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Penn State back in town


Campus was busy Aug. 19 when about 300 students moved in Penn State’s on-campus housing on the Capitol Campus.

Student volunteers helped new students find their way around the campus, getting acclimated to the setting. MoveIn6

Classes began Monday, Aug. 22, with about 5,000 students registered for classes at the campus in Lower Swatara Twp., one of the largest of the university’s Commonwealth Campuses.




Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 August 2016 15:29

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A NEW HOME: Finishing touches still being completed

newHS7SLIDEPrincipal Michael Carnes checks out the Apple TV system set up to support the use of iPads and other media in Beth Gannon-Rittenhouse's 10th grade English classroom.


The new Middletown Area High School will be ready for the first day of classes on Monday, Aug. 29.

Superintendent Lori Suski guarantees it. At the same time, it was obvious from our tour of the building on Friday, Aug. 19, that there is still work to be done.

People working for the contractor and the building architect could be found all over the new school, attending to what Suski called a “punch list” of last-minute to-dos. There were men on ladders, men painting, men putting in and adjusting shelves, and floors still to be waxed.

Working and moving around all this are the administrators, building staff, and the teachers — who started moving in on Monday, Aug. 15. There are still piles of boxes yet to be unpacked. 

Some students can also be found in the building. The football players and other fall student athletes got in first so they could start practicing for the new season.

More lately, students with the “Link Crew” peer assistance club have been roaming the halls of the building. These students will be escorts for tours of the new high school being given to students and parents that started Monday, Aug. 22.

Student tours of the new high school were given Monday for seniors and juniors, on Tuesday for sophomores and freshmen, and today, Aug. 24, for any students who cannot make the tours on the first two days.

The big public unveiling won’t be until Friday, Oct. 21, when an open house of the new high school will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. as part of Homecoming Weekend festivities. 

Getting to this point marks completion of a four-year journey, starting with the design process in July 2012, Suski said. Ground was broken on the new high school at a cost not to exceed $40.3 million in June 2014.

The $40.3 million estimate was before bids for the project came in, Suski told the Press And Journal in an email. The final actual cost of $41 million also reflects change orders associated with building the new high school. Approved change orders totaled less than 1 percent of the project cost, compared to the “industry standard” of 3 to 5 percent, Suski said.

There was no contingency or back-up plan in case the new high school wasn’t ready by Aug. 29, because Suski said she knew it would be.

“I have attended 57 construction conferences every other Monday for the past two years. We have monitored everything,” Suski said. At times, crews were brought in to work Saturday and Sunday and virtually “around the clock” to keep on schedule and meet the deadlines.

“We’re in good shape,” she said. 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 August 2016 15:25

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PSU Student Enrichment Center

Center ExteriorPress And Journal photos by Eric Wise

As Penn State students arrived on campus Aug. 19 for the fall semester, many stopped by to visit the new 70,000-square-foot Student Enrichment Center.

The center, features a comfortable student lounge, The Outpost (a cafe) and Provisions (a convenience store), the book store, a new theater/lecture hall, spiritual center, student counseling, disability services and international student support services.

TheOutpost Sign



Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 August 2016 15:10

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Out & About: MASD High School

newHSclassroomA 10th grade English classroom in the new high school.

Teachers are unpacking boxes and workers are applying the finishing touches to the new $41 million Middletown Area High School.

A sneak preview of the building in advance of the start of school on Monday, Aug. 29 was given to the Press And Journal by high school Principal Michael Carnes.

The official open house and unveiling of the new high school to the public will take place from 5 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 21, as part of Homecoming Weekend festivities.

For more Press And Journal photos of the new high school, check out our print edition or click here for our E-edition.


newHS.auditoriumThe new Blue Raider auditorium is larger, with room for 54 more seats and a stage nearly twice as big as in the old high school.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 August 2016 15:11

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The Middletown Area High School band has been taking part in its annual band camp.
Last week, it went from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. For this week and next, it’s in the evening, from
6 to 9 p.m., as band members try to stay cool.


Photos by Jodi Ocker
for the
Press And Journal








Last Updated on Tuesday, 16 August 2016 16:22

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