'Penn College & You' Public-Affairs Series Begins Eighth Season

Published 08.15.2002


Long known for producing "degrees that work," Pennsylvania College of Technology marks a milestone this September with a different type of production that works: the television show "Penn College & You."

On Sept. 3, the public-affairs series begins its eighth season of extending faculty and staff expertise at The Pennsylvania State University affiliate to viewers across the country.

Thanks to 24 cable outlets in eight states, the Universityhouse Channel on the DISH Network's direct broadcast satellite system and broadcast station WFMZ in the Greater Lehigh Valley, "Penn College & You" will be shared with more than 10 million television households during its new season.

"We are proud to offer another season of 'Penn College & You' to so many viewers," said Dr. Davie Jane Gilmour, College president. "It's gratifying to share the College's educational resources and hands-on expertise through the series. Regionally, 'Penn College & You' is a valuable public-service initiative. Nationally, it's a vehicle to communicate with an audience who otherwise might not connect with Penn College."

Episode topics for the new season include car buying and maintenance; children and play; home energy efficiency; career decision-making; computers as a learning tool; material transformation; technology in the office; home entertaining; and travel tips/vacation planning.

"Very few television series last more than one season, let alone thrive entering an eighth year," said Tom Speicher, broadcast media specialist at Penn College and "Penn College & You's" host/executive producer. "The difference between us and other series is that, with the tremendous resources at Penn College, we never have to worry about running out of show ideas."

The season premiere of "Penn College & You" in the Williamsport region will focus on healthy living and include the expertise of Paul A. "Babe" Mayer Jr., associate professor of personal fitness, and Diane S. Davis, an assistant professor of dietary management. The episode will air every Tuesday in September at 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Susquehanna Communications Channel 2.

"We're fortunate to have so many talented individuals at Penn College eager to share their knowledge and professional expertise," Speicher said. "The faculty and staff at the College realize the tremendous outreach potential provided by the series."

Similar to last year, "Penn College & You" will be shot entirely on-location at Penn College campus sites and in the surrounding Williamsport area.

"Moving the show out of the studio and transforming it into a 30-minute series shot in a location related to the day's subject revitalized 'Penn College & You' last year," Speicher said. "We received a lot of positive feedback regarding the changes. This season, the show will look even better."

During its run, "Penn College & You" has been honored nationally for its content and presentation with a Telly Award; Gold, Silver and Merit Awards from Admissions Marketing Report; Silver and Bronze Paragon Awards for Best College Video Program; and an APEX Award of Excellence.

"Many talented individuals are involved with the series," Speicher noted. "Our co-producer, Susquehanna Communications, and their production manager, Mike Strunk, have been vital players in the success of 'Penn College & You.' As well, Christopher J. Leigh, digital media production specialist at the College, has done a wonderful job creating digital elements for the show."

In addition to its weekly Tuesday 7 and 7:30 p.m. airings on SCN Channel 2 in Williamsport and its nationwide broadcast to all DISH Network subscribers on Universityhouse Channel 9411 the last Saturday and Sunday of the month at 11 a.m. MST, "Penn College & You's" new season will air on the following Pennsylvania cable systems: Altoona, Danville/Lewisburg/Milton/Watsontown, Erie, Harrisburg, Hazleton, Lehighton, Mansfield/Wellsboro, Reading, Wilkes-Barre and York. WFMZ in Allentown will broadcast the new season's 10 episodes beginning next May.

In New York, the eighth season of "Penn College & You" will be seen in Long Island, Chappaqua, Lockport/Niagara Falls, Rochester and Westfield. The New Jersey affiliate is located in Toms River. Maryland outlets include College Park and Salisbury. Other affiliates are located in Cincinnati, East Haven, Conn., Rockford, Mich., St. Peter, Minn., and Stillwater, Minn.