Emily Reddy

News Director

Emily Reddy is the news director at WPSU-FM, the NPR-affiliate public radio station for central and northern Pennsylvania.

In addition to leading the news staff, Reddy creates news stories that air during Morning Edition and All Things Considered and serves as the lead producer of WPSU’s radio series This I Believe, BookMark, and Story Corps. She sometimes fills in as an on-air host.

Reddy’s work has been recognized with a regional Edward R. Murrow Award and multiple awards from the Public Radio News Directors Association, Inc. and the Pennsylvania Associated Press Media Editors.

She also teaches a news writing and reporting class at Penn State.

Reddy originally got hooked on radio as a volunteer reporter and news anchor for WMNF, a community radio station in her hometown of Tampa, Florida. She then went to grad school to pursue this passion professionally.

While at Boston University, Reddy produced segments for the daily news magazine show Here & Now. She also served as a general reporter in Washington D.C. for WAMU and as capitol correspondent for WNPR.

She earned a master’s degree in broadcast journalism from Boston University and a bachelor’s degree in comparative literature from Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida.

She lives in a 150-year-old former one-room schoolhouse with her husband Jonathan and her daughter Zoë.

Contact her at ereddy@psu.edu.

 

Penn State students shared stories of racism they have encountered at the university and faculty talked about what could lead to change, in the second roundtable discussion in the “Toward Racial Equity at Penn State” series Tuesday night. 

 

Nyla Holland, an undergrad student and president of the Black Caucus, talked about racism she’s experienced at Penn State starting freshman year.

 

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, many students are returning to colleges and universities across the U.S. 

In central Pennsylvania, that includes Penn State, Pitt Bradford, and Juniata College. 

Kevin Kinser is a Penn State professor and head of the Department of Education Policy Studies. He’s a senior scientist at Penn State’s Center for the Study of Higher Education and has written several books about higher ed. 

On May 25th, a police officer killed George Floyd while arresting him by kneeling on his neck for nearly nine minutes. Videos of Floyd’s killing have led to weeks of protests across the country and calls for police reform.

Penn State professors Eleanor Brown and Ben Jones recently wrote an OpEd that ran in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and the Philadelphia Inquirer about barriers to police reform and State College’s own police killing of a Black man with schizophrenia, Osaze Osagie. 

Old Main, the administration building, on Penn State's University Park campus
Min Xian / WPSU

In an online town hall on Monday, Penn State President Eric Barron talked with the co-chairs of the university’s new Select Presidential Commission on Racism, Bias and Community Safety about their plans for the commission. 

The university also announced the creation of scholarships to promote equity and diversity. Barron said Penn State will match up to $10 million in donations toward diversity and equity scholarships, and fund memorial scholarships named after George Floyd and Osaze Osagie.

Pre-K-12 schools in Pennsylvania were closed for the last three months of the school year that just ended, due to coronavirus concerns. Gov. Tom Wolf told schools to move to a digital learning model.

We talked about the effects of the shutdown on students with Ed Fuller, an associate professor in the College of Education at Penn State.   

TRANSCRIPT:

Emily Reddy:

Nancy and Sam McKinney
Nancy McKinney

Sam McKinney, from Kane, died from COVID-19 on May 5th. He’s the only person from McKean County so far to die from the virus. His wife, Nancy, also got sick.

WPSU’s Emily Reddy talked with Adam Bundy, Nancy’s son and Sam McKinney’s step-son.  

TRANSCRIPT 

 

Emily Reddy: 

Thank you for talking with us, and I’m so sorry for your loss.  

 

Adam Bundy:  

Thank you. 

 

Governor Tom Wolf said on Friday that he will remove most coronavirus restrictions on 17 mostly western and north-central counties on May 29. The counties moving to the “green” phase are Bradford, Cameron, Clarion, Clearfield, Crawford, Elk, Forest, Jefferson, Lawrence, McKean, Montour, Potter, Snyder, Sullivan, Tioga, Venango and Warren.

 

Wolf said he’d planned to move Centre County to green, but local officials told him they didn’t feel the county was ready yet. 

 

The Republican primary candidates for Pennsylvania’s 25th Senatorial District seat gathered Tuesday in St. Marys to introduce themselves to voters. The winner of the primary in this heavily Republican district will likely replace Joe Scarnati, who is retiring after 20 years. 

Because of coronavirus concerns, there was no audience for the candidate Q&A. The three candidates answered questions spread a few feet apart across a stage at the Shiloh Evangelical Presbyterian Church. 

Dean Lindsey on day 19 of his recovery from COVID-19.
Dean Lindsey

A couple of weeks ago, we talked with State College resident Dean Lindsey, who said he was one of the first people in Centre County to have a confirmed case of COVID-19.

Lindsey is the senior pastor at State College Presbyterian Church.

WPSU checked in with him again to see how he’s doing now. 

TRANSCRIPT:
 

Emily Reddy: Dean Lindsey, thanks for talking with us again.

A map from the Pennsylvania Department of Health showing COVID-19 cases by county as of April 7, 2020.
Pa Department of Health

Confirmed cases of COVID-19 jumped by 11 in Centre County to a total of 55 and Elk and Jefferson County reported their first cases meaning every county in the state now has at least one confirmed case, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health. 

With Tuesday’s DOH updates, the total number of confirmed cases in Pennsylvania is 14,559. That’s an increase of 1,462 from Monday. 

The report also marked the largest single day’s deaths, with 78 more reported since Monday.

The State College borough hung banners about the census before Penn State switched to remote learning for the rest of the spring semester.
Min Xian / WPSU

April 1 is Census Day. That means it’s usually where you live on April 1 that you give as your address when you fill out the census

But coronavirus means Penn State students who would usually be in State College are spread far and wide. Penn State and the U.S. Census are trying to get word out that students should still be counted at their school address.  

Map of PA counties with stay-at-home orders as of March 28, 2020 to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Gov. Tom Wolf extended Pennsylvania’s stay-at-home order to include Centre County on Saturday as the number of cases in the county and state continues to rise. Wolf didn’t give specific reasons why Centre County was added, but the order is part of efforts to help stop the spread of COVID-19. 

The Department of Health announced the number of confirmed cases in Centre County is now at 15. The expansion of this order brings the total number of counties up to 22 and also includes Beaver and Washington Counties. 

 

Dean Lindsey shared a picture on Facebook on March 21, 2020 of the items on his bedside table in quarantine in his State College house.
Dean Lindsey

The number of cases of COVID-19 has been growing across the state and on Friday the Pennsylvania Department of Health reported the first confirmed case in Centre County. By Monday, that number was up to three. WPSU’s Emily Reddy talked with Dean Lindsey, who says he’s one of the first positive cases in Centre County. Lindsey is the Senior Pastor at State College Presbyterian Church in State College. 
 

Emily Reddy: Well, first, how did you catch COVID-19?

The YMCA of Centre County is assembling bags of food to hand out as a part of its Anti-Hunger Program. They're putting together the bags at the Moshannon Valley YMCA gym and distributing them at 14 drive-through locations around the county.
Mel Curtis / YMCA of Centre County

In response to coronavirus concerns, organizations in central Pennsylvania are finding new ways to make sure vulnerable members of the community get fed. In Centre County, both State College Area Meals on Wheels and the YMCA of Centre County are making changes to their normal processes.  

Durrwachter Alumni Conference Center building
User:Ruhrfisch - https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=8138315

Lock Haven University, Juniata College and the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford are all moving to online instruction due to coronavirus concerns. All three are currently in spring break and will temporarily suspend classes next week while they prepare to move classes online starting March 23. 

State High building
Min Xian / WPSU

All schools in the State College Area School District will stay out of session for students until March 20, 2020 because of coronavirus concerns, superintendent Bob O’Donnell informed parents in an email today. 

“At this time, we believe that is the right step to take for the health and safety of our SCASD families, employees, and the community at large — especially to protect our students and employees who are immunosuppressed or at greater risk due to age and other reasons,” O’Donnell said.

Penn State associate professor Dr. Darryl Thomas and professor Dr. Gary King, who wrote "More Rivers to Cross: A Report on the Status of African American Professors at Penn State University."
Min Xian / WPSU

A new report titled "More Rivers to Cross: A Report on the Status of African American Professors at Penn State University" finds that there's a shortage of black faculty at the university and offers some reasons for why that is.

Penn State professor Dr. Gary King, and associate professor Dr. Darryl Thomas prepared the report with the input of other black faculty.

U.S. Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham visited State College to meet with local government and university officials.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

U.S. Census Bureau Director Steven Dillingham visited State College Wednesday to talk about efforts to get people to take part in the count. He is visiting dozens of universities and met with Penn State president Eric Barron before visiting nearby census headquarters to talk with local government officials. 

Dillingham said they are still hiring census takers and that the coronavirus won’t stop canvassing. 

Documentary filmmaker Judith Helfand in the WPSU studios.
Min Xian / WPSU

In 1995, one of the deadliest heat waves in the United States killed 739 people in Chicago. Why was the death count so high? And why were the deaths concentrated in poor, mostly African American neighborhoods? In her new documentary "Cooked: Survival by Zip Code," filmmaker Judith Helfand says it wasn't the heat that killed these people, but generations of institutional racism. 

Project Drawdown Executive Director Jonathan Foley and Director of the Institutes of Energy and the Environment at Penn State Tom Richard.
Penn State

We hear a lot about global warming, but not necessarily about how effective different proposed solutions actually are.

We talked with Tom Richard, the director of the Institutes of Energy and the Environment at Penn State, who helped organize the first ever Project Drawdown conference – which looked at the top 100 actions to reverse climate change.

And we talked with Jonathan Foley, the executive director of Project Drawdown, about the conference and the book it’s based on.  

TRANSCRIPT:

Tom Dann has now been in recovery from opioids for more than four years. He and his wife own and work together at Alleycat Quiltworks in Bellefonte.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Maintaining recovery from opioid use disorder can be incredibly difficult, but long-term recovery is possible. Learn more about what researchers, communities and government agencies are doing to treat opioid use disorder and support individuals in their recovery journey.

Penn State Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice Glenn Sterner speaks to the audience at the Share Your Opioid Story event in State College.
Sam Newhouse / WPSU

WPSU has a new podcast: “Overcoming an Epidemic: Opioids in Pennsylvania," where we explore evidence-based solutions to the opioid epidemic.

Over seven episodes, WPSU reporters Anne Danahy, Min Xian and Emily Reddy look at what researchers, communities and government agencies are doing to try to treat and prevent opioid addiction. Today, you’ll hear two episodes, one on rural opioid care, but first, an episode on stigma.

Author Jamie Ford in Seattle.
Jamie Ford

Author Jamie Ford explores his Chinese heritage and the history of his hometown of Seattle in his novels.

His debut novel, “Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet” tells the story of two young friends during the time of WWII’s Japanese internment camps. It was a New York Times bestseller and won the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature.

His most recent novel, “Love and Other Consolation Prizes,” follows a boy and his two love interests during Seattle’s 1909 and 1962 World Fairs.   

Tricia Stouch fights stigma by talking to groups about her daughter Pamela's addiction. She gave one of these talks recently at Schlow Centre Region Library in State College through the Share Your Opioid Story project.
Sam Newhouse / WPSU

Researchers agree that addiction is a disease. In this episode of Overcoming an Epidemic: Opioids in Pennsylvania, we'll look at how personal stories are being used to fight stigma. And how understanding genetics and the origin of the opioid epidemic might play a role in reducing stigma.

TRANSCRIPT:

Emily Reddy (Narrator) – If there’s one word that comes up over and over again when talking about the opioid crisis – and really any substance abuse issue – it’s STIGMA. Tricia Stouch knows all about it.

Penn State professors Esther Obonyo and Erica Smithwick will be speakers at the Project Drawdown conference Sept. 16-18.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Penn State will host the Project Drawdown conference Sept. 16-18. It’s based on a book that outlines the 100 top actions to reverse climate change.

We talked with two conference presenters about “Drawdown” and the research they’re doing into fighting global warming.

Cumer Family / via AP

One of two mass shootings this weekend has claimed the life of a central Pennsylvania student. Nicholas Cumer, who was killed in the Dayton, Ohio shooting, was a graduate student at St. Francis University in Loretto. He completed his undergraduate degree at St. Francis, and was pursuing a graduate degree in the university’s Master of Cancer Care program

According to a statement from the president of St. Francis, Father Malachi Van Tassell, Cumer was in Dayton doing an internship with the Maple Tree Cancer Alliance.

The YMCA's Travelin' Table bus will be giving out meals and helping residents of Centre and Clearfield Counties access other services.
Carolyn Donaldson / WPSU

A repurposed school bus painted with fruits and vegetables on the side will soon be traveling through Centre and Clearfield Counties to feed kids during the summer.

 

At an open house yesterday, Centre County YMCA President Scott Mitchell said the organization’s Travelin’ Table bus will provide services to outlying areas that can’t get to the Y’s summer feeding sites. 

 

“We’re going to be able to provide food, education, medical screenings and medical support to these families and also help them navigate where to get those services,” Mitchell said. 

Several hundred people showed up for the funeral of Osaze Osagie at State College Alliance Church.
Min Xian / WPSU

Speakers at the funeral of Osaze Osagie talked about his smile, his hugs and his deep faith in God. Several hundred people attended the funeral on Saturday of the 29-year-old black man shot by State College police on March 20. 

Attendees were given a white rose as they entered State College Alliance Church. 

The crowd filled the 500-seat worship space and more than 100 people watched the service through a video feed in the lobby of the church. A band sang worship hymns. 

John Zesiger, superintendent at the Moshannon Vally School District, says he makes drills more realistic by getting rid of the orderly lines and having some students not where they're supposed to be.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Moshannon Vally School District Superintendent John Zesiger said to make intruder drills more realistic they’ve added some complications. 

“We block exits,” Zesiger said. “We have some students who are not where they're supposed to be. So that the staff and the students have to kind of think on their feet and say, ‘Geez, here’s where I'm supposed to go out, but I can't get out that way.’ And they look for the next best option.”

Corl Street Elementary, in State College, is receiving extensive renovations, all done with safety in mind.
Emily Reddy / WPSU

Martha Sherman has two kids at Mount Nittany Elementary School in State College. On a recent morning when she was dropping them off, office staff wouldn’t let her go beyond the front office. She wanted to walk her son Zane to his kindergarten class, but his school, like many others, has a safety policy that says parents can’t do that.

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