News about Construction & Design Technologies

Penn College to Showcase ‘degrees that work’ at State Farm Show

Student Kassandra Sellinger, a culinary arts and systems student from Linden, and Chef Mike Ditchfield perform a cooking demonstration on the Culinary Connection stage at the Pennsylvania Farm Show in January 2016.

Nearly 6,000 animals, 10,000 competitive entries and 300 commercial exhibits – and more than 100 rewarding career pathways uniquely represented by Pennsylvania College of Technology – will be on display as America’s largest indoor agricultural exposition celebrates its 101st anniversary next month.

In what has become a New Year’s custom, the college will show off its prestigious “degrees that work” from Jan. 7-14 at the Pennsylvania Farm Show in Harrisburg, where visitors can get a participatory glimpse at a rewarding future.

“Attending the PA Farm Show is a beloved tradition for Penn College. During the weeklong event, Admissions, Alumni Relations and Academic Affairs will showcase all of the amazing opportunities that await students on our campuses,” said Claire Z. Biggs, coordinator of admissions events and services. “We hope that, through our hands-on activities, students, alumni and families will learn why we have so much Penn College Pride! We can’t wait to meet all of the Farm Show guests this year and share what makes applied technology education so special.”

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PCCA, Visiting Scouts Build Rapport in Carpentry Lab

Building construction technology major Michael J. Deragon, of Fort Washington, helps Joey Boler Santoyo with a keepsake toolbox. The boy is the grandson of Stanley G. Boler, who retired in 2012 from the electronics and computer engineering technology faculty; his mother, Amanda, is a 1998 graduate in legal assistant-paralegal.

Whitmyer, who is also an assistant coach for the Wildcat baseball team, helps a young carpenter channel his determination.

Near the end of a successful evening, students and visitors gather for a commemorative photo.

Helping a Cub Scout get the job done is Alexander J. Kosylo, of Pittsburgh, enrolled in residential construction technology and management: building construction technology concentration.

James C. Feingold (left), of Freehold, N.J., a residential construction technology and management: building construction technology concentration student, helps Steven C. Fox and son. The elder Fox is a Penn College alumnus, graduating in 2008 with an associate degree in electromechanical maintenance technology.

The Penn College Construction Association mentored Pack 24 from Muncy on Monday night, helping the Cub Scouts assemble birdhouses and toolboxes in the hands-on environment of the School of Construction & Design Technologies. With guidance from Cub Master Stephen D. Puzio and Barney A. Kahn IV and Levon A. Whitmyer, instructors of building construction technology, the students worked with the Scouts to safely craft their handmade souvenirs. Before the youngsters and chaperones left, take-home treasures proudly tucked under their arms, they toured instructional space in the Carl Building Technologies Center.

High School Students Celebrate STEM Day at Penn College

Penn College student Shawn L. Sheeley Jr., of Kersey, shows a high school student how to use surveying equipment. The hands-on workshop was part of a National STEM Day celebration at the college that brought homeschoolers and students from four area high schools to campus.

A group of 90 high-schoolers spent Nov. 8 at Pennsylvania College of Technology, where they explored a variety of careers as part of National STEM Day.

“STEM” is short for science, technology, engineering and math. According to the Population Reference Bureau, U.S. policymakers watch trends in the science and engineering labor force because high-tech workers increase our capacity for innovation and ability to compete in the global economy.

Penn College’s STEM Day activities were designed to give high school students a hands-on glimpse of some in-demand STEM-related careers.

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Architecture, Construction Students Apprised of Certification Opportunity

Jim Ellwood meets with students in one of Rob A. Wozniak's Codes, Specifications and Estimating classes.

Students in Penn College’s School of Construction & Design Technologies recently had the opportunity to meet Jim Ellwood, educational liaison for the International Codes Council, who visited Building Code-based classes taught by Rob A. Wozniak and Harry W. Hintz Jr. Ellwood introduced students to the ICC certificate opportunity that he started a few years ago while maintaining his other role as a plans examiner.  His goal is to better prepare the upcoming workforce to better understand and use Building Codes. Working with both high schools and colleges, Ellwood travels on his days off to promote use of ICC’s International Residential Code and International Building Code, along with companion study books. Hintz, an instructor of construction technology, has students studying the IRC, and Wozniak, associate professor of architectural technology, has students studying the IBC. By the end of the semester, both groups will have the opportunity to take the test that Ellwood provides. If students pass, they will receive the ICC certificate – another resume-building tool that Penn College students have over competing graduates. While other institutions have inquired, Ellwood mentioned that the college is one of only three in the nation currently involved in this training.
Photo by Wozniak

Second Group of Concrete Wedges Rises at ‘Garden’ Site

Reber's class fills the forms for one of 18 upright pillars that will hold plaques of recognition.

An earlier pour shows the configuration of wedges atop a geometric pad.

The Campus Center roof provides a perfect "big picture" vantage point.

Another set of vertical walls for Penn College’s Recognition Garden was erected this week by Franklin H. Reber, instructor of construction technology, and students from one of three classes working on the project. Using Centre Concrete’s conveyer truck just west of the Bush Campus Center, the group (which also built the wooden forms) poured the second of three units that will hold commemorative plaques. The site, to be dedicated in the spring, is a successor to the inscribed bricks that line the Hagan Way entrance to main campus.
Photos by Andrew M. Richardson, General Services clerk of the works/construction manager

Masonry Students Repair Weather-Beaten Planters at Local Church

Gwendolyn M. Wagner, of Cressona, a building construction technology: masonry emphasis student, concentrates on the task at hand.

Penn College at work!

The job site: a venerable landmark in Williamsport's East End

A brief pause in action to oblige a passing photographer

Nicholas E. Mills, of Tyrone, signals his workplace satisfaction. Enrolled in building construction technology: masonry emphasis, Mills earned a residential builder degree in May.

In yet another visible and lasting community example of Penn College know-how, a group of construction students is rebuilding two composite wall planters at Calvary Baptist Church in the city. The Advanced Masonry Principles class was asked by Daniel W. Yoas (a member of the Calvary congregation and a Penn College faculty member) to reconstruct the planters near the sanctuary door at 42 Washington Blvd. “What a blessing to have these opportunities,” said Glenn R. Luse, instructor of building construction masonry. “The students could observe how masonry structures can fail due to lack of maintenance. In this case, the planters were exposed directly to years of hard winters with no protection.” The brick-and-block planters split apart, and students are rebuilding them – while paying close attention to matching the brickwork of the original structure.

Students Attend Leadership Conference for Women in Construction

Two construction management majors at Pennsylvania College of Technology attended the recent Women in Construction Leadership Seminar at Kiewit Corp.’s headquarters in Omaha, Neb.

Lauren S. Herr, of Lititz, and Juliann M. Reazor, of Schuylkill Haven, applied to participate in the all-expenses-paid trip designed to develop the leadership skills of collegiate women. They were among 36 women from throughout the United States selected to attend the Sept. 29-30 event, sponsored by one of the largest and most respected construction, mining and engineering organizations operating in North America and Australia.

“Both Lauren and Juliann were prime candidates for an opportunity like this,” said Wayne R. Sheppard, assistant professor and construction management department head. “They are examples of how gender doesn’t matter; it is all about your passion, intelligence and work ethic.”

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Penn College/WVIA Documentary Explores Green Career Options

“When you’re in high school, and you’re thinking about a career, you could think about what’s just going to make you a lot of money, or you could think about something that you’re going to be happy doing for the rest of your life.”

This advice, from a Pennsylvania College of Technology graduate working at one of the world’s great gardens, is offered in “Working Class: Build & Grow Green,” an hourlong documentary premiering Thursday, Oct. 27, at 7 p.m. on WVIA Public Media.

The second episode of a Telly Award-winning series produced by Penn College and WVIA, “Working Class: Build & Grow Green” invites viewers to consider a wide range of options available to those who are considering “green” careers, which support wise use of natural resources.

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Who Designs the Future?

Graphic design student Ainsley R. Bennett adds shadow to a still-life sketch. Hand-drawing skills remain important in the college’s graphic design and advertising art majors.

In a Penn College lab, a student polishes graphics for a class project.

From the Fall 2016 Penn College Magazine: As detailed in the first episode of the “Working Class” television series, a knack for design and creativity is essential to other fields, including science, math, engineering and technology. Read “Who Designs the Future?

Center Hosts ‘Maker Week’ for Early Elementary Students

Children smile at a freshly printed toy.

Before they headed back to elementary school, a group of children at Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Dunham Children’s Learning Center got a hands-on taste of the technical world, exploring how things are made.

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Concrete Pour Brings ‘Garden’ Project Closer to Completion

As concrete flows down the chute into reinforced forms constructed last week, students scramble into action in this view from the Campus Center roof.

Franklin H. Reber adds to his Concrete Construction students' hands-on instruction through a keen eye sharpened by years of field experience.

The School of Construction & Design Technologies vehicle provides an apt backdrop for the bustling jobsite, where students polish their skills today while leaving a landmark for years to come.

Students and mentor use a variety of tools to spread and smooth the concrete during Wednesday's pour.

The project will eventually tie all three pads into a singular commemorative space.

Students poured the first of three concrete pads Wednesday for Penn College’s Recognition Garden, under construction on the Bush Campus Center lawn. The project – a collaboration of faculty, students and General Services staff – is a successor to the honorary and memorial bricks that border the main entrance to campus. The second pad will be poured Friday and the third on Monday; students will then start constructing forms for the 6-foot vertical concrete wedges that will hold the commemorative plaques.

‘Working Class’ TV Episode Earns Telly Award

"Working Class"

The premiere episode of “Working Class,” a public television series produced by Pennsylvania College of Technology and WVIA Public Media, has earned a 2016 Telly Award.

The series was honored with a bronze award statue and certificate.

The Telly Award is acknowledged as a premier award for film and video productions, including outstanding local, regional and cable programming. The 36th annual competition this year considered more than 13,000 entries from all 50 states and five continents.

“Working Class: Dream and Do,” which premiered in January, appears regularly on WVIA. It also has aired on other Pennsylvania public television stations including WHYY and MindTV in Philadelphia, WQED in Pittsburgh, WLVT in Allentown, and WPSU in State College.

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Concrete Work Underway for Commemorative Landmark

Students abide a blistering hot Wednesday to get the job done.

Students in instructor Franklin H. Reber’s Concrete Construction lab have built the reinforced forms for the first of three hexagonal pads that will be the basis for Penn College’s Recognition Garden outside the Bush Campus Center. While two other classes will be assigned the remaining pads, this group will return to the site next week to pour concrete. Each of the three sections will eventually hold six vertical pillars, onto which will be installed plaques duplicating the information on deteriorating bricks that now line the main campus entrance off Maynard Street.

Preparatory Work Begins on Recognition Garden

Plotting and prepping the site on Thursday morning are Michael L. Bremigen (left), horticulture technician, and Chad L. Karstetter, horticulturist/motorpool lead person.

Work has begun on Penn College’s Recognition Garden on the west side of the Bush Campus Center, a cooperative project involving General Services employees and three groups of students taught by Franklin H. Reber, instructor of construction technology. The attractive and handicapped-accessible site will replace the commemorative bricks that line the main entrance to campus – bricks that have weathered poorly and have been slowly deteriorating over the years. The information on them will soon be transferred onto plaques that will be mounted on 18 concrete pillars rising from three hexagonal pads. Students will start constructing the forms for the three pads and the connecting sidewalks on Sept. 7; the pillars will also be poured on-site. A formal unveiling and dedication at the garden (which will also include LED lighting, planters, green space and walkways) is planned for the spring.

Faculty Member, Culinary Senior Appear on Live TV

"PA Live!"

Chef Mary G. Trometter, assistant professor of hospitality management/culinary arts, showed viewers how to make compressed melon salad on Monday’s edition of “PA Live!” on WBRE. She was joined in the demonstration by Christopher S. Kasler, a senior in the college’s culinary arts and systems major.