Patrick Watkavitch, 20, of Weedville, along with 707 fellow Penn State students, succeeded in raising just over $9.5 million for The Four Diamonds Fund, an organization committed to conquering pediatric cancer. Their efforts were all part of the annual Penn State IFC/Panhellenic Dance Marathon.
Affectionately referred to as THON, the event is the largest student-run philanthropy in the world, having raised more than $78 million since 1977.
As a sophomore at Penn State DuBois, Patrick is a 2009 graduate from St. Marys Area High School and is the son of Richard and Denise Watkavitch. He is majoring in Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering. He was joined at THON by his dance partner, Heidi Miller.
"Simply put, THON was the best experience of my life. My experience at THON is now a memory etched into my mind that I will never forget," Watkavitch said. "I plan to attend THON each year from here on out. It's something I hold dear to my heart and I'd hate to miss it. Every year it's different, it's better, and even more amazing."