PJ Dick and Trumbull support engineering facilities expansion with $1M gift

Largest classroom in new facility to be named after two Penn State engineering alumni

November 16, 2022

By Sarah Small

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Jeff Turconi and George Mezey know the value of a Penn State education firsthand, as alumni themselves and as employers for PJ Dick and Trumbull Corporation, members of a general contracting and construction family of companies. Turconi, a 1982 architectural engineering graduate and president of PJ Dick, and Mezey, a 1979 civil engineering graduate and retired president of Trumbull, have a strong history of giving back to the College of Engineering. Now, their companies are honoring them and their contributions to Penn State and to their employer with a $1 million gift to name the largest classroom in West 1, a new engineering facility set to open at University Park in spring 2024.

The gift from PJ Dick and Trumbull Corporation will name classroom 102 inside West 1 the George Mezey and Jeff Turconi Classroom, which will welcome many engineering students, especially those from the civil and environmental engineering and architectural engineering departments. At 3,040 square feet, it is the largest classroom in either West 1 or West 2, the two newest College of Engineering buildings under construction as part of the college’s facilities plan to provide expanded state-of-the-art experiential education and collaboration space for students, faculty, staff, alumni and industry partners at University Park.  

“PJ Dick and Trumbull have long supported Penn State’s College of Engineering students through scholarships, internships and full-time employment,” said Jake Ploeger, co-chief executive officer of PJ Dick and Trumbull. “The college does a tremendous job in developing students’ skillsets, making them excellent candidates for the construction industry. Naming this classroom in honor of Jeff Turconi and George Mezey is a fitting tribute to their personal contributions to our company and to the College of Engineering at Penn State.” 

West 1 was designed as a welcoming hub to gather engineering community members and collaborators around thematic research challenges that cross traditional divisions between disciplines. It also will be the home for the civil and environmental engineering and architectural engineering programs, the programs from which Turconi and Mezey graduated. The leaders have also supported both programs through PJ Dick and Trumbull scholarships, and they have contributed to a fund dedicated to reestablishing a program in construction engineering and management.

According to Justin Schwartz, interim provost and executive vice president of Penn State, who was the Harold and Inge Marcus Dean in the College of Engineering at the time of the gift, such support is key to the continued momentum of the college’s facilities plan implementation and all that it will enable across the University and engineering at large. 

“The George Mezey and Jeff Turconi Classroom will be a space where engineering students not only learn the technical skills needed to become excellent engineers, but also the professional skills needed to have a significant impact in industry and on the world,” Schwartz said. “As such, it is especially meaningful that it will be named for two graduates and consistent supporters of the civil and environmental engineering and architectural engineering programs. We are extremely grateful for the generosity of Jeff, George and PJ Dick and Trumbull, through scholarships and program gifts. Their support of the Penn State College of Engineering directly benefits students and researchers, furthering our position as a leading international engineering program.”

With the record-breaking success of “A Greater Penn State for 21st Century Excellence,” which raised $2.2 billion from 2016 to 2022, philanthropy is helping to sustain the University’s mission of education, research and service to communities across the commonwealth and around the globe. Scholarships enable Penn State to open doors and welcome students from every background, support for transformative experiences allows students and faculty to fulfill their vast potential for leadership, and gifts toward discovery and excellence help serve and impact the world. To learn more about the impact of giving and the continuing need for support, please visit raise.psu.edu.


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