Recently OTH got to sit down with Matt Driver, the Executive Director of Marketing for the Pediatric AIDS Coalition! He gave us all the details about his club involvement and his life On The Hill, read here!
What is your involvement in PAC?
I began my career on PAC as a freshman on the Design committee, which is responsible for designing all of the promotional materials and apparel for PAC and Dance Marathon. I then became the Director of the Residential Life committee, which outreaches to Hill residents to promote HIV/AIDS awareness and to encourage them to participate in Dance Marathon. Now I am the Executive Director of Marketing, which means I am responsible for all of PAC’s marketing efforts.
What does PAC do?
PAC stands for the Pediatric AIDS Coalition. We do a lot of different things throughout the year, all of which are geared towards raising awareness about Pediatric HIV/AIDS. We work with children in Southern California who have been impacted by HIV/AIDS, and we also promote awareness throughout UCLA through various educational campaigns. Our largest event is called Dance Marathon, which is a 26-hour dance-a-thon that has raised almost $4 million for Pediatric HIV/AIDS research, treatment, and prevention in the past 13 years.
How did the club get started?
PAC began as the “Dance Marathon committee” within SWC. Originally the committee was only around ten students, and they planned and executed the first successful Dance Marathon in Bradley International Hall in 2002. Since then, Dance Marathon moved to Covel Grand Horizon Ballroom, then to Ackerman Grand Union, and now Pauley Pavilion! Our committee has also grown in size – last year we had around 160 students involved in our organization.
How did you get involved in PAC?
My orientation counselor was involved in PAC and told me about it at orientation. I applied because it seemed like an amazing cause and it has definitely changed my life!
How often do you meet? Do you have any upcoming events?
General committee meets every Wednesday, and all of the directors have an additional meeting every weekend. Currently, we are working on transitioning into the next school year, so our next “event” will not take place until Fall Quarter.
How can a student join? Can anyone become a part of PAC?
Anyone can apply to be in PAC! Applications will be released at the end of September and will be due in the first week of October. We encourage all students to get involved with the fight against Pediatric HIV/AIDS!
Why would you recommend someone join PAC?
I would recommend someone to join PAC because we are making a tangible difference in the fight against Pediatric HIV/AIDS, and it’s an amazing feeling knowing that a group of college students can make a change in the world.
Moving on to residential living. In your opinion, what is the best residence hall and why?
Well Dykstra is obviously the best because I live there…
What was your favorite memory of living On The Hill?
Honestly my favorite memory of the Hill was being able to eat grilled tofu for lunch in Covel last year. I really like grilled tofu.
What is your favorite dining hall?
Most embarrassing moment on the hill?
I like to sing really loudly in my room when I’m alone…but I didn’t realize until the end of last year that the walls in the dorms are paper-thin. Whoops!
Thank you for sitting with OTH!
By Jerry Cheung and Laurie Goodman
Photo Credit: Pedatric AIDS Coalition