PSU news by
Penn State's student blog



2011 Senior Class Gift: Joe Pa The Redeemer

The 2011 Senior Class Gift was announced yesterday by the Senior Class Gift Committee and will feature a gargantuan statue of Joe Paterno overlooking Happy Valley, a la Christ the Redeemer in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. The project will cost roughly $10 million dollars and the committee is asking for only a small donation from students, a mere $1000, or more if possible. The committee is also looking into burning down one of the campus buildings to collect the insurance money to help fund the project. No word yet on which building will be targeted, but the committee said they will give at least five minutes notice before torching the place.

The statue will be made of a combination of different metals and will be placed on the mountainside in a specific position so that at noon on Saturdays, the sun will hit the statue, causing it to gleam brightly.  The glare from the statue will be able to be seen from miles away, according to architects. The design also allows for the statue to cast a four-mile-long shadow over town.

Much of the metal used to sculpt the monument will come from bleachers and steel beams taken from Beaver Stadium. When asked about the concern of safety for those in Beaver Stadium after many of the steel beams are removed for the project, stadium officials said:

Oh, we didn’t really think about the safety part. I’m sure it’ll be fine, I guess we’ll find out this coming football season.

Some are wildly against the Joe Pa the Redeemer statue, however, and instead would like to see a more prominent or famous individual that has contributed more to Penn State than Joe Paterno. Some suggestions included President Graham Spanier kneeling on a chair, newly elected UPUA President Christian Ragland sitting atop a golden throne, or one of the Willard preachers holding a large, illuminated bible that could be seen throughout the valley at night.

Other opponents to the monument argue that the monument’s current cost estimates don’t do Joe Paterno justice and would like to see even more money go into the monument’s creation. University official Tanner Reisling said:

Joe Pa has dedicated his entire life to this university, and how do we honor him, by building a monument made of scrap metal and bleachers? I’ve spoken to a lot of people and there is a general consensus that it should be made of solid gold.

Many, however, don’t want to see the statue made at all. Environmental studies major Callista Wilder said of the statues impact on the environment:

Such a massive statue would severely disrupt the habitats of the three-toe rats, a rare and indigenous species to the Nittany Mountains. They’re ugly, yes, and they have been known to cause horrendous diseases in humans and become aggressively violent, but these wonderful, hideous creatures must be preserved.

Joe Pa the Redeemer has already been selected as the final choice for the 2011 Senior Class Gift by the committee, whose spokesperson said:

We didn’t really feel like waiting for the students to vote on it. They mocked last year’s gift proposals, so screw ’em.

Construction is set to begin in May and the monument should be completed by the end of the summer.

About the Author

Tom Kent

I was born in Virginia Beach, raised in Westfield, NJ, went to college at Penn State, moved to Miami, FL. Peruvian on mom's side and English on my Dad's. I'm a Journalism major and Political Science minor. I do not currently own any reptiles.


More by Tom

2010 Midterm Elections Voting Guide Roundup

The 2010 midterm elections are today, and if you’re voting, which you should be, you’re probably going to need help deciding which candidates you choose when you go to the polls today between classes.

Faculty Senate Approves New Minor Requirements

Mayor Goreham to Hold Office Hours in the HUB


North Dakota Interested In Playing Against Penn State Hockey In Nashville

North Dakota is working towards an agreement that will see its hockey team play against Penn State in Nashville during the 2020-21 season.

Former Cal Swimmer Says She Emailed Sandy Barbour About Sexual Harassment Claims

Max Sauve Commits To Penn State Hockey

Penn State Women’s Volleyball Releases 2018 Schedule

Penn State Hoops Alumnus Joonas Suotamo’s Journey To Becoming Chewbacca Featured On ESPN’s ‘E:60’

Student Life

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting On A Service Trip

When Abby Wilt went on a service trip to Nassau, Bahamas, she had no idea she’d meet the love of her life.

10 Questions With 2019 Class Gift Director Tom Beeby

Career Services To Launch Integrated Career Management & Recruiting Platform

Plans Submitted For New KFC In State College

Developers have submitted preliminary land development plans to build a new KFC restaurant at 1780 S. Atherton St. in State College.

State Theatre Recognized As A State College Historic Site

As it approaches the 80th anniversary of its opening, the State Theatre has been recognized as a State College historic site.

Penn State Love Stories: A Chance Meeting On A Service Trip

When Abby Wilt went on a service trip to Nassau, Bahamas, she had no idea she’d meet the love of her life.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

10 Questions With 2019 Class Gift Director Tom Beeby

Tom Beeby will serve as the 2019 Class Gift Executive Director.

Send this to a friend