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Penn College Extrusion Workshop Proves Popular

Nationwide plastics industry professionals converged at Pennsylvania College of Technology’s renowned Plastics Innovation & Resource Center for the 19th Annual Extrusion Seminar & Hands-On Workshop.

Forty-three participants, representing 20 companies and nine states, attended the three-day event led by extrusion experts Chris Rauwendaal and Kirk M. Cantor. Rauwendaal is president of Rauwendaal Extrusion Engineering Inc. in Auburn, California; Cantor is a professor of plastics and polymer technology at Penn College. Combined, the duo has approximately 70 years of experience in plastics.

Adam C. Barilla, instructor of plastics and polymer technology at Penn College, demonstrates tensile testing to participants during the 19th annual Extrusion Seminar & Hands-On Workshop at the college’s Plastics Innovation & Resource Center.  (Photo by Tia G. La, student photographer)
Adam C. Barilla, instructor of plastics and polymer technology at Penn College, demonstrates tensile testing to participants during the 19th annual Extrusion Seminar & Hands-On Workshop at the college’s Plastics Innovation & Resource Center. (Photo by Tia G. La, student photographer)

The instructors combined hands-on activities in the college’s plastics labs with classroom work. Course topics ranged from extruder hardware to screw design, and the labs featured extruders, molders and test equipment.

Rauwendaal and Cantor were joined by Penn College faculty Timothy E. Weston, associate professor of plastics and polymer technology, and Adam C. Barilla, instructor of plastics and polymer technology; PIRC staff Christopher J. Gagliano, program manager of the Thermoforming Center of Excellence, Gary E. McQuay, engineering manager, and Brennan B. Wodrig, laboratory supervisor and project coordinator; and PIRC student research assistants Casey A. Curtin, of Berwick, and Jeremy M. Dorward, of Muncy. Curtin and Dorward are plastics and polymer engineering technology majors.

Attendees’ testimonials reflected a positive experience with the workshop team and the material.

“The entire staff was great. The mix of hands-on work combined with lecture was effective. This was my first in-depth look into extrusion, and I feel it will help me in my future work,” said Robert M. Oelschlager, technologist at Nova Chemicals in Monaca.

“Real solutions for real extrusion problems. Extremely informative course,” said James Kelleher, plant/process engineer at Georg Fischer Harvel in Easton.

“Excellent content. In my case, after 30 years in extrusion, long overdue,” said David Yunginger, senior process technician at Berk-Tek in New Holland.

The PIRC is a globally recognized leader in plastics education and training. It supports industry growth by providing companies with customized training and access to resources available through Penn College’s academic programs and facilities. To learn more, call 570-321-5533.

Penn College is among a handful of institutions nationwide offering plastics degrees that are accredited by the Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission of ABET. For more about the plastics majors and other programs offered by the college’s School of Industrial, Computing & Engineering Technologies, call 570-327-4520.

For more about Penn 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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