Atlas History

Atlas was founded in September 2005 on the "Atlas" floor of Atherton Hall. The founding members, which included, Matt Sterling and some friends on his floor, wanted to be able to get involved with the Penn State Dance Marathon (THON), without having to be a member of a club sport or the Greek System.  In its inaugural year, Atlas was paired with the Victoria Smith family and raised a little over $26,000. We have only grown from there! The following year, we more than tripled our fundraising total and became the top independent organization.

In 2010, Atlas was lucky to be paired with the Claire Brobson family. That same year, THON 2011, Atlas was the highest-raising organization overall at THON. Just a few days before THON weekend 2012, Atlas was again lucky to be paired with the Amarie Gerena family.

In 2015, the Brobsons decided that they wanted to see Atlas be paired with another family, officially un-pairing with Atlas to become a legacy family. Atlas' relationship with our families did not change, but it gave us the opportunity to apply for a new family. Atlas was paired with our fourth family, the Samir Johnson family before THON 2015. Atlas continues to watch our THON kids grow to be strong and healthy!

Our Families

The THON-Adopt-A-Family program allows organizations to be paired with Four Diamond families to bring volunteers and families closer together. Atlas is privileged to have been paired with four amazing families: The Smiths, The Brobsons, The Gerenas, and The Johnsons!  

Our Legacy


THON 2018: discovering tomorrow's wonder

Total: $171,946.40 (first overall)

"Dancing Together so No One Fights Alone" for Victoria Smith, Claire Brobson, Amarie Gerena, and Samir Johnson

Dancers: John Peterson, Catherine Wastella, Kateyln Estelow, Kelly Kowalski, Kristi Mirth, Jim Srock, Samuel Gilbert

Executive Board: John Peterson (President), Hope Hushon, Trand Wright, Tyler Christoffel, Catherine Wastella, Katie Lee, Katie Burns, Samuel Gilbert, Anya Wood, Caroline Philbin, Shane Lutton 



THON 2017: Igniting hope within

Total: $189,909.63 (second overall)

"The World is Our Dance Floor" for Victoria Smith, Claire Brobson, Amarie Gerena, and Samir Johnson

Dancers: Alex Hannaway, Alyssa Black, Alyssa Kustenbauder, Hannah Robinson, Josh Schechtman, Nicole Guerrero, Sam Eckstein, Sean Russo

Executive Board: Kate Robinson (President), John Peterson, Kateyln Estelow, Josh Schechtman Kelly Kowalski, Kristi Mirth, Alex Hannaway, Jim Srock, Alyssa Kustenbauder, Hannah Robinson, David Zarsketsmy 


THON 2016: Believe Beyond Boundaries

Total: $298,611.81 (first overall)

"Dancing Today for a Better Tomorrow" for Victoria Smith, Claire Brobson, Amarie Gerena, and Samir Johnson

Dancers: Andrea Garbrick, Andrew Kowalski, Josh Zollman, Kaylee McNamara, Kate Robinson, Laura Lano, Meghan Riegel, Nick Benelli, Rachele Poveromo, Wilton Smith

Executive Board: Keegan Walters (President), Patrick Kunz, Josh Zollman, Sean Russo, Kate Robinson, Samantha Eckstein, Angela Buccellato, Connor Charney, Mikayla Voller, Katie Nastase, Rachele Poveromo