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U Listen, They Win: U Report Podcast Wins Award

The goal is simple: interview a Penn Stater every week to dig deep into the true Penn State community and present it to the public in the form of a podcast. Now, two years after its inception, the “U Report” has won the 2011 Society for New Communications Research Award of Excellence in the Internal Communications/Academic Division of the SNCR program.

The podcast started in 2009 when its founders, Christina McNeil, John Dolan, and Shannon Ritter, founded the “O Report” after, according to the group’s website, McNeil tweeted her desire to host a radio show. Dolan and Riter joined her to produce a podcast designed to spotlight a member of the Penn State Outreach team, and it developed into more than the group could have ever imagined.

The award, which is presented by the Society for New Communications Research, was announced after nominations were submitted as case studies and reviewed by the group’s fellows before picking 25 winners.

“What a thrill it is to be recognized by the Society for New Communications Research,” Dolan said in a press release. “Shannon, Christina and I have a great time producing the podcast and meeting so many interesting people who all contribute to what makes Penn State what it is.”

The group has interviewed people from every part of the campus, from the Blue Band to workers at the bakery to the head of the Penn State Paranormal group, and they plan on continuing the podcast now that they have won the award.

“It’s fun learning about what people do and what inspires them. Being able to share those stories with others, to help make connections between people and the work of the University, is rewarding and what I most enjoy,” McNeil said in the release.

This is the sixth year the SNCR has given out the award.

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About the Author

Greg Pickel

Content Contributor for all things Penn State and member of the Pennsylvania Sports Network.

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