Alumnus authors book of advice for college-bound daughter

With his oldest daughter ready to start college this fall, one Penn State alumnus wanted to provide her with a practical, memorable gift when she went away to school.

So, Steve Sampsell, who also serves as director of College Relations for the College of Communications at Penn State, gave his daughter, who will attend the University of Pittsburgh, a book.

And not just any book. He authored it himself.

He then presented "Men Are Pigs: 93 Things A Dad Wants His Daughter to Know About College" to his daughter Dani in mid-July. It got an immediate positive reaction after she took a photo of the book and uploaded that image to Facebook to spread the word to her friends.

Sampsell's 100-page book, which features 93 pieces of advice because his daughter was born in 1993, touches on topics that range from the relationship with a roommate and how to schedule classes to the importance of going to class and making good decisions.

While Sampsell, who earned his journalism degree at Penn State in 1990, believes he could have come up with all 93 things himself, the book's structure -- with one piece of advice and some commentary or specifics on each page -- was enhanced by contributions from some of his Penn State classmates and friends, as well as recent University graduates who know his daughter.

"It was a personal labor of love, and it became something that can be useful for any young woman headed to college," Sampsell said. "It's not just me preaching. With contributions from other people, it became much stronger. And I learned some things, too."

More about the book and purchasing information may be found at online. Fifty-one percent of all sales for the book are being donated to charity.

The book was illustrated by Alidia Strouse, a high school classmate of Sampsell’s daughter who will be a freshman at Penn State Altoona in the fall. Advanced Color Graphics in State College, Pa., printed the book.

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Last Updated January 09, 2015