News about Students

‘Links’ Eager to Help New Students Greet Their Future

This summer's Links and Madigan Library: two sources of valuable information for Penn College students.

Front row (from left): Nina L. Walk, of Bellefonte, graphic design; Lindsey A. King, Hanover, pre-applied health studies: occupational therapy assistant concentration; Alexandra D. Petrizzi, Langhorne, dental hygiene: health policy & administration concentration; David A. Gadalla, Carlisle, aviation maintenance technology; Lauren J. Crouse, Turbotville, applied human services; Alexis J. Medero, Levittown, civil engineering technology. Back row (from left): Caleb E. Cartmell, Honesdale, automotive technology management: automotive technology concentration; Mitchell J. Berninger, Williamsport, web and interactive media; Everett B. Appleby, Wilkes-Barre, building science and sustainable design: building construction technology concentration; Grant A. McCauley, Muncy, emergency management technology; Alexander R. Wetzel, Sunbury, industrial design; Duncan Rodriguez, Kunkletown, nursing.

The Summer 2016 Connections Links are ready to welcome guests to campus for Penn College’s orientation program starting Monday and running through July 21. Six two-day sessions (for first-year enrollees) and two one-day sessions (for adult learners and transfers) will prepare students and their families for the new experiences and challenges of college life. Offering their friendly faces at those sessions are 12 Connections Links, seasoned and knowledgeable student leaders ready to facilitate networking and answer a wide range of questions.

Grads Keep Cool, Maintain Public Safety in Crises

The School of Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications’ emergency management technology major is the focus of a new video on Penn College’s YouTube channel. The four-year degree prepares graduates for careers ranging from disaster planning specialist to public health preparedness coordinator through a comprehensive understanding of the phases of emergency management.

Manufacturing Student Among Competitors on ABC’s ‘BattleBots’

Team Hammertime includes Penn College student Alexander J. Horne (far left).

A student in Penn College’s manufacturing engineering technology major will compete on ABC’s “BattleBots” when the popular series begins its second season at 8 p.m. Thursday. Alexander J. Horne, of West Chester, co-designed and built the 250-pound robot – named SubZero – that will face off for Team Hammertime in the show’s opening round. An article about Horne (and his longtime fascination with bot-building) was published in a recent edition of his hometown paper, the Daily Local News.

College Tops Regional List of Red Cross Bloodmobile Sites

Red Cross volunteers staff a donor check-in table outside Penn's Inn ...

... where faculty/staff and students contributed a region-topping number of pints last year.

The American Red Cross recently ran the numbers of its Top 10 blood-collection locations in Northeastern Pennsylvania … and Penn College was at the head of the list for 2015.  A total of 799 units was donated on campus last year; Bloomsburg and Lock Haven universities were second and third at 695 and 534 pints, respectively. In a related report, College Health Services said 49 units – with the potential to save 147 lives – were collected during a June 15 mini-visit to the Bush Campus Center. Online appointments are being accepted for the next drive at Penn College, set for noon-6 p.m. Sept. 7-8.

‘Senior Visit Day’ Opens 12th-Graders’ Eyes to Campus Opportunities

Mitchell J. Berninger and Lauren J. Crouse, Lead Links in the college's Connections orientation program, point the way to an illuminating day!

Levon A. Whitmyer, instructor of building construction technology, gives families a glimpse into class and career dynamics.

Claire Z. Biggs, coordinator of admissions/enrollment services, shares a laugh with a daughter and mother.

Scott A. Geist (far left), director of surgical technology, escorts guests along the campus mall on a gorgeous day.

Connections Link Duncan Rodriguez welcomes visitors to the Klump Academic Center for the day’s kickoff talk.

Penn College held the first of three Senior Visit Days on Friday, welcoming students heading into their final year of high school. After a welcome session with President Davie Jane Gilmour, the visitors heard academic presentations and toured labs, got an overview of financial aid and college life, took a peek at on-campus housing, lunched in the Keystone Dining Room, and had access to Admissions Office representatives to resolve all of their last-minute questions. Additional Senior Visit Days are set for July 16 and 29; campus tours are also available at 2:30 p.m. daily, Monday through Thursday.

Baja Team Posts Two Top-Five Finishes in Rochester

A core group of seven manufacturing students from Penn College, bolstered by recent graduates, logged an impressive showing among 100 teams at this past weekend’s Baja SAE Rochester: finishing second in suspension/traction and fifth in the endurance race. “I could not have been happier or more proud of these guys,” said adviser John G. Upcraft, instructor of automated manufacturing and machining. “It was as good as our car was going to do at that track with those competitors.” The Toyota Suspension Award carries a trophy and $500 check, while the 47-lap, fifth-place performance in endurance – up from the vehicle’s start in the No. 59 position – came against such national heavyweights as Michigan, Cornell and Iowa universities. Overall team results are expected within the week. Watch PCToday for more about the June 9-12 event, held on the Rochester Institute of Technology campus and at the Hogback Hill Motocross Track in Palmyra, New York.

Students’ Civic Contribution Noted in Newscast

Student builders acknowledged

A ribbon rests atop a pillar constructed by Penn College masonry students. (Photo by Carol A. Lugg, assistant dean of construction and design technologies)

Penn College’s involvement in construction of the Lycoming County Sensory Garden is noted in a Newswatch 16 piece previewing this weekend’s ribbon-cutting at the Fairfield Township facility. In addition to footage of a sign acknowledging The School of Construction & Design Technologies’ contribution, Kristina Papa’s segment features Christina Dorward, a master gardener and chair of the Sensory Garden Committee, and her husband, Dennis, associate professor of construction management/building construction work at the college.

Future Bakers, Set Your Mind on 1 Degree for 60 Seconds

A “Your Class in 60 Seconds” video added to the Penn College YouTube channel visits the Advanced Baking & Pastry Operations class, which instills such principles including menu planning, creating and selling products and bakery operation. From conception to final patisserie sale, students receive a tremendous hands-on education throughout the course.  “You’ll come to class with your plans for the day and your strong work ethic,” says Victoria L. Kostecki, who holds Penn College degrees in baking and pastry arts (2014) and applied management (2016). “Writing the menu is a combination of baking and pastry methodology, dynamic communication skills and teamwork. Once the menu has been developed, you work to create the items you plan to sell.”

Diligently Restored, Dazzlingly Arrayed

Automobiles fill the Penn College landscape in this view to the northeast from atop the Breuder Advanced Technology & Health Sciences Center.

Pennsylvania College of Technology provided a stunning backdrop for the Antique Automobile Club of America’s Grand National Meet from Thursday through Saturday, an exciting and extraordinary event that was the largest ever held by the organization. A joint project of the AACA Susquehannock Region and the Penn College Classic Cruisers student group, the gathering attracted more than 600 cars, trucks and motorcycles and thousands of participants and spectators. Activities for registrants and their families included tours of campus and local attractions, informative sessions in instructional labs, and social get-togethers … and two free events were open to the community: Friday’s keynote address by Lyn St. James in the Field House and Saturday’s car show – breathtakingly featuring 40 to 50 million dollars’ worth of automobiles – along the campus mall. A motivational speaker, St. James is a seven-time Indianapolis 500 competitor, the Indy’s first female Rookie of the Year and one of the “Top 100 Female Athletes of the Century” as chosen by Sports Illustrated. In addition to the photo gallery that follows, the memorable event is captured in a video on the college’s YouTube channel:

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European Trip Blends Sustainability, Antiquity

Pride among the ruins

Enjoying a cross-cultural experience

Thirty-nine students from the ACH 270 (European Sustainable Building, Historical Architecture and Art) class joined two faculty members on a recent nine-day, four-city educational tour of Italy. The students – accompanied on their May 18-26 adventure by Naim N. Jabbour, assistant professor of architectural technology, and Daniel L. Brooks, instructor of architectural technology – visited Venice, Vicenza, Florence and Rome. “As an HVAC graduate, I enjoyed the opportunity to see how another culture views heating and cooling,” said Bradley G. Willis, who earned a bachelor’s degree in heating, ventilation and air conditioning design in May. “For example, while in Italy, I learned cooling set points of 78-80 (degrees Fahrenheit) are acceptable where the U.S. has a preference for the 70-72F range. This experience allowed me have a broader view of the advancement of HVAC systems, as well as cultural differences that affect our global industry.” Another new alumnus, Timothy S. Shook, offered a similar endorsement of the study-abroad program. “Being able to see the ancient buildings in person, after studying them at Penn College, created an unforgettable experience for me,” said the graduate in building science and sustainable design: architectural technology concentration. “An experience including learning, visualizing and fun that will stay with me forever.”
Photos by Willis and Jabbour

The Writing on the Wall

Words to live by

A closeup of students' craft

A handcrafted addition to a hallway in Penn College’s School of Construction & Design Technologies – espousing “honesty,” “integrity” and “respect” – shows off students’ skills while offering bywords for the campus community. From a seed planted with faculty last fall by Marc E. Bridgens, dean of the school, the idea grew into a spring project for Peter Kruppenbacher’s CCM 440 (Woodworking: Art, Craft and Design) classes. “We worked with Rob Wozniak in the architecture area to find a font that would work,” the assistant professor of building construction technology said, “and he printed out full-size templates for us to use as patterns.” Two sections of Kruppenbacher’s class worked on the letters off and on between other projects throughout the semester, helping to lay out, cut, prepare and install the letters on a wall near the carpentry labs in the Carl Building Technologies Center.

Ten First-Year Students Awarded President’s Scholarships

Ten students beginning their postsecondary education at Pennsylvania College of Technology this fall have each been awarded $3,000 annual President’s Scholarships.

High school seniors are invited to apply for a President’s Scholarship if they are enrolling as full-time Penn College students, have a class rank within the top 10 percent and meet established SAT requirements.

“You are a member of a very select group of new students who have demonstrated the ability to achieve a superior academic record, while simultaneously contributing generously of your time and talents in your high school and community in meaningful ways,” Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour said in notifying each of the recipients. “This scholarship program was designed to recognize extraordinarily talented individuals, like you, who appreciate that learning takes place both inside and outside of the classroom. We know that the opportunities available to you at Penn College will enable you to continue to learn, grow and develop as a responsible member of society, and we are excited to welcome a student of your caliber.”

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Student Redesigns Surgical Instrument

Penn College’s Elizabeth A. Snedeker is on her way to becoming a biomedical engineer. The industrial design major devoted her senior project to redesigning a common, yet troublesome surgical instrument used for partial-knee replacements. Her design has impressed a prominent orthopedic surgeon, as well as the maker of the current extractor tool. “It was astounding to know that I had this opportunity and maybe I could do something with it,” said Snedeker, who graduated May 14 with a bachelor’s degree in industrial and human factors design. “Realistically, what I would like to do at the end of this is to have my design and have surgeons using my tool in order to make it more effective and efficient.”

Spring 2016 Dean’s List Compiled

The dean’s list for the Spring 2016 semester at Pennsylvania College of Technology has been issued.

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Yucatan Travelers Share Study-Abroad Experiences

A large crowd gathers to hear the presentations. In the background, D. Robert Cooley (light blue shirt), assistant professor of anthropology/environmental science, leads the discussion.

Intrepid travelers (from left): Erik G. Knecht, of Cranesville; Leo J. Ravina, of Hazleton; Brendon J. Dibble, of Douglassville; Anthony V. Rode, of Palm Coast, Fla.; and Curtis R. Gehman, of Lock Haven.

Dibble discusses his pit-fired ceramics, an attempt he made following the trip to recreate ancient Maya ceramics.

Knecht shares stories from the voyage.

Vander Vere listens to his students’ presentations.

Among the engaging end-of-semester activities that occurred across campus in recent weeks were presentations by students in MTH 156 (Mathematics in Non-European Cultures). Gathering in the Bush Campus Center TV Lounge, the students offered insights into their study-abroad adventures in Mexico earlier this year. The unique course blends mathematics, anthropology and cultural adventures, and is led by D. Robert Cooley, assistant professor of anthropology/environmental science, and Curt E. Vander Vere, assistant professor of mathematics. This year’s student group represented a diverse range of majors including manufacturing and engineering technology, industrial and human factors design, studio arts, construction management, and pre-physician assistant. The Penn College class traveled to the Yucatan peninsula, specifically the Mexican states of Yucatan and Campeche. This year’s outing marked the fifth time Cooley and Vander Vere have guided students in the exploration of ancient Maya civilization.
Photos by Tia G. La, student photographer

A previous MTH 156 travel experience was showcased in this video on the college YouTube channel: