Physical Asset Optimization Workstream

Physical Asset Optimization Workstream Banner featuring pic of Old Main

Since July 2017, a  University  task force has been studying the affordability of a Penn State degree and examining ways to best manage costs and improve quality while striving to fulfill strategic initiatives. In 2018, leaders from the University’s Board of Trustees and Administration hired Huron Consulting Group to identify potential opportunities for optimizing University resources and ensuring strategic priorities are met in the most efficient ways possible.  ​

The Physical Asset Optimization workstream is tasked with developing recommendations around optimizing Penn State’s physical assets and investigating the alignment of various efforts, services, and resources with Penn State’s core teaching, research, and outreach functions. The team has recommended that the University gather and analyze data around potential efficiencies that could be realized through alternative approaches to the University’s  hotels and corporate sponsorships.  Two working groups were created to help implement recommendations:​


Corporate Sponsorships Working Group

Penn State is embarking on an effort to develop a University-wide commercial partnership program that will provide a unified strategy and approach to commercial partnership opportunities and help Penn State optimize the benefits of future collaborative partnerships across the University.

Executive Sponsor: Sara Thorndike, Senior Vice President for Finance and Business/Treasurer
Co-Chairs: Dave Lieb, Senior Associate Vice President for Development & Scott Sidwell, Deputy Director of Athletics - External

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Hotels Working Group

On June 29, 2022, the Penn State Board of Trustees approved for the University to enter into a purchasing agreement and ground lease for The Nittany Lion Inn and Penn Stater with a third-party company, Scholar Hotel Group. This decision follows an extensive process that began in 2021 to examine hotel operations at University Park and whether the hotels align with our core mission of education, research and service. 

Executive Sponsor: Sara Thorndike, Senior Vice President for Finance and Business/Treasurer
Chair: John Papazoglou, Associate Vice President for Auxiliary and Business Services

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