News about College Transitions

Seasoned Administrator Named to Dean Position at Penn College

Randy J. Zangara

Pennsylvania College of Technology has named Randy J. Zangara dean of college transitions and first year initiatives.

As dean, Zangara is responsible for coordinating and aligning first-year programs and services and the development of a collegewide retention plan. He also oversees the Penn College NOW dual enrollment program; K-12 outreach; new student testing, advising and scheduling; and recruitment and retention of identified populations, including veteran students. Additionally, he oversees all aspects of international programming at the college.

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PPL Gift Supports SMART Girls, Penn College NOW Programs

PPL Electric Utilities representatives Mary Baker (left), a forester for the company, and Tracie Witter, regional affairs director, gather with a team of campers who show off the robot they built during Penn College’s annual SMART Girls summer camp. PPL supported SMART Girls and the college’s dual-enrollment program through a $4,000 donation. Joining the group is Elizabeth A. Biddle (back row), director of corporate relations for the college.

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s SMART Girls summer camp, which encourages high school-aged girls to continue challenging themselves in math and science at an age when many lose interest or confidence, convened last week.

Among supporters of the weeklong program was PPL Electric Utilities. PPL donated $4,000 to the college through the state’s Educational Improvement Tax Credit program. The funds are used to support both SMART Girls and the Penn College NOW dual-enrollment program.

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College Captures ‘Telly’ Award for Informational Video

Thomas F. Speicher

A video promoting a program in which high school students earn college credit garnered honors for Pennsylvania College of Technology in the 39th annual Telly Awards competition, representing the best work from advertising agencies, television stations, production companies and publishers worldwide.

A Bronze Telly in the “Non-Broadcast – General-Information” category went to a news video titled “High Schoolers Earn Free College Credits with Penn College NOW,” which showcased the Penn College NOW dual-enrollment program.

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Spring 2018 Career Day

A student from Midd-West Middle School prepares a mold in a session led by Franklin H. Reber that taught them to make concrete stepping stones.

The College Transitions Office hosted its Spring Career Day on Monday, welcoming 1,283 seventh- to ninth-graders from across northcentral Pennsylvania. Faculty provided more than 40 sessions in Penn College’s labs to help the visitors explore careers and learn about college expectations. Schools attending were Mifflin County Middle School, North Penn-Mansfield Jr./Sr. High School, Cowanesque Valley Junior-Senior High School, North Penn-Liberty Jr./Sr. High School, Milton Middle School, Midd-West Middle School, Jersey Shore Area Middle School and Canton High School.

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Penn College NOW Dual-Enrollment Program Reaccredited

Plastics and polymer engineering technology student Sapphire E. Naugle, who earned 18 Penn College credits while a student at Jersey Shore Area High School, leads a group of Central Mountain High School Penn College NOW students and others through the college’s rotational molding lab.

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Penn College NOW dual-enrollment program – which provided $2.7 million of college credits free to Pennsylvania high school students in 2016-17 – received reaccreditation from the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships, the organization announced on May 2.

Penn College NOW was established by the college in 2005 to provide Penn College courses to high school students at their schools or career and technology centers. In 2011, it became the first dual-enrollment program in the state to receive accreditation from NACEP, the sole national accrediting body for concurrent-enrollment partnerships. Today only two Pennsylvania dual-enrollment programs are nationally accredited.

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Administrator to Present at PDE Workshop on Student Retention

Paul R. Watson II

Paul R. Watson II, dean of academic success at Pennsylvania College of Technology, has been asked to speak at a Pennsylvania Department of Education workshop about best practices for a performance indicator related to student retention or transfer.

Watson will present at the Perkins Central Workshop, to be held April 11 in Harrisburg. The Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Improvement Act of 2006 was enacted to enhance the skills of secondary and postsecondary education students nationwide who enroll in career and technical education programs.

In his presentation, Watson will focus on Perkins performance indicator 3P1, which involves student retention and transfer. Penn College exceeded the statewide performance for the indicator.

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Scientific Success STEMs From Childhood

"SolarQuest" brings our favorite life-sustaining fireball down to Earth.

The pre-spring thaw – 50-plus degrees in the middle of February – sent a veritable Fountain of Youth flowing through campus, as a series of events introduced area girls and boys to a variety of exciting Science, Technology, Engineering and Math activities. On Feb. 15, a Science Festival was held in Bardo Gym and the Field House; two days later, Girl Scouts gathered for a STEM event that included video-game design, and Boy Scouts attended a third annual Merit Badge College across campus.

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Feb. 15 Festival to Excite Young Minds About Science, Careers

A Science Festival, featuring fun, hands-on activities geared to elementary- and middle-school students and their families, is slated for Thursday, Feb 15, in the Pennsylvania College of Technology Field House.

The event, scheduled for 5 to 8 p.m., is offered free to the community by Penn College and the Williamsport/Lycoming Chamber of Commerce.

The Field House will be filled with hands-on activities presented by local organizations that include businesses, high school students, college faculty and students, the Society of Plastics Engineers’ PlastiVan, and the Carnegie Science Center, of Pittsburgh. The event is intended to make learning fun and to stimulate children’s interest in math, science, and exciting careers in related fields.

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First National Bank Gift Supports SMART Girls, Penn College NOW

First National Bank recently provided a gift supporting two Penn College educational programs that serve high school students. From left are Don Breon, assistant vice president/treasury management; Daniel Hooper, vice president/ market manager; and Craig Muthler, senior vice president/commercial banking. From the college are Kyle Smith, executive director of the Penn College Foundation, and Tanya Berfield, manager of college transitions.

Two educational programs that serve high school students will benefit from a recent gift from First National Bank to Pennsylvania College of Technology.

First National Bank representatives recently delivered a $10,000 gift that will help support the college’s SMART Girls and Penn College NOW programs. The contribution was made through Pennsylvania’s Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program.

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Thirteen Students Selected for Penn College NOW Scholarships

Penn College presented scholarships to 13 first-year students who took Penn College NOW courses. From left are Tavor T. Wadsworth, of Williamsport; Vincent R. Keene, of Downingtown; Kayley E. Johnson, of Bloomsburg; Monica A. McCarty, Penn College’s dual enrollment specialist; Michael L. Gardner, of Williamsport; Warren E. Knipe, of Liberty; and Tanya Berfield, the college’s manager of college transitions. Additional recipients not in the photo are: Cheyenne N. Greene, of Jersey Shore; Deontae Z. Johnson, of Selinsgrove; Kylee E. Kelley, of Lock Haven; Tyler W. Miller, of Montgomery; Luke B. Walter, of Millmont; Brittany M. Weiskopff, of Blossburg; Clayton T. Welch, of Benton; and Jeremy M. Wolfgang, of Allenwood.

Pennsylvania College of Technology recently recognized 13 first-year students who received Penn College NOW scholarships.

The recipients completed Penn College courses during high school as part of the college’s Penn College NOW dual-enrollment program. The group was honored during an Oct. 27 reception.

To be eligible, students must have successfully completed at least one Penn College NOW course, have a minimum GPA of 3.0 in Penn College NOW classes, enroll in Penn College as a full-time freshman student for the fall semester after high school graduation, and maintain a 2.5 GPA at Penn College as an enrolled student.

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Administrator Named to Board of National Dual Enrollment Accreditor

Paul R. Watson II

Paul R. Watson II, dean of academic services and college transitions at Pennsylvania College of Technology, has been named to the board of directors of the National Alliance of Concurrent Enrollment Partnerships.

Watson will chair the Governmental Relations Committee for the board. In that capacity, he will be responsible for developing and maintaining a positive image for concurrent enrollment programs and working to strengthen communication with policymaking federal and state governmental agencies.

NACEP, the sole accrediting body for concurrent enrollment partnerships, works to ensure that college courses offered by high school teachers are as rigorous as courses offered on the sponsoring college campus, sharing the latest knowledge about best practices, research and advocacy.

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‘Career Day’ Opens Doors of Exploration for Curious Teens

Automated manufacturing technology student Aren T. Way (right) of Jersey Shore, demonstrates an industrial-scale robot during a session on “Industrial Robotics, Hydraulics and Pneumatics, and CNC Machine Tools.”

More than 900 high schoolers, hailing from 28 school districts, spent Thursday on campus for the College Transitions Office’s Career Day. Faculty and students from all six of the college’s academic schools and all three campuses spent their Fall Break day off providing close to 50 career-exploration sessions for the visitors, exposing them to dozens of the college’s “degrees that work” offerings. A few of the districts traveled as much as two hours to attend. Among the highlights was a half-day session by the Penn College accounting, finance and business administration departments and the Pennsylvania Institute of Certified Public Accountants that featured not only information about Penn College’s technology-laden degrees, but talks by guest speakers Michael Colgan, CEO of PICPA, and Joseph Siebert, president of PICPA, about future work in these fields as firms must protect clients’ financial information, and accountants can aid investigations via “forensic accounting.” Following the presentations and a Q&A with a panel of Penn College accounting and finance students, the 200 high school participants attended an etiquette lunch in the Field House.

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Last updated October 13, 2017 | Posted in Business & Hospitality, College Transitions, Construction & Design Technologies, Events, Faculty & Staff, Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies, Nursing & Health Sciences, Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications, Students, Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies | This gallery contains 19 photos. | Tagged as |

High Schoolers Earn Free College Credit With Penn College NOW

High school students in Pennsylvania can earn free college credits by participating in the Penn College NOW dual-enrollment program, detailed in a new video on the college’s YouTube Channel. Partner schools provide a wide range of Penn College courses for students to jump-start their collegiate experience. The nationally accredited program features Penn College courses taught by approved teachers in a student’s home school or career and technology center. “I wish I was able to go into every single high school and just grab a hold of those kids and say, ‘Listen, you need to take these classes. They’re essentially free college credits,” says Sapphire E. Naugle, a plastics and polymer engineering technology student from Jersey Shore. “Once I did one class, I was like, ‘Wow, I don’t know why I waited so long to take these.’ And, throughout my junior and senior year, I took almost all Penn College classes.”

STEM Careers Take Flight With SMART Girls

With the help of the Carnegie Science Center’s Mobile Fab Lab, Penn College’s SMART Girls program recently introduced 40 high schoolers to enriching careers in science, technology, engineering and math. The girls met the Quadcopter Challenge as they designed and built their own quadcopters to navigate an obstacle course. That process and related activities opened their eyes to vocational possibilities, flouting the “ridiculous” convention that young women lack the interest or ability to succeed in STEM fields. “If they just ignore those cultural norms of whatever they should be doing or anything like that, they are going to be doing what they are supposed to be doing, which is designing machinery, doing biomechanical engineering, doing mechanical engineering,” said Jon Doctorick, the mobile laboratory’s education coordinator.

Newswatch 16 Visits SMART Girls Showcase

WNEP on campus

Newswatch 16’s Kristina Papa stopped by the Penn College Field House for Friday’s SMART Girls Showcase, the culminating event of the Science and Math in Real-world Technologies summer program. Papa interviewed Tanya Berfield, manager of college transitions, and some of the campers, whose weeklong adventures included career exploration and a Quadcopter Challenge.

Pennsylvania College of Technology is a special mission affiliate of The Pennsylvania State University