Parent Newsletter
Spring 2016, Issue 1View past issues

Save the Date! Accepted Students Reception

We're bringing Penn College to you! Join representatives from Admissions, Financial Aid, Academic Affairs, Residence Life, and Student Life as we travel to your area to meet you! This reception is an informal event at which accepted students and parents have the opportunity to meet other students who will be attending Penn College from their hometown. This is a great opportunity for you to speak one-on-one with department representatives and have all of your last-minute questions answered before heading to campus in August.

Accepted students will receive an email and postcard invitation that will direct them to a link to register online for each reception.

Accepted Student Receptions
  • Thursday, April 7, State College, PA
  • Wednesday, April 13, Lancaster, PA
  • Wednesday, April 20, Williamsport, PA
  • Wednesday, April 27, Fort Washington, PA
  • Thursday, April 28, Reading, PA
  • Tuesday, May 3, Breinigsville, PA
  • Thursday, May 5, Scranton, PA
  • Thursday, May 12, Mt. Arlington, NJ

Don't miss these upcoming informational events as well:

Open House
  • Saturday, April 2
Senior Visit Days – Class of 2017
  • Friday, June 17
  • Saturday, July 16
  • Friday, July 29

Practice, Practice, Practice!

Is placement testing on the horizon for your student? If so, encourage him/her to prepare. Students are likely to feel more confident and perform better if they practice prior to testing. The goal of placement testing is to get an accurate read of each student's current skills. This allows us to place new students into first-semester courses comparable with their skill levels, setting the stage for first-semester success.

What to practice

We evaluate students' skills in the foundational subject areas of math, reading, and English. (See Testing Overview & Contents.) However, not all students will be required to take all parts of the placement test. Some students are exempted from parts of the test based upon SAT or ACT scores or transferred courses. (See Placement Requirements to learn more about exemption criteria.) Students can find a list of the placement tests they are required to take by logging into the Student Information System and visiting the placement test page under View Application Status.

How to practice

Students can access practice and sample materials on the Preparing for Test Day page under step 1.

Help your student get off to a strong start! Encourage him/her to practice for the placement test.

Learn more about placement testing, and view parent information, on the Academic Services website.

2016-17 On-Campus Housing Application Process for Current Students

The 2016-17 on-campus housing application process for current students began on February 3. Current students can apply to live on campus during the 2016-17 Academic Year by going to the Student Information System and completing a housing contract and paying a housing deposit ($200 for students currently living on campus and $300 for students currently living off campus). Space on campus for returning students is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. If your son or daughter has not yet applied for on-campus housing, he or she should do so as soon as possible to have the best chance of securing a space on campus next year. On-campus living is safe, convenient, and cost effective. If you have questions about on-campus housing or the application process, contact Residence Life at 570-320-8023 or email us.

So Your Student's Thinking About Living Off-Campus

Off-Campus Living and Commuter Services serves as a resource for students who are living off-campus. Along with educating our off-campus students and providing programming to meet their needs, we also offer a list of approved landlords and properties.

Our list of landlords and properties, along with additional information about our services, can be found on our off-campus website. We work with over 35 landlords who meet three specific requirements to be able to be on our approved list.

  • They are located in our police patrol zone.
  • They are inspected on a yearly basis by the Williamsport Bureau of Codes.
  • They are renting exclusively to college students.

There are several points to consider prior to making the decision to live off-campus. Keep in mind that landlords are independent owners of their properties/business, so even though the College maintains a great working relationship with them, they create their own leases and policies. There also is a lot of variety in our off-campus housing list, so take the much-needed time to shop around, talk to landlords face-to-face, and tour properties. Consider the fact that prices, apartment styles, and utility costs will vary from landlord to landlord. Finally, we suggest that students understand their lease and make sure that all of their questions are answered before making any final decisions.

Most landlords will ask students to sign a lease for the full academic year, from August to May, including both the fall and spring semesters. Most require students to pay per semester; however, there are some students who pay monthly. Many students will use their financial aid to cover the cost of housing, and most prices are very comparable to on-campus housing costs.

We hope that you will consider the above if your son or daughter is considering living off-campus. Please do not hesitate to contact our office directly for additional information at 570-320-8004 or email us!

An Abundance of Resources

A key component of being successful in college is knowing when help is needed and where to find it. The Academic Success Center at Penn College offers our students an abundance of resources to help them achieve their educational goals. These resources are free for all Penn College students and include the following:

  • Tutoring Services in a variety of formats that include drop-in, by-appointment, small group, supplemental instruction, and online options.
  • A Writing Center that uses a process-centered approach to help students with writing assignments.
  • Study Skills to help students learn how to study more efficiently.
  • Academic Mentoring and Social Mentoring to help students transition to and through the college experience.

For detailed information, visit our portal site or feel free to contact The Academic Success Center.

Talking with Your Son or Daughter About Suicide

The college years are filled with opportunities and challenges, and you have probably watched (and listened) as your son or daughter experienced the ups and downs of these moments. Many students become stressed and overwhelmed, and this sometimes leads to depression, and in some cases, suicidal thoughts. In fact, in one study, one in ten college students said that they had considered suicide in the past year. The Penn College community, like other college campuses, has experienced the tragedy of suicide. As always, we are committed to the well being of our students and are continually educating students, faculty, and staff about warning signs and symptoms of suicide, as well as the availability of support services on campus. We recognize that, as family members, it is important for you to be a part of this prevention network as well and offer suggestions about what you can do.

  • Talk with your son or daughter about suicide just as you would about other risky behaviors such as drinking and driving. Talking about suicide does not plant the idea in someone's head; rather it gives them permission to talk about something that may have been difficult to bring up otherwise. If your child does not feel comfortable talking with you, suggest that s/he talk with another trusted adult such as a family member, a pastor, minister, rabbi or priest, a coach, or a family doctor.
  • Know the warning signs and symptoms, which include:
    • Feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, and anger
    • Comments such as “Everyone would be better off without me” or “I'm so tired and can't take it anymore”
    • Engaging in risky behaviors, substance abuse
    • Sleep, energy, or appetite changes
    • Changes in personality, loss of interest, withdrawal from friends and family
    • Situational triggers such as recent break-ups, loss or death, legal or academic trouble, divorce or separation in family
  • Do not ignore these warning signs.
  • Encourage your son or daughter to go to the Counseling Services office if you are concerned.
  • If you believe that the situation is serious and your son or daughter is unwilling to seek help, call someone you feel can talk with him or her – an advisor, Residence Life staff member, or the Counseling Services office at 570-327-4765. After business hours, you can call the Penn College Police at 570-321-5555.

The most important thing to do is keep the lines of communication open. You may be in the best position to notice when something is wrong. And, again, know that members of the Penn College community are listening, too.

PCT Alerts

Penn College is committed to the safety and security of our student body. We show this commitment in a number of ways, including staffing a highly qualified police force, conducting tabletop readiness drills, and maintaining an emergency alert system. While the College takes precautions and prepares for many different types of emergencies, we also need students to play a role in their own safety and security. The simplest way to do this is by signing up for PCT Alerts.

PCT Alerts is a messaging system designed to alert students to situations that may require immediate attention. Students can "opt in" to the system to receive text or email messages (to non-College email accounts) regarding snow closings, individual class cancellations (text message only), security threat warnings, and evacuation instructions. (Note: Penn College email addresses are automatically subscribed to the PCT Alerts system.) Students can subscribe to PCT Alerts through the Student Information System. Once subscribed, they can add additional email addresses (up to five) and one additional cell phone number to the system.

Students can also keep abreast of crime and safety concerns around campus by visiting College Police's Crime Log and Police Activity Blotter on the MyPCT portal.

What It Means to Be NCAA Division III

As many of you know, Penn College is a member of the North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) within NCAA's Division III.

But do you know what that means?

Most of us hear news and watch highlights from NCAA Division I schools (like Penn State, Pitt, Notre Dame, etc.). Athletics in Division III is much different than at these large, scholarship-driven institutions. At Penn College, and in Division III, the student-athlete experience is primarily about their academic pursuits. We don't offer scholarships and virtually all students will go professional in some other field.

We are committed to providing a rewarding experience that enriches and promotes academic and athletic success, sportsmanship, fair play, accountability, amateurism, integrity, and teamwork for student-athletes. Our Coaches and Athletic Department always place academic success, fair and equitable treatment, and the health and welfare of student-athletes first in all decisions.

While we are most proud of our student-athletes when they walk across the stage at graduation, we are also delighted at their success on the court or field.

Learn more and follow the Wildcat teams on the Athletics website.

Women's Basketball

Penn College's women's basketball team has witnessed a pair of significant individual accomplishments this season. Senior Jamie Steer became the all-time leading scorer in program history on January 24 against SUNY Poly when she broke her sister Kiersten's record of 1,246 career points. Junior Alicia Ross made history of her own on February 7 against Cazenovia when she joined the Steer sisters as the third player in program history to reach 1,000 career points.

Wildcat Wishes Featured Package

Send your student a coupon for a pint of ice cream and a giant cookie just because…you love them…to wish them luck…or whatever the occasion. Each cookie is personalized with a short message. Choose from sugar or chocolate chip.

Order this and other Wildcat Wish online.

The College Store

Did you know The College Store has a Facebook Page? We post promotions, important updates, and special store hours. Like us today!

Textbook Buyback

“When can my student sell back his book?”

Buyback is available almost every day of the year; however, the official BUYBACK is always around Finals Week. Remind your child to walk over to the College Store after each final to return his or her rental or sell us back the book! The College Store wants to buy ALL books from students, even those titles bought from other sources.

Visit the store online.

Financial Aid News

  • Completing the FAFSA – Get Your FSA ID Now
  • Penn College Scholarship Application Available for Completion
  • PA Residents and PA State News

Financial Aid News

Want more? Read daily news items at PCToday, the source for news and information at Pennsylvania College of Technology.

PCToday

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