For as long as she can remember — and then some — Pam Lins had her heart set on suiting up for the official dance team of the University of Illinois.
There’s photographic evidence to prove it.
“Ever since I was a little girl, I had dreamed of being an Illinette,” says McDonald’s director of accounting and reporting. “There are even pictures of me in Illinette uniforms at the age of 5.”
The dual-degree Gies College of Business grad won’t soon forget the feeling of finding out she’d made the squad — as a freshman, no less.
Or what came next.
“After the initial excitement settled down and long, 12-hour-a-day summer practices were complete, football season had finally arrived. I will never forget the rush I felt performing at Memorial Stadium for the first time. That was a defining moment for me, which solidified in my mind that hard work truly does pay off.
“Years and years of practice and hard work dancing allowed me to have not just this one moment, but hundreds of moments on the dance team that I will cherish forever,” says Lins, a member of the Gies College of Business’ accountancy advisory board.
“Both of my parents and my older brother went to Illinois and I remember feeling honored to continue the Illinois tradition for them in a very special way.”