Penn State’s image tainted indelibly—and PR can’t help

The child-sex scandal—and the university’s multiple missteps afterward—have tarnished its reputation long-term, if not permanently.

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Over the weekend, former football assistant coach Jerry Sandusky was arrested on charges of sexually abusing eight boys over a 15-year span. Sandusky retired abruptly from the Nittany Lions program in 1999. The charges against him are serious, but what happened behind the scenes at the university is just as deplorable.

Penn State’s director of athletics Tim Curley and former interim senior vice president for business and finance Gary Schultz were each charged with one count of perjury and one count of failure to report suspected child abuse. Both were arraigned and released on bail Nov. 7.

According to the grand jury’s findings, both Curley and Schultz were aware that Sandusky engaged in “sexual conduct” with a young boy in a shower located in the Lasch Football Building and did not notify police. The charges go even higher.

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