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.
Four first-semester students in Penn College’s associate-degree RN preparation major visited Messiah Senior Community Center in South Williamsport on Tuesday to provide free health screenings. Also visiting the center was the state’s secretary of aging, Brian Duke, who spoke about initiatives for the state’s older population. The relationship between Penn College’s nursing program and the STEP Office of Aging – which manages the senior center – was established nearly 20 years ago by Jane J. Benedict, associate professor of nursing, when she developed health-screening clinics for students. “Today, we continue to bring small groups of first-year … students to area STEP senior centers for health-screening clinics during each fall semester,” said Laurie A. Minium, instructor of nursing. “Our partnership with STEP is invaluable: The students are able to strengthen newly acquired nursing skills, while at the same time, the area’s older adults have the opportunity to receive free blood pressure and blood-glucose screenings. During the clinics, students interact with the seniors, staff and volunteers at the centers – focusing on proper skill technique, communication and client teaching.”
Pennsylvania College of Technology nursing instructor Joni J. Pyle recently completed her Doctor of Nursing Practice from Chatham University.
Pyle’s dissertation, titled “Increasing The Communication Self-Efficacy of Nurses: An Educational Intervention Using Motivational Interviewing,” was accepted for publication in Home Healthcare Nurse, a journal serving the educational and communication needs of home-care and hospice nurses. It is slated for publication in the journal’s February edition.
Penn State President Eric J. Barron traveled to Pennsylvania College of Technology on Tuesday, his first visit since assuming the presidency in May. In a timely trip to a main campus observing its 25th anniversary as a special mission affiliate of Penn State – as well as its yearlong Centennial celebration – Barron met with students, viewed three recent art installations, toured Madigan Library and student housing, explored the college’s role in the natural gas industry, and visited a variety of instructional labs. Joining Barron and his wife, Molly, on the tour were Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour; retired Penn College Board of Directors Chairman Robert E. Dunham and his wife, Maureen; Paul L. Starkey, vice president for academic affairs and provost; and police Chief Chris E. Miller. A reception in the Victorian House and dinner at Le Jeune Chef Restaurant, where the group was joined by state Sen. Gene Yaw, board chairman, followed.
Dulcey J. Messersmith, instructor of nursing at Pennsylvania College of Technology, recently received her Doctor of Nursing Practice from Chatham University.
Her dissertation was titled “Improving Pain in Older Adults Using a Focused Education Program With Practical Nursing Students.” Research for the dissertation was carried out at Penn College with advanced-level practical nursing students. Her goal is to improve pain-management outcomes in the older adult.
Sandra L. Richmond has been appointed director of nursing at Pennsylvania College of Technology.
As director, Richmond, who has been a full-time faculty member at Penn College since 2012, will oversee the college’s five nursing majors.
“Sandy Richmond brings an impressive combination of clinical, educational and administrative experiences to the leadership of the Nursing Program,” said Paul L. Starkey, vice president for academic affairs and provost. “She is passionate about her profession and respected by her peers.”
Awards for teaching were presented to three full-time faculty members at Pennsylvania College of Technology during commencement ceremonies held May 16-17 at the Community Arts Center, Williamsport.
As part of the Distinguished Teaching Awards program, Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour presented the Veronica M. Muzic Master Teacher Award to Dorothy M. Mathers, associate professor of medical-surgical nursing.
Excellence in Teaching Awards were presented to Peter B. Kruppenbacher, assistant professor of building construction technology, and Kevin R. Derr, professor of legal assistant studies.
The Distinguished Teaching Awards are presented to full-time faculty at Penn College who have been nominated by their students and colleagues for excellence in instructional performance. Since the program’s inception in 1982, awards have been presented to 95 honorees (30 Master Teacher and 65 Excellence in Teaching).
Chalmer Van Horn, a retired faculty member who taught engineering drafting for nearly three decades at Pennsylvania College of Technology and its two predecessor institutions, has endowed two scholarships at the college, including one that honors the memory of his wife of 56 years, Ruth Ann.
The Ruth Ann Van Horn Nursing Scholarship gives preference to full-time students who are enrolled in the practical nursing major, are prior recipients and are enrolled to earn their registered nursing or Bachelor of Science nursing degrees.
Ruth Ann Van Horn received a registered nursing degree from the Williamsport Hospital School of Nursing in 1953 and worked in the emergency room at Muncy Valley Hospital from 1956 until the late 1960s, when she left nursing due to ill health.
More than 900 Pennsylvania College of Technology students have petitioned to graduate at the completion of the Spring 2014 semester, and the college has scheduled three ceremonies May 16-17 for those who will march at commencement.
All of the ceremonies will be held at the Community Arts Center, Williamsport.
At 3 p.m. Friday, May 16, students in the School of Business & Hospitality and the School of Construction & Design Technologies will march. The student speaker will be Lewis Damase Robinson, of Bellefonte, who will be awarded a bachelor’s degree in culinary arts and systems and an associate degree in baking and pastry arts.
At 10 a.m. Saturday, May 17, a ceremony will be held for students in the School of Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies and the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies. The student speaker will be Benjamin Michael Schappell, of Mohrsville, who will receive a bachelor’s degree in computer aided product design.
At 1:30 p.m. May 17, a ceremony will be held for students in the School of Health Sciences and the School of Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications. The student speaker will be Ashley Grace Maietta, of Hughesville, who will receive an associate degree in nursing.
To facilitate collaboration among various health disciplines, the School of Health Sciences staged a series of mock health emergencies on campus this week. Approximately 195 students from eight of the school’s programs – Dental Hygiene, Health Information Technology, Paramedic, Physician Assistant, Nursing, Occupational Therapy Assistant, Radiography and Surgical Technology – participated in the event as health professionals, actors and observers. The event presented an opportunity for the students to develop relationships with other health care students and a better understanding of their role. More than 50 faculty and staff members facilitated the event across three days.
Photos by Cletus G. Waldman, clinical director, radiography; and Kim A. Speicher, dental hygiene instructor
From the Spring 2014 One College Avenue: Alumni of Wildcat athletic programs apply lessons from the field, court, course and mat to their post-Penn College lives. Archery champion Lindsay Fackler, ’10, applies focus in her nursing career, while golfer Matthew Haile, ’06, now head coach, applies lessons in confidence to challenges in information technology, and Adam Waigand, ’05, uses teamwork learned on the soccer field in his work as a construction supervisor.
Pennsylvania College of Technology and the Central Susquehanna LPN Career Center have entered into an agreement that awards up to 12 general education credits to graduates of the LPN program to continue their education.
The partnership, initiated by the WATCH Project, an income-based program that assists individuals interested in careers in nursing and EMS health professions, is administered by the Central Susquehanna Intermediate Unit and funded through a federal Health Professions Opportunity Grant.
On March 1, Pennsylvania College of Technology will serve as a host site for the Pennsylvania Dental Hygienists’ Association’s annual Sealant Saturday initiative.
The event is scheduled 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. A group of volunteers – consisting of local dental hygienists and dentists and Penn College dental hygiene students – will provide free oral screenings, sealants, fluoride treatments and education for children ages 7-15 in Penn College’s Dental Hygiene Clinic.
The School of Health Sciences hosted an Interdisciplinary Professional Event for students in select courses in its Physician Assistant, Nursing, Radiography, Occupational Therapy Assistant and Fitness Specialist programs Friday. About 150 students participated in two sessions that examined case studies and allowed students from the varying health care disciplines to discuss with one another their unique roles and interactions with the same patient.
Thirty nursing students at Pennsylvania College of Technology took the topic of community health literally when they put in time at the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.
The students are enrolled in a course called Community Health Nursing. For one of the course’s clinical rotations, the students became familiar with and volunteered at the food bank’s Williamsport Warehouse, explained course instructor Sandra L. Richmond.
At the warehouse, students packed fresh-express items, which included fresh fruits and vegetables, and power sacks for school-aged students in need of food for the weekend. They also repacked rice and cereal for redistribution by other northcentral Pennsylvania agencies.