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‘Pink Out’ classes color their world with hope

Radiography students support breast cancer awareness – and the profession’s role in early detection.
Aptly attired, dental hygiene students and faculty paint the clinic pink.
Aptly attired, dental hygiene students and faculty paint the clinic pink.

Penn College programs went pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. On Oct. 9, radiography students dressed in pink. Potential workplaces for radiographers include mammography centers. The dental hygiene program held a “Pink Out” on Oct. 23. Throughout the day, students, faculty and dentists donned pink gowns during patient care activities in the Dental Hygiene Clinic. In addition, the dental hygiene student organization, SADHA, is making a monetary donation to a local cancer patient support charity.
Photos provided by program directors Christine L. Eckenrod (radiography) and Shawn A. Kiser (dental hygiene)

Nursing & Health Sciences Radiography Students

Club’s reactivation includes ‘Case of the Week’ X-ray contest

Reactivated Medical Imaging Club initiates campuswide "Case of the Week" contest.

The Medical Imaging Club has been reactivated this semester and is off to a good start after its first meeting attracted 53 radiography and pre-radiography students. The group elected officers and planned a variety of fun learning activities.

One of those is a “Case of the Week” contest that invites anyone on campus to participate. Organizers post an X-ray image on the club’s bulletin board, in the Advanced Technology & Health Sciences Center’s second-floor, west-wing hallway, across from Room W232. All are invited to play along by identifying the body part and what is exceptional about the image.

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Faculty & Staff Nursing & Health Sciences Radiography

Penn College names director of radiography

Christine L. Eckenrod

Christine L. Eckenrod has been appointed to lead the radiography program at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

Eckenrod began her work as director of radiography at Penn College on Sept. 3.

She brings to the position more than 30 years of experience in the medical imaging field. Before joining Penn College, she was the radiography program director at JFK Muhlenberg Snyder School of Radiography in New Jersey, where she also served as a radiography instructor.

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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.

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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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Mock crisis authentically adds to interdisciplinary preparedness

Samer R. Doss, a PA student from Montoursville, listens to the heartbeat of dental hygiene student Megan P. Fitzsimmons, of Portville, N.Y.

Students from Penn College’s School of Nursing & Health Sciences and School of Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications joined area law enforcement, emergency management and health care professionals in a recent simulation at UPMC Susquehanna Williamsport Regional Medical Center and a variety of other locations.

The college’s paramedic program has participated in the drill since its inception, and this year, the School of Nursing & Health Sciences decided to participate schoolwide to provide an interdisciplinary learning opportunity. The school had conducted its own Interdisciplinary Professional Experience on campus for several years.

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Architectural Technology Art and 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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Nursing & Health Sciences Radiography Students

Routine learning experience leads to remarkable history lesson

Jennifer Nicholson, of Lock Haven, a Pennsylvania College of Technology radiography student and Navy veteran, arranged a visit to the aircraft carrier Intrepid, now a museum in New York, for World War II veteran Robert Grieb after learning about his story during a clinical education experience. Grieb served on the carrier.

A Pennsylvania College of Technology radiography student, finding common ground with a patient she met during a clinical experience at a local hospital, made a trip to New York City that she’ll likely never forget. Nor will the World War II veteran she accompanied.

Jennifer Nicholson, of Lock Haven, learned of the veteran while she was helping with a physician-ordered radiography exam for his son. Penn College radiography students receive their training on campus and in the radiology departments of affiliate hospitals.

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Nursing & Health Sciences Radiography Students

Radiography students support Breast Cancer Awareness Month with ‘Pink Out’

Radiography students sport pink to help support breast cancer awareness and the importance of early detection.
Radiography students sport pink to help support breast cancer awareness and the importance of early detection.

On Oct. 10, in recognition of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, students in Karen L. Plankenhorn’s Pediatric and Trauma Radiography course sported the cause’s emblematic color. According to the American Cancer Society, women have a 1 in 8 chance of developing breast cancer in their lifetimes. Plankenhorn, clinical supervisor for radiography, began the October “Pink Out” tradition several years ago with students in her Introduction to Mammography course. “The class has since been switched to the Spring semester, but I still like to incorporate it into my Fall semester class because I feel strongly about bringing awareness to breast cancer and early detection,” Plankenhorn said.

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School of Nursing & Health Sciences hosts celebration

Pennsylvania College of Technology welcomed several School of Nursing & Health Sciences alumni back to campus to speak at an event celebrating the school’s name change, its academic majors, and milestone anniversaries for two programs: occupational therapy assistant (30 years) and physician assistant (20 years). From left are Megan Wright, ’12, a physician assistant practicing physical medicine and rehabilitation; Brian Webster, ’06, a nurse practitioner specializing in emergency and family nursing; President Davie Jane Gilmour; Sandra L. Richmond, dean of nursing and health sciences; and Michele “Mindy” Tedesco, ’88, a registered occupational therapist specializing in home health care.

The School of Nursing & Health Sciences at Pennsylvania College of Technology held a multifaceted celebration on Oct. 4 by hosting an open house of its facilities and welcoming accomplished alumni, who reflected on how their education has shaped their careers.

“We come together … to celebrate the positive impact all 10 of our nursing and health sciences programs have on our students’ lives, the professions in which they work, and the communities they serve,” said Sandra L. Richmond, dean of nursing and health sciences.

Of particular significance during the celebration was a change to the school’s name: from the School of Health Sciences to the School of Nursing & Health Sciences, and the anniversaries of the occupational therapy assistant program, whose first students graduated 30 years ago, and the physician assistant program, which graduated its first students 20 years ago.

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Alumni Dental Hygiene Faculty & Staff Nursing Nursing & Health Sciences Physician Assistant Radiography Students

Health Sciences Team Owns ‘Breakout’ Session

Conquering the interactive challenge of Williamsport Escapes are (clockwise, from bottom left) Zeel Patel, a pre-nursing student from Bensalem; Long; Traister; Cera N. Blunk, a physician assistant major from Schuylkill Haven; Emily K. Conklin, a pre-dental hygiene student from Port Allegany; and Constance J. Plankenhorn, of Williamsport, enrolled in physician assistant studies.
Conquering the interactive challenge of Williamsport Escapes are (clockwise, from bottom left) Zeel Patel, a pre-nursing student from Bensalem; Long; Traister; Cera N. Blunk, a physician assistant major from Schuylkill Haven; Emily K. Conklin, a pre-dental hygiene student from Port Allegany; and Constance J. Plankenhorn, of Williamsport, enrolled in physician assistant studies.

The Health Sciences Living-Learning Community participated in an activity Friday at Williamsport Escapes, which offers a team-building series of brain games at 201 Basin Street. Tanae A. Traister, clinical director of nursing, and Taren A. (Adams) Long, a 2011 radiography graduate, joined four students as they solved clues that allowed them to break out of the facility’s locker-room area. The group was given 60 minutes to escape and managed to get out with two minutes and 57 seconds to spare! Penn College’s Living-Learning Communities provide themed housing arrangements for first-year residents in a variety of academic majors.
Photo provided

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Veterans’ Holiday Tribute Written in Stars

Regina M. Peluzzo (left), of Philadelphia, a civil engineering technology major, and Jennifer L. Nicholson, an applied health studies: radiography concentration major from Lock Haven, find just the right spot for a special ornament.
Regina M. Peluzzo (left), of Philadelphia, a civil engineering technology major, and Jennifer L. Nicholson, an applied health studies: radiography concentration major from Lock Haven, find just the right spot for a special ornament.
Beaver strung hundreds of stars onto wire for easier decoration this year ...
Beaver strung hundreds of stars onto wire for easier decoration this year …
... and Efrem K. Foster, a nursing student from Williamsport, makes a few adjustments to ensure complete coverage.
… and Efrem K. Foster, a nursing student from Williamsport, makes a few adjustments to ensure complete coverage.
Peluzzo, Nicholson and Foster pause ever so briefly during Thursday's assignment.
Peluzzo, Nicholson and Foster pause ever so briefly during Thursday’s assignment.
With Old Glory providing an apt backdrop for his ascent to the treetop, Haefner adeptly places the final strand of stars.
With Old Glory providing an apt backdrop for his ascent to the treetop, Haefner adeptly places the final strand of stars.

A red, white and blue homage to Penn College’s military family took shape this week outside Madigan Library, where three of the campus’s Veterans Affairs work-study students – along with Chet Beaver, coordinator of veterans/military affairs, and General Services horticulturist Aaron S. Haefner – adorned the Veterans Holiday Tree. This year’s tree is a spruce along the northeast side of the library, a site chosen when a nearby pine that was decorated in each of the past three years was removed due to disease. In addition to colored lights, the tree contains 391 stars (fashioned in the School of Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies) representing the institution’s veterans and active-duty servicemen and women. In addition, the tree showcases three glass balls containing commemorative ribbons purchased during an annual Giving Tree fundraiser for the Fisher House Foundation.