RTN's sixth annual telethon to raise funds for hurricane relief
Eighty Rowan University students will share their talents as broadcasters, producers, and camera operators for a good cause on Wednesday, April 10, when Rowan Television Network (RTN) presents its sixth annual telethon.
This year, the five-hour broadcast, which runs from 7 p.m.-midnight on Channel 5 on Rowan’s campus, will attempt to raise $7,500 for victims of Hurricane Sandy. Proceeds raised during the telethon will go to Restore the Shore Projects and the Waves for Water New Jersey Sandy Relief Initiative.
Since last fall, when Hurricane Sandy decimated parts of New Jersey and New York, Rowan students, faculty and staff have volunteered with clean-up efforts and raised funds through events as part of Rowan Relief, a University-wide initiative.
The RTN telethon continues that important work, says co-executive producer Vin D’Anton, a senior radio/television/film (RTF) major from Toms River. D’Anton, who grew up in Seaside Heights, said hurricane relief is important to him and many members of the RTN crew who are donating their time to work on the telethon.
D’Anton’s brother lost his home in the storm and his father lost his Lavallette office.
“The telethon means the world to me,” says D’Anton, who is hoping that the telethon surpasses its goal. “If we were able to raise $6,100 for the Make a Wish Foundation last year, what can we do for our own home state?”
The telethon will include special guest interviews, both in studio and on location, live bands, comedy acts and other entertainment, according to senior RTF major Chelsea Dobrucki of Williamstown, who is co-executive producer. Students began planning the telethon in November, she says.
“A lot of us felt very strongly about raising money for Hurricane Sandy relief,” says Dobrucki. “We have 80 people on the crew. Six months of our lives are dedicated to the telethon.”
The telethon, which has raised funds for Make A Wish and Alex’s Lemonade Stand, among other charities, has made a difference in just a few years—and become a real tradition in Rowan’s College of Communication & Creative Arts, Dobrucki notes.
“This is only our sixth year,” says Dobrucki. “The first year, our goal was just $300. We’ve come a long way in a short period of time.”
Although the hurricane happened months ago, victims still need assistance, D’Anton maintains. By volunteering their talents, RTN members are poised to help, he adds.
“The clean-up is not over. And it’s not going to be over for a long time,” he says.
A student-run organization, RTN presents programs on Channel 5 on Rowan’s campus and also a simulcast web stream 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The award-winning network covers live campus events, including athletic competitions, Homecoming, theatrical and variety show performance, and guest speakers.
To watch the telethon or make a contribution, visit www.rtntelethon.com.