TechAlum News

April 11, 2005 (Vol. 11, No. 45)

An award-winning weekly electronic newsletter for alumni and friends of Michigan Technological University. Written and distributed by Dean Woodbeck '78, Senior Director of University Communications. For past issues, see our archives.

In this issue:

  • Husky Tales
  • At da Tech
  • Around Town
  • From the E-mailbag
  • E-mail Updates/Welcome to new subscribers
  • Alumni Chapter Events
  • Job Opportunities
  • Electronic Services for Alumni

Husqi Tales

I will go outside and run today, for the first time this year, if you don't count the one time in Florida where I got lost.

I just want to say, for the record, that large retirement communities with houses that look the same and WAY too many cul-de-sacs can play havoc with an absent-minded runner's brain.

As you may recall, my daughter and I went to Florida a couple of weeks ago to visit my mother. She lives in a very large retirement community (hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of houses). Figuring there would still be a few days of cross-country skiing left when we returned home, I wanted to run a couple of times to stay in shape.

I figured I had a pretty good handle on a route, so I set the timer on my watch for 15. I figured I'd run for 15 minutes, then turn around and go back, getting in a nice 30-minute workout (see, we liberal arts majors *can* do math).

Off I went, running along the pre-planned route and not thinking about much. After awhile, I figured 15 minutes must be about up, but my watch read "14:40." I found that strange, because I knew I'd been running for more than 20 seconds. Apparently, I didn't find it strange enough, because I kept going.

The proverbial light bulb flashed over my head, when I stopped again and the watch read "14:38." "Now wait," I thought. "I have just run longer than two seconds."

That's when the light bulb flashed. My watch not only times minutes and seconds, but HOURS, too. "14:40" meant 20 minutes down and 14 hours and 40 minutes to go.

After turning around, I missed my first turn, corrected it a minute later, turned the wrong way on a cul-de-sac, then finally returned to the main road.

Next time, I will tie a two-mile long piece of twine to the mailbox, run until I reach the end of my rope, then follow it back home.

Snow Watch '04-'05

At the risk of suffering the same fate as Denver this past weekend, I'm retiring the Snow Watch for this year. I've been using the weather station at the Keweenaw Research Center this year, which recorded a total of 164.26" of snow.

John Dee, a weather forecaster in Lake Linden, recorded 201" on his back yard snow platform. The Gazette, who uses a man's home weather station in Painesdale, reports 248.5". And, finally, the Keweenaw Road Commission reports 260.7" from its measuring station in Delaware.

Snow reports have traditionally come from the airport, before the FAA went to an automated weather station a couple of years ago and eliminated snowfall reports. Because KRC is at the airport, I've been using their reports. As you can see, there is a huge variation--looks like a nice master's thesis for someone.

ALUMNI BULLETIN BOARD: Remember the alumni bulletin board for you to use for discussions related to this newsletter, Tech sports, or anything else:

At Da Tech

SAE RECEPTION TOMORROW: The ME-EM department is sponsoring an alumni reception at the SAE World Congress Tuesday, April 12, 6-9 pm. The event is co-sponsored by Ford, Visteon, GM, and Kimberly Clark. The location is Room W1-52 Cobo Hall (ground floor).

EXSEL PROGRAM HONORED BY STATE: Michigan Tech's Excelling in Science and Engineering Learning Program (ExSEL) has been recognized by the state's King-Chavez-Parks Initiative as a state Best Practice Model. The program's goal is to improve retention through academic and social support, peer mentoring and referrals to other campus services (

UNDERGRADUATE EXPO APRIL 14: Michigan Tech's annual Undergraduate Expo will take place April 14, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. in the Memorial Union Ballroom. The event provides an opportunity for undergraduate students to showcase their accomplishments in undergraduate research, Enterprise and senior design. This year approximately 70 projects will be displayed, representing the work of more than 700 undergraduate students.

DETROIT STATION LOOKING FOR BASH CAMERA OWNER: WXYZ-TV in Detroit aired a story regarding a camera that was found on a bench at the "Bash at the Big House" football game. In an attempt to identify the owner, the film was developed and reveals pictures of a family with a young military man dressed in a camouflage uniform and pictures of a medium size black and white dog. For more information, contact the station at 248-827-7777.

BASKETBALL NAMES AWARD-WINNERS: The women's basketball team has named Junior Amanda Sieja its most valuable player. The 6-2 center also claimed the squad's leading scorer award after registering 12.4 points per outing. Junior Sarah Magee was named most improved player and Senior Kim Cameron (Presque Isle, Mich.) was the Harold Meese Sportsmanship Award winner.

BUETTNER MEN'S MVP: Senior Josh Buettner received most valuable player honors for the men's basketball team for the second straight year. Sophomore Radayl Richardson was named most improved and junior Bob Evans was named to the Harold Meese Sportsmanship Award.

MIRON BREAKS SCHOOL TRIPLE JUMP RECORD: Jessica Miron's jump of 37' - 0 1/2" set a new triple jump record during the Bulldog Invitational at Ferris State University. She also placed second in the 400 meters.

FOR MORE INFORMATION from Tech, see the weekly newsletter Tech Topics:

Around Town

AIRPORT RECEIVES $1.35 MILLION: The Houghton County Memorial Airport received a $1.35 million check Thursday from the Michigan Department of Transportation for several projects, including runway rehabilitation and wetland mitigation. The project includes widening the main runway and updating guidance signs and navigational aids.

RED CROSS CASE DRAWS TO CLOSE: After nearly three years of legal wrangling, the former Western U.P. Red Cross Chapter executive director, accused of embezzling more than $100,000 from the chapter in 2001-02, pled guilty to three counts of wire fraud and one count of false statement on a loan application.

HIGHWAY NOMINATED FOR DESIGNATION: More than 40 miles of US-41, from the lift bridge to Copper Harbor, has been nominated for National Byway designation. Since 1994, a section of that route, from Delaware to Copper Harbor, has been recognized as the "Copper Country Trail," with designation as a Michigan State Heritage Route. There are now 96 routes designated in the National Byway Program, a division of the U.S. Department of Transportation. Currently, the only route to be designated in Michigan is Woodward Avenue in Detroit.

From the E-mailbag

E-mail from Bruce Faland '81 (brucefaland(at)

I was in Florida last week also and ran into a couple
of locals that mention that they had a snowball fight
in Florida thanks to Michigan Tech sending a box car
of snow to Florida. Does Tech still carry on the
tradition and where did they send it. I kind of recall
this back in 1980.

Dean sez: I know that Blue Key used to sent a cargo of snow
to Southwest Texas State (as John Helge noted here a couple
of weeks ago), but I don't recall any Florida shipments.

E-mail from Marty Vonk (martinvonk(at)

Haven't been back through that way in a while but on
one of the "options" from Tech to Grand Rapids you
went through Amble Michigan. The sign as you entered
the village (crossroads would be more accurate):
"Amble, Reduce Speed." Talked to a State Police friend
of my dad's and found out the sign got stolen

E-mail from Ken Nickel (BIKWNICKEL(at)

This will probably open a can of worms.

BUT, and this was in my memory, not in a book.

Road Signs

If these signs
are jumpy and blurry
it means
your are going
in too much of a hurry.

TechAlum Subscriber Stats

We're at 7,163 subscribers.

Here are the new e-mail addresses from the past week. Please note, we are
using the word "at" instead of the at sign to guard against spambots.

1969 Michael Priest mlpriest(at)
1976 Robert Gingerich bgingerich(at)
1979 Vicki Betts (Mills) vlbetts(at)
1980 Richard Solosky rmsolosky(at)
1983 Mark Peterson mcdsapet(at)
1989 Dave Hockin davmelaub(at)
1995 Robert Riedel riedel(at)
1996 Robert McKnight kia2(at)
1996 Laura Reed lareed(at)
1999 Ross Hubbard hubbs76(at)

You can update your information at:

Alumni Association Programs

CHAPTER EVENTS: For more information on alumni chapter events,
e-mail mtu_alumni at or see the alumni chapter site on the web.

13 Keweenaw Chapter Senior Design Expo Reception
14 West Michigan Chapter Spring Dinner

3 Chicago Michigan Tech Spotlight Night
4 Grand Rapids Michigan Tech Spotlight Night
9 Minneapolis Michigan Tech Spotlight Night
11 Detroit Michigan Tech Spotlight Night
18 Keweenaw Chapter Back to School Tour Opie Library
and Rekhi Hall. Wine and cheese reception
25 Green Bay Chapter 26th Annual Golf Outing

4 West Michigan Chapter Annual Golf Outing
7 LA Alumni Event
11 Detroit Chapter 2005 Golf Outing

15 Mid-Michigan (Saginaw, Midland, Bay City) Annual
Golf Outing

ALPHA DELTA ALPHA PLANS 25-YEAR REUNION: Alpha Delta Alpha sorority will celebrate its 25-year reunion this summer during the Tech alumni reunion. The event will take place the weekend of August 5-7. For information contact Kim Klender at ksklende(at) or visit the ADA alumni website at

ALPHA SIGMA TAU plans 25th REUNION: Alpha Sigma Tau's 25th Reunion will be held over Labor Day weekend, September 2-5, 2005. Details will be sent over the alumnae email list. Please contact Emily Callow at elcallow(at) with any questions.

ALPHA XI ZETA PLANS 20TH REUNION: Alpha Xi Zeta is planning its 20-year reunion Labor Day Weekend, September 2-4, 2005. For more information, contact Shannan Fisher at snfisher(at)"

DELTA PHI EPSILON REUNION: Delta Phi Epsilon's 20th reunion date is Sept 2-5, 2005. Please contact Tamsen Bissell (tamsenbissell(at) or Natasha Bruggeman -- reunion chair (nkbrugge(at) for more information.

DELTA UPSILON REUNION MAY 14: I am setting up a 25th Anniversary for the Delta Upsilon International Fraternity/ Alpha Delta Upsilon Colonization on May 14, 2005 in Houghton. For more information visit or email Adam Mitteer (aamittee(at)

DELTA ZETA PLANS 30-YEAR REUNION: The Delta Zeta sorority will celebrate its 30-year reunion this summer during the Tech alumni reunion. The event will take place the weekend of August 5-7. For information contact Heidi Mueller at hmuelle6(at) or Ellie Mulcahy at eamulcahy(at)

LAMBDA CHI ALPHA REUNION: The Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity is planning their 25th reunion during reunion weekend, August 5th through August 7th. For information, contact Carl Craven at carl_1955(at)

PHI LAMBDA BETA REUNION: Phi Lambda Beta Sorority, which was active on campus from 1958 thru 1978, is planning a reunion in Houghton, August 2 thru August 4, 2005. After a year of searching and correspondence, many sisters are planning to be in Houghton for this event. Phi Lambda Beta later became Alpha Gamma Delta. There are many sisters who remain on our "lost" list, and we would like very much to contact as many as possible. Any information: please contact: Diane Henderson Smith-Messner at dianemessner(at)

SIGMA PHI EPSILON PLANS 40TH: Sigma Phi Epsilon will celebrate its 40th anniversary during the Michigan Tech alumni reunion weekend this summer, August 5-7.

THETA CHI EPSILON PLANS 65TH: Theta Chi Epsilon Sorority will hold its reunion during summer 2005, July 28th thru 31st. It is not too late to register! For information or registration forms contact Jillian Rothe at jjrothe(at) or Michelle Colling at mcolling(at)

Job Opportunities This Week

ON CAMPUS: Complete job descriptions for these positions are available by e-mailing jobs at

  • Outreach Coordinator--Dean's Office, College of  Engineering

OFF CAMPUS: For off-campus positions, visit the alumni section of the career center's web site (