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Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Events Faculty & Staff Students

Feb. 29 ‘murder mystery’ to tempt, tease dinner patrons

Participants help a roving gumshoe sift through clues during last year's Murder Mystery Dinner.

The 2020 edition of the Student Engagement Office’s Murder Mystery Dinner is scheduled for Leap Day Saturday, Feb. 29 in the Mountain Laurel Room of Penn College’s Thompson Professional Development Center. Tickets for students ($16.95; flex or declining balance) and for faculty and staff ($19.95) are available online. For more information, consult the event poster: Murder Mystery Dinner

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February 12, 2020
Alumni Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality

Culinary grad advances to ‘Chopped’ finale

Kristina Wesneski

2013 Penn College culinary arts and systems graduate Kristina Wisneski was the last chef standing in a championship episode of Food Network’s “Chopped” competition show.

The episode, “$50,000 Champs Challenge: Part 3,” premiered Tuesday and pitted Wisneski, who also won an episode that first aired in February 2019, against three other champions. After successfully wowing a panel of judges with her quick creations that used mandatory mystery ingredients, she advances to “$50,000 Champs Challenge: Grand Finale,” set to premiere on Tuesday, Feb. 18, at 9 p.m.

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February 5, 2020
Alumni Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality

Alumni ‘Chopped’ winner taking part in championship challenge

"Chopped"Kristina WesneskiTune in on Tuesday, Feb. 4, to watch Chef Kristina Wisneski, ’13, battle other “Chopped” champions on Food Network’s popular competition show. Wisneski, who earned a bachelor’s degree in culinary arts and systems, first appeared on Season 40 of “Chopped” in February 2019, when she was named winner of an episode titled “Wonton Wonder.” This time around, Wisneski is taking part in “$50,000 Champs Challenge: Part 3.” The episode is set to premiere at 9 p.m. and will be rerun three hours later (at midnight, Feb. 5), and at 7 p.m. Feb. 18. Wisneski is sous chef of Ripplewood Whiskey & Craft, in Ardmore. In 2019, the restaurant was listed among the 25 best new restaurants in Philadelphia’s western suburbs by Main Line Today. At the 2020 Pennsylvania Farm Show, Penn College students worked as assistants to Wisneski s she demonstrated a recipe on the Culinary Connection stage and prepared samples for the audience.

January 27, 2020
Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Management Faculty & Staff Students

Course teaches students about food sustainability, security

Pennsylvania College of Technology applied management student Mallory A. Hoffman (left), of Pottsville, and culinary arts student Alexa D. Scatamacchia, of Fleetwood, prepare their team’s dish in a combined cooking competition and lesson in equitably distributing nutritious food at the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank’s Williamsport branch.

In a bright, clean kitchen across town from their usual classrooms and laboratories, students majoring in culinary arts and other fields at Pennsylvania College of Technology learn more about food security, one of many considerations students discover as they explore the topic of food “sustainability.”

Food Sustainability is a course designed for students in the college’s hospitality majors, but available to anyone.

“Sustainable foods are grown or raised naturally,” explained student Janelle R. Becker, of Fort Loudon, who is pursuing a degree in culinary arts. “They are not only renewable but regenerative: They help the environment. It is important to not only help people, but also the earth, to make sure we always have the resources available that we have now.”

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Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Business & Hospitality Management

Penn College announces winners of annual Food Show

Winners of the Chef Eugene Mattucci Best of Show award at Pennsylvania College of Technology’s annual Food Show are, from left, Victoria J. McLamb, of Williamsport; Keowa A. Clemens, of York; and Sherly F. Mendez, of Tobyhanna. The students teamed up to create a “Fiesta!”-themed cold platter and charcuterie board display.

Pennsylvania College of Technology recently named the winners in its annual Food Show, during which students showcased final projects for the fall semester for judges and visitors from seven secondary schools.

Taking home the Chef Eugene Mattucci Best of Show Award was a three-student team that produced a “Fiesta!” cold platter and charcuterie board display. The piece was their final project for the Advanced Garde Manger course and included a chopped fiesta quinoa salad; haymarket pate en croute with ground pork, pork belly, veal shoulder, and Mexican herbs and spices; apricot and green chile chutney; Monterey Jack cheese; and smoked duck ham.

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Alumni Art & Graphic Design Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Business & Hospitality Management Faculty & Staff Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications Students

Longstanding project, long-lasting legacy

Santaella (left) and Kreitzer stand with the stunning tile wall.
Santaella (left) and Kreitzer stand with the stunning tile wall.
The final touches to the piece: triangle toppings
The final touches to the piece: triangle toppings
Relief sculptures in clay
Relief sculptures in clay
Artwork awaits stair strollers.
Artwork awaits stair strollers.
Infinite tales in tiles
Infinite tales in tiles

Over 500 students and more than 500 ceramic tiles in the making, another stunning example of Penn College art is complete and ready for rave reviews and views. Adorning a wall in the north stairwell of the Bush Campus Center, the ceramics sensation was started in Fall 2013 by David A. Stabley, instructor of ceramics and wood sculpture, after he received permission from administration. “It was my idea to have students make something to leave behind as part of a permanent art piece,” Stabley said. “It’s an interesting idea of working on a group project over such a long period of time. And it’s nice to decorate a plain stairwell area to give it some life!” With the help of two Ceramics III students – Amber Kreitzer, of Port Trevorton, and Natascha G. Santaella, of Guaynabo, Puerto Rico – Stabley recently placed the finishing touches on the CC stairwell project: ceramic triangles topping the tile wall. Kreitzer and Santaella earned associate degrees in baking and pastry arts in 2018 and will graduate this month with Bachelor of Science degrees in applied management. Stabley and smaller groups of students have installed the Centennial Mosaic on a wall of the Physician Assistant Center and mosaics in Capitol Eatery. The artist has also crafted solo mosaics in the atrium of the Breuder Advanced Technology & Health Sciences Center and on an exterior wall of the Hager Lifelong Education Center. Stabley’s inspiring artwork can also be found in downtown Williamsport.

December 12, 2019
Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Business & Hospitality Management Students

Students prepare food for benefit Oktoberfest

Ditchfield (left) and students provided authentic Oktoberfest fare on behalf of a Centre County volunteer fire company.
Ditchfield (left) and students provided authentic Oktoberfest fare on behalf of a Centre County volunteer fire company.

Students in the Regional American Cuisine course, taught by Chef Michael J. Ditchfield, instructor of hospitality management/culinary arts, produced authentic German Oktoberfest food for the Millheim Oktoberfest, a community event that benefits the Millheim Fire Co. In the course, students study cuisines, preparations and influential culinary leaders from various regions. They prepare regional recipes using traditional and modern kitchen techniques.
Photo provided

November 22, 2019
Alumni Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality

Culinary grad enlightens beverage management class

“It took me 10 years to find a restaurant like Le Jeune Chef,” Faherty, ’08, said while explaining the career path that led her to fine-dining restaurant 2941. “I fell in love with Le Jeune Chef while I was here.”
“It took me 10 years to find a restaurant like Le Jeune Chef,” Faherty, ’08, said while explaining the career path that led her to fine-dining restaurant 2941. “I fell in love with Le Jeune Chef while I was here.”
Faherty provides ideas to Hospitality Beverage Management Service and Controls students about their own beverage menu ideas.
Faherty provides ideas to Hospitality Beverage Management Service and Controls students about their own beverage menu ideas.

Christine L. Faherty, who received Penn College degrees in culinary arts technology (2005), dietary manager technology (2005) and culinary arts and systems (2008) returned to campus on Nov. 6 to talk with students in Chef Mary Trometter’s Hospitality Beverage Management Service and Controls class about her work as a professional craft bartender and about the role of a beverage program in a restaurant’s operations and revenue.

Faherty is the assistant to the beverage manager at 2941, a fine-dining restaurant in Falls Church, Virginia.

“I use all of the tools that I learned in school,” she said. “We all build menus; I do that, but for a liquid menu.”

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November 8, 2019
Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Business & Hospitality Management Faculty & Staff Students

Club’s ‘culture of service’ provides hurricane relief

Stevie A. Petrison, of Landenberg, and Victoria A. Sosar, of Berwick, celebrate their handiwork as it heats in the baking lab’s new, industry-standard Revent ONE26 Rotating Rack Oven. Both students are in business administration: sport and event management concentration.

The Penn College Business Club recently made and sold 100 apple dumplings to benefit survivors of Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas.

The hurricane struck the island nation on Sept. 1, leaving 70,000 people in need of immediate humanitarian relief after high winds and waves combined to destroy homes and infrastructure.

The idea for the fundraiser came from conversations with the club’s advisers about the devastation experienced by Bahamas residents. The advisers suggested the club raise funds. The club’s members quickly agreed.

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October 8, 2019
Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Business & Hospitality Management

Bachelor’s degree launched for future restaurant managers

Pennsylvania College of Technology is launching a bachelor’s degree in business administration: restaurant and hospitality operations (available in Fall 2020) that will answer the hospitality industry’s demand for front-of-the-house managers who have strong knowledge and skill in business applications.

The 580,000 restaurant and food service jobs in Pennsylvania represent 10% of the state’s total employment. To serve that industry, Pennsylvania College of Technology is launching a bachelor’s degree in business administration: restaurant and hospitality operations.

The new degree, available in Fall 2020, answers the hospitality industry’s demand for front-of-the-house managers who have strong knowledge and skill in business applications. Feedback from the college’s industry partners further indicates that a bachelor’s degree is required for entry-level management positions in most restaurant companies.

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October 1, 2019
Alumni Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts

Penn College culinary alum feeds ‘souls’

“What I enjoy most out of life is giving back.” Pennsylvania College of Technology alumnus Robert E. Wood lives that credo daily as the executive chef at JBJ Soul Kitchen in Toms River, New Jersey. As part of the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation, JBJ Soul Kitchen is a nonprofit community restaurant that serves paying and in-need customers. Wood, who earned a bachelor’s degree in culinary arts and systems, employs his skills to create three-course meals that feed stomachs and souls. “I love cooking. I love all that stuff. But being able to feed someone that really needs it, someone that really wants it, it goes a long way. You can actually see the difference you’re making in people’s lives.” As is readily apparent in a new video on the college’s YouTube channel, the 2017 Penn College graduate truly is a tomorrow maker.

September 18, 2019
Automated Manufacturing & Machining Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Business & Hospitality Management Collision Repair & Restoration Faculty & Staff Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Nursing & Health Sciences Plastics & Polymer Radiography Students Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies Welding

Student interaction among highlights of legislative visit

Stopping for a photo op at the Gold Rush Excavator are (from left) Everett, Gilmour, Cutler, Smeltz and Yaw.
Stopping for a photo op at the Gold Rush Excavator are (from left) Everett, Gilmour, Cutler, Smeltz and Yaw.
During his travels, Cutler enjoyed interactions with students who reside in or near his legislative district, including baking and pastry arts students Rebecca High (left), of Willow Street, and Alana L. LaPenta, of Lemoyne.
During his travels, Cutler enjoyed interactions with students who reside in or near his legislative district, including baking and pastry arts students Rebecca High (left), of Willow Street, and Alana L. LaPenta, of Lemoyne.
In the manufacturing lab, Cutler learns about the mechanics of BAJA team racing from students including John D. Kleinfelter (center in red shirt), a manufacturing engineering student from Lebanon.
In the manufacturing lab, Cutler learns about the mechanics of BAJA team racing from students including John D. Kleinfelter (center in red shirt), a manufacturing engineering student from Lebanon.
The tour winds its way through the new welding expansion. Cutler’s late father was a welder, so he held a keen interest in the facility and the skill.
The tour winds its way through the new welding expansion. Cutler’s late father was a welder, so he held a keen interest in the facility and the skill.
Back to his roots, Cutler visits the radiography lab to hear about advances in technologies from Christine L. Eckenrod, the college’s new director of radiography.
Back to his roots, Cutler visits the radiography lab to hear about advances in technologies from Christine L. Eckenrod, the college’s new director of radiography.

State Rep. Bryan Cutler (R-Lancaster), the second-highest ranking member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, visited Penn College on Thursday. Cutler, serving his first term as majority leader, was accompanied on the tour – which took in a number of instructional areas of main campus – by Jacob G. Smeltz, his chief of staff, as well as two members of the college’s board of directors: Sen. Gene Yaw, chair, and Rep. Garth Everett. President Davie Jane Gilmour and other members of the college administration (including Michael J. Reed, vice president for academic affairs and provost, and Patrick Marty, chief of staff) welcomed the guests, and various deans and faculty members led Cutler through The Victorian House, welding and metal fabrication, advanced manufacturing, automotive restoration, culinary arts and hospitality, plastics and polymer engineering, and several majors in the School of Nursing & Health Sciences. Cutler started his career in radiography, earning a certificate from Lancaster General School of Radiology. He worked as an X-ray technologist before earning a health care management degree from Lebanon Valley College and working as an administrator in his local hospital’s radiology department. He later earned a law degree, focused on health care law, from Widener Law School and has served in the Legislature since 2007. The day’s itinerary also included lunch at Le Jeune Chef Restaurant and a chance to see the Gold Rush Excavator on a nearby parking lot.

Alumni Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Business & Hospitality Management Faculty & Staff Students

Faculty member teaches guild workshop on campus

Chef Charles R. Niedermyer II (seventh from left), instructor of baking and pastry arts and culinary arts at Pennsylvania College of Technology, who taught one of this year’s two-day regional workshops for the Bread Bakers Guild of America, is shown with guild participants; student assistants Claudia M. Walling and Tyler C. Geer (far left), both of Williamsport; and some of the artisan baked goods created in the workshop.

An instructor of baking and pastry arts and culinary arts at Pennsylvania College of Technology was invited to teach one of this year’s two-day regional workshops for the Bread Bakers Guild of America.

Chef Charles R. Niedermyer II, a faculty member at the college since 2005, taught “A Modern Approach to Classic Viennoiserie” to 14 guild members Aug. 8-9 in the college’s baking and pastry arts laboratory.

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