No matter what your perception of Dance Marathon might be, there is no arguing that it is a large recruiting tool for the University.
You don’t have to look any further than what Miracle Child Alexis Flynn said Saturday morning while telling her story. She announced that she wanted to come to Bowling Green State University for college and spoke about the support she has received from the members of Dance Marathon.
She reminisced on an essay she wrote detailing her biggest supporters. Flynn knelt down and said, “I thought, ‘Hmm… how many people go to BGSU?’”
That was just one incidence, the second came when announcing the total for Dance Marathon’s Mini Marathon group. Norwalk high school came and announced that they raised $5,484.10. Their advisor is a University alumnus and one of their committee members will be attending the University in the fall.
Those partnerships with high schools from around the area help recruitment, Director of Dance Marathon Alison Doughty said.
“BGSU Dance Marathon partners with high schools in the local area and they host their own dance marathon,” Doughty said. “Often times because they are working with us they decide to apply to BG and come here.”
Now it’s easier than ever before to use Dance Marathon as a tool, the University doesn’t even have to put forth much effort.
Because of social media and YouTube, when a prospective student searches “BGSU” they can find Dance Marathon very easily, and that has happened multiple times Doughty said.
It reaches further than the high school students though, Doughty said that some Miracle Children themselves have come to the University after being a part of Dance Marathon.
Along with those Miracle Children, three members of this year’s leadership team had experiences with Dance Marathon in high school.
“[Dance Marathon] is a huge recruitment initiative,” Doughty said.
Vice President for Student Affairs Jill Carr said that the most important part of the event in terms of recruiting is that it is all student run.
“The biggest thing is it allows our students to reach out beyond the campus and beyond themselves to those who are in great need,” Carr said. “Being with families and children from children’s miracle network, giving students the opportunity to do that in this age group is clearly a developmental moment.”
While how much money is raised for Toledo Mercy Children’s Hospital is important, maybe just as important is that Dance Marathon has the ability to reach prospective students and give them a taste of what the University is about.
“It brings in the type of people who are willing to give back and stand up for what they believe in. I think that is what the BGSU community is all about,” Doughty said.