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Onward State Gives Thanks 2022

Happy Thanksgiving, folks! All of us at Onward State hope you enjoy the day no matter how you’re celebrating.

Our staff is thankful for all sorts of things this year, including Drew Allar, our pets, grilled cheese, and Taylor Swift tickets.

Aidan Conrad

Every day, I’m reminded how thankful I am to be living the life I am. The opportunity to work with an amazing staff at my dream university is what you dream of as a kid. I’m also thankful for my amazing support system — my family and friends. Finally, I’m thankful for my best friend, Adobe Photoshop, for always being there late at night for me when I’m trying to have some fun.

Alysa Rubin

It’s difficult to sum up what I’m thankful for in a little paragraph, but I’m thankful for so much. As always, I’m incredibly grateful for the continued love and support of my family through the highs, lows, and everything in between. I truly couldn’t do it without you. I’m thankful that my furry daughter, Comet, came into my life almost a year ago, and I’m thankful that my dog, Cody, accepts that I’m now a cat mom and still loves me. I’m thankful for my friends, old and new, for filling my life with love and laughs. I’m so lucky to be surrounded by such a brilliantly genuine group of people. I’m thankful for my wonderful boyfriend and his family. I’m thankful for the town of Cotuit, Massachusetts, and all of the memories I made there this summer. I’m thankful for the Hills and the Nunemachers for being my family away from home. I’m thankful for my camera and every adventure it’s taken me on, from State College, Cape Cod, New Orleans, Williamsport, and Dirt Track to Ann Arbor, Piscataway, and more. I’m thankful to be a Penn Stater and a student here. I’m especially thankful for this blog. I wouldn’t be who I am today without Onward State. Thank you, OS, for letting me live my dreams and introducing me to some of my best friends.

I’m also very thankful for this year as a whole. I’m thankful for its challenges, difficulties, and disagreements. I’m thankful for the lessons I’ve learned and the knowledge that I’ve gained. I’m thankful for the highs, lows, losses, and gains that this year brought. Here’s to another happy, healthy, and promising year filled with opportunity, growth, gratitude, and love.

Alyssa Wagner

I’m thankful that it’s finally Penn State basketball season.

Anna Wiggins

I’m thankful for headache hats, Grammarly, overpriced hoodies, lip balm, Moe’s, groundhogs, Dr. Pepper, my friends, Meghan Lamm, and my mom.

Annie Kubiak

First and foremost, I’m thankful for my parents, who continue to support me and my passions in college. I’m also extremely thankful for all my friends, old and new, who have stuck with me. I’m thankful for my experience studying abroad this summer and for the opportunities that have come from my internship (thanks Dani). As always, I’m thankful for chicken baskets, bagel sandwiches, Mackenna Yount, Microsoft Excel, Penn State wrestling, and Penn State hockey (even though it continues to give me heart attacks in the third period) for bringing me endless joy. Last but not least, I’m extremely thankful for Onward State and every staff member, as I would not be where I am today without them. Keep slaying, blog <3

Ashley Connington

This year, I’m thankful for my family and friends, especially my dad who got us Taylor Swift tickets. I’m extra thankful for my friends, Brie and Hannah, and my first friend I made at Penn State, Avery. I can’t believe I’m able to be a part of Onward State and am so thankful to be here with such amazing people. And of course, I’m also thankful for Saquon Barkley, Harry Styles, burrito bowls, squishmallows, and Mason Mount.

Brendan Wagner

I’m thankful for the health of my family and friends through another crazy year, for the Lord, our savior, as he continues to watch down over us, and for new friends I have met at school, especially those in OS. Last but not least, I am thankful for the Pittsburgh Steelers, cheeseburgers, and the occasional cigar.

Camryn O’Rourke

I am really thankful for all those who are in my life and have helped me get through this year: my family, friends, boyfriend, and dog. I am also really thankful for good health and opportunities that have been given to me. I feel really lucky to be living the life that I am.

Charlie Pegler

Obviously, I am thankful for my loving friends and family who would do anything for me. However, this Thanksgiving, I’d like to thank Saquon Barkley, Podward State, Gabe Angieri (when he has a mustache) (Editors Note: He currently has one), Aaron Judge re-signing with the Yankees, and going 1-0 this week and every week.

CJ Gill

I am extremely thankful for my family. They are my biggest supporters and are always encouraging me to follow my dreams. I’m also very thankful for the group of friends I have made here at Penn State. They truly have made my first semester an absolute blast, and I am so lucky they are in my life. I will always be thankful for the late-night food from El Jefe’s or Sheetz. Those burritos can turn any night into a good night.

Claire Sube

I’m very thankful for life at the moment. My family and friends are all so very amazing and healthy. Also, Penn State has been treating me well, and this fall semester has been a good one. I’m also very thankful for Onward State to be given this amazing experience.

Colleen Nersten

I am thankful for mini things — mini Cokes, mini containers of Vaseline, mini Band-Aids. I am especially thankful for things that shouldn’t be mini but sometimes are — mini bananas, mini doors, mini spoons. Mini things are so incredibly cute, and society forgets that sometimes.

Connor Krause

This year, I’m thankful for health, happiness, family, and friends. With the pandemic almost entirely in the rearview mirror, it’s been fantastic to have such a busy fall while enjoying so many new and exciting experiences. From covering unique events for the blog to road tripping to Ann Arbor in a car full of dejected fans, I couldn’t be more grateful to have such a great support system around me. Here’s to more of the same in 2023!

Dana Nunemacher

This year, I am thankful for so much. I am so thankful for the family that I have back home. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without their love and support every single day. I am thankful for my friends, both old and new. You are all the reason I spend my days laughing and feeling so loved. I am thankful for my sorority, Gamma Sigma Sigma. It sounds so cheesy for me to say that, but I seriously can’t imagine my college experience without the fun that we have had in our tiny little chapter. Onward State, I am thankful for you. You gave me my best friend, Alysa. Alysa, I am thankful for you, your kindness, and your photography skills…still obsessed with my graduation photos.

Penn State Homecoming, it has been over a month since Homecoming 2022, and I am STILL obsessed with you. I was gifted a lifetime of memories and 15 amazing friends. Next, even though we just met in August, I am so thankful for my roommates, Autumn, Kayla, and Sara (plus our bonus roommate, Madison). Thanks for letting me eat your leftovers! I am thankful for Gaff pitchers and my favorite pitcher-drinking partner, Anthony. As I prepare to graduate next month, I am thankful for the past versions of me that have gotten me here — the girl that had a dream of coming to Penn State and the girl that stayed up wayyyy too late doing homework over these past three years. As per tradition, finally, I am thankful for Dunkin’ iced tea and our farmers that are currently working to feed us.

Devon Craley

I’m most thankful for my family and friends. I know that seems obvious, but everything that I’ve done so far in life can be traced back to those two. All the opportunities I’ve had are because of my family and friends. I can’t possibly name everyone but they definitely know who they are. I’m thankful for all my friends and family that have helped me get to where I am today.

Emily Grill

I’m thankful for my college friends because without them, Penn State would not be home to me. They make life so fun, and I’m so grateful for all the friendships I’ve made over the years here. Also, quick shoutout to Chick-fil-A — love you & wouldn’t eat half the time without you <3. And of course, my family, love you guys so much, too!

Erin Conaway

Today, and every day, I am thankful for my friends, family, and all those who support me. Being a first-year student at Penn State, I have already grown so much and am grateful for what the future holds. Most importantly, I am especially thankful for the water fountain on the second floor in the Hosler Building that always fulfills my need for ice-cold water at 10:10 a.m.

Evan Halfen

As always, I’m thankful for my beyond-supportive family, my sister Lily, my friends at home and Penn State, and my two puppies, Butterscotch and Wentzy (named after Carson Wentz). I’m not going to lie, this semester was quite the rollercoaster. From almost passing out at the first home football game to getting hit (more like love-tapped) by a car, I somehow managed to ~almost~ survive this past year. And it’s all thanks to everyone I’m lucky to have in my life.

Frankie Marzano

I am thankful for a lot of things in life. The first thing that comes to mind is my family, especially my parents. I’m thankful for Drew Allar and Penn State football. I’m also thankful for the New York Rangers, Adam Fox, the New York Mets, Steve Cohen, and Meatball Monday. I’m thankful for my best friends (Alex, Gabe, Jesse, Andrew) and my fellow Men of MAcc, especially Chrissy Shanks.

Most of all, I’m thankful for this blog and the group of people that help run it. The blog has changed my life in so many different ways and joining it has been, by far, the best decision I’ve made in college.

Gabe Angieri

To keep it short, I’m thankful for my family, specifically my parents and brothers. I wouldn’t be where I am today without you guys. I’m thankful for my girlfriend, Casey, whose endless support helps keep me going and means a ton to me. Additionally, thank you to all of my friends. I love you all.

Lastly, I’m thankful for Onward State. This blog means so much to me, and I’m honored and privileged to have the responsibility of leading our talented staff.

Grace Cunningham

This year, I’m thankful for sandwiches, Mule Time, Colleen Nersten, and having sandwiches during Mule Time with Colleen Nersten. I’m also thankful for pranks and hijinks.

Gracie Mullan

This Thanksgiving, I’m thankful for my family, friends, and those who believe in me. Your support and love mean the most. Thank you.

Hailey Stutzman

As always, I am thankful for family, friends, and the food on my plate. I’m also grateful for the blog, and of course, Podward State. Thank you to everyone who listens to our podcast. We have so much fun creating each episode. Lastly, I am thankful for Wawa soft pretzels, my dog Gracie, and the Philadelphia Eagles.

Haylee Yocum

This year, it feels like I have a lot more to be thankful for than usual. First and foremost, I am thankful for my family for always being there for me and encouraging me. I’m thankful for my boyfriend, who never fails to make me laugh when I need it the most, and I am even thankful for PHYS 250/251 because they brought me to my best friend, Hannah. Of course, I’m also thankful for OS for giving me a place to be creative and have fun when I’ve had enough of my STEM courses for the day. 

On a lighter note, I’d like to extend my gratitude to Taylor Swift’s Midnights, iced coffee, my cat Simon who loves nobody, CATA bus drivers, Taco Bell, and the imminent downfall of Ticketmaster!

Jack Scott

I’m thankful for my family, both at home and at Penn State. I’m also thankful to be a part of something like OS. I’ve met some really cool people and done some really cool things. Finally, I’m thankful for Kaytron Allen and Nick Singleton. Thanks!

Jake Musmanno

First and foremost, I am thankful for my two amazing parents and my younger brother who support me from back home. There are no words to express how much I appreciate everything they have done for me this year and throughout my entire life. Secondly, I am thankful for my friends, both here at Penn State and the ones back home. As the saying goes, friends are your chosen family. Fortunately for me, I feel this is exactly my case. I am so incredibly lucky to have made friends with some amazing people in just two years at Penn State. I cannot imagine my life without them.

As for my friends back home, I am not surprised by how easy it is to come home from college and reconnect like we never left. Third-grade us would be so proud. Lastly, I am thankful for Penn State and the many opportunities it has provided me thus far. Whether it is Onward State, ServeState, or Sapphire, Penn State has allowed me to do the things I love with great people. I couldn’t be more thankful.

Jillian Wesner

I’m thankful for my two orange cats, Lennon and McCartney, who share approximately one brain cell (on a good day), Harry Styles’ entire discography, and my 14-hour ”sad” playlist on Spotify.

Joe Lister

I’m very grateful for how my second year of college has panned out. I’ve kept the friends that I wanted to keep and made new ones along the way. My roommates and I have gotten along extraordinarily well, and I’m very happy about that. Of course, I’m incredibly thankful for my family and how they’ve supported me through the years. I’m looking forward to the end of 2022, and hope that I can close out the year strong and well.

Keeley Lamm

This Thanksgiving, I’m feeling extra grateful for my family, my pals at Onward State, grilled cheese, and Lowjack.

Kyra Cunningham

Aside from the typical family, friends, health, and shelter, I am extremely thankful that CC Peppers has stayed open another year. No matter what I am going through, I know that a hot buffalo chicken wrap with ranch, no tomatoes, and a side of old bay fries can get me through anything. I also appreciate that I am at a university where the opportunities are endless. Being able to work toward my degree while expressing one of my biggest passions through this blog has been unreal. Most of all, though, I am thankful for my ability to secure tickets to both Taylor Swift shows in Pittsburgh. I have invested a lot in experiences this year, and this has paid dividends in the happiness I feel looking back on 2022. Shoutout Kelle and John, as I wouldn’t be able to do anything without you guys. Thank you! <3

Larkin Richards

2022 was the best year of my life, so I need to be thankful for the year in its entirety.

I’m most thankful for my mom and Mikey Jo, my best friend/boyfriend Douglas, my three amazing dogs, our kick-ass blog, and my incredible friends who never give up on me. I’m extremely thankful for my health and the life I get to look forward to.

Here’s to a holiday where I get to appreciate all of the amazing things that make me Larkin.

Lizzie Palmieri

Like always, I’m thankful for the most important thing in my life: my family. My mom, sister, Emily, and dad are my favorite people in the world, also including our 18-year-old Italian Greyhound puppy, Macaroni. I’m thankful for each high of life we’ve lived together and how close we still are today. They’re my whole life, and I’m forever grateful for their love and support every day of the year. Also, a huge shoutout is necessary for the Onward State folks, Diet Pepsi, and my roommates, Renée, Lilly, and Syd, for an awesome time at State. These three things might be in no particular order, but I’m just so grateful for each one making life that much better.

Luke Brown

I am thankful for my friends and family. Each day, they inspire me to keep going and achieve my dreams, as well as give me enough joy and happiness to last a lifetime. As of today, I am also very thankful for Eagles football giving me eight weeks of smiles and only one week of sadness. Lastly, as any Penn State football fan would say, I am extremely thankful for Drew Allar, as he keeps my hopes and dreams of beating Michigan and Ohio State alive! We Are.

Mackenna Yount

This Thanksgiving, there’s so much for me to be thankful for in my life. I am thankful for warm cups of coffee, colorful sunrises, Annie Kubiak :), my favorite foods, finding the time to take a minute to breathe, and this blog and all the amazing things we do here. There are also the things that I am thankful for beyond expression — my family, my best friends, the support systems I have in my life, my beautiful home and the mountains, and this beautiful life we’re all trudging through. Don’t take any of it for granted, folks.

Mara McKeon

This year, I am especially thankful for my friends and family. I have the privilege of living with three amazing roommates, Sarah, Emily, and Meghan, who make my day, every day. I also have an amazing support system of my friends and my boyfriend back home who I lean on so much. Most importantly, I am so thankful for my parents and my sister who constantly believe in me and push me to be the best version of myself.

I wouldn’t be able to talk about thanks if I didn’t mention the amazing platform that is Onward State. The amount of work that each person puts in daily is incredible, and I am so thankful to be a part of it. I can’t wait to see where the rest of my college career and the rest of 2022 takes me.

Marie Moyer

I’m thankful for my family, friends, and boyfriend who have definitely seen me at my worst this year and witnessed lots of tears and stress. I’m so thankful for my advisors, Jamey Perry and Kyrie Harding, who were determined to help me succeed and share the stressful burden of me spontaneously switching my major and minor at the beginning of my junior year. I’m thankful for all the memories I made this year, from making pasta dinners with my roommates to venting about classes with my neighbors to eating unholy amounts of buffalo chicken dip with friends at tailgates. Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I wish you all happy holidays and a positive new year.

P.S. I’m specifically thankful for the HUB’s soup and garden chicken soup and dumpling days. It is my rock during stressful weeks.

Matt Brown

This year, I am so thankful for so many things. For starters, I’m thankful for Bryce Aron Max Harper. I’m thankful for the amazing memories that he and the entire Phillies team gave me this past fall, and I can’t wait to make more. I’m also thankful for two other athletes as well — Joel Embiid and Jalen Hurts. Thank you for already being the MVPs of your sport. I am also thankful for my amazing family at Onward State and the great year we’ve already had and are going to have. I am also thankful for my friends and family, too, as without them, I wouldn’t be the person I am today.

Megan Dougherty

This year and every year, I’m thankful for my family, friends, and boyfriend. I couldn’t have pushed through this year without all the people who bring a smile to my face and sunlight (that I’m usually missing in State College) to my life. I’m also thankful for all the incredibly talented people in Onward State! Special shoutout to Taylor Swift, everything bagels, coffee, and Twitter for seeing me through my darkest moments.

Megan Kelby

This Thanksgiving, I’m thankful for my family and friends, taco salads from Plaza Mexican, Friday mid-morning naps, Apple Music, Bowls at South, Wordscapes, microwave popcorn, and, most importantly, the word “literally.”

Mikey DeAngelis

This semester was a big semester of growth for me. I became an editor for Onward State and photographed my first football games. Those milestones may seem insignificant to some, but for me, it was the culmination of a lot of hard work. This year, I’m grateful to have grown as a member of Onward State but even more so, I’m thankful to have grown exponentially close to my OS family. There are so many fellow staffers who I’ve grown close with, and I couldn’t feel more blessed to have those people become such an integral part of my life.

Nina Jeffries

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! When I look back at my year, there is a lot I have to be thankful for. I’m thankful for Zoe, Thea, and Abby and all of our family dinners, my family (which, by the way, I’m sorry I brought the flu home with me), Rachael and the boys, and all my friends from back at home. I’m thankful for SOTR, SPSEA, Onward State, and my former THON team, Penn State Fayette. Finally, I’m thankful for Penguins hockey, iced white mochas, Harry Styles, and eating ham on Thanksgiving.

Nolan Wick

As always, I’m thankful for my family and friends both at school and back home. I’m thankful for both growing closer with people I’ve known since last year and getting to know even more people this semester. That applies to the blog, as I’m thankful for the friends I’ve made here and for getting to cover men’s hockey, which is so much fun. Joining Onward State has easily been the best decision I’ve made at Penn State, and I look forward to continuing to be on staff.

It’s hard to summarize everything I’m thankful for in a few sentences, but these are some things I’m happy to have in my life.

Owen Abbey

Where to begin? There’s a lot to be thankful for this year, and so if I miss you, I sincerely apologize. I am thankful for my parents, who let me participate in some amazing experiences in my life. I am thankful for my roommates for making life so crazy and funny at the same time. I am thankful for all of my friends who listen to me rant and challenge me to be the best version of myself. I am thankful for Denmark and Sweden for complicating my post-graduate plans and for bringing me some of my best friends. Lastly, I am thankful for Penn State basketball, because in the words of Michael Jordan, it’s back.

Rachel Padnis

This year and every year, I have so much to be thankful for. I am so thankful for my family, my biggest cheerleaders who support me no matter what, which sometimes means making the trek to State College all the way from Florida just to visit me. Or maybe they just come for the football…kidding. To my mom, dad, my two little brothers, and my dog Bella, I love you all either way.

To my friends, both at school and home, I feel incredibly lucky to have such special people in my life and I hope you know that. I wouldn’t be who I am today without you all.

I also want to thank Onward State, which has given me the best creative outlet I could have ever hoped for. I love what we do and feel so inspired every day working alongside such a passionate and friendly group of individuals. Shoutout to everyone and the blog!

Rico Gore

This Thanksgiving, I am thankful for a bunch of things, including my friends and family. I am also thankful for the Blue Loop for always being there for me. I greatly appreciate the Office of Physical Plant (OPP) for its hard work and dedication to a beautiful campus. I am thankful for the skeleton, Jeff, who lives in my living room. I am thankful for my roommate, Andrew, my advertising fraternity, and my academic advisor. However, if my academic advisor is reading this…please answer my email. Last, but not least, I am thankful for Manny Diaz and hope he doesn’t leave us this year. Oh, and obviously, I am thankful for the blog and our managing editor, Gabe!

Ryan Parsons

This year, I’m thankful for football, Antifragile Brewing Company, my passport, coffee beans, that feeling you get when you finally get out of bed and you aren’t so tired after all, and the state of Vermont. And Patagonia.

Sam Fremin

I’m thankful for a lot of things, but people mostly. I’m thankful for my family, girlfriend, and friends who are always so supportive. I’m thankful for Onward State, whose opportunities have helped me achieve things I am very proud of. I’m thankful for the overwhelmingly privileged life that I live. And arguably most of all, I’m thankful for this year’s Defensive Player of the Year, Micah Parsons.

Sarah Lynn DeCarlo

I️ am beyond thankful for everything in my life. I️ am thankful for my wonderful mom who has pushed through the hard times. I️ am thankful for going to the best school in the world. Penn State has given me Onward State, THON, and my beautiful photog committee; snow and fall trees, breathtaking sunsets, energetic sports, McAllister’s iced tea, and South wraps. I️ am thankful for my roommates, boyfriend, and best friends. There is never a dull moment with you guys, and I️ would not trade you for anyone else. I am thankful for the New York Yankees. Please win next year or else. I️ am extremely thankful for rum and coke — you have my heart.

Theo Koch

I am thankful for my family, friends, traveling, and that Penn State sports are all on a roll right now. I am also grateful for Onward State, THON, and other student organizations that I am involved in that help make Penn State feel like my home away from home in Colorado.

Vikram Raj

Coming from an immigrant family, I am most thankful for the educational opportunities I am offered in the United States. Many times, I look at all the resources, programs, and extracurricular activities offered at Penn State, and I wish my parents could’ve experienced them, too. So many people fight to get the education we receive and it is important to remember how lucky we all are.

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