Bethlehem Catholic

Providing Quality Experiential Events With Passion

Taking passion and dedication of the academic experience to a unique level, Penn State Wilkes-Barre boasts early beginnings to a nationally acclaimed high school engineering team

“Given their early struggles and disappointing competition outcomes, the fact that Bethlehem Catholic High School is now considered the Best in the Nation for the 2017 TEAMS Competition is truly a testament to their persistence and achievements,” explains Admissions Officer John Barnes. “As a long standing host of the regional TEAMS competition, our campus provides quality experiential on-campus events for high school students.”

TEAMS is an annual competition that gives students an opportunity to discover engineering and how knowledge in engineering can help make a difference in the world.  Students work collaboratively to solve real-world engineering challenges, applying their math and science skills in practical, creative ways. Penn State Wilkes-Barre has been hosting the Northeast Regional competition, co-sponsored by the Keystone Northeast Chapter of Pennsylvania Society of Professional Engineers for twenty two years.

“Kudos to John and Penn State Wilkes-Barre enough for all the work they do to introduce engineering to the students of our region, mine in particular,” stated Anthony Messina, Bethlehem Catholic High School’s TEAMS Coach. “I can’t encourage my students to pursue the field of engineering with their help. Their passion and dedication for engineering truly is a powerful tool.”

In addition to the TEAMS event, Penn State Wilkes-Barre hosts annual events for high school students such as: Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) Interactive Workshops, Engineering Open House, Trig Star Competition, and the regional Science Olympiad.

“Almost all the local educational institutions in the area offer a variety of academically oriented presentations and competition,” says Barnes. “Penn State Wilkes-Barre has our own set of unique offerings and we are thrilled when students continue on beyond our campus to national glory, as Bethlehem Catholic has. We get to say, they started here.”

Chancellor Dale Jones echoes Barnes’ sentiments. “Bethlehem Catholic’s success is a great reflection on the entire campus for the experiences we’re able to provide along the way to their national title.”

The FBLA Interactive Workshop, held each fall, is a hands-on event designed to engage FBLA high school students in meaningful dialogue, creative thought and reflective opinions. FBLA students have the opportunity to become familiar with the Penn State Wilkes-Barre campus and the Business Program possibilities “in their backyard” and at The Smeal College of Business located at University Park. They’re encouraged to discuss career interests with current Business Club students, faculty and successful Business alumni.

Also held in the fall, the Engineering Open House is an excellent opportunity for students to learn about careers in engineering and engineering technology and meet the Penn State engineering faculty as they participate in departmental presentations. Students are exposed to a variety of engineering disciplines and discover their relationships to mathematics and science.

The regional Science Olympiad, held over Penn State Wilkes-Barre’s spring break, is devoted to improving the quality of science education, increasing student interest in science, and providing recognition for outstanding achievement in science education. For the past 33 years, Science Olympiad has led a revolution in science education. What began as a grassroots assembly of science teachers is now one of the premier science competitions in the nation, providing rigorous, standards-based challenges.

Geared specifically to students interested in Surveying Engineering, a degree offered only at the Wilkes-Barre campus in the Penn State system, the Trig Star Competition rounds out the events being held in the spring. An annual high school mathematics competition sponsored by the National Society of Professional Surveyors that focuses on practical applications of Trigonometry, Trig Star promotes and recognizes mastery of trigonometry among high school students as well as acquaint students with practical applications of trigonometry in the Engineering professions.

For more information on getting involved in any of Penn State Wilkes-Barre’s on campus, high school events, please contact John Barnes at jsb2@psu.edu.