Using Excerpts in WordPress

I was working on making some adjustments to a new theme in WordPress tonight and was looking for a way to check to see if a excerpt had been specified for a particular post.  When I am creating posts with code snippets in them, I really don’t want all the inline code to show in the excerpt of the post, instead, it should all be rendered when the post is opened.

Seeing as I am fairly new to PHP, I had to do some searching so I wasn’t able to craft a solution easily myself.  I found just what I was looking for over at