For the First Time, PSU “Facebook Frat” Whistleblower Speaks Out

Penn State students in March protest against Kappa Delta Rho.

Penn State students in March protest against Kappa Delta Rho.

For what appears to be the first time, the ex-member of Penn State’s Kappa Delta Rho chapter who prompted a police investigation into the fraternity is speaking out publicly about his allegations.

James Vivenzio told the authorities in January that Kappa Delta Rho had operated two private Facebook pages where members posted photographs of nude, unconscious women, hazing and drug sales. Shortly thereafter, police filed an affidavit of probable cause detailing the alleged pages named “Covert Business Transactions” and “2.0.”

This week, Penn State announced that it is shutting down the local chapter for three years following its own investigation.

Vivenzio released a statement about the frat’s suspension through his lawyer, Aaron Freiwald, late Thursday: Read more »

Penn State Closes “Facebook Frat”

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Penn State students in March protest against Kappa Delta Rho.

Penn State on Tuesday ordered the Kappa Delta Rho fraternity on campus be closed for three years, a decision reached after spring revelations that members of the fraternity had posted pictures of nude, unconscious women to a private Facebook page.

“The investigative report makes clear that some members of the KDR chapter promoted a culture of harassing behavior and degradation of women. These are not acceptable actions within a student organization that is recognized and supported by Penn State,” said Damon Sims, vice president for Student Affairs, in a letter to university’s Interfraternity Council. “We must respond accordingly, and we hope by doing so it is clearly understood that our University will not tolerate such actions.” Read more »

Penn State’s Barron Calls for Frat “Early Warning” System

Eric Barron

Penn State President Eric Barron is calling for an “early warning system” that would help the university confront misbehavior at frats and sororities on campus before it gets out of hand, the Morning Call reports.

Barron didn’t describe the details of such a system, but his proposal comes in the wake of this spring’s reports that the Kappa Delta Rho fraternity had posted photos of nude, unconcious women to a private Facebook page. That made international headlines, magnified when an anonymous fraternity member dismissed the matter as “humorous, albeit possibly misguided, antics of a bunch of college kids.” Read more »

Penn State AD: Paterno’s Legacy Will Be Restored

 (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

How long before Joe Paterno’s statue returns to Happy Valley?

With the sidelining of most NCAA sanctions following the Jerry Sandusky scandal and the restoration of Paterno’s wins record, the full restoration of JoePa’s legacy on campus has seemed only a matter of time. Sandy Barbour, Penn State’s new athletic director, basically confirmed that this week in an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer.

“I have no doubt that at the right time, as some of the legal issues have been sorted through . . . Penn State will honor not only Joe Paterno’s legacy but the Paterno family’s legacy,” Barbour told the Inky’s editorial board. “We’ll know when it’s time.” Read more »

Penn State Students to Tom Wolf: Help End “Epidemic” of Campus Sex Assault

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They’ve called out the mighty Penn State administration. They’ve organized rallies in support of women who were allegedly pictured nude and unconscious on websites run by the school’s Kappa Delta Rho chapter. And now, they’re knocking on Gov. Tom Wolf‘s door.

Penn State senior Lauren Lewis and alumnus Josephine Rose met Friday with John Hanger, Wolf’s secretary of policy and planning, to urge the him “to do everything possible within his authority to ensure that campus sexual assault survivors are supported and protected.”

Read more »

Ruling in Lynn Case Could be Bad for Penn State Defendants

Former Penn State President Graham Spanier is one of three former university officials charged with child endangerment in the Jerry Sandusky case.

Former Penn State President Graham Spanier is one of three former university officials charged with child endangerment in the Jerry Sandusky case.

This week’s reinstatement of Monsignor William Lynn’s conviction on child endangerment charges will have repercussions  in the cases of three former Penn State officials facing similar charges in the Jerry Sandusky case, PennLive reports.

Lynn had argued that he could not be charged under Pennsylvania statute since he never cared directly for children, but instead supervised those who did. Former Penn State President Graham Spanier, former Senior Vice President for Business and Finance Gary Schultz and former Athletic Director Tim Curley were expected to mount a similar defense. Read more »

Headlines: Could New Dorms Help Local Penn State Branches Compete?

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Universities around the city are rapidly expanding their footprint in order to give their institution the edge when it comes to attracting students and faculty. We know all about the boom at Penn, Drexel and Temple. Now, it’s a few local Penn State branches that are looking to get into the action.

Natalie Kostelni of the Philadelphia Business Journal reports that two satellite campuses–Abington and Brandywine in Media–are developing plans to construct new dorms “as a way to compete for students and give them a traditional college experience.” Both schools offer four year degrees and some students don’t want to make the move up to Happy Valley. That doesn’t mean they want to commute from home or miss out of the magical experience of living in the dorms.

Kostelni reports that the Brandywine plan is further along at this point. The $40 million project would contain a four-story residence hall with 248 beds. Plans also call for the construction of a “two-story student affairs center that would have a dining facility, health center, recreational facilities as well as other operations needed to support on-campus living.” Construction could start as early as 2016 and be completed by fall 2017.

Penn State to build dorms on Philadelphia-area campuses [Philadelphia Business Journal]

Citified to the Rescue (and More Headlines):

Read more »

The Price of Joe Paterno’s Reputation? About $13,500 Per Win

 (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

(AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

Let’s be fair here: Given the expense of big-time college athletics, it probably cost way more than $13,500 apiece for Penn State to earn each of the 111 victories that were eventually erased from Joe Paterno‘s record following the Jerry Sandusky scandal.

But the legal bills for the fight to restore those victories have come due, and PennLive reports today the final tally amounts to about $1.5 million — or, roughly, the aforementioned $13,500 per restored victory. Read more »

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