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Memorial service set for retired ‘Master Teacher’

Victor A. Michael Sr.Services will be Saturday evening for Victor A. Michael Sr., an award-winning former member of Penn College’s electronics faculty, who died Jan. 10, 2021, at the age of 86. Michael, who retired as an associate professor during the 1996-97 academic year, was an inaugural recipient of the college’s Excellence in Teaching Award (1982) and was honored with the Master Teacher Award – the institution’s most prestigious faculty accolade – in 1991. He also was a member and past president of the Penn College Education Association, which represents all full-time faculty, librarians and counselors. An obituary was published in Wednesday’s Williamsport Sun-Gazette.

January 13, 2021
Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Technologies Faculty & Staff STEM Students Workforce Development

New majors ‘power’ electronics lab at Penn College

Electronics students at Pennsylvania College of Technology finish installing a conveyer unit in a new lab at the college’s Center for Business & Workforce Development. The addition of two automation engineering technology baccalaureate degrees prompted the creation of the electronics lab. Besides the conveyer system, the space features 16 programmable logic controller stations and four Kuka industrial robots. About 60 students per semester are using the lab.

The addition of two automation degrees is powering a new electronics lab at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

Located in the Center for Business & Workforce Development, the 906-square-foot space is accommodating about 60 students per semester who are seeking an automation engineering technology baccalaureate degree in either mechatronics or robotics.

“Industry was telling us that they liked what our students were doing, but they were looking for more because of the growth of automation in industry,” said Stacey C. Hampton, assistant dean of industrial and computer technologies. “We looked at what we already had and how we could expand on that. When we expanded the program, we needed to expand the space. Now that we put stuff in there, I don’t know if it’s big enough!”

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Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Technologies General Information STEM Students Workforce Development

Automation degrees power new Penn College electronics lab

The addition of two automation engineering technology baccalaureate degrees is powering a new electronics laboratory at Penn College. The lab is equipped with 16 student-installed Programmable Logic Controller stations (featuring both Allen-Bradley and Siemens PLCs), four Kuka industrial robots and a conveyer system. “We recruited the whole class that came in now, these freshmen, without having that lab,” said Stacey C. Hampton, assistant dean of industrial and computer technologies. “So having that lab now is just going to add another layer of excitement. They can see all the learning stations. They can see the robots. They can see the conveyer system.” The lab is for the “tomorrow makers” seeking an automation degree in either mechatronics or robotics.

November 24, 2020
Alumni Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Technologies

Electronics alum among presenters at online summit

Eli M. HughesAn award-winning graduate and member of Penn College’s Electronics and Computer Engineering Technology Advisory Committee is headlining a session at a free online conference for electronics hardware engineers this week. Eli M. Hughes is co-founder and chief technology officer for TZero Research and Development, which produces ultrasonic acoustic sensors and software for a variety of industries. Hughes earned a bachelor’s degree in electronics engineering technology in May 2001 and was presented with an Alumni Achievement Award nine years later. He will present “Crossing the Chasm: The Road to Becoming a Full-Stack Hardware Engineer” at 2:15 p.m. Thursday (EDT), the third and final day of the AltiumLive Virtual Summit (Oct. 6-8). Hughes said the session will retrace the path to a career in hardware engineering, including his Penn College education.

October 5, 2020
Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Technologies Faculty & Staff Plastics & Polymer

Penn College grants emeritus status to trio of retired faculty

The Pennsylvania College of Technology Board of Directors on Thursday authorized emeritus status for three retired faculty members.

Approved for faculty emeritus designation are Richard J. Calvert Jr., assistant professor and co-department head, electronics; Jeffrey B. Weaver, associate professor, electronics; and Timothy Weston, associate professor, plastics technology.

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October 1, 2020
Alumni Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Technologies Information Technology

Penn College grads ‘deliver’ for Amazon

Matthew A. Bamonte and Jiovanni N. Rosario

One is a bit shy, grew up 20 minutes from campus and studied information technology. The other is outgoing, was raised in Pennsylvania Dutch Country and chose electronics.

Both used Pennsylvania College of Technology as a springboard for rewarding careers with prominent subsidiaries of one of the world’s most innovative and omnipresent corporations.

Their paths didn’t cross while attending Penn College, but Matthew A. Bamonte and Jiovanni N. Rosario are kindred spirits, thanks to their roles within Amazon Inc. Bamonte is a learning experience designer for Amazon Robotics in North Reading, Massachusetts, and Rosario works as a control projects engineer for Amazon Web Services in northern Virginia.

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September 9, 2020
Alumni Automated Manufacturing & Machining Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Design Technology Engineering Technologies Students

Intern trio provides vital service for Penn College renovations

Three Pennsylvania College of Technology automation engineering technology students interned for the college this semester, helping to revamp a machining facility and equip a new electronics lab. From left are Levi E. Pomeroy, of Dillsburg; Brian J. Daniels, of Lake City; and Conner J. Nickerson, of Bethlehem.

For a few worrisome weeks, three Pennsylvania College of Technology students thought they would join the ranks of countless others whose summer internships were casualties of the COVID-19 pandemic. But the college “engineered” a solution, a favor the students more than returned.

Brian J. Daniels, Lake City; Conner J. Nickerson, Bethlehem; and Levi E. Pomeroy, Dillsburg; spent the summer helping faculty and staff revamp the college’s machining facility and equip a new electronics lab, benefiting their future and the hands-on education of the next generation of “tomorrow makers” at the college.

“I don’t think a lot of work in those labs could have happened without them,” said Stacey C. Hampton, assistant dean of industrial and computer technologies. Hampton devised the internship with Howard W. Troup, instructor of automated manufacturing and machining, and Ken J. Kinley, assistant professor of electronics and computer engineering technology.

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August 20, 2020
Alumni Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Technologies Faculty & Staff

Penn College grad helps ‘power’ New Jersey

Lester Wrobel graduated from Pennsylvania College of Technology in 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in electronics and computer engineering technology. Today, he is a principal technology engineer for Public Service Enterprise Group, the largest gas and electric service provider in New Jersey.

The parental warning is etched in Lester Wrobel’s memory. In the midst of dropping him off at Pennsylvania College of Technology, his parents delivered a stark message before returning to their New Jersey home: “If you fail, head west, because we won’t be opening the door for you.”

During the next few years, there were moments when Wrobel seemed destined for a westward journey. Lack of focus and subpar grades blocked the on-ramp to Interstate 80 east. But with supportive Penn College faculty and his fortitude, Wrobel persevered to earn more than an invitation home. He helps power his parents’ house, along with 2.3 million other electric customers throughout New Jersey.

“I would compare it to the fundamentals of electricity,” Wrobel said, pointing to the irony. “There always needs to be a return path in an electrical circuit for the light to be on.”

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August 11, 2020
Alumni Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Technologies

Penn College alum honored with NSF faculty award

The National Science Foundation recently honored Pennsylvania College of Technology alumnus Gregory C. Ditzler, a Lebanon County native, with a Faculty Early Career Development Award, the NSF’s most prestigious grant to faculty in their first academic assignment. Ditzler is an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Arizona (which provided the photo).

A middling student in high school, Gregory C. Ditzler believes “the light” went on for him at Pennsylvania College of Technology. Today, he helps “flip the switch” for the next generation of students, an effort recognized by the National Science Foundation.

The NSF recently honored Ditzler with a Faculty Early Career Development Award, the agency’s most prestigious grant to faculty in their first academic assignment. Ditzler – an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Arizona – received $500,000 in funding for the next five years to support his academic and research endeavors in and out of the classroom.

“The award is about more than setting you up for five years of funding,” said Ditzler, who earned a bachelor’s degree in electronics and computer engineering technology from Penn College in 2008. “It’s about how it sets you up for the next 10 or 15 years of your career and where your research leads.”

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July 21, 2020
Alumni Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Technologies

Penn College grad ‘designs’ a success story at Google

Millersville native Matthew M. Staub, a 2007 graduate of Pennsylvania College of Technology, is a printed circuit board design engineer for Google’s Pixel hardware group in Chicago. Staub served as a lead designer for the Pixel 3XL and Pixel 4, Google’s Android smartphones.

Like many in his generation, Matthew M. Staub relied on a portable CD player to enjoy music during his teen years. Unlike most, Staub’s Discman did more than blast tunes. It helped boost his passion for electronics.

Today, Staub puts that passion to work for a worldwide powerhouse: Alphabet Inc., parent company of Google and one of three technology conglomerates valued at over $1 trillion. The 2007 Pennsylvania College of Technology graduate is a printed circuit board design engineer for Google’s Pixel hardware group in Chicago.

During the past few years, Staub, originally of Millersville, has served as a lead designer for both the Pixel 3XL and Pixel 4 – Google’s Android smartphones – as well as other internal and consumer-facing products.

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July 7, 2020
Alumni Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Engineering Technologies

A tip from a grad at Google: ‘Ask questions’

Matthew M. StaubA new Penn College blog entry spotlights December 2007 alumnus Matthew M. Staub, whose degree in electronics engineering technology led to employment with Google’s Pixel hardware group. Staub offers insights into his rewarding work as a circuit board design engineer and shares invaluable advice with current students: “It’s OK if you don’t know something. The important thing is the steps you take to figure it out. Start by asking questions. It took me a few years into my education to understand the value in asking questions and to speak up in class.”

June 12, 2020
Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies STEM Students

Penn College introducing new automation technology degrees

Students will be working in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s mechatronics lab as part two new baccalaureate degrees: automation engineering technology: mechatronics, and automation engineering technology: robotics and automation.

For more than a century, Pennsylvania College of Technology and its predecessor institutions have adapted to industry needs, so students are prepared to be tomorrow makers upon graduation.

That tradition continues with two new baccalaureate degrees: automation engineering technology: mechatronics, and automation engineering technology: robotics and automation. Applications are being accepted for the majors, which will begin in Fall 2020.

“We are very pleased to offer these new degrees. Both programs reflect the growing demand for advanced skills in automation,” said David R. Cotner, dean of Penn College’s School of Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies. “We take great pride in being responsive to industry, and we are confident that our students and employers will benefit from the majors.”

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August 1, 2019
Alumni Architecture & Sustainable Design Art & Graphic Design Aviation Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Building Construction Business & Hospitality Business & Hospitality Management Collision Repair & Restoration Construction & Design Technologies Dental Hygiene Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Emergency Medical Services/Paramedic Engineering Design Technology Faculty & Staff Health Information Technology Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Information Technology Landscape/Horticulture Makerspace Nursing Nursing & Health Sciences Occupational Therapy Assistant Physical Therapist Assistant Physician Assistant Radiography Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications Surgical Technology Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies Welding

From living space to makerspace, summer visitors have their hands full

Learning the skills and craftsmanship required of a builder in the newest pre-college offering: Building Construction.

A dozen residential Pre-College Programs and a daytime Creative Art Camp brought hundreds of young women and men to Penn College’s campuses in mid-June, providing hands-on entry to the myriad career opportunities reflected in the institution’s postsecondary curriculum. Keeping campers (and PCToday photographers) busy in recent days were these fun learning opportunities, some of which involved culminating projects: Architecture Odyssey, Autism Spectrum Post-Secondary Interest Experience (ASPIE), Automotive Restoration, Aviation, Building Construction (new this year), Creative Art Camp, Engineering, Future Restaurateurs, Graphic Design Summer Studio, Grow & Design Horticulture, Health Careers, Information Technology and SMART (Science and Math in Real-world Technologies) Girls.

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Architecture & Sustainable Design Art & Graphic Design Automated Manufacturing & Machining Aviation Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Building Construction Business & Hospitality Collision Repair & Restoration Construction & Design Technologies Dental Hygiene Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology General Information Health Information Technology Information Technology Landscape/Horticulture Nursing Nursing & Health Sciences Occupational Therapy Assistant Physical Therapist Assistant Physician Assistant Plastics & Polymer Radiography Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications Surgical Technology Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies Welding

Pre-College Programs to enrich participants’ summer experience

Young women enrolled in SMART Girls, among the wide-ranging roster of pre-college programs at Pennsylvania College of Technology, assemble a robot during last summer’s camp.

Building construction has been added to the abounding schedule of pre-college initiatives offered at Pennsylvania College of Technology, hands-on summer activities that mirror the nationally renowned opportunities afforded postsecondary students.

“Our Pre-College Programs offer living and learning experiences in which students have opportunities to explore unique academic interests in a state-of-the-art environment,” said Deborah B. Wescott, manager of conference and guest relations. “It’s a chance to work and make connections with industry leaders, meet and mingle with your peers, and establish a path that could lead to all sorts of future possibilities.”

The signup deadline is May 31 for the institution’s 12 residential programs and its one day camp.

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March 12, 2019
Alumni Building Construction Business & Hospitality Construction & Design Technologies Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Penn College Magazine Penn College Magazine Feature STEM Technology Management

Setting the stage

Penn College graduates (from left) Jeffrey T. Feeman, Eric T. Metzler and Franklin N. Carr have found a calling at Sight & Sound Theatres, where audiences are awed by the on-stage results of their behind-the-scenes work.
Penn College graduates (from left) Jeffrey T. Feeman, Eric T. Metzler and Franklin N. Carr have found a calling at Sight & Sound Theatres, where audiences are awed by the on-stage results of their behind-the-scenes work.
Three alumni use their skills to craft scenery and on-stage technology for the panoramic stage at Sight & Sound Theatres in Lancaster.
Three alumni use their skills to craft scenery and on-stage technology for the panoramic stage at Sight & Sound Theatres in Lancaster.

From the Fall 2018 Penn College Magazine: Three graduates’ craftsmanship wows audiences of more than a million a year at Sight & Sound Theatres. Read “Setting the Stage.”