Michigan Tech Graduates Bolster Michigan's Workforce

By Jennifer Donovan | Published

At its regular meeting today, Michigan Technological University's Board of Trustees recognized the accomplishments of more than 1,000 graduates who will participate in Commencement ceremonies on Saturday, May 3, 2008. The Board was impressed to learn that most of them already have jobs in their fields.

"A job placement rate topping 96 percent, which Michigan Tech achieved last year, demonstrates how highly employers value our graduates and their potential impact on Michigan's economy," said Board Chair Kathryn Clark. "High tech is our future, and Michigan Tech graduates a higher percentage of students with high tech degrees than any other university in the state."

Each year more companies recruit Michigan Tech students. Two job fairs during the 2007-2008 academic year attracted 486 employers, most of whom conducted job interviews with Michigan Tech students. Nearly 37 percent of the jobs filled last year were in Michigan.

Employers like Michigan Tech graduates because they receive a practical, hands-on education and display a strong work ethic.

"We've been extremely impressed with Michigan Tech students," said Terry Williams, manager of GE Aviation's new University Development Center in Houghton. "We're always impressed and surprised by how much they can do. And by the time they graduate, they are prepared to hit the ground running. That makes them very valuable, to employers and to the future of our economy."

In other business, the Board
* Approved faculty appointments, tenure and promotions, including
- Promotion from associate professor with tenure to professor with tenure: Chandrashekhar Joshi, School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science; Gerard Caneba, Chemical Engineering; Noel Urban, Civil and Environmental Engineering; Nancy Grimm, Humanities; Shuanglin Zhang, Mathematical Sciences; and Raymond Shaw, Physics.
- Promotion from associate professor without tenure to professor with tenure: Brian Fick, Physics.
- Promotion from associate professor without tenure to associate professor with tenure: Jeffrey Naber, Mechanical Engineering�Engineering Mechanics.
- Promotion from assistant professor without tenure to associate professor with tenure: Victor Busov and Christopher Webster, School of Forest Resources and Environmental Sciences; Chunxiao (Tricia) Chigan and Jindong Tan, Electrical and Computer Engineering; Jason Blough, Mechanical Engineering�Engineering Mechanics; Haiying Liu, Chemistry; William Helton and Hungwe Kedmon, Cognitive and Learning Sciences; M. Ann Brady, Humanities; Ranjit Pati, Physics; Timothy Scarlett, Social Sciences; and Christopher Plummer, Visual and Performing Arts.

* Approved awarding an honorary posthumous Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering to Jonathan M. DeCleene, a senior who died in September 2007.

* Heard a preliminary report from Les Cook, vice president for student affairs, on plans for building additional student housing to accommodate a growing student body.

* Authorized the hiring of Rehmann Robson to conduct annual audits of the University's financial statements, federal student financial assistance programs and intercollegiate athletics programs, and to prepare materials for the State of Michigan's comprehensive annual financial report.

* Heard reports from Les Cook, vice president for student affairs; Martha Sloan, president of the University Senate; Shahrzad Rizvi, president of the Undergraduate Student Government (USG); and Emily McCarthy, president of the Graduate Student Council (GSC), focusing on Goal 2 of Michigan Tech's Strategic Plan, which is to deliver a distinctive and rigorous discovery-based learning experience grounded in science, engineering, technology, sustainability and the business of innovation.

The USG recommended that the Board incorporate a $64 "Experience Tech" student activities fee into the University's 2008-2009 budget. The fee would cover unlimited access to Huskies hockey, the Gates Tennis Center, Mont Ripley and the Portage Lake Golf Course, as well as intramural sports and fine arts. The GSC informed the Board that its members had voted by a small margin against the fee.

Michigan Technological University is a public research university, home to more than 7,000 students from 60 countries. Founded in 1885, the University offers more than 120 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in science and technology, engineering, forestry, business and economics, health professions, humanities, mathematics, and social sciences. Our campus in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula overlooks the Keweenaw Waterway and is just a few miles from Lake Superior.