The History of South Hills School of Business & Technology
South Hills School of Business & Technology is the product of necessity, creativity, economics, dreams, and hard work.
S. Paul Mazza Jr. (1930-2013) and his wife, Maralyn, founded South Hills in 1970 when they saw the need for more specialized skills training in central Pennsylvania. Starting with only seven students in the first class, it is now training over five hundred students each year. This growth is attributed to the Mazza family’s philosophy that all decisions are made on the basis of “what’s best for the students”.
From 1970 to 1982, South Hills School found its home on Allen Street in State College, PA. In August 1982, South Hills moved to larger quarters, a former elementary school building, in Boalsburg, PA. In January 1989, South Hills returned to State College—its original home. The Mazzas' son, S. Paul Mazza III, oversaw the construction plans for the campus building on Waupelani Drive to ensure that it would serve the technological needs of a growing school.
South Hills School of Business & Technology has been continuously accredited by ACICS since 1976.
In 1980, South Hills was granted approval to award the Associate in Specialized Business (ASB) degree in five program areas. In 1997 approval was granted to award the Associate in Specialized Technology (AST) degree. The school currently offers six ASB degree programs: Administrative Medical Assistant, Administrative Professional, Business Administration—Accounting, Business Administration—Management & Marketing, Criminal Justice, and Medical Assistant. It currently offers five AST degree programs: Diagnostic Medical Sonography, Engineering Technology, Graphic Arts, Health Information Technology, and Information Technology. South Hills also offers two diploma programs: Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional and Diagnostic Medical Sonography Professional Plus.
The Philipsburg, PA location was added in 1996 at the request of the Moshannon Valley Economic Development Partnership. This location closed in 2013.
The Lewistown, PA location was added in 1999 at the request of the Mifflin County Industrial Development Corporation (MDIDC). Lewistown was granted approval to offer four ASB degree programs: Administrative Professional, Business Administration—Management & Marketing, Criminal Justice, and Medical Assistant. It was granted approval to offer an AST degree in Information Technology.
In 2001, the Altoona, PA campus was opened when South Hills purchased the former Altoona School of Commerce. Altoona was granted approval to offer six ASB degree programs: Administrative Medical Assistant, Administrative Professional, Business Administration—Accounting, Business Administration—Management & Marketing, Criminal Justice, and Medical Assistant. It was granted approval to offer two AST degree programs: Health Information Technology and Information Technology.
Maralyn Mazza served as the Director of South Hills until her retirement in 2008 when Mr. Mark Maggs took the position. She has served in an advisory role ever since. Under the direction of Mr. Maggs, South Hills is serving a diverse population of recent high school graduates and returning adults. At the main campus in State College, the student/faculty ratio is 10 to 1. The Lewistown student/faculty ratio is 9 to 1. The Altoona student/faculty ratio is 7 to 1.
With the passing of her husband in 2013, Maralyn Mazza became the President of South Hills. Maralyn and Paul’s daughter, Gina Mazza, who had been the Director of Marketing at the school for many years, stepped into the position of Vice-President, a position she held until retiring in late 2014. Her leadership at this crucial time helped to steady South Hills after the loss of its founder. The Mazzas' legacy is now being carried on by their son, S. Paul Mazza III, who was appointed President of South Hills School of Business & Technology in the fall of 2015.
Students do come first at South Hills School of Business & Technology. We try to help the “whole” person with his/her many needs. In addition to the high-quality education, fine faculty, and state-of-the-art equipment, academic advising, recreation, and health are essentials at South Hills.
Paul and Maralyn believed in “Teaching People, Changing Lives,” a timeless ideal that continues to inspire faculty, staff, and students.