PSU President: Paterno Realized 'Grand Experiment'

UNIVERSITY PARK, CENTRE COUNTY - The Faculty Senate gathered Tuesday to consider the idea of forming a committee to investigate the university's actions following the Jerry Sandusky scandal. However, faculty members first heard from university president Rodney Erickson about Joe Paterno.

University leaders spoke of Paterno who's being remembered this week. Meantime, an effort to create an investigatory committee failed in the Faculty Senate's session. The Board of Trustees, NCAA and the U.S. Department of Education are investigating Penn State.

At this point, the Faculty Senate will not.

President Erickson spoke of the iconic Paterno as a man who had high expectations.

"Joe will always be remembered for the 'grand experiment,' the idea that high-quality academics would go hand-and-hand with the highest caliber of championship athletic performance," said Erickson. 

Also important to the faculty is making sure the university gets an impartial review of how alleged child sex abuse was reported to university administrators in 2002. The state attorney general is prosecuting former football assistant coach Jerry Sandusky. Some faculty members want an off-campus committee to discover if there were any missteps in reporting.

"It is potentially problematic that six members of the nine-member task force to which Judge Freeh will report are members of the board," said one senator.

"I do not understand how the current process meets the standards that we as faculty have been charged with to do research," said another.

But, when a vote came up a majority of faculty members disapproved the motion. Some senators say they were satisfied with a recent presentation from former FBI director and judge Louis Freeh who's the board's chief investigator.

A "vote of no confidence," also failed Tuesday. Trustees say they will deliver a fair review of the university's reporting at the end of their investigation.

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