News about Building Construction

Member of College’s Construction Faculty Attends D.C. Symposium

Levon A. Whitmyer

An instructor of building construction technology was among the participants at a recent Residential Construction Professors Symposium in the nation’s capital, gaining perspective on relevant industry topics and exemplifying the practicality of a Pennsylvania College of Technology education.

Levon A. Whitmyer joined counterparts from Michigan State, LSU, Kennesaw State, the University of Maryland Eastern Shore and the University of North Florida – all of which, like Penn College, are recipients of Homebuilding Education Leadership Program grants from the National Association of Home Builders.

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Fourteen Incoming Students Chosen as 2018-19 ‘BE Scholars’

Fourteen of this fall’s first-year students in construction and design majors at Pennsylvania College of Technology have been selected as Built Environment Scholars in a program that rewards academic talent in science, technology, engineering and mathematics-related fields.

Scholarship funding up to an annual $10,000 per student is awarded through a $1 million National Science Foundation grant that aims to increase retention, graduation and career readiness for students in six of Penn College’s STEM-focused pursuits.

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Penn College Presents Distinguished Teaching Awards

Joanna K. Flynn, associate professor of mathematics, was presented with the highest honor accorded to Penn College faculty – the Veronica M. Muzic Master Teacher Award – at Spring 2018 Commencement. She is shown here with Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour.

Three Pennsylvania College of Technology faculty members were honored during Spring 2018 Commencement ceremonies for their outstanding teaching abilities.

Joanna K. Flynn, associate professor of mathematics, was presented with the highest honor accorded to Penn College faculty: the Veronica M. Muzic Master Teacher Award.

Two other faculty members received Excellence in Teaching Award recognition: Edwin G. Owens, associate professor and department head for mathematics, and Thomas J. Mulfinger, associate professor of building construction technology.

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SkillsUSA Competitors Strike Gold; 21 Students Headed to Nationals

SkillsUSA Pennsylvania

Nearly all 27 members of Pennsylvania College of Technology’s SkillsUSA team – 21 of them advancing to the 54th annual National Leadership and Skills Conference in Louisville, Kentucky – earned medals during recent state competition.

The competitors represent majors across four of Penn College’s academic schools, and the theme for the April 18-20 Pennsylvania Leadership and Skills Conference in Hershey couldn’t have been more fitting for students gaining career-making skills in hands-on fashion: “Champions at Work: Job-Ready, Day One.”

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Rebuilding Nepal

A helicopter lands in a Himalayan village to transport Daniel J. LaSota, ’09, to his next assignment. LaSota is a project manager for Steadfast Nepal, helping to replace homes destroyed by 2015 earthquakes.

From the Spring 2018 Penn College Magazine: Residential construction technology and management graduate Daniel J. LaSota, ’09, builds sustainable, earthquake-resistant homes in remote Himalayan villages. Read “Rebuilding Nepal.”

Today’s Students Mentor Tomorrow’s ‘Women in Construction’

Teamwork in the lab

Girls in ninth through 12 grades visited Pennsylvania College of Technology on Friday for a hands-on exploration of careers in construction and design.

The daylong “Framing Your Future” event introduced 42 participants to the industry’s vast career opportunities; included a networking lunch with guest speaker Angie (Martinozzi) Moore, a May 2015 construction management alumna and an assistant project manager at Wickersham Construction & Engineering Inc. in Lancaster; and provided a dialogue with current college students.

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Local College Students Earn ROTC Scholarships, Contracts

Bald Eagle Battalion Army ROTC held a contracting ceremony April 3 at Penn College. From left are: Master Sgt. Steven Kowatch, senior military science instructor, Lock Haven University; Cadet Austin S. Weinrich, Jenkintown; Cadet Kaitlyn Barmore, Succasunna, N.J.; Cadet Casey A. Curtin, Berwick; Cadet Hayden N. Beiter, Williamsport; Cadet Jordan H. Murray, Chambersburg; Cadet Samuel D. Pollock, Wrightsville; Cadet Christopher T. Craig II, Rixford; Penn College President Davie Jane Gilmour; and Maj. Jonathon M. Britton, professor of military science, Lock Haven University. Beiter, Craig, Curtin, Murray and Weinrich are Penn College students. Barmore and Pollock are students at Lycoming College.

Five Army ROTC cadets from Pennsylvania College of Technology and two from Lycoming College have been rewarded with scholarships and commissioning contracts for their dedication and perseverance.

Penn College scholarship recipients are residential construction technology and management: building construction technology concentration majors Hayden N. Beiter, of Williamsport, Jordan H. Murray, of Chambersburg, and Austin S. Weinrich, of Jenkintown; and plastics and polymer technology major Casey A. Curtin, of Berwick.

Christopher T. Craig II, an automotive technology management major from Rixford, earned a commissioning contract.

The scholarships cover all college expenses and provide a monthly stipend. The contracts include a stipend and funding for a portion of college costs. The scholarships and contracts both lead to a cadet’s commissioning as a second lieutenant upon graduating with a bachelor’s degree.

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Masonry Students Reinforce Bridge to Happy Valley

Penn College students (at left) Wyatt R. Ford, of Oreland, and Hunter M. Landis, of Middletown, mentor visitors to their assigned work station.

Luse (visible at left background) shares his time-tested craft with tomorrow's designers and builders.

Furnished with trowels and masons' "mud," two Penn State students get to work on laying block.

Penn College student Joe J. Hetrick, of Painted Post, N.Y., staffs another of the stops on the interactive instructional tour.

Scores of Penn State students traveled to Penn College’s Construction Masonry Building on Monday, furthering an annual tradition that adds brick-and-mortar practicality to the architecture majors’ studio work at University Park. Representatives of the college’s School of Construction & Design Technologies, including building construction technology students in instructor Glenn R. Luse’s Masonry Principles class, guided their guests through a variety of tasks and techniques. “The most dynamic group ever! It was like 49 Tasmanian devils tearing up the masonry lab,” Luse said. “I loved the enthusiasm and desire to learn in a hands-on environment. Our masonry students really made this happen. Their interaction skills and abilities to teach made me Penn College Proud!”
Photos by James J. “J.J.” Boettcher, student photographer

Architecture Grads Discuss Emerging Technology’s Impact, Potential

Balzer engages BE scholars and architectural technology students in the Hager Lifelong Education Center ...

... and joins colleague Richline (left) in effecting a students' virtual-reality experience.

Two alumni employees of Larson Design Group – David I. Balzer (’01, architectural technology), director of retail design, and Ty C. Richline (’13, architectural technology, and ’15, building science and sustainable design: architectural technology concentration), who leads virtual-reality initiatives for the firm – visited Penn College last week in the second industry presentation for Built Environment Scholars. A roomful of BE Scholars and architecture majors from various academic years attended the presentation on the role of technology in the built environment. The alumni guests showed examples of how technology could be incorporated into client presentations, utilizing augmented realty, virtual reality and 3-D animations. They also provided a demonstration of VR and Oculus goggle sets, immersing students in an interactive virtual environment. Funded through a National Science Foundation grant, the BE Scholars program is designed to increase retention, degree completion and career readiness for students enrolled in the School of Construction & Design Technologies’ two-year majors.
Photos provided

Penn College Alums Engineer Inspiration at Sight & Sound Theatre

Penn College alums Jeffrey T. Feeman and Franklin N. Carr enhance the experience of thousands of spectators every year at Sight & Sound Theatre in Lancaster, which offers the largest faith-based live productions in the United States and is one of the nation’s top three theatrical destinations. Feeman, a 2013 industrial design graduate, serves the theater as a scenic drafter, while Carr, who earned three building construction-related certificates in 2007 and 2008, is a scenic architect. Both are very thankful that their education led to such fulfilling careers. “You know at the end of the day that the show you made, whatever part you had in that show, is eventually changing lives,” Feeman says in a video added to the college’s YouTube channel. “You know at the end of the day that what you are doing does matter.” Co-worker Carr is equally enthusiastic about his Penn College-born career: “Here at the theater, designing it on the computer and seeing it put together in reality up on the shop floor is really cool.”(Watch for more in the Fall 2018 issue of Penn College Magazine.)

On Eve of March Madness, These Brackets Tell Different ‘Cinderella Story’

Piping for the event's dressing rooms lies on the YWCA floor, awaiting the hands-on expertise of construction majors.

From left, Shaffer, Hillman and Saylor skillfully tackle the task at hand.

Five building construction students pulled kindness, elbow grease and a little magic from their toolboxes over the weekend, helping to set up and tear down for the Junior League of Williamsport’s “Cinderella’s Closet.” Organizers collected thousands of new and gently used prom gowns for the event, in which young women (helped by volunteer Fairy Godmothers) could find the perfect formal attire at affordable prices. Contributing time and talents to assemble/disassemble the pipe-and-drape dressing booths at the Williamsport YWCA during their waning days of Spring Break were James P. Dailey, of Williamsport; Joe J. Hetrick, of Painted Post, New York; Terrance C. Hillman, of Williamsport; Michael V. Saylor, of Gettysburg; and Dakota M. Shaffer, of Williamsport.
Photos by Shaffer and Carol A. Lugg, dean of construction and design technologies

Industry Expert to Discuss Building With Concrete

Gregg A. Lewis

The economic benefit of constructing multifamily residences with Insulating Concrete Forms will be the topic of a free presentation co-sponsored this month by Penn College’s School of Construction & Design Technologies.

“The Business Case for Building Multifamily Buildings With Concrete,” featuring Gregg A. Lewis, executive vice president of the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association, will be at 10 a.m. Feb. 28 in Penn’s Inn (Bush Campus Center, second floor).

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Construction Scholars Learning From the Pros

Anthony H. Visco Jr. – an alumnus, adviser and longtime friend of the college – gives students a front-row peek at their imminent careers. (Photo provided)

The semester’s first official industry presentation for Built Environment Scholars, featuring local architect Anthony H. Visco Jr. (a 1967 graduate of Williamsport Area Community College and a member of Penn College’s Architectural Technology Advisory Board), was held recently in the School of Construction & Design Technologies.

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Penn College Racks Up Successes at Home Builders’ Show

Penn College was one of five recipients of a National Housing Endowment grant, which was formally awarded during the 2018 National Association of Home Builders International Builders’ Show in Orlando, Fla. Accepting the check are (from left) instructor Levon A. Whitmyer; students Hayden N. Beiter, of Williamsport; Michael J. Deragon, of Fort Washington; Caleb M. Burk, of Sunbury; Nathaniel M. Barbolish, of Nicholson; Aaron F. White, of Westover; Ryan Z. Zwickle, of Slatington; Justin W. Bates, of Hawley; Casey L. Grim, of Red Lion; Henry A. Rainey, of Jersey Shore; Katherine L. Mertes, of Williamsport; and Hanna J. Williams, of Marion, N.Y.; and instructor Barney A. Kahn IV.

Orlando, Florida, was fertile ground for Pennsylvania College of Technology this season: Students, alumni and faculty all returned in triumph from an international builders’ show held at the Orange County Convention Center.

For starters, the college was presented with a $73,838 Homebuilding Education Leadership Program grant – the culmination of a yearlong effort led by building construction technology instructor Levon A. Whitmyer, with support from instructor Barney A. Kahn IV and Carol A. Lugg, now dean of construction and design technologies.

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PCCA Mentors Cub Scouts in Constructive Outreach

Jersey Shore Cub Scouts join their student/faculty hosts in displaying their woodworking success.

Cub Scout Pack 116 from Jersey Shore visited Penn College’s Carl Building Technologies Center on Wednesday evening, building birdhouses with the help of the Penn College Construction Association. The association’s student members overwhelmingly responded to the community-service opportunity, and the Scouts will earn badges after they apply a finish to their handiwork. The pack leader said the birdhouses will be donated to the Pennsylvania Game Commission.
Photo provided

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