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Lawmakers get a look at Penn College template for success

The state’s lawmakers are working on a Workplace Development Package, a set of bills aimed at smoothly placing students in careers.

To that end, several members of the state House Majority Policy Committee recently toured the Pennsylvania College of Technology.

They could not have picked a better example of fitting education training to professional needs.

Representatives went through Penn College’s nursing program, which is geared to alleviating Pennsylvania’s need for qualified nurses and move nurses who have earned their associate degree to earn a bachelor or master’s degree.

They toured the plastics engineering department, where students experiment with plastics and the molds to make them.

And they toured the welding department to see students on the cutting edge of metallurgy.

The committee ended the tour by going to Lycoming Engines, which is fitting because 25 percent of Lycoming Engines employees are Penn College students.

The company’s officials have told Penn College’s administrators that they may have moved from the area if the workforce was not so readily available.

Penn College’s overall batter of practical education programs that feed workforce needs is the main reason its graduation and placement rates have been nearly 100 percent for several years.

All education matters.

But where post-high school education is concerned, the practical application of education programs to match the interests of students with the needs of employers should be a greater priority, especially given the price tag attached to all college educations.

Penn College is a living, breathing template for how the partnership of education and professional careers should look.

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