Posts tagged ‘The Daily Collegian’

The Collegian, Onward State, and the State of the Media

PaperChaseOpenerOne of the adjustments I’ve had to make as I moved from daily newspaper journalism to every-other-month magazine journalism is how much time we at The Penn Stater devote to story selection. We don’t just come up with an idea, assign it, edit it, publish it. We can spend months and months figuring out the best writer for a story, the best angle to take on a story, and the best way for it to fit in our magazine, which averages only three full-length features an issue. We like to think of that space as prime real estate, and we want to use it to its best advantage.

One of the stories in our current issue, “Paper Chase,” has been in the works even longer. When I returned to campus in 2009, I noticed right away the changes in The Daily Collegian—where I had spent the vast majority of my time as an undergrad—and began paying careful attention to a new information source founded by students, the website Onward State. It turns out that my colleague Ryan Jones ’95, who had already been here for a couple of years and who had also worked at the Collegian, was doing the same thing. We needed a story, we said, about the state of student media. Was it mirroring, we wondered, the evolution of media everywhere?

I’m not kidding when I say we kicked that idea around, on and off, for nearly four years. (Yes, perhaps we could stand to streamline our story pitching process.) But news got in the way, and more timely stories popped up. But we kept kicking it around. We watched how the students covered the Sandusky scandal. We got to know many of the students who work at the Collegian and at Onward State. Some are my students. Some, Ryan and I mentor. Some, we know basically as fellow media members, sitting side-by-side in the Beaver Stadium press box or at the Board of Trustees media table.

Last spring, we finally settled on the perfect writer: another Collegian alum, Brian Raftery ’99, who is plugged in to the new media side of things as an intelligent and involved journalist and a contributing editor at Wired. He delved into the reporting and found a fabulous tale to tell. It’s in the issue that should be arriving in Alumni Association members’ mailboxes any day  now (if it hasn’t already), but because we suspect this will have wider interest beyond our usual readers, we’re making an exception and posting it online. Click here to download a PDF.

We also want to note one clarification: Onward State managing editor Kevin Horne says that based on updated statistics from September 2013 to March 2014,  their website averages about 50,000 page views a day, and has upward of 100,000 on a good day.

We hope you’ll enjoy the story. Let us know what you think.

Lori Shontz, senior editor


May 1, 2014 at 2:09 pm 2 comments

The Penn Stater Daily — Nov. 15, 2013

Let’s just call this the way-to-go student media edition. I’ve had a lot to read this morning, thanks to some talented writers at the Collegian and Onward State:

Counseling conundrum: That’s the headline on a chart that appears with a Collegian story about CAPS, the Center for Counseling and Psychological Services, which was nicely reported by Mindy Szkaradnik. The conundrum: CAPS helps a lot of students, but by the middle of the semester, so many students are asking for help that the center has to refer as many as a third of the students elsewhere. This is the kind of reporting I love to see from a student publication—it’s a serious issue that affects students directly. Important work by the Collegian.

52857b21be95f.imageMiraculous recovery: The cover story of the Collegian‘s pregame magazine for Saturday’s game against Purdue tells the incredible tale of defensive lineman Kyle Baublitz, who suffered a stroke when he was 14. John Stuetz digs into the details of what happened and uncovers this this unbelievable fact: The doctors don’t know why he recovered. They did find a hole in his heart, and Baublitz had surgery in 2006 to correct it. “God gave me the gift to go on and play for Penn State,” Baublitz said. “And that’s amazing.” Sure is.

Broken iPhone? No problem: Mara Kern continues in the Onward State tradition of finding fascinating people on campus with a piece on Mac Frederick, who is the go-to guy for fixing dropped iPhones. Frederick is a senior majoring in advertising, business, and—no surprise—entrepreneurship. This guy meets students at their convenience and promises the phone will be fixed in 30 minutes. Geez, lots of times I can’t even get a pizza delivered that fast.

Penn State Love Stories: As someone who met my spouse at Penn State—although well after we both graduated—I’ve been enjoying the stories that Onward State’s Julia Kern has collected about other couples with a Penn State love connection. Here’s the seventh in her series, which appears every Friday. They’re still taking submissions, too, so tell your own story.

Busy weekend: Yeah, there’s a football game against Purdue at noon Saturday. But that’s just for starters. The annual Bandorama, where you can hear the Blue Band and Symphonic Band play, starts at 7 tonight in Eisenhower Auditorium. The women’s soccer team, a four seed, opens NCAA tournament play at 7:30 tonight against Monmouth at Jeffrey Field. Saturday afternoon, the field hockey team takes on defending national champ Princeton in the NCAA first round. The women’s basketball team  takes on perennial power Connecticut at noon Sunday in the Jordan Center. As senior guard Maggie Lucas says, “When you think of women’s basketball, you think UConn.” And if you’re getting your weekend off to an early start, you can check out the men’s soccer team in the Big Ten semifinals vs. Indiana, live on the Big Ten network at noon.

Lori Shontz, senior editor

November 15, 2013 at 12:30 pm Leave a comment

The Penn Stater Daily — Sept. 17, 2013

From news to features, your daily dose of everything Penn State.

Food for thought: A writer from Forbes magazine uses the research of Evan Pugh professor Donald Hambrick, who’s also the Smeal chaired professor of management, to rank the 25 most narcissistic CEOs. (Spoiler alert: the No. 1 ranking, by a lot, goes to Google’s Larry Page.) There’s an interesting discussion of Hambrick’s research, which delves into how a CEO’s background affects the way she or he runs a company, and this piece also explores the idea that narcissism isn’t necessarily a bad thing (see: Steve Jobs). This will make you think.

Reading list: Kesley Tamborrino of the Collegian tells the tale of Michelle Kemper Brownlow ’92, who drew upon her Penn State experiences her first novel, In Too Deep. The novel traces an emotionally abusive relationship which is exacerbated when the boyfriend pledges a fraternity—something that happened to Brownlow—but also includes happier allusions to The Phyrst (called Mitchell’s) and West Halls, among others.

Must-see TV: If you’re a hockey fan, you’re in luck. (more…)

September 17, 2013 at 10:03 am Leave a comment

The Penn Stater Daily — Sept. 16, 2013


From news to features, your daily dose of everything Penn State.

Shrine dedication: The Nittany Lion Shrine opened a few weeks ago after a summer of renovations—mostly to its “habitat,” if you will—but it was officially dedicated Friday. The stonemason said his goal was to create a “stoney, mountain-y environment.” The Daily Collegian has the coverage here.

A romantic at heart: Turns out that the Blue Band’s feature twirler, Matt Freeman, is as smooth off the field as he is on it. (more…)

September 16, 2013 at 10:05 am 4 comments

The Penn Stater Daily — Sept. 13, 2013

Impressive company: For a special October issue, Bloomberg Magazine chose the 50 most influential people in global finance, which includes the usual suspects like New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein, and U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew. It also includes Penn State professor Michael Mann, famous for the hockey stick graph and his passionate stand against climate-change deniers, as one of the top global thinkers.


Just hanging out: Our friends in the Penn State Turfgrass program posted the above photo of two legends Thursday afternoon. (more…)

September 13, 2013 at 8:54 am Leave a comment

The Penn Stater Daily — Sept. 12, 2013

From news to features, your daily dose of everything Penn State.

Big Maple: Redshirt freshman tailback Akeel “Big Maple” Lynch has the best nickname on the football team, as far as I’m concerned (Bill O’Brien bestowed it, a nod to Lynch’s Canadian citizenship), and so far he’s been a go-to performer in the media room after games, smiley and chatty. But he’s not had an easy road to Penn State, a tale told nicely by John Stuetz of The Daily Collegian.

For The Kids: Are you ready for THON? Sure, it’s five months away, but after watching this five-minute promotional video posted Wednesday night, it’ll seem a lot closer. The interview with a THON child and her mom, sitting together, is particularly moving.

Harry, Hufflepuffs, and the Honey Badger: (more…)

September 12, 2013 at 9:14 am Leave a comment

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