student involvement

The University of Kentucky Gives Back: Dance Blue for the Kids

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It’s the best day of the year! You know what that means, DANCE BLUE! Not sure what that is? Well let me tell you.

Dance Blue Revealwww.danceblue.org

It is a 24-hour no sitting, no sleeping student-run dance marathon held at the University of Kentucky. It’s a huge fundraising event that goes toward the Kentucky Children’s Hospital (KCH) and is devoted to Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Research.  This year at Dance Blue 2014, over 100 campus organizations participated and there were over 800 dancers who helped raise a total of $1,436,606.24 for the kids.

Liza Krein with friends Rosana and Andrea

WHOA. Incredible, right? As a participant in the marathon for the second year in a row, I can only speak very highly of this wonderful philanthropy event. Part of being a dancer in the event is learning a line dance in the beginning to perform at the top of every hour. This might be one of the coolest things to watch, here’s a video from the campus newspaper (Kentucky Kernel) to give you a glimpse of the event.

At times during the marathon it gets hard though and you feel pain in your feet that you never thought you could feel in your life. That you are so exhausted from sleep deprivation, you consider learning to sleep with your eyes open (and standing up – giraffes can do it, maybe you can to?) and for some reason, no matter how many meals they give you, you are STARVING.

Dance Blue Ribbonwww.danceblue.org

The last few hours of Dance Blue make it all worth the pain and suffering though. As you watch the children from KCH get on stage for the Talent Show hour (my personal favorite), you can’t help but forget all the pain. This year there was a cheerleading routine as well as several talented singers and I could never forget the little girl whose talent was doing the splits. Hearing the stories of families personally affected by KCH is the most moving thing you will ever hear, with tears rolling down your face from the positivity and energy you feel or the utter pain you’re in; you realize why you’re dancing. For The Kids. #FTK #DB14Dance BlueIf you would like to read more information about this philanthropy, check out www.danceblue.org or if you would like to donate for next year’s marathon (you can never start fundraising too early!!) you can go here www.danceblue.org/Donate/Donate-to-DanceBlue

The Benefits of Joining Student Organizations

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PRSSAI truly believe that joining a registered student organization (RSO) was one of the smartest, most beneficial decisions I made in college. Upon transferring to ISU last fall, I joined their Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) chapter. As a member of PRSSA, I am exposed to so many opportunities I wouldn’t get in a classroom environment (even if it is a College Course for the Real World). I highly recommend joining a student organization that relates to your field of study. The knowledge and experience you gain is beyond valuable.

Being a member of a registered student organization is a great opportunity to work your way into a leadership position. As a member last year, I was able to observe how the organization was run and create my own ideas. This is my second year as a member of PRSSA, and I decided to take my membership one step further; I applied for a chair position. I am proud to say that this year I will be the Relations committee blog chair. Employers love to see progression from member to leader on a resume, so keep that in mind when becoming involved!

Running for a leadership position in your registered student organization should not be taken lightly. I took it just as serious as applying for a job. I had to polish my resume and write a cover letter, which I had no idea how to do. This gave me a chance to not only learn how to write a cover letter, but to also practice my interview skills. Our PRSSA chapter maintains a high level of professionalism, largely due to the seriousness of its’ members.

Your years as an undergraduate student give you the opportunity to prepare for your future career. You can choose to pursue experiences that will help you out, or you can sit idly and wish later on that you had gotten involved. The choice is yours!