Faculty & Staff

Lori Shontz

Lori Shontz


309B Allen Hall

Lori Shontz specializes in the teaching of core writing and reporting skills. She co-directs Writing Central, the SOJC’s peer writing support program, and is a leader nationally in the teaching of engaged journalism.

She also uses her background as a sports journalist to teach a class in advanced sports beat reporting in which students cover all of the track and field meets at Hayward Field. Her students’ work has been published in more than 30 professional publications since 2015.

Shontz came to academia after more than two decades as a writer and editor specializing in sports, women’s issues, and higher education. She has reported from Kenya, Cuba, 10 Final Fours (women’s and men’s), and four Olympic Games. She has also organized coverage of events including the Olympics and the BCS title game. She worked at The Miami Herald; the St. Louis Post-Dispatch; her hometown Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; The Times Leader in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania; and the Progress-Index in Petersburg, Virginia. And at The Penn Stater alumni magazine, she was part of a team that received awards for its in-depth and unflinching coverage of the Jerry Sandusky scandal.

Shontz graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Penn State in 1991 with a BA in English writing and a minor in sports history, and she wrote her senior honors thesis on the development of women’s varsity sport. She completed her MEd in 2013 in adult education at Penn State, where she researched organizational change and professional development in journalism.

She is the faculty adviser for student chapters of the Society for Professional Journalists and the Association for Women in Sports Media.

Learn more on her website.


  • MEd, Adult Education, Pennsylvania State University, 2013
  • BA, English, Pennsylvania State University, 1991

Areas of Expertise

  • Sports journalism
  • History of women’s sport/Title IX
  • Olympic history
  • News writing and reporting
  • Journalism education
  • Higher education journalism
  • Magazine journalism

Recent Citations, Publications, and Professional Work

“The Long Game,” historical piece about the 50th anniversary of varsity sports for women at Penn State, The Penn Stater alumni magazine, November/December 2014

“Data Driven,” profile of incoming Penn State president Eric Barron, The Penn Stater alumni magazine, May/June 2014

“Inside Cuba,” travel story from a people-to-people cultural exchange, The Penn Stater alumni magazine, July/August 2013

“The Visitors,” historical piece about the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, The Penn Stater alumni magazine, May/June 2013


  • Reporting I
  • Gateway to Media I and II
  • Sports Media Workshop
  • Legalize It (issue coverage of marijuana legalization)
  • Sports Journalism