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No Network Found: Things More Reliable Than Penn State Wi-Fi

If you’re living on campus this semester, you’ve probably felt like fighting Penn State’s Wi-Fi connections at one point or another. Inconsistent to a fault and guaranteeing Canvas casualties, on-campus internet fights students back with no mercy and promises disappointment to drive even the strongest students mad.

As every student knows by now, Penn State’s Wi-Fi is unreliable on a good day and borderline broken on the worst. Connections are especially bad in any public building like Willard or the HUB, and outages always seem to strike whenever you’re about to submit a timed quiz or fire up a Zoom call.

In fact, it feels practically impossible to depend on a Penn State Wi-Fi connection. To put the stakes into perspective, we rounded up some phenomenons on campus that are somehow more reliable than connecting to “psu”.

The Bloop When You’re Late To Class

Overslept and running to the stop in your pajamas? Might as well switch to a morning stroll because that bus is not coming anytime soon. When late on Monday morning, it’s the rule of nature that our beloved Blue Loop is running late as well, so don’t count on CATA to make it to class. Relying on that Blue Loop run might seem like a bright idea initially, but beware of the bus schedule. Even when that bus is almost certainly late, we’re convinced you have a better chance of making it to your 8 a.m. before 9 a.m. than ever getting a reliable internet connection in Willard.

LionCash Balance At Checkout

At checkout, college students are scanning and sweating every single time. As the semester rages on, our cash flow hits unprecedented lows before you head home for Thanksgiving to ask your parents for some more. The infamous “insufficient funds” message threatens every transaction, and counting on this balance will leave you counting coins on the floor of your dorm the following evening.

No one really knows how much is left on there, and relying on this balance to buy some food or groceries is a surefire way to embarrass at checkout. Your transaction from hell is way more likely to go through than that “u up?” text sent on Penn State Wi-Fi at 2 a.m. tonight. Perhaps that’s for the best on this one.

Your Friend’s Pin At The Tailgate

Every Penn Stater knows the feeling of navigating the tailgate lots. In trying to locate our friends among hundreds of thousands of people, we also sure know that a location sent via iMessage doesn’t always get the job done. So many things go wrong here, and relying on the pin to get you to your destination is the easiest way to miss the family cornhole tournament. Whether your friend forgot to send the addy or your parent can’t figure out how to find it, you might as well be stranded. Still, you’re more likely to find the almighty parking spot through a friend’s pin than ever mobile order your Edge caramel macchiato on Penn State Wi-Fi.

SEC Refs’ Ability To Count To Four

We’ll never forget this one. Even though “Beat Auburn” became Penn State’s beautiful reality, there’s no denying that SEC refs can’t seem to make it to four downs without skipping at least one.

Let’s avoid some counting here, too, and make sure we’re not depending on Penn State’s Wi-Fi. Still, we’d rather place a bet on an SEC official completing some rudimentary math than finding a working connection in the HUB.

Your Headphones In Pollock Testing Center

Upon entering what can only be described as a dystopian reality of every college student’s nightmares, a listening portion of a language exam presents a unique combination of stress and failure out of one’s hands. Wired headphones with a 3.5 mm jack are required here, yet headphones bought from any Penn State commons fall flat when the Canvas timer’s counting down. Your AirPods or Beats will also leave you longing for the wired life of the 2000s as well.

Don’t rely on those headphones to help you grab those points, as plugging them into your assigned testing station will leave you less than satisfied at that damning silence. Hopefully, this one’s curved. Still, we’re convinced you’re more likely to pass this exam than ever send an iMessage to Mom back home.

Your Phone Battery On Gameday

With mobile ticketing being used across the board this season, our iPhone batteries are always in danger. A daylong test of SIM endurance and selfie self-control reminds us of the struggle of saving battery until go-time. Mobile ticketing makes your battery even more important, and relying on it to get into Beaver Stadium creates a struggle for all fans.

Even with the lifeline of low power mode, we all know your phone battery can never be trusted to get you into the stadium with more than 20% of power left. Still, you’re still more likely to have full battery than make your gameday Facebook post go up.

A Frat Boy’s Breakfast Invite

Looking for a second date on Sunday morning? Well, we wouldn’t count on it. With formal season upon us and great nights to be had, we wouldn’t dare rely on the frat house to whip up some eggs and bacon the next day. After a magical night in State College, counting on the venue (or your date) for your next meal is the best way to get blacklisted from all future events.

While pledges are plentiful and nonsense is nonstop, expecting some 7 a.m. hospitality will leave you hoofing it to Waffle Shop or Bagel Crust solo for your recovery meal. While you can’t rely on your date for an omelet the next morning, UberEats or GrubHub will always be your friend. Finding some grub looks like a guarantee in comparison to checking your inbox to load during class, though.

A Table For Four At The Field

An absolute staple of parents’ paychecks and State College dining, The Field is the place you bring your folks when they visit. Unfortunately, that seems to be exactly the problem — EVERY student wants a table.

Looking to impress your parents this weekend? Don’t rely on getting a table here unless you’re looking for a decent wait on an empty stomach. Even if there were zero possibility of sitting before 9 p.m., we’d take our chances on the Franklin Burger before logging into Penn State’s Wi-Fi.

Student Section Carrying The Lion

Each week, we’ve seen various degrees of success in keeping our mighty mascot airborne while crowd surfing in Beaver Stadium. With ups and downs and everything in between, the student section has a less-than-stellar crowd surfing record this season. Students dropped the Nittany Lion twice. Twice!

While the last home game showed student section gains keeping our guy in the air, history proves you just can’t count on this group to get our Lion flying high each week. Despite the infamous nosedive at Penn State’s season-opener, we’d place our bets on students’ muscles before the strength of Penn State Wi-Fi.


Unlike our internet connection, stay strong, students. With the return to in-person classes, Zoom should go extinct soon enough. In the meantime, think about tipping your local ResCom worker and springing for the unlimited data plan next semester.

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About the Author

Lizzie Palmieri

Lizzie Palmieri is a current sophomore with an undecided major from Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Ask her about Disney World, Diet Pepsi or dancing on the Jumbotron at Beaver Stadium. When not causing general trouble, Lizzie enjoys playing golf, performing in theatre, and being the CEO of reorganizing the fridge. Her favorite thing to do is hang with her sassy sidekick, 17-year-old Italian Greyhound, Macaroni. Follow her on Twitter @lizziepalmieri if your deepest desire is bestie vibes only.

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