In his 44 seasons as head coach of the Nittany Lions, Joe Paterno has seen significant changes and advancements for academics and athletics at Penn State. Now thanks to a gift from the people at Nike, Paterno's tradition for encouraging academic success will be honored in the library as well. To honor Joe Paterno's historic 400th win, Nike has made a $400,000 contribution to the University Libraries. Officials from the university expressed their gratitude in an official release on Monday.
Barbara I. Dewey, dean of the University Libraries and Scholarly Communications, said, "This gift will help the Libraries keep pace with evolving student needs, by funding parts of the Tombros/McWhirter Knowledge Commons in Pattee and Paterno Libraries, slated for construction late spring 2011." As planned, the Knowledge Commons focuses on undergraduate students and is a collection of innovative and traditional services and repurposed physical spaces that facilitate information discovery, collaborative learning, and knowledge building. "Technology-rich and student-centered, the Knowledge Commons is designed to meet the needs of today's Penn State students, who create work in digital and multimedia formats," said Dewey.Joe and his wife, Sue, have contributed more than $4 million across his 45-year career in Happy Valley, including aid specifically for the libraries. One of the libraries is already named for the Paterno family, but it sounds like these efforts will be focused much more on technology-based advancements for undergraduate students.
Hey, maybe now Paterno will figure out how to use Twitter. But I'm not holding my breath.