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Staff Picks: Penn State’s Christmas List

Happy holidays, folks.

In the spirit of Christmas, our staffers couldn’t help but list some of our biggest wishes for Penn State. From a mascot alteration to five-star dining, there’s no shortage of asks for Penn State from our staff.

Our staff is thankful for the places that bring us together and truly make Penn State feel like home. However, we have just a few things on our Christmas list we think the university should consider adding to our beautiful campus this holiday season.

Mikey DeAngelis: A Pedestrian-Only Downtown Street

While this isn’t specific to campus or the university, I think having a pedestrian-only section of downtown State College would add to the feeling of community that’s already present here in Happy Valley. Other towns like Charlottesville, Virginia, and Boulder, Colorado, which are adjacent to the University of Virginia and the University of Colorado, have sections of their downtowns that are car-free.

I think Allen Street would make a great pedestrian-only street for a variety of reasons, like its location in the center of downtown and its proximity to campus. I also don’t think closing Allen Street to cars would significantly change the flow of traffic through downtown State College.

Rico Gore: Michigan State’s Heated Sidewalks

Did you know that Michigan State has heated sidewalks? I didn’t until my cousin went to school there. Apparently, it snows so much in East Lansing that they decided to build heaters under all of their campus sidewalks. This means no more potential slips on the ice, no more snow plows trying to run you off the path, and no more sopping wet shoes walking into class.

It would be so convenient to not have to worry about the snow or ice when there’s inclement weather on campus. Also, I believe this would help our beloved OPP so much. Gone would be the days of waking up insanely early to plow campus sidewalks. Now, it would just be a flip of the heated sidewalks switch.

Joe Lister: A Dude With A Sword (USC)

This Christmas, I want Penn State to get USC’s mascot (the real USC, not the frauds in South Carolina). Yes, my USC fan bias is showing, but the Trojan is the coolest mascot in college sports. It’s a big dude with a big sword on a big horse. I love the Nittany Lion as much as anyone else, I just want to see the Trojan stab centerfield with his sword. Shoot, I’ll take the swords in my apartment and do it myself.

Hailey Stutzman: Alabama’s Light Show

Being an Alabama football fan seems pretty incredible for a couple of reasons. Going to the playoff almost every year is a big plus for its fans, but the best part of the football games is the light show. Watching the student section at Alabama go crazy because of the school’s state-of-the-art lighting is simply infuriating because Penn State could’ve the same thing. While I know Penn State has the best student section in the country, some awesome lights couldn’t hurt.

Ryan Banks: The Five-Star Duke Dining Hall

Recently, while in a TikTok rabbit hole, I came across videos of the Duke University dining hall food. I love just about everything about Penn State, but if there’s one thing we could fix, it’d be the food in the dining halls. Duke students have things like steak and good-looking slices of pizza. We don’t ask for much, but can we please get some food like this?

Charlie Pegler: A City Atmosphere

The reason I came to Penn State is because of its isolation from everyone else and the camaraderie that this fact builds. However, after making trips to both Georgetown and the University of Texas, I’ve become a bit jealous of the city life these schools present. It may be a little bit of a big ask for Christmas, but hey, Santa can make anything happen!

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