PENN STATE NEWS:
Story, Photo and Video Guidelines
For members of the college community:
Please submit your submissions through our News Release Submission Form. Members of the editorial team will reach out if there are questions; otherwise, please know that your submission will be considered.
All material submitted for publication on University news platforms is subject to review and editing. Final decisions for publication and appropriate platforms for an item rest with the Penn State News and Media Relations editorial staff. Items not listed here will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
As part of our mission to promote and raise awareness of Penn State Berks, our target audience for news releases includes prospective students and their families, the general public, and the news media. Broadly speaking, we promote news stories that support the college’s Admissions and Retention goals and the Strategic Plan. We are always interested in stories about students that help illustrate the benefits of attending Penn State Berks.
Strategic Communications covers college-sponsored events that take place on Penn State Berks campus and may be of interest to our target audience, such as Admissions events, the Arts and Lecture series, and many others. Certain events that are not held on Penn State Berks campus also may be covered, including but not limited to:
- Off-campus events that are part of a larger college-sponsored conference or event
- Major town-and-gown initiatives with a strong Penn State component
- Other outreach activities taking place in the community may be covered at the discretion of the editorial team.
What we do not publish:
- Information of a commercial nature.
- Information about events whose registration deadlines have passed, or that are not open to the general public.
- Faculty serving on panels
- Lectures given by faculty or staff at another institution that are not part of a national or international conference.
- Book or poetry readings and book signings by faculty, staff, students or administrators will not be covered, regardless of the location of the event.
- Stories profiling services offered by units, departments or offices at the University that do not contain news of new initiatives.
- In most cases, recurring announcements only will be published once per semester.
News of Record
The following is a list of guidelines governing the selection of items for the College's News of Record, which includes announcements about:
- 25-year awards
- Awards and Achievements
- Grants and Contract Awards
- Partings and Passings
- Faculty Publications
News of record items will meet the following criteria:
- Information and photos for 25-year awards, which recognize a faculty or staff member's service to the University covered.
- Appointment announcements will be published for individuals who have been newly appointed to serve on the Penn State Board of Trustees; for the university president, provost and campus chancellors; and for those who report directly to the university president, the provost, or a campus chancellor.
- Appointments to other key university leadership positions will be announced at the discretion of the News and Media Relations editorial team.
- Interim appointments to the above positions will qualify for an announcement.
Awards and achievements
Penn State News may publish stories for members of the faculty and staff who:
- make significant contributions in areas such as the arts or music;
- receive such awards as Guggenheim or NATO fellowships;
- receive a national or international award from professional associations and organizations, or are elected as officers or fellows thereof;
- are appointed to a national or international committee;
- are appointed editor-in-chief of a recognized academic journal;
- are invited plenary/keynote speakers or serve on a panel at an international or national meeting;
- are selected as visiting scholars;
- are named distinguished alumnus/alumna or awarded an honorary doctorate by an educational institution
- present Congressional testimony; or
- receive Fulbright awards
University-wide faculty and staff awards: Announcement of University-wide faculty and staff awards is made through Penn State News and Media Relations in conjunction with the Office of the President. Stories about the recipients of these awards may not be released by any campus, college or unit before the official announcements are published by Penn State News. Awards that fall into this category are:
Undergraduate Faculty Teaching Awards
- Milton S. Eisenhower Award for Distinguished Teaching
- George W. Atherton Award for Excellence in Teaching
- Penn State Teaching Fellow
- Alumni/Student Award for Excellence in Teaching
- Penn State Excellence in Advising Award
- President's Award for Excellence in Academic Integration
- President's Award for Engagement with Students
- Undergraduate Program Leadership Award
Graduate Faculty Teaching Awards:
- Howard B. Palmer Faculty Mentoring Award
- Graduate faculty Teaching Award
- Graduate Program Chair Leadership Award
Faculty & Staff Achievement Awards:
- Barash Award for Human Service
- McKay Donkin Award
- Award for Administrative Excellence
- Staff Excellence Award
- Support Staff Award
- James Robinson Equal Opportunity Award
- W. LaMarr Kopp International Faculty & Staff Achievement Award
- Penn State Award for Faculty Outreach
Grants and Contract Awards
- News of grants and contract awards received by members of the University faculty will be reviewed and announced for those of significant importance to the college's mission.
- Faculty publication announcements will include information about faculty members who have written or edited a book. Information submitted should include author's name and professional title, the title of the publication, the name of the publisher and short description of the book's contents. Announcements will be made only for books that have been published.
- Links to commercial publishing sites will not be included.
- Information about book chapters or journal articles will not be published.
- News of vanity press and Internet books will be published on a case-by-case basis.
- Brief information about upcoming lectures will be published on Penn State News. All featured lectures must be given by a member of the University community, and must be open to the public. Lectures should be announced in advance.
Partings and Passings
- Penn State News may publish obituary information for active members of the faculty and staff or administration. Obituary information for retired faculty, staff, administrators and board members, and information for other individuals with significant ties to Penn State, may be run at the editors? discretion. A photograph of the individual should be included when available.
- Retirement announcements, including photos, will be run for the university president, the provost and campus chancellors, and for those who report directly to the above individuals.
- Retirement announcements also may be submitted for faculty or staff with more than 25 years of service, and for faculty who hold emeritus rank or distinguished professor status.
- Penn State News will publish retirement announcements for other individuals at the editors? discretion.
At the editors' discretion, Penn State News will publish stories about officially endorsed fundraising efforts that directly benefit a University scholarship or endowment. All such stories must be vetted by Development and Alumni Relations communications.
Event announcements (listed here: http://news.psu.edu/calendar) that are submitted for publication on Penn State News and related platforms should meet the following criteria:
- Each entry will include the title of the event, the time, date and location, and a link for more information.
- Items should be timely in nature, and should be scheduled to occur no later than two weeks from the current date, and no sooner than 24 hours from the current date.
- All featured events must be open to the public. News of closed events will not be published.
- Information about an event should be submitted only once. Repeat announcements about the same event will not be published, unless the editorial staff makes an exception for an item of special significance.
- If a previously announced event has been canceled, a cancellation notice may be published.
The following are the general guidelines followed by editors as they consider photographs for Penn State News. All photos are subject to review and editing. Final decisions for inclusion of a photo rests with the editorial staff of Penn State News.
Use: Photos that appear on Penn State News will be subject to Creative Commons licensing. They will be made available, royalty-free, for noncommercial use by Penn State units, news media outlets and others. (Please see Penn State's photo use policy for media organizations and others, located at the end of this section.)
Photo manipulation: All photos should remain unaltered, unless clearly marked as a photo illustration. Images that have been manipulated should not be published on Penn State News.
Resolution: If at all possible, photos should be at least 150 DPI in resolution. Photos in Penn State's database are available for printing in certain situations, so resolution is critical. Low resolution / "pixelated" photos will not be published.
Caption: Each photo should be published with a complete, sentence-style caption. Captions should identify all people in the photo, regardless of age; the name of the location where the photo was taken; the date on which it was taken; and other pertinent information. Captions should read like something you would expect to see in a news publication. This applies to head-and-shoulders photographs of individuals, as well -- at a minimum, the caption on a head-and-shoulders photograph should contain the individual's full name and title.
Credit: Whenever possible, include a photo credit.
Candid vs. Posed: Photos published on Penn State News should be candid in nature. With the exception of professional head-and-shoulders shots, posed photos should not be used. This includes group photos, photos of two or more people smiling for the camera, posed photos of check or award presentations, etc. Photos of a speaker at a podium are acceptable, but should be avoided if better alternatives exist.
Focus: Photos that are out of focus will not be used.
Penn State photo use policy
The photos owned by Penn State and displayed with news stories at http://news.psu.edu/, at http://www.psu.edu/ and on the University's official Flickr account at http://flickr.com/pennstatelive are free to media representatives for purposes of news coverage, as well as available to individuals for private, not-for-profit use at no charge.
Use of Penn State's images in commercial, non-news-related publications and websites, or any other for-profit use, is prohibited.
Appropriate credits for each image must be used. If a credit is not listed with the image in question, the credit should read "Image courtesy of Penn State." Penn State's Office of Strategic Communications reserves the right to withhold access to images if false representation is suspected or there are questions about intended usage.
Copyright restrictions may apply to non-Penn-State photos displayed on the websites listed above.
All videos submitted for publication on Penn State News and related platforms are subject to editorial review by the Penn State News and Media Relations Editorial Team. Though professional production quality is not required, videos should be of acceptable quality and content should align with the University's strategic goals.
Closed captions: All videos on Penn State News must be closed captioned -- there can be no exceptions.
University Policy AD 25: Videos that fall University Policy AD 25's definition of a "marketing or promotional video" must be reviewed by the Department of University Marketing in Penn State?s Office of Strategic Communications.
Read the entire policy here: http://guru.psu.edu/policies/AD25.html.
Video captions: Each video should be published with a complete, sentence-style caption. Captions should briefly describe the content of the video and provide other pertinent information.