Penn State University Reviews in State College, PA | Glassdoor

Penn State University State College Reviews

Updated March 23, 2017
516 reviews

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State College, PA Area

4.2
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Eric J. Barron
74 Ratings

516 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • State College is located in the middle of nowhere (in 16 reviews)

  • Small town; life might be boring (in 33 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. "Comfortable grad student life"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Graduate Teaching Assistant in State College, PA
    Current Employee - Graduate Teaching Assistant in State College, PA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Penn State University part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Insurance cover is excellent - includes dental and vision!

    Cons

    Workload differs from course to course


  2. "Lab Consulting Supervisor"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Lab Consultant in University Park, PA
    Current Employee - Lab Consultant in University Park, PA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Penn State University part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    - flexible hours
    - great pay
    - friendly and family-like environment
    - good communication with management

    Cons

    - delegation of duties: sometimes it's unclear about who's supposed to be doing what

    Advice to Management

    It would be more effective to do training in smaller groups of people and for more specific tasks. Instead of having one big training day for everyone, spread it out over time and do follow ups to make sure everyone knows their duties.


  3. "Administrative Support Assistant"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Administrative Support Assistant in State College, PA
    Current Employee - Administrative Support Assistant in State College, PA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at Penn State University full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Tuition discount, acceptable benefits, decent retirement

    Cons

    Poor HR, poor management, no empowerment or performance incentives, low wages, understaffed

    Advice to Management

    Don't hire School Directors for the sole purpose of money, and find someone who gains student interest and treats employees with respect.


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  5. "Instructor"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    Current Employee - Instructor, College Or University in Penn State University, PA
    Current Employee - Instructor, College Or University in Penn State University, PA

    I have been working at Penn State University full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    benefits and health care provided

    Cons

    Low salary, no tenure track


  6. "Great community to live and work in!"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Research Assistant in State College, PA
    Former Employee - Research Assistant in State College, PA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Penn State University part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    State college is a fantastic and safe place to live, with outdoor activities nearby, nature, a cute downtown, and lots of stores and restaurants.

    Cons

    The airport is very small and makes traveling a bit more difficult / longer / expensive


  7. "Great place to study and work"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    Current Employee - Student Athlete Tutor in State College, PA
    Current Employee - Student Athlete Tutor in State College, PA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Penn State University part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    I feel respected and the pay for grad students is not bad!

    Cons

    Sometimes the bureaucracy can be a bit much


  8. "Undergraduate Researcher"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Undergraduate Research Assistant in State College, PA
    Current Employee - Undergraduate Research Assistant in State College, PA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Penn State University part-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Atmosphere, Food, Opportunities, Continued Learning, Resources

    Cons

    Weather, Large (overlooks the individual), Competitive, Hard to Get Help from IT


  9. "Chemical Engineering Graduate Student"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Graduate Research and Teaching Assistant in University Park, PA
    Former Employee - Graduate Research and Teaching Assistant in University Park, PA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I worked at Penn State University part-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    The faculty are passionate masters of their area of study, but also have realistic expectations for their grad students.

    Most of the undergraduate students are highly motivated and looking to learn.

    If you have difficulty with public speaking (like I did), then teaching engineers is the best practice because they'll let you know when you make a mistake, but will still be very polite and considerate.

    You can expect equally challenging and rewarding experiences.

    Cons

    Long hours, but if you're like me (and most engineering grad students) this could easily be a pro; if you love your work.

    Advice to Management

    I don't know about Penn State as a whole, but the Chemical Engineering Department has great management and exceptional support staff. The needs of the students are proactively met, and I have nothing to complain about or suggest; other than to keep up the amazing work!


  10. "Research Technologist II"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Research Technologist II in University Park, PA
    Current Employee - Research Technologist II in University Park, PA
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Penn State University full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    Often flexible schedule (based on laboratory Primary Investigator).
    Location great for those of us that don't like cities. State College offers much more cultural & recreational opportunities than any other town its size.
    Holidays and vacation generous.

    Cons

    Department to department policies somewhat disjointed, but Penn State is in process of centralizing HR.
    Don't expect to park close to your building.
    You are in an academic research environment so you will receive much lower salary than in private sector research.


  11. "Good place to be"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Teaching Assistant in State College, PA
    Current Employee - Teaching Assistant in State College, PA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Penn State University part-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Helpful & professional staff and faculty.

    Cons

    Weather in winter is awful.



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