JOBS1st visits Bernard M. Gordon Learning Factory

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Representatives from Gov. Tom Corbett's JOBS1st initiative were on hand last Thursday (April 10) to tour the Bernard M. Gordon Learning Factory.

The group included Mary Bethea, marketing manager for the Pennsylvania Department of Community & Economic Development (DCED) and Debbie Bowman, executive director of marketing for the DCED.

Several student teams presented their projects for Pennsylvania-based companies VorTic Watches, Solutionwerks, TMP Manufacturing Co. and Penergy Solutions.

Bethea said, "Together with industry, small companies and other clients, the Learning Factory brings the real world into the classroom through projects for engineering students. Many of these projects enable a stronger synergy between the Learning Factory's research and development and the transfer of technology as it relates to economic and work force development."

She added that partnerships between Penn State and businesses put technology on the fast track to commercialization and the marketplace.

DCED works with regional economic development organizations to implement an end-to-end strategy for transitioning technology from the Learning Factory into commercial products that are designed, engineered, produced, marketed and sold by companies based in the state. Bethea explained, "This partnership enables regional economic growth by utilizing a business-friendly environment to attract new companies."

Mary Frecker, director of the Learning Factory, said, "The Learning Factory is happy to partner with DCED to spread the word about the amazing work our students are doing to help advance Pennsylvania-based companies."

Launched by Corbett in 2012, JOBS1st PA supports the continued resurgence of Pennsylvania's manufacturing, life sciences and technology sectors and focuses on renewing and strengthening job training opportunities for Pennsylvanians.

Contacts: 

Mary Frecker

Work Phone: 
814-865-1617

Mary Frecker, professor of mechanical engineering and Learning Factory director

Last Updated April 15, 2014