PSU news by
Penn State's student blog



Penn State a Top 10 Party School Once Again

Call it a blessing. Call it a travesty. Call it whatever you want, but Penn State is back as one of the top 10 party schools in the country.

That special Monday in August came yet again yesterday, as the Princeton Review unveiled its list of the top 20 party schools in nation. Never is there a better example of the juxtaposition in thought between the student body and the administration, with most students gunning for a high ranking while administrators — particularly in the Office of Student Affairs — dread another top 10 appearance by their respective learning institution.

Penn State came in at No. 9 this year — two spots up from last year’s eleventh place. The Princeton Review collects surveys from hundreds of students at each school to generate its rankings. Here’s more on the methodology.

It has only been four years, but it seems so long ago that Penn State stood at the top of the party school list and then-president Graham Spanier made his infamous “web-based thing” comment.*

(*Spanier brushed aside the number one ranking at the time, saying defiantly and erroneously “You know why we’re ranked number one? Have we talked about this? You know why we’re ranked number one? The students vote! It’s not like somebody came in here and did an assessment of the place. It’s an online, web-based thing. And whenever there’s an online, web-based thing, Penn State always wins.”)

It took Joe Dado’s tragic death after a night of drinking in 2009 for the university to get serious about the party culture at Penn State.

President Spanier rolled out a 30-point plan in 2010 that aimed to punish the booze out of his students. First-time alcohol policy offenders would be required by Student Affairs to pay $200 to take BASICS (Brief Alcohol Screening and Intervention for College Students) class — a two part session that most students have found unenlightening. Any alcohol violation would result in parental notification, both on and off campus, despite the whole “you’re an adult now” college orientation pitch. Senior week — the once-glorious week after finals before commencement —  was eliminated forever. The IFC, faced with mounting pressure from the administration, tightened its belt on alcohol consumption at fraternities. We all know the State Patty’s Day saga by now.

And despite all of that administrative bloat, here we are at number nine four years later, unfazed.

Here’s the rest of the top 10. You’ll notice three other Big Ten schools on the list, including 2014’s top party school, Iowa (because really, what else is there to do in Iowa?)

1. University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa

2. University of California, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, Calif.

3. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Ill.

4. West Virginia University, Morgantown W. Va.

5. Syracuse University, Syracuse, N.Y.

6. University of Florida, Gainesville, Fla.

7. Ohio University, Athens, Ohio

8. University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, Wis.

9. Penn State University, University Park, Pa.

10. Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pa.

About the Author

Kevin Horne

Kevin Horne was the editor of Onward State from 2012-2014 and currently holds the position of Managing Editor Emeritus, which is a fake title he made up. He graduated from Penn State with degrees journalism and political science in 2014 and is currently seeking his J.D. at the Penn State Dickinson School of Law. A third generation Penn Stater from Williamsport, Pa., Kevin is also the president of the graduate student government. Email: [email protected]


More by Kevin

Hometown Brewery Releases Beer Honoring Evan Pugh

Penn State’s first president Evan Pugh was born in 1828 at Jordan Bank Farm, three miles south of the city center of Oxford, Pennsylvania, an hour west of Philadelphia in Chester County. One-hundred eighty-nine years later, an Oxford brewery is honoring one of the preeminent champions of “liberal and practical” higher education in the form of a delicious Porter.

Penn State Basketball Downs Colgate 72-59 In Front of Thanksgiving Eve Crowd

Why Honoring Paterno Still Matters


Former Women’s Gymnastics Coach Files Lawsuit Against Penn State Over Handling Of Abuse Allegations

Former Penn State women’s gymnastics head coach Jeff Thompson has filed a lawsuit against the university following the termination of his contract in February 2017. Thompson, alongside his wife and associate head coach Rachelle Thompson, was accused by former gymnasts and an assistant coach of creating a hostile team environment. The Thompsons allegedly pressured athletes to compete […]

Men’s Soccer Trio, Reading United Win PDL Eastern Conference Title, Fall Short Of National Championship

Penn State Hockey’s Evan Barratt, Aarne Talvitie Participate In World Junior Summer Showcase

Ally McHugh Wins 400 Medley National Championship

Penn State Women’s Soccer Adds Swiss Forward Kim Dubs

Student Life

Girirajan Lab Seeks To Bridge The Gap Between Fly And Human Genomes

The lab uses a combination of human genomics, computational biology, and functional studies, using Drosophila and human cell lines, to understand the risks caused by genetic mutations and to grasp how gene disruption leads to altered neurodevelopment.

Join Onward State: Fall 2018 Application

Pennharmonics To Hold 25th Anniversary Reunion Concert

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.

Join Onward State: Fall 2018 Application

Onward State is hiring for the fall semester and we’d love you to join us.

Mayor Don Hahn Asks Borough Council To Consider Changes To Proposed Overnight Parking Restrictions

State College Mayor Don Hahn posted on his blog Sunday republishing a letter he sent to Borough Council on August 1 outlining three revisions he’d like them to consider for the proposed overnight parking restrictions.

Be the first to know

  • Top posts and the best Penn State stories

Thank you for subscribing.

Something went wrong.

Madden NFL 19 Ratings For Nittany Lions

For the second consecutive year, Sean Lee is the highest-rated Nittany Lion in the Madden video game.

Send this to a friend