News about Health Sciences

Penn College Program Receives Merit Award From National Board

In a Penn College laboratory, surgical technology students learn to facilitate safe and effective surgical procedures.

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s surgical technology program has received the annual merit award from the National Board of Surgical Technology and Surgical Assisting for achieving at least a 90-percent pass rate on the Certified Surgical Technologist examination between Aug. 1, 2014, and July 31, 2015.

Graduates obtaining national certification as a CST demonstrate, by examination, understanding of the basic competencies for safe patient care in the operating room. The CST credential is required for employment as a surgical technologist within many health care organizations.

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PA Students Add to Health Services’ Flu-Fighting Arsenal

Savanna R. Stauffer, a physician assistant student from Ephrata, draws a dose of the vaccine into a syringe.

PA student Bryce A. Petersheim, of Birdsboro, administers a flu shot to Francis J. Quigley, an engineering design technology student from Coatesville.

After a reportedly pain-free injection, physician assistant student Jessica A. Gmerek, of Bellefonte, applies an adhesive bandage to Katelin E. Thompson, an occupational therapy assistant major from Osceola Mills.

Physician assistant students joined the crew of School of Health Sciences students who are putting their education to use for the Penn College community this week, helping to administer flu shots in College Health Services. Nursing students are also taking shifts providing the vaccines, which are available through 4 p.m. Monday and from 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. College Health Services, on the first floor of the Bush Campus Center, is providing the shots to Penn College students, employees and their spouses and dependents (9 years and older) at a cost of $15.

Explore Penn College’s ‘Degrees That Work’ at Oct. 25 Open House

Penn College’s Oct. 25 Open House provides an ideal opportunity to explore “degrees that work.”

The distinctive, hands-on academic programs offered at Pennsylvania College of Technology, a national leader in applied technology education, will be highlighted at Open House on Sunday, Oct. 25.

Held twice a year, Open House at Penn College provides prospective students and their families an opportunity to sample campus life and learn about 100-plus bachelor’s and associate degrees and certificates.

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Nursing Students Administer Flu Vaccinations

Luke D. Spang (left), of Manheim, inoculates classmate Benjamin S. Leibig, of Lebanon.

Engaging in participatory journalism, student photographer Caleb G. Schirmer – an applied management major from Sugarloaf – is vaccinated by Haylea D. Estright, of Brisbin.

James N, Ahern, an information assurance and cyber security major from Mechanicsburg, rolls up his sleeve for Monirh S. Larkpor, of Darby.

In a collaboration between Penn College’s Nursing Department and College Health Services, bachelor-degree students in Terri A. Stone’s Fundamentals of Nursing class gave flu shots Thursday in the Bush Campus Center. Health Services will continue to provide the vaccinations to faculty, staff, students, dependents and spouses from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday and 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday. The cost of the flu vaccine is $15, payable by cash, check (payable to Penn College) or credit card. According to Health Services, the only medical reason why someone should not receive the flu vaccine is an allergy to eggs, neomycin or polymixin, or a previous life-threatening reaction to an influenza vaccine.

Professionals Meet ‘Future of Dental Hygiene’ at Campus Conference

James Farrer, executive director of the Northcentral Pennsylvania Area Health Education Center, welcomes a large crowd of dental health professionals to Penn’s Inn.

The day’s featured presenter, Betsy Reynolds, RDH, MS, has fun with the crowd.

Applauded as “the future of dental hygiene,” a group of Penn College students stands at the speaker’s request.

Penn’s Inn was the host site for the region’s 14th Annual Oral Health Conference, co-sponsored by the Northcentral Pennsylvania Area Health Education Center and Penn College’s Dental Hygiene Program. Dental professionals gathered from across the region for a day of professional development featuring registered dental hygienist and oral biologist Betsy Reynolds, who presented the topic “New Horizons in Periodontal Therapy.” Among attendees were students in Penn College’s dental hygiene majors and a significant number of the program’s alumni. The Northcentral Pennsylvania AHEC works to improve health care access and build a quality health care workforce in its 10-county region. It is one of seven AHEC regions in Pennsylvania. Three Penn College staff members serve on the regional AHEC’s board of directors.

Penn College Celebrates National Surgical Technologists Week

Students in Penn College’s surgical technology major join hospitals and colleges nationwide in celebrating National Surgical Technologists Week. Front row, from left, are Michelle Acosta, Williamsport; Kelly M. Anderson, Montgomery; Kelly L. Jones, Camp Hill; Meghan E. Androsik, Perryopolis; Jessica K. McCloskey, Bellefonte; and Jon R. Tyler, Bloomsburg. Back row, from left, are Billie L. Snyder, Williamsport; Angelika Y. Goncharova, Boalsburg; Andrea L. Whitley, Nesquehoning; William A. Wyatt, Williamsport; Dezirae R. Dreese, Selinsgrove; Haley A. Rhinehart, Jersey Shore; Tiffany J. Hoffman, Troy; and Madison E. McCracken, Morrisdale.

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s surgical technology Class of 2016 is joining hospitals and colleges throughout the country in celebrating National Surgical Technologists Week, Sept. 20-26.

The occupation demands attention to detail and procedures. Surgical technologists provide care to surgical patients before, during and after surgery and are an integral part of the surgical team during surgery, working under the supervision of a surgeon to facilitate the safe and effective conduct of surgical procedures.

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Three Montoursville Sisters Attend Penn College

Penn College is a family affair for the Bennett sisters, from left, Aubrey G. (nursing), Ainsley R. (graphic design) and Addey L. (diesel technology).

Depending on the preferred cliché, threes may be a threat, a charm or a crowd. For the Bennett family of Montoursville, it’s a triple blessing that all three sisters are attending Pennsylvania College of Technology.

Aubrey G., 23; Ainsley R., 20; and Addey L., 19, are enrolled in a range of majors: nursing, graphic design and diesel technology, respectively.

Aubrey said the proximity of the college to their home and the ability to save money by commuting made the choice “perfect for our situation.”

According to the sisters, they are the first generation in their family to attend college, and their mother was the encouraging factor.

“Mom really pushed for it,” Addey said. “She always said she wanted us to have what she didn’t have.”

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ADHA Recognizes Penn College Student Chapter

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Student American Dental Hygienists’ Association was recently honored by its parent organization.

The American Dental Hygienists’ Association presented the Penn College group with its Graduate Transition Award. The award recognizes student member chapters having a graduate conversion rate to ADHA membership of 90 percent or greater.

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Nursing Students Gain Firsthand Sensitivity to Age-Related Impairment

Nursing students Katelyn I. Arthur, of Muncy, and Tayler D. Mathias, of Watsontown, attempt to read a health history form while wearing glasses that mimic glaucoma.

Karen L. Martin, associate professor of medical-surgical nursing, guides students in the Fundamentals of Nursing course through the exercise.

With taped and gloved fingers and a variety of visual impairments, students attempt to remove pills from bottles.

On Wednesday, Karen L. Martin, associate professor of medical-surgical nursing, engaged students in the Fundamentals of Nursing course in a hands-on activity intended to help them relate to patients and the changes that occur with the aging process. Students taped their fingers, placed cotton in their ears and wore glasses intended to mimic glaucoma, cataracts and macular degeneration. The students were then asked to fill out health history forms, look up a phone number, retrieve pills from medicine bottles and count change. The activity is meant to help students gain competency in the areas of communication, critical thinking and cultural sensitivity. The students expressed appreciation for the activity.
Photos courtesy of the Nursing Program

College Volunteers in Behind-the-Scenes Report on LLB Series

Trueman (left) and Finkelstein-Diaz in WNEP report

Newswatch 16’s Kristina Papa incorporated volunteers from Penn College’s School of Health Sciences in her Tuesday report on preparations for the Little League Baseball World Series. The WNEP multimedia journalist recently interviewed Mark A. Trueman, director of paramedic technology programs; and emergency medical services and paramedic technician students Louis J. Mazzante IV, of Montoursville, and Adam N. Finkelstein-Diaz, of Stroudsburg. Series play begins in South Williamsport on Thursday, the day after the college hosts a cookout for the 16 bracketed teams before the Grand Slam Parade down West Fourth Street.

College’s Exemplary Labs Showcased at Simulation Conference

A "patient" awaits a hands-on CPR session offered by Laerdal's Kevin Webb.

A prelunch panel prompts an informative give-and-take on integrating simulation into the curriculum. From left are Sonya R. Echols, director of healthcare simulation at DeSales University; Joseph A. Corvino, director of simulation learning at Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences; Tushanna M. Habalar, Penn College's learning laboratory coordinator for nursing education (moving to full-time nursing faculty this week); Bambi A. Hawkins, learning laboratory coordinator for the college paramedic program; and Mark A. Trueman, director of paramedic technology programs at the college. Standing at right is Jessica L. Bower, who facilitated the discussion ...

... and later led tours of Penn College's simulation laboratories.

About 40 participants, nearly half of them faculty/staff of Penn College’s School of Health Sciences, participated in Tuesday’s daylong meeting of the Simulation User Network. Held in the nursing wing of the Breuder Advanced Technology & Health Sciences Center and sponsored by Laerdal Medical, the first-ever local conference offered a collaborative forum for health educators interested in initiating or augmenting patient simulation. “Our faculty really appreciate how much simulation enhances teaching methodology and student learning,” said Jessica L. Bower, simulation laboratory coordinator for nursing education. “We are very lucky to have the labs and resources that we have. Today was also a great day to network and learn what others are doing in the world of health-care simulation.” In addition to a panel discussion on “Best Practices in Simulation,” the program included sessions on the importance of team-performance debriefing, implementation of effective training scenarios and a cardiopulmonary resuscitation demonstration.

Student Speaker Shares Message of Pride, Perseverance

Kyle G. Stavinski

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s meaningful tradition of choosing graduating students to speak at commencement exercises continued Saturday, as Kyle G. Stavinski delivered remarks that blended humor, humility, history and gratitude – both for the family and friends in his corner and for the alma mater that will inform his tomorrows. “Today, we say goodbye to everything that was familiar to us. We’re moving on, but just because we’re leaving … and that hurts,” said the Elysburg resident, who was awarded an associate degree in emergency medical services. “Our Penn College education and family will be with us no matter where we roam. Penn College has become our foundation of growth, our north star and the small, clear voice inside our head that makes the uncertainty we will encounter through life our friend – the voice giving us hope for the future so we can make a difference.”

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Students to Stand Ready to Help at International Athletics Event

A large contingent of Pennsylvania College of Technology students is set to assist the Little League Baseball World Series medical team when sports fans around the world focus on Williamsport in late August.

Students studying to become dental hygienists, paramedics and physician assistants will lend their hands and gain valuable experience during the 11-day championship that draws 16 teams and thousands of fans to the Little League Baseball World Series Complex, just a few miles from Penn College’s main campus.

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Dental Hygiene Students Offer Care at Nicaraguan School

Penn College dental hygiene: health policy and administration concentration student Carrie M. Derk, of Chambersburg, offers a demonstration of proper tooth-brushing technique to children in the Santo Domingo neighborhood of Managua, Nicaragua

Six Pennsylvania College of Technology students and their instructor recently traveled to Nicaragua, where they provided dental care for students at a school for very poor children.

La Escuelita (The Little School) is in the Santo Domingo section of the city of Managua. The community was declared uninhabitable following a 1972 earthquake, but the poorest of the city continued to settle in the area. Still, much of Santo Domingo has not been rebuilt. Many adults hold informal jobs selling food and drinks at the large Oriental Market.

“The most surprising experience in Nicaragua was to see these children and their families who had so little, but were so happy in life,” said student Carrie M. Derk, of Chambersburg.

“Everyone was so warm and friendly,” added Claudia N. Naylor, of Littlestown. “I expected to see despair, but instead I saw people with a zest for life.”

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Last updated July 17, 2015 | Posted in Dental Hygiene, Faculty & Staff, Health Sciences, Students | This gallery contains 5 photos. | Tagged as | 2 Comments

State Cabinet Officials Tour Campus on ‘Jobs’ Visit

With campus beauty all around, including the "Student Bodies" art installation spanning the campus mall, the group takes a shady stroll north from the ATHS.

Stopping by the dental hygiene lab

Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour (left) walks with Secretary Manderino and others alongside the robotic welding stations.

Michael K. Patterson, a member of the college's welding faculty, scores a hit with his impressive work-in-progress: a larger-than-life baseball glove, complete with welded metal strands to simulate stitching.

Secretary Davin, at the podium

Two cabinet secretaries from Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration continued the “Jobs That Pay” tour in a Monday visit to Penn College, where they focused on workforce development and employer-training initiatives within the governor’s proposed 2015-16 budget for the commonwealth. Department of Community and Economic Development Secretary Dennis M. Davin and Department of Labor & Industry Secretary Kathy M. Manderino toured the college’s dental hygiene and welding labs, instructional areas that could benefit from a proposed increase in state appropriation. A press conference followed in the welding lab.