Alumni Resources

As alumnus of Michigan Technological University's Graduate School, take pride in being a member of our alumni family! Reconnect with old classmates, stay current on Michigan Tech related news, give back to the Graduate School, and share your story—where has life's journey taken you since leaving campus? 

Graduate Reflections See More

Essa Paterson

Essa Paterson

MS, Geology (2008)

Spending two years abroad as part of the Peace Corps Master’s International program taught me to function more competently within other cultures. This skill is not achievable within the classroom and is valuable both at home and abroad.

Graduate Reflections See More

Melanie Laffin

Melanie Laffin

MS, Mathematical Sciences (2011)

“Without my experience at Michigan Tech, I wouldn’t be on my current career path. I took a course in combinatorics that sparked my fascination enough to switch my major to mathematics. The unparalleled opportunities to study and do research, as well as excellent advising, have fully prepared me to continue my education in a mathematics PhD program.”

Graduate Reflections See More

Teboh Roland

Teboh Roland

PhD, DABR
MS, Physics (2004)
Radiation Oncology Physicist, John Hopkins University Hospital

Dr. Teboh Roland works in an interdisciplinary department to provide cancer care. Teboh’s team of medical professionals applies radiation to treat over 170 cancer patients on a daily basis. They work hard to make sure each patient’s care plan is complete and carried out in a safe manner.

“Entrance into my field is very competitive and continuous success depends, to a large extent, on your physics background. Michigan Tech provided me the solid . . .

Graduate Reflections See More

Cheryl Ball

Cheryl Ball

PhD, Rhetoric and Technical Communication (2005)
Associate Professor of New Media Studies, Illinois State University

“The PhD in Rhetoric and Technical Communication at Michigan Tech taught me to be a flexible, fun scholar. The program allowed me to pursue my own areas of interest within digital writing studies and pushed me into new areas that resonated with a larger, interdisciplinary community.”

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Brian Murphy

Brian Murphy PhD

'90, '92, '96

Starting Companies Comes Naturally to Alum

“I used to fish at Cole’s Creek,” says Brian Murphy ’90 ’92 ‘96. “I’d eat half my sandwich on the way out there, fish for thirty minutes, and finish my sandwich on the way back to my lab to continue my research.”

That mix of nature and technology forms the core of Murphy’s environmentally focused career. The Tech grad first worked for large companies before starting a number of his own ventures. With his former boss and mentor . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Octave Du Temple

Dr. Octave Du Temple

'48, '49, '96

Octave Du Temple, a native of the Copper Country, received bachelor's and master's degrees in chemical engineering from Michigan Tech in 1948 and 1949. His studies were interrupted by military service during World War II, when he taught flying and navigation. He also studied at Northwestern University, where he earned a master's degree in business administration in 1955.

Du Temple worked at the Argonne National Laboratory for several years, and in 1958 he was appointed executive director of . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Dianne M Marsh

'86, '92

Dianne Marsh earned a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Michigan Tech in 1986 and a master’s degree in 1992.

Dianne started her career in 1987 as a Software Engineer for LECO Corporation in Michigan and then worked for AEG-Mictron and Candid Logic before returning to Michigan Tech to earn her master’s degree.  

From 1992 to 2000 she worked for several different companies as a Software Engineer, Independent Consultant and Technical Lead/Software Architect before realizing her dream of starting her own . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Tom Irwin

Tom R. Irwin

'63, '66

Throughout his career, Tom Irwin has used his Michigan Tech degrees to the utmost. He believes luck is preparation and opportunity and “Mich Tech excelled at the preparation, academically and in a very congenial environment”.

As president of Hodgkiss and Douma (H&D) Construction Company of Petoskey, H&D’s emphasis was highway construction, major recreation projects, developments and aggregate production. His 27 year career at H&D began after working with Sivier Construction in Detroit, D&L Contracting in Traverse Cityand Dow Chemical in Midland.

His dedication to Michigan Tech runs long and deep, . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Donald Daavettila

Donald Daavettila

'56, '58

Don Daavettila earned both a bachelor's degree and a master's degree in engineering physics from Michigan Tech in 1956 and 1958 respectively. He was named professor emeritus of physics in 2000.

Daavettila began his career as a scientist at Argonne National Laboratory for more than five years. He then became a nuclear test engineer at the Enrico Fermi Nuclear Plant in Monroe, Michigan, before joining Michigan Tech's nuclear engineering program in 1964. He became an assistant professor in the . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Randall Isaacson

Randall E Isaacson

'88, '86

Randall E. Isaacson graduated from Michigan Technological University in 1986 with a BS in Biological Sciences and an MS in Rhetoric and Technical Communication in 1988. His master's thesis studied language patterns in small group communication during simulated scientific problem solving.

He began his career as a medical copywriter at Roche Pharmaceuticals in New Jersey, and later joined VICOM/FCB, a medical advertising agency in New York. After moving to Chicago in 1990, Randy worked as a copy . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Hayrynen, Kathy

Kathy L. Hayrynen

'93, '89, '86

Technical Director
Applied Process, Inc.
AP Technologies Division
BS EMY 1986, MS EMY 1989, PhD EMY 1993

Graduated with BS, MS, & PhD in Metallurgical Engineering in 1986, 1989, and 1993, respectively. Presently Technical Director at Applied Process, Inc., in Livonia, Michigan. Applied Process has been a technology leader in the heat treating industry since 1978. AP and its affiliated companies use properly applied Austempering technologies to solve tough engineering problems.

Current member of department’s External Advisory Board and contributes to MY4130 Principles of Metal . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Richard J. Robbins

Richard J. Robbins

'56, '96

Vice Chairman, Board of Directors, Atlas-Copco Robbins, Inc.

Richard J. Robbins graduated from the Michigan College of Mining and Technology (MCM&T) in 1956 with a BS in Mechanical Engineering. Since 1958, Dick has been a major contributor and a prominent influence in the mining and tunneling industry.

In 1958, Dick joined The Robbins Company—established by his father, James S. Robbins, a 1933 MCM&T mining engineering graduate. The Robbins Company has prospered and employs over 330 workers worldwide. The Robbins Co. became part of the . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Allan M. Johnson

Allan M. Johnson

'67, '65

Al Johnson received an Associate Engineering Degree from Muskegon Community College before being drafted into the U.S. Army. While in the army, he became a Master rifleman and won two legs towards a Distinguished Riflemans Badge, the highest honor for a rifleman.

After his honorable discharge, he attended Michigan Tech and graduated with a B.S. in Geological Engineering in 1965, an M.S. in Geological Engineering in 1967, and a Ph.D. in Geology in 1971. Beginning part time as a . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

John Uhrie

Dr. John Uhrie

'91, '96

John Uhrie holds a BS in geological engineering and a PhD in metallurgical engineering from Michigan Tech. He also earned an MS in geology from the University of Wyoming.

After earning his PhD, he joined Phelps Dodge Mining Company (now Freeport McMoRan) in the newly formed Process Technology Center. In that industrial R&D role, he developed new bio heap and tank leaching technologies. Many of these flow sheets are now standard practice throughout the corporation. He has since operated . . .

Alumni Focus More Alumni

Brenda Helminen

'83, '88

After graduating in 1983 with a BS in Computer Science, Brenda Helminen began her career as a programmer with IBM Corporation in Rochester, MN.  She returned to the Copper Country later that year to work for the Department of Computer Science at Michigan Tech.  While working, she completed her Master’s degree in Computer Science in 1988.  She continued her career  with the University as a Senior Systems Programmer in the Center for Experimental Computation followed by a . . .

Student Stories See More

Mark Hopkins

Mark Hopkins

PhD Candidate, Mechanical Engineering (Spring 2014)

Mark Hopkins completed his undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering at Michigan Tech in the summer of 2010. In the fall of 2010, Mark began work on his PhD in the Ion Space Propulsion Lab under Professor Lyon B. King. Mark’s research interest is the development of Hall-effect thrusters operating on magnesium propellant.

Hall thrusters are used for orbit transfer and deep space missions.

Student Stories See More

Mark Hopkins

Mark Hopkins

PhD Candidate, Mechanical Engineering (Spring 2014)

Mark Hopkins completed his undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering at Michigan Tech in the summer of 2010. In the fall of 2010, Mark began work on his PhD in the Ion Space Propulsion Lab under Professor Lyon B. King. Mark’s research interest is the development of Hall-effect thrusters operating on magnesium propellant.

Hall thrusters are used for orbit transfer and deep space missions.

Student Stories See More

Melanie L. Talaga

Melanie L. Talaga

PhD Candidate, Chemistry (Fall 2015)
Hometown: Negaunee, MI

Melanie Talaga received her Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry with a minor in Mathematics from the University of Minnesota Duluth in May of 2011. She is currently working towards her PhD at Michigan Technological University, under the supervision of Dr. Tarun K. Dam. Her doctoral research studies glycobiology, which is an exciting new field at the forefront of biochemistry. Glycobiology deals with the structures, biosynthesis and activities of . . .

Student Stories See More

Jennifer L. Fuller

Jennifer L. Fuller

PhD Candidate, Environmental Engineering

Jennifer L. Fuller is a native of Saginaw, Michigan where she graduated Salutatorian from Hemlock High School in 2007. Self-funded and the first generation in her family to attend college, Jennifer chose to attend an in-state public university with the aid of public and private scholarship. She enrolled at Michigan Technological University in Fall 2007. In her undergraduate career, Jennifer . . .