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

Heather Richards

Heather Richards

Master of Business Administration (2010)

“The Michigan Tech MBA has been an incredible learning experience. This program has helped my communication, presentation, and analytical skills to prepare me for future positions. Michigan Tech’s MBA program has given me the tools to build my own road to success.”

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Stephanie Groves

Stephanie Groves

PhD Candidate, Biological Sciences (Fall 2012)

Stephanie Groves received a BS degree in biological sciences in 2006 and a MS in biological sciences in 2009. She is currently working on a PhD. Her research goal is the optimization of ethanol production by yeast from lignocellulosic biomass. Her project focuses on increasing ethanol yields through adaptation of yeast to lignocellulosic feedstocks and identifying targets for metabolic engineering.

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Maria Janowiak

Maria Janowiak

MS, Forest Ecology and Management (2007)
Scientist, Climate Change Adaptation and Carbon Management, Northern Institute of Applied Climate Science

“The research that I did as part of my master’s was fun and exciting, and I was fortunate to spend a lot of time in the forests of Upper Michigan. I learned a lot from the faculty whom I worked with, and I continue to collaborate with several of them in my current job. While studying for my master’s, I also developed skills that I use every day as part of my job, including writing, presenting, and working with a variety of collaborators.”

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Stephanie Groves

Stephanie Groves

PhD Candidate, Biological Sciences (Fall 2012)

Stephanie Groves received a BS degree in biological sciences in 2006 and a MS in biological sciences in 2009. She is currently working on a PhD. Her research goal is the optimization of ethanol production by yeast from lignocellulosic biomass. Her project focuses on increasing ethanol yields through adaptation of yeast to lignocellulosic feedstocks and identifying targets for metabolic engineering.

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 . . .

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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 . . .

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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 . . .

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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, . . .

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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 . . .

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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 . . .

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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 . . .

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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 . . .

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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 . . .

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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 . . .

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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 . . .

Student Stories See More

Andrew Drees

Andrew Drees

PhD Candidate, Electrical Engineering (Spring 2014)

Andrew Drees received a BS degree in electrical engineering with a minor in historical studies in 2009 and a MS degree in electrical engineering in 2011 from Michigan Tech. He is currently working toward a PhD at Michigan Tech advised by Dr. Chee-Wooi Ten and Dr. Bruce Mork.

His main research area is distribution system applications of the smart grid. The smart grid is a next generation power system that installs intelligent real-time monitoring and control capabilities throughout the power system infrastructure. Andrew’s research focuses on creating solutions to challenges such as how to secure the vast increase in power system information that is now available.

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Michael Premer

Michael Premer

PhD Candidate, Forest Science (Fall 2014)
Hometown: Shelby, MI

Michael Premer received a B.A. degree in Environmental Studies from Northeastern Illinois University in 2009 and a Master of Forestry from Michigan Technological University in 2011. He is currently working towards a PhD at Michigan Technological University in Forest Science, co-advised by Dr. Robert Froese and Dr. Linda Nagel. His overall research goal is to assess forest ecosystem response to increased biomass utilization destined for biofuel production, in addition to the removal of merchantable timber products. This study seeks to evaluate the viability of woody biomass as an alternative feed stock while maximizing forest carbon sequestration potential and long-term forest productivity. This project is funded by the National Council for Air and Stream Improvement and Plum Creek Timber Company.

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Michael Premer

Michael Premer

PhD Candidate, Forest Science (Fall 2014)
Hometown: Shelby, MI

Michael Premer received a B.A. degree in Environmental Studies from Northeastern Illinois University in 2009 and a Master of Forestry from Michigan Technological University in 2011. He is currently working towards a PhD at Michigan Technological University in Forest Science, co-advised by Dr. Robert Froese and Dr. Linda Nagel. His overall research goal is to assess forest ecosystem response to increased biomass utilization destined for biofuel production, in addition to the removal of merchantable timber products. This study seeks to evaluate the viability of woody biomass as an alternative feed stock while maximizing forest carbon sequestration potential and long-term forest productivity. This project is funded by the National Council for Air and Stream Improvement and Plum Creek Timber Company.

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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 . . .