Penn State receives award that includes work from Boswell native



Penn State University has been selected by the Engagement Scholarship Consortium (ESC) to receive the Ryan, Moser, Reilly Excellence in Community Engagement Institutional Leadership Award 2021.

Penn State received the award for “Exemplary Leadership in Advancing the Field of Community Scholarship.” Penn State Provost Nick Jones and Penn State Outreach Vice President and Boswell native Tracey Huston accepted the award on behalf of the university at the ESC 2021 international conference with more than 800 representatives from higher education institutions in 41 states and seven countries.

“We are deeply grateful that ESC has recognized Penn State for its leadership and commitment to community-driven scholarships. Our campuses, colleges, interdisciplinary institutes and administrative units have all contributed to this important mission, ”said Huston. “This national award is a great recognition of our faculty, students, staff and community partners who have dedicated themselves to this academic work for many years.

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“This award is a great recognition for our faculty members who are dedicated to classroom teaching and learning, laboratory research and discovery, and community engagement and service. the staff are contributing to this strategic initiative – it’s so great that this dedicated and deliberate effort has been recognized nationally with this distinguished honor. ”

Growing up in Somerset County

Huston is the daughter of Joe and Judy DeBlase, Boswell, and a graduate of North Star High School. His brother Joey and his wife Betsy and their sons reside in Somerset County. Huston resides in Boalsburg, with her husband Bill.

Huston has over 35 years of experience in higher education with over two and a half decades serving at Penn State.

“I had the honor of growing up in Somerset County with access to excellent teachers from the North Star School District and the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of extracurricular learning,” Huston said in a E-mail. “I understand the importance for Penn State students to have access to community outreach programs outside of the classroom, and we strive to create and support these student engagement experiences with our community partners. “

Prior to her appointment as Vice President of Outreach, Huston was Associate Vice President of Marketing and Registration Services for Outreach and Online Education. She was also Executive Director of Outreach Marketing and Communications and Director of Outreach Communications.

Before Huston began working at Penn State in 1994, she was assistant director of public relations and director of sports information at Juniata College.

Provides resources

By offering content and resources, Penn State Outreach helps connect businesses, communities, and learners in a variety of delivery formats – reaching all 67 counties. Initiatives include WPSU-FM, WPSU-TV, WPSU Digital (NPR, PBS affiliates), professional and community education and engagement, conferences and institutes (educational conferences), the Institute of Justice and Security ( Sheriff and Deputy Constable Training), Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (programs for adults 50+), Shaver’s Creek Environmental Center, Community Engagement, K-12 Engagement (K-12 school programs), Penn State Centers in Philadelphia (primarily focused on social justice and health) and Pittsburgh (primarily focused on sustainability), The Readiness Institute (which helps high school students in Pittsburgh prepare for their future), the Penn State Arboretum and the Nittany AI Alliance (contests / internships / conferences / seed funding for Artificial Intelligence students).

“Addressing all the major challenges of our global society – from the health of individuals and populations to climate change and sustainability, among others – requires a dedicated scholarship,” said Nick Jones. “Community engagement with this scholarship represents a vital bridge between researchers and practitioners at Penn State and the people who will benefit from the results of these activities. To be recognized by this consortium for its leadership in advancing the field of community scholarship is a tremendous honor, and we are grateful for it.

Two former executives from Penn State Outreach and the University – Jim Ryan, vice president emeritus, and Craig Weidemann, vice president and vice president emeritus – joined Jones and Huston to receive the award. The “Ryan, Moser, Reilly Excellence in Community Engagement Institutional Leadership Award” is named, in part, for Jim Ryan who was the visionary Penn State leader who established the conference at Penn State in October 1998, “Best Practices in Outreach and Public Service. ”Then, in 2000, Ryan invited Bobby Moser from Ohio State and Kevin Reilly from Wisconsin-Extension to partner with a second national outreach conference which became the Engagement Scholarship Consortium with over 800 attendees. attending this year’s virtual event from 41 states, Washington, DC and seven countries.

The Institutional Prize is awarded annually by the Engagement Scholarship Consortium – a 501 (c) (3) non-profit educational organization made up of member higher education institutions, a mix of state public and private institutions .

“This ESC honor is particularly important to our university and we are grateful for the recognition,” said Huston. “It’s also very special to me personally, as I attended the initial planning meeting for the very first national conference held at Penn State in 1998 and currently sit on the Board of Directors of the Engagement Scholarship Consortium.

“Penn State Outreach, Penn State Extension, and Invent Penn State Launch Boxes and Innovation Hubs (help entrepreneurs launch business ideas) support our communities across the Commonwealth. I can say with confidence that every college, campus, and interdisciplinary institutes at Penn State serves the Commonwealth by translating evidence-based research to a large and diverse audience and engaging learners in problem solving and learning. seize opportunities. “



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