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Penn College Students Dominate Annual Heavy Equipment ‘Rodeo’

A participant in the skid-steer basketball contest, one of seven events in the Oct. 24 Precision Heavy Construction Equipment Rodeo at Pennsylvania College of Technology%E2%80%99s Schneebeli Earth Science Center, heads for the hoop.A team of Pennsylvania College of Technology students won the 28th annual Precision Heavy Construction Equipment Rodeo, held at the Schneebeli Earth Science Center as part of the college’s Open House.

The rodeo is sponsored by the Service and Operation of Heavy Equipment Association (S&O), a student organization at Penn College.

The Oct. 24 competition was held on the recreation field at the Earth Science campus near Allenwood, home to the college’s School of Natural Resources Management. The rodeo was moved from the Earth Science Center parking lot last year, allowing Penn College to expand the event onto a crowd-pleasing larger venue.

Eighty competitors from five schools participated in this year’s rodeo: Penn College, Cayuga Onondaga BOCES (N.Y.), Central Pennsylvania Institute of Science and Technology, Alfred State College and Wildwood BOCES (N.Y.).

Behind Penn College’s first-place finish were Cayuga Onondaga, second; and CPI, third.

Penn College students dominated nearly all of this year’s seven events: the backhoe egg drop, the excavator soccer-ball pick, the skid-steer basketball contest, the wheel-loader softball challenge, the skid-steer pipe pick, the backhoe garbage-can pick and the block stack using an excavator with a hydraulic “thumb.”

A John Deere simulator, courtesy of American Infrastructure, was on display for students and Open House guests to try out.

Two heavy construction equipment technology: operator emphasis students received scholarships as a result of their success in competition: Jonathan Gialouris, of Stroudsburg, was awarded $1,250 and H. Ross Trego, of Downingtown, won a $750 prize.

There were two $100 cash prizes: one from Glenn O. Hawbaker Inc., which was won by Gialouris, and one from Bob Johnson Flagstone Inc., won by Shea O. Reiley, a technology management major from Williamsport (who also earned an associate degree in heavy construction equipment technology: operator emphasis in 2008).

Machines for the event were donated by Groff Tractor and Equipment Inc., Cleveland Brothers Equipment Co., Five Star Equipment, C.H. Waltz and Sons Inc., Best Line Equipment and Lycoming County Natural Resources Management. Judges were provided by Glenn O. Hawbaker, American Infrastructure, Lycoming County Natural Resources Management, Wayne Township Landfill, and Gas Field Specialties.

The event, a regular part of Penn College’s fall Open House, was followed by an awards ceremony and a cookout.

For more about the School of Natural Resources Management, visit online or call 570-320-8038.

For general information about the college, visit on the Web , e-mail or call toll-free 800-367-9222.

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