KENNESAW, Ga. - The new Children's Healthcare of Atlanta Outpatient Care Center at Town Center in Kennesaw is a welcome addition to Cobb County.
And this state-of-the-art facility is here in part thanks to a student organization at Kennesaw State University called "KSU Miracle" and its president, Ryann Miller.
"I was leading over 1,500 people, and in charge of almost a quarter of a million dollars in philanthropy, and I was taking 19 credits hours, and I had a job," Miller said, laughing.
This busy psychology major heads the largest student philanthropy organization on KSU's campus.
"We raise money all year for Children's Healthcare of Atlanta and at the end of the year we do a 12-hour dance marathon where we hang out with kids from the hospital," she explained.
And most importantly, they dance.
KSU Miracle recently hosted their most successful fundraiser to date – the 12-hour dance marathon.
On their feet for 12 hours, you'd think it would be a challenge.
"When you have miracle kids there who are sitting in wheelchairs and they'll never stand a day in their life, It's easy to stand for 12 hours," Miller said. "And after that 12 you want to stand for another 12 and then another 12."
Then it was time for the big reveal.
"This past year our goal was $300,000," she said. "We raised $330,000."
That's far exceeding their goal thanks to hard work, dedication, and support and donations from the community.
The money allows Children's Healthcare of Atlanta to build facilities like this new campus right across the street from KSU's stadium.
"We've funded the new Town Center location of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta. So we actually have a series of rooms in the hospital that are named after our program," Miller said. "So all of our money gets donated right here into our backyard to this facility."
That's the KSU Miracle Rehabilitation Treatment Rooms and the KSU Miracle Sports Medicine Gym.
Ryann's motivation is anchored in family ties. She has 11 brothers and sisters, including seven who are adopted and have special needs.
So she knows first-hand how important it is to have a hospital like CHOA nearby.
"I know there's people like my siblings who will never be able to have the opportunities like I have, so if I'm given the chance, I'm going to go for it," she said.
And thanks to the students of KSU Miracle – and a lot of dancing – they're leaving a lasting legacy that will benefit countless families for years to come.