Second Run the World 5K a growing success


Kayla McMillen / The Kent Stater Kristin Stasiowski, Fabrizio Ricciardelli, and Nicoletta Peluffo pose with the black squirrel mascot after the Run The World 5k Sep. 10 2016. Fabrizio and Nicoletta came to the race representing Florence and the study abroad program in Italy.

Mckenna Corson

The second Run the World 5K run/walk kicked off at Risman Plaza on Saturday, and grew greatly since its first race last year. With over 500 people who participated, $10,000 will be awarded as scholarship money.

Run the World 5K run/walk had its first race back on Sept. 12, 2015. Then, it attracted 400 participants and resulted in $8,000 being awarded as scholarships.

Ed Butch, race director and assistant director of academic advising in the College of Arts and Sciences, was hopeful for this year’s turnout.

“Last year we ended up with right around 400 (people) registered for the first race, which by 5K standard, is a really great first year,” Butch said. “I would love to see 500 this year, but anything over 400 is going to be great.”

Before the race started, Butch was happy to see the increase in participation.

“We have 100 more people than last year,” Butch said. “We are moving in the right direction.”

Kristin Stasiowski, assistant dean of international programs and education abroad for the College of Arts and Sciences, gave a brief speech before the race and announced a partnership between the university’s Delta Zeta sorority.

Delta Zeta is now a signature sponsor of studying abroad scholarships, according to Stasiowski. 

All 500 participants lined up and the Kent Clarks sang the national anthem. The race started at around 8:30 a.m.

Participants had diverse backgrounds and different reasons for signing up for the race.

Brianna Vinas, a junior spanish literature, culture and and translation major, signed up for the race to “give a life-changing experience to other people,” Vinas said. “The Run the World 5K is a great cause and great people put it on.”

Sarah Riedlinger, a freshman visual communication design major, had a more personal reason for signing up for the race.

“I have a friend who came from South Korea to America to study abroad,” Riedlinger said. “I’m hoping to win a $1,000 scholarship so that I can switch it around and study abroad in South Korea.”

An award ceremony was held in the KIVA after the race, celebrating the top three winners in both male and female categories.

Daniel Bullard came in first place altogether with a time of 16:49, and Maureen Moffitt came in first place for women and 14th place overall with a time of 21:41.

Race participants received a T-shirt, medal and food after the race.

Stasiowski, who helped create the race with Butch, was inspired by the turnout.

“I’m moved by what I saw,” Stasiowski said. “People came out, they were having fun, they were laughing, they were cheering on the walkers and runners …The campus put on a great show and showed their colors. I couldn’t be happier.”

Stasiowski said she hopes that participants take a little more out of the race than just a good workout.

“5K races in the athletic world are considered important because it’s often the first time someone challenges themselves to do something a little different,” Stasiowski said. “Whether participants walked or ran, this is a great emotional moment for the campus to come together and support the people who are trying something new.

” If you have the courage to conquer a fear you might have about something like a 5K, ” she said, “then you can work up the courage to think about taking that first step to study abroad and see that it really is only one step after another to get you where you want to be in the world.”

Butch and Stasiowski are optimistic about the future of the Run the World 5K run/walk.

“I see the race getting so big that we might need to expand where we run it,” Stasiowski said. “(This could be) the signature race that Kent State offers.”

The winners of the $1,000 scholarships will be announced onThursday at the Education Abroad Expo at noon. The Expo takes place on the second floor of the Student Center and goes from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Mckenna Corson is the international / grad affairs reporter, contact her at [email protected]