When Jona Hall realized that Penn State World Campus students didn’t have their own committee to participate in Penn State Homecoming celebrations, she knew she had to do something. 

Hall immediately got to work to form the Penn State World Campus Homecoming Committee. This year will be the committee’s first time participating in Penn State Homecoming, which is scheduled for the weekend of October 22. 

“It’s difficult to have ‘Together, State prevails’ if there’s no World Campus involvement,” said Hall, referring to the 2021 Homecoming theme.

Jona Hall

Hall graduated in summer 2021 with a bachelor’s degree in digital journalism and media and serves as the committee’s alumni representative. Ariel Hinojos, a senior and law and society major, serves as the executive director. 

Hall and Hinojos are both traveling to University Park to walk in the parade with other students who comprise the committee’s executive board. They said they’re looking forward to seeing all their hard work pay off and meeting their peers in person. 

Ariel Hinojos

“I’ve met a lot of students who I work with on a daily basis, not face-to-face but in Zoom, so it’s nice to have that personal aspect put into online learning,” said Hinojos. 

The committee has planned several virtual events during the week leading up to homecoming that Penn State World Campus students can attend: an alumni panel, a Penn State traditions workshop, a pumpkin carving contest, and more.  

The committee also planned in-person events for World Campus students who plan to travel to University Park for the weekend. Students can attend a World Campus Tailgate Booth, and a campus tour and ice cream social will be hosted by the Alumni Association. 

The Penn State World Campus Homecoming Committee court has ten nominees on the undergraduate court and six nominees on the graduate, alumni, and faculty courts. 

Two winners from the student court will be presented with the For the Glory Award at an in-person celebration at University Park on October 22. 

Caitlyn DeBlaay

Caitlyn DeBlaay, the committee’s court relations director, said working with the Homecoming Court nominees has been a humbling experience. 

“The amount of outreach that each of these court members contributes to World Campus is astonishing,” said DeBlaay. “Students can be successful leaders in a virtual setting, and our court is a clear representation of that.” 

Visit the Penn State World Campus Homecoming Committee website for more information on upcoming events.