ALTOONA, Pa. – Lori J. Bechtel-Wherry, chancellor and dean of Penn State Altoona, today announced the launch of a new Engineering Leadership Development (ELD) Program at the campus. The program, in partnership with the College of Engineering at University Park, will offer Altoona students advanced online technical electives in leadership principles, project management, entrepreneurship, leadership of organizations and international collaboration. An 18-credit undergraduate minor will also be available to students who complete a prescribed course sequence.
Beyond the classroom, a newly founded Penn State Altoona Engineering Leadership Society (ELS) will offer professional enrichment experiences, including guest speakers, local industry tours, interaction with senior engineering executives, career mentoring and an annual recognition dinner. A full calendar of ELS activities will be published prior to the Fall 2022 semester.
“The ELD program will offer a transformational experience to Altoona engineering students,” stated Chancellor Bechtel-Wherry. “I am excited at the professional growth opportunities that lie ahead.”
Steven Betza, a 1982 Penn State engineering graduate and retired Lockheed Martin corporate director, will serve as a professor of practice, a periodic executive-in-residence and career mentor for the program. A program coordinator, chosen from the Penn State Altoona faculty, will be announced in the near future.
“The career of today’s engineering graduates will extend well into the 2060s,” noted Betza. “Emerging technologies come and go, but leadership skills are timeless.”
Students enrolled in Rail Transportation Engineering (RTE), Electro-Mechanical Engineering Technology (EMET) or Mechanical Engineering (ME) majors or in Penn State Altoona’s 2+2 Engineering program are encouraged to begin their leadership journey through Fall 2022 enrollment in ENGR 408 – Leadership Principles, the program’s online introductory elective. Once enrolled, they will receive a personalized welcome to the Altoona ELD program and an invitation to participate in Engineering Leadership Society activities.
For questions related to the Engineering Leadership Development program, contact Professor of Practice Steven J. Betza at [email protected].