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‘My Last Words’ Offers Renewed Opportunity for Faculty Valediction

Daniel L. BrooksWhat would you tell your friends and family if you could leave them with one last thought? Would you impart a lesson from experience? Maybe tell some jokes or list the top five items you think everyone should own?

Student-selected faculty members at Pennsylvania College of Technology were asked the same questions and, for the second year, will offer their responses in two “My Last Words” events organized by the Student Activities Office. Both presentations are open to the public and will be held at 6:30 each night in Penn’s Inn, on the second floor of the Bush Campus Center.

This series will begin Oct. 17 with Daniel L. Brooks, part-time instructor of architectural technology, whose presentation, “Surely You Aren’t Going to Eat All That!” will discuss the importance of resisting the temptation to pile too many things on life’s plate − and how a purpose, a plan and a set of priorities make a world of difference.

“I chose the title because I thought it might prove to be an attention-getter. Although it appears to lend itself quite possibly to eating habits, I am not going to address establishing a healthy diet,” Brooks said. “Rather, I am going to talk to students about the potential dangers of taking on a ‘full plate.’ Now, that is a subject I am familiar with!”

Brooks believes any of us can become susceptible to taking on too many activities without looking ahead and counting the cost − the cost of our time.

“I believe my personal life experiences, as well as my observation of others, can prove quite helpful to our student body, as well as any of my colleagues who might care to attend,” he said.

Bruce A. WehlerIn the second and final message on Nov. 14 − drawn from Henry David Thoreau’s affirmation, “Surely, Joy Is the Condition of Life” − part-time English/speech communication instructor Bruce A. Wehler will challenge listeners to discover, experience and cherish the joyous times in their lives.

“To me, joy is more than being happy about how a particular event or series of events have turned out. Joy is a way of life that affirms the value of life and the importance of human relationships,” he said. Wehler will draw upon various works of literature and the thoughts of diverse individuals on the importance of human relationships, and speak from his experiences as a husband and father.

“My youngest four children are adopted, and that has taught me a wealth about embracing joy in good times and in bad,” he said.

“I might also draw upon some very painful experiences in my life, such as my younger brother’s sudden and unexpected death, and how joy not only can be found, but must be found, in the most painful times of life as well,” Wehler said. “As human beings, we have the greatest freedom within us − the freedom to choose our attitude in any given situation. Why not choose joy?

“My presentation will focus on the celebratory aspects of life as a way of cherishing the people in our lives, those who help transform our modest human experience into something truly extraordinary … if we will look for it, risk it and embrace it!”

For more information about the Student Activities Office at Penn College, call (570) 327-4763 or visit online.

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