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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
Engineering Technologies Faculty & Staff Students Welding

Video conveys Living Chapel’s spectacular nature

Stunning imagery and stirring music combine in a two-minute video posted to the Facebook page for the Living Chapel, an ode to sustainability and spirituality that gleams with the artistry of Penn College welding faculty and students. Soar via drone amid the beauty of the ages, then glide into the Botanical Garden of Rome for a closer look at this monumental achievement.

Living Chapel

September 2, 2020
Engineering Technologies Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning Students

Two HVAC students repeat as national scholarship recipients

Two of five $5,000 scholarships recently awarded by the National Association of Oil and Energy Service Professionals and its co-sponsors have benefited the same pair of Pennsylvania College of Technology students as last year.

Scholarships have again gone to Peter W. Bennett, of Sea Cliff, New York, and Ian H. West, of Hummelstown. Bennett is enrolled in the two-year heating, ventilation and air conditioning technology major; West is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in heating, ventilation and air conditioning design technology.

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August 20, 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 Business, Arts & Sciences Engineering Technologies Faculty & Staff Landscape/Horticulture Mathematics Nursing & Health Sciences Physician Assistant

Three faculty members honored for ‘Excellence in Teaching’

Three faculty members at Pennsylvania College of Technology were presented with Excellence in Teaching Awards at the start of the 2020-21 academic year.

As part of the Distinguished Teaching Awards program at Penn College, President Davie Jane Gilmour presented Excellence in Teaching Awards to Carl J. Bower Jr., assistant professor of horticulture; Barbara F. Di Marco, assistant professor of mathematics; and Heather S. Dorman, instructor of physician assistant.

Distinguished Teaching Awards are presented to full-time faculty at Penn College who have been nominated by their students and colleagues for excellence in instructional performance. There have been 115 recipients since the program began in 1982: 33 Master Teacher Awards and 82 Excellence in Teaching Awards.

“From day one, teaching has been at the core of who we are,” Gilmour said. “As is obvious through comments from their students and colleagues alike, Carl, Barb and Heather are among the very best at putting that mission into practice.”

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August 17, 2020
Architecture & Sustainable Design Building Construction Civil Engineering & Surveying Engineering Technologies Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning Scholarships STEM Students

Ten first-year students chosen as ‘BE Scholars’ at Penn College

Ten students embarking on their first semester at Pennsylvania College of Technology have been chosen as Built Environment Scholars in a program that rewards academic talent in science, technology, engineering and mathematics-related career fields.

Each was awarded a scholarship ranging from $4,250 to $7,000, funded through a $1 million National Science Foundation grant to increase retention, graduation and workforce preparedness for students in many of Penn College’s STEM-focused construction and engineering majors.

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August 13, 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
Building Construction Diesel & Power Generation Engineering Technologies Heating, Ventilation & Air Conditioning Heavy Equipment Students Welding

Penn College students receive Mike Rowe scholarships

Nine Pennsylvania College of Technology students were selected to receive scholarship assistance for 2020-21 from the mikeroweWORKS Foundation, established by skilled-labor advocate Mike Rowe.

The mikeroweWORKS Foundation recognized the potential of nine Pennsylvania College of Technology students to shrink the skills gap by awarding them Work Ethic Scholarships for the 2020-21 academic year.

The foundation, created by skilled-labor advocate Mike Rowe, distributes the scholarships annually to students who “embrace personal responsibility, delayed gratification, a positive attitude and a strong work ethic” in preparing for a career in the skilled trades. Over $1 million was distributed to 223 recipients nationwide. Nearly 1,000 students applied for the scholarships.

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August 4, 2020
Automated Manufacturing & Machining Engineering Technologies Events Faculty & Staff Skills Gap STEM

Penn College ‘manufactures’ educational experience for teachers

Emily Wagner, a counselor at South Williamsport Area Junior/Senior High School, works on building a robotic arm during the recent Manufacturing Externship Camp at Pennsylvania College of Technology. Funded by the National Science Foundation, the camp exposed high school educators to various aspects of manufacturing, so they can communicate the promising career possibilities in that sector to their students.

With support from the National Science Foundation, Pennsylvania College of Technology recently “manufactured” a weeklong educational experience for 13 high school teachers and school counselors from throughout the state.

The Manufacturing Externship Camp revealed to educators the promising realities of manufacturing careers through several activities, including a robot-building exercise that they can replicate at their home schools. The camp is one of several Penn College initiatives – funded by a grant from the NSF’s Advanced Technological Education program – dedicated to growing the manufacturing workforce.

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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
Aviation College Relations Engineering Technologies Faculty & Staff Students

Executive trio donates corporate aircraft to Penn College

A CL-600 Challenger business jet donated to Penn College by a trio of corporate executives will be used for instructional purposes at the college’s Lumley Aviation Center, next to the Williamsport Regional Airport.

Three partners in a corporate aircraft have donated it to Pennsylvania College of Technology for instructional use in the college’s aviation maintenance program.

The Bombardier (formerly Canadair) CL-600 Challenger jet, valued at nearly $825,000, is being donated by Ira M. Lubert, Anthony F. Misitano and Judith M. von Seldeneck.

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Engineering Technologies Heavy Equipment Penn College Magazine Penn College Magazine Feature

Penn College Family: Scooping up skills

Jonathan G. Vasconcelos sits in a Volvo EC220 excavator recently loaned to the college by Volvo Construction Equipment, facilitated by Highway Equipment & Supply Co.
Jonathan G. Vasconcelos sits in a Volvo EC220 excavator recently loaned to the college by Volvo Construction Equipment, facilitated by Highway Equipment & Supply Co.

From the Spring 2020 Penn College Magazine: “Volvo is king in Portugal,” said heavy construction equipment technology student Jonathan G. Vasconcelos as he sat in a Volvo EC220 excavator recently loaned to the college by Volvo Construction Equipment and facilitated by Highway Equipment & Supply Co. Vasconcelos was born in Massachusetts, but his family hails from the Azores, a nine-island archipelago off the coast of Portugal. Read more about his experiences as a member of the Penn College Family in “Scooping up skills.”

July 20, 2020
Alumni Automated Manufacturing & Machining Engineering Technologies Penn College Magazine Penn College Magazine Feature

Lindbergh’s boots and cosmonaut chicken

At the Smithsonian Institution’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, Daniel Ravizza stands in a hangar full of objects that shaped aviation history. The center is the annex of the National Air and Space Museum.
At the Smithsonian Institution’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center, Daniel Ravizza stands in a hangar full of objects that shaped aviation history. The center is the annex of the National Air and Space Museum.
Ravizza helped to conserve famous aviator Charles Lindbergh’s insulated flying boots. In 1927, Lindbergh was the first to complete a solo flight across the Atlantic, flying nonstop from New York to Paris.
Ravizza helped to conserve famous aviator Charles Lindbergh’s insulated flying boots. In 1927, Lindbergh was the first to complete a solo flight across the Atlantic, flying nonstop from New York to Paris.
Ravizza’s first project for the Smithsonian was cans of space food – including cans of Soviet veal, chicken and cheese that dated from 1969. “I had to open these cans from the bottom and remove the contents,” Ravizza said. “This was done with lots of PPE (personal protective equipment)!”
Ravizza’s first project for the Smithsonian was cans of space food – including cans of Soviet veal, chicken and cheese that dated from 1969. “I had to open these cans from the bottom and remove the contents,” Ravizza said. “This was done with lots of PPE (personal protective equipment)!”
Ravizza reinstalls the mercury boiler into the mercury bombardment ion engine/thruster on the SERT-1 (Space Electric Rocket Test 1), a NASA probe that was launched July 20, 1964, to test electrostatic ion thruster design. The conservation team took the spacecraft completely apart to remove the liquid mercury.
Ravizza reinstalls the mercury boiler into the mercury bombardment ion engine/thruster on the SERT-1 (Space Electric Rocket Test 1), a NASA probe that was launched July 20, 1964, to test electrostatic ion thruster design. The conservation team took the spacecraft completely apart to remove the liquid mercury.

From the Spring 2020 Penn College Magazine: In a Smithsonian Institution conservation lab, Daniel Ravizza, a 2014 manufacturing engineering technology graduate, combines his hands-on skills, meticulous nature and passion for history. The treasures he helps to preserve range from spacecraft and space food to the boots and helmet of legendary aviator Charles Lindbergh. Read “Lindy’s boots and cosmonaut chicken.”

 

July 13, 2020