Alumnus provides gift to create Arthur P. Miller Newsroom Fund

November 09, 2020

A Penn State alumnus whose journalism career took him all over the country, and who served millions of people through his work over the years, has made a gift to the University to ensure student opportunities for generations to come.

Arthur Miller, who earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1947, recently made a $500,000 gift to create, name and endow the Arthur P. Miller Newsroom Fund in the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications.

“I’m convinced that accurate information is essential to a democracy like the United States. And well-trained journalists are its lifeblood,” Miller said. “The medium may change, but the need for citizens in a democracy to obtain and rely on accurate information is vital.

“My strong hope is that the Miller Newsroom Fund will provide Penn State’s future journalists with critical financial help in their news gathering to permit the coverage of events and projects they otherwise might find out of reach. In that way, we will be better training our upcoming communicators and inspiring them to keep democracy’s light burning bright.”

“I’m convinced that accurate information is essential to a democracy like the United States. And well-trained journalists are its lifeblood. The medium may change, but the need for citizens in a democracy to obtain and rely on accurate information is vital."

— Arthur Miller, 1947 journalism

The Miller Newsroom Fund will support collaborative work by students and faculty in covering communities and issues of interest to the commonwealth, with the goal of providing high-quality journalism and non-fiction news gathering to inform and engage citizens. In any given year, it will be used for research projects; equipment and technology to support reporting and publishing; costs associated with project development; state, national and international travel; and costs for recruiting experts and professionals to engage with newsroom initiatives.

Miller had his undergraduate career at Penn State interrupted by World War II (he served as a radar officer on a troop transport in the Pacific Ocean) and completed his degree with support from the G.I. Bill. He served as sports editor of The Daily Collegian as well as chair of the campus chapter of Sigma Delta Chi. He later earned a master’s degree at Columbia University.

Miller crafted a successful and varied career in journalism. He started as a reporter at the McKeesport (Pennsylvania) Daily News, joined the U.S. Navy magazine All Hands as a news editor and then became a staff writer for the International Press Service of the U. S. Information Agency.

He later worked with National Geographic for 14 years, writing chapters in five books and serving as assistant editor for the “Geographic School Bulletin,” whose circulation grew from 30,000 to 500,000 during his career. Miller became a public affairs officer for the National Park Service in 1976 at the time of the nation’s bicentennial and worked in that role until his retirement in 1990.

In retirement, the longtime member of the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., remains active and productive. He and his wife, Marge, who retired from the American Red Cross, formed an editorial partnership that took them 88,000 miles across the country in their motorhome. They produced a series of seven books on natural and cultural history for Stackpole Books, including  three in the Park Ranger Guide series. as well as one on famous Pennsylvanians.

“Art Miller is an exemplar of Bellisario College and Penn State values,” said Dean Marie Hardin. “I am so grateful that our students and community will learn more about him as they benefit from the opportunities this gift will provide to practice great journalism.”

The gift will advance “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” a focused campaign that seeks to elevate Penn State’s position as a leading public university in a world defined by rapid change and global connections. With the support of alumni and friends, “A Greater Penn State” seeks to fulfill the three key imperatives of a 21st-century public university: keeping the doors to higher education open to hard-working students regardless of financial well-being; creating transformative experiences that go beyond the classroom; and impacting the world by serving communities and fueling discovery, innovation and entrepreneurship. To learn more about “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” visit greaterpennstate.psu.edu

Last Updated November 09, 2020