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Penn College News

Horticulture Grads Put Experience to Use as ‘Field Day’ Judges

Horticulture alumni returning to Penn College as Field Day judges (from left): Tyler J. Fatzinger (2014), Cory M. Ferreri ('12), Nicholas B. Cramer  ('08), Melissa D. Berrier-Cramer  ('08), Jeremy L. Thorne  ('13), Nicholas D. Foreman  ('14), and Joseph D. Plummer  ('97).

Horticulture alumni returning to Penn College as Field Day judges (from left): Tyler J. Fatzinger (2014), Cory M. Ferreri (’12), Nicholas B. Cramer (’08), Melissa D. Berrier-Cramer (’08), Jeremy L. Thorne (’13), Nicholas D. Foreman (’14), and Joseph D. Plummer (’97).

Students in the hardscape competition prepare the base for brick pavers.

Students in the hardscape competition prepare the base for brick pavers.

High school students create floral designs for the judges.

High school students create floral designs for the judges.

Alumnus Joseph D. Plummer (center) joins current students in working with high school competitors in the Plant ID contest.

Alumnus Joseph D. Plummer (center) joins current students in working with high school competitors in the Plant ID contest.

A student "sells" his landscape design to judges Nicholas B. Cramer and Melissa D. Berrier-Cramer.

A student “sells” his landscape design to judges Nicholas B. Cramer and Melissa D. Berrier-Cramer.

The Horticulture Department recently hosted the fifth annual High School Horticulture Field Day competition at the Schneebeli Earth Science Center. The event is based on the National Collegiate Landscape Competition that Penn College students regularly attend, sponsored by the National Association of Landscape Professionals. This year, two schools – Central Pennsylvania Institute in Bellefonte and Williamsport Area High School – brought a total of 22 students to the Allenwood area campus on April 10 to compete in contests such as hardscape installation, sales presentation, floral and corsage design, plant identification and equipment safety. Seven alumni of the program returned to judge, with help from current students. “This is a great day to showcase what we do for these high school students,” horticulture instructor Carl J. Bower Jr. said. “Faculty, staff and administration all come together to help put on a great day for the students. Having our alumni on hand gives them the chance to help mentor these young folks and share their experiences in the industry. The students get to learn firsthand some of the opportunities in this field.”
Photos by Bower; Deborah C. Books, secretary to the dean of transportation and natural resources technologies; and Becky J. Shaner, alumni relations specialist

MLK Organization Holds Yearly Fashion Show

Kacie L. Weaver, an applied human services student from Harrisburg, shimmers under the ACC lights.

Kacie L. Weaver, an applied human services student from Harrisburg, shimmers under the ACC lights.

Strikingly making the scene are Glendalis Guadarrama, a nursing major from Avondale, and Wilmer I. Chase, of Lancaster, enrolled in architectural technology.

Strikingly making the scene are Glendalis Guadarrama, a nursing major from Avondale, and Wilmer I. Chase, of Lancaster, enrolled in architectural technology.

Nursing major Chesnya I. Cherulus, of Elmont, New York, lets loose her inner nerd. At right is the evening's emcee, Antony Griffin-Betterson, of Philadelphia, studying residential construction technology and management.

Nursing major Chesnya I. Cherulus, of Elmont, New York, lets loose her inner nerd. At right is the evening’s emcee, Antony Griffin-Betterson, of Philadelphia, studying residential construction technology and management.

Peforming Sam Smith's "Stay With Me" is Gwendolyn A. Ntim, a pre-nursing major from Yonkers, New York.

Peforming Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me” is Gwendolyn A. Ntim, a pre-nursing major from Yonkers, New York.

A celebratory closing to a classy night

A celebratory closing to a classy night

Minorities Lending Knowledge held its fourth annual fashion show in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium on Saturday evening. Members of the group, as well as other students and campus organizations, children and siblings volunteer to model. Multiple scenes from Penn College Pride to Future Career – even a touch of Disney’s “Frozen” for the kids – could be seen throughout. “Every year the group works hard to put on the fashion show and gives its absolute best to entertain the audience,” said Kacie L. Weaver, president of the organization (formerly known as the Multicultural Society). “Expect to hear about the next fashion show in Spring ’16. All are welcome to attend and participate!”
Photos by Caleb G. Schirmer, student photographer 

Unexpected Nature Portraits Are Focus of Next Gallery Exhibit

Photographer Robin Germany's image "Holly Lake: Buds" is part of a series of visuals captured by using a high dynamic range camera secured in underwater housing.

Intimate and unexpected portraits of nature will fill The Gallery at Penn College for its next exhibit, “Sim-Biotic,” running March 17 through April 23.

Spotlighting the works of photographer Robin Germany, the exhibition brings together three bodies of work representing the Texas artist’s investigations of the natural world as it reflects and deflects its human neighbors.

Through the lens of philosophy, Germany makes photographs that inquire into the nature of being human and the humanness of nature. “Surface Tension,” “A Difficult Nature” and “On The Brink” are the series offering a view of nature inextricably intertwined with humans and laden with implications for the future. Germany’s works are achieved through a variety of photographic equipment including a high dynamic range camera secured in underwater housing and a 120-pinhole camera.

A meet-the-artist reception is set for 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, March 26, featuring a 5:30 p.m. gallery talk. The reception and exhibit are open to the public and free of charge.

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Penn College Welcomes New Employees

PCToday continues its regular feature – welcoming new full-time and regular part-time Pennsylvania College of Technology employees, as reported by the Human Resources Office.

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College Holds First ‘Lavender Graduation’

G. Patrick Butler, a 2007 computer information systems graduate now working for Amtrak in Philadelphia, recounts what attracted him to Penn College in the first place: the people, the personal interaction and the positive attitude of a clerk in the Wildcat Express convenience store.

G. Patrick Butler, a 2007 computer information systems graduate now working for Amtrak in Philadelphia, recounts what attracted him to Penn College in the first place: the people, the personal interaction and the positive attitude of a clerk in the Wildcat Express convenience store.

Sara H. Ousby (left), the college's associate director of student activities for diversity and cultural life, congratulates Bethany M. Reppert for her selfless campus/community activism. "She doesn't do things for the credit," Ousby said. "She simply does what she thinks is the right thing to do."

Sara H. Ousby (left), the college’s associate director of student activities for diversity and cultural life, congratulates Bethany M. Reppert for her selfless campus/community activism. “She doesn’t do things for the credit,” Ousby said. “She simply does what she thinks is the right thing to do.”

PC Alliance President Wesley G. Ginnick honors his organization's partners.

PC Alliance President Wesley G. Ginnick honors his organization’s partners.

The keynoter (center) is reunited with Student Affairs personnel from his Penn College days. From left are Kimberly R. Cassel, director of student activities; Elliott Strickland, chief student affairs officer; Katie L. Mackey, coordinator of off-campus living and commuter services; and Timothy J. Mallery, assistant director of residence life.

The keynoter (center) is reunited with Student Affairs personnel from his Penn College days. From left are Kimberly R. Cassel, director of student activities; Elliott Strickland, chief student affairs officer; Katie L. Mackey, coordinator of off-campus living and commuter services; and Timothy J. Mallery, assistant director of residence life.

Penn College’s first Lavender Graduation – celebrating the contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender students and their allies – was held Friday evening in the Thompson Professional Development Center. Alumnus G. Patrick Butler, a student during the founding year of the PC Alliance organization, was the guest speaker for the event. “I was proud to be there at the beginning and even more proud to be here tonight,” he said. “And I’m proud to see my alma mater moving with the times.” Such events, now held at nearly 50 colleges and universities nationwide, are an educational opportunity for the entire campus community, Butler said. “We are all people and expect to be treated as such. We live in a very interdependent world; do we go through life with fists up or open hands?” The graduation paid tribute to Bethany M. Reppert, of Minersville, who will receive her Bachelor of Science degree in applied human services in May. In welcoming remarks by President Davie Jane Gilmour and in the keynote address, the senior was reminded of the personal and professional resource that Penn College represents. “Your education is a framework, a starting point, a running start to your career,” Butler told her. “Put your degree to work – not just for you, but for the betterment of society.” The night included honors for a number of others that have supported PC Alliance in its advocacy. Receiving kudos from organization President Wesley G. Ginnick, a construction management student from Altoona, were Sigma Pi fraternity, the Wildcat Events Board, Student Government Association, Equality Central PA and The Planet Bar in downtown Williamsport. The graduation was the culmination of Pride Week, which included campus speakers, films and a symposium.

Penn College Teams Have Busy Week

Pennsylvania College of Technology spring sports teams had a very busy week with six of its teams competing in 25 events.

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Williamsport Technical Institute Reunion Marks 15th Year

Forty-five graduates of Williamsport Technical Institute, a predecessor of Pennsylvania College of Technology from 1941-65, gather for a group photo on campus.

About 50 graduates of Williamsport Technical Institute, a Pennsylvania College of Technology forerunner, attended a 15th annual reunion on April 17.

The event, held in the college’s Thompson Professional Development Center, provided an opportunity for alumni and their guests to enjoy lunch, reminisce and hear presentations by six students enrolled in aviation maintenance, automotive restoration and construction technology majors.

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Penn College Students Selected to Cook at Kentucky Derby

Penn College students Brianna R. Helmick, a culinary arts and systems student from Hershey, and Eileen N. Harrington, of Etters, who received an associate degree in hospitality management and is continuing her studies toward a bachelor’s degree in technology management, pause above the iconic Churchill Downs track during the 2014 Kentucky Derby.

Thirty-eight Pennsylvania College of Technology students have been selected to cook for thousands at the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby on May 2.

Known as “the most exciting two minutes in sports,” the tradition-steeped Kentucky Derby attracts more than 150,000 guests, including its fair share of celebrities.

At Churchill Downs, students will spend a week helping to mix, chop and cook thousands of pounds of ingredients that they’ll serve to guests in suites and luxury boxes throughout the facility, including The Mansion, a lavish, invitation-only venue.

Students are also assigned to the main kitchen, Jockey Club Suites, Turf Club Lounge, Finish Line Suites and the Plaza Balcony. In addition to cooking for the main event, several students will prepare food for “Dawn at the Downs,” a popular Louisville tradition that gives visitors an opportunity to enjoy breakfast in Millionaires Row while watching the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks contenders conduct morning workouts.

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Emergency Scenarios Aid Students’ Real-Life Readiness

While students from other majors observe, nursing student Amanda S. Kopczick, of Mifflinburg, takes the temperature of “patient” Kristina N. Varner, of Lewisburg.

Around 250 students and employees from the School of Health Sciences participated in three days’ worth of emergency simulations on campus this week. In its third year, the exercise is known as the Interdisciplinary Professional Event and provides a unique opportunity for students and faculty from different majors within the School of Health Sciences to collaboratively care for patients.

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Ceramics Students Gain New Experience in Old-World Art Form

Spring's appreciated arrival allows ceramics students to congregate outdoors.

Spring’s appreciated arrival allows ceramics students to congregate outdoors.

The pots are adorned with objects that leave an imprint in the still-hot clay.

The pots are adorned with objects that leave an imprint in the still-hot clay.

Stabley aids a student's handiwork.

Stabley aids a student’s handiwork.

Look out below: Artists at work

Look out below: Artists at work

From a single medium, varied results

From a single medium, varied results

Ten students in David Stabley’s Ceramics II class this week created raku clay pots in the courtyard of the Pajama Factory – studio space northwest of campus, where the instructor of ceramics and wood sculpture has a kiln. Each student made at least two pieces, which were subjected to separate firings. “The first firing is called horsehair firing,” he explained. “The pieces were fired to 1,600 degrees Fahrenheit and taken out of the kiln while still hot. Then, horsehair, sugar and feathers are burned into the surface of the pots.” The second firing is called Obvara firing and is an old method of firing and sealing the clay surface. “I mixed up a solution of water, flour, yeast and sugar and let it ferment for three days,” Stabley said. “The pots were fired to 1,650 degrees Fahrenheit, taken out while hot and dunked into the mixture, creating oranges and blacks over the pots.”
Photos by Dalaney T. Vartenisian, student photographer

Campus Community Able to Follow Students’ ‘Race to Zero’ Online

"Race to Zero"Supporters of the Penn College team involved in the U.S. Department of Energy’s “Race to Zero” Student Design Competition can watch their presentations live Saturday through an online link from Golden, Colorado. Presenting their plans for a Habitat for Humanity house to be built in Williamsport in the summer of 2016 are Dustin C. Bailey, of Petersburg, and Christopher G. Master, of Cranberry, enrolled in building science and sustainable design: architectural technology concentration. The pair – traveling with Robert A. Wozniak, associate professor of architectural technology – will be joined by six teammates back home via videoconferencing. They are among 33 entries from the United States and Canada competing to develop affordable, energy-efficient homes; winners will be announced during Sunday evening’s award dinner. The schedule, along with the information necessary to access the “Race to Zero” presentations online, follows. (EDITOR’S NOTE: Times are listed in Mountain Daylight Time; add two hours for their East Coast equivalent.) Race to Zero

May 4 Deadline Set for 2015-16 Colloquia Proposals

Daniel J. Doyle

Daniel J. Doyle

Proposals will be accepted until May 4 from faculty, staff and retirees interested in being considered as presenters for the Daniel J. Doyle Technology & Society Colloquia Series, opening in the Fall 2015 semester. Following the success of last year’s Centennial Colloquia, President Davie Jane Gilmour announced that the ongoing series would be dedicated in honor of Daniel J. Doyle, a professor emeritus and the college’s 1984 Master Teacher. Proposals will be accepted by email through next month’s deadline. More information is available in the official flier, distributed Friday in employee mailboxes: Colloquia Series

College’s Honor Society Chapters Induct 128 Students

Pennsylvania College of Technology recently held induction ceremonies, welcoming 128 high-achieving students into its honor society chapters for two- and four-year students. Paul L. Starkey, vice president for academic affairs/provost, and Tom Gregory, associate vice president for instruction, offered remarks at both proceedings.

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Longtime Aviation Faculty Member Named Assistant Dean

Walter V. Gower

Walter V. Gower has begun duties as assistant dean in the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

A 25-year faculty member, Gower most recently was assistant professor of aviation at the college’s Lumley Aviation Center in Montoursville.

“Wally Gower is an excellent addition to the leadership team in Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies,” said Paul L. Starkey, Penn College’s vice president for academic affairs/provost. “Wally has great experience as an educator and is respected by his peers and students. His enthusiasm for student success will be of great benefit to the school and the college.”

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‘Props for Profs’ Applauds Advocates, Supports Students

"Props for Profs"

“Props for Profs”

A fundraising initiative launched on the Penn College Alumni Relations Facebook page encourages all segments of the campus community to make a gift – to give “props” – on behalf of a faculty or staff member who has influenced their lives. “I know that our faculty and staff change lives and form lifelong connections with alumni, their colleagues, parents and other friends of the college,” President Davie Jane Gilmour said in announcing the Props for Profs campaign. “And I look forward to seeing the outpouring of thanks for their hard work.” Alumni, parents, friends and employees are all encouraged to donate by midnight Friday;  those sharing “props” can enrich the Penn College Fund for as little as $5, providing scholarship support, helping to purchase state-of-the-art lab equipment, and funding student travel that leads to hands-on experiences in real-world environments.

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