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Video -- THON 2010: For Atlas, It's Not About The Money

on February 20, 2010 3:15 PM

Already Penn State’s 2009 homecoming king, senior Greg Tallman still has one more significant event to look forward to before graduating.

For the first time in his four years at Penn State, Tallman will be dancing in the Penn State IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon (THON). A current member and former president of Atlas THON, Tallman said he expects this year’s event to rank among his favorites during his Penn State career.

“I’ve had a pretty awesome run here,” he said. “I’ve been Homecoming king, on the overall THON committee and of course Atlas. Looking at the top three moments – Thon ’07, ’08 and ’09 – I can’t imagine this being any different.”

Tallman joined Atlas Thon as a freshman in 2006. Since then, he has helped Atlas become the one of the premier THON organizations at Penn State. In each of the last three years, Atlas has raised more money towards THON than any other independent organization (without Greek affiliation).

In 2009, while Tallman served as the Communications Chair for the Overall THON Committee, Atlas raised $216,785.15, ranking third among all organizations. This year, Tallman said he’s excited to see if Atlas can break last year’s record, but was quick to say that THON is not about the money.

“Our goal is never to ‘win,’ ” Tallman said. “It’s about doing everything you possibly can. Fortunately for us, we’ve put up some astronomic numbers, but other independent organizations have popped up raising $30, 40, 50 thousand.”

According to Atlas Thon Executive Chair Dan Levy, Tallman has not only been a part of raising money, but he’s also been a big influence on Atlas Thon members who joined after him.

“He really gets what Atlas is all about,” Levy said. “Greg was President of Atlas when I was a freshman and the reason a lot of us got involved.”

Influence by current members is key for recruiting. Thon is currently the largest student-run philanthropy in the world.

Starting in 1973 by the IFC, 39 couples danced for 30 hours and helped raise over $2,000 for pediatric cancer. Since then the event has become a yearly phenomenon. The 2009 event raised $7,490,133.87, a new record.

Now, with over 15,000 student volunteers and 700 dancers, the annual 46-hour event has raised more than $61 million to benefit The Four Diamonds Fund at Penn State Children’s Hospital.

Next Article
THON 2010: Fatigue Starts To Set In
February 20, 2010 10:40 AM
THON 2010: Fatigue Starts To Set In
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