Posts tagged ‘Onward State’
I can’t imagine that by Monday evening, there’s not a Penn Stater on the planet who doesn’t know the news: THON set another fundraising record: $12.3 million dollars.
That’s more than $2 million more than last year’s amount, which shattered the previous record. This year’s total ($12,374,034.46, to be precise) raised the total amount that THON has raised for the Four Diamonds Fund to more than $100 million since 1973. No wonder Penn Staters, who have been saddened by so much of what’s happened over the past 14 months, were jubilant when the total was announced.
But we figured that you might not yet have caught up on the terrific THON coverage, starting with the cover of The Daily Collegian, which you can see here. If you want to get a feel for what it was like to be there, through words and pictures, you’re going to want to check out the following:
Click here to read the main story in the Collegian and for a chart with THON milestones over the years, and go to the Collegian’s home page for links to more stories and more photos. If you want a PDF of the paper, you can click here.
If you want to relive THON as it happened, click here for Onward State’s live blog. (Of course, you’ll have to scroll to the bottom and scroll up should you want to go through the whole 46 hours in chronological order.) There are links to videos, photos, and blog posts here, as well.
The College of Communications goes all-out on THON, too. (Someday I’m going to count the number of student journalists covering THON. But I digress.) You can click here to see how 15 student photojournalists, working in shifts, covered the whole 46 hours, and you’ll also find links to daily coverage, too.
And if all of this makes you want to relieve the highlights from 40 years of THON, check out this history piece, which appeared in the February issue of AlumnInsider, a monthly publication of the Alumni Association.
Let us know about your favorite THON coverage in the comments.
Lori Shontz, senior editor
Penn State student journalists have had quite a year, learning on the fly as they’ve covered an ongoing scandal that has emerged as one of the biggest stories in the country—and maybe the biggest story ever in higher education. Their work hasn’t gone unnoticed.
On Thursday, college journalism scholar Dan Reimold, author of the College Media Matters blog, named The Daily Collegian its College Newspaper of the Year. Reimold praises the paper’s staff for “producing quality work and simply surviving a story that prior to fall semester’s start no one but Pennsylvania’s state attorney general could have imagined unfolding.” As a Collegian alum, I’ve closely followed the paper’s coverage (as well as that of Onward State, and of a number of students who freelanced for big-time papers during the scandal) over the past eight months. None of it has been perfect, but then neither has much of the work of the established pros who’ve dropped in to cover this story. Stumbles aside, the vast majority of Penn State student journalists have done impressive work throughout. It’s good to see others have noticed.
Ryan Jones, senior editor
From our intern, Emily Kaplan:
Over the weekend, a friend of mine tweeted: Boy, what I would do to sit in on a journalism ethics class at Penn State this week.
I am fortunate to be enrolled in that course this semester—COMM 409: News Media Ethics, a section taught by Malcolm Moran, a veteran journalist and head of Penn State’s John Curley Center for Sports Journalism.
My friend was right—Tuesday’s lesson was never more relevant. When I walked in, I had pretty good feeling we wouldn’t be discussing the assigned reading on the syllabus. Not after a weekend where dubious reporting and social media gone wild resulted in an announcement that the most recognizable face of this university had died—when in fact, he was still alive.
“There’s nothing more important to be right about than if an important figure is alive or not,” Moran said. “Nothing.”
So who better to be a guest lecturer than Mark Viera ’09? He’s the New York Times reporter who dispelled reports that Joe Paterno had passed away Saturday night by simply asking a family spokesman whether the rumors were true.
The class had a meta feel. Moran asked Viera what lessons from the course he has applied to his reporting—and what lessons couldn’t be taught in the classroom. Moran also pointed out the seat that Viera occupied just a few semesters ago. The girl sitting there now has some big shoes to fill. Viera, 24, has been one of the Times’ lead journalists in Penn State coverage over the past two months because of his familiarity with the school and dogged reporting.
But Tuesday, he stood in front of about 50 of us. Everyone seemed attentive as he spoke. I don’t know whether it was respect for Moran, respect for Viera or simply respect for the subject matter, but I didn’t see one person texting under their desk or day dreaming blankly at the wall. (more…)
There’s a nice story this morning from the AP quoting Scott Paterno ’97, ’00 about his father’s thoughts and mood in the final days of his life. It likely won’t surprise Penn Staters to hear that Joe’s mind was sharp and his spirit strong even as his body failed him. “He was so positive and so confident at the end of his life that the things that were important about this place would endure,” Scott said. “And that’s why he was at peace. That, and (that) my mother was willing to put up with him all these years.”
Two stories today speak to Joe’s love for Penn State, and its students in particular. Mike Poorman ’82 writes at StateCollege.com about the countless interactions Paterno had with undergrads during his time in Happy Valley. Poorman, who taught “Joe Paterno, Communications & The Media” for four years in the College of Communications, took informal polls each semester and tallied the numbers:
“Out of nearly 250 kids in class from 2008-2011, 107 had a personal JoePa moment. We’re not talking football games or pep rallies or THON appearances, all awe-inspiring for tens of thousands of students. We’re talking students being invited into Joe’s house after singing carols, or sitting down at the Creamery with a Peachy Paterno ice cream cone while the treat’s namesake did the same.”
It’s a terrific piece.
There’s never been any doubt how students felt about Paterno. That admiration will be reflected Wednesday with a student-organized “Guide Joe Paterno Home” event encouraging all Penn Staters to line the route of the funeral procession Wednesday afternoon as it leaves the Pasquerilla Spiritual Center for the private burial service. Onward State has details here, and there’s a Facebook group set up as well.
Ryan Jones, senior editor
Word spread quickly this evening that Joe Paterno’s health situation had turned grave. Hundreds of people gathered at the Paterno statue outside Beaver Stadium, bringing candles and other mementoes, and State College police set up barricades on McKee Street to prevent cars from driving to Joe’s house.
At about 8:45 p.m. there was word that Joe had passed away. CBS News seemed to be the source of the report (apparently based on a tweet it saw from the student-run site OnwardState.com), and several other news outlets began repeating it.
Ten minutes later came word that the reports of Joe’s death were erroneous. At 8:57 p.m., Paterno family spokesperson Dan McGinn was quoted as saying they were “absolutely not true.”
Around 9:20 p.m., Jay Paterno tweeted: “I appreciate the support & prayers. Joe is continuing to fight.” And his brother Scott wrote a similar tweet: “CBS report is wrong – Dad is alive but in serious condition. We continue to ask for your prayers and privacy during this time.”
Since then it’s been interesting to read some of the posts on Twitter that are critical of those who, in their zeal to get the news out first, got it wrong.
—”Tonight’s lesson: The old journalism adage ‘if your mother says she loves you, check it out’ rings true.”
—”big lesson young journos, you take someone’s death seriously. You get it from direct sources like family.”
—”When reporting that someone has died, you cannot be “confident” your report is correct. You have to be sure your report is correct.”
—”The CBS editor who went with the story of Paterno’s death should tweet his own name, instantly. Step up.” (This one came from from Sally Jenkins, the Washington Post sportswriter who interviewed Paterno a week ago.)
The Poynter Institute has already written a story explaining how the erroneous reports of Joe’s death spread. Onward State has issued an apology for their error, with managing editor Devon Edwards stepping down immediately. Meanwhile, Penn Staters everywhere wait anxiously, keeping the Paterno family in their thoughts.
Tina Hay, editor
I attended Penn State in the late ’70s and early ’80s, a time when the student publications consisted of the Daily Collegian and La Vie. I think Froth might have been in hibernation during that era—or, if it was active, I sure wasn’t aware of it.
Some of the students involved in those publications got together last Saturday for a dodgeball game, with StateCollege.com senior editor Adam Smeltz refereeing. Andy Colwell, a photographer who’s just finishing up his undergraduate career at Penn State, shot some video and still photos and put together a fun little three-minute video. You can watch it below.
Tina Hay, editor
So I’ve done the math, and it appears that I never had the pleasure of taking Frank Clemente’s much-loved SOC 005 course because back when I was a student here, Clemente was heading up the sociology department, unaware that he had a gift for teaching.
According to the colleagues interviewed on Frank Clemente: A Simply Wonderful Life, a video made by the Department of Sociology and Crime, Law, and Justice to commemorate Clemente’s retirement, he was excelling as an administrator, making tough personnel decisions and encouraging everyone in the department to do better work.
That’s one of the things I learned from watching the 11-minute video. The tributes on the video range from touching (colleague Sam Richards says Clemente was “one of the people I secretly hoped would never retire”) to touching and hilarious (colleague Eric Silver likens Clemente to “Garrison Keillor on steroids”).
The most revealing words of all—no surprise here—come from Clemente himself. He recounts his academic career, how it moved from research to administration to teaching and how he had never envisioned himself as a teacher. He didn’t show up on campus in the late 1970s with the goal of making himself a popular and influential teacher. Says Clemente, “It turned out it was a joy just waiting to be found.”
How beautiful. And inspiring.
Thanks to the crew at Onward State for pointing me to the link on Twitter.
Lori Shontz, senior editor
The folks over at the student-run blog Onward State have posted an album of spring photos to their Facebook page. The photos all were taken in the gardens outside the Hintz Family Alumni Center, and they’re excellent. The photographer, Eric Weiss, did what smart (and limber) photographers do: He got down on his stomach and shot the flowers and ducks at ground level.
Looking at the photos, I wasn’t 100 percent sure they could be from this year—Eric found a lot more color than I would have thought was out there at this time of year. (The gardens are right outside my window, and I walk past them almost daily on my way to and from lunch.)
So I went out just now to look more closely, and ran into Theresa Barger, a groundskeeper from Physical Plant who happened to be planting some annuals. And Theresa said that, sure enough, the blooms I saw on the Onward State album are right here—she pointed out the primrose near the gazebo, for example, and the daffodils near the “Olympic Wannabes” sculpture. They all just popped up this week.
Anyway, thanks to Onward State for giving us a much-needed infusion of spring.
Tina Hay, editor
Earlier today, a couple of us were trying to figure out what percentage of the student body is participating in THON, which officially gets underway at 6 p.m. Friday—in a little less than two hours. We’re not sure, but we’re guessing between a third and a half of the students at the University Park campus are involved somehow—dancers, volunteers, cheering on from the stands—and there are plenty of students from other campuses here for the big event.
And of course the THON families—children and their parents who are being helped by the Four Diamonds Fund, the reason 700 students will be dancing for 46 hours this weekend at the Bryce Jordan Center—are in town, too.
If you can’t be there, there are still plenty of ways to follow along. Here are some of the best:
And the College of Communications is again dispatching more than 150 students to cover the event, including a live webstream. You can find all of that coverage here.
Last year, THON raised more than $7.8 million for the Four Diamonds Fund. Check back at the end of the weekend for more details from this year’s event.
Lori Shontz, senior editor
And the winner is … The Arboretum at Penn State.
Voting for the Class of 2010 senior gift ended Monday, and the overwhelming choice was the Marsh Meadow Boardwalk and Overlook at the Arboretum. The final totals, announced Tuesday: 1,965 for the boardwalk, 435 for a public sculpture and endowed sculpture, and 418 for an endowment to maintain the HUB Aquarium.
The seniors have pledged $19,000 so far, and they’re continuing to raise money. You can get the specifics at the PSUSeniors.com blog.
The bloggers at Onward State thought the options could have been spiced up; they suggested “a massive statue of Joe Pa in the mountains overlooking Happy Valley in the fashion of Rio De Janeiro’s Christ the Redeemer,” which obviously would have significantly increased the buzz around the tradition. I can only imagine what the College GameDay crew would have done with that.
Lori Shontz, senior editor