Not every Homecoming court couple is taking the typical Lion Shrine picture this week.
Homecoming court couple John Boston and Jessica Maynor stood in the fountain at the Penn State Arboretum, laughing as their clothes got soaked and their hair was drenched.
The two of the homecoming nominees said they wanted to do something out of the ordinary to properly represent their “quirky” personalities. And they didn’t just want to stand in front of some lush landscape they found beautiful — they wanted to go swimming.
Maynor’s silk shirt got soaked and stuck to her, as the water reached a little past Boston’s knees, soaking the hem of his shorts.
After splashing around for a few minutes, with Boston even picking up Maynor in the fountain, an arboretum representative asked the couple to get out of the fountain.
Known to their friends as “Jessie” and “Boston,” the couple said they didn’t know each other until they were paired up for homecoming court, but then realized they were a great fit.
“I think we are both unusual picks for court,” Maynor said. “We both bring a lot of different things to the table and we have a lot of fun together.”
Maynor (senior-crime, law and justice) is a member of the Lionettes dance team and the only candidate representing athletics on the Homecoming court.
She said she loves that she can represent athletics because it is not something the dance team has always been able to do, but alumni worked hard over the last few years to allow the team to be a part of athletics at the university.
“The biggest thing for me for being named part of the court was making the alumni proud,” Maynor said. “I probably got on court mostly because of the dance team and my involvement with that and that is probably a testament to how [the alumni] built us up and it shows how far [the team] has progressed.”
Boston (senior-agriculture systems management), who said he wants to work for an agricultural machinery company in the future, said he believes he is a very “different and varied” individual — which is what he believes makes him stand out from the rest of the court.
He is also involved on campus and is a member of clubs some students may not recognize.
“He is really well rounded,” Boston’s former Penn State Interfraternity Council/Panhellenic Dance Marathon family relations co-captain Patrick Gilbert, Class of 2013, said. “He has his hand in so many different things going on. He is a very busy guy.”
Boston is a member of the Bass Fishing club , Trap and Skeet Club , Club Croquet , current THON merchandise captain and former THON family relations captain and brother of Theta Chi.
“I like everything; I get along with everyone,” Boston said. “I don’t think I have met someone I don’t like or couldn’t get along with because I have either done everything or am in the current process of doing it.”
Maynor, who hopes to pursue a career in social work for a couple of years before applying to law school, said she believes the dance team has given her many opportunities and the way the team helps students has “inspired” her. The connections she has made with the dance team are “irreplaceable,” she said.
She said that she hopes that she has used her commitment to the dance team for the benefit of the university as a whole and has embraced it in the best way possible for the last three years.
She also said the dance team has given her the platform to be a role model to others — something one of her friends agrees with.
“She is an awesome friend, fun loving person, super organized and a motherly figure to a lot of people; very much like a big sister,” Brooke Piccione (junior-advertising and public relations) said.
Maynor’s commitment to the Lionettes is similar to Boston’s love and dedication to THON.
As a freshman, he said he saw THON as something he was required to do because of his fraternity. He canned every weekend, turned in his THON envelopes on time and that was it, he said.
It wasn’t until he made the decision to stay the entire duration of the dance marathon and was participating in the line dance early Sunday morning when he had a realization with the help from a little boy standing behind him, he said.
“I heard this little voice behind me and I turn around and I see this little chubby kid. He had no hair and was really pale and he was just singing loudly and he had this smile on his face, and I think I will always remember that smile,” Boston said. “That was the moment I knew that I was going to do something great. It showed me the love that THON and this university has for each other.”