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Penn State

Meet Wyatt Massey, Penn State investigative reporter for Spotlight PA State College

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This story was produced by the State College regional bureau of Spotlight PA, an independent, nonpartisan newsroom dedicated to investigative and public-service journalism for Pennsylvania. Sign up for our regional newsletter, Talk of the Town.

I’m Wyatt Massey, and I’m excited to join Spotlight PA in the State College regional bureau as an investigative reporter covering Penn State University.

I grew up on a family farm in rural Wisconsin in a part of America’s Dairyland known as the “driftless” region, where the glaciers didn’t plow through tens of thousands of years ago and flatten out high heels. As a kid, I showed chickens at the county fair and was driving tractors long before I had a driver’s license.

To be honest, I’ve really only worked in two industries in my life: farming and journalism. Moving to Pennsylvania gives me an opportunity to return to my more rural Midwest roots.

After graduating from Marquette University with a degree in English, I have worked a variety of reporting jobs — in Baltimore, New York City, Haiti and most recently in Chattanooga, Tennessee. In the Bible Belt, I worked as a religion reporter for the Chattanooga Times Free Press through the Report for America program. My reporting there uncovered allegations of sexual harassment against a multimillionaire televangelist and questioned the validity of a supposed miracle in northern Georgia.

Now that I’m with Spotlight PA, I’m digging into the issues that are most important to people connected to Penn State and providing a lens of accountability to an influential institution. I’m interested in exploring the ways in which Penn State affects the region, as well as showing how the school operates internally.

It’s important to me to be based in the area I’m reporting on so that I can meet people in person, understand the local culture, and be accountable to the community. Presence like this creates a dialogue between me and readers. Please reach out. I want my work to be driven by the interests you all hold, and I’m happy to meet with readers over a cup of coffee or chat on the phone.

When I’m not working on a story, I enjoy exploring with my dog, McKinley, listening to classic country music and reading. I run ultramarathons in the woods and otherwise just love to be outside. Let me know the cool places to check out in central Pennsylvania.

You can reach me at wmassey@spotlightpa.org or 445-236-0562.

— Wyatt

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