Michael olenick

Hospitality Director

4th Year Student
Hometown: Allentown, PA
Major: Rehabilitation and Human Services
Minor: Psychology

Previous THON™ Involvement

THON 2020: Entertainment Committee Member
THON 2021: Family Relations Captain (Family Event Coordinator)
THON 2022: Hospitality Captain (Committee Events Coordinator)

Why did you want to become a director for the largest student-run philanthropy in the world?

When I got to Penn State, I instantly had an interest in THON, as I wanted to get involved in an organization that really ignites change in our society and makes this world a better place. A few years ago, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer, and my family witnessed firsthand the struggle this disease brings. I joined THON, because no family should experience this, and I want to do everything I can to help the families that do. Ever since I first joined a committee, THON has been such an important part of my life, and I wanted to be a Director to continue to pouring my heart into this mission and to serving our families.

What are your main responsibilities as a Director for THON 2023?

My main responsibility as the Hospitality Director is to work with donors, both corporate and in-kind, to procure food and beverages for THON Events. It is my responsibility to maintain a mutually beneficial relationship with each of these donors. With these donations, the Hospitality Committee serves meals to dancers, families, and volunteers so together, we can Fuel the Fight against childhood cancer.

What is your favorite THON memory?

My favorite THON Memory was during Family Hour of THON Weekend 2022. I was standing on the floor with my Co-Captains from that year to my right, and some of my Co-Captains from the year before that on my left, and it was so special to be with the people that had such a strong impact on my life and THON Journey over the past two years. Family Hour is such a special time where the entire THON Community comes together to get to know our families, celebrate them, and show our support for them, and it was such an impactful experience that I am so grateful I got to spend with people that are so important to me!

As a director, what are you most looking forward to for THON 2023?

I am most looking forward to getting to interact with so many different members of the THON Community. On the Hospitality Committee, we work to serve food to families, dancers, volunteers, and all supporters. We work with many donors, both small and large, in the State College community and beyond to procure those food and beverage donations. These interactions are something I treasure, and I am beyond excited to bring members of the THON Community together and to serve them some delicious food!

Favorite Quote?

"One small voice can teach the world a song" - from Reese Douglas Parham's pennant

Are you involved in other organizations that benefit THON?


What are you involved in outside of THON?

Camp Kesem Central PA

What are your plans after graduation from Penn State?

I plan on attending graduate school for school counseling.

If you were an animal, what would you be and why?

I would be a lion as they are very protective of their families, and they constantly look out for others. Caring for people and helping others is extremely important to me!

Is a hotdog a sandwich?

I think a hotdog is a sandwich because the hot dog is between two slices of bread!