Category: Ben Novak Archives

Yule ales add to Advent Spirit (Nittany Valley Press Excerpt)

Today, it is not unusual to enter a bar and find a laundry list of exotic beers on tap or to hear news of a local brew pub or microbrewery opening up. Such was not the case in 1984 (only five years after the legalization of homebrewing) when the editor of the Centre Daily Times ...

An Advisor’s Farewell Letter to Penn State’s TKE Fraternity

The following letter was written to Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) fraternity alumni of Penn State’s Pi Chapter on July 12, 2001. Dear Fraters, After nearly two decades as Advisor to TKE, I must finally hang up my hat. I leave reluctantly, however, for I believe there are few jobs more important than working with today’s ...

The Present Situation of Perpetual War on Students

The following address was delivered by Ben Novak in 1998 during his time as a Penn State Trustee, addressing student riots, the aims of President Spanier’s administration, and student alcohol culture. Throughout Centre County there is a tenseness and a feeling of danger that have never before been experienced in our valleys. Police helicopters were ...

The Student Contributions to Penn State

The following speech was delivered by Ben Novak, Penn State Trustee, to the Penn State Board of Trustees at its November 1989 meeting. Chairman Huck, President Jordan, President Althaus, President Martin, Representative Donaldson, Chairwoman Atwood, Members of the Board: The subject I am addressing today is students. Everybody likes stories. So sit back and relax, ...

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Reflections of a Former Trustee: How the Penn State Board of Trustees Really Functions

View PDF version. Reflections of a Former Trustee How the Penn State Board of Trustees Really Functions By Ben Novak ‘65 I was elected to the Penn State Board of Trustees more than two decades ago, and served on it as an alumni Trustee for twelve years—from 1988 to 200. I came on the Board thinking ...

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The Initiation—A Parable of the Mifflin Streak

A Parable of the Mifflin Streak I have often climbed Mount Nittany and spent afternoons and sometimes all night gazing at the valley and the campus. In my mind I would wander, trying to find a deeper meaning in the commonplace things which are often dismissed as unimportant. One day I was sitting on Mount ...

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Statement of Ben Novak to the Senate Committee on State Government

The following testimony was submissed to the Pennsylvania Senate Committee on State Government on Mar. 3, 2013. A PDF of the complete testimony including appendices can be found here. When originally contacted to appear before the State Government Committee of the Pennsylvania Senate, it was specified that I was being invited because of my historical ...

The End of Ideology

In 1962 Daniel Bell published a book called The End of Ideology, whose major premise was that the age of great men, great beliefs, and great worlds was over. Science had solved all the ancient questions and all that was left was the fine tuning of what we already know to make a society of plenty ...

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Penn State Veterans Day Address

The following speech was delivered by Dr. Ben Novak on the steps of Old Main at The Pennsylvania State University on November 11, 2009 at the invitation of the Penn State Office of Veterans. Colonel Switzer has just spoken to you on the meaning and importance of honoring Veterans Day. It is given to me ...