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Penn State Discontinues On-Campus Cable Following Decreased Usage

Penn State has officially discontinued cable service in most of its on-campus residence halls following a drop off in usage, the university said.

Despite being discontinued in all dorms, those living in on-campus apartments, including White Course or Nittany Apartments, will still have access. Students living in those dorms will still have access to cable in the buildings, lobbies, and meeting rooms.

The service’s shutdown actually came back in the summer, but few students were around to actually notice.

According to Director or Housing Operations Conal Carr, Housing made the change due to cable services’ low usage and the ongoing costs of maintaining students’ access.

Back in spring 2019, Housing found 62% of on-campus students had never used their cable, while 14% used it one day a week or less. While conducting a visual inspection of students’ rooms over a semester break, Penn State observed just 18% of students actually had a cable jack hooked up.

“It made sense to use the funds that were committed to cable for other student services, such as WiFi,” Carr said.

Although cutting cable came rather suddenly, plans had actually been in the works for a long while. Carr said Housing had first discussed the plan with the Association of Residence Hall students twice during the 2019-20 academic year.

Carr added the ongoing coronavirus pandemic made it tough to properly communicate the changes with students.

“Of course, with the onset of COVID, and the closing of the halls after spring break, we were not able to communicate with the residents as we normally do,” Carr said.

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About the Author

Ryen Gailey

Ryen is a senior early childhood education major from "right outside of Philly" - or in exact words, from 23.0 miles outside of Philly. She loves all things Penn State and has been a huge Penn State gal since before she could walk. Send her pictures of puppies, or hate mail at [email protected]

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