ECE student finds joy in public service via BuckeyeThon 2015
2015 BuckeyeThon dance marathon were a bit stunned. Some burst into tears.
In the end, their efforts outshined their previous fundraising attempts by almost half a million dollars.
Ohio State Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) student Vick Chhabria said Ohio State students came through together for the cause.
“What contributed the most was definitely the number of Ohio State students who stepped up and danced for the kids,” he said. “Over 5,100 students registered to attend and a large portion of the money raised was student fundraised.”
Chhabria said his experience with BuckeyeThon was enough to change his entire outlook on life.
Serving as Vice-President of Advancement for BuckeyeThon this year, he was behind the program’s corporate relations, marketing and high school outreach efforts. He is now slated to serve as BuckeyeThon president next year, leading the charity toward new milestones.
Proceeds from BuckeyeThon go toward helping parents pay for essential medical treatments for their children. The money is also used to purchase items for the Hematology, Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplant Department at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, part of the Children’s Miracle Network, according to organizers.
Chhabria said his time as a student at ECE led him into fundraising, medical imaging research for children, student outreach, top internship programs and numerous leadership opportunities.
“I have found that every experience I have had in the last two and a half years has changed my direction and given me a new insight into my future career choices,” he said, stressing, “I want to pursue a career in the service of others.”
After graduation, Chhabria intends to pursue a Masters in Engineering and Masters in Business Administration, to give him the foundation to someday start his own charity foundation.
“BuckeyeThon confirmed my desire to lead a foundation, it also excited me about healthcare. Spending time with the families whose children have pediatric cancer, the main benefactor of BuckeyeThon's fundraising, has shown me that there is nothing more special than helping a kid get to be a kid,” Chhabria said.
It is the combination of his work in ECE, as well as in the Center for Entrepreneurship and the BOSS Idea pitch contest, that he hopes will make his goals come alive.
“I have taken classes on venture acceleration, learned about venture capitalism, financial models and marketing strategies. I hope to apply this knowledge in parallel with my technical engineering background to become an asset for my future employment opportunities,” he said. “Ohio State has made me consider careers as an engineer, technical consultant, medical professional, researcher, entrepreneur, financial analyst and development officer. Ohio State has given me long lasting friendships, tools to succeed in the professional world, and mentors and advisers who I plan to continue looking to for guidance.”