On April 21, 2013, members of the WMBA, as well as a few fellow MBA students ran a 5K or walked a mile as a fundraiser for the Special Olympics of Pennsylvania. Through our Date Auction in February 2013 and a few personal donations, the WMBA raised over $2,000! While not everyone ended up being able to attend the run/walk, Courtney Budd, Josh Gertel, Julie Golofski, Maryam Shahri, and myself (Diane Merzbach) joined over 3,700 participants which ended on the 50 yard line of Beaver Stadium. The entire event raised more than $360,000, which is the largest fundraiser for Special Olympics PA to date!
Overall, the experience was amazing. They let the Special Olympics participants being walking first, then a few minutes later, gave the countdown and let a flood of people loose on Curtin Road. Myself, Julie, and Maryam sped walked to make sure that we got to the finish line in time to cheer on our classmates, Courtney and Josh. I could definitely see why the football players love running onto the field – the experience of walking through the tunnel into the center of the field was simply amazing. The first running came in at just over 16 minutes, and while we were waiting for our friends, another runner was surprised by her boyfriend – who proposed! All in all, the experience was one that only one word could describe: inspirational.
-Diane Merzbach, WMBA President, Penn State Smeal MBA ’14