News: Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts

Culinary Student Wins ‘Golden’ Opportunity to Compete in Vegas
Photo gallery

Jessica N. Felton holds her "Golden Ticket," seconds after Gerri F. Luke, interim dean of business and hospitality, and Chef Paul E. Mach, assistant professor of hospitality management/culinary arts, delivered the surprising news in her Cakes and Decorations class.

Jessica N. Felton, a culinary arts and systems major from State College, has won the right to represent Pennsylvania College of Technology at this year’s World Food Championships in Las Vegas. She was among six School of Business & Hospitality students who vied Monday night for a “Golden Ticket” to compete in the Nov. 12-18 event. The entry was granted by award-winning chef and television host Ben Vaughn, who visited campus earlier this month; the college will pay airfare and lodging. Other participants in the on-campus competition were culinary arts and systems majors Christopher S. Kasler, of Kendall Park, New Jersey; Zachary A. Knol, of Annville; and Victoria L. Zablocky, of Jersey Shore; and baking and pastry arts students Katlyn J. Hackling, of Lake Hiawatha, New Jersey, and Victoria L. Kostecki, of Center Valley. Two flights of students, whose dishes were timed from prep to plate, were judged by faculty members under WFC guidelines and the school’s standards for sanitation and safety. Scores were tabulated in a variety of categories covering execution, appearance and taste, and the winner was announced at noon Tuesday in Le Jeune Chef Restaurant.

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Diner’s Club Tours Area Vineyard, Plans Fall Activities

Kneeling: Amber S. English, Lewistown, hospitality management. Standing, from left: Katelynn M. Watson, Milton, culinary arts technology; Jessica N. Felton, State College, culinary arts and systems; Jessica R. Wollet, Williamsport, culinary arts technology; Alex D. Mytinger, New Berlin, occupational therapy assistant; and Dr. Chuck Zaleski, owner of Fero Vineyards & Winery.

Kneeling: Amber S. English, Lewistown, hospitality management. Standing, from left: Katelynn M. Watson, Milton, culinary arts technology; Jessica N. Felton, State College, culinary arts and systems; Jessica R. Wollet, Williamsport, culinary arts technology; Alex D. Mytinger, New Berlin, occupational therapy assistant; and Dr. Chuck Zaleski, owner of Fero Vineyards & Winery.

A winery tour

A winery tour

Harvest helpers

Harvest helpers

The Penn College Diner’s Club recently visited Fero Vineyards & Winery just outside Lewisburg, where the students helped to harvest grapes for pinot noir wine and toured the facility’s processing operation. The club has several more outings planned, including visits to Williamsport’s First Friday, participation in Oktoberfest events, ice-carving demonstrations at Penn College’s Open House, and trick-or-treating at local hospitals.
Photos provided

Chef Shares Occupational Ups, Downs and All-Around ‘Simple’ Philosophy

Vaughn addresses an attentive group culinary arts, baking and pastry arts and hospitality management students in the SASC Presentation Room.

Vaughn addresses an attentive group culinary arts, baking and pastry arts and hospitality management students in the SASC Presentation Room.

Adding a visual aid to his vivid storytelling, Vaughn “toasts” bread.

Adding a visual aid to his vivid storytelling, Vaughn “toasts” bread.

Many students sought to record their visit with the chef.

Many students sought to record their visit with the chef.

Vaughn’s humorous storytelling accompanies evening talk on “Sustaining Your Career in a Changing Industry.”

Vaughn’s humorous storytelling accompanies evening talk on “Sustaining Your Career in a Changing Industry.”

Award-winning chef, television host and author Ben Vaughn spent the day on campus Wednesday, visiting classes in the School of Business & Hospitality and providing talks to both the public and to students in hospitality-related majors. His afternoon demonstration for students included practical – and frank – lessons from the pitfalls and successes of his own career. An evening lecture in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium, part of the college’s William C. Butler Lecture Series, addressed the need for a nationwide return to “simple food.” During his talk with students, he announced that he is giving one “golden ticket” to a Penn College student to compete at the World Food Championships (for which he is a host) this November in Las Vegas. In the coming weeks, the college will host a competition to determine who it will send to the event.

Chef Ben Vaughn Lecture Rescheduled to Sept. 10

Chef Ben Vaughn (center), with Chef Charles R. Niedermyer's Advanced Patisserie Operations class on Wednesday morning

A lecture at Pennsylvania College of Technology by award-winning chef and television host Ben Vaughn has been rescheduled to Sept. 10 at 6:30 p.m. in the Klump Academic Center auditorium.

The lecture, which is free and open to the public, is titled “Sustaining Your Career in a Changing Industry: How to Find Your Food Voice.”

Vaughn is a popular TV personality best known as a host on the Food Network. He’s also the host of the World Food Championships and is a recurring judge on the hit FYI television series based on the event.

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Le Jeune Chef Restaurant Again Receives Wine Spectator Award

Wine Spectator magazine recently released its annual Restaurant Wine List Awards program, again naming Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Le Jeune Chef Restaurant among the “Best of Award of Excellence” recipients.

The restaurant is one of 883 worldwide to earn the magazine’s second-tier “Best of” award. Only 74 restaurants received the top-tier “Grand Award,” and 2,789 restaurants received the magazine’s “Award of Excellence.”

A robust wine list helps to fulfill Le Jeune Chef’s role in offering “an education in fine dining,” providing opportunities for the hospitality management and culinary arts students who gain hands-on experience in the restaurant to learn about wine service and food-and-wine pairings, and benefiting patrons who wish to learn more about wine.

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Students Complete Internships at Knoebels Amusement Resort

Penn College baking and pastry arts students Autumn E. MacInnis, of Trout Run, and Timothy L. Kuntz, of Wyalusing, spent the summer interning at Knoebels Amusement Resort’s Cookie Nook.

Two baking and pastry arts students from Pennsylvania College of Technology spent the summer helping to fill thousands of stomachs at one of the area’s most-loved destinations: Knoebels Amusement Resort in Elysburg.

Autumn E. MacInnis, of Trout Run, and Timothy L. Kuntz, of Wyalusing, spent the summer producing baked goods at the park’s Cookie Nook.

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Students Meet ‘Food Network’ Competitor During Trip to York

Students Timothy L. Kuntz, of Wyalusing, Jonathan T. Hall, of Williamsport, and Autumn E. MacInnis, of Trout Run, meet with Chef Joseph Cumm, recent winner of the Food Network's "King of Cones."

Students Timothy L. Kuntz, of Wyalusing, Jonathan T. Hall, of Williamsport, and Autumn E. MacInnis, of Trout Run, meet with Chef Joseph Cumm, recent winner of the Food Network’s “King of Cones.”

Baking and pastry arts students traveled to York Technical Institute to meet YTI instructor and Food Network winner Chef Joseph Cumm, including watching his television appearance.

Baking and pastry arts students traveled to York Technical Institute to meet YTI instructor and Food Network winner Chef Joseph Cumm, including watching his television appearance.

The School of Business & Hospitality’s Chef Todd M. Keeley and three students recently traveled to York Technical Institute to meet Chef Joseph Cumm, winner of the Aug. 11 episode of Food Network’s “King of Cones” competition. On the show, Cumm defeated three competitors with three ice cream treats – each including an assigned mystery ingredient.  Cumm has been an instructor with the The Pennsylvania School of Culinary Arts at YTI Career Institute-Lancaster for three years and owns EdenJoes Cakery in York with his wife. In 2013, he won “The Art of Cake” competition at Pastry Live, and will return this year as a judge. Cumm has also been selected as one of several dozen Cake Artists to teach at CakeFest 2015 in Louisiana in February. The Penn College students had the opportunity to watch the four-part challenge and listen to Chef Cumm share his career and Food Network experience.

Renowned Chef to Present Lecture at Penn College

Chef Ben Vaughn

(EDITOR’S NOTE: The lecture was subsequently rescheduled to Sept. 10.)

Food Network host and James Beard Award nominee Chef Ben Vaughn will offer a free public lecture Sept. 4 at Pennsylvania College of Technology. Vaughn’s talk, part of the college’s William C. Butler Lecture Series, is titled “Sustaining Your Career in a Changing Industry: How to Find Your Food Voice.” While presented from the point of view of a culinary professional, sustainability in one’s craft is an appropriate message for students and professionals in any field, explained Chef Charles R. Niedermyer, instructor of baking and pastry arts/culinary arts. The lecture will take place at 6:30 p.m. in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium. Continue reading →

Faculty Member, Student Share Summer Treats With TV Audience

Cooking up something special in the "PA Live!" kitchen

Cooking up something special in the “PA Live!” kitchen

Cody M. Yonkin on the set

Cody M. Yonkin on the set

Chef Mary G. Trometter, assistant professor of hospitality management and culinary arts, and Cody M. Yonkin, a culinary arts technology major from South Williamsport, prepared variations on a healthy summer salad during WBRE’s “PA live!” broadcast Wednesday afternoon. The pair also talked with guest host Eric Petersen about the benefits of obtaining produce from Penn College’s hydroculture garden and from local growers.
Recipe: Farro, fruit and mint salad

Interim Dean of Business & Hospitality Named at Penn College

Gerri F. Luke

Pennsylvania College of Technology has appointed Gerri F. Luke as interim dean of the School of Business & Hospitality, effective July 28.

Luke is currently a professor of business administration/management and marketing at Penn College. She received the college’s Veronica M. Muzic Master Teacher Award in May 2013. She joined the college faculty in 2004 and is a former chair of College Council, part of Penn College’s Internal Governance system.

“We are very pleased to have Dr. Gerri Luke agree to serve as interim dean for the School of Business & Hospitality,” said Paul L. Starkey, vice president for academic affairs/provost. “She has all the qualities one hopes to find in higher-education leaders. She is passionate about the quality of teaching and learning at Penn College. She has been intimately involved in shared governance and accreditation. Her colleagues among the faculty welcome her appointment, as do the other deans and I.”

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Instructor, Recent Grad Part of Live TV Broadcast

Chef Charles Niedermyer and recent graduate Ching Chan prepare for their live appearance at WBRE’s studios.

Chef Charles Niedermyer and recent graduate Ching Chan prepare for their live appearance at WBRE’s studios.

A faculty member and an alumna of Penn College’s School of Business & Hospitality appeared on WBRE’s “PA live!” broadcast Tuesday afternoon. Chef Charles R. Niedermyer, instructor of baking and pastry arts and culinary arts, and Ching Chan, who graduated last month with an associate degree in baking and pastry arts, demonstrated how to make a summer fruit tart. The pair also talked with host Dave Kuharchik about Chan’s “Best in Show” honors at the recent Grand Pastry Buffet and discussed the school’s related majors.
Photo provided

Grand Pastry Buffet Includes Student Competition

“Best in Show” was awarded to baking and pastry arts student Ching Chan, of Milton, for her petit fours tray at Penn College’s Grand Pastry Buffet.

Baking and pastry arts students at Pennsylvania College of Technology recently furnished a lavish “Grand Pastry Buffet” for the college’s scholarship donors and recipients, showcasing two years of education.

Featuring tables filled with eye-pleasing pastries, the buffet also featured decorative centerpieces made from chocolate, pastillage and blown sugar, all using the theme “masquerade.”

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Artisan Baker Shares Tips, Techniques With Penn College Students

Kris Patterson, of the Penn State Bakery, demonstrates the classic baguette.

Kris Patterson, of the Penn State Bakery, demonstrates the classic baguette.

The baguettes enter the oven.

The baguettes enter the oven.

Students check the texture and color.

Students check the texture and color.

Patterson and the Bake Shop Production class

Patterson and the Bake Shop Production class

Kris Patterson, head artisan baker for the Penn State Bakery, recently visited Penn College’s baking, pastry and culinary arts laboratories to work with students in the Principles of Bake Shop Production class. Patterson offered a hands-on workshop on bread preferments and the impact each has on the final product. He demonstrated the techniques of preferment preparation and dough mixing for the classic baguette. Each mixing method and preferment produces a different flavor and texture in the result. For example: A dough that is mixed longer will have a tighter air-cell structure and a whiter color because of the oxidation. One mixed less can have a creamier color, larger air-cell structure and a denser crust. Each student was also taught the method of shaping the classic baguette, as well as the scoring techniques − the cuts that are made on the risen, shaped dough before it goes into the oven. “Kris has been a great support to the students of the baking and pastry program,” said Chef Monica J. Lanczak, instructor of baking and pastry arts/culinary arts. In addition to Patterson’s visits to Penn College classes, two baking and pastry arts students − Abigail C. Wilks, of Phillipsburg, and Kelsey L. Park, of Bellefonte − are interning at the Penn State University Bakery this summer. One of the largest scratch bakeries in the continental U.S., the bakery serves six dining halls, 11 campus operations and 48 residence halls. It produces about 59,000 loaves of bread and 89,500 dozen cookies each year.
Photos by Chef Monica J. Lanczak

‘Excellent’ Students Selected to Attend National Restaurant Show

Two students in baking, pastry and culinary arts majors at Pennsylvania College of Technology were selected by faculty to receive the “Award of Excellence,” which included an educational trip to the National Restaurant Association’s 2014 NRA Show.

The May graduates, Amy E. Lynn, who earned an associate degree in baking and pastry arts, and Lewis D. Robinson, who earned a bachelor’s degree in culinary arts and systems and an associate degree in baking and pastry arts, were selected based on their academic records and their service to Penn College’s School of Business & Hospitality.

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Winners Named in Penn College Pastry Show

The School of Business & Hospitality at Pennsylvania College of Technology recently hosted its Culinary and Pastry Experience, allowing students in baking, pastry and culinary arts majors to showcase their final projects for the college community and industry judges.

From among more than 70 entries, Best of Show was awarded to Kristina M. Williams, a baking and pastry arts student from South Williamsport, for a chocolate sculpture featuring a chameleon perched atop stylized greenery.

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