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Cassi Dahms: Co-Director of Dancer Relations

Meet Cassi Dahms – Co-Director of Dancer Relations this year at HuskyTHON

Year: Senior!! It’s really weird to say that and the only thing that makes it easier is that I am here for Grad School next year so even though I am graduating I am not leaving.

Major: I am a dual major, History and Secondary Social Studies Education. I am in the Neag School of Education accelerated Bachelors/ Masters Program to become a Secondary Social Studies Teacher. I’ll be certified to teach 6 to 12th but I prefer teaching in a high school.

This Saturday you’ll be participating in Huskython, but what’s normally your favorite way to spend a Saturday night?  

 I really can’t wrap my mind around the fact that HuskyTHON is in two days…. And if we are being completely honest Saturday evenings you would find me at Nickel Night at Huskies, mostly likely in the back corner telling anyone who will listen how amazing HuskyTHON is, potentially crying because I love it so much and practicing the past morale dances anytime a song comes on. Please don’t judge me for that answer … I promise I am always #FTK. If HuskyTHON was every weekend I would be there in a heartbeat, you wouldn’t have to ask me twice or actually even once.

How did you first get involved in Huskython?

I heard about HuskyTHON when I was touring UConn for the first time when I was still a senior in high school. It had always been on my bucket list to take part in a 24-hour dance marathon so when I heard “18-hour dance marathon” I thought THIS IS MY CHANCE. Then once I joined my sorority, Alpha Phi, as a freshman everyone started talking about HuskyTHON again so naturally I signed up, not realizing the impact it would have on my entire UConn experience. A older sister in Alpha Phi was on the Management Team as Co-Director of Morale so I decided to signed up as a Morale Captain and from that point on I applied and got the position of Morale Captain as a freshman, sophomore and junior. Each year I fell more in love with the event and it became a date that I looked forward to every winter.

What made you decide to join the management team, and more specifically influenced your decision to take on the role of co-director of dancer relations?

 As a freshman doing the Morale Dance the first time night of I thought it would be so cool to be able to be one of those older students on the stage in the spiffy polo’s. Little did I know that an 18-hour event would turn into my favorite night at UConn, after my first HuskyTHON ended I knew I would apply for Management Team and want to have the opportunity to help plan the best event that UConn has to offer. The description of Dancer Relations on the application had something to do with speaking to a room of over 100 people, relaying important information from the Management Team to the Dancer Reps and working well with another Co-Director. I was the Vice President of Risk Management for my chapter for two years so I was used to talking in front of over a group of 100 individuals and I really think that I could make friends with just about anyone so I knew I wouldn’t have trouble getting along with another director. I don’t think I an exactly put a reason on it, all I know is after reading all the different descriptions for Management Team positions this is the one I knew I wanted.

What does your job as co-director of dancer relations entail?

Emails. Lots and lots of emails. We are in constant communication with the Dancer Reps from every team sighed up for Huskython, whether it is passing along information about ZombieTHON and ZumbaTHON to pushing recruitment and fundraising to asking them to sign up for tabling to making sure what to bring night of and when to check in, we are the messenger Gods. First semester we held bi-weekly meetings to get everyone pumped up but by second semester we had weekly meetings because there is just so much information that needs to be explained and passed on. It was awesome to see the amount of Dancer Reps grow each meeting, our first meeting we had around 30 people and by the end we had 100 people!! Another really big aspect is recruitment. Dancer Relations is part of the recruitment team so we traveled around to different organization’s meetings and told them all about HuskyTHON and encouraged involvement. And a lot of other recruitment related activities. Mere and I always say, ‘we love dancers and we love relations.’

The idea of staying awake for the full 18 hours at Huskython can sound daunting at first, especially to newcomers! Do you have any tips for anyone new on how to stay awake and excited through the night?

KEEP MOVING. Once you stop moving and stand still you realize how much your feet hurt. Hang out with people who are high energy because you will feed off of that. I am personally REALLY high energy, especially night of and I just jump around and act very energetic around people who aren’t being energetic and that usually pumps them up. LEARN THE MORALE DANCE. If you learn the dance not only is that 10 minutes of every hour that you have something to do but it is something to look forward to and the sick dance moves pump you up, especially this year because the songs are funky fresh

What are you most looking forward to this year at Huskython?

Do you have 3 hours for me to ramble? I think I am most excited for the fact that I will be on the other side of everything as a Management Team member. I am not sure what to expect, I am assuming lots of tears and laughs and happiness and sadness, a lot of emotions all at once. I am so excited to be participating in my 4th and final HuskyTHON with the amazing other management team members and all the awesome UConn students who have signed up this year. I think the best two moments and the ones I am looking forward to is the first morale dance where we are all going to be on the stage looking out over what we planned and all we did. And then again in the morning, when we do the last morale dance and eventually the reveal and see how the entire UConn community has come together for something so much bigger then ourselves. Thinking about and then seeing over 2,000 college students come together to dance for 18 hours for the kids at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center is really just amazing. No other way to say it. I am excited for everything but mostly I am excited to be a part of something that does so much good for others and to see what these past 11 months of hard work created.

All Photographs courtesy of Cassi Dahms 

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Katie Lynch

U Mass Amherst

A Communications and Journalism Major at UMass Amherst
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