Penn State Altoona to host ‘Destination Unknown’ career path panel

Ink Factory live drawing representing the Destination Unknown program

Penn State Altoona will offer "Destination Unknown: Mapping Career Pathways in the 21st Century" on March 24, 12:15-1:00 p.m. in the Eve Chapel.

Credit: Penn State

ALTOONA, Pa. — Penn State Altoona will offer “Destination Unknown: Mapping Career Pathways in the 21st Century” at 12:15 p.m. on Thursday, March 21, online via Zoom.

A panel of three Penn State graduates who have built professional expertise from different academic disciplines will answer questions from current students. The series is designed to help students who may be weighing talents and interests against employability and a “sensible” major or who are pondering what a college education means in the long run.

Dr. Barry Minemeyer came to Penn State Altoona to play on the men’s basketball team and receive a college degree (in this order of priority). That he would major in mathematics and choose a career in the field was not even a passing thought for him, the first in his family to pursue higher education. It did not take long, though, for Minemeyer’s superior talent in mathematics and his love for the subject to emerge.

After receiving his bachelor’s degree from Penn State Altoona in 2007, Minemeyer attended Binghamton University, where he earned his Ph.D. in mathematics in 2013, specializing in metric geometry and differential geometry. Now he is an associate professor of mathematics at Bloomsburg Commonwealth University, engaged in a fulfilling, interesting career, as he sees it.  And when Minemeyer is not doing math? Athletics are still part of his life, whether he is supporting his teams as an avid Pittsburgh sports fan or dribbling the ball across the court.  

Ahmad S.H. Al Monawer arrived at Penn State Altoona as an international student from Kuwait, pursuing the Penn State 2+2 academic plan and finishing his education at University Park. He was a Schreyer Honors Scholar and earned two bachelor of science degrees in economics and industrial engineering. He also completed minors in business administration and history.

Al Monawer currently works as a senior investment analyst and senior investment researcher for the Kuwait Investment Authority in Kuwait City, Kuwait, leading teams in a range of projects and research enterprises.

Tera Nelson earned a bachelor of fine arts degree in photography and a minor in psychology from Penn State University Park. Her intersecting talents and varied competencies have led her to a vibrant career as a branding expert and marketing strategist, including founding her own marketing agency.

She has worked with Fortune 500 clients such as Adobe and Amazon as well as entrepreneurs ranging from Olympic athletes to actor Harrison Ford's interior designer. In recent years, her focus has shifted to working solely with passion-driven entrepreneurs, which is what ultimately led her to becoming marketing director at Servpro.