Board Approves Purchase of Former BiLo Property

Published 12.10.2004


The Pennsylvania College of Technology Board of Directors on Thursday approved the purchase of property at 1127 W. Fourth St. (formerly BiLo market), for $1.45 million.

College President Dr. Davie Jane Gilmour said the property will undergo renovation in order to serve as the location for classes and services provided by Workforce Development and Continuing Education and the Plastics Manufacturing Center.

"Operations from this location will have a direct impact on business and industry, as well as the economic vitality of the local community, the region and the commonwealth," Dr. Gilmour said.

Workforce Development& Continuing Education offers courses, consulting, product development, prototyping, grant funding, needs assessment and facility-rental services to serve business-and-industry needs. In addition, it serves as a worldwide training resource for Lycoming - A Textron Company, and is the base of operation for the state's Manufactured Housing Resource Center and the Plastics Manufacturing Center, which serve the needs of these specific industries.

The purchase and renovation of the former BiLo property will be funded through an $8.6 million Series 2005 Bond issue, also approved by the Board on Thursday. The bond issue also will provide for the retrofitting of various campus facilities impacted by the construction of the Student and Administrative Services Center and the Roger and Peggy Madigan Library, and by renovation of the Klump Academic Center. These projects are part of the 2004-09 Site and Facilities Master Plan previously approved by the Board.

Also on Thursday, the Board heard from Robert M. Fisher III, vice president for business affairs, regarding the unqualified, clean audit opinion the College received for the fiscal year ending June 30. Once again, the auditors found no condition worthy of mention in a management letter. Consolidated assets (the College, the Penn College Foundation and the Community Arts Center) total $207 million; liabilities total $119 million. The College alone accounts for $200 million of the total assets (and all of the liabilities).

The Board also heard the Fall 2004 enrollment report. Total enrollment is 6,358 students (5,891 full-time equivalent). Students in bachelor-degree programs now account for 36 percent of all enrollments. Some 1,500 students are residing on campus, representing 23 percent of the total enrollment. Spring 2005 enrollment is projected to grow by at least 2 percent over Spring 2004.