LEC students take part in “Night to Shine” event for individuals with special needs


On Friday, Feb. 9, 2018, 90 Lake Erie College students visited Painesville Baptist Church to volunteer as prom dates for “Night to Shine,” a special event offering a complete prom experience to individuals with special needs ages 14 and older.

Sponsored by the Tim Tebow Foundation, “Night to Shine” took place in more than 530 churches across 50 states and 16 countries. With limo rides, a red carpet experience, "paparazzi,” and stations for hair, makeup, shoe shines and flowers, the event was a special evening for all involved. Prom attendees and their buddies enjoyed a night of dancing, karaoke, photo booths and a crowning ceremony, culminating with a video message from Tim Tebow and a balloon drop.

Now in its second year in Lake County, “Night to Shine” attracted more than 130 participants and their families. Pastor Stoney Drain from Painesville Baptist Church, an LEC alumnus, contacted Dr. Katie Krammer, associate professor and coordinator of special education, to request a strong volunteer presence from LEC students, noting the students’ great work at the inaugural event. This request led more than twice as many students from the College to participate this year.

The students who took part represented a wide range of majors and extracurricular interests. By the end of the evening, they each held in common the rewarding experience of taking part in this inspirational event. 
"I volunteered so I could share a special memory with an extraordinary person," said Crystal Kedroske, an intervention specialist major from the class of 2019 and regular volunteer. "Night to Shine is a night were cliques, judgment and egos are left at the door and we all focus on these incredible people who deserve to have a night where the focus is on them." 

Lynnmarie Landwei-Phillips, director of public relations and director of volunteer and professional services for the Lake County Board of DD/Deepwood, offered several examples of what a positive impact LEC students made for the second year running.

“Ben Phillips, who had a recently repaired ACL, kept pace with a young lady on the spectrum who didn’t sit still all night,” she said. “The football team, with great care and strength, helped move furniture back into place at the end of the night before serenading us while we waited for the shuttle. The Lake Erie students were wonderful!”

Dr. Krammer also applauded the students for their participation.

“I was really impressed so many LEC students stepped up to participate, including many who aren’t majoring in education,” she said. “It makes me proud to work at a college where students from across campus are willing to spend their time helping out with such an inspiring event.”

The event at Painesville Baptist Church involved around 175 volunteers. LEC students involved included: Haley Abraham, Skylar Acuna, Chrissy Aichele, Haley Andersen, Emmaly Badgett, Roberta Benedict, Payton Brownlee, Kimberly Brumagin, Jordan Brunstetter, Michelle Burke, Elizabeth Cornell, Anya Crawford, Maddy Dacri-Kim, Kerry Dietrich, Emily Elkins, Samantha Ellis, Holland Erb, Peyton Frankovich, Jillian Frey, Maura Galanti, Emily Gruber, Allyson Hajnosz, Bethany Haramis, Lacey Harris, Riley Heffron, Deanna Hill, Jacquelyn Ho, Michaela Hoagland, Molly Horvath, Alyssa Johnson, Carley Kandel, Crystal Kedroske, Kayla Kelly, Jennifer Kilgore, Carmeron Kirschner, Brigid Lempko, Mackenzie Levine, Rebecca Mahnich, Taylor Mathis, Meagan Maxwell, Emma Miller, Harmony Moore, Ashley Mundey, Sydney Nemec, Hailey Nielsen, Chloe Nottingham, Hannah Patton, Brett Pauff, Jessica Pepera, Leah Pollifrone, Kristen Redwood, Emily Scheppner, Hannah Silverston, Arin Smith, Morgan Smith, Qui-anna Spence, Anna Spin, Cecilia Spin, Chelsey Warlick, Brittany Wilson, Brooke Yopko, Joseph Aichele, Tyler Berry, Brian Bersee, Wes Birchmeier, Jackson Burdyshaw, Tyler Carrier, Karry Debose, Torrez Edwards, Bryon Fowler, Matthew Haftke, Ibrahim Kanu, Namir Lee, Mitchell Loomis, Jelani Lovett, Richard Meister, Jordan Michael, Samuel Mutemwa, Tyrese Pearson, Ben Phillips, Jason Rogers, Anthony Ruffin, Donovan Smith, Kenneth Smith, Noah Synder, Desmond Stanley, Peter Theodos, Ennis Thomas, Desmon Turnery, Rafael Vieira, Tareeq Welch, Chris Williams, Scott Wright, and Shaun Wright.

For more information on “Night to Shine,” visit https://www.timtebowfoundation.org/ministries/night-to-shine?gclid=CPGLoebH9NECFUa4wAodt40GaA.



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