News about Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies

Roll-Fed Thermoformer Adds to Center of Excellence at College

Christopher J. Gagliano, program manager for Penn College’s Thermoforming Center of Excellence, operates the new equipment.

A custom-built, roll-fed, thin-sheet thermoformer is the latest addition to the Thermoforming Center of Excellence at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

Thermoforming is a process by which plastic film or sheet is heated and then molded into three-dimensional shapes for such everyday uses as packaging, displays and components for a variety of transportation applications. The new equipment is a semi-commercial scale thermoforming machine that feeds rolls of plastic film into the thermoformer to produce and duplicate multiple formed packaging techniques used in industry.

According to Christopher J. Gagliano, program manager, Thermoforming Center of Excellence, “This equipment expands Penn College’s capability, which already includes a heavy-gauge thermoformer, to support additional (research-and-development) projects and teach incumbent workers and students using the latest technology.”

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Department of Commerce Invests in College’s Welding Expansion

A $2 million federal grant from the Economic Development Administration will help Penn College expand its welding facilities and increase the number of students enrolled in welding majors at the college.

The U.S. Department of Commerce has recognized Pennsylvania College of Technology’s vital contribution to the skilled workforce with a $2 million grant earmarked for expanding the college’s Avco-Lycoming Metal Trades Center.

The Economic Development Administration grant, combined with a $3 million match from the college, will approximately double the size of welding instructional space to more than 40,000 square feet and support an additional 60 students annually. There are currently about 350 welding students at Penn College.

“We are honored to be awarded this grant that will facilitate expansion of one of our most popular programs,” said Paul L. Starkey, vice president for academic affairs/provost. “For generations, our welding department has produced graduates essential to the manufacturing workforce. Today, the need for skilled technical workers is acute. The grant ensures that more students will be given the opportunity to earn rewarding careers and fill that void. I’m thankful for the staff and faculty who worked very hard to make the possibility of expansion a reality.”

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International Expertise Abounds at Rotomolding Workshop

Matthew Jackson, of Tennant Co., Minneapolis, a participant in a recent Rotational Molding Workshop at Penn College, attaches a radio telemetry system to a rotational mold to measure internal air temperature.

Scores of industry professionals gathered at Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Plastics Innovation & Resource Center this summer for advice about rotational molding from well-versed – and well-traveled – authorities in the field.

A total of 42 participants from 26 companies – representing 16 states, as well as Canada and Mexico – attended the ninth annual Hands-On Rotational Molding Workshop on the college’s main campus in June.

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Penn College Extrusion Workshop Proves Popular

Adam C. Barilla, instructor of plastics and polymer technology at Penn College, demonstrates tensile testing to participants during the 19th annual Extrusion Seminar & Hands-On Workshop at the college’s Plastics Innovation & Resource Center. (Photo by Tia G. La, student photographer)

Nationwide plastics industry professionals converged at Pennsylvania College of Technology’s renowned Plastics Innovation & Resource Center for the 19th Annual Extrusion Seminar & Hands-On Workshop.

Forty-three participants, representing 20 companies and nine states, attended the three-day event led by extrusion experts Chris Rauwendaal and Kirk M. Cantor. Rauwendaal is president of Rauwendaal Extrusion Engineering Inc. in Auburn, California; Cantor is a professor of plastics and polymer technology at Penn College. Combined, the duo has approximately 70 years of experience in plastics.

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Penn College Plastics Student Honored With SPE Scholarship

Logan A. Tate

A Pennsylvania College of Technology plastics student is one of three nationwide recipients of a scholarship from the Society of Plastics Engineers Thermoforming Division.

Logan A. Tate, of Williamsport, received the Thermoforming Division Memorial Scholarship, worth $2,500. The honor also includes an invitation to the 26th SPI Thermoforming Conference from Sept. 11-13 in Orlando, Florida, where he will be recognized at the Thermoforming Awards Dinner.

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Foundation Establishes Endowed Scholarship at Penn College

Debra M. Miller, college relations advisor at Penn College, accepts a Herman O. West Foundation grant from Dave Lanzer, director of operations at West Pharmaceutical Services Inc. The grant will be used to establish an endowed scholarship at the college.

The foundation for a global manufacturer is recognizing Pennsylvania College of Technology’s commitment to the skilled workforce with an endowed scholarship at the school.

The Herman O. West Foundation awarded a $100,000 grant to Penn College to establish the scholarship. Named in honor of the founder of West Pharmaceuticals Services Inc., the foundation has supported employees through scholarships and matching gift programs since 1972.

West Pharmaceutical Services is a leading manufacturer of packaging components and delivery systems for injectable drugs and health care products. The company has manufacturing plants throughout the world, including Williamsport and Jersey Shore.

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Eight Penn College Students Medal in National Competition

SkillsUSA

Eight students from the widest variety of academic majors ever to represent Pennsylvania College of Technology at the National Leadership and Skills Conference returned home with medals – including first-time successes in three competitive areas.

The contingent took one of three top places in five categories, and this year marked the first time that Penn College entrants medaled in Computer Programming, TeamWorks and Welding Sculpture.

“This really goes to show how well-prepared the students are from their respective fields and how great our instructors are here at the college. This is, by far, the most diverse group of students I’ve had go to the national competition,” said SkillsUSA adviser James N. Colton II, an assistant professor of welding. “The national skills competition gives us a chance to showcase our technical skills and show everyone why we’re a leader in applied technology.”

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Grant for Welding Expansion OK’d Pending Award, Conditions

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s welding program could be in line for expansion, pending award of a $2 million federal grant and the college satisfying various conditions associated with the funding.

The Penn College Board of Directors approved acceptance of the grant – from the Economic Development Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce – provided it is awarded to the college, and all of its conditions are met.

If awarded, the EDA grant would require a cash match of $3 million, allowing the college to expand its welding facility by 22,000 square feet.

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College’s Baja Team Finds Victory, Validation in Illinois

Team members standing in front of a massive Caterpillar D11 bulldozer manufactured nearby are (from left) Mark A. Turek, Travis Scholtz, Darian P. Trego, Shujaa AlQahtani, Trevor M. Clouser, Logan B. Goodhart, Nathan M. Eckstein, Johnathan T. Capps, John D. Kleinfelter, Matthew J. Nyman and Clinton R. Bettner. Not pictured are Michael A. Oldroyd-Costello and faculty adviser John G. Upcraft.

Capps drives the #93 car to another commanding Penn College finish.

Penn College’s Baja SAE team turned in another fifth-place performance during an endurance competition in Illinois on Saturday, duplicating last month’s impressive effort in Kansas and finishing a personal-best ninth in the overall standings. “We had another flawless race,” said John G. Upcraft, instructor of manufacturing and machining and adviser for the college’s Baja SAE Club. “The team is pretty darned happy!” (The top four endurance teams were San Diego State University, the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, the University of Akron and Oregon State University, respectively.) Not that there weren’t issues. The mud that marked the Pittsburg, Kansas, race was replaced by heavy winds and dust at the Caterpillar Edwards Demonstration and Learning Center in Peoria. What’s more, the transponders didn’t work during the live stream, causing an inaccurate leaderboard until the manual trackside count properly credited the team for all 59 of its laps. “But we didn’t wreck and nothing on the car broke. And for the first year,  some top teams told my guys what a good job they’re doing. This is a real engineering competition, and we haven’t always been as strong as we’d like in that area; we’re slowly getting there, and people are recognizing us as a top team.” On the basis of its finish, Penn College wins entry to the first race of next season. The college will be represented by the No. 9 car at Baja SAE Maryland, scheduled for April 26-29 at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Watch PCToday for more on the Baja SAE team’s phenomenal finale to its season.
Photos provided

Penn College Records Top-5 Finish in Global Off-Road Race

Members of the Penn College team proudly pose with their car after finishing fifth out of 107 schools in the four-hour endurance race at Baja SAE Kansas. From left are: John G. Upcraft, faculty adviser; Logan B. Goodhart, of Chambersburg; Mark A. Turek, of Red Lion; Jonathan R. Sutcliffe, of Orangeville; Matthew J. Nyman, of Lock Haven; Johnathan T. Capps, of North Wales; Trevor M. Clouser, of Millmont; Shujaa AlQahtani, of Saudi Arabia; Darian P. Trego, of Mifflinburg; and Clinton R. Bettner, of Beaver Falls.

A determined group of Pennsylvania College of Technology students overcame the elements and 100-plus other schools for a strong showing in the marquee event of a renowned international competition.

Penn College placed fifth out of 107 teams in the four-hour endurance race at Baja SAE Kansas. The Society of Automotive Engineers event in Pittsburg, Kansas, required students to design and build a single-seat, off-road vehicle to survive various performance challenges.

“Things could not have gone better. I am happy for the students. All their hard work paid off,” said John G. Upcraft, instructor of manufacturing and machining and adviser for the college’s Baja SAE Club. “For a new car – with a new drivetrain and a new driver – and nothing broke, I’m quite pleased how things ended up.”

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Last updated May 31, 2017 | Posted in Automated Manufacturing & Machining, Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies, Students | This gallery contains 8 photos. | Tagged as | One Comment

Cross-Campus Collaboration Infuses Hundreds of Visiting Pupils

Horticulture instructor Carl J. Bower Jr. guides Warrior Run fourth-graders in a sensory exploration of the ESC’s plant life.

Roy A. Fletcher, assistant professor of business administration/banking and finance, talks with Stock Market Challenge participants from area high schools about the future of artificial intelligence in accounting. The School of Business & Hospitality hosted the grand finale celebration for the Stock Market Challenge, an annual competition for Lycoming County high schools and middle schools that is sponsored by the Williamsport Sun-Gazette.

Faculty members (and Penn College grads) Michael K. Patterson, welding lecturer, center, and Benjamin K. Myers, welding instructor, right, judge a competition among students enrolled in Penn College NOW welding courses. While their teachers attended professional development with Penn College faculty liaisons – a requirement to ensure that Penn College courses taught at high schools meet the same rigor as those taught on campus – the students showed their skill in shielded metal arc welding. Following the contest, they took part in a hands-on demonstration by Fronius USA, which has entrusted several pieces of equipment to the college.

In the closing weeks of the spring semester, the College Transitions Office and academic schools hosted more than half a dozen events for pupils in area elementary, middle and high schools. From a field trip for Warrior Run fourth-graders that spanned the main campus and Schneebeli Earth Science Center, to days set aside for students to visit the college labs that correspond with their Penn College NOW courses, hundreds of students received hands-on lessons in “degrees that work,” thanks to help from college faculty. Events for Penn College NOW students included a Horticulture Day, engineering design visit, Accounting Day, Web Page Design Day and Welding Day.

Presidential Road Trip Ensures Wildcats’ Spot in Grad Lineup

Evan M. Woods (left) and Kyle H. Fox receive their diplomas Sunday from President Davie Jane Gilmour.

Two Penn College baseball players, unable to attend commencement due to North Eastern Athletic Conference playoffs in Lewisburg, were awarded their diplomas prior to Sunday’s championship game. President Davie Jane Gilmour traveled to Bucknell University’s Depew Field, where the Wildcats –  including catcher Evan M. Woods, of Clymer, New York, and pitcher/infielder Kyle H. Fox, of Fleetwood – were set to take on Penn State Berks in the tournament finale. Woods graduated with high honors and an associate degree in heating, ventilation and air conditioning technology; Fox graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in manufacturing engineering technology.
Photo by Elliott Strickland, chief student affairs officer 

Teaching Awards Presented to Trio of Penn College Faculty

Three Pennsylvania College of Technology faculty members were honored at Spring 2017 Commencement ceremonies for their teaching prowess. Their awards were presented May 12-13 at the Community Arts Center.

As part of the Distinguished Teaching Awards program at Penn College, President Davie Jane Gilmour presented a Veronica M. Muzic Master Teacher Award to J.D. Mather, assistant professor of engineering design technology.

Two faculty members received Excellence in Teaching Awards: Nicholas L. Stephenson, instructor of graphic design, and Mary G. Trometter, assistant professor of hospitality management/culinary arts.

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Five Students Receive Scholarships Through Gene Haas Foundation

A grant from the Gene Haas Foundation allowed Penn College to provide scholarships to five students in manufacturing-related majors. From left are recipients Trevor M. Clouser, a manufacturing engineering technology student from Millmont; Cole R. Yost, a manufacturing engineering technology student from Sugarloaf; Matthew R. Swartz, a manufacturing engineering technology student from West Hartford, Connecticut; Joseph A. Eirmann, a machine tool technology student from Bellefonte; and Hunter M. Zill, an automated manufacturing technology student from Hanover, with Richard K. Hendricks, instructor of machine tool technology/automated manufacturing.

Five students in manufacturing-related majors are the beneficiaries of a $20,000 grant from the Gene Haas Foundation to Pennsylvania College of Technology.

The foundation, established in 1999 by the owner of Haas Automation Inc., furnishes scholarship grants to institutions that provide education and training in CNC (computer-numeric controlled) machining.

Penn College selected five students to receive scholarships of $4,000 for the 2016-17 academic year. Requirements were full-time enrollment in one of the college’s four automated manufacturing and machining majors, and demonstrated financial need.

The recipients are Trevor M. Clouser, a manufacturing engineering technology student from Millmont; Joseph A. Eirmann, a machine tool technology student from Bellefonte; Matthew R. Swartz, a manufacturing engineering technology student from West Hartford, Connecticut; Cole R. Yost, a manufacturing engineering technology student from Sugarloaf; and Hunter M. Zill, an automated manufacturing technology student from Hanover.

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Penn College Welding Faculty Member Honored

Timothy S. Turnbach (left), an instructor of welding at Penn College, receives the Howard E. Adkins Memorial Instructor Section Award from Michael S. Sebergandio, American Welding Society District 3 director, during a recent ceremony at the college.

The Central Pennsylvania Section of the American Welding Society has honored a Pennsylvania College of Technology faculty member.

Timothy S. Turnbach, instructor of welding, recently received the Howard E. Adkins Memorial Instructor Section Award during a ceremony at the college. The award recognizes “quality instructional performance devoted to the promotion and expansion of welding skills and knowledge.”

Michael S. Sebergandio, AWS District 3 director and a 2003 welding and fabrication engineering technology graduate of the college, presented Turnbach with the award.

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