Penn State reveals portion of PR response to child-molestation scandal

January 5, 2012

The Associated Press reports that Pennsylvania State University's board of trustees and president focused on repairing the institution's tarnished image and prepared for financial backlash immediately following the child-molestation scandal. According to internal memos circulated in mid-November, Penn State's new president, Rodney Erickson, told the board that the institution's PR teams and the athletic department had met to "align our messages." One memo from Erickson included an attachment with "talking points" for donors, including that Penn State had not changed its policy that donations are not returned. In another memo, the president told the board that the Penn State Marketing Council was asked to help identify pressing needs, citing admissions as one area requiring attention. A Penn State spokeswoman says the memos show the president and board working "to reinforce all the positive elements" of the university while addressing the scandal. Associated Press