News about Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies

Student-Edited Video Acquaints Car Enthusiasts With ‘Grand National’ Venue

The unique opportunities at Penn College – one of the nation’s oldest continuous automotive programs, one of the largest educational labs for collision repair and one of the few vintage restoration degree programs on the East Coast – are promoted in a video invitation to the Antique Automobile Club of America’s 2016 Grand National Meet to be hosted on main campus next spring. Presented by the AACA’s Susquehannock Region in association with the Penn College Classic Cruiser Chapter, the high-profile event will be held June 3-5. The five-minute production, which has been added to the Penn College YouTube channel,  was edited by Kashiki E. Harrison, of Williamsport, a General Studies major and student video production assistant in Public Relations & Marketing.

Automotive Faculty Member Named Honorary Crew Member

Chris J. Holley (left) and Tony Schumacher

An eye-catching Army display draws interest from the race-day crowd.

An automotive faculty member represented Penn College as a guest of the Army and Don Schumacher Racing during Saturday’s “Army Day at the Races” during the Keystone Nationals held at Maple Grove Raceway just outside Reading. Assistant professor Chris J. Holley was able to interact with several Army officers and soldiers; he also met Mike Lewis, vice president of DSR, and Tony Schumacher, Don’s son and a driver of one of the group’s eight nitro-burning drag cars. Those eight teams have accumulated more than 250 wins and close to 20 championships over the years, and Tony Schumacher has won the Top Fuel championship eight times during the 15 years he has been sponsored by the Army. In addition to being a guest and a recognized Army “center of influence” – someone who meets with a target audience that includes educated young men and women – Holley was selected as a ceremonial crew member for the Army team for the day. “That was quite an honor,” he said.
Photos provided

Industry Leader Extends Cooperative Relationship With Penn College

Jeff Klingman (fifth from right), Axalta territory sales manager, joins Penn College collision repair instructor Loren R. Bruckhart (center); Brett A. Reasner (right), dean of transportation and natural resources technologies; and students in the College Avenue Labs paint laboratory. Bruckhart is holding an Axalta-donated digital spectrophotometer, a handheld color-matching device.

Axalta Coating Systems, a global supplier of liquid and powder coatings to the transportation and industrial sectors, has extended its sponsorship of the collision repair technology and automotive restoration technology programs at Pennsylvania College of Technology for four years.

A key supporter of the majors since they moved into College Avenue Labs in 2002, Axalta will continue to provide products for instructional use, assistance with curriculum development and training of collision repair faculty as a way to build brand awareness and expertise for their products with Penn College students.

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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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Classic Vehicles, Curiosity Bring Chevy Club to Campus

The group peeks inside the Duesenberg, on loan from the William E. Swigart Jr. Automobile Museum in Huntingdon for light service work and detailing.

Club member Dave Cavagnaro discusses his four-door 1962 Chevrolet Impala sedan with a student.

Justin W. Beishline (background) and Walter V. Gower, assistant deans of transportation and natural resources technologies, keep the chow line moving.

Collision repair instructor Roy H. Klinger (far left) talks about the diagnostic work being performed on the Packard to assess whether a full restoration is warranted.

Sean M. Hunter, an applied management major from Livington, New Jersey, shows off a work-in-progress in the paint lab: a 1935 Rolls-Royce 20/25 Saloon.

More than 20 members of the Vintage Chevrolet Club of America Inc. traveled to Penn College in a dozen cars Friday, enjoying a tour of several laboratories in the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies and meeting with students  – both instructionally and informally. Of particular interest was the automotive restoration lab, where the visitors saw the caliber of the museum pieces and collectibles entrusted to students: a 1929 Duesenberg, a 1947 Packard and a 1932 Buick, among them. Dave Cavagnaro, of Blairstown, New Jersey, who was taken by the students’ demeanor when he met them at Charlotte and Philadelphia, said he continued to be “superimpressed” after seeing them on campus. The members’ cars, combined with a display of student- and faculty-owned vehicles, coincided with a fall tradition: a hot dog roast with the school administration at the grill.

State Legislator Gets to Know Penn College During Campus Visit

Sens. Vogel (center) and Yaw (right) talk with David R. Cotner, dean of industrial, computing and engineering technologies, in the college's welding laboratory.

Brass candlesticks pique the lawmakers' interest during a stop in the automated manufacturing lab.

Vogel gets behind the wheel of a 1929 Duesenberg Model J Victoria, powered by a Lycoming engine and being restored by Penn College students – including Ian M. Bachleda, of Schaefferstown – for the William E. Swigart Jr. Automobile Museum in Huntingdon.

State Sen. Elder Vogel Jr., whose 47th District encompasses Lawrence County and parts of Beaver and Butler counties, got acquainted with Penn College during a tour of main campus Wednesday afternoon. A legislator since 2009, Vogel chairs the Agriculture & Rural Affairs Committee, and is a member of the Appropriations, Banking & Insurance, Communications & Technology, Environmental Resources & Energy, Local Government, and Majority Policy committees. Accompanied by state Sen. Gene Yaw (chairman of the college’s board of directors) and members of the administration, among others, Vogel got a close look at instructional areas for welding, automated manufacturing, collision repair, automotive restoration, and mechatronics. He also visited a natural gas wellhead used by ShaleNET U.S. in the Center for Business & Workforce Development.

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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Forest Technology Students to Use Inventory App on Mobile Devices

Penn College forest technology majors Alexa L. Labesky, of Warren, and Brett A. Forney, of Millersburg, use an enhanced iPad for data collection in the woodland laboratory at the college’s Schneebeli Earth Science Center.

Members of the forest technology faculty at Pennsylvania College of Technology have acquired five iPad Minis and, in collaboration with Information Technology Services, loaded them with forestry-specific programming from Forest Metrix in Vermont.

In addition to use on the iPads, the Forest Metrix software can be used by students on their own iPads or iPhones at no extra charge while enrolled in the major. Penn College is the only forestry program in Pennsylvania – and one of only two in the eastern United States – to use the new technology in the classroom and in the forest.

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College’s Restoration Major in Statewide Spotlight

Penn College’s unique automotive restoration technology major is featured in Keystone Edge, an online magazine of positive news about companies and communities designed to encourage young talented people that Pennsylvania is the best place to invent their future. The piece was written by Elise Vider, the publication’s innovation and jobs news editor, with input from Brett A. Reasner, the college’s dean of transportation and natural resources technologies.

Alumnus-Maintained Blimp Makes Big Splash During Little League

Students exit the gondola after their access to a high-profile aircraft.

Penn College alumnus brings DirecTV blimp to Energy Aviation, near the Lumley Aviation Center.

Wearing his pride

The crowd assembling around the airship lends a sense of proportion.

Penn College aviation students were invited by 1997 aviation technology alumnus James Weed to visit the DirecTV blimp, which he maintains. The students were able to board the gondola to get a close look at the instruments and controls. The blimp is equipped with two 180-horsepower Lycoming engines and a high-definition camera. Operated by the Van Wagner Airship Group, the blimp is in town to provide aerial television coverage of the Little League Baseball World Series.
Photos by Thomas D. Inman, associate professor of avionics

Penn College Names New Assistant Dean for Academic School

Justin W. Beishline

Justin W. Beishline has been named assistant dean for the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

Beishline, who grew up in Benton and resides in Millville, had been an instructor of diesel equipment technology at the college since the Fall 2008 semester.

“Justin will be an excellent addition to the leadership team in Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies,” said Paul L. Starkey, vice president for academic affairs/provost. “He has been an excellent teacher for a number of years and is noted for his commitment to his students. He brings creativity and a great work ethic to this new role.”

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Hands-On Wiring Project Emblematic of Program’s Civic Connections

Checking out a fleet of vintage cars ...

... including an award-winning, student-restored 1970 Chevelle SS.

The instructor lends a hand to a group supervised by YMCA Program DIrector Bryce Weaver (center).

Success and satisfaction

Displaying a patriotic eagle, one of the student projects in the Auto Graphics course

Young men and women from the Williamsport YMCA’s F.I.R.S.T. (Fostering Individuality, Respect, Success and Teamwork) Program toured Penn College’s collision repair lab Wednesday as part of a five-week summer workshop series designed for community outreach. The once-weekly activities, sponsored by Lycoming United Way, are spearheaded by Katrina A. Sinclair, part-time member of the college’s history faculty. Automotive instructor Eric D. Pruden walked the group through the restoration, paint and collision repair labs before assigning them hands-on activities involving series and parallel circuits.

NYC Kids Get ‘Fresh’ Taste of Postsecondary Possibilities

In a lab full of priceless automobiles being restored by Penn College students, the visitors are allowed several supervised violations of the "look, but don't touch" rule. The youngsters take turns cranking a Ford Model T coil tester, generating enough voltage to illuminate a small light bulb.

A group of New York City youngsters, finishing a seven-day visit to Williamsport arranged through the Fresh Air Foundation, this week tasted the uniquely amazing opportunities of a Penn College degree. A rewarding experience for both the youngsters and their local host families, Fresh Air gives urban boys and girls a peek into life outside the city, and enticed Monday’s group with a higher-education option they might have thought was well beyond their reach. In an age-appropriate agenda fashioned by admissions representative Emily A. Weaver, the kids started their day with a brief video showcasing three Penn College students. “They were having fun while working toward their goals,” one boy noted, surprised that college isn’t all studious drudgery. A campus tour followed, then lunch in the Keystone Dining Room. The guests also visited the automotive restoration/collision repair and welding labs before burning off excess steam on the basketball court. The verdict? Unqualified success … and the wide-eyed promise by some to enroll as students within the decade.

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Ransome CAT Donates Diesel Engine to Penn College

Ransome's Ron Garber secures diesel engine for ESC

A Caterpillar C6.6 diesel engine, which became available after it was replaced under warranty by the dealership, has been donated by Ransome CAT for use by students at Penn College’s Schneebeli Earth science Center. “Since I know the college is always looking for recent engines for instructional purposes, we made the call to Dr. (Mary A.) Sullivan (ESC executive director and assistant dean of the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies) and arrangements were made for the pickup of the engine,” said Ron Garber, Ransome’s fluids lab general manager and Whitehall/Fleetwood regional manager. “We had no further cost in the item and it made sense to donate it to Penn College. All dealers in the program keep an eye out for such items … and make them available whenever we can.”
Photo by Ken J. Bashista, laboratory technician for diesel equipment technology

Alumnus Among Top Competitors in Employer’s Skills-Testing

Under the critical eye of a judge and his clipboard, Brian P. Weidner competes ...

... in a series of skills tests ...

... that pitted him against other top-performing Ryder technicians.

After only 20 months on the job, Brian P. Weidner – a 2011 diesel technology graduate working as a Tech 3 for Ryder Systems Inc. – tested his way into the third level of his employer’s prestigious Top Tech Competition. During the awards ceremony, the alumnus from Quakertown said, his mentor cited Weidner’s educational background at his technical high school and his degree from Penn College.
Photos provided