Summer Seminar Banner

Discover PSU Sign Up

Summer Seminar

Summer Seminar on Philately is a once-a-year opportunity to expand your philatelic knowledge and meet others who share your passion and interests. All courses are led by philatelic experts who are accomplished writers, exhibitors, experts, dealers, and specialized collectors.


June 21-25, 2020


Early Bird Registration runs until March 31st.

Questions or Comments?:

Call: 814-933-3810 or Email:

Introduction to Forensic Philately

A 2-Day Course Presented by Garfield Portch

Wednesday, June 24 – Thursday, June 25, 2020

What is a VSC6000? The Video Spectral Comparator is used by the APS, Royal Philatelic Society, National Postal Museum, and the Greene Foundation to examine philatelic material. Its use has changed the world of authentication.

Course Description:

The VSC6000 is one of the most comprehensive forensic tools available outside scientific laboratories. Through a generous donation, the APS now has its own VSC6000 and students in this course will be able to use it.
Develop your forensic philatelic observation abilities and strengthen your analytical skills while using illumination, magnification, overlay techniques, and spectral analysis.
Through discussion and hands-on experiences, learn the expertizing techniques employed by the Expertizing Committee at the Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation in Toronto for identifying genuine, altered, faked, and forged items.

***This course is being offered twice, once on Monday-Tuesday and once on Wednesday-Thursday

Intended Audience:

Advanced collectors, members of expert committees, and philatelic researchers who wish to expand their inspection processes to include scientific methodologies.
Participants need not be concerned about the science or mathematics employed by the VSC6000 as all that is handled by the computer.

Meet the Instructor

Garfield Portch

Garfield Portch is the Chairman of the Vincent Graves Greene Philatelic Research Foundation and serves as the forensic examiner on the VGG Expert Committee.
He has been an active philatelist for 50+ years and is a member of several societies including: The Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (Fellow); British North America Philatelic Society (Emeritus); Canadian Philatelic Society of Great Britain; American Association of Philatelic Exhibitors; Philatelic Specialists Society of Canada and the West Toronto Stamp Club.
This accomplished philatelic exhibitor, has earned Gold medals for various exhibits of the Small Queens of Canada (1870 to 1897) and for postal history in Toronto between 1793 and 1901.
Portch has also been heavily involved in the management of several stamp shows, including STAMPEX 2003, 2004, 2005; Ameristamp Expo 2006; ROYAL * 2007* ROYALE and, most recently ROYAL * 2019 * ROYALE.

There are 0 spaces left in this course


Course Listing

4-Day Courses Monday-Thursday (June 22-25)

Important Information

Distinguished Philatelist

Distinguished Philatelist Dennis Gilson

The Summer Seminar Distinguished Philatelist award recognizes an individual who has demonstrated dedication, leadership, and commitment to the hobby. 

Dennis has been a member of the American Philatelic Society since January 1977 and received the 2016 Luff Award and the Century Award Plaque. He is a member of the APEX Expert committee, volunteers regularly at the APC and is an esteemed Summer Seminar Instructor.

Engage with us