There are some moments in college that change your life forever. For Elizabeth Pritchard (’14 child, adult, and family services), that moment was when she signed up for Iowa State’s Dance Marathon to benefit the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. Even though, at the time, she didn’t know what Dance Marathon was. “Quite honestly,” said Pritchard, “when I signed up for Dance Marathon, I had no idea what it was, but my friends were doing it, so I followed suit. It turned out to be positive peer pressure.”

That moment didn’t just change Pritchard’s college experience. It also prepared her for a career she didn’t expect for herself – as a programs and events manager for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in Kansas City. In this role, she still gets to work with Dance Marathon families, only this time she just happens to be in the Greater Kansas City area. Said Pritchard, “I’ve always had a passion for working with children, and this was the perfect opportunity to continue that passion.”

Throughout the year, students participating in Dance Marathon do everything “FTK” – which in Dance Marathon lingo means “For The Kids.” Whether they’re walking a 4K for a boy with leukemia or dancing with a girl recovering from neuroblastoma, they’re building friendships with the kids – and with other like-minded students as well. “The incredible aspect of being a part of Dance Marathon was witnessing the camaraderie,” said Pritchard. “It didn’t matter if you were in a sorority or fraternity, a nontraditional student, or a student studying abroad – everyone was there ‘For The Kids.’”

Helping children with life-threatening illnesses is just one of the many ways you can get involved on your Iowa State adventure. But no matter if you choose to participate in Dance Marathon or run an actual marathon with the Iowa State Running Club, you’re going to meet people along your journey who will change your life. Forever.

Find out more about Iowa State Dance Marathon.  http://www.dm.stuorg.iastate.edu