Skip to main content
Main Penn College Website
Alumni Building Construction Construction & Design Technologies Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies

Penn College Alums Engineer Inspiration at Sight & Sound Theatre

Penn College alums Jeffrey T. Feeman and Franklin N. Carr enhance the experience of thousands of spectators every year at Sight & Sound Theatre in Lancaster, which offers the largest faith-based live productions in the United States and is one of the nation’s top three theatrical destinations. Feeman, a 2013 industrial design graduate, serves the theater as a scenic drafter, while Carr, who earned three building construction-related certificates in 2007 and 2008, is a scenic architect. Both are very thankful that their education led to such fulfilling careers. “You know at the end of the day that the show you made, whatever part you had in that show, is eventually changing lives,” Feeman says in a video added to the college’s YouTube channel. “You know at the end of the day that what you are doing does matter.” Co-worker Carr is equally enthusiastic about his Penn College-born career: “Here at the theater, designing it on the computer and seeing it put together in reality up on the shop floor is really cool.”(Watch for more in the Fall 2018 issue of Penn College Magazine.)

Building Construction Civil Engineering & Surveying Construction & Design Technologies Faculty & Staff Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Students

Penn College Racks Up Successes at Home Builders’ Show

Penn College was one of five recipients of a National Housing Endowment grant, which was formally awarded during the 2018 National Association of Home Builders International Builders’ Show in Orlando, Fla. Accepting the check are (from left) instructor Levon A. Whitmyer; students Hayden N. Beiter, of Williamsport; Michael J. Deragon, of Fort Washington; Caleb M. Burk, of Sunbury; Nathaniel M. Barbolish, of Nicholson; Aaron F. White, of Westover; Ryan Z. Zwickle, of Slatington; Justin W. Bates, of Hawley; Casey L. Grim, of Red Lion; Henry A. Rainey, of Jersey Shore; Katherine L. Mertes, of Williamsport; and Hanna J. Williams, of Marion, N.Y.; and instructor Barney A. Kahn IV.

Orlando, Florida, was fertile ground for Pennsylvania College of Technology this season: Students, alumni and faculty all returned in triumph from an international builders’ show held at the Orange County Convention Center.

For starters, the college was presented with a $73,838 Homebuilding Education Leadership Program grant – the culmination of a yearlong effort led by building construction technology instructor Levon A. Whitmyer, with support from instructor Barney A. Kahn IV and Carol A. Lugg, now dean of construction and design technologies.

Read more

Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Students

Penn College Industrial Design Major Studies in Japan

Dwight D. Alexander

A Pennsylvania College of Technology student was one of 20 scholars worldwide to participate in a Japan-based industrial design program.

Dwight D. Alexander, of Umatilla, Florida, completed a four-day workshop at the Kobe University International Innovation Design School in Kobe, Japan. Students from the United States, Poland and Japan attended the program, which required participants to design an innovative product and evaluate how the product will enhance future society.

“It was an adventure. I wanted to go to make more connections, meet new people,” said Alexander, who is scheduled to graduate in December with an industrial design bachelor’s degree. “I can build off of what I learned there and apply it here, where we learn the techniques and technology to transform ideas into practical designs.”

Read more

Alumni Events Faculty & Staff General Information Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Students

Colloquium Panel Explores Cross-Cultural Access to Medical Care

The panelists underscore their presentation with thoughtful responses to audience feedback.

Millions around the world are suffering the symptoms of serious or terminal illnesses, yet only one in 10 has access to effective pain management tools.

Three local experts teamed to explore what tools might be used to extend palliative care to areas within the United States and beyond that have few resources, presenting their findings during the latest edition of the Technology & Society Colloquia Series.

Thomas E. Ask, professor of industrial design at Pennsylvania College of Technology; Dr. John Boll, associate director of the Williamsport Family Medical Residency at UPMC Susquehanna; and Dr. Alexander Nesbitt, UPMC Susquehanna’s medical director for Susquehanna Hospice, Supportive and Palliative Care and Gatehouse Inpatient Hospice Unit, presented “Medical Care on the Edge: Redesigning Care Across Cultures” in the Klump Academic Center Auditorium on Tuesday.

Read more

Faculty & Staff Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Sports Students

Resilient Student Achieves Goal With John Deere Position

“I just knew this was where I was supposed to be,” Hanna J. Williams says of Penn College, which attracted her through small class sizes and personal interaction with faculty and fellow students. (Photo by Tia G. La, student photographer)

Approximately 200 employers greeted the sophomore at her first Pennsylvania College of Technology career fair. As an industrial design major, the student could approach numerous companies representing all economic sectors. But her focus was the booth decked out in yellow and green, the iconic colors of John Deere.

Hanna J. Williams fell in love with John Deere tractors while growing up on her family’s 800-acre produce farm in Marion, New York. She dreamed of working at the company responsible for the equipment that made her father’s hard farm work a bit easier.

At the career fair, she planned to take the first step to making that dream a reality. She clutched her impressive resume and confidently approached the John Deere booth. Anticipation quickly turned to dejection when company representatives informed her they were recruiting only welding majors.

“They didn’t want anything to do with me,” she recalled.

Crushed, Williams walked away from the booth … but not her dream. “I had to go back,” she said. “This is what I really wanted.”

Read more

Alumni Aviation Construction & Design Technologies Construction Management Forestry Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Sports Students Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies

WTI Reunion Takes Grads on Round Trip Through History

Enjoying the Aviation Center surroundings are John Hertel, (left) ’48, agricultural equipment and repair, and ‘49, electric and acetylene welding, and Ralph Mills, ’58, plumbing.

The Lumley Aviation Center proved to be a popular venue for Friday’s 17th annual reunion for graduates of Williamsport Technical Institute, a Penn College predecessor from 1941-65. Alumni and their guests, totaling about 75 attendees, enjoyed swapping stories, savoring lunch and listening to remarks by President Davie Jane Gilmour. Presentations on forestry, industrial design, athletics and veterans affairs were also on the agenda. Forest technology students Nicholas J. Fedele and Nancy M. Summers shared their passions for the major, as did Erich R. Doebler, laboratory assistant for forest technology. Discussing exciting activities in industrial design were students Dwight D. Alexander, Sean P. Christy and Brett F. Warkoski, and their professor, Thomas E. Ask. Offering insights into the college’s evolving athletics efforts were John D. Vandevere, director of athletics; Lauren S. Herr, a women’s soccer student-athlete enrolled in construction management; and Chris H. Howard, head baseball coach. Chet Beaver, financial aid specialist for veterans services, detailed progress of the Penn College Patriot Scholarship and introduced student veterans on hand to assist with luncheon logistics. Following lunch, Walter V. Gower, assistant dean for transportation and natural resources technologies, took participants on a tour of the hangar, where many reveled in viewing aviation equipment and chatting with students performing various tasks on the tarmac.

Read more

Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Students

College Students Help Schoolchildren ‘Tinker’ With STEM Concepts

Mentoring a pupil in Williamsport's West End
Mentoring a pupil in Williamsport’s West End
A meeting of the minds
A meeting of the minds
A robot is maneuvered through a cup-lined hallway.
A robot is maneuvered through a cup-lined hallway.
Creativity takes a front seat.
Creativity takes a front seat.

Students from Penn College’s Society of Inventors and Mad Scientists recently worked with Jackson Primary School kindergartners to third-graders, helping them explore the world of design and invention in the school’s “Tinker Town.” Launched in 2014 through a $1,500 mini-grant from the Williamsport Area School District Education Foundation, the after-school program provides a hands-on environment that challenges children to think creatively and critically while exploring science, technology, engineering and math. “The students did a great job of playing with the kids and helping them use their discovery toys,” said Thomas E. Ask, industrial design professor and club adviser. Taking part were industrial design majors Sean P. Christy, of Coatesville; Meghan J. Herman, of Jersey Shore; Anthony D. Sipe, of York; and Samantha M. Via, of Williamsport.
Photos by Lynne E. Piotrowski, Title I reading specialist, Williamsport Area School District

Architectural Technology Building Construction Civil Engineering & Surveying Construction & Design Technologies Faculty & Staff Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Students

Students Perform Well in Prestigious Builders’ Competition

Members of the two- and four-year Penn College teams gather outside the International Builders’ Show in Orlando. From left are Carlos Rojas, Williamsport; Nicholas D. Gieger, Dingmans Ferry; Chad W. Hawkins, Williamsport; Robert G. Jackson III, Butler; Casey L. Grim, Red Lion; Hanna J. Williams, Marion, N.Y.; Everett B. Appleby, Wilkes-Barre; Jordan M. Scott, Cogan Station; Lindsay A. Lane, McKean; Ryan Z. Zwickle, Slatington; and Liam R. McGarvey, Cogan Station.

A pair of teams comprising students from construction-related programs at Pennsylvania College of Technology admirably met the challenge of competition at the recent National Association of Home Builders International Builders’ Show in Orlando, Florida.

A team representing associate-degree majors placed fifth in a field of 15 entrants from across the country in the Residential Construction Management Competition, and their colleagues from bachelor-degree majors finished 16th out of 35 institutions.

“The teams worked all of the fall semester on the problems given to them,” said Levon A. Whitmyer, instructor of building construction technology, noting that competition preparation is undertaken 100-percent outside of students’ class time. “The problems typically are future, real-world projects within the construction industry.”

Read more

Architectural Technology Art and Graphic Design Aviation Baking, Pastry & Culinary Arts Business & Hospitality Construction & Design Technologies Corporate Relations Emergency Management General Information Health Information Technology Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Nursing & Health Sciences Plastics & Polymer Scholarships Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies

Foundation’s Generosity Endows Scholarship, Creates Opportunity

A significant grant from the Tamaqua-based John E. Morgan Foundation will allow students from that area to enroll in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s distinctive “degrees that work.”

The nonprofit foundation’s $500,000 contribution establishes the John E. Morgan Scholarship, which will give first preference to graduates of Tamaqua Area High School who are pursuing “a degree that is not readily available from other institutions, at a comparable price, within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.”

Read more

Events Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Students

Turning Castoffs Into Couture

Mahaffey (left) joins her runway entourage: Samantha M. Via, Jasmin Vega, Meghan J. Herman and Alexandra Pyda. Pyda is a nursing major; the others are enrolled in industrial design.
Mahaffey (left) joins her runway entourage: Samantha M. Via, Jasmin Vega, Meghan J. Herman and Alexandra Pyda. Pyda is a nursing major; the others are enrolled in industrial design.
Thomas E. Ask, industrial design professor, and Via's mother, Rona, check out the "trashion" accessories.
Thomas E. Ask, industrial design professor, and Via’s mother, Rona, check out the “trashion” accessories.
A voguish Vega strikes a pose ...
A voguish Vega strikes a pose …
... and designer and model have fun with fashion.
… and designer and model have fun with fashion.

The “Trashion Fashion Show,” industrial design student Ashley E. Mahaffey’s senior project with a (re)purpose, was a clear crowd-pleaser in Penn College’s Thompson Professional Development Center. The Hughesville resident crafted clothing and accessories from discarded newspapers, magazines and the like, enlisting four friends to model them and eliciting considerable applause as each was unveiled. “Ashley was very happy with the results and very brave in embarking on a project like this,” said Thomas E. Ask, professor of industrial design and Mahaffey’s capstone adviser. “She had great assistance by an industry expert, Valerie Beggs, and put tons of energy, enthusiasm and intellect into the project.”
Photos by Tia G. La, student photographer

 

Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Students

Penn College Industrial Design Student Excels in Industry Setting

Jasmin Vega

The inquisitive, hard-working student faced a dilemma when pondering college. She possessed considerable artistic talent, yet loved to study people and the reasons behind their actions. Confronted with the career-path choice, she picked psychology over art and enrolled at a community college.

A year later, the student decided to scrap her psychology track and bridge her disparate interests by transferring to Pennsylvania College of Technology as an industrial design major.

If her performance at a recent internship is an accurate gauge, Jasmin Vega made the right decision.

Vega – a Clifton, New Jersey, native, who resides in nearby Woodland Park – excelled interning for IBC Shell Packaging in Lake Success, New York. The company designs, engineers and manufactures packaging, displays and giftware for global brands, including many in the luxury, spirits and beauty sectors.

Read more

Events Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Students

Penn College Student Transforms Trash to Fashion for Show

Penn College of industrial design major Ashley E. Mahaffey, of Hughesville, works on transforming trash into fashion as part of her senior capstone project. Her efforts will culminate in a free, public showcase, “Trashion Fashion Show,” on Nov. 30 at 6 p.m. in the college’s Thompson Professional Development Center.

A Pennsylvania College of Technology student’s ability to transform trash to fashion will be showcased for the public on Nov. 30 at 6 p.m. in the college’s Thompson Professional Development Center.

The “Trashion Fashion Show” is a free event devised by industrial design student Ashley E. Mahaffey, of Hughesville, as part of her senior capstone project.

“This show is intended to be evocative, to promote the upcycling lifestyle, which repurposes materials that no longer have use,” said Thomas E. Ask, professor of industrial design and Mahaffey’s capstone adviser. “Ashley is expressing design of three-dimensional forms as fashion. She has a longtime interest in fashion.”

Read more

Art and Graphic Design Engineering Design Technology Faculty & Staff Industrial Design Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Information Technology Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications Students

Penn College Students, Faculty Attend ‘Women in Technology’ Event

Female students and faculty from Penn College demonstrated their commitment to technology at the recent College to Careers: Women in Technology Conference in Harrisburg.

More than 25 female students and faculty from Pennsylvania College of Technology demonstrated their commitment to technology by attending a recent statewide event in Harrisburg.

During the College to Careers: Women in Technology Conference, the Penn College contingent experienced a panel discussion with eight women technology leaders and enjoyed networking opportunities.

“It was a very valuable experience for our students,” said Bradley M. Webb, assistant dean of the School of Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies, who helped organize Penn College’s participation. “The students were able to not only listen to, but also interact with many impressive women in technology. The conference reinforced that gender should never be a barrier to success in technology-focused careers.”

Read more

Art and Graphic Design Civil Engineering & Surveying Construction & Design Technologies Events Industrial Design Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications

High School Students Celebrate STEM Day at Penn College

Penn College student Shawn L. Sheeley Jr., of Kersey, shows a high school student how to use surveying equipment. The hands-on workshop was part of a National STEM Day celebration at the college that brought homeschoolers and students from four area high schools to campus.

A group of 90 high-schoolers spent Nov. 8 at Pennsylvania College of Technology, where they explored a variety of careers as part of National STEM Day.

“STEM” is short for science, technology, engineering and math. According to the Population Reference Bureau, U.S. policymakers watch trends in the science and engineering labor force because high-tech workers increase our capacity for innovation and ability to compete in the global economy.

Penn College’s STEM Day activities were designed to give high school students a hands-on glimpse of some in-demand STEM-related careers.

Read more