Written By: Erica Smith and Katelyn Weller
The Rules and Regulations Committee is an integral part of THON™’s success. The committee is composed of 40 captains and over 700 committee members. It is broken down into two categories, Event Safety and Fundraising Safety. Event Safety is responsible for ensuring a safe and secure environment across year-long THON events. The most recent event was the THON 5K powered by PNC. Their main responsibility consisted of ensuring that all spectators, families, and volunteers are in a safe environment at all times by guaranteeing the raceway is clear and safe for the race to occur.
Dakota Weglarz, a fourth-year student from Huntingdon, PA, is a Captain of the Rules and Regulations Committee, specifically Event Safety. Weglarz instantly joined a THON committee during his first year at Penn State. He feels especially connected through the stories that are shared with him by the Family Relations Committee. The stories that have been shared with him at every meeting since his first year at Penn State have become a long-lasting motivation for him and led him to become a Captain.
When asked about his role as an Event Safety Captain, he stated that his job is all about enforcing safety measures at events, which is not only fun but also helps to keep families, runners, and participants safe.
Weglarz has an undeniably strong passion for THON and loves to share this passion with others. “I THON so we can have more tomorrows for kids,” Weglarz said. “Growing up is such a beautiful thing, and I had a great childhood (which I miss) and if I can fight for that, then I will.”
Wes Saunders is a fourth-year student from Westchester, PA, and a member of the Event Safety Committee. Saunders has been involved with THON for all four years of his student career. He expressed that not only has he made his closest friends through his THON involvement but found his “mission” and a way to give back to a school and community that has given him so much. “THON not only brings me closer to the community here at Penn State but closer to a cure for childhood cancer,” Saunders said.
Saunders is extremely passionate about THON’s mission and has deep motivations for what he does. “To summarize it… I THON for those who can’t,” Saunders said. “I THON of those in our hearts who are no longer with us. I THON so no family has to hear the words ‘your child has cancer’ again.”
The Rules and Regulations Committee will continue to work hard at all THON events for the entirety of the year. Their nonstop efforts are not only important at the events leading up to THON Weekend, but especially during the weekend itself. During THON Weekend, you can find the Rules and Regulations Committee facilitating many aspects of the event, such as Entrance Plan, Floor Access, and multiple THON Weekend events for dancers, families, and spectators. Keep an eye out for the red shirts THON Weekend, and make sure to thank them for all of their hard work!