Pennsylvania Highlands Community College would like to congratulate Liberal Arts & Sciences Student Christopher Geisler, of Johnstown, on his paper having been accepted for presentation and publication.  The Beacon Conference accepted Christopher’s paper, “The Changing Demographic and Treatment of Heroin Addiction,” last May and he was able to present it in June of 2017.

The Beacon Conference was established by mostly Honors faculty to recognize, celebrate, and showcase the academic achievements of outstanding students at community colleges in the mid-Atlantic region. It encompasses a wide range of disciplines, and was held at Orange County Community College in Middletown, New York, this past year.

His paper, prepared under the guidance of Penn Highlands’ professors Dr. Russell Newman and Daniella Errett, was judged the best of those presented in his panel, for which he received a monetary prize and selection for future publication in the proceedings of the Beacon Conference.  This year there were 162 total submissions for 21 panels.

Christopher wrote about a very timely and pertinent topic: heroin abuse.  His paper explored the sharp increase in heroin abuse across a variety of demographics. The link between the shift in demographics of the typical addict and the shift in public policy were also examined.

His paper was more than just a scholarly paper. Chris states, “This was written not only as a social commentary on a controversial, divisive, and relevant issue, but also as a personal indictment of a system that has failed myself, my friends, and my loved ones. I have more friends who have died from an

overdose, disease, or the lifestyle associated with heroin addiction than I care to count, so this is not an arbitrary issue to me. My hope is that this paper will provide inspiration in others to seek a more effective and empathetic approach in solving a problem that has become such a cumbersome burden on communities and families across the nation.”

After graduation, Christopher plans to double major in Mathematics and English, and then pursue a master’s degree in Education, hoping to fulfill a career in teaching. Christopher’s ultimate goal is to earn a doctorate and teach at the university level.

“I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity I had to participate in the Beacon Conference. It was a surreal experience and unlike anything I had ever been a part of. Not only did it strengthen my collegiate and career prospects, but it strengthened my resolve to continue along the path I chose for myself years ago,” stated Christopher Geisler.

Liberal Arts & Sciences Student Christopher Geisler standing in the courtyard. (Pennsylvania Highlands Community College Richland Campus)

About The Beacon Conference
The Beacon Conference was born in 1993 when Rockland Community College (NY), with a grant from the American Association of Community Colleges and the Kellogg Foundation, and in association with Bergen Community College (NJ), Brookdale Community College (NJ), Catonsville Community College (MD), Dutchess Community College (NY), Harford Community College (MD), Kingsborough Community College (NY), Middlesex Community/Technical College (CT), Nassau Community College (NY) and Westchester Community College (NY), organized two conferences for student scholars at two-year colleges in the mid-Atlantic region. Since then, the conference has been sponsored by a coalition of participating community colleges, which take turns hosting this event each year on the first Friday of June.

Pennsylvania Highlands Community College sophomore Timothy Borish is making waves in the online video industry. Through Media Production, he is learning the trade and, as a result, Timothy’s first attempt at creating a virtual reality animation film went viral. His first 360-degree video animation focused on Cipher from Disney’s Gravity Falls television show. Cipher is a yellow triangle with arms, legs, one eye, and a top hat.

After posting his video to YouTube, Timothy was contacted by a company called United Talent, and has since partnered with them to receive monthly advertisement revenue based on the number of views his content receives. As of this release, his “Bill Cipher 360” experience has received over 2 million views.

Tim’s video can viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0OynnW9Of0 and is best-viewed using virtual reality goggles after having been downloaded to a phone.

He is currently working on a sequel, but while that is being developed, he took some time to visit the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles over the summer. Joining over 68,000 people, he took some of the College’s equipment to document the experience for his YouTube channel. He spent time talking to the lead developer of the Atari Flashback, experienced new virtual reality domes, and countless other displays.

“Timothy Borish is a talented and creative student. He is a go-getter, always pushing himself to do more and to learn more in both traditional video and in virtual reality. Timothy is a pleasure to work with,” stated Rick Bukoski, Assistant Professor of Communication and Media Studies at Penn Highlands Community College.

The College’s Media Production program features a blend of three major communication fields: television production, radio production, and e-based technologies. Graduates are prepared for any number of jobs in radio, television, and emerging media (i.e. social media).

Screenshot of Timothy Borish’s virtual reality video featuring Cipher.

Homecoming 2017 at Pennsylvania Highlands Community College will take place the week of September 18. Throughout the week, there will be various student activities and community service projects for students and alumni.

Student clubs and organizations will host “Spirit Week” Monday through Friday at each of the College’s five locations in Blair, Cambria, Huntingdon, and Somerset counties.

Homecoming 2017 will culminate with Family Day on Saturday, September 23, from 8 AM to 2 PM. Family Day will include:

  • 8 AM: 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament (Registration Required)
  • 9 AM: Black Bear 5K and Kids Fun Run (Details Below – Registration Required)
  • 10 AM – 2 PM: Interactive Inflatables, Kids Crafts, Games, Caricatures, Photo Booth
  • 1 PM: Women’s Volleyball Game vs. Howard Community College

The College Foundation’s annual Black Bear 5K and Kids Fun Run is on Saturday, September 23, and is sponsored by Wessel & Company.  Registration begins at 8 AM and the race will begin at 9 AM.  Pre-registration for the event is $15.00 and race-day registration is $20.00.  Proceeds from the race will benefit Athletics at Penn Highlands Community College.

For more information about Homecoming 2017, please contact the President’s Office at 814.262.3820 or foundation@pennhighlands.edu.

The Pennsylvania Highlands Community College Media Production program was represented at Indiana University of Pennsylvania’s most recent Technology Day (held in August). Jessica Krouse, program graduate, and Timothy Borish, current program student, held seminars discussing ways in which instructors can better engage their students.

Jessica Krouse presented on Using Powtoons. Powtoons is a free animated slide show program allowing users to create animated characters and objects to tell a specific story. Timothy Borish presented on Using Plotagon. Plotagon gives users the ability to create animated videos and characters by choosing a scene, creating and adding their own actors, adding sound, and more.

The College’s Media Production program features a blend of three major communication fields: television production, radio production, and e-based technologies. Graduates will be prepared for any number of jobs in radio, television, and emerging media (i.e. social media).

Pennsylvania Highlands has five locations across the region: Blair, Ebensburg, Huntingdon, Richland, and Somerset.

 

Graduate Jessica Krouse sits with an iPad featuring Powtoons.

 

On Monday, September 11th, the Pennsylvania Highlands Community College Career Services Center will be hosting guest presenter Rick Bausher, Store Manager of Boscov’s, for their annual Dress for Success event. Mr. Bausher will be providing tips on proper attire for interviews and job fairs to students in the Workforce Education Center’s LGI room.  The LGI is located on the Richland Campus at 101 Community College Way in Johnstown.

After the presentation, Penn Highlands’ students are invited to the Career Services Center for refreshments and to browse through a collection of complimentary interview attire available in the College’s “Career Closet.” Students will be able to select one free outfit to keep and utilize as they advance in their careers.

The College’s Career Services Center is devoted to helping current students and alumni find success beyond the classroom in our region. For additional information, contact the Career Services Center at 814.262.3850 or careerservices@pennhighlands.edu.

Pennsylvania Highlands Community College and California University of Pennsylvania have collaborated to help better serve the region. The two institutions recently signed an articulation agreement allowing students to easily transfer credits earned through the Associate of Applied Science in Small Business Management (Penn Highlands) to the Bachelor of Science in Technology Management (California University of Pennsylvania) program.

This agreement allows Penn Highlands’ graduates the ability to apply for full junior standing upon admission into California University of Pennsylvania. A secondary purpose is to provide faculty and administration of both institutions with more precise guidelines for advising students interested in pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Technology Management.  These guidelines will help students achieve their degree in the most cost effective and timely manner possible.

With the addition of this new agreement, there now stands seven (7) articulation agreements in place between Penn Highlands Community College and California University of Pennsylvania. These program-to-program agreements include:

  • Small Business Management (A.A.S) to Bachelor of Science in Technology Management
  • Human Services (A.A.S) to Bachelor of Social Work
  • Business Administration (A.S.) to Bachelor of Science in Business Administration
  • Criminal Justice (A.S.) to Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice
  • Computer Science (A.S.) to Bachelor of Science Computer Science
  • Early Childhood Education (A.A.) to Bachelor of Science in Education: PreK-4
  • Psychology (A.A.) to Bachelor of Arts in Psychology

These agreements follow the 2+2 model where students must earn an associate’s degree first before they are able to obtain transfer of credit with junior standing.

“Our commitment to this region gets stronger with every partnership,” said Dr. Walter Asonevich, College President.  “These agreements provide our students with a level of comfort and confidence in knowing their credits are able to transfer after graduation from Penn Highlands.”

Pennsylvania Highlands Community College is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education. The College has five locations throughout the region: Blair, Ebensburg, Huntingdon, Richland, and Somerset.

The 15th Annual Cambria County College Fair, sponsored by Pennsylvania Highlands Community College, will be held on Tuesday, September 12th, at the Frank J. Pasquerilla Conference Center. This year’s College Fair will take place from 8am to 11am, with students coming in from across the region.

The mission of the College Fair is to promote higher education and future opportunities to not only high school students and their families, but to the public as well. The Cambria County College Fair helps local community members find and discover the many educational and career opportunities that are right in their back yard.

Numerous high schools are taking part, including Blacklick Valley, Conemaugh Township, Conemaugh Valley, Ferndale, Forest Hills, Johnstown, Portage, Richland, Westmont, Windber, and more.

Colleges and universities from all over the state of Pennsylvania will be on-hand to meet with and assist guests regarding their educational and career needs. With so many institutions attending, there is something for everyone: technical schools, business colleges, cosmetology schools and universities, branches of the military, banks, local businesses, and more.

The Cambria County College Fair is here to better our community, please take part or stop by. The College Fair is happening on September 12. Be a part of something special and help us promote this community event to make it a great success.

For more details on the College Fair, contact Pennsylvania Highlands Community College at 1.888.385.PEAK or by emailing Daun Boyle, Assistant to the Vice President of Student Services, at dboyle@pennhighlands.edu. Penn Highlands Community College is always available online at www.pennhighlands.edu.

 

 

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