March 21, 2018
Saint Vincent College is preparing for one of its most popular charitable fundraising events of the year – Mr. SVC – set for 7 p.m. Friday, April 20, in the Robert S. Carey Student Center Performing Arts Center in conjunction with Spring Family Weekend.
Admission is $5 per person and all proceeds benefit the Banana Project in Guatemala which provides bananas for children at an elementary school there.
Participants in this year’s event include Dan Boland, a senior accounting major from Pittsburgh (15227); Kevin Kuhn, a senior finance major from North Huntingdon; Granville Wagner, a senior marketing major from Fallston, Maryland; Del Bredniak, a senior communication major from Washington; John Marcius, a senior management major from Westmoreland City; Joey Hoffner, a senior communication major from Manor; Luke Good, a senior marketing major from Pittsburgh (15236); Evan Jones, a senior accounting major from Fair Haven, New Jersey; DJ Hough, a senior early childhood education major from Steubenville, Ohio; Michael Brinker, a senior communication major from Bethel Park; Lou Tate, a senior management major from Clymer; and Dan Straka, a senior environmental science major from Pittsburgh (15243).
The event is being chaired this year by Mitchell G. Farrell of Lower Burrell, a senior at Saint Vincent College majoring in accounting and music. He served as treasurer of the Student Government Association Executive Board in 2017 and was previously active in SGA as a class secretary and class treasurer. Farrell has been on three service immersion trips as a student at Saint Vincent, and he has had a strong enthusiasm for service work in Guatemala throughout his college career.
“Mr. SVC is a major fundraiser for the Saint Vincent College Banana Project,” Farrell commented. “This project allows us to provide an additional banana for each student in a school outside of Guatemala City each week. It may not sound like much, but school meals are often the only source of food a child gets each day. So, having an extra banana really does help. Last year, we also began a scholarship fund with the excess money we raised at the pageant. We hope to continue that project this year. Hopefully, in a few more years, we will have enough money to send some of these children on to a secondary school for free.“
Contestants in the event raise funds before the pageant by seeking sponsorship from their peers. Tickets are sold for $5 which enters buyers into a lottery to win a Mr. SVC t-shirt. A portion of the funds is also used as votes by the contestant for the people’s choice contest. “The People's choice contest determines which contestant the crowd likes the most,” Farrell explained. “They vote for the winner by making donations into the basket with that contestant’s name on it (and with their ticket purchase).” Last year, people's choice alone raised almost $2,000.” Tickets go on sale on Monday, April 16, at the Campus Life Window in the Robert S. Carey Student Center.
“Contestants are judged based on three areas of competition,” Farrell noted. “Fun fashion, usually a costume with matching music; formal wear; and on-stage questions about Saint Vincent or themselves. Audience members are also invited on stage for dance-offs, trivia questions and other opportunities to win prizes.” Last year’s winner dressed as Fred Rogers and sang “It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.”
In addition to the SGA sponsorship, suits worn by contestants are loaned by JCPenney’s at Westmoreland Mall.
Co-coordinators of Mr. SVC are juniors Jessica Packard and Marion Emerson who will chair the event next year.
Photo: Participants in the Mr. SVC pageant in 2017