Welcome to Insite


Spring 2020

Coming Together

Folks from EHS and Research collaborated to gather pandemic supplies to help with the shortage at Mount Nittany Medical Center and University Health Services. Great work coming together in a time of need!

Those involved were: 

Dave Bertocchi, EHS

Steve Triebold, EHS

Alissa Hanshew, EHS

Eden Crum, EHS

Bonnie Auman, EHS

Jim Crandall, EHS

Ruth Weber, Research

Community Values

Shoutout to Hunter Addleman (Custodial Worker), who has been delivering groceries to elderly folks in his neighborhood, a great example of our core value of Community! Proactive Approach

From Brooks Meyers (Supervisor, General Services): Dave McCool (Sign Painter) and John Daulby (Painter) proactively reached out to me concerning equipment in their respective shops. 

Dave McCool instructed me on proper shutdown procedures of the digital printers in the sign shop so that the print heads don’t get ruined.

John Daulby walked me through how to cycle the lacquer pump in the paint both so it doesn’t get gummed up.

These actions saved thousands of dollars in repair/replacement of these pieces of equipment and speaks volumes as to the care and concern these guys have.

Pump Repair

Thanks to John Cain (Mechanic, Pumps) and Dan Rauch (Mechanic, Pumps) for a recent pump repair at the main dairy barns to keep the milking process up and running! Above and Beyond Darin Bressler (Supervisor, HVAC), passed along a shoutout to Mariah Jabco (Administrative Support Assistant) for continuing to go above and beyond. Thanks, Mariah!

Custom Steam Seal

From Ron Pristash (Utility Systems Engineer): PSU Engineering Services, Steam Services and Team Inc. collaborated to design a custom seal for steam expansion joints.  The first version of this seal was installed during the Thanksgiving break at the HUB building steam takeoff.  After a routine follow up injection of seal packing, the expansion joint has remained leak free for more than four months! This seal not only removes the live steam safety hazard in the tunnel, it also saves wasted energy.  The seal prevents unplanned steam interruptions to the buildings and having to take an emergency outage. Work for Research Shoutout to Dave Benner (Sheet Metal Worker), who recently did some stainless-steel work on cages for research!

Crew Compliment

JJ Murphy (IT Manager, Office of the President) reached out to compliment Darren Dixon (Area Facilities Maintenance Worker), Steve Shawver (Area Facilities Maintenance Mechanic) and Stan Walker (Area Facilities Maintenance Worker) for always being great to work with. From JJ: "My kudos to them and look forward to continuing to work with them in the future!"

Leaking Heater Fixed

From John Ewton, Global Programs: I appreciate Neal Proctor (Area Facilities Maintenance Mechanic) and Jay Eckenrode (Heating and Ventilation Technician) taking care of the leaking heater so quickly! They fixed the first leak and then discovered a second leak that required them to weld/solder something.  They also fixed that leak and put my desk back together.

Customer Appreciation

Recently, there was a building electrical shutdown at Hosler for a project to replace the existing switch gear. A customer commented on the performance of some of our Electrical Integrity Crew and the Weekend Shift Trades Crew: “The shutdown went as smooth as smooth can go, the crews did a great job and communicated with me throughout the entire shutdown."

Fall 2019

United Way Holiday 50/50

Thank you to all who participated in OPP's Holiday 50/50 raffle. We raised $1,105.50 in support of the United Way, another example of our commitment to the value of community.

Congratulations to Marcus McGuire and Cyle Vogt , winners of the 50/50 drawing.

Holiday Donation

Kudos to District 12 Custodial! This holiday season, District 12 collected and donated a variety of items to Pets Come First:

  • 52 pounds of cat litter
  • 48 pounds of dry cat food
  • 43 cans of wet cat food
  • 82 pounds of dry dog food
  • 6 cans of wet dog food
  • 4 pounds of dog treats
  • 20 rolls of paper towels

Excellent Customer Service

From Joyce Stamm, strategic communications: It's been a few weeks since my office moved out of University Support Building 1 and we are getting settled into our new building. Nonetheless, I wanted to be sure to send an email expressing our department's gratitude for everything that both Donna Ash and Lisa Reschke had done to expedite countless paper, trash and everything in between that was being dumped prior to our move. My department was housed at USB 1 for 30+ years, so one can only imagine the undertaking that was required and we simply couldn't have done it without them.  Both Donna and Lisa need to be recognized and commended as they both were extraordinary in executing a system that immensely kept our office on time and accountable. They both presented themselves with poise, patience, and excellent "customer service" that was so pleasant (especially on the days that we, ourselves just wanted to give up).  On behalf of the staff at University Marketing ....... THANK YOU to both Donna and Lisa! We are missing them both.

"Amazing Job"

From Christine Ebeling, center director, The Child Care Center at Hort Woods: Barb Foose has really had a positive impact on the evening janitorial crew. I can see the relationships she has built with her team. She is here every night checking on them and providing them with the tools they need to do the job. Our building has been thoroughly cleaned with vast improvements this fall. I have especially noted to her directly the cleanliness of the kitchen and bathrooms. She has done an amazing job and we are thrilled to work alongside her.

Custodial Thanks

Carolyn Gette, marketing communications specialist for Undergraduate Education, passed along appreciation for the work of Tim Meyer : I wanted to say thank you to the OPP staff that helped with a problem in Wagner Building yesterday. Someone had gotten sick in a restroom so I called Area 1 and they were able to send a custodian very quickly. The gentleman was so kind, quick, and did a great job.

Game Ball Winners

Many members from OPP help make Penn State Football game days possible each week. A couple of them were recently recognized for going above and beyond to see that the games are all they should be for the fans. This season, Tim Smeltzer and Dave McCool have each received tickets to a game to watch from the press box and meet athletic director Sandy Barbour.

Day of Caring

From Mary Sorenson, executive director of the Centre County Historical Society: Thank you much to the Landscape and Arboriculture Crews for all of your hard work at the Centre Furnace Mansion! As always, everyone is so professional and kind. The Mansion and Schoolhouse grounds look just amazing.

We are so grateful for all that was done and given on the Day of Caring both at the Centre Furnace Mansion and Boogersburg School historic sites. I cannot overstate that all of this work would be out of reach for us if it weren't for this donation of time, staff and materials. 

Brian Phiel 

Tracy Crust

Andrea Rafferty

Kyle Gallardy

Amy Sward

Theresa Heaton

Crystal Kyle

Nate Potter

Norm Parks

Jeremy Vonada

Again, please accept our deepest thanks for all that Penn State Landscaping and Arboriculture did for CCHS at the Mansion. It really means everything.

Community Appreciation

From a member of the College Heights Association: I would like to highly commend Chad Spackman for his communication with College Heights residents and the College Heights Association during the renovation of the College Heights School. He kept us well informed throughout the project and responded quickly to residents' questions and concerns. He also organized a very well-attended open house that was greatly appreciated by residents. Several people had attended the school and very much enjoyed seeing the renovated building.

Great Grounds

A guest who recently stayed at the Penn Stater completed an online survey. The guest mentioned they walked around campus and said "the grounds are lovely."

Above and Beyond

Clara Drummond, a curator and exhibitions coordinator with Penn State Libraries, reached out to thank John Daulby and Ashley Dutrow, who "went above and beyond" fixing their wall and installing a new vinyl image in Special Collections. Clara noted that she appreciated the professionalism and expertise that was shown.


From Rob Gavlock, facilities supervisor: "District 51 custodial supervisor Doug Hagman graduated from the APPA Institute for Facilities Management, in Nashville, Tennessee. 

The Institute curriculum is composed of four core areas covering general administration and management, maintenance and operations, energy and utilities, and planning, design and construction. In order to graduate, students must complete all of these areas. This curriculum increases the effectiveness and success of individuals in the facilities management profession by developing their leadership, managerial and technical skills; and elevating and broadening their understanding of the profession.

Congratulations, Doug!"

Excellent Work

From Ruth Weber, Assistant Vice President for Research Operations, Office of the Vice President for Research: "Justin Keister (project manager) and Neal McNutt (facilities project coordinator) are doing an excellent job at the Navy Yard. They are handling themselves very professionally in getting the work done."

Fresh Start Collaboration

From Donna Meyer, director of student programs for Schreyer Honors College: "WE ARE..so proud of all who stepped up to volunteer during the Penn State Fresh Start program on Sunday, Sept. 8 and we want to personally thank and recognize members of the Office of Physical Plant team who were instrumental in collaborating with Fresh Start and the Schreyer Honors College this year.  

We are especially grateful for the professional leadership and commitment of Tom Flynn who has provided oversight and coordination of the sites near Atherton Hall for volunteers. We also want to recognize and applaud Laurie Henry, Brian Phiel, Dan Frechen, Jason Hockenberry, John Ronk and Buddy Houck for their time in site preparation and dedication to service.  Each of them served as important role models to our students and we can't thank them enough for helping make this service opportunity a success! The campus is a little greener and our community a little brighter!"

Thank You From Football

Penn State Football reached out to thank crew members who performed work in Lasch Building this summer, noting their diligence, professionalism, timeliness and sense of humor.

Kudos to Ray Yeckley, Chad McGovern, Ken Stover and Jeff Keller!

Exceptional Landscaping

From Derek Kalp, landscape architect: "The plant combinations in the hort areas this year have been really good, even better than past years! However, the bed in front of Grange Building is exceptional. Keep up the great work, Daniel Frechen!"

Cheers Archive