Penn State is the Best of…State College



At first glance, I was genuinely expecting big news. For 2009, the State College Magazine poll voted Penn State the ‘Best Place to Work’ in the…[Oh gosh, this is gonna be good]…region?  Uhm, question: What the hell else is there to do in State College?

In the midst of such vast, urbanized territory and boisterous competition, it’s a wonder how they managed to narrow it down! You mean to tell me that the largest university in the nation offers the best place to work in all of State College? Bullshit!

Who on Earth wouldn’t want to be fostered and spoon-fed government funds, crazy benefits, and a rising salary despite an economic recession? Check the comments for why those are crossed out.

No, seriously, can someone tell me what institutions competed with Penn State in this poll?  I mean, were there close seconds or thirds?



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  1. Not sure how the mag does its ranking, but if its just on # of votes, that’s crazy. PSU employs almost 20 times more employees than the second largest employer, State Colllege Area School District. At the very least, they ought to do it by votes divided by employees.

    Other major employers in the area include Mount Nittany Medical Center, Hawbaker, Raytheon, HRI, and Minitab.

    Spoon-fed government funds? And nobody got a raise around here last year. Penn State’s a good place to work, but you seem to have some odd ideas about the place.

  2. Penn State’s statement on raises this year was specifically that “there will be no non-union raises in 2009.” There are plenty of teamsters-unionized employees for whom the University provided raises.

    On the topic of research dollars, I’m not sure I’d call them spoon-fed. Penn State works hard for them, and receives them because we churn out good research (and perhaps because we already do $700 million in federal contracting work per year).

  3. Anybody who thinks grant funds are spoon-fed needs to be beaten over the head with that spoon. The typical grant program has about a 10 percent fund rate. So, even if you are twice as good as the average faculty member, you have to write 5 grants (think 5 20 page papers better than anything you’ve ever dreamed of writing) just to get one grant. Most faculty members need to have 2-3 of these going at one time to get tenure and be in line for merit increases. They typically last 2-4 years, so you are constantly writing new ones. Most faculty around here work 60-70 hour weeks, and those without tenure work even more.

    No, the unionized employees at Penn State did not get an increase this year. Their scheduled increase was deferred. The only increases were people who changed jobs or were promoted.

    • And boom goes the dynamite…

      Looks like I was definitely wrong on the raises and incorrect in my assessment of the federal funds. We stand corrected. Thanks GTWMA. Updating the post accordingly now.

  4. Like the corrections, so back to the point of your post…any ranking that didn’t take into account the huge difference in numbers of employees is crazy. To my knowledge, Restek and Minitab are the only employers based in Centre County who have been named to the “Best Places to Work in PA” since 2000. Restek’s been on the list at least 3 times, I think.