Tag Archives: Millersville University

Case Study: Empowering Confidence, Girls on the Run at Millersville University

Girls on the Run (GOTR) is an inspiring program encouraging unity, confidence, and healthy behavior in young girls in Lancaster and Lebanon Counties, Pennsylvania. The mission of GOTR Lancaster is to help girls of all abilities gain confidence and life skills. They also offer engaging, research-based programs that empower participants to see the possibilities, embrace their inner strength, increase their physical activity, as well as fearlessly stand up for others and themselves. GOTR leads life-changing lessons that combine physical exercise with vital life skills, such as friendship-building and empathy-expressing.

Every season ends with a celebration of accomplishments and positive effects on the community. The annual Millersville University 5K celebration is the high point of this organization’s fall season. With the encouragement and assistance of MU’s sports teams, clubs, and sororities, athletes in grades 3 through 8 learn the excitement of crossing the finish line. This event is not only an occasion to test the strength but also community and teamwork.

Interview with Jennifer West, Girls on the Run Executive Director, and Jes Wilson, 5K Manager

Tell us about your organization and the events that you have held at Millersville University.

Girls on the Run is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit that inspires individuals of all abilities to discover, build, and grow their self-confidence. Together, they experience a sense of belonging and connection as a team. Over 500 volunteer coaches each year facilitate lessons that blend physical activity with life skill development, including managing emotions, fostering friendships, and expressing empathy. At the end of the season, the team completes a Community Impact Project and a 5K together, which provides a tangible sense of accomplishment and sets a confident mindset into motion. GOTR holds a celebratory 5K every fall at Millersville University where many athletic teams, clubs, and sororities take part in cheering the girls on throughout the course and manage all our parking that day!

Girls on the Run starting line

What have been some of your goals with sponsoring the various events? 

The main goal is to create a safe and successful event so that our participants who are in grades 3 – 8 have the opportunity to cross the finish line feeling supported, encouraged, and realize that the finish line is just the beginning! Another goal is having a supportive community partner as we have found in Millersville University.

Happy participants

What have been the successes that you have realized through your campus events? 

We have found the successes for many of our participants extend way beyond finishing a 5K for the first time. We heard from a parent who ran with his daughter at Millersville University that she always told him she didn’t want to go to college but after running the 5K at Millersville University and seeing all of the athletic teams and clubs there supporting everyone, she now wants to go to college and she wants to go to Millersville University!  Another huge success is sharing the big picture of community with all of our participants and family.  They can see what the community looks like firsthand with the way that GOTR and Millersville University work together for the event.

Participant running in action

What can you share regarding the event logistics that have helped make your events successful?

Millersville is very accommodating in everything that we need for the day. We hold several meetings before the event with a committee made up of GOTR staff, Millersville University staff, and the Millersville University Police to work through the logistics of the event to ensure a safe and successful event. Communication, planning, and the engagement of the university overall make this event a huge success! Between participants and spectators, there are about 3,000 who come to the campus for our event.

Race day morning at Pucillo Field

Why do you decide to come back to Millersville University for your events? 

The support we receive starts with the President of Millersville University, to the athletic director, all the way down to the students and concession stand staff. The way the students come out to support our event takes it to the next level and our GOTR participants and families really enjoy the extra level of support and encouragement.  Each fall after the 5K, we hear from so many families that their girls loved seeing all of the college students there to cheer them on.  They feel supported and encouraged to do their best and to keep going when it feels hard.


What general advice do you have for other groups that are planning events for their organization?

Don’t hesitate! Reach out to them today! Millersville University has created such an amazing all-around community that is very willing to work with organizations to provide a safe and successful event.  We are already planning and can’t wait for our next 5K there this fall!

In essence, the partnership between Girls on the Run and Millersville University exemplifies the transformative impact of collaboration and support. Through shared goals, meticulous planning, and unwavering encouragement, GOTR continues to empower girls and cultivate a community of confidence and camaraderie. As the next 5K event approaches, the anticipation is palpable, fueled by the promise of another memorable gathering at Millersville University.

To learn more about Girls on the Run and their inspiring initiatives, visit their website and follow them on social media:

*Photos courtesy of Girls on the Run

Case Study: MidAtlantic Fiber Association (MAFA) at Millersville University

MidAtlantic Fiber Association (MAFA) is a vibrant all-volunteer non-profit organization dedicated to fostering creativity and community within the fiber arts. With over 55 local fiber arts guilds spanning from Connecticut to North Carolina, as well as over 200 individual associate members, MAFA serves as a hub for enthusiasts and artisans alike. Their signature event, a biennial four-day fiber arts conference, has found its home at Millersville University since 2015, offering a diverse array of hands-on workshops, exhibits, and activities that celebrate the rich tapestry of fiber arts.

Interviewee: Margaret Briggs, MAFA Conference Committee

Tell us about your organization and the events that you have held at Millersville University.

MidAtlantic Fiber Association (MAFA) is an all-volunteer non-profit fiber arts organization. Our members are 55 local fiber arts guilds located from Connecticut to North Carolina, as well as over 200 individual associate members. MAFA’s signature event is a biennial four-day fiber arts conference, which we have held at Millersville University since 2015, only missing 2021 for the pandemic. Recent conferences have had over 500 attendees, and we usually offer over three dozen two-and-a-half-day hands-on fiber arts workshops – think weaving on looms, making yarn on spinning wheels, dyeing yarn, and fiber, felting, basket making, and sewing – as well as events and activities like a keynote session, open studio tour, vendor hall, and exhibits.

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What have been some of your goals with sponsoring the various events?

Our conferences provide an opportunity for fellowship among our attendees, as well as a chance to take workshops with nationally and regionally known instructors. We also host exhibits of attendees’ fiber art, special exhibits, book signings, a tour of all our workshops, and a vendor hall with all sorts of fiber, yarn, equipment, tools, and other goodies.

Retrieved from @mafafiber Instagram, from @frittelli_lockwood

What have been the successes that you have realized through your campus events?

We have had several very successful events at Millersville University, based on favorable reviews from students and instructors, and a positive financial outcome for our organization. The location is ideal geographically since we have members traveling from primarily the East Coast, but also New England, the Midwest, and Canada. The size of the campus is just right for our group, and a college campus is a more cost-effective solution for us compared to other conference centers. Since our attendee demographic skews mostly an age range of 55+, the accessibility of campus buildings is also a plus.

Mafa 2023 Retrieved from @mafafiber Instagram, from @nancyeverham

What can you share regarding the event logistics that have helped make your events successful?

On our end, communication is key, as well as having a detailed plan and a dedicated committee of volunteers to do the work. We have run our conferences since 1981, so we have a lot of history on what our attendees have come to expect, yet we try to innovate a bit each time too.

Retrieved from @mafafiber Instagram, from @frittelli_lockwood

Why do you decide to come back to Millersville University for your events?

For us, returning to Millersville University means coming back to a location and facilities that are familiar to our conference committee as well as our attendees. Knowing the layout of the residence halls, dining hall, Student Memorial Center, and academic buildings makes it much easier for us to plan our workshops and events, and to communicate instructions to our attendees.


MAFA 2019 Trailer

What general advice do you have for other groups that are planning events for their organization?

Some advice we’d give is to use an online project management platform such as Basecamp, Slack, or Teams to manage event planning and coordination. Be sure all public-facing positions have an organization email address, so that correspondence isn’t lost if personnel changes. We find that shared documents (e.g. Google Drive) cut down on confusion and missed updates. Since our planners are spread all over the East Coast, video conference meetings have helped us be able to better put names with faces when we all arrive on-site (not the case when we used to do everything by conference call), and to share screen to all look at things together.

In summary, the partnership between MAFA and Millersville University exemplifies the synergy of collaboration and passion for the fiber arts. Through meticulous planning, innovative programming, and a commitment to excellence, MAFA continues to inspire creativity and foster connections within the fiber arts community. As we look forward to our next conference, we remain grateful for the support and partnership of Millersville University in providing a nurturing environment for our attendees to explore, learn, and create.

If you’re interested to find out some more about MAFA check them out on:

*Images and videos courtesy of MAFA

Explore Millersville University’s Impressive Venue Offerings

Are you, your business, or your organization on the hunt for the perfect venue to host your next conference or event? Look no further than Millersville University’s campus. We offer a diverse array of venues to suit your needs. Whether you’re planning a large-scale conference, a sporting event/camp, an academic symposium, or a performance showcase, we have you covered.

In this post, we’ll take a closer look at some of the standout venues available for conference services, categorized into four core areas: Athletic Facilities, Academic Facilities, Auxiliary Services, and Performing Arts Centers.

Athletic Facilities:

Pucillo Gymnasium: Pucillo Gymnasium is equipped with modern audiovisual equipment and more than enough seating to host a wide range of events such as graduations, wrestling matches, basketball competitions, volleyball competitions, and many more. The gym can accommodate up to 3,000 guests.

Anttonen Natatorium: Looking to make a splash? Anttonen Natatorium provides facilities for aquatic events and presentations along with seating for 500 spectators, eight (8) available lanes, lighting, and timing devices. Consider holding your swimming event here. Whether you need aquatic training, swim meets, or swim practices we are here for you.

Chryst Field at Biemesderfer Stadium: Home to our football, field hockey, lacrosse, and track teams, Biemesderfer Stadium presents a perfect venue for outdoor events, providing a capacity of over 5,000 attendees. With its well-maintained turf and stadium seating, Chryst Field offers the ideal setting for football camps, lacrosse, field hockey camps, and more sporting events. Additionally, the stadium features an 8-lane polyurethane track around the main turf field, suitable for track and field events. Other amenities include a press box, a fully automated scoreboard, and access to the concession stand’s offerings. Beyond sports training and graduations, the facility’s lighting caters to evening events, ensuring a great experience for all attendees.

Pucillo Field: Pucillo Field is our turf soccer stadium home to our men’s and women’s soccer teams. It is a dynamic field space tailored to accommodate a diverse range of sports and activities, making it the perfect choice for multi-sport camps or specialized training programs. This facility is open for all sports camps to utilize, combining various aspects seamlessly.

Additional Outdoor Athletic Venues: The following outdoor spaces are accessible for recreational activities, team sports, or outdoor workshops: McComsey Outdoor Basketball Courts, Cooper Park, Seaber Softball Stadium, McComsey Tennis Courts, and Brooks Field.

Ropes Course: The Ropes Course offers a diverse array of activities tailored for both individual and group engagement, accommodating participants of all ages, physical abilities, and skill levels. Featuring both high and low Ropes Courses, this facility fosters personal and team development through experiential learning, emphasizing leadership, communication, problem-solving, and coaching skills, among others.

Academic Facilities:

Our academic buildings present a wide range of lecture halls, classrooms, and seminar rooms, all furnished with up-to-date technology to enhance presentations, workshops, and scholarly dialogues. From cozy, intimate settings accommodating 10 individuals to spacious lecture halls capable of seating up to 175, the facilities we offer cater to various group sizes and educational needs.

Auxiliary Services:

Dining Halls: Energize your attendees with some meals from our dining halls, or reach out to us about catering services to meet the standards of your event. Our different dining options include the Upper Deck, the Galley, and the Anchor. The Upper Deck offers all-you-care-to-enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner experiences. Meanwhile, the Galley and Anchor provide convenient retail dining grab-and-go options, including made-to-order pizza, deli sandwiches, soups, and freshly baked items. We’re also can cater to dietary preferences, offering gluten-free and vegetarian selections to accommodate all guests.

Housing: Need housing accommodations for out-of-town guests during the summer months? Millersville University’s on-campus housing options provide comfortable lodgings just a stroll away from event venues. Our on-campus residence halls are available throughout the summer, offering a distinctive lodging experience for your group. With over 2,000 beds available, we offer a range of accessible options, including ADA-compliant and family-friendly rooms. Expect an array of amenities, from flexible check-in/check-out options, complimentary Wi-Fi service, and round-the-clock support from live-in, residential staff. Additional features such as common areas, elevator access, and electronic building access for safety are readily available. Linen services are also available upon request, ensuring a seamless stay with convenient access to the dining hall and the Student Memorial Center.

Student Memorial Center (SMC): From versatile meeting rooms to inviting lounges, the SMC provides an array of spaces ideal for breakout sessions, networking occasions, or social gatherings. Explore our Multipurpose Room (MPR), featuring a 25-foot high ceiling and versatile court configurations suitable for staging setups for speakers and screens. Take advantage of Club D’Ville, customized room layouts, and AV capabilities available in every space. Whether you’re hosting a meeting, conference, or special event, the SMC offers adaptable spaces designed to meet your needs with flair and functionality.

Performing Arts Centers:

The Winter Visual & Performing Arts: Showcase your creativity in our contemporary facility, offering a blend of studios, galleries, and performance spaces tailored for concerts, and theatrical productions. Whether you’re planning a concert, audition, musical performance, or play, our venue has you covered.

 Explore our Art Gallery: An ideal setting for showcasing visual arts through exhibitions and displays. Whether you’re an artist seeking to share your work or an art enthusiast looking for inspiration, our gallery provides a dynamic platform to engage with diverse artistic expressions. Let us know if you are interested in putting on your art show because Millersville University would be the perfect space to do it!

Whether it’s a conference you are planning, a seminar, a workshop, or a special athletic event, the Millersville University campus offers an impressive selection of venues to bring your vision to life. With great facilities, convenient amenities, close distances to major highways, and a dedicated events team ready to assist you every step of the way, your next event is sure to be a success. Contact our event planning department today to start planning your unforgettable event on campus!

Contact our events team today to start planning your event at Millersville University. Contact our Assistant Director of Conference Services and he will be in touch with you shortly. You can reach him at 717-871-5938 or Michael.Kurland@millersville.edu.

You can also fill out an event request form using the following link below: https://www.millersville.edu/housing/conference-services/event-request.php