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  • Lafayette Electronic Technology Instructor Pens and Publishes Textbook with Cengage Learning

    Congratulations to our own Kevin McGowan, an Electronic Technology Instructor at Remington College - Lafayette Campus, on the recent release of his textbook, Semiconductors from Book to Breadboard: Complete Textbook/Lab Manual, published by Cengage Learning.

    More than two years in the making, Semiconductors from Book to Breadboard is Mr. McGowan's first technical publication. Through its lesson-to-lab format, the 320-page manual uses simple terms, along with multiple learning reinforcements and hands-on exercises, to help users identify, test, and troubleshoot diodes, transistors, op amps, and other devices. The textbook covers how to build, observe, and analyze power supplies, amplifiers, oscillators, electronic control circuits, and more.

    From Idea to Bound Book

    "The idea for this book stemmed from the need to provide an immediate, smooth transition from lecture to lab in a single classroom period; thus, the book is a combination text/lab manual. My years of teaching electronics courses have been a process of continual refinement, and being a working technician and teacher, I have learned what works for students and what skills are needed in the workplace," said Mr. McGowan.

    After Mr. McGowan initially submitted a book proposal to Cengage, an anonymous version was circulated to electronic teachers of semiconductors. The proposal received positive reviews, and Mr. McGowan was given the green light to write a first draft of the entire book, including hand-drawn circuits. Later, the completed first draft was sent anonymously to electronic teachers, who verified the technical accuracy and made suggestions for improvement. After several revisions, the final draft was sent to the production company, which arranged the text, drawings, and labs into book form.

    Technology and Electronics Background

    Kevin McGowan has been teaching electronic and basic computer courses at Remington College in Lafayette since 1998. His career began as a communications system specialist and paratrooper in the United States Army, where he installed, tested, and repaired FM radios, switchboards, and other electronic equipment. After graduating from Penn State with a degree in electronics, he worked as a maintenance technician in a paper processing plant. He was an electronic technician for Baker Hughes Inteq before joining Remington College.

    Reactions and Note of Thanks

    Lafayette Degree Department Chairperson Jason Bruno said, "We are elated that one of our own has accomplished this very admirable endeavor of being published. It brings us pride that a professor has dedicated so much of his time and effort to exhibiting his talents in this way. We are extremely proud of Kevin!"

    "I'd like to thank the administration at Remington for giving me the opportunity to teach all the electronic courses. I also want to thank the faculty and staff for their ongoing encouragement and support," said Mr. McGowan.

    Other Noteworthy Accomplishments

    Mr. McGowan also has degrees in English and education and is a Certification Administrator for the International Society of Certified Electronics Technicians (ISCET). In addition, he has written two poetry chapbooks: Rubric (© 2004 from Pudding House Publications) and No Passengers (© 2005 from The Backwaters Press).

    Semiconductors from Book to Breadboard is currently available from and other book vendors. For ordering information and to read the product overview, click here.