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Fall Commencement to Be Held Dec. 16 at Community Arts Center

Penn College will hold its Fall 2017 commencement ceremony Dec. 16 at the Community Arts Center.

A commencement ceremony will be held Saturday, Dec. 16, for the nearly 300 Pennsylvania College of Technology students who have petitioned to graduate following the Fall 2017 semester.

The ceremony will start at 11 a.m. in the Community Arts Center, 220 W. Fourth St., Williamsport. More than 225 students are expected to march in the proceedings.

The student speaker will be Garrett Davis Corneliussen, of Hickory, North Carolina, who will receive a Bachelor of Science degree in welding and fabrication engineering technology.

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Creativity Reigns in Scholars-and-Scents Display

'Tis the season for yuletide greenery, beautifully incorporated by Rachel L. Hill, of Centre Hall, enrolled in landscape/horticulture technology: plant production emphasis.

Applied management student Brittany L. Mink, of Allentown, who earned a baking and pastry arts degree in 2016, designed this delicate entry in the Wedding Composite category.

Andrea L. Solenberger, of Harrisburg, pursuing a degree in applied management, honored her baking and pastry arts degree with delicious detail.

The black, gold and green of Jamaica's flag is recreated by Jessica T. Haynes, a culinary arts and systems student.

Another baking and pastry arts alum enrolled in applied management – Alexis L. Kepley, of Reading –  stacked "cupcakes" that are too pretty to eat!

End-of-year projects in The Art of Floral Design, an elective taught by alumna/business owner Karen R. Ruhl, form a striking array just inside the Madigan Library entrance. The class (HRT 260) is open to all students, regardless of academic major or experience level, and each final piece is chosen in conjunction with the instructor to ensure that it is “neither too simple nor too complicated to complete in the given time period.” The designs are created using the accumulated fundamental skills learned during the semester, and students choose the container, flowers and foliage required to implement them, as well as meet all the requisite elements and principles. The projects will be on display through Tuesday.

Collaboration Crafts Logo for Penn College Brewing Major

Bubbles rising in a fermentation tank are featured in the logo, a melding of science and art.

A collaboration of art and science has crafted a logo for the new brewing and fermentation science degree at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

The logo, designed by Morgan N. Keyser, of Dillsburg, a 2017 graduate of the college’s graphic design major, is being used on various materials, including glassware promoting the brewing and fermentation science associate degree major that launched for the Fall 2017 semester.

“I thought this was a great example of interdepartmental program synergy,” said Timothy L. Yarrington, instructor of brewing and fermentation science. “Branding can be the key to success in the brewing industry.”

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Cru’s Fall Retreat Beyond ‘Life-Changing’

From multiple institutions, but with a single focus, scores of students retreat to a scenic campground.

Gathering in worship to start the day

Communing with nature at the peak of autumn are (from left) alumnus and Cru intern Caleb G. Schirmer; Penn College students Jacob C. Snyder and Timothy L. Pegg; and, from Liberty University, Todd Robatin.

Penn College's Michael J. Schaeffer, of Cogan Station, joins students from other colleges in a challenge to build the tallest free-standing balloon tower.

Competitors gather in a large field in preparation for the next event.

Nearly 100 students from Penn College and a number of other institutions gathered for this month’s Cru Susquehanna Valley fall retreat at Mountain View Bible Camp in Danville. Students experienced a refreshingly fun time through team-building exercises, notably called “Crunger Games” – a spinoff from “The Hunger Games” – outdoor activities and worship sessions, among other pursuits. Students also enjoyed fellowship over meals generously served by camp staff. Two first-time attendees left with something greater than themselves, as related by Caleb B. Schirmer, in his second year as a campus field ministry intern for Cru. “I was nervous about going, I had never done a retreat before, but the moment that I got there, I felt so welcomed!” one student said. “There was an immense amount of love in the air during the whole weekend and I left with such a renewed sense of spirit and purpose. It wasn’t just life-changing for me, it was soul-changing.” Another, a Penn College student, said, “I went to fall retreat with the intention of getting closer with a community that is open-hearted and supportive. When I left, I had received something far more than that. It was a great growing experience and an amazing way to get connected with a community of lovely, crazy and fun people!”
Photos by Rachel A. Eirmann, student photographer

Horticulture Students Network at Green Industry Showcase

Attending GIE+EXPO in Louisville are (from left) Carl J. Bower Jr., assistant professor of horticulture; Joseph A. Kern, Mechanicsburg; Kyle J. Schatz, St. Marys; Kendall A. Wanner, Denver; Benjamin A. Mowrer, Manheim; Jacob R. Courtley, Ardara; William X. DeMarco, Glen Mills; 2013 alumnus Jeremy L. Thorne; Trevor C. Gagliano, Hughesville; Bryce P. Thompson, Enola; and Griffin T. Fulton, Mertztown, an NALP student ambassador.

It's batter up – 120 feet up, in fact – at the Louisville Slugger Factory and Museum, fronted by a scale replica of Babe Ruth's 34-inch power-hitter.

A contingent of Penn College landscape/horticulture technology students and a faculty member recently joined hundreds of industry leaders and up-and-comers for The Green Industry & Equipment Expo in Louisville, Kentucky. A premier networking and educational conference for entrepreneurs and professionals in the landscaping and green industry, GIE+EXPO featured a trade show and 20-acre outdoor demonstration area, along with educational opportunities through Hardscape North America and the National Association of Landscape Professionals. In addition to the eight students accompanying Carl J. Bower Jr., assistant professor of horticulture, Griffin T. Fulton, of Mertztown, attended as one of 10 NALP student ambassadors. Chosen from across the country, the ambassadors help run the event, work the registration table, introduce speakers and are heavily involved with the many networking opportunities at the show. “My time at the Green Industry Expo as a student ambassador exceeded my expectations farther that I would have ever imagined. Being able to work through (NALP) was key for networking and being able to establish relationships with big names within the industry that will last a lifetime,” Fulton said. “Throughout my three days at the trade show, I also was able to connect with students in the industry, as well as throughout the country. The education and friendships I established at GIE+EXPO will last a lifetime, and I look forward to going back next year!” The group also visited the Louisville Slugger Factory and Museum while there.
Photos provided

Challenge Accepted! College Wins Community Cup, Helps Raise $17,000 for Salvation Army

An aerial view shows runners bundled up and starting out.

The Salvation Army of Williamsport will receive about $17,000 to be used for essential services to local families, thanks to Saturday’s Community Challenge.

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s commitment to the event resulted in the college winning the Community Cup, a traveling trophy presented to the organization with the greatest participation. Penn College logged 30 registered guests and 22 volunteers, including students enrolled in the Community and Organizational Change course and a number of student-athletes. The Penn College cross-country team served as an event sponsor.

“The volunteers from the human services program and athletics were incredible and helped to make a very special event,” said Michael J. Reed, dean of sciences, humanities and visual communications, who serves as vice chairman of the local Salvation Army Board of Directors.

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‘STEM Day’ Offers Firsthand Look at College’s Stature

Alumnus Derek F. Knipe, a manufacturing engineer at PMF Industries in Williamsport, gets a Wildcat welcome back to campus.

More than 60 students and faculty from North Penn High School, Williamsport Area High School and Columbia-Montour Area Vocational-Technical School visited Penn College during a recent STEM Day program.  The Nov. 8 “Changing the World With STEM” observance included alumni speaker Derek F. Knipe, a 2005 manufacturing engineering technology graduate employed at PMF Industries on Reach Road.  Organizers had help from faculty and students from the School of Construction & Design Technologies and the School of Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies. Among those sharing their experiences with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) were Rylee A. Butler, an engineering design technology major from Bellefonte; Connor L. Winslow, of Blanchard, enrolled in information technology sciences-gaming and simulation; heating, ventilation and air conditioning design technology students Thomas E. “Ted” Daros Jr., of North Salem, New York, and Barry P. “Pat” Watkins, of Blossburg, and Bradley Q. Kishbaugh, instructor of HVAC technology; Jordan M. Scott, of Cogan Station, and Kachine L. Fry, of Butler, both majoring in residential construction technology and management: building construction technology concentration; and Jacob Giraffa, a mechantronics engineering technology student. The high school students were able to see firsthand the technology with which Penn College students regularly work in their classes; robotics, mechatronics and 3-D printing demonstrations were provided. Manufacturing engineering technology major Logan B. Goodhart from the Baja SAE Club showed off the Baja car and what the club is working on, while visitors to the Engineering Design Technology Workshop drove robots into mock combat.

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Last updated November 13, 2017 | Posted in Alumni, Automated Manufacturing & Machining, Construction & Design Technologies, Events, Faculty & Staff, Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning, Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies, Students | This gallery contains 1 photo. | Tagged as | One Comment

Dental Hygiene Program Hosts Oral Health Conference

Dental professionals from across northcentral Pennsylvania attend the 16th annual Oral Health Conference in Penn’s Inn.

Tom Viola, speaker, teacher, author and registered pharmacist, provides insight on pain management in the dental profession.

The dental hygiene program hosted the Northcentral Pennsylvania Area Health Education Center’s 16th annual Oral Health Conference on Oct. 27. The event was held in Penn’s Inn and attracted 200 dental professionals from across the state. The audience included 81 graduates of the Penn College program and 36 second-year dental hygiene students. Rhonda S. Walker, alumni relations specialist, and Kimberly R. Cassel, director of alumni relations, attended to welcome the alumni group to campus. The keynote speaker was Tom Viola, registered pharmacist and certified consultant pharmacist, who provided a presentation on the pharmacological aspects of pain management for dental professionals titled “I Haven’t Got Time for the Pain!”
Photos provided

Fun, Fright Mingle in Ramp-Up to Halloween

Treats for the sweet tooth are temptingly displayed by Christopher D. Hogan, a welding and fabrication engineering technology major from Halifax.

Several events put some shriek in the past week – not to mention those always-welcome giggles from the young – as Penn College ushered in the Halloween season. Students living in The Village Apartments provided their annual trick-or-treat hours for the campus community, followed by an evening carnival across the street. Other activities included the Arc Asylum “haunted” welding lab, and the Dance of the Dead in the Breuder Advanced Technology & Health Sciences Center.

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A Sun-day in Name Only … but, Oh, What a Day!

Pottstown residents Tom, Kim and Jason Francis pause during their soggy stroll for a portrait in campus exploration.

Umbrellas were the most coveted accessory, but nowhere near as essential as the information that visitors to Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Fall Open House carried home. Held across the institution’s awe-inspiring campuses, the autumn tradition delivered tours, priceless exchanges with helpful members of the campus community, valuable exposure to student life with those who live it and close-up views of the newest majors at a 103-year-old institution that never shows its age.

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Last updated October 29, 2017 | Posted in Admissions, Alumni, Business & Hospitality, College Store, Construction & Design Technologies, Events, Faculty & Staff, General Information, Health Sciences, Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies, Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications, Sports, Students, Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies | This gallery contains 51 photos. | Tagged as | Leave a comment

‘Out of the Darkness’ Walk Draws Hundreds, Raises Thousands

A river of Wildcat blue, fueled by goodwill, flows along the campus mall.

Saturday evening’s Greater Lycoming Walk, bringing hope to those affected by suicide’s nondiscriminating touch and wresting public attention “Out of the Darkness,” attracted 396 participants and raised more than $14,500 to fund prevention and awareness activities. Aligned with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, walkers – some comprising teams to honor absent friends and family members; others banded together from college offices, fraternities and athletics – traveled a 5K campus course that started and finished at the Field House. Donations will be accepted through Dec. 31.

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Diesel Instructor Receives ‘Pathfinder’ Award From Caterpillar

Taking part in the Caterpillar Pathfinder to Excellence Faculty Award presentation are (from left) Randy Fetterolf, Cleveland Brothers Equipment Co.; Melissa Charest, H.O. Penn Machinery Co. Inc.; Karl Quinn, Alban Tractor Co. Inc.; Penn College faculty honoree Brad R. Conklin; Ron Garber, Ransome CAT; Justin W. Beishline, assistant dean of transportation and natural resources technologies; and Ronald Barton, Milton CAT.

A diesel instructor at Pennsylvania College of Technology has been honored by Caterpillar for inspiring the students who will be tomorrow’s industry technicians.

Brad R. Conklin, a faculty member in the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies, was given the Pathfinder to Excellence Faculty Award during an October advisory meeting of Caterpillar officials and dealers at the college’s Thompson Professional Development Center.

“Mr. Conklin has been an outstanding addition to the Diesel Equipment Technology program,” said Justin W. Beishline, assistant dean of the school and a 2011 Pathfinder recipient. “His industry experience, coupled with his dedication to student learning and student success, make him a great choice for this award.”

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Colloquium Panel Explores Cross-Cultural Access to Medical Care

The panelists underscore their presentation with thoughtful responses to audience feedback.

Millions around the world are suffering the symptoms of serious or terminal illnesses, yet only one in 10 has access to effective pain management tools.

Three local experts teamed to explore what tools might be used to extend palliative care to areas within the United States and beyond that have few resources, presenting their findings during the latest edition of the Technology & Society Colloquia Series.

Thomas E. Ask, professor of industrial design at Pennsylvania College of Technology; Dr. John Boll, associate director of the Williamsport Family Medical Residency at UPMC Susquehanna; and Dr. Alexander Nesbitt, UPMC Susquehanna’s medical director for Susquehanna Hospice, Supportive and Palliative Care and Gatehouse Inpatient Hospice Unit, presented “Medical Care on the Edge: Redesigning Care Across Cultures” in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium on Tuesday.

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College Boasts Record Employer Turnout for Career Fair

Students and employers connect at the Field House for Penn College’s Fall 2017 Career Fair. Other employers were stationed at the college’s Bardo Gymnasium for the event, which featured 237 employers offering 3,180 jobs and/or internships.

The future recipients of Pennsylvania College of Technology’s “degrees that work” attracted a record number of employers to the school’s Fall Career Fair.

Representing all economic sectors, 237 employers – including 19 Fortune 500 companies – recruited students at the event. The employers offered approximately 3,180 jobs and internships, reflective of the college’s 100-plus bachelor’s, associate and certificate majors.

“The employers are looking for students who are technically skilled and prepared to enter today’s workforce,” said Erin S. Shultz, coordinator of career development at the college. “Those are our students. That’s why we have a record number of employers recruiting our students. And that’s why our students enjoy a 96 percent placement rate.”

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Professor’s Sabbatical Yields Virtual Adviser Prototype

Jeff L. Rankinen

During his sabbatical last spring, Jeff L. Rankinen planned to investigate the possibilities of artificial intelligence. The Pennsylvania College of Technology associate professor returned to the classroom this fall after transforming one of those possibilities into a reality.

Rankinen was part of a four-person team that earned $15,000 in funding to develop a “virtual adviser” as part of the Penn State EdTech Network’s Nittany Watson Challenge, which tasked entrants to improve the student experience via artificial intelligence. Just five of 39 teams were awarded $15,000 to create both a working prototype and minimum viable product in conjunction with IBM Watson, a technology platform focused on data analysis, natural language processing and machine learning.

“I thought the competition would be a good opportunity to learn more,” said Rankinen, who has taught electronics and computer engineering technology at Penn College since 1986. “I have been interested in artificial intelligence since beginning my graduate work at Penn State in 1987. It was very enriching to get immersed in artificial intelligence with IBM Watson during the competition.”

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Pennsylvania College of Technology is a special mission affiliate of The Pennsylvania State University