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Alumni Nursing & Health Sciences Surgical Technology

Expecting the unexpected in the OR

Alexis I. AshbyA “typical week” is anything but for alumna Alexis I. Ashby, a certified surgical technologist for UPMC Williamsport, whose Penn College education has prepared her well for the unpredictable ebb and flow of cases through the hospital’s operating rooms. In a newly published blog post, Ashby – who holds an associate degree in surgical technology (2018) and a bachelor’s in applied health studies: surgical technology concentration (2020) – sensitively expresses appreciation for her life and gratitude for the opportunity to improve others’ lives. “I have done tracheotomies in the ICU, emergency bowel resections at 3 in the morning and leg amputations on those too young to be without,” she writes. “As a surgical technologist, you are a part of an amazing system of saving lives and impacting those who are not always aware of your impact on their health and well-being.”

6 days ago
Emergency Medical Services/Paramedic Nursing Nursing & Health Sciences Penn College at Wellsboro Scholarships Students Workforce Development

Pathways Scholarship assists transition to degree programs

Pennsylvania College of Technology has established a new scholarship to support students completing Workforce Development programs in practical nursing and emergency medical technician who wish to further their education.

The scholarship provides assistance for practical nursing graduates interested in the Nursing, LPN to RN program at Penn College and graduates of the EMT course interested in pursuing one of the college’s paramedic majors.

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June 15, 2020
Faculty & Staff Nursing & Health Sciences Physical Therapist Assistant

Physical therapist assistant faculty member adds credential

Mary T. Stout

Mary T. Stout, assistant professor of physical therapist assistant at Pennsylvania College of Technology, recently completed course requirements to become a certified Champion Performance Specialist.

To earn the certification, Stout completed a 34-hour course through Champion Performance Therapy and Training System and the Advanced Continuing Education Institute in Belmont, Massachusetts.

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June 11, 2020
Faculty & Staff Nursing & Health Sciences Physical Therapist Assistant

College appoints director of physical therapist assistant program

Victoria Hurwitz

Victoria Hurwitz has been named director of Pennsylvania College of Technology’s physical therapist assistant program.

Hurwitz, a licensed physical therapist, also holds certification as a Women’s Health Clinical Specialist, and for the past five years, she was a pelvic health physical therapist for UPMC Williamsport.

She had served as a part-time faculty member for the college’s physical therapist assistant program since January 2019.

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June 10, 2020
Alumni Career Services Nursing & Health Sciences Radiography Students

Penn College Career Services helps students adapt to new reality

Shelley L. Moore

Since the COVID-19 pandemic shuttered society, Career Services at Pennsylvania College of Technology has instilled a credo in students: “improvise, adapt and overcome.”

The department personifies that proactive mindset by serving students, alumni and employers virtually and by offering substantive online resources for the “tomorrow makers” enrolled in more than 100 fields of study.

“What we’ve done has worked out well for the students and is being embraced by employers,” said Shelley L. Moore, director of career services. “Most of the services we have offered in person we’ve been able to shift online for the benefit of our students.”

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June 8, 2020
Faculty & Staff Nursing & Health Sciences Radiography

Radiography director elected to professional society’s board

Christine L. Eckenrod

Christine L. Eckenrod, radiography program director at Pennsylvania College of Technology, was recently elected to a two-year term as secretary on the Pennsylvania Society of Radiologic Technologists Board of Directors.

Eckenrod was elected by PSRT members. In addition to serving as board secretary, she is part of PSRT’s legislative committee and chairs its annual Techni-Bowl competition for college students.

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June 3, 2020
Alumni Dental Hygiene Faculty & Staff Nursing & Health Sciences

Dental hygiene director named accreditation site visitor

Shawn A. Kiser

Shawn A. Kiser, dental hygiene program director at Pennsylvania College of Technology, was appointed to the position of commission site visitor for 2020-21 by the Commission on Dental Accreditation.

Site visitors assist the commission in a number of ways, including developing accreditation standards, serving on special committees and serving as site visitors to predoctoral, advanced dental and allied dental education programs. Site visitors are fact-finders, who report their findings to the commission, which then decides on a program’s accreditation status. Kiser’s term begins in October.

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June 3, 2020
Dental Hygiene Faculty & Staff General Information Nursing & Health Sciences Students

Speaker provides timely inspiration to dental hygiene students

Last week, the Pennsylvania College of Technology’s dental hygiene program held a special event for its first- and second-year students, engaging an international motivational speaker who is well-known in the dental field to speak with students via videoconference.

“Our students have been going through such turmoil during this COVID-19 pandemic, that we felt the need to lift their spirits,” said Shawn A. Kiser, the college’s director of dental hygiene.

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May 22, 2020
Faculty & Staff Nursing Nursing & Health Sciences Students

Nursing employee inventively enlists ‘patient’ spouse

Valerie J. Kovalick, with husband Lonnie M. ...

A staff member in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s nursing program was just trying things out, experimenting with what she had on hand at home, to facilitate a distance-learning lesson for Adult Health Nursing I students, but the result garnered praise for the realistic learning opportunity it provided.

Valerie J. Kovalick, simulation laboratory coordinator in the nursing program, was tasked with helping faculty to find ways to teach an unfolding case study via distance learning. Typically, Kovalick’s job is to set up such simulations in the college’s nursing labs, where students learn in-person.

The tools Kovalick used included her cellphone and a tripod, a spare computer monitor, Laerdal simulation software, video-editing software made available by the college to employees, poster board, and a husband willing to play along.

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April 28, 2020
Faculty & Staff Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Nursing & Health Sciences

Local news site profiles Penn College’s ‘helping hands’

On the Pulse’s Anne Reiner recently interviewed Sandra L. Richmond, dean of nursing and health sciences, and Eric K. Albert, associate professor of automated manufacturing and machining, about Penn College’s response to the needs of health care professionals during the COVID-19 pandemic. “We need to do what we can do right now,” Richmond said. “This was an absolute must … so we did provide these supplies and, certainly, we’re going to continue to reach out to our clinical partners and let them know we’re here to support them in any way that we can based on the evolving needs that they have.”


April 19, 2020
Nursing Nursing & Health Sciences Students

Nursing student helps bolster hometown hospital’s ER staff

Connor J. Burke

Pennsylvania College of Technology nursing student Connor J. Burke, of St. Clair, is among many in the Penn College family who are working on the health care “front lines” during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 20-year-old is a sophomore on the Penn College baseball team and is in his second year of study toward a bachelor’s degree in nursing. Since the summer of 2019, Burke has been an emergency room technician in his hometown hospital, working during summer and other college breaks.

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April 16, 2020
Construction & Design Technologies Faculty & Staff General Information Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies NSSC Nursing & Health Sciences Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies

College pitches in to protect COVID-19 front line

Donated equipment awaits delivery to health care providers.
Donated equipment awaits delivery to health care providers.

Pennsylvania College of Technology is aiding the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic by donating personal protection equipment to area health care facilities.

Various departments have spent the past week collecting supplies – originally intended for on-campus student and staff use – to be distributed within the next few days to the college’s nursing home partners.

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March 31, 2020
Emergency Medical Services/Paramedic Faculty & Staff Nursing & Health Sciences

Adjunct instructor named county’s public safety director

Hutchins (right), along with Dr. Gregory R. Frailey (left), medical director for the paramedic program, and John W. “J.J.” Magyar II, part-time faculty
Hutchins (right), along with Dr. Gregory R. Frailey (left), medical director for the paramedic program, and John W. “J.J.” Magyar II, part-time faculty

Jeffrey L. Hutchins, an adjunct faculty member who has served various roles as a paramedic and firefighter since graduating from The Williamsport Hospital & Medical Center Paramedic Training Institute in 1997, was recently hired as director of the Lycoming County Department of Public Safety. “Hutch is in the process of quickly getting up-to-speed in his new role,” said Bambi A. Hawkins, learning laboratory coordinator for Penn College’s paramedic program. “He will be missed in the Susquehanna Regional EMS paramedic supervisor position, where he also served as a pre-hospital field preceptor for our paramedic students, but we are fortunate to retain access to his expertise and services for the part-time faculty role.”
Photo provided

March 11, 2020