News about Collision Repair & Restoration

Senator From York County Tours Penn College Campus

President Davie Jane Gilmour escorts Sen. Wagner through the welding labs with the assistance of welding students Thomas (“TJ”) J. Sneeringer (in red) and Joseph (“Joey”) M. Taylor, both of Hanover.

Wagner discusses his waste-management and trucking businesses with diesel technology students alongside a diesel truck outside College Avenue Labs.

In the automotive restoration lab, the senators listen to insights shared by Vanessa Mathurin, of Philadelphia, and Sean M. Hunter, of Livingston, N.J. The students are automotive restoration technology graduates enrolled in applied management.

Touring the extrusion lab, Elizabeth A. Biddle, director of corporate relations, discusses the specialties of the plastics and polymer engineering technology major and the Plastics Innovation & Resource Center.

Sen. Scott Wagner, who represents the 28th District, comprising most of York County, toured the Pennsylvania College of Technology campus on Thursday as the guest of Sen. Gene Yaw, chairman of the college’s Board of Directors. Wagner, who is president and owner of York-based Penn Waste Inc. and KBS Trucking, Thomasville, is a declared candidate for governor. While on campus, he toured the labs for welding, automotive restoration/collision repair and plastics. Wagner once studied at Penn College’s immediate predecessor institution, Williamsport Area Community College, in the diesel program. In the Senate, Wagner chairs the Local Government Committee and is vice chairman of the Labor & Industry Committee. He also sits on the Appropriations, Transportation and Intergovernmental Operations committees.

State Legislators Tour Campus Labs

Jacob T. Motley (far right), an automotive restoration technology student from West Chester, offers an overview of the work being performed on a 1972 Rolls-Royce Silver Shadow.

Faculty member Roy H. Klinger talks with (from left) college President Davie Jane Gilmour and Sens. Yaw, Eichelberger and Aument.

Automotive restoration technology major John A. Cheung (right), of Englishtown, N.J., greets the group alongside a 1935 Rolls-Royce 20/25 in the paint bay.

Brett D. Krum (in gray shirt), a restoration student from Bloomsburg, offers details about a 1909 Chalmers.

The senators enjoy checking out a replica of a 1902 Rambler.

Two state senators came to Penn College on Monday, visiting several curricular areas as a guest of Sen. Gene Yaw, their colleague and chairman of the college’s board of directors. Sens. John Eichelberger, R-Blair Township, and Ryan Aument, R-Landisville, enjoyed lunch in Le Jeune Chef Restaurant and toured Madigan Library and instructional space dedicated to 3-D printing, automotive restoration and aviation. Eichelberger and Aument are chairman and vice chairman, respectively, of the Senate Education Committee (among other legislative assignments).

Restoration Alum’s Business Plan Merits $5,000 Boost

Carmen Cicioni

A 2014 alumnus of Penn College’s automotive restoration technology major was awarded $5,000 this month in a “Shark Tank”-style entrepreneurial event at Penn State Schuykill. Carmen Cicioni, a partner with his father in Car Men Restorations in Ringtown, was one of two presenters to receive the maximum amount in the campus’s inaugural Business Plan Competition. Ten teams vied for seed money to grow or start their small businesses in the contest; seven of them received $1,000 to $5,000 for their inventive ideas.  A number of the participants had attended a 10-week LionLaunch Boot Camp, which offered tips in such areas such as marketing, finance and business law. Each team pitched its idea for four to six minutes, followed by a brief question-and-answer session with a panel of judges. “Overall from start to finish, I had a great experience with the LionLaunch program hosted by Penn State Schuylkill,” Cicioni said. “It was the perfect opportunity as a local entrepreneur and startup business to further develop and put my vision and goals into action.” More information is available on the Penn State Schuylkill website.

National Publication Tours College’s Career-Making Labs

The visiting journalist observes manufacturing engineering technology majors - and SAE Baja teammates - Logan B. Goodhart (left), of Chambersburg, and Jonathan R. Sutcliffe, of Orangeville.

Students learn under the banner of Fronius USA, which has generously entrusted Penn College with equipment to benefit hundreds of welding majors this academic year.

Faculty member Roy H. Klinger gives Carlson a tour of the college's automotive restoration labs.

Elsewhere in College Avenue Labs, the guest gets faculty feedback from J.D. Mather, assistant professor of engineering design technology ...

... and Richard K. Hendricks Jr., instructor of automated manufacturing and machining.

Amanda Carlson, associate editor of Practical Welding Today magazine, visited campus on Wednesday for an upcoming story focusing on how colleges are preparing students for modern manufacturing careers. Carlson toured several college labs, including machining, advanced manufacturing, rapid prototyping and welding.  She also spent time talking with faculty and staff and members of the college’s SAE Baja team. It’s anticipated that Carlson’s story incorporating her Penn College experience will appear in the May/June issue of the publication.

Holiday Happenstance Puts College Card Into Grad’s Hands

In this Instagram post, Kelvin A. Ortiz-Gomez holds an odds-defying holiday card from his alma mater.

Admissions Representative Sarah R. Shott spearheads the holiday card-signing, enlisting college co-workers to share positive and personal messages to U.S. troops.

For the past few years, admissions representative Sarah R. Shott has headed up a campus initiative in which Penn College employees write grateful messages in holiday cards for American servicemen and women. This season, 1,500 cards were signed and sent to A Million Thanks, an organization that distributes them (along with hundreds of thousands of other cards and letters) in packages for troops around the world. One of those greeting cards was astonishingly delivered to Kelvin A. Ortiz-Gomez, who earned his associate degree in collision repair technology a year ago and is now serving in the Army. “Would like to give a shoutout to @PennCollege,” he said via social media, “especially Disability Services for this holiday card I received, which is funny because it’s been a year since I graduated from Penn College and I was given this bag randomly.”

Restoration Freshman in National Race for Help With College Costs

Anthony D. Di Liberto

Anthony D. Di Liberto, a first-year student in Penn College’s automotive restoration technology major, is one of three students nationwide vying for tuition assistance from the RPM Foundation. Online voting among Di Liberto, of New Milford, New Jersey, and his two challengers (Jacob San Martin, of McPherson College, and Jonathon Camper, of the College of Charleston) will end at 3 p.m. Oct. 21. The highest vote-getter will get a share of the money collected at the Autobahn Indoor Speedway in West Nyack, New York, two days later, when fans of the Jalopnik daily automotive blog can pay to race against the website’s staff and contributors. Half of all proceeds from the go-kart races will go to the foundation, which is helping support the next generation of automotive restoration and preservation craftspeople through formal training and mentorship. People like Di Liberto, whose contest profile says, “I take great pride in knowing that, upon my graduation in May of 2018, I will begin to pursue my dream job of working full time in a hot rod or speed and custom shop, building one-of-a-kind works of art.”

Restoration Majors Mentor Tomorrow’s Automotive Artisans

Di Liberto captivates his audience ...

... and Von Zwehl coaches a potential successor during an AACA youth program in Hershey.

Behind the wheel and on top of the world

Members of the Penn College Classic Cruisers club and students in the college’s automotive restoration technology major traveled to Hershey last weekend to proudly represent their school and again help the Hershey chapter of the Antique Automobile Club of America with its youth event. Honoring this year’s racing theme for the program, which was held during the AACA Eastern Regional Fall Meet, the college took along a donated Formula Ford Continental Series racer and a former mini-Indy stock car. The youth program was run by Penn College students Anthony D. Di Liberto, of New Milford, New Jersey;  Luke C. Miller, of Grasonville, Maryland; Andrew B. Moyer, of Hughesville; Preston T. Rose, of Berryville, Virginia; and Dillon K. Von Zwehl, of Mahweh, New Jersey. They expertly guided the youngsters through disassembly of the mini-Indy car so that the restored go-kart can be reassembled next year. Members and alumni prepared video for the club’s Facebook page, demonstrating a virtual paint simulator and other tools of their craft; also participating in Hershey events were Brett A. Reasner, dean of transportation and natural resources technologies, and faculty members Roy H. Klinger and Chad H. Rudloff.
Photos by Rose, an automotive restoration technology major

Restoration Student Bridges Art, Automobiles in Dream Career

A mechanic, pinstriper and sign painter, Anthony D. Di Liberto is merging his twin passions of cars and art as a first-year student in Penn College’s automotive restoration technology major. The young man with old-school dedication to his craft is featured in a YouTube video filmed before he graduated from New Milford High School in New Jersey. “Going to school and learning different aspects of restoration, meeting people and making connections is something I’m really looking forward to,” he says in the video, part of eGarage’s “Stories in Motion” series. “There’s a lot that goes into it. There’s a science, there’s a right and a wrong. I’m a firm believer in ‘You’ve got to know the rules to break the rules.’ You really have to put in the time … evaluate yourself and be honest with yourself … and know that, what you’re doing, you’re proud of.”

Vintage Packard Donated to College’s Auto Restoration Program

Eleanor Packard stands by the 1947 Packard Custom Super Clipper that has been donated to Penn College’s automotive restoration technology major.

A 1947 Packard Custom Super Clipper has been entrusted to Pennsylvania College of Technology’s automotive restoration program by Eleanor Packard, whose late husband – while no relation to the manufacturer – had a longtime connection to the classic American luxury car.

John Neal Packard, of Fallston, Maryland, was a retired engineering executive whose near-lifelong enthusiasm for Packards began at age 10. He organized car shows, borrowed a Packard limousine to chauffeur all three of his daughters on their wedding days, and – after he died in January 2006 – was transported to the cemetery in a Packard hearse, followed by a procession of other Packard owners in their iconic vehicles.

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Diligently Restored, Dazzlingly Arrayed

Automobiles fill the Penn College landscape in this view to the northeast from atop the Breuder Advanced Technology & Health Sciences Center.

Pennsylvania College of Technology provided a stunning backdrop for the Antique Automobile Club of America’s Grand National Meet from Thursday through Saturday, an exciting and extraordinary event that was the largest ever held by the organization. A joint project of the AACA Susquehannock Region and the Penn College Classic Cruisers student group, the gathering attracted more than 600 cars, trucks and motorcycles and thousands of participants and spectators. Activities for registrants and their families included tours of campus and local attractions, informative sessions in instructional labs, and social get-togethers … and two free events were open to the community: Friday’s keynote address by Lyn St. James in the Field House and Saturday’s car show – breathtakingly featuring 40 to 50 million dollars’ worth of automobiles – along the campus mall. A motivational speaker, St. James is a seven-time Indianapolis 500 competitor, the Indy’s first female Rookie of the Year and one of the “Top 100 Female Athletes of the Century” as chosen by Sports Illustrated. In addition to the photo gallery that follows, the memorable event is captured in a video on the college’s YouTube channel:

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The World at Their Feet

International student travelers await their flight from JFK to Zurich.

Thirteen students from the School of Transportation & Natural Resources Technologies this week began a 10-day journey to France and Italy, where they will visit exclusive automotive museums and body shops. The students are traveling with Roy H. Klinger, instructor of collision repair, and are part of two study-abroad courses – International Automotive Studies and the International Automotive Field Experience – offered through the college’s International Programs Office.
Photo by Roy H. Klinger

Living-Learning Community Attends Carlisle Car Show

LLC returns from daylong trip to Carlisle.

Members of Penn College’s Automotive Living-Learning Community attended Saturday’s Carlisle Spring Car Show. “Everyone is glad to be back on campus after a long day in traffic and walking around looking at cars and car parts,” said Eric D. Pruden, automotive instructor and LLC faculty liaison. “The weather was great and everyone enjoyed the event.” From left are Eric M. Santiago, of Vineland, New Jersey; Mark J. Dumais, of Fort Johnson, New York; Brittany A. Frey, of Forksville; Daniel W. DeShong, of Cochranville; Jonathan L. Zechman, of Lebanon; Genevieve M. Kelly, of Beverly, Massachusetts; and James T. Wade, of Lafayette Hill.
Photo by Eric D. Pruden

Historic Number of Penn College Students Headed to Nationals

SkillsUSA Pennsylvania

Seventeen first-place winners from Pennsylvania College of Technology have advanced to the 52nd annual National SkillsUSA Conference, to be held from June 20-24 in Louisville, Kentucky.

Three other students finished in the top four places in their respective categories during the SkillsUSA Pennsylvania Leadership and Skills Conference held earlier this month in Hershey.

“I feel great about the students’ performance at the state competition. It goes to show how well-prepared the students are from their respective fields and how great our instructors are here at the college,” said James N. Colton II, assistant professor of welding and the college’s SkillsUSA adviser. “This is, by far, the most diverse group of students I’ve had go to the competition. The national competition gives us a chance to showcase our technical skills and show everyone why we’re a leader in applied technology. I hope next year we can increase the number going to nationals and continue to make the college proud.”

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Auto-Biography

Automotive restoration technology student Krishna Yadav practices gas welding on steel in College Avenue Labs.

From the Spring 2016 One College Avenue magazine: Car enthusiast and automotive restoration technology student Krishna Yadav worked in human resources in his native India until his brother met automotive instructor Eric D. Pruden at the Antique Automobile Club of America’s Fall Meet in Hershey. “I had no knowledge, but wanted to get it,” Yadav said. “I saw the brochure on the table and knew this was a great opportunity – and at one of the best facilities – to learn all the things I would need to know.” Read more about Yadav in “Auto-Biography.”

Automotive LLC Gets Weekend Workout

At play on a Sunday study break

Living, learning ... and friendly competition.

The Automotive Living-Learning Community students and friends got together Sunday for a friendly (but competitive) session of dodgeball in Penn College’s Field House. The students seemed to be having a good time and they were laughing and joking with each other,” said Eric D. Pruden, automotive instructor and faculty liaison for the LLC. “A lot of energy was expended and those that I saw today told me that they were sore from all the throwing and slept well last night after all that running around.” Participating students were Christianna L. Andryski, David L. Bierly, Carlos A. Cadenas, Allison N. Carr, Daniel W. DeShong, Mark J. Dumais, Josiah S. Fegley, Brittany A. Frey, Genevieve M. Kelly, Raymond W. Pennachio, Hunter P. Richards, Preston T. Rose, Eric M. Santiago, Troy A. Stair, James T. Wade and Jonathan L. Zechman.
Photos by Eric D. Pruden