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National Construction Advisory Board Includes Penn College Faculty

Two faculty members in Pennsylvania College of Technology’s building construction technology department recently participated in the National Association of Home Builders Student Chapters Advisory Board meeting in Dallas, Texas.

In addition to serving on the national board, instructors Barney A. Kahn IV and Levon A. Whitmyer serve on subcommittees: Kahn is a member of the two-year competition and awards subcommittees, and Whitmyer sits on the four-year competition and nominating subcommittees.

“Being two of 15 educational members gives the college a significant national platform to lead our students into an industry that is in need of new young members,” Whitmyer said. “Barney and I never realized how important this volunteer position would be at placing us in the discussions at this level. We now realize that Penn College’s School of Construction & Design Technologies has the opportunity to become a national influence in the delivery of residential construction education.”

Building construction technology instructors Levon A. Whitmyer (left) and Barney A. Kahn IV represent Penn College on the National Association of Home Builders Student Chapters Advisory Board. (Photo by Carol A. Lugg, assistant dean of construction and design technologies)
Building construction technology instructors Levon A. Whitmyer (left) and Barney A. Kahn IV represent Penn College on the National Association of Home Builders Student Chapters Advisory Board. (Photo by Carol A. Lugg, assistant dean of construction and design technologies)

The focus of the one-day meeting was to review the rules and guidelines for the 2016 Residential Construction Management Competition. The annual competition takes place at the International Builders Show, with more than 1,000 students representing two- and four-year collegiate teams. Participating NAHB student chapters all have the opportunity to apply their skills and present their management projects to construction company executives.

Teams from the two-year program at Penn College are four-time national champions. Students in the four-year program continue to improve their ranking, facing such competitors as Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo, the University of Florida and Illinois State University, among other research-related institutions.

“Our afternoon session focused on recruiting more high school students into the industry,” Kahn said. “We brought up our Penn College NOW dual-enrollment program, and explained how we reach out and engage our high school partners with aligning programs. We were excited to share our knowledge on building these opportunities for secondary students, with other attendees interested in hearing more about our innovative recruitment tool at the high school level.”

The instructors also discussed how they went about securing endorsement from the Pennsylvania Builders Association, the first postsecondary program in the state to do so. Following the framework established for Penn College, PBA has reached out to comprehensive high schools and career and technical centers throughout the commonwealth to establish appropriate secondary goals for endorsement.

Kahn and Whitmyer also serve as advisers to the Penn College Construction Association, a student chapter of the NAHB. At the close of the Spring 2015 semester, the club was honored as Penn College’s Outstanding Student Organization of the Year.

For more about majors within Penn College’s School of Construction & Design Technologies, call 570-327-4518.

For more information about the college, a national leader in applied technology education and workforce development, email the Admissions Office or call toll-free 800-367-9222.

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