President TJ Bard Speaks at Old Main

University Park Undergraduate Association President TJ Bard (@TJBard) will speak from the steps of Old Main at 12:30 p.m. about the recent unprecedented and historic events that have happened over the past week. Recognizing that somehow, people who would consider themselves decent and good let something of unspeakable horror happen at our University, the situation at hand is no easy one. The news has shaken Penn Staters, students, faculty, staff, alumni alike, to their very core.

Now, more than ever, the Penn State student body needs to come together in a joint understanding of what it means to be a Penn State student right now. What does #WEstillARE mean to those of us who will be graduating from this University at its darkest moment in 156 years?

Bard will be talking about how students like us need to come together to restore the glory of Penn State. How, more than ever, we need to be behind our student-athletes, our new president (whose first communiqué was loads better than anything Spanier put out), and our University itself.

We’ll have live coverage of his speech on here, the live blog, and @OnwardState. Stay tuned.

Update 2:01 p.m. Watch a video of Bard’s speech from our photographer Melanie Versaw.

The text of President Bard’s address:

Anger. Frustration. Shame. Sadness. Confusion. We are experiencing a whirlwind of emotions and this pain has undoubtedly swept over our entire Penn State community.

We are full of questions. We are eager for answers. And we will not stop until we get them. But we cannot allow our anger to dominate.. Last night, we watched students crowd the lawn of this very building and charge the streets in which we live. We watched as mayhem built a false sense of community. We must support each other, believe in each other, and stand united during this trying time. We will be strong in numbers but we must remember that we always represent Penn State.

We must stand behind those who have the best interest of this University in mind. We have each other. The students. To trust in. To believe in. We are what makes this university thrive, and we are the ones who must restore Glory to Penn State.

On Saturday wear blue to support the victims. Support our student athletes by standing from kick-off until the victory bell is rung. Sing our Alma Mater out of respect for our founders and the principles that this university was founded on. Remember that you are Penn State, you and your actions reflect directly on all that we stand for. We still are, and always will be, Penn State. Let’s show the world what that means.

Update 12:20 p.m. – Moments before TJ begins speaking, media and his student leader compatriots take their places on either side of the Old Main patio. Live video to follow soon (hopefully).

Update 12:25 p.m. – Another pic, this one via @dailycollegian.

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About the Author


Creator of @OnwardState. Big fan of sweaters.

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