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Penn College News

Anthony Gobbi SGA’s Latest ‘Student of the Month’
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Anthony D. Gobbi

Anthony D. Gobbi, of Haymarket, Virginia, a junior in the building automation technology: heating, ventilation and air conditioning concentration, has been chosen as October’s Student of the Month at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

“He is very good at getting people involved and excited about Penn College,” his nominator noted. “Anthony has a natural talent for leading people and making them feel included in whatever he is doing.”

For Gobbi, “whatever he is doing” crisscrosses a lot of territory: He is a Presidential Student Ambassador, a director of the Blue Crew, social chairman of the Phi Mu Delta fraternity, and a participant in the Penn College Lacrosse Club and intramural athletics.

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Chevron Provides $60,000 for Scholarships to ShaleNET Partners

As part of its $20 million Appalachia Partnership Initiative, Chevron Corp. will provide $60,000 for scholarships to the four colleges in the ShaleNET grant consortium, including Pennsylvania College of Technology.

ShaleNET features participation from Penn College, the grant administrator; Westmoreland County Community College, Youngwood; Navarro College, Corsicana, Texas; and Stark State College, Canton, Ohio. Key employers participating in ShaleNET include Chevron, Shell, Anadarko Petroleum Corp., Chesapeake Energy, XTO and Encana.

Penn College will use $9,000 of $15,000 provided by Chevron to offer scholarships for  Roustabout training that prepares participants for entry-level careers in the natural gas industry. The remaining $6,000 will be designated for scholarship assistance to students enrolled in the college’s mechatronics engineering technology associate-degree major, which integrates electrical, mechanical and computer engineering into one field, offering various options for careers in manufacturing and the natural gas industry.

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Student Club to Host Walkathon to Help Individuals With Disabilities

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Occupational Therapy Assistant Club will host a walkathon on campus Oct. 30.

The walkathon is scheduled 5-9 p.m. and includes laps around the campus mall. Fifteen percent of the walk’s proceeds will be given to initiatives that support individuals with physical disabilities. The remainder will support activities by the Occupational Therapy Assistant Club.

Registration for the walkathon is $15 in advance or $20 on the day of the event. Participants can raise money for their registration – or go above – by asking friends and family to donate toward each lap they complete.

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Students Among ‘Evacuees’ in County Disaster Simulation

Tommie L. Smith (with clipboard), of Montgomery, an accounting student who works with the Lycoming County Emergency Management Agency, gathers biographical information from Ronald D. Parks, of Jersey Shore, an emergency management technology major simulating contamination with radiation particles. Among others involved in the exercise, in which Parks had to be "decontaminated" before joining the general population in the mass-care shelter, is Charles E. O'Brien Jr. (background), a Penn College Police officer.

Tommie L. Smith (with clipboard), of Montgomery, an accounting student who works with the Lycoming County Emergency Management Agency, gathers biographical information from Ronald D. Parks, of Jersey Shore, an emergency management technology major simulating contamination with radiation particles. Among others involved in the exercise, in which Parks had to be “decontaminated” before joining the general population in the mass-care shelter, is Charles E. O’Brien Jr. (background), a Penn College Police officer.

A mock evacuation site is in full swing in the halls of Montoursville Area High School.

A mock evacuation site is in full swing in the halls of Montoursville Area High School.

Kyle G. Stavinski, an emergency medical services major from Elysburg, undergoes radiological "screening" during the Lycoming County drill.

Kyle G. Stavinski, an emergency medical services major from Elysburg, undergoes radiological “screening” during the Lycoming County drill.

Ten Penn College students – eight from the emergency management technology major and two from the paramedic program – attended this week’s disaster exercise hosted by the Lycoming County Emergency Management Agency. The scenario, held at Montoursville Area High School and featuring involvement by the American Red Cross, was based on a nuclear accident at PPL’s Susquehanna Steam Electric Station near Berwick. Students role-played being evacuees from the zone surrounding the nuclear power plant and underwent simulated radiological testing and monitoring.
Photos provided by David E. Bjorkman, instructor of emergency management technology

Flu Shots No Longer Available Through College Health Services

Nursing student Taylor K. Pompili fills a needle with the flu vaccine.

Nursing student Taylor K. Pompili fills a needle with the flu vaccine.

Nursing student Abby C. Busch checks the temperature of freshman nursing student Ryan D. Zimmerman prior to administering his vaccine.

Nursing student Abby C. Busch checks the temperature of freshman nursing student Ryan D. Zimmerman prior to administering his vaccine.

Nursing student Tricia Zapata administers a flu shot in the college’s Health Services facility.

Nursing student Tricia Zapata administers a flu shot in the college’s Health Services facility.

Students in Penn College’s Fundamentals of Nursing course collaborated with College Health Services to provide flu vaccine to more than 100 members of the college community on Oct. 2. The project was a collaborative effort with Carl L. Shaner, director of college health services; Terri A. Stone, instructor of nursing; Tushanna M. Habalar, learning laboratory coordinator for nursing education; and Jessica L. Bower, simulation laboratory coordinator for nursing education. “A special thanks to all Health Services staff and nursing faculty who participated to make it a successful learning experience for students,” Stone said. Additional nursing faculty overseeing students included Christine M. Shimp, Pamela W. Baker and Gina L. Bross, all instructors of nursing, and Pamela J. Jablonski, part-time instructor of practical nursing. College Health Services has sold out of this season’s flu vaccine and urges those in need to contact their primary-care physicians and/or local pharmacies.

Alumnus Builds Purposeful Life on Brick-and-Mortar Foundation

Jeff Erdly takes his audience on a journey both personal and professional, from a long line of Pennsylvania farmers to his leadership of a $10 million, 60-employee business.

Jeff Erdly takes his audience on a journey both personal and professional, from a long line of Pennsylvania farmers to his leadership of a $10 million, 60-employee business.

An award-winning alumnus who established a memorial scholarship at Penn College, Erdly urges students to "make the world a better place."

An award-winning alumnus who established a memorial scholarship at Penn College, Erdly urges students to “make the world a better place.”

"I love bricks" was Erdly's obvious confession, as he employed a familiar prop to discuss "stretchers," "headers," "sliders" and other ways to orient a course of masonry work.

“I love bricks” was Erdly’s obvious confession, as he employed a familiar prop to discuss “stretchers,” “headers,” “sliders” and other ways to orient a course of masonry work.

The guest speaker talks with Marc E. Bridgens, dean of construction and design technologies (who introduced the afternoon lecture), and Debra M. Miller, the college's director of corporate relations.

The guest speaker talks with Marc E. Bridgens, dean of construction and design technologies (who introduced the afternoon lecture), and Debra M. Miller, the college’s director of corporate relations.

Erdly's philosophy seamlessly melds his jovial nature with his vocational passion: "Find something you love to do and care about it. You've got to work –  you might as well enjoy it!"

Erdly’s philosophy seamlessly melds his jovial nature with his vocational passion: “Find something you love to do and care about it. You’ve got to work – you might as well enjoy it!”

Standing in Penn College’s 100-year-old Klump Academic Center, which he characterized Thursday as “the ultimate repurposed building,” a 1972 alumnus counseled a new generation on how to construct a meaningful life in a mercurial profession. Jeff Erdly, co-founder and CEO of  Masonry Preservation Services, presented “Just Another Brick in the Wall? A Building Science Education – Its Value to Society, and Roadmap to Building Your Career.” During an hour that interwove his expertise in structural deterioration and his insights on workforce credibility, Erdly balanced the longevity of some of the world’s most recognizable structures – from the Pantheon of ancient Rome to the state Capitol in Harrisburg to Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater – with the ever-shifting world that the college’s graduates will inhabit. “This industry changes so fast, at a pace that has never been seen before,” the 2004 Distinguished Alumnus Award-winner told students. “All you should know at the end of school is what you don’t know.” To punctuate his point, Erdly held up a slide rule and evoked the words of a long-ago WACC instructor who not-so-presciently told him, “the computer will never replace a draftsman.” Still, he advised construction majors to “respect the craft,” reflecting the culture that he strives to honor at his business. He also urged students to “appreciate the moment that you’re in” … and not to be “Wikipedia-smart,” but to read everything and anything along their road to lifelong learning. Concluding his talk with a Q&A and a photo of his grandchildren, Erdly saved for last what might be his most crucial nugget: “Have nothing in your life that you don’t find to be useful or beautiful.” Read more about Erdly and his illustrious career in the Spring 2014 issue of One College Avenue.

Prospective Employers Schedule Information Sessions

Employers on campus

Employers on campus

Two employers will hold informational meetings Tuesday for Penn College students and alumni in the School of Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies. Representatives of Lincoln Electric will be on hand at 3:30 p.m. in Room A106 of the Avco-Lycoming Metal Trades Center; Ring Container Technologies will be in Room E256 of the Breuder Advanced Technology and Health Sciences Center. Follow-up interviews by both companies will be scheduled for Wednesday in Room 202 of the Bush Campus Center. For details, including available positions and academic areas of interest, consult the employers’ fliers: Employer Information Sessions

Student-Constructed ‘Bridges’ Open to Inspection

'Bridging the Gap' entries on display in LEC

‘Bridging the Gap’ entries on display in LEC

The 23rd annual “Bridging the Gap” competition, featuring bridges constructed by architectural technology students solely from paper and glue, is under way in the Hager Lifelong Education Center. The entries can be seen in the LEC’s second-floor hallway; members of the Penn College community are encouraged to vote for their favorite and guess which will prove to be the strongest. The bridges will be on display until the destructive-testing portion of the contest, which will begin at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday in Room B2014 of the LEC.
Photo by Dorothy J. Gerring, associate professor of architectural technology

Funeral Services to Be Held Friday for Retired Faculty Member

Services will be held in Wisconsin on Friday for Joseph P. Miglio, a former faculty member who died Saturday, Oct. 18, at the age of 90. Miglio taught at Penn College from August 1990 to March 2002, retiring as an associate professor of machine tool technology. Arrangements are being handled by Cress’ in Stoughton, Wisconsin, which posted a full obituary to its website.

Plastics Students, Faculty Mentor Attend Industry Conference

On hand for presentation of SPE's Carrie Fox Solin Memorial Scholarship awards are (from left) John R. Bartolomucci, assistant professor of plastics and polymer engineering technology at Penn College; scholarship recipients Bryan T. Robinson, of Penn College, and Samuel Moore, of Pittsburg (Kansas) State University; and Paul M. Herring, an associate professor of plastics engineering technology at Pitt State.

On hand for presentation of SPE’s Carrie Fox Solin Memorial Scholarship awards are (from left) John R. Bartolomucci, assistant professor of plastics and polymer engineering technology at Penn College; scholarship recipients Bryan T. Robinson, of Penn College, and Samuel Moore, of Pittsburg (Kansas) State University; and Paul M. Herring, an associate professor of plastics engineering technology at Pitt State.

Robinson and Julia I. Gilchrist (joined at the conference by classmate Thomas J. Ryder, who is not pictured) represented Penn College at a display table.

Robinson and Julia I. Gilchrist (joined at the conference by classmate Thomas J. Ryder, who is not pictured) represented Penn College at a display table.

Three Penn College students and a faculty member, including a Society of Plastics Engineers national scholarship recipient, attended the recent 30th annual SPE Blow Molding Division Conference in Chicago. Thomas J. Ryder, of Muncy; Julia I. Gilchrist, of Hanover; and Bryan T. Robinson, of Gilbertsville – all plastics and polymer engineering technology majors – helped staff a tabletop display and represented the college throughout the exhibits area, conference sessions, and among students attending from other colleges and universities. During the event, Robinson received the second half of his two-year $6,000 Carrie Fox Solin Memorial Scholarship from the organization. The group was accompanied by John R. Bartolomucci, assistant professor of plastics and polymer engineering technology, who was one of five panelists in a “Training Resources for Blow Molders” discussion. Moderated by Geoff Ward, of Argi Industrial Plastics, the panel also included Penn State Erie, the Behrend College; Ferris State; Calhoun Community College and Paulson Training Programs.
Photos provided

Award-Winning Alumnus to Speak Thursday in ACC

Jeff Erdly

Jeff Erdly

Members of the campus community – particularly students in construction-related majors – are encouraged to attend a lecture by Jeff Erdly, a 1972 graduate of Williamsport Area Community College and a world-renowned authority on building and masonry preservation, who will speak at 3:30 p.m. Thursday in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium. Sponsored by the School of Construction & Design Technologies and the Penn College Alumni Relations Office, Erdly will present “Just Another Brick in the Wall? A Building Science Education – Its Value to Society, and Roadmap to Building Your Career.” The chief executive officer and co-founder of Masonry Preservation Services Inc., Erdly was profiled in the Spring 2014 issue of One College Avenue. He was also selected as the college’s Distinguished Alumnus in 2004 in recognition of his personal and professional accomplishments, his contributions toward the college (including his establishment of a scholarship in memory of his parents), and the high regard in which he is held in the community.

Penn College Information Technology Students Excel at ‘Hackathon’

Penn College IT majors had a strong showing at the recent Altamira Hackathon in Fairfax, Virginia. College participants were (front row, from left) Evelyn E. Hill, of Muncy; Madelyn M. Lanoue, of Dallastown; David M. Mossop, of Newark, Delaware; Zachary L. Lundberg, of Warren; Donald E. McCoy, of Watsontown (2014 graduate); and Brian S. Stringer, of McVeytown. Back row, from left: Derek E. Teay, of Northampton; Tucker J. Harner, of Leesport; Drew Pacell, of Ottsville; Jeremy W. Rennicks, of Williamsport; Jerome T. Czachor, of Dickson City; and Adam T. Check, of Great Falls, Virginia. (Photo by Sandra Gorka, associate professor of computer information technology)

Information technology majors from Pennsylvania College of Technology proved their prowess at a recent cybersecurity competition. A five-member Penn College contingent finished second at the Altamira Hackathon in Fairfax, Virginia.

Conducted at George Mason University, the competition required participants to test their skills around the Atari game Scram. Team members controlled various aspects of a nuclear reactor while protecting their computer network and attacking the computing resources of other teams.

“Events such as the Altamira Hackathon give students an opportunity to exercise their skills in a competitive environment,” said Sandra Gorka, associate professor of computer information technology, who accompanied the students with Jacob R. Miller, associate professor of computer information technology. “We are very impressed with the performance of our second-place team and all the Penn College students who participated. They did an outstanding job representing the college.”

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Geology, Environmental Science Faculty Member Earns Doctorate

Veronica C. Ciavarella

Veronica C. Ciavarella, instructor of geology and environmental science at Pennsylvania College of Technology, recently received her doctorate of education in adult education from Penn State.

Focused on distance education and, specifically, the use of labs in online geology courses, Ciavarella defended her dissertation, “Exploratory Qualitative Case Study of Lab-Type Activity Interactions in an Online Geoscience Course.”

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Spiffed-Up ‘Millionaire’ Moves Ever Closer to Stepping Out

From left, WASD graphic-design students Zach Miller and Chase Campbell assist their CTE instructor, Timothy A. Miller,  in applying a vinyl decal ...

From left, WASD graphic-design students Zach Miller and Chase Campbell assist their CTE instructor, Timothy A. Miller, in applying a vinyl decal …

... and working out the air bubbles for a smooth, professional look.

… and working out the air bubbles for a smooth, professional look.

Kevin P. Sullivan (left), lab coordinator for programs in Penn College's School of Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications, assists Miller on a side-door application. The two men were also among those involved in the extensive (and impressive) vinyl wrap of a FedEx cargo plane donated to the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies.

Kevin P. Sullivan (left), lab coordinator for programs in Penn College’s School of Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications, assists Miller on a side-door application. The two men were also among those involved in the extensive (and impressive) vinyl wrap of a FedEx cargo plane donated to the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies.

Zach Miller applies a placard acknowledging the WASD Education Foundation's funding of the project.

Zach Miller applies a placard acknowledging the WASD Education Foundation’s funding of the project.

Celebrating a Millionaire moment

Celebrating a Millionaire moment

A collaborative project between Penn College students and their Williamsport Area High School counterparts entered its final phase Monday morning, as a 1979 Lincoln Continental Mark V was adorned with the Millionaire logo to accent its new finish in cherry-and-white school colors. The car was donated to the high school’s automotive department by a Williamsport Area School District employee last year, and, with financial support from the WASD Education Foundation, has been given new life as a showpiece for parades, Homecoming and other events. Collision repair students from the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies worked on the car for nearly a year, painstakingly painting and clear-coating the luxury coupe. Vinyl decals of the high school’s emblematic top hat, gloves and cane were fabricated in the college’s graphic design lab and affixed by faculty and students from the high school’s Career and Technical Education program. Penn College students from Shaun D. Hack’s Introduction to Non-Structural Collision Repair Applications class visited from an adjacent lab to watch the application. After some final touch-up of the vehicle’s trim in College Avenue Labs, the once-blue car will be returned to the district, where automotive students will be in charge of maintaining the “Millionaire-mobile.”

Gernert Again Named Conference ‘Player of the Week’

Courtney Gernert

Courtney Gernert

Senior Courtney Gernert, of Palmyra, has been named the North Eastern Athletic Conference Women’s Volleyball Player of the Week for the period ending Oct. 19.  The graphic design major had a milestone week for the Wildcats, compiling 70 kills, 86 digs and 15 service aces across five matches, while reaching 1,000 kills and 1,000 digs for her career.  She had a kills/digs double-double in all five matches on the week, including 20 kills and 21 digs in a 3-2 win over Cazenovia College.  She also reached both career milestones in style: She tallied her 1,000th dig against University of Valley Forge during Senior Night while smacking her 1,000th kill on match point against Cazenovia. Gernert is now fifth in the NEAC in digs (367), digs per set (4.03) and points per set (3.6); sixth in both kills (2.76) and kills per set (3.03); and seventh in points (331).  This is Gernert’s second NEAC Player of the Week selection on the year. She and the Lady Wildcats close out the season Wednesday with a 7 p.m. match at Susquehanna University.

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