Emily Reddy

News Director

Emily Reddy is the news director at WPSU-FM. You can hear her feature stories during Morning Edition and All Things Considered. Emily also serves as the lead producer of WPSU’s radio series This I Believe, BookMark, and StoryCorps. She sometimes fills in as an on-air host.

Her radio work has been recognized with multiple awards from the Public Radio News Directors Association, Inc. (PRNDI) and the Pennsylvania Associated Press Broadcasters Association.

Before coming to WPSU, Emily anchored the evening news and reported for WMNF in Tampa, Florida. She also served as a general reporter in Washington D.C. for WAMU and as capitol correspondent for WNPR.

While in graduate school, Emily produced segments for the daily news magazine Here & Now out of WBUR in Boston. She earned her B.A. in comparative literature from Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida and her M.S. in broadcast journalism from Boston University.

Ways to Connect

Niki Morris
Emily Reddy / WPSU

New online videos for the ALS ice bucket challenge are drying up. But the viral challenge raised more than 110 million dollars for the neurodegenerative disease, which is also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. It's also raised hope for Niki Morris, who has ALS.

A new poll from Quinnipiac University of Pennsylvania's likely voters finds Governor Corbett is 24 points behind his Democratic challenger, Tom Wolf.

Fifty-nine percent of respondents said they would vote for the York County businessman, with 35 percent supporting Corbett. The figures include people leaning toward voting for either candidate.

Fifteen percent of respondents said they could change their minds.

Penn State's Beaver Stadium
Emily Reddy / WPSU

The Penn State football team is now bowl game eligible. The NCAA announced a lift on Penn State’s postseason ban Monday, effective immediately. The news directly followed the release of former Senator and independent monitor George Mitchell’s second annual report on the school’s compliance with sanctions levied after the Sandusky scandal. Mitchell’s review of Penn State’s progress was glowing—he applauded the university’s institution of a new compliance system, which encourages transparency and communication with Penn State leadership.

 

Grange Fair tents
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Let's talk tenting. The Centre County Grange Encampment and Fair in Centre Hall, Pennsylvania just ended. It all started with a picnic back in 1874. And now year after year, campers return - some going back generations.

In a shady, quieter part of the fairgrounds is something you won't see at other fairs - row after row of green canvas tents about the size of a one-car garage. The encampment dates back to the Grange gatherings that started in the area in 1874.

I just made an up close and personal visit to Pennsylvania’s coal country. I did it through reading Tawni O’Dell’s brand new novel, One of Us.

The book is set in Lost Creek, Pennsylvania, a coal mining company town. I assumed the town was fictional, so I was surprised to Google it and find it right there on a Pennsylvania map next to Frackville and Shenandoah and with it - you guessed it – Lost Creek running through the middle.

Sneezy the Squirrel wearing a WPSU ball cap.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

At Penn State, one student's collection of photos of squirrels wearing costumes has gotten four-times as many likes on Facebook as the school's mascot.

That student is Mary Krupa. You can often find Krupa beneath a massive elm tree that flanks Penn State's administrative building, Old Main, and watching for her favorite squirrel.

“ See how she walks?,” asks Krupa. “She just kinds of trots over here. That one's Sneezy. Hi, Buddy.”

As the brown squirrel comes closer, Krupa reaches into a paper bag to get Sneezy a peanut.

On today's Take Note, we'll talk with bird researcher and Pulitzer Prize nominated author Scott Weidensaul. The eastern Pennsylvania based writer was in town for BookFestPA and talked with WPSU’s Emily Reddy before his visit about his best-known book, Living on the Wind: Across the Hemisphere with Migratory Birds. Then WPSU's Patty Satalia will interview ClearWater Conservancy's Katie Ombalski and landowner Sally Rothwell about a stream restoration project on the Rothwell Farm in Centre County. Ombalski says the improvements impact water quality all the way to the Chesapeake Bay.

On August 4-7, State College will host the 18th National Autism Conference. Today on Take Note we talk with Dr. Daniel Notterman about the current state of autism research. Dr. Notterman has just stepped down from the position of vice dean for research and graduate studies -- and professor of pediatrics and biochemistry -- at Penn State College of Medicine. He’s going to Princeton University, where he’ll continue his research into the causes of autism. WPSU’s Emily Reddy talked with Dr. Notterman about where we are in our understanding of autism.

Scott Weidensaul with Owl
Bill Urich

BookFest will take place on Saturday as a part of the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts in State College. WPSU’s Emily Reddy talked with one of this year’s featured authors, Scott Weidensaul, about his best-known book, Living on the Wind: Across the Hemisphere with Migratory Birds. It was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in non-fiction writing.

Check out the BookFestPA lineup on their website.

Bonnie Kline Smeltzer
Emily Reddy / WPSU

The Smeltzer family lives in a tree-lined subdivision in Boalsburg, just outside of State College. Their living room has a huge picture window with a view of a little park and beyond that the Tussey Mountain ski slope.

We’ve been hearing a lot about the Common Core recently. Oklahoma and South Carolina withdrew from the national education standards last week. Indiana pulled out in March. State College education expert and former Department of Education consultant Henry Brzycki tells us why he thinks the Common Core and other high stakes testing is not the best answer for educating our kids.

The Fault in Our Stars and Emily Reddy
Kelly Tunney / WPSU

I just finished reading the young adult novel The Fault in Our Stars. This puts me only a couple of years behind hundreds of thousands of teenaged girls and boys. Since the book was released in 2012, it has spent 132 weeks on the New York Times Young Adult bestseller list. 132 weeks! It’s so popular, it’s pulled 3 of John Green’s older novels onto the list along with it. Tomorrow it will be released in movie form. If you go, look for familiar sights. The movie was filmed in Pittsburgh.

High School referendum Yes sign
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Here are elections results for races of interest in the WPSU listening area according to unofficial results…

The State College High School Funding referendum has passed. Voters in the State College school district voted by nearly a 3 to 1 margin to fund $85 million worth of renovations and new building to the local high school.

Democrat Tom Wolf has won the Democratic primary for Governor.

Michael Stack came out on top in a crowded race for Democratic Lt. Governor.

Ooze from floor
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Tuesday’s election will have more than just primary candidates on the ballot. Voters in the State College school district will decide whether to approve an 85 million dollar referendum to pay for renovations and additions to State College Area High School. Only one school district in Pennsylvania has managed to pass a referendum like this one since Act 1 passed in 2006, capping yearly school tax increases.

A group of teachers at the high school, including English teachers Allison Becker and Jennifer Rand, are pushing for a “yes” vote.

Erickson
Penn State

Penn Staters For Responsible Stewardship (PS4RS) endorsed candidates Alice Pope, Al Lord, and Bob Jubelirer in this year’s election. The three beat out 28 other candidates for the open seats on the Penn State Board of Trustees. More than 29-thousand Penn State alumni voted in the election.

The meeting also included accolades for outgoing president Rodney Erickson. Trustees voted to name the Penn State University Park food sciences building and an undergraduate research grant after Erickson.  They also awarded him the Penn State Medal, which was presented by chairman Keith Masser.

Today we talk with two of the four Democratic candidates for Pennsylvania governor. Tom Wolf is a York businessman and the current front runner in the race. He's put $10 million of his own money into his campaign so far and he's flooded the television airwaves with ads. Katie McGinty is a former environmental advisor to President Clinton and former secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Ed Rendell.

StoryCorps
Emily Reddy / WPSU

WPSU is traveling to towns across central and northern Pennsylvania to collect oral history recordings. In October, we stopped at the Old Gregg School in the Penns Valley town of Spring Mills. Robert Brown interviewed his son Jimmy, who loves history and has won a number of awards for his history presentations.

StoryCorps pair
Emily Reddy

WPSU is traveling to towns across central and northern Pennsylvania to collect oral history recordings. In October, we stopped at the Old Gregg School in the Penns Valley town of Spring Mills. Curt Bierly and his son Stan talk about the family business, Stanley C. Bierly, in Millheim.

StoryCorps pair
Emily Reddy

WPSU is traveling to towns across central and northern Pennsylvania to collect oral history recordings. In October, we stopped at the Old Gregg School in the Penns Valley town of Spring Mills. Longtime friends Pauline Zerby and Jerelene Reish talk about growing up in Millheim.

Universities are testing the boundaries of online education with MOOCs, or Massively Open Online Courses. The courses are free and open to anyone and everyone who wants to take part. WPSU’s Emily Reddy takes a look at a Penn State MOOC that’s just wrapping up, about a year after the university first decided to try out this new educational format.

Looking for an older WPSU's Story Corps interview? Click here to find them.

John Gaudlip in front of field with sprinklers.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

    

This week WPSU is taking a look at water issues in central Pennsylvania. Today, WPSU’s Emily Reddy explores the massive task of supplying and cleaning the water used by students, faculty, staff and visitors at Penn State University. 

A long, cold winter – like the one that is mercifully coming to a close – can be more than just an emotional drain. It can be a drain on home finances and the environment. As her home-heating bills piled up, WPSU’s Emily Reddy went in search of solutions for her energy woes. She found a program gearing up at Penn State to help homeowners just like her.

Former FBI director Louis Freeh
AP Photo / Matt Rourke

The long-awaited Freeh Report is unambiguous. It assigns blame for mishandling of the Jerry Sandusky scandal to four men – Penn State President Graham Spanier, Senior Vice-President Gary Schultz, Athletic Director Tim Curley and Head Football Coach Joe Paterno.

Members of the Penn State board of trustees received the report they commissioned at the same time as everyone else yesterday. An hour later, former FBI head Louis Freeh – who led the investigation – spoke about the findings in the report.

Emily Reddy / WPSU

Just over three months ago residents of a mobile home park in Central Pennsylvania were told they had to leave. The Riverdale Mobile Home Park, near Jersey Shore, had been sold. And the new owners planned to put in a water withdrawal facility to service nearby fracking activities. WPSU’s Emily Reddy went to the mobile home park in its final days.

crowd at Bryce Jordan Center
Emily Reddy / WPSU

In State College on Thursday, some 12,000 people turned out for the memorial of long-time Penn State football coach Joe Paterno. Mourners trekked in through the rain to fill Bryce Jordan Center for the memorial.

Paterno statue with crowd
Emily Reddy / WPSU

A steady stream of mourners visited the bronze Joe Paterno statue outside Beaver Stadium yesterday. They went to pay homage to the legendary Penn State football coach.

Most visitors stood and contemplated the statue of Joe Paterno in silence. A few at a time, some walked up to the statue and added candles, flowers, hand-written notes, and Penn State gear to the growing pool of offerings at his feet. By mid-afternoon, someone had draped an American flag over Paterno’s upraised arm. A rosary hung from his other hand. And he wore a blue and white striped Penn State scarf.

Daryl Gregory lives in State College and writes fantasy and science fiction novels.  His new book is a collection of short stories called "Unpossible and Other Stories."

Tim Ziegler next to construction sign on dirt road.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Marcellus shale drilling across Pennsylvania has expanded tremendously in the last couple of years. To extract the natural gas, companies drill straight down about 5,000 feet then shoot highly-pressured water mixed with chemicals and sand vertically through the shale to release the gas. It’s called hydrofracturing, or “fracking.” The whole process requires heavy equipment and millions of gallons of water to be trucked in over roads built to carry passenger cars.

Penn State professor Alex Hristov
Emily Reddy / WPSU

It’s feeding time at an experimental dairy barn not far from Beaver stadium. A big square machine on wheels spits a pile of hay in front of each cow on one side of the barn, and lab assistant Chan Hee Lee pours a bucket of dried green leaf bits on top.

As the feeding machine finishes up and rolls out of the barn, Alex Hristov says they tried a lot of things before they found oregano reduced cows’ methane output.

“We started with essential oils,” Hristov said. “Lavender, mint. Citrus, onion, anything, you name it.

So why is Hristov focused on cutting methane?

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