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Two retired longtime faculty earn ‘emeritus’ designation

Two retired faculty members at Pennsylvania College of Technology – each with decades of service to the institution – have been granted “emeritus” status.

The Penn College Board of Directors on Thursday authorized the faculty emeritus designation for Eric K. Albert, associate professor of automated manufacturing and engineering, who began his employment with the college in 1991, and Chef Craig A. Cian, associate professor of food and hospitality management/culinary arts, who started with the college in 1985. Both men retired in 2020.

“Eric and Craig’s expertise and selfless commitment have created countless long-term opportunities for our students,” said Michael J. Reed, vice president for academic affairs/provost. “Their mission focus and efficacy, coupled with genuine care and concern, brought out the best in our students and colleagues; we will always be grateful for their efforts and accomplishments. Congratulations, Dr. Albert and Chef Cian.”

Eric K. AlbertEric K. Albert
Albert’s nominating documentation notes he served the college both as an administrator and faculty member, performing such roles as school dean and department head along the way. Albert wrote and managed several foundation, state and federal grants that enabled the college to remain on the cutting edge of advanced manufacturing technology.

Recognizing the financial impact of maintaining state-of-the-art technology, Albert learned how to conduct preventive maintenance and repairs on the majority of the college’s 3D printers, and he routinely used his own funds to buy new printers so students could experience a wide breadth of 3D printing technology.

In retirement, Albert has continued to serve as a co-principal investigator for a National Science Foundation grant supporting the automated manufacturing department. This role included identifying new technologies for the college to purchase, conducting training for faculty on the new technology, and supporting other program activities such as a teacher externship camp in Summer 2020.

“As a faculty member of the manufacturing department, he has demonstrated expert subject knowledge of metallurgy,” a nominator wrote. “He has developed curriculum for totally new technologies and also became the expert of 3D printing, additive manufacturing, CNC lasers and related emerging technologies.”

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Albert responded by 3D-printing face shields and ventilator splitters, using his own equipment and materials.

“His willingness to always help out, regardless of the situation, demonstrates his character,” the nominator wrote.

Chef Craig A. CianCraig A. Cian
Cian’s service includes two stints as a department head (1993-98 and 2003-10), and he earned an Excellence in Teaching Award from the college in 1998.

He served as chairperson on three reaccreditation reports with the American Culinary Federation Educational Institute and the Accreditation Commission for Programs in Hospitality Administration. Additionally, Cian served as a peer evaluator and/or team chair on 15 site visits with the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools and the ACFEI.

Cian officially retired in May, but was dedicated to finishing a class that could not be completed in Spring 2020 due to COVID-19 pandemic restrictions. He returned voluntarily in August and donated his experience and time to ensure students had the opportunity to finish their lab requirements for the course.

A nominator wrote: “Craig is the embodiment of team player and really is an unsung hero of the hospitality department. Craig was able to teach all areas and levels of baking, culinary and hospitality management. Craig served as a great mentor for his students and peers. His empathy, compassion, professionalism and passion were evident to all of those around him.”

“Chef Cian recognized the responsibility he possessed toward preparing the next generation of future leaders in our industry,” another nominator wrote. “While he was firm as an instructor, his firmness was always accompanied by positive motivation and encouragement toward our students.”

For more about Penn College, a national leader in applied technology education, email the Admissions Office or call toll-free 800-367-9222.

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