With a new on-campus venue, the fourth annual Chancellor's Gala is set for 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 28, in the campus Athletics Center.
The theme of the gala is "Blue and White Lions Night," and the event brings together founders, donors, alumni, students, faculty and staff, and features dinner and dancing, silent auction, mystery box sale and raffle items. The master of ceremonies is Mark Pavlik, head coach of Penn State’s men’s volleyball team, and musical entertainment is provided by Dr. Zoot, a swing band from Pittsburgh. The cost is $100.
"The gala is a celebration of Penn State New Kensington and the surrounding community," said Kevin Snider, chancellor at the campus and the inspiration for the event. "It is a look into the coming year of what the campus and communities are doing to enhance the Alle-Kiski region.”
During his 18 years at the helm, Pavlik has built the Nittany Lions into a national powerhouse. The 1982 Penn State graduate has compiled a 414-120 record while capturing the NCAA national championship in 2008. Pavilk’s coaching philosophy stresses hard work in practice and a relaxed approach to competition. A native of Derry, Pa., Pavlik served as an assistant to Derry High School coach Rich Schall from 1985-88. Derry won two state titles (1986, 1988) and finished second in 1987 and third in 1985.
Dr. Zoot--Sal Ventura (piano, keyboards, vocals); Al Peden (upright bass); Izzy Arlet (guitar, percussion, vocals); Mark Snyder (trombone, vocals); Oscar Menosky (trumpet, vocals); Dan Heasley (sax, flute, clarinet); and Brandon Barnes, (drums)--was formed in 1998. The group has recorded four CDs and has played the East Coast, from Atlantic City to Key West. They have regular gigs in the tri-state region.
The event is a part of the University-wide fundraising effort, "For the Future: The Campaign for Penn State Students." The gala committee has set an ambitious goal of raising $20,000. Last year's gala brought in more than $10,000, a new record for the three-year-old event. The total represented a 25 percent increase over the previous year. The silent auction, mystery box sale and raffle items are the main sources of the revenue. While the contents of the mystery boxes cannot be revealed, the auction items include tickets to a Penguins ice hockey game at the Consol Energy Center, a football signed by Penn State coach Bill O’Brien, and a golf package.
For those who cannot make the gala, a special auction feature, "Buy it Now," allows Penn Staters and friends from around the world to purchase items prior to the auction at a pre-determined price. All proceeds benefit the campus' Advisory Board Trustee Scholarship. The Advisory Board, headed by president Al Weber, is hosting the gala.
In addition to fundraising, the Chancellor's Gala serves as a platform for the campus to honor its special donors with the "Corporate/Foundation Partner of the Year" award and "Arch Society" inductions.
Snider established the corporate/foundation partner award in 2009 to recognize companies that have a history of outstanding commitment to Penn State and the community. The commitment includes various avenues of support: student internships and scholarships; faculty research and fellowships; facility upgrades; and campus activities that engage the community. Alcoa was the first recipient. Leed's was honored in 2010 and the Hyman family Foundation was recognized a year ago.
The Arch Society was founded in 2010 and named for the arch that stands at the front entrance to the campus. Designed by Henry Noestheden and donated by Alcoa, the aluminum arch has been a campus landmark since 1976. A symbol of the history and spirit of the campus, the arch is a significant tribute to the campus’s achievements. It was the inspiration for the creation of the new society that supports the needs and programs of Penn State New Kensington students. The membership roster includes 24 alumni and friends. Three more will be added this year.
To access the “Buy it Now” auction, visit http://www.nk.psu.edu/44902.htm online.