Penn State Wilkes-Barre faculty member nominated for STEAM award

Penn State Wilkes-Barre Assistant Teaching Professor of Engineering Jeffrey Chiampi has been nominated for the Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce’s STEAM Professional of the Year award.

The honor is part of the sixth annual Young Professional Awards from the Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce, with media partner Times Leader Media Group and presented by Coal Creative.

Every year, young professionals in northeastern Pennsylvania are nominated in 10 award categories. The top three finalists in each category are recognized at a special awards ceremony, where the category winners are announced and awarded. This year’s event will be an outdoor ceremony at the Garden Drive-in in Hunlock Creek. Nominees must be between the ages of 25 and 40 and live in northeastern Pennsylvania.

The STEAM Professional of the Year award is sponsored by PPL Electric Utilities and overseen by the Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber’s Young Professionals Council, which plans and assists young professionals of Greater Wyoming Valley as they improve their careers, develop their leadership abilities, build their professional networks and give back to the community. STEAM stands for science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics.

Jeff Chiampi
Credit: Penn State

“I’m honored to have been nominated and I’m looking forward to the event,” Chiampi said. “Coding has made such a big impact in my life and getting to share it with my Penn State Wilkes-Barre students and aspiring computer scientists through the Coding the Coal Region project has been extremely fulfilling. I’m looking forward to working with Junior Achievement and Penn State to evolve the program into a sustainable project that allows students to explore coding careers and entrepreneurship.”

Chiampi has been involved with Penn State Wilkes-Barre for many years, beginning as a student and progressing to alumnus, staff member, adjunct faculty and now faculty member. He has been teaching full time at the campus for seven years.

He is the lead instructor for Coding the Coal Region, an initiative that works to increase middle-school and high-school students’ computer programming skills. The program provides free virtual classes for Luzerne County students in grades six to 12 with an emphasis on the foundations of computer programming. He coordinates the program on behalf of Penn State in partnership with the Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce.

Chiampi also conducts research on virtual reality with Assistant Professor of Surveying Engineering Dimitrios Bolkas. The pair received funding to create a virtual reality lab, used for interdisciplinary research investigating the application of VR on surveying education.

He serves as chair of the Faculty Senate at Penn State Wilkes-Barre and is past chair of the Engineering Faculty Council, the faculty governance body for the College of Engineering. Chiampi is also a faculty representative on the University’s advisory committee for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV), often known as drones.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in information sciences and technology, a master of business administration and a master’s degree in software engineering, all from Penn State.

Chiampi won the Greater Wyoming Valley Chamber of Commerce’s Educator of the Year award in 2019. He is a University standardized pilot, allowing him to fly commercially on behalf of Penn State and clear others to do the same. He lives in Harveys Lake with his border collie, with whom he performs agility training weekly.