News about Business & Hospitality

Cooking Low and Slow in Billtown

George E. Logue III, '10, has found his home as chef/owner of Acme Barbecue & Catering Co. in downtown Williamsport.

From the Spring 2016 One College Avenue magazine: A calm demeanor and appreciation for life are part of the recipe at a culinary arts alumnus’s popular restaurant in downtown Williamsport. Bonus: Get the recipe for Acme Barbecue’s “Baked Pit Beans.” Read “Cooking Low and Slow in Billtown.”

Historic Number of Penn College Students Headed to Nationals

SkillsUSA Pennsylvania

Seventeen first-place winners from Pennsylvania College of Technology have advanced to the 52nd annual National SkillsUSA Conference, to be held from June 20-24 in Louisville, Kentucky.

Three other students finished in the top four places in their respective categories during the SkillsUSA Pennsylvania Leadership and Skills Conference held earlier this month in Hershey.

“I feel great about the students’ performance at the state competition. It goes to show how well-prepared the students are from their respective fields and how great our instructors are here at the college,” said James N. Colton II, assistant professor of welding and the college’s SkillsUSA adviser. “This is, by far, the most diverse group of students I’ve had go to the competition. The national competition gives us a chance to showcase our technical skills and show everyone why we’re a leader in applied technology. I hope next year we can increase the number going to nationals and continue to make the college proud.”

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Culinary Students Add Flavor to National Science Festival

Students and faculty from Pennsylvania College of Technology’s School of Business & Hospitality served a “Taste of Technology” at the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C., from April 15-17. From frozen Teddy Grahams to instant ice cream, the students fed guests’ curiosity and appetite. With other exhibitors and science celebrities, the Penn College culinary contingent promoted careers in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math). A video has been added to the college’s YouTube channel, and a photo gallery compiled from the contributions of faculty and staff.

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Unexpected Reunion

John Michael Sabga, left, and Tarik Laroche

From the Spring 2016 One College Avenue magazine: Long before becoming Wildcat soccer teammates, John Michael Sabga and Tarik Laroche shared a “football” field in Trinidad. Read more in “Unexpected Reunion.”

Students Explore Macrobiotics as Key to ‘Big, Full Life’

Phyllis Wise Reynolds talks with students about grain ingredients, around which macrobiotic menus are built, and shows two pasta options.

Wise Reynolds reviews a recipe with student Andrew Scheitle, of Chambersburg.

Student Sarah A. Brunski, of Mount Holly Springs, asks questions before getting started on a pasta recipe.

R. Colby Janowitz, of Westminster, Md., chops vegetables for his group’s macrobiotic dish.

Phyllis Wise Reynolds, a local macrobiotic instructor and certified holistic health counselor, visited the Diet Therapy and Applications class of Chef Michael A. Ditchfield, instructor of hospitality management/culinary arts, on Monday to teach students about macrobiotic cooking. Macrobiotics, she said, means “big life” and centers on food as energy to provide a big, full life. Wise Reynolds turned to macrobiotic eating and cooking when she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia, an autoimmune disease. At the time she was diagnosed, she told students, the disease was not well-known, and there was not yet a recommended medical treatment plan, so she turned to her diet. “As I ate more healthfully, my body responded,” she said. She talked about key ingredients and demonstrated several “whole food” recipes before the 16 students prepared them on their own. “I’m hoping more and more (in the restaurant industry) will understand, when we ask you to prepare something with little salt or no salt, we’re not trying to be difficult,” she told the class. “There are some of us that are just trying to get through life.” The Diet Therapy and Applications course provides study and hands-on application of nutrition as it relates to the life cycle, with a concentration on various states of physical health and its effects on nutritional needs. Topics include diet therapy and modification, nutrition interviewing and assessment, care planning, cultural foods and concerns, and state and federal regulations. Institutional feeding is emphasized.

Taking Care of Business

A showpiece by Brittany L. Mink, of Allentown

Students describe their products and serve up samples in the Hager Lifelong Education Center lobby.

A tasty lineup in the Keystone Dining Room

Jeffrey L. Bretz, of Quakertown, and Courtney K. Brown, of Hanover, show off their business concepts: The Back Door Bakery (“the one and only boozy bakery in Washington, D.C.”), and Two Hands, Two Cookies bakery.

Students in the Advanced Baking and Pastry Operations course set up shop in the Keystone Dining Room on Wednesday, where they hosted “trade show” booths to show off skills in product development, marketing and merchandising. As part of the project, each student develops a new product, determines human resources and facilities requirements, and develops marketing materials – from menus to business cards – and packaging. At the Trade Show, they provided free samples for the college community.
Photos by Michael Richards, web developer

Winners Named in Penn College Wedding Cake Competition

Student Amanda R. D’Apuzzo, of Morganville, New Jersey, designed the top-prize entry in Penn College’s annual wedding cake competition.

Pennsylvania College of Technology recently announced the winners of its annual wedding cake competition, with the top prize going to a cake designed by Amanda R. D’Apuzzo and topped by a hand-molded “glass” slipper.

D’Apuzzo, of Morganville, New Jersey, is pursuing a degree in baking and pastry arts from the college. She is one of 15 Penn College students who competed. All are enrolled in an advanced cake decorating course taught by Chef Todd M. Keeley, instructor of baking and pastry arts/culinary arts.

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Love’s Labour’s Found – With Intricacy, Inspiration

A carefully piped phrase

Fifteen students in the Cakes and Decorations II course concluded the eight-week class Friday with a wedding cake competition. The students’ five-tier cakes were judged by experienced cake decorators Kim Morrison, two-time Grand Prize winner of the National Wedding Cake Competition and owner of Cakes for Occasions in Spring Mills; Samantha Gundlach, owner of Samantha’s Kitchen in Lock Haven and a 2010 Penn College baking and pastry arts graduate; and Sue L. Mayer, owner of Grammy Sue’s Cakes and Cookies in Cogan Station and a retired Penn College baking and pastry arts faculty member. The top four prize-winners were taken to the Atlantic Bakery Expo in Atlantic City, where they competed in the Cake Decorating Extravaganza.

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Speaker to Offer Money-Management Tips in Comedic Performance

Colin Ryan

The public is invited to laugh and learn with comedic financial expert Colin Ryan from 5-6 p.m. Wednesday, April 20, in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Klump Academic Center Auditorium.

Ryan’s appearance is sponsored by the college’s Student Government Association and its chapter of Delta Mu Delta, a national business honor society, as well as the Student Activities Office and the School of Business & Hospitality. Admission is free.

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25 Penn College Hospitality Students to Cook at Kentucky Derby

Churchill Downs Executive Chef David Danielson shows Penn College student Rebecca L. Klinger, of Cogan Station, how to trim vegetables for the college’s 2016 Visiting Chef Series dinner. Klinger is among 25 Penn College students interviewed and selected by Danielson to help prepare food at the May 7 Kentucky Derby.

Twenty-five Pennsylvania College of Technology students will trek to Louisville for the first week of May, where they will join the Churchill Downs culinary team in preparing food for more than 170,000 guests of the storied Kentucky Derby horse race.

The students – all enrolled in hospitality-related majors – were interviewed on campus by Churchill Downs executive chef David Danielson, who remained at the college for several days to mentor students in preparing an elegant Visiting Chef Series dinner.

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Penn College to Exhibit at Nation’s Largest Science Festival

Chef Frank M. Suchwala, associate professor of hospitality management/culinary arts, and baking and pastry arts majors Jeffrey L. Bretz, of Williamsport, and Keegan D. Sonney, of Erie, practice one of the demonstrations for “A Taste of Technology” that they will present for Penn College at the USA Science and Engineering Festival.

Pennsylvania College of Technology representatives will present “A Taste of Technology” for thousands of people hungry to experience STEM fields at the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C., April 15-17.

Led by faculty and students from the School of Business & Hospitality, Penn College representatives will offer hands-on activities for participants to discover the science, technology, engineering and math involved in food preparation.

“We want people to experience aspects of STEM beyond the classroom and in all areas of life,” said Chef Frank M. Suchwala, associate professor of hospitality management/culinary arts and creator of A Taste of Technology. “Specifically, we can show how food can be created and presented in innovative ways using STEM to our advantage.”

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Double Duty: Culinary Major Managing Moe’s Southwest Grill

With a group that includes Vincent J. Matteo (sixth from left), president and chief executive officer of the Williamsport/Lycoming Chamber of Commerce, student/general manager Christopher S. Kasler cuts the ribbon with oversized scissors.

Christopher S. Kasler has been keeping busy balancing a full-time job as the general manager of Moe’s Southwest Grill in Williamsport while working to complete his culinary arts and systems degree at Pennsylvania College of Technology. The Kendall Park, New Jersey, native says he splits his time evenly, but school comes first.

“My work schedule revolves around my class schedule,” Kasler explains. “It’s a rough and demanding routine. There needs to be a level of maturity and determination to be a full-time student working 50-plus hours a week as a general manager. It took me some time to realize that, but, with the right mind-set, anything is possible.”

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‘Interested Students Day’ Provides Much to Hold Their Interest

A prospective student explores the college’s “Interactive Broker” live brokerage software during a session led by Roy A. Fletcher, assistant professor of business administration/banking and finance.

Mark A. Ciavarella, assistant professor of business administration/management, talks with a potential student during a “meet and greet.”

Attending a hands-on demonstration

Michael D. Shipman, instructor of business administration/accounting, attends a session and answers questions.

Admissions Representative Mark R. Capellazzi provides information about the college and its business and accounting majors.

The School of Business & Hospitality invited students who have applied or been accepted to the college’s business and accounting majors to an “Interested Students Day” on Feb. 26. While here, the prospective students were welcomed by the school’s dean and assistant dean, were treated to lunch with faculty, attended hands-on demonstrations in social media marketing and the college’s live brokerage software, and had the opportunity to sit in on a Principles of Management class session taught by Terry A. Girdon, professor of business administration/management. Later, they participated in a meet-and-greet with accounting and business faculty and admissions staff.
Photos by Tia G. La, student photographer

Students Work, Learn Alongside Visiting Chef

Students Patrick R. Cook, of Tioga; Kathryn R. Knause, of Catawissa; and James E. Culp, of Northumberland, absorb the chef’s advice.

Penn College students worked alongside renowned Chef David Danielson, executive chef at Churchill Downs, home of the Kentucky Derby, during last week’s Spring 2016 Visiting Chef Series. During Danielson’s stay on campus, he led the students in preparing a five-course meal that benefits scholarship funds. In addition, he conducted interviews to select students who will join the Churchill Downs culinary team to serve well over 100,000 Kentucky Derby visitors in May. In addition to Churchill Downs, Danielson has worked in top kitchens around the world, including his term as executive chef at the United Nations Plaza Hotel in New York, and catered such large-scale event as the Super Bowl, U.S. Open Tennis Tournament and Grammy Awards.

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Last updated March 1, 2016 | Posted in Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts, Business & Hospitality, Events, Institutional Advancement, Scholarships | This gallery contains 28 photos. | Tagged as | 2 Comments

Penn College Cook to Prepare Dish in Regional Culinary Challenge

Chef Cody J. Miller, head cook at Penn College’s Capitol Eatery

A head cook in one of Pennsylvania College of Technology’s dining venues – and a graduate from its culinary arts program – is set to compete March 6 in the National Association of College & University Food Services Mid-Atlantic Region Culinary Challenge.

Chef Cody J. Miller, of Williamsport, will prepare an original recipe: poached Misty Mountain Farms free-range egg with braised kale and charred-corn-and-edamame Bhutanese red rice hash.

He is head cook in the college’s largest dining facility, Capitol Eatery, an all-you-care-to-eat dining room in the Dauphin Hall residence.

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