A basketball game changed Matt Emmerling’s career.
That’s how he first saw a particular vending machine, one without products high in sugar, salt and calories. He would later hear an ad on the radio about Fresh Healthy Vending and couldn’t resist learning more, so he called the company.
“When I learned more about it I thought about how much I wanted to do it,” he said. “I felt like I was ready for something like this.”
Emmerling became a franchisee of the vending company, leaving the pharmaceutical industry, and poured all of his time into setting up small snack shops around central Pennsylvania. The ones in State College are few and far between — at The Retreat, Lionheart Fitness, the State College Municipal Building, the Willowbank office in State College and North Club. He has other locations outside of the county.
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The concept, he said, is catching on.
“There’s a lot of learning, because it’s new to me,” Emmerling said. “It keeps getting better in the locations I have them. I’m talking with a lot of people to get more installed. There are a lot of good locations these can go, and this is really catching on in Pennsylvania.”
The San Diego-based company, which was founded at about the same time as when Michelle Obama launched her Let’s Move campaign, hopes to fill a gap that most vendors don’t — with foods that fill you the right way.
“I think there is a trend toward people, especially college students, being health conscious,” Emmerling said.
His biggest placement goal, he said, is getting machines set up on Penn State’s campus to target that demographic.
The good life
Social media is the prominent means for most people to learn more about the world around them.
Live It U, a a nonprofit app created by Penn State students, hopes to take a slice of the pie — a big chunk of it actually, when you consider there are about 40,000 students and 800 Penn State organizations.
Trying to sift through all of the events posted on social media can be hard, but the app takes a bite out of the middle man.
Live It U, developed by graduates like Ricky Jabarin and students such as Jay Adams, has been a growing hit on campus, and their idea was simple. The app serves as a platform to get a snapshot of all the events happening in town. The idea was formulated in Consumer Behavior Marketing class last fall.
A recent partnership with the Penn State Marketing Association could propel the app, which has had about 1,200 downloads so far, into greater heights.
Its creators hope to expand their reach State College residents and also to be applicable in other town and gowns.
OrderUp adds up
Hotel State College & Co., which includes Corner Room, Allen Street Grill, Bill Pickle’s Tap Room and Zeno’s Pub, have added delivery through OrderUp.
“We are thrilled to have OrderUp give our customers the opportunity to enjoy our great food without needing to leave the comfort of their home,” Hotel State College & Co. Director of Operations Curtis Shulman said.
The eateries will offer their full menus via delivery every day from 9 a.m. to midnight, but the service will not be available during home Penn State football games from 5 p.m. Fridays until Sunday mornings.
Patrons can visit www.orderup.com or download the OrderUp app for iOS or Android to order.
“We saw this as a great opportunity for a partnership between beloved State College brands and are excited to share that with locals,” said Casey Macioge, OrderUp State College general manager.
Big wigs like Penn State President Eric Barron and Google chief education evangelist Jamie Casap will gather at the university Nov. 2-4 for a summit on education.
The Penn State EdTech Network host it for thought leaders from about 50 companies, including Apple and IBM, at the Penn Stater Conference Center Hotel.
Barron will kickoff the summit. Casap, a part of the team that launched Google Apps for universities and K-12, will be the keynote speaker. His presentation will be live streamed at 9 a.m. Friday.
“Technology is not the sole solution in re-imagining education,” Casap said. “It is a powerful enabling and supporting capability. It is meant to be used by teachers and professors to think about how they can use these tools to empower students with the knowledge, skills and abilities they need to thrive in our new, globally connected, knowledge-based economy.”
Break-out sessions will also be held to develop solutions for fostering academic excellence, creating the next generation digital learning environment, guiding student and alumni engagement and scaling operations.
Penn State student entrepreneurs will showcase projects, including Pennie the CoRobot, Lion Launchpad Accelerator and Learn Nano, at 6 p.m. Nov. 3 at the Hintz Alumni Center.
Workshop for women’s health
Geisinger will offer a free women’s wellness workshop from 5:15 to 9 p.m. Nov. 12 at the Ramada Conference Center in State College.
An overview of effective ways to manage your health through the different phases of your life and new trends and guidelines in women’s health begins at 6 p.m. Workshops covering various health topics will be offered at 7:20 and 8:10 p.m.
Free health screenings and activities will include stroke assessment, blood pressure, breast cancer assessment, yoga class, product vendors and refreshments.
To register, call 943-6053.