thon students

Students Jake Spagnola (junior-economics), Carlo Zarro (junior-economics) and Sammy Eline (sophomore-finance) pose for a photo in the lower bowl of the Bryce Jordan Center at Penn State THON 2019.

Official Penn State THON dancers aren’t the only students who plan to stay in the Bryce Jordan Center all 46 hours.

Some students have stood in the stands all 46 hours in previous years and couldn’t wait to do it all again this year. Other students decided last minute to be in the stands from beginning to end.

Member of Alpha Phi, Ally Satterthwite and Hailey Gibson said they made their decision to stay the full 46 hours a few days before THON weekend.

“The kids suffer through this pain every single day of their lives because of cancer. They motivated us to stand for the 46 hours,” Gibson (freshman-chemical engineering) said. “I always told myself I’d stay the whole 46 hours.”

Scott Kohler of the Phi Chi Theta fraternity said his THON families have had a huge impact on his decision to stand for all 46 hours.

“It’s super cool to build that relationship with [our THON families],” Kohler (junior-supply chain management) said. “It really reminds you what [THON] is all about and brings a personal connection to it. I want to dance next year, so if I can do it in the stands, I can do it on the floor.”

Carlo Zarro and Jake Spagnola, members of Delta Chi, both plan on standing together for all of THON weekend.

“Our THON child, Owen, is our inspiration so we wanted to do it for him. It makes it easier when you’re with your friends and are with others who are dedicated to staying all 46 hours,” Zarro (sophomore-division of undergraduate studies) said.

Sammy Eline, who stayed for 46 hours last year too, said her decision to stay this year had to do with being there to support her Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority sisters dancing on the floor.

“[I wanted to] be there for our dancers so that they have someone to look at and be motivated when they’re dancing,” Eline (sophomore-finance) said. “If kids with cancer can get through it, we can get through standing for 46 hours.”

Spagnola (junior-economics) also stayed all 46 hours last year, and hopes to be a dancer on the floor his senior year.

“I love the kids, and I love Penn State too because this doesn’t happen [at any other college],” Spagnola said. “This is why we are Penn State and this separates us from any other state school.”

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