Paterno Family to File Lawsuit against the NCAA

Representatives of the family of late Penn State football coach Joe Paterno tonight are expected to announce a lawsuit against the NCAA filed on behalf of the Paterno family and Penn State, according to a report in The (Harrisburg) Patriot-News.

The announcement will come on Bob Costas’ “Costas Tonight” show on the NBC Sports Network after the Red Wings-Blackhawks hockey game. Paterno family attorney Wick Sollers, former Pennsylvania Gov. Dick Thornburgh and Paterno family spokesman Dan McGinn are expected to appear on the show, an NBC spokesman told The Patriot-News. Costas also reportedly will discuss the Freeh report and question its validity on the show. Thornburgh, the former U.S. attorney general, contributed to the Paterno family’s review of the Freeh report.
The Paterno family lawsuit comes after Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett filed an antitrust lawsuit against the NCAA about the severe sanctions imposed on Penn State and its football program in the wake of the Jerry Sandusky sex abuse scandal. Corbett will learn in the next few weeks whether his lawsuit will be allowed to continue.
A Pennsylvania state senator also has filed a lawsuit against the NCAA seeking to keep all proceeds from the $60 million fine imposed on the university within the state for use.
The university itself is not involved in any of the lawsuits. Penn State signed a consent decree last summer accepting the NCAA sanctions on the school and the football program.

Bringing Down a Legend: How an “Independent” Grand Jury Ended Joe Paterno’s Career

By Brian Gallini
Entering the 2011 collegiate football season, Joseph Vincent “Joe” Paterno was the longest tenured head football coach in the nation, the winningest coach in Penn State and major college football history, and his current Nittany Lion squad was enjoying another standout season.  That fall, things changed for him almost overnight.
On November 5, 2011, Pennsylvania State Police arrested Jerry Sandusky, an ex-assistant defensive coach to Joe Paterno, for sexually abusing eight boys. The arrest followed what Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly called a “widereaching grand jury investigation,” the results of which—contained in a grand jury presentment—became publicly available on the same day Sandusky was arrested.  Although the presentment was replete with horrific sexual abuse allegations related specifically to Sandusky, it also included a handful of “facts” relevant to Paterno. In general, the presentment described inappropriate sexual contact between Sandusky and eight young boys.
When describing an incident on March 1, 2002, between Sandusky and “victim 2,” the presentment indicated that a “graduate assistant” (later identified as Mike McQueary) witnessed Sandusky showering with “a naked boy . . . whose age he estimated to be ten years old, with his hands up against the wall, being subjected to anal intercourse by a naked  Sandusky.” The next day, according to the presentment, the graduate assistant “telephoned Paterno and went to Paterno’s home, where he reported what he had seen.” Paterno responded by calling Penn State’s athletic director at his home the next day to report “that the graduate assistant had seen Jerry Sandusky in the Lasch Building showers fondling or doing something of a sexual nature to a young boy.”
A media frenzy erupted immediately after the report came out.  News about the so-called “Penn State scandal” was all over every major newspaper in the nation and occupied time on almost every major network and cable news station for days. Alongside the  understandable public outcry surrounding Sandusky’s horrid alleged behavior lingered some basic questions about Joe Paterno: how much did he know about Sandusky’s conduct and, correspondingly, when did he know it?
On November 7, Pennsylvania Attorney General Linda Kelly clarified that Paterno was not the subject of the state’s criminal investigation into how the school handled the allegations against Sandusky. That, however, did not satisfy the court of public opinion. Sensing the end of his career was perhaps near, and seeking to unilaterally decide the date of his retirement, Paterno announced on the morning of November 9 that he would retire at the end of the 2011 season.
The University’s Board of Trustees ignored Paterno’s announcement and dismissed him, effective immediately, that same evening.
 The University community reacted violently to the news of Paterno’s firing. Paterno tried to calm supporters who had gathered outside his home shortly after news of his firing became public by telling them “we still have things to do.” He was wrong. Just sixty-four days later, Paterno died on January 22, 2012, at the age of eighty-five due to metastatic small cell carcinoma of the lung.
Paterno’s downfall began with the investigative grand jury naming Paterno in the presentment targeted toward Sandusky. But Paterno was denied the opportunity to legally respond—there existed no venue for him to file any kind of response or seek to strike portions of the Sandusky presentment. In federal court and many state courts, strict secrecy rules governing grand jury activity would likely have ensured that Paterno would never have had to respond —publicly or legally—to a presentment issued by an investigating grand jury that investigated someone else.
Secrecy rules aside, federal grand jury targets, defendants, and/or witnesses never have to respond to grand jury presentments because presentments have been disallowed in the federal criminal justice system since 1946.  Federal courts also disallow so-called grand jury reports—documents that, historically speaking, report on matters of public concern or the conduct of public officials.  But a gap in the Supreme Court’s grand jury jurisprudence promotes inconsistency in the treatment of grand jury documents, secrecy rules, and uninvestigated third parties. The Supreme Court’s historic emphasis on the grand jury’s independence is to blame. Indeed, the Court’s long-held characterization of the grand jury as a body “acting independently of either prosecuting attorney or judge” promotes and allows for the extreme position taken by Pennsylvania’s statutory scheme. Pennsylvania continues to authorize both presentments and reports but, in doing so, does not regulate with precision what and who is permissibly included in those documents. Its failure to do so allows the grand jury to name anyone, such as an uninvestigated third party like Paterno, in a presentment or report without correspondingly providing that third party with the ability to defend himself meaningfully. 
Accordingly, this Article argues that the Supreme Court’s current view of the grand jury allowed a Pennsylvania investigative grandjury to needlessly and unfairly include Paterno, practically accusing him of a crime. An important job of the grand jury is to investigate crimes,  but by naming Paterno in the Sandusky presentment it implicitly said that Paterno committed a crime without having gone through the appropriate steps to establish probable cause that he did commit a crime. Any grand jury that names an uninvestigated person in a presentment or report subverts the grand jury’s investigative purpose and abuses the grand jury system. Just as problematic, the Sandusky document immediately became public. Releasing that document to the public undermines the factfinding mission that is central to our jury system. Indeed, allowing the public to view sensitive grand jury documents—untested by a proof beyond a reasonable doubt standard—harms the reputation of any named third party and unduly prejudices the suspect’s potential jury pool.  Finally, it inappropriately allows for a trial by media that can ensnare third parties, like Joe Paterno, who are not the subject of the grand jury’s investigation. Paterno’s involvement may certainly have become public absent his being named in the Sandusky presentment, but a grand jury investigation into someone else—in this case Sandusky—should have no role in that eventuality. It may likewise be the case that what appeared in the Sandusky presentment about Paterno is absolutely true. Indeed, Paterno may well have protected a child molester for a decade for the most selfish of reasons—but his personal guilt is not the point. Paterno’s story simply makes for an outstanding illustration of the Supreme Court’s problematic view of the grand jury as an independent body. The absence of consistent regulation over that body, a byproduct of the Supreme Court’s approach, allowed a grand jury presentment investigating one person to improperly accuse an uninvestigated third party of impropriety.
But at least Sandusky had his day in court. Paterno will not. Paterno is a private third party who was not under investigation and is thus historically not properly included in either the presentment of someone else, or the subject of a separate grand jury report. The Pennsylvania Attorney General’s decision to make the Sandusky presentment public ignores that history and, in doing so, denies to Paterno the opportunity to defend his name, his reputation, or what he did—or did not do—during Sandusky’s tenure on his staff, leading up to Sandusky’s retirement, and following Sandusky’s retirement. Paterno’s inability to do so has nothing to do with the fact that he is dead. Even assuming that Paterno had not died from lung cancer, there exists no meaningful legal proceeding in Pennsylvania that would allow him to distance himself from the grand jury’s investigation into Sandusky. Even if such a proceeding existed, it’s unlikely the public would forget about his inclusion in Sandusky’s investigation.
After all, the public reaction to Sandusky’s acquittal on involuntary deviate sexual intercourse against victim two (the same victim who McQueary allegedly saw in the shower with Sandusky) has hardly cleared Paterno’s name—though it was Paterno’s handling of the story related to victim two that led to his firing. Part of the collective problem, of course, stems from the manner in which the Sandusky presentment was written. Emblazoned with Findings of Fact at the top of the page, the media at large took it as precisely as that—some members of the media even went so far as to assume the document constituted an indictment against Sandusky. Thus, the average reader of the media’s subsequent stories about Sandusky, let alone the average lawyer, likely had no idea about the difference between a “presentment” and an “indictment.” And why would they—the Sandusky presentment was not even labeled as such; the document omitted a title page and announced itself immediately with its “findings of fact” label. The public likely has no idea that those findings were not the product of an adversary proceeding.
The totality of the Sandusky investigation perfectly illustrates why federal grand jury practice has, as discussed above, all but eliminated the grand jury’s presentment and reporting abilities. Its doing so “should not be mourned.”  Federal grand jury practice “properly reflect[s] an unwillingness to allow an ex parte, unaccountable body to inflict damage on reputations and careers.” Several states have followed suit by, for example,  restricting the filing of grand jury reports that single out individuals,  requiring that such reports follow procedural safeguards, or at least providing the named individual with the opportunity to challenge the report’s contents.  But state practice is not constitutionally obligated to follow any particular procedural approach. Accordingly, the more central problem is the perhaps unintended consequence of the Supreme Court’s thematic emphasis on the grand jury being an “independent” body that is not “textually assigned” to anybranch of government.
The idea that the investigative grand jury in Pennsylvania is truly “independent” seems difficult to reconcile with the fact that it cannot operate without either the prosecutor, or a supervising judge. Paterno’s story so compellingly demonstrates these collective problems because of the consequences of the Sandusky investigation to him: (1) he believed he would die without football, and (2) the Sandusky investigative grand jury took football from him—whether intentionally or not. As to the first point, Paterno never had interest in retirement. In an interview for The New York Times in 1997, Paterno, then age seventy, said, “I don’t want to retire. Too many people quit their jobs too early and don’t know what to do with themselves.” CBS sportscaster Brent Musburger said over a decade later in 2008 that his friend, Paterno, was haunted by Bear Bryant’s death. Bryant, of course, was the legendary coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide football team from 1958-82, who retired in 1982 and died from a massive heart attack just twenty-nine days later. Musburger added the following: “[Paterno] is a man that doesn’t fish, doesn’t play golf . . . he has no other interest other than his family and football[.] And he’s just afraid what would happen with the rest of his life if he walks away from it.” Paterno was apparently even more direct with current Nittany Lion, Donovan Smith; Paterno told him “I’m afraid to stop coaching because I’ll die.” Although some contend that Paterno died from a broken heart, others suggest that medical evidence supports the idea that the grief he experienced as a result of the Sandusky investigation and his firing hastened Paterno’s passing. According to a recent study, grief experienced from loss—as in, for example, a job—can increase the risk of a heart attack “21-fold.” One national expert on aging said that in Paterno’s case specifically, his firing could have accelerated his death: “[w]hen you feel that you’ve lost your place in this world, death is never far behind[.]” And, more basically, “coexisting conditions such as high psychological stress, depression and major changes in a life event are all associated with increased mortality.” Regardless of the accuracy of the medical evidence, the point of this Article remains the same: all of this started with an “independent” grand jury investigating Sandusky that named Paterno in a presentment related only to Sandusky. Doing so was gratuitous, superfluous, and denied to Paterno the opportunity to explain what he did, or did not do, about Sandusky’s criminal behavior. Pennsylvania, floating in a sea of other states with differing approaches to grand jury practice, allows the investigative grand jury to issue a presentment, a document long ago described by a New York appellate court as follows:
A presentment is a foul blow. It wins the importance of a judicial document, yet it lacks its principal attributes—the right to answer and to appeal. It accuses but furnishes no forum for a denial. No one knows upon what evidence the findings are based. An indictment may be challenged—even defeated. The presentment is immune. It is like the “hit and run” motorist. Before application can be made to suppress it, it is the subject of public gossip. The damage is done. The injury it may unjustly inflict may never be healed.
I hope they’re not going to judge me on how many games I won or lost . . . I hope they judge me on some other things, the impact we’ve had on people’s lives. Some have been good and, obviously, some have not been so good. But I hope the overall picture is that we have done some good for people.  At the time, of course, no one knew that Penn State would fire Paterno after its Board of Trustees concluded that Paterno exemplified a “failure of leadership” by failing to do more after being told that his former assistant coach anally raped a young boy. Commentators no doubt will continue to debate whether Paterno did, in fact, do “enough” when told about Sandusky. But, while that debate remains unresolved, what is clear is that a grand jury document unrelated to Paterno should not have been the cause of his termination. When the Sandusky grand jury’s Findings of Fact became public, the court of public opinion took that document as precisely that: fact. Problematically, however, grand jury proceedings are not governed by a proof beyond a reasonable doubt standard and, moreover, Paterno was not under investigation. The possibility that a criminally innocent third party could be ensnared by the grand jury investigation of someone else is precisely why the Supreme Court should provide more grand jury regulatory guidance and abandon the modernly inapplicable notion that the grand jury is “independent

Report of Mid States Regarding Accreditation


THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY 201 Old Main Building University Park, PA 16802 Phone: (814) 865-4700; Fax: (814) 865-1100

Chief Executive Officer: Dr. Rodney A. Erickson, President
Enrollment (Headcount): 74371 Undergraduate; 13024 Graduate
Control: Public
Affiliation: State
Carnegie Classification: Research – Very High Research Activity
Degrees Offered: Postsecondary Certificate (< 1 year), Postsecondary Certificate (>=1 year, < 2 years), Associate’s, Bachelor’s, Postbaccalaureate Certificate, Master’s, Doctor’s – Professional Practice, Doctor’s – Research/Scholarship;
Distance Education Programs: Yes
Accreditors Approved by U.S. Secretary of Education: American Bar Association, Council of the Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar; American Physical Therapy Association, Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education; American Psychological Association, Commission on Accreditation; American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology; Commission on Acceditation of Healthcare Management Education; Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education; Commission on English Language Program Accreditation; Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology; Liaison Committee on Medical Education; National Association of Schools of Art and Design, Commission on Accreditation; National Association of Schools of Music, Commission on Accreditation; National Association of Schools of Theatre, Commission on Accreditation; National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education; National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission
Other Accreditors: Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences; Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND); Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education; Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education; Accreditation Board for Engineering & Technology; Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications; American Academy of Forensic Science; American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians; American Chemical Society; Association for Assessment and Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care International; Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business-International (AACSB); Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business; Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education; Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education; Council for the Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs; Council on Rehabilitation Education; Institute of Food Technologists; Landscape Architecture Accreditation Board (LAAB); National Accrediting Agency for Clinical Laboratory Sciences; National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB); National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE); National Association of Schools of Public Affairs & Administration (NASPAA); North American Wildlife Technology Association; Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing – Licensing; Pennsylvania Department of Education; Professional Golfer’s Association (PGA) of America; Society of American Foresters; Society of Wood Science and Technology
Instructional Locations
Branch Campuses: Dickinson School of Law, Carlisle, PA; Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, PA
Additional Locations: Great Valley School of Graduate Professional Studies, Malvern, PA; Penn State Abington, Abington, PA; Penn State Altoona, Altoona, PA; Penn State Beaver, Monaca, PA; Penn State Berks, Reading, PA; Penn State Brandywine, Media, PA; Penn State DuBois, DuBois, PA; Penn State Erie, The Behrend College, Erie, PA; Penn State Fayette, The Eberly Campus, Uniontown, PA; Penn State Greater Allegheny, McKeesport, PA; Penn State Harrisburg, Middletown, PA; Penn State Hazleton, Hazleton, PA; Penn State Lehigh Valley, Center Valley, PA; Penn State Mont Alto, Mont Alto, PA; Penn State New Kensington, Upper Burrell, PA; Penn State Schuylkill, Schuylkill Haven, PA; Penn State Shenango, Sharon, PA; Penn State Wilkes-Barre, Lehman, PA; Penn State Worthington Scranton, Dunmore, PA; Penn State York, York, PA
Other Instructional Sites: Abington Hospital, Abington, PA; Aria Health, Philadelphia, PA; ARIS-SON, Abington, PA; Clearfield Area High School, Clearfield, PA; Community Education Council of Elk and Cameron Counties, St. Marys, PA; Downtown Conference Center, Altoona, PA; Erie Regional Skill Center, Erie, PA; Hershey Medical Center, Hershey, PA; Kraft, Wilkes-Barre, PA; Lancaster Center, Lancaster, PA; Lebanon, Lebanon, PA; Mount Nittany Medical Center/Clinics in Centre County, State College, PA; Northern Tier Center, Towanda, PA; Penn State Continuing Education at Williamsport, Williamsport, PA; Pittsburgh Mills Mall, Tarentum, PA; Proctor & Gamble, Mehoopany, PA; Regional Learning Alliance, Cranberry Twp., PA; Sallie Mae, Hanover Twp., PA; Shaver’s Creek, Petersburg, PA; The Penn State Learning Center (Lewistown), Lewistown, PA; Tobyhanna Army Depot, Tobyhanna, PA; Westmoreland County Community College, Youngwood, PA
Status: Member since 1921
Last Reaffirmed: November 15, 2012

Most Recent Commission Action:

November 15, 2012: To accept the monitoring report, to note the visit by the Commission’s representatives, to remove the warning, and to reaffirm accreditation. To request a monitoring report, due November 1, 2013, documenting (1) the impact on the University budget and the identification of sources of funding to cover the requirements of (a) the report of the U.S. Department of Education regarding the University’s compliance with the Clery Act and associated penalties; (b) updated estimates of the projected costs and liabilities associated with related litigation and the implementation of the Freeh Report recommendations and the NCAA Consent Decree requirements; and (c) the recommendations that are articulated in the report of the external monitor called for by Recommendation 8.3 of the Freeh Report (Standard 3); and (2) developments associated with the revision of the Bylaws of the Board of Trustees to accommodate (a) the expanded involvement of faculty, staff, and students on Board committees and (b) the dual reporting accountability to both the Board and the President of key positions, including that of the General Counsel and the Directors of Internal Audit and Compliance (Standard 4). The next evaluation visit is scheduled for 2014-2015.


Brief History Since Last Comprehensive Evaluation:

November 18, 2010: To accept the Periodic Review Report and to reaffirm accreditation. To request a progress report due by April 1, 2012 documenting evidence of further progress in: (1) the establishment of learning goals at the program level in all programs; and (2) the use of appropriate assessment of the attainment of learning goals at the program level, including use of direct measures of the assessment of student learning and evidence that assessment results are used to improve teaching and learning (Standard 14). The next evaluation visit is scheduled for 2014-2015.
March 1, 2012: To accept the Commission-requested information report, to remind the institution that the Commission must continue to be informed of any further developments that may result in changes in mission, programs, personnel and/or budget arising from the institution’s investigation or that may result in a change of status with external oversight bodies, such as the NCAA, and to request that the institution provide to the Commission copies of all relevant reports from its investigation or to its external oversight bodies. To further remind the institution of the progress report due by April 1, 2012 documenting evidence of further progress in: (1) the establishment of learning goals at the program level in all programs; and (2) the use of appropriate assessment of the attainment of learning goals at the program level, including use of direct measures of the assessment of student learning and evidence that assessment results are used to improve teaching and learning (Standard 14). The next evaluation visit is scheduled for 2014-2015.
June 28, 2012: To accept the progress report. To remind the institution that the Commission must continue to be informed of any further developments that may result in changes in mission, programs, personnel, and/or budget arising from the institution’s investigation or that may result in a change of status with external oversight bodies, such as the NCAA, and to request that the institution provide to the Commission copies of all relevant reports from its investigation or to its external oversight bodies. The next evaluation visit is scheduled for 2014-2015.
August 6, 2012: To warn the institution that its accreditation is in jeopardy based on information contained in the institutionally commissioned Report of the Special Investigative Counsel (Freeh, Sporkin & Sullivan, LLP, July 12, 2012) and the Binding Consent Decree Imposed by the National Collegiate Athletic Association and Accepted by the Pennsylvania State University (July 23, 2013) and insufficient evidence that the institution is currently in compliance with the Requirements of Affiliation 5 (compliance with all applicable government policies, regulations, and requirements) and 9 (institution’s governing body responsibility for the quality and integrity of the institution, for ensuring that the institution’s mission is being carried out, and for making freely available to the Commission accurate, fair, and complete information on all aspects of the institution and its operations) and with Standard 4 (Leadership and Governance) and Standard 6 (Integrity). To note that the institution remains accredited while on warning. To request a monitoring report due by September 30, 2012 documenting steps that have been taken and are planned to ensure the institution’s full compliance with Requirements of Affiliation 5 and 9 as well as Accreditation Standards 4 and 6. In addition, to request that the monitoring report also address Accreditation Standard 3 (Institutional Resources) with regard to the institution’s capacity and plans for addressing financial obligations that will or may result from the investigation and related settlements, etc. A small team visit will follow submission of the monitoring report. To remind the institution that the Commission must continue to be informed of any further significant related developments, including the provision of copies of any and all relevant external reports. The due date for the next evaluation visit will be established when accreditation is reaffirmed.


Next Self-Study Evaluation: 2014 – 2015

Next Periodic Review Report: 2020

Date Printed: April 15, 2013


Branch Campus – A location of an institution that is geographically apart and independent of the main campus of the institution. The location is independent if the location: offers courses in educational programs leading to a degree, certificate, or other recognized educational credential; has its own faculty and administrative or supervisory organization; and has its own budgetary and hiring authority.
Additional Location – A location, other than a branch campus, that is geographically apart from the main campus and at which the institution offers at least 50 percent of an educational program. ANYA (“Approved but Not Yet Active”) indicates that the location is included within the scope of accreditation but has not yet begun to offer courses. This designation is removed after the Commission receives notification that courses have begun at this location.
Other Instructional Sites – A location, other than a branch campus or additional location, at which the institution offers one or more courses for credit.
Distance Education Programs – Yes or No indicates whether or not the institution has been approved to offer one or more degree or certificate/diploma programs for which students could meet 50% or more of their requirements by taking distance education courses.


An institution’s accreditation continues unless it is explicitly suspended or removed. In addition to reviewing the institution’s accreditation status at least every 5 years, actions are taken for substantive changes (such as a new degree or geographic site, or a change of ownership) or when other events occur that require review for continued compliance. Any type of report or visit required by the Commission is reviewed and voted on by the Commission after it is completed.

In increasing order of seriousness, a report by an institution to the Commission may be accepted, acknowledged, or rejected.

Levels of Actions:

Grant or Re-Affirm Accreditation without follow-up

Defer a decision on initial accreditation: The institution shows promise but the evaluation team has identified issues of concern and recommends that the institution be given a specified time period to address those concerns.

Postpone a decision on (reaffirmation of) accreditation: The Commission has determined that there is insufficient information to substantiate institutional compliance with one or more standards.

Continue accreditation: A delay of up to one year may be granted to ensure a current and accurate representation of the institution or in the event of circumstances beyond the institution’s control (natural disaster, U.S. State Department travel warnings, etc.)

Recommendations to be addressed in the next Periodic Review Report: Suggestions for improvement are given, but no follow-up is needed for compliance.

Supplemental Information Report: This is required when a decision is postponed and are intended only to allow the institution to provide further information, not to give the institution time to formulate plans or initiate remedial action.

Progress report: The Commission needs assurance that the institution is carrying out activities that were planned or were being implemented at the time of a report or on-site visit.

Monitoring report: There is a potential for the institution to become non-compliant with MSCHE standards; issues are more complex or more numerous; or issues require a substantive, detailed report. A visit may or may not be required.

Warning: The Commission acts to Warn an institution that its accreditation may be in jeopardy when the institution is not in compliance with one or more Commission standards and a follow-up report, called a monitoring report, is required to demonstrate that the institution has made appropriate improvements to bring itself into compliance. Warning indicates that the Commission believes that, although the institution is out of compliance, the institution has the capacity to make appropriate improvements within a reasonable period of time and the institution has the capacity to sustain itself in the long term.

Probation: The Commission places an institution on Probation when, in the Commission’s judgment, the institution is not in compliance with one or more Commission standards and that the non-compliance is sufficiently serious, extensive, or acute that it raises concern about one or more of the following:

  1. the adequacy of the education provided by the institution;
  2. the institution’s capacity to make appropriate improvements in a timely fashion; or
  3. the institution’s capacity to sustain itself in the long term.


Probation is often, but need not always be, preceded by an action of Warning or Postponement. If the Commission had previously postponed a decision or placed the institution on Warning, the Commission may place the institution on Probation if it determines that the institution has failed to address satisfactorily the Commission’s concerns in the prior action of postponement or warning regarding compliance with Commission standards. This action is accompanied by a request for a monitoring report, and a special visit follows. Probation may, but need not always, precede an action of Show Cause.

Suspend accreditation: Accreditation has been Continued for one year and an appropriate evaluation is not possible. This is a procedural action that would result in Removal of Accreditation if accreditation cannot be reaffirmed within the period of suspension.

Show cause why the institution’s accreditation should not be removed: The institution is required to present its case for accreditation by means of a substantive report and/or an on-site evaluation. A “Public Disclosure Statement” is issued by the Commission.

Remove accreditation. If the institution appeals this action, its accreditation remains in effect until the appeal is completed.

Other actions are described in the Commission policy, “Range of Commission Actions on Accreditation.”

This is Penn State – Uplifting Athletes Rare Disease Day

Becky Mayes

Less than a week after THON raised over 12 million dollars, at the Penn State men’s basketball game against Michigan, the Nittany Lions Uplifting Athletes Chapter held a push-up challenge. The goal: invite students and fans to collectively complete 7,000 push-ups in honor of the 7,000 rare diseases that currently affect more than 30 million Americans.

In honor of Rare Disease Day, the Penn State Chapter not only broke the 7,000 push-up mark before the end of the first quarter, but also released the date of their 11th Annual Lift For Life — Friday, July 12th. The evening ended in perfect fashion for this first-year campaign. The Lion’s basketball team upset 4th ranked Michigan for its first Big Ten conference win.

The Penn State Chapter’s efforts highlight what our current 14 Chapters do every day in the fight against rare diseases. Through their hard work, more than a million dollars has been raised for rare disease research. The increased awareness surrounding an underserved population has also been monumental.

Tomorrow, Mark Herzlich and Uplifting Athletes will be presenting the 2013 Rare Disease Champion award to Eric Shrive at the Maxwell Football Club Awards Dinner in Atlantic City. This event will be aired live on ESPN 3 and begins at 6:30pm so make sure to tune-in.

The following day in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, Uplifting Athletes will hold its annual Gridiron Gala – a black-tie optional, gourmet tailgate themed event in effort to white out rare diseases. Here, our supporters will honor Shrive’s success along with celebrating all of our Chapter’s efforts and unveiling our newest schools to come on board.

Pennsylvania Senator Comments on NCAA Response

HARRISBURG – Sen. Jake Corman (R-34) has issued the following statement regarding the NCAA’s challenge of Pennsylvania law.

“The recent NCAA litigation challenging Act 1 will delay the Penn State fine money from positively impacting programs and services that assist child abuse victims in Pennsylvania. In arguing that Pennsylvania has no role in the policy decisions of a state-related institution, the NCAA has gone well beyond its bylaws and believes it can operate as an unchecked governing body,” said Corman.

“Act 1 was carefully crafted to not impair the consent decree between Penn State University and the NCAA, and the law is constitutional.

“The NCAA has clearly misrepresented Penn State University as a private institution, as well as the parameters set forth in the consent decree.

NCAA President Mark Emmert’s statement that Act 1 is nothing more than an attempt to benefit the ‘home team’ is not only inaccurate, but also exemplifies the organization’s delusional understanding of the law. Penn State University receives no gain from Act 1 — the only people who will benefit are Pennsylvania’s sexual abuse victims.  As the money is being derived from a Commonwealth-supported institution of higher education and being generated by state residents, the fine money should be distributed in Pennsylvania.

“In light of the court challenge and Mark Emmert’s statements, state-related and public universities, which are members of the NCAA, should call for a change in the NCAA leadership and operational standards. The NCAA federal lawsuit is an unfortunate power grab by the NCAA, who appears to be more concerned with its national reputation than actually using the $60 million for those who need it the most.”

Investigation to Focus on Governor’s Handling of Penn State Abuse Case


HARRISBURG, Pa. — First it was a criminal case. Then it enveloped a university athletic program. Now the Penn State child sexual abuse scandal has infiltrated the realm of politics.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane, a Democrat, said she wanted to know why nearly three years elapsed before criminal charges were brought by Gov. Tom Corbett, a Republican, when he was attorney general.

Mr. Corbett rejects the suggestion of delays.

Pennsylvania’s new attorney general is set to name a special prosecutor in the coming days to investigate Gov. Tom Corbett’s handling of the case, specifically why nearly three years elapsed before criminal charges were brought.

Attorney General Kathleen Kane, a Democrat elected in November, confirmed her plans in an interview here. She suggested that when he was attorney general Mr. Corbett, a Republican, slow-walked the investigation of a longtime football coach at the center of the scandal while campaigning for governor.

Mr. Corbett, who was elected in 2010, has flatly rejected the suggestion that he delayed the case.

But polls show that a majority of Pennsylvania voters are critical of his handling of the investigation, and Ms. Kane’s inquiry is likely to cast a shadow over his bid for a second term in 2014

Congressmen want Scholarships Reinstituted

STATE COLLEGE, Pa. (AP) — Two Pennsylvania congressmen want the NCAA to restore football scholarships taken away from Penn State, saying in a letter Monday those sanctions unfairly punish innocent student-athletes for the child sex abuse scandal involving retired assistant coach Jerry Sandusky.

In the letter to NCAA President Mark Emmert, U.S. Reps. Charlie Dent and Glenn Thompson wrote that taking away up to 40 scholarships harmed players who had nothing to do with the scandal that engulfed the university in 2011.

”I want to make it clear to the NCAA who they are really hurting with this scholarship reduction. It’s not Jerry Sandusky and it’s not the university,” Dent said in a statement. ”They are hurting young people who are completely innocent of anything relating to the Sandusky situation and who through no fault of their own are being denied a chance to get a great education.”

A spokeswoman for college sports’ governing body said the NCAA would respond directly to Dent instead of through the media. A Penn State spokesman declined comment.

The NCAA sanctions limit Penn State’s recruiting classes to no more than 15 signees a year for four years, starting with the 2013 class to be formally finalized next week. Most teams can sign 25.

Sanctions also include a four-year postseason ban that began for the 2012 season and a $60 million fine.

If his request to restore scholarships is denied, the congressmen asked Emmert to deduct from the fine an amount equal to 40 scholarships so the school can use it instead to supply access to academic programs.

In announcing sanctions last July, Emmert drew the ire of some fans and alumni after the NCAA denounced the school for ”perpetuating a ‘football-first’ culture that ultimately enabled serial child sexual abuse to occur.”

Penn State historically has had high graduation rates for athletes. Dent cited in his letter NCAA data released last year showing the football team had a record graduation rate of 91 percent, which was tied with Rutgers for seventh best among major college programs. The major college average was 68 percent.

Dent said the statistics showed Penn State places education ahead of football.

Be Involved! Participate in Electing Three More Trustees!

PSU Board of Trustees

I would appreciate your support! 

       june 20 2010 226  
A Note from Myke

Dear Fellow PSU Alumni,

I would like to take this opportunity to encourage you to be a part of this year’s board of trustee elections.   Many challenges lie ahead in these economic times, including slashes in funding from the state which results in higher tuition costs for the next generation.  Navigating a path through what is necessary and in the best interests of the state, it’s citizens, and the university is of utmost importance.  Economic concerns as well as serving as a moral standard bearer and educational example and leader for the local, state, and national communities all must be top priorities.  Being Penn State Proud is more than a slogan–it is a tradition and responsibility we all uphold.  When we say “We Are Penn State”–we speak as acommunity who stands as one voice.
The Alumni Office at Penn State has sent you a link to place a name in nomination for election to the board.   If you are not a member of the Alumni Association or a contributor to the Penn State Fund, you must request a ballot by sending your full name, year of graduation, major, address and current email, so that the alumni office can verify your eligibility to vote.  You can send that information to and they will send you an email letting you know that you are verified as bona fide PSU graduate.  Please share this information with other PSU graduates you know.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at
Thanks you in advance for being involved.
In support of the Blue and White,
Myke Atwater Triebold PSU, class of ’72 (B.S., Health & P.E) & ’82 (A.T.,C, Sports Medicine)

I am asking for your help in placing my name in nomination for the 2013 election!

Nominations for Board of Trustee Voting Starts Today

If you haven’t received a ballot from Penn State, contact the administrative office at Penn State for your ballot.

Alumni may request a nomination or election ballot by sending an e-mail to, including the following information:

Once your alumni record is qualified, a ballot will be sent to you electronically. Alumni who receive the nomination ballot will automatically receive the election ballot on April 10. There is no need to send additional request to receive a ballot. Alumni who have no internet access must call (814) 865-2521 and provide the above information. Once your alumni record is qualified, a ballot will be mailed to you.


PA Attorney General Explains Granting Lawsuit Authority

Pennsylvania‘s attorney general said she granted Gov. Tom Corbett the authority to file a federal antitrust lawsuit against the NCAA because the litigation could present a conflict of interest as her office prosecutes three Penn State administrators.

Attorney General Linda Kelly told The Associated Press on Thursday that “an actual conflict of interest could, and likely would, arise if this office were involved in both cases.”