and I could not be more excited. Like I said, I always knew that there was something special about this event, and I was eager to feel the excitement that everyone else was talking about.

This promo video starts out with a little boy who has leukemia. His mom recounts their struggles and eventually explains how much THON has benefitted their lives. Everyone has been touched by cancer. I have lost multiple people to this disease, and it is truly a terrible thing. No one should have to go through it alone, and that is exactly what THON does. This video, and THON in general invites anyone who is willing to stand beside these people during their tough times and give them someone to lean on.

These kids go through so much in their daily lives, that no one should ever have to endure. They are warriors who fight everyday. THON gives them an opportunity to step out of that mindset and just be kids.

None of this would be possible without the overwhelming support of donors, volunteers, and students who dedicate so much leading up to this one weekend. I’ve never experienced THON in the way I will this coming year, but if its any indication from the goosebumps on my arms after watching this video, it will be better than I had ever imagined.


The other day, Emma Watson gave a speech at a UN Summit addressing the gender inequality issue we see in today’s world. When I first saw this video, I was so impressed by how eloquently Emma spoke, and how much she cares about what she spoke of.

I have always looked up to Emma Watson. I was never a huge Harry Potter fan, but there was always something about her that I liked. She has a persona and a way of carrying herself that girls can aspire to have. In today’s society, many of the women young girls look up to advertise unhealthy looking bodies and less than admirable decisions. Emma Watson is someone any mother would love her daughter look up to.

Emma’s speech to the UN was powerful in its simplicity. She spoke slowly and generally calmly; however, the words that she was saying spoke for themselves.

She talked about feminism and how its definition has been skewed by false assumptions. Emma defines feminism as “…the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities”. She argued that gender equality isn’t solely a woman’s issue. Gender equality should be important to both genders. The differences we experience affect both sides, so both sides should be involved in the solution.

As a woman in today’s society, I can see the different ways in which women are seen. If a woman gets up in front of a group of people and commands the floor and asserts herself, she is seen as bossy; while a man doing the same thing is confident. I have been fortunate enough to have a small range of experiences regarding gender inequality. But I commend Emma Watson in her efforts, because all people no matter their gender, throughout the world, should be afforded the same.

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