On Feb. 5, Student University Programmers (SUP) held their monthly open mic night. Students lined up in the Prof’s Place, located in Rowan University’s Student Center, to showcase all their conventional and unconventional talents. The show kicked off with incredible up-and-coming artists rapping and singing. As the show went on, students were able to enjoy desserts and refreshments while enjoying their peers’ talents which included singing, rapping, and stand-up comedy. For many people in the audience, one student stood out.
Dan Collins is a senior at Rowan University and his stand-up comedy act is more than unique. Collins took the stage with his comedy routine alongside several of his plushie toys. His performance brought laughter and joy to all the students in attendance as they watched him put his twist on comedy. Collins’s infectious charisma and charm had the audience locked in.
“I do this unique comedy with plushies. I am a person on the Autism spectrum and growing up it was hard for me to connect with people,” senior sports communications major Collins said. “I wanted to do this for people who have disabilities. Mental, intellectual, whatever it may be, so they can have the courage to step out of their comfort zone. I want them to see that it’s ok to do something that they want to do and not what society wants them to be.”
Collins’s drive and purpose are inspiring to many, as he confidently takes the stage and shows vulnerability. He has upcoming shows at the next open mic nights on March 4 and April 8 at the Prof’s Place located in Rowan Student Center at 9 o’clock. On top of that, come out to the student center at midnight on March 22 to see Collins’ big performance and watch his plushies graduate at the neurodiversity open mic night.
Gabriella Rosario, a biochemistry major at Rowan University is the director of technological services for SUP (Student University Programmers). Rosario spoke about the uplifting community that Collins takes part in, recalling her times as a freshman at the university and attending movie nights on her own.
“Going to all of these events just made me feel a sense of community, they have a really good environment. Very friendly and welcoming people,” Rosario said.
Rosario’s words rang true at open mic night. Students took the stage despite their nerves and were met with undying support from the audience. Supporting your peers and local artists is incredibly important, so be sure to check out their upcoming events, as the SUP dates are every other Wednesday.
“Another event that is big that we’re excited for is the Battle of the Bands. That’s March 2nd, at 9 p.m. in the student center pit,” Rosario said.
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