News about College Transitions

Penn College Freshmen Bring National FBLA Ranking

Penn College students Joseph C. Lusk (left), of Linden, and Austin J. Way, of Jersey Shore, were part of a three-person team from Jersey Shore Area Senior High School taking second place in a network design competition held at the 2016 Future Business Leaders of America National Leadership Conference.

Two freshmen students at Pennsylvania College of Technology capped their high-school careers in impressive fashion. They earned a second-place showing at the 2016 Future Business Leaders of America National Leadership Conference in Atlanta.

Joseph C. Lusk, of Linden, and Austin J. Way, of Jersey Shore, were part of a three-person team from Jersey Shore Area Senior High School in FBLA’s network design competition, one of 65 business-related events.

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Girls Have Fun With Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Technology

A participant in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s SMART Girls summer camp paints the building that will house her team’s “She Rocks: From Print to Air,” one of 10 new businesses established for the town of “Dreamville.” The three-girl team developed a business plan for the town’s media center (including radio and television stations and a recording studio), designed and printed a building, and produced 3-D printed headphones.

A recent summer camp at Pennsylvania College of Technology saw high school girls dreaming up their own businesses while learning the science behind digital fabrication.

Thirty-five teens recently attended SMART Girls at Penn College. The camp – which stands for Science and Math in Real-world Technologies – was supported in part by a $12,650 grant from the Central Pennsylvania Workforce Development Corp.

During the five-day camp, the girls formed 10 teams, each of which was assigned a type of business to fulfill the needs of “Dreamville, USA,” residents. Businesses ranged from tech companies to a health care provider, and from an arts boutique to television and radio stations.

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Students Earn Industry Certification

For the second consecutive year, more than 50 Pennsylvania College of Technology students proved their computer-aided design prowess by passing a prominent industry certification test.

The students successfully completed the Certified SolidWorks Associate exam. SolidWorks is a 3-D modeling, computer-aided software program employed by more than 3 million product designers and engineers worldwide. It is one of several 3-D modeling software applications used by students enrolled in Penn College’s engineering design technology and industrial design bachelor-degree majors and the engineering CAD technology associate degree.

“We are so proud of the students,” said Katherine A. Walker, assistant professor and department head of engineering design technology. “Their performance on the exam reflects not only their hard work in the classroom, but their sincere dedication to the field. The certification will certainly help them stand out in the job market upon graduation.”

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PPL Gifts to Penn College Bring STEM Activities to High Schoolers

Courtesy of a donation by PPL, participants in Penn College’s SMART Girls summer camp will have access to the Carnegie Science Center’s Mobile Fab Lab, which is equipped with 3-D printers, laser and vinyl cutters, a Shop Bot and more. (Photo provided)

PPL is providing financial support for Pennsylvania College of Technology programs designed to provide educational experience in science, math, engineering and technology to high school students.

The gifts, totaling $5,500, will support a summer camp for high school girls and a program that offers Penn College courses in Pennsylvania high schools.

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College Preps Dual-Enrollment Partners for Coming Year

Pat Scheib, academic skills specialist in the Academic Success Center, works with secondary teachers during her morning sessions; she focused on the choices of successful students and skills that teachers can use to motivate struggling students.

Admissions representatives Sarah R. Shott, Salvatore Vitko, Emily A. Weaver, Claire Z. Biggs (coordinator of admissions and enrollment event services) and Sean M. Stout introduce themselves, explain their territories and academic school focuses, and invite teachers to contact them for visits or for any information they may need about Penn College. Representatives also escorted groups of teachers to their academic program areas.

Eric Nagy, an English teacher at Jersey Shore Area High School, prepares to meet with Bruce A. Wehler, assistant professor of English composition, to organize and plan ENL111 through the Penn College NOW program.

On May 17-18, the College Transitions Office hosted the 135 secondary teachers who will teach Penn College NOW courses to their high school students in 2016-17. The teachers spent the morning attending sessions on “Academic Resources for Students and Teachers,” led by Monica A. McCarty, the college’s dual enrollment specialist, and librarian Helen L. Yoas; and “Instructional Strategies to Nurture Student Learning and Motivation,” taught by Pat Scheib, academic skills specialist in Penn College’s Academic Success Center. The secondary teachers spent the afternoon meeting in groups with their Penn College faculty liaisons about the courses they’ll teach next school year. Thirty-eight Penn College faculty members serve as liaisons for the program. “Secondary teachers in attendance came from each of our 40 partners across the state and teach Penn College NOW courses connected with every academic school on campus,” said McCarty, who coordinated and hosted the event with colleagues Brigette M. Cleary, secretary to academic services and college transitions, and Laura M. Machak, college transitions specialist. The professional development is a requirement of the college’s accreditation through the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships. Penn College NOW is one of only two accredited dual-enrollment programs in Pennsylvania.
Photos by Tia G. La, student photographer

Hands-On Visit Lets Middle-Schoolers Jump-Start Career Aspirations

Under the supervision of Scott A. Geist (background), director of surgical technology, students explore the hands-on world of the operating room.

More than 1,040 students and chaperones from seven area middle schools visited Tuesday, exploring a wide variety of technical careers through hands-on activities, tours of facilities, and discussions with Penn College students and faculty. Career Day, organized by the College Transitions Office is held each spring and fall; the next program, for students in ninth through 12th grade, will be held Oct. 13.

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K-12 Educators Invited to May 3 Public Media Conference

History provides clues for solving present-day challenges. Math explains the mystery behind technology. Communication helps individuals work together to build rich and rewarding lives. Incorporating practical experiences and career exploration into lesson planning can help students apply basic theories and find areas of interest that could lead to future career interests.

Teachers, guidance counselors, administrators and home-schooling parents in Northeast Pennsylvania and the Central Susquehanna Valley are invited to take part in “Working Class: Connecting Classrooms & Careers” on Tuesday, May 3, from 9-11 a.m., at WVIA Public Media Studios in Pittston.

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Science Festival Opens Fifth-Graders’ Eyes to Wondrous Possibilities

The Penn College student chapter of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers displays condensor coils in the Field House.

About 1,500 fifth-grade students from 11 school districts in Lycoming and surrounding counties attended Thursday’s Science Festival at Penn College. Co-hosted by College Transitions and the Williamsport/Lycoming Chamber of Commerce, the event offered youngsters a peek into math- and science-related career opportunities at a variety of campus locations throughout the day. Vendor exhibits continued for the public during the evening hours, filling the Field House with inquisitive elementary and middle school students and their families.

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Last updated February 19, 2016 | Posted in College Transitions, Events | This gallery contains 9 photos. | Tagged as |

First National Bank Donates to Programs That Benefit High-Schoolers

First National Bank’s Peter Bower (left), senior vice president and commercial banking team leader, and Chris Sullivan, vice president and market manager, deliver a $10,000 donation to Penn College’s Elizabeth A. Biddle, director of corporate relations. The contribution will support the college’s SMART Girls and Penn College NOW programs for high school students.

First National Bank recently donated $10,000 to two innovative Pennsylvania College of Technology initiatives.

FNB’s Peter Bower, senior vice president and commercial banking team leader, and Chris Sullivan, vice president and market manager, delivered the gift to the college. The contribution was made through Pennsylvania’s Educational Improvement Tax Credit program in support of the college’s SMART Girls and Penn College NOW programs.

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Science Festival to Bring Hands-On Activities to Local Families

Edward J. Almasy, assistant professor of electronics, explores statistical principles with visitors to a previous Science Festival at Penn College. The community is invited to the fifth annual event – geared for elementary and middle school students and their families – on Feb. 18 in the college’s Field House.

On Feb. 18, local families are invited to the Field House at Pennsylvania College of Technology to explore the wonders of science, technology, engineering and math through a variety of interesting and engaging activities.

The fifth annual Science Festival is scheduled from 5-8 p.m. and is sponsored by the college and the Williamsport/Lycoming Chamber of Commerce.

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Workshop for Teachers Emphasizes Creative Side of STEM

Debra Lindner and David Lentz, both technology teachers at Sullivan County High School, assemble a rubber-band powered glider as they practice hands-on lessons they can use in their classes to help students practice creative problem solving and prepare them for potential careers in science, technology, engineering and math fields. The free STEM curriculum was developed and demonstrated by the National Integrated Cyber Education Research Center; a workshop on the curriculum was offered at Penn College by the college and BLaST Intermediate Unit 17.

Learning looked a lot like play when more than 90 middle school educators from across Pennsylvania – and a few from other states – convened at Pennsylvania College of Technology to sit on the learning end of hands-on lessons that they can take back to school to help engage their students in science, technology, engineering and math topics.

According to a 2012 report by the President’s Council of Advisors on Science & Technology, economic projections point to a need for approximately 1 million more STEM professionals than the U.S. will produce at the current rate over the next decade if the country is to retain its historical pre-eminence in science and technology.

“If we are truly preparing students at both the secondary and postsecondary levels, we are preparing them for 21st-century jobs,” said Paul R. Watson, Penn College’s dean of academic services and college transitions. “Twenty-first century jobs primarily focus on STEM.”

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Career-Readiness Conference Asks – and Answers – ‘Have You Ever?’

Paul R. Watson II, dean of academic services and college transitions, addresses a filled Mountain Laurel Room in the Thompson Professional Development Center.

Chef Richard J. McGlynn III, head cook in the college’s Le Jeune Chef Restaurant, leads a “Have you ever …” session. His topic: “Have you ever prepared food tableside?”

Kenneth E. Welker, HVAC technology lecturer, guides a tour of heating, ventilation and air-conditioning labs. It was one of 11 concurrent tours of campus labs.

In his “Have you ever …” hands-on session, Craig A. Mliler, instructor of engineering design technology, guides educators in designing a roller coaster.

Educators from Southern Columbia Area and Susquehanna Township school districts get a hands-on lesson in mold-making in the industrial and human factors design lab.

More than 80 school counselors and other educators attended a College & Career Readiness Conference at Penn College on Nov. 20, where they learned about the emerging field of mechatronics, toured the college’s programs, participated in hands-on learning activities, and gained insight that they can use as they guide students in making career and college decisions. The event is coordinated once each semester by the College Transitions Office.

Penn College NOW Partners Attend Biannual Brainstorming

Paul R. Watson, dean of academic services and college transitions, welcomes Penn College NOW partners.

Penn College chemistry faculty members, Amy P. Toole and Kelly B. Butzler, both assistant professors, offer their perspective on how the college’s Fundamentals of Chemistry course might best be offered in high schools.

Penn College’s College Transitions staff, who administer the Penn College NOW dual-enrollment program for high school students, held a twice-yearly meeting Wednesday with its school district partners. During fall meetings, Penn College personnel hear from the secondary schools that participate in Penn College NOW how the program is working and present changes that may be on the horizon. While here, secondary representatives choose the Penn College courses they’ll offer to their students in the following academic year. Twenty-five secondary schools were represented at Wednesday’s meeting.

SMART Money’s on Problem-Solvers at Innovative Summer Camp

A participant checks progress on a 3-D printed elephant toy.

A member of the business Sirens of Sound explains to mentors a smartphone speaker developed by her company during the Wildcat Den Showcase.

Cellphone kickstands and charms were among team Copy, Paste, Print’s products.

A participant shows her team’s solution to a broken camera tripod.

A team shows off samples of 3-D printed toys, part of its week’s work.

Penn College’s annual SMART Girls summer camp attracted 34 high schoolers from across Pennsylvania, some with a strong interest in science, math, engineering or technology, and others just beginning to explore those options. During the four-day camp, the girls used additive manufacturing to solve problems – like creating replacement parts for broken consumer products and designing connectors to build structures out of plastic straws. They also used their newly honed computer-aided design and 3-D printing skills to develop a product line, supported by a business plan, resume and trade-show booth. All were used to pitch “investors,” the camp’s mentors, during the “Wildcat Den Showcase,” a SMART Girls take on television’s “Shark Tank.” SMART Girls – Science and Math Applications in Real-World Technologies for Girls – was implemented by Penn College to reverse the trend of girls to shy away from math and science courses and the rewarding, family-sustaining careers that use those skills. The camp, which also included career interest assessments and company tours, was facilitated by the college’s Outreach for K-12 Office. Mentors were Eric K. Albert, associate professor of machine tool technology/automated manufacturing at Penn College; Tom Gill, a science teacher at Central Columbia High School; Christina L. Herman, director of student services and career development for Loyalsock Township School District; and Alice S. Justice, school counselor at Central Columbia Middle School. Camp director was Tanya Berfield, project and data reporting technician in Outreach for K-12.

Penn College Students Earn Industry Certifications

Pennsylvania College of Technology students representing seven different majors recently proved their mastery of computer aided drafting and design software programs by passing certification exams.

Fifty-two students successfully completed the Certified SolidWorks Associate exam and one student earned Autodesk Inventor Professional certification. SolidWorks and Autodesk Inventor are industry-standard 3-D parametric software programs used primarily within the engineering drafting and design profession.

“Two years ago, we completely revised our curriculum to closely align with current industry standards and technology,” said J.D. Mather, assistant professor of engineering design technology. “Our enrollment in the engineering design program has substantially increased since these changes were made. This year, we more than doubled the number of students who successfully completed the exams. I am very pleased with the increase in certified users. The certification is an external validation that our curriculum is meeting industry standards.”

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