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Penn College Competes in Student Career Days at Michigan State

Eleven of the Penn College competitors at Student Career Days gather for a group photo with faculty members A dozen students from Pennsylvania College of Technology’s School of Natural Resources Management recently participated in 16 horticulture-related events at the Professional Landscape Network’s Student Career Days competition at Michigan State University.

Two of the students finished near the top of their respective categories during the March 29-to-April 1 event: Anthony S. Moyer, Strausstown, was fourth out of 78 contestants in Safety Management, and Eric M. Sauers, of Williamsport, placed sixth among 47 entries in Exterior Landscape Design. Both enrolled in the college’s landscape/nursery technology major, which since has been revised into ornamental horticulture with separate emphases in landscape technology, plant production and horticulture retail management.

Adam D. Moyer, at the controls of a Dingo trencher.Sauers also competed in the Annual and Perennial Identification category, while Moyer was a team member in the Arboriculture Techniques and Paver Installation events.

“The fact that Eric and Anthony came in the Top 10 in the country is tremendous,” said Carl J. Bower, of the college’s horticulture faculty. “We were up against some stiff competition and the students really rose to the occasion. We are all proud of what the students did.” The college posted an overall finish of 33rd out of 54 schools at Student Career Days, recognized as the largest recruiting event and student competition in the “green” industry. Students also attended educational workshops and had the opportunity to meet potential employers at a career fair.

“I told them it wasn’t really what place they came in, but it was more about trying their best and learning something about what they can do,” Bower said. “If they didn’t do great in a contest, they at least learned something about themselves and how they can improve in the future.”

Other Penn College competitors (arranged by academic major) and their categories are:

Landscape/nursery technology Adam L. Brem, St. Marys, Landscape Maintenance Operation, Truck and Trailer Operation, and Wood Construction; Ryan D. Daugherty, Erie, Pest Management and Business Management; Brent M. Davies, Oley, Paver Installation and Wood Construction; Jess C. Kipferl, Millerton, Safety Management and Landscape Maintenance Operation; Patrick J. Michaels, Curwensville, Pest Management and Woody Ornamental Plant Identification; Adam D. Moyer, Bernville, Compact Utility Loader Operation and Skid Steer Operation; and Kyle D. Postupack, Williamsport, Truck and Trailer Operation and Woody Ornamental Plant Identification.

Floral design/interior plantscape Kristin L. Shust, Greenfield Township, Interior Plant Identification and Interior Landscape Design.

Jess C. Kipferl handles a weed-trimmer during the Landscape Maintenance Operations category.Forest technology Chad S. Mader, Sugar Grove, Arboriculture Techniques.

Technology management Jill M. Purificato, Philadelphia, Interior Plant Identification and Leadership Skills.

“They had a great time competing, and they got to meet a lot of their peers from across the country from 54 schools,” Bower added. “They also got to meet about 100 different employers at the career fair. That is something you don’t get to do very often.”

For more about the Student Career Days competition, to be held in Atlanta next year, visit online . More about the School of Natural Resources Management, based at the Schneebeli Earth Science Center near Allenwood, is available by calling (570) 320-8038, sending e-mail or visiting on the Web.

( Photos provided by Carl J. Bower, temporary full-time faculty, horticulture)

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