Pennsylvania College of Technology held its Winter Commencement on Saturday at Williamsport’s Community Arts Center, honoring Fall 2014 graduates and ringing down the curtain on a yearlong 100th-anniversary celebration. Student speaker Nicole Marie Reyes-Molina, of Lancaster, a deaf student who received an Associate of Applied Science in building construction technology: masonry emphasis, represented the year’s final Centennial class during the 11 a.m. event. Nearly 300 degrees were conferred by college President Davie Jane Gilmour and state Sen. Gene Yaw, chair of the Penn College Board of Directors, who was surprised with a leadership award during the ceremony.
America’s largest indoor agricultural exposition and one of the country’s leaders in applied technology education will converge in Harrisburg during the new year, as Pennsylvania College of Technology once again maintains a daily presence at the Pennsylvania Farm Show.
Representatives of Penn College’s Admissions Office will be available from Jan. 10-17 in the Farm Show Complex & Expo Center, 2300 N. Cameron St., and visitors can get acquainted with the college’s six academic schools throughout the traditional event.
“The 99th Pennsylvania Farm Show is an exciting opportunity for the college to showcase its 100-plus majors – associate and bachelor’s degrees that offer hands-on experience with industry-focused faculty,” said Dennis L. Correll, associate dean for admissions and financial aid. “Our degrees are proven ‘degrees that work,’ with over 94-percent placement rates at graduation. Be sure to stop by our booth and see our demonstrations each day.”
The Penn College family is included in a holiday sale for next month’s Community Arts Center appearance by the Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra. Get half off adult tickets in the orchestra section (starting at $12.50) through Wednesday, Dec. 31. In addition, all student tickets are just $5 throughout the theater! Go online and enter promotional code XMASTREAT, then proceed to “Buy.” The discount price will appear once you click on a seat. This offer is not valid on previously purchased tickets. Full-price adult tickets are $35, $30 and $25. The loge and balcony are closed for this event. If you call or stop by the box office, please be sure to give the promotional code before purchasing tickets. Discounted student ticket prices are available for pre-school through college. College students must present valid student ID on the night of the show. Renowned for its winning combination of charming humor, its disarmingly small instruments and its sublime musicality, the Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra is one of the world’s great modern ukulele acts. Hailing from the home of “The Hobbit” movies, the orchestra will bring an irresistible New Zealand heartland feel to the Arts Center’s stage at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 8. The orchestra presents the ukulele as it’s never been played before, featuring songs made famous by such artists as Justin Timberlake, Dolly Parton, Elvis Presley, The Beatles, Hall and Oates, Cyndi Lauper, Prince, Kenny Rogers, and Kings of Leon – alongside tunes from the South Pacific – packaged into a spectacular, unmissable funfest. The wildly popular ensemble creates instant joy and lasting magic wherever it goes, armed with high-octane ukulele solos, heavenly harmonies and outrageous costumes. Its members’ comedic banter is spontaneous, and, when the group bursts into song, the sweet sounds can silence a room in a nanosecond or bring a crowd of thousands to its feet. For more information on the Wellington International Ukulele Orchestra and to hear its music, please visit the Arts Center’s website, click on “shows” in the header and choose “Music” from the dropdown menu. The Community Arts Center, a wholly owned subsidiary of Penn College, is located just a few blocks from campus at 220 W. Fourth St. in downtown Williamsport.
The Centennial Legacy Celebration, recognizing the donors who help further Penn College’s mission – and showcasing the talented students in the School of Business & Hospitality – was held Saturday evening in the Hager Lifelong Education Center. Invited guests enjoyed dinner in Le Jeune Chef Restaurant, bookended by appetizers and a Grand Pastry Buffet in the Keystone Dining Room. The phenomenal success of the Centennial-related Penn College Scholarship Campaign was noted by President Davie Jane Gilmour, who said more than $6.1 million has already been pledged … and more gifts are expected before a final total is announced in mid-January. “This additional scholarship support will help the college pursue its vision of being a national leader in applied technology education,” she told donors, “and it was only made possible thanks to your generous support and commitment to Penn College. The impact of your generosity is already being felt by students, as the (Penn College) Foundation has awarded more than $600,000 in scholarships this academic year – a 150-percent increase from the start of the campaign!” Support came from many members of the college community, who donated to an existing scholarship or established one of the 71 new funds added over the past three and a half years. The broad-based demonstration of support involved 653 alumni, 439 employees and retirees, 598 friends of the college and 197 industry partners.
“Winter in New York” was the theme for Snow Ball, the Wildcat Events Board’s annual semiformal dance. Held Friday night in the Capitol Lounge of the Community Arts Center in downtown Williamsport, the event featured a DJ and a menu catered by Le Jeune Chef Restaurant.
Photos by George S. Phillips Jr., an advertising art major from Williamsport
The School of Business & Hospitality hosted 300 high school students on campus Friday for “Hospitality Day.” The students attended a demonstration by Chef Charles R. Niedermyer, instructor of baking and pastry arts/culinary arts, in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium, toured hospitality facilities, a residence hall and other parts of campus, and visited the Thompson Professional Development Center, where Penn College students and faculty provided demonstrations and samples.
About 700 Penn College students quelled their anxious appetites at the 18th fall installment of Dining Services’ “Midnight Breakfast,” a stress-relieving speed bump along the on-ramp to Finals Week. From 10:30 p.m. Thursday to 12:30 a.m. Friday, attendees enjoyed pancakes, bacon, eggs, home fries, fruit bars, yogurt, granola and beverages – all for free in the Keystone Dining Room. Jon D. Wescott, director of residence life and judicial affairs, helped flip the flapjacks while a team of Residence Life coordinators pitched in on the serving line. In addition to the yummy food, participants could ease their pretest jitters through professional massages, a laugh-inducing photo booth and commiseration with classmates.
Photos by Abdullah H. Muaddi, student photographer
Attendees at Wednesday’s yearly lighting ceremony enjoyed free hot chocolate and cookies, as well as the delicious suspense of wondering which holiday cards were chosen as this year’s favorites. But the festivities didn’t stop when the winners were announced! There was also a photo booth where students could grab some wacky pictures with their friends, a do-it-yourself table where participants created “Mason jar snow candle” novelties, and a movie-ticket raffle in exchange for donations of nonperishable and personal-care items to local social-service agencies. Among this year’s student entries, the Veterans Club’s card placed first, the Student Government Association was awarded second prize and the Diesel Performance Club was third. In the office category, Madigan Library earned top honors, The College Store placed second, and Assessment, Research and Planning finished third.
Photos by Dalaney T. Vartenisian, student photographer
A commencement ceremony will be held Saturday, Dec. 20, for the nearly 290 Pennsylvania College of Technology students who have petitioned to graduate after the Fall 2014 semester.
The ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. in the Community Arts Center, 220 W. Fourth St., Williamsport.
The premiere showing of “Working Class: 100 Years of Hands-On Education,” a one-hour film that chronicles the history of Penn College and its contribution to the American workforce, has been rescheduled for 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 8, in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium. (Tuesday’s presentation of the documentary, a co-production of the college and WVIA Public Media, was postponed due to inclement weather.) “Working Class” is also set to be broadcast on public television early next year.
2014 marks a milestone in the institution's rich history, from the inception of adult classes in the Williamsport Area School District in 1914, through its evolution into Williamsport Technical Institute, Williamsport Area Community College, and present-day Pennsylvania College of Technology. Read about the institution's history →
A reception and artist’s talk were held Thursday at The Gallery at Penn College, which is hosting an exhibit of fascinating and colorful oil paintings by Jennifer R.A. Campbell through Dec. 14. “Lotus Eaters” can be viewed on the third floor of Madigan Library during regular gallery hours: 1-4 p.m. Sundays, 2-7 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays, and 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Wednesdays and Fridays. The gallery is closed Mondays and Saturdays – and from Nov. 26-30 for the Thanksgiving Break.
Photos by Dalaney T. Vartenisian, student photographer
Nearly 100 sky lanterns drifted over campus Wednesday night in a fundraiser for children battling pediatric cancer, as members of Penn College Benefiting THON draw nearer to February’s culminating 46-hour dance marathon at Penn State. For $1 each, supporters could purchase a paper lantern to be illuminated and cast aloft on the lawn outside the Thompson Professional Development Center. The second-year organization is hoping to top its inaugural collection of $13,000 in 2013-14, and will be “canning” – carrying canisters to collect local donations from passing cars and pedestrians in well-traveled areas – on Dec. 5-7. Interested donors can also visit the THON Web page, click “Donate Now” and select Penn College as their organization of choice. The annual “no-sleeping, no-sitting” dance marathon will be held Feb. 20-22 in Bryce Jordan Center; THON has raised more than $114 million since 1977.
The annual fair-trade sale organized by human services students in the Community and Organizational Change course is being held through Friday in the lobby of Penn College’s Bush Campus Center. The Ten Thousand Villages Festival sale features artisanal items from various other countries’ working poor.
Photos by Abdullah H. Muaddi, student photographer
This weekend’s Will Huffman Toy Train Expo, a holiday homage to a “less-complicated world of wonder and nostalgia,” will once again include volunteers from the Penn College family. When the 24th annual event opens its doors at Park Place, 800 W. Fourth St., three college employees will be among those with model-railroad layouts on display: Max E. Ameigh, a part-time faculty member in advertising art; Patrick M. Breen, a first-shift custodian; and – exhibiting for the first time – Cletus G. Waldman Jr., clinical director of radiography. The Expo honors its late founder, who said, “Every Christmas tree should have a model train running around it,” and whose sons further the college connection: “Conductor” Eric W. is a shipping/receiving worker and Bruce E. is a former instructor of media arts/video production. Helping hands come from other corners of the campus, including the General Services workers who delivered more than 65 tables in Wednesday’s sub-freezing temperatures. Additionally, personal computers and monitors on loan from the college’s Information Technology Services (with thanks to Mike Cunningham, vice president for information technology/chief information officer, and Brad A. Miller, manager of technical support) will allow attendees to test their locomotive skill through simulation software. Others from Penn College include Eric Huffman’s wife, Linda D., a General Services custodian who staffs the admission table, and Patricia M. Russell, a part-time/substitute faculty member in building construction management, who is affiliated with the host venue. A portion of this year’s adult donations will be shared with the Lycoming County SPCA and the Lycoming Animal Protection Society Inc.; children are admitted free. Held in conjunction with the neighborhood’s Victorian Christmas, the event will be held from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday and noon-4 p.m. Sunday.
A free screening of “Fed Up,” which focuses on the causes of obesity in the U.S. and argues that the large quantity of sugar in processed foods is an overlooked root of the problem, will be held at 7 p.m. Monday in Penn’s Inn (Bush Campus Center, second floor). Presented by the Student Activities Office and billed as “the film the food industry doesn’t want you to see,” the PG-rated documentary has a running time of 92 minutes. Produced and narrated by Katie Couric and executive-produced by Laurie David (an Oscar-winner for “An Inconvenient Truth”), the film is directed by Stephanie Soechtig.