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08.17.2021

House GOP panel holds campus hearing on boosting state’s economy

Bradley M. Webb (left), dean of engineering technologies, discusses plastic pellets during a lab tour with Rep. Barbara Gleim (R-199) and Rep. Martin Causer (R-67), committee chair.
Bradley M. Webb (left), dean of engineering technologies, discusses plastic pellets during a lab tour with Rep. Barbara Gleim (R-199) and Rep. Martin Causer (R-67), committee chair.
Causer is framed by the Baja SAE team's vehicle in the Larry A. Ward Machining Technologies Center.
Causer is framed by the Baja SAE team’s vehicle in the Larry A. Ward Machining Technologies Center.
The tour group moves to a welding lab in the Lycoming Engines Metal Trades Center. At left (in red tie) is Rep. Joe Hamm (R-84), whose district includes part of Lycoming County.
The tour group moves to a welding lab in the Lycoming Engines Metal Trades Center. At left (in red tie) is Rep. Joe Hamm (R-84), whose district includes part of Lycoming County.
Webb leads visitors – including Wheeland (front row, center), the county's other representative – to College Avenue Labs.
Webb leads visitors – including Wheeland (front row, center), the county’s other representative – to College Avenue Labs.
Munro testifies and answers questions about the many ways Penn College addresses workforce challenges, from apprenticeship programs to the Clean Energy Center to WEDnetPA training of companies' employees.
Munro testifies and answers questions about the many ways Penn College addresses workforce challenges, from apprenticeship programs to the Clean Energy Center to WEDnetPA training of companies’ employees.

The state House Majority Policy Committee visited Penn College’s main campus on Tuesday, taking a tour before holding a hearing on “Growing Pennsylvania’s Economy.” Twelve members of the committee, chaired by Rep. Martin Causer, of McKean County – joined remotely by others – heard testimony during the two-hour session in the Thompson Professional Development Center. Among those sharing their expertise were Shannon M. Munro, the college’s vice president for workforce development, characterized by co-host Rep. Jeff Wheeland as “the go-to person” in her field. “Because employers grow the economy, we must respond to their needs,” Munro said. “Penn College does this in two distinct ways: We provide a pipeline of graduates in degrees that align with what employers are looking for, and we also offer lifelong training opportunities for their incumbent workers.”

Apprenticeships Engineering Technologies Faculty & Staff Plastics & Polymer Skills Gap Welding Workforce Development
06.28.2021

Segmented apprenticeships offer flexibility

"The Missing Piece"Modular apprenticeships, characterized by Workforce Development’s executive director for business development as a “missing piece” in the employee training puzzle, are the focus of the second in a series of blog posts about Penn College’s apprenticeship program. “The idea is to take a large apprenticeship program and segment it into modules that focus on common topical areas,” Christopher P. Ray says. “This allows for employees to benefit from the entire upskilling program if needed, or to focus time and effort only on the segments that apply to their areas of responsibility.”

Apprenticeships Faculty & Staff Skills Gap Workforce Development
06.09.2021

Anchor’s up! Apprentice’ship’ blog sets sail

Christopher P. RayPenn College’s proven prominence in helping companies improve their employees’ skills through apprenticeship training is reflected in a new feature of the campus community’s blog. Laying the groundwork for a planned series of insightful posts, author Christopher P. Ray – Workforce Development’s executive director for business development – debuts with a definition of what separates the program from the myriad other “ships” in the workforce world.

Apprenticeships Faculty & Staff Skills Gap Workforce Development
02.12.2021

Workforce Development VP among panelists on skills-gap broadcast

Shannon M. Munro on WVIAPenn College’s vice president for workforce development was among the guests on this week’s “Keystone Edition – Business,” a public affairs program broadcast by the region’s public television affiliate. Shannon M. Munro joined Annette Weiss, assistant dean of nursing and chief nurse administrator at Misericordia University, and Sara Maaske, senior director of product at Penn Foster, on a WVIA-TV panel moderated by host Kris Jones. With Baby Boomers retiring from the skilled trades and a shortage of younger workers to take their places, the panelists brainstormed strategies for addressing the issue. “We go about solving the skills-gap problem at Penn College from multiple directions,” Munro said. “Graduating students that have the skills that are needed in the workforce when they complete, but also helping companies who are continuously needing to train their current workforce because the climate is constantly changing.” She also provided an overview of the college’s far-reaching apprenticeship program, funded by an $8 million U.S. Department of Labor grant and benefiting such companies as First Quality and West Pharmaceutical Services. A replay of the series’ “Trading Up” episode is available through WVIA OnDemand and through WVIA’s Facebook page.

Faculty & Staff Skills Gap Workforce Development
07.27.2020

Penn College ‘manufactures’ educational experience for teachers

With support from the National Science Foundation, Pennsylvania College of Technology recently “manufactured” a weeklong educational experience for 13 high school teachers and school counselors from throughout the state.

The Manufacturing Externship Camp revealed to educators the promising realities of manufacturing careers through several activities, including a robot-building exercise that they can replicate at their home schools. The camp is one of several Penn College initiatives – funded by a grant from the NSF’s Advanced Technological Education program – dedicated to growing the manufacturing workforce.

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Automated Manufacturing & Machining Engineering Technologies Events Faculty & Staff Skills Gap STEM
05.19.2020

Penn College offering new manufacturing certificate

Pennsylvania College of Technology is providing a new pathway for aspiring skilled machinists and computer numerical control operators. The college is accepting applications for its CNC machinist certificate, offered for the first time this fall.

“Industry needs skilled machinists and CNC operators. This program can be completed in nine months, so students can quickly obtain the skills required by industry and get right to work,” said Bradley M. Webb, dean of industrial, computing and engineering technologies.

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Automated Manufacturing & Machining Engineering Technologies General Information Skills Gap
08.13.2019

Penn College manufacturing students to study in Germany    

The National Science Foundation reaffirmed its confidence in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s efforts to combat the manufacturing skills gap by providing a supplemental grant to facilitate study abroad in Germany.

The grant will cover the cost of sending 10 Penn College manufacturing students and two faculty to Germany next summer to receive training at the Eckert International Vocational School and various companies on the cutting edge of computer numerical control and automation technology.

The 16-day trip will include hands-on experiences with tools used in the product development process; software operating milling, turning and multitasking machines; and robotic systems employed in the manufacturing industry.

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Automated Manufacturing & Machining Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Skills Gap STEM Students
05.10.2019

Penn College receives NSF grant to combat skills gap

Unfilled manufacturing jobs through 2028 may total 2.4 million, threatening the health of the industry and the U.S. economy. With help from the National Science Foundation, Pennsylvania College of Technology is addressing that dire skills gap estimated by Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute.

The NSF recently awarded the college a $591,924 grant through its Advanced Technological Education program to increase the number of qualified workers in advanced manufacturing. The money will fund several initiatives during the next three years aimed at students, teachers and school counselors.

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Automated Manufacturing & Machining Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies Skills Gap STEM Students