The Purcell Interactive Learning Center (PILC) was developed to create a learning environment that highlights the rich agricultural history of the Milton Hershey School. Visitors are able to hear “straight from the cow’s mouth” information about what cows eat, where their food is stored and about milk production. There is a weights and measures section that features different measuring devices and an old feed scale. Visitors can try their hand at milking a cow model by hand or by hooking up a milking machine to the cow’s utter and feel the suction of a automatic milking machine. The PILC also features a large map showing the locations of the original Milton Hershey School farm homes and includes photos of those homes. There are also two computer kiosk areas one that showcases the 1930’s through 1950’s and the other the 1960’s through the 1980’s. Using the computer touch screen, guests can see photos, watch old videos and hear alumni and retirees share their farm memories.
The milk house area displays describe the “cow to table” milk process. There are also computer kiosk games with touch screen computers where guests can test what they’ve learned. Throughout the entire exhibit there are personal alumni stories about life on the farm and other interesting “farm facts”. Although primarily designed with a younger visitor in mind, visitors of all ages enjoy learning about this important aspect of the Milton Hershey School’s heritage.