TechAlum News

July 25, 2005 (Vol. 12, No. 9)

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

The orange barrels came out in Hancock last week and contractors repaved the entire length of the main drag, Quincy Street. You civil engineers, and all aficionados of large construction machines, would have brought lawn chairs and popcorn. That huge pavement eating machine, the large trucks with steaming asphalt, the rollers that can do an entire lane at once...a feel a testosterone overdose coming on. Does it get any better than that?

There were a couple of amazing things. First, the whole process only took three days--and the contractors worked only at night. Second, the very day the project was complete, the city had already dug up a large square portion of the street in front of the WMPL studios. I guess that's job security for those at the local Payne and Dolan asphalt plant on Lake Annie Road.

Speaking of construction, the year-and-a-half renovation of Wadsworth Hall is scheduled to come to an end in August. Contractors are putting the final touches on rooms in East Wads, as well as to the suites (also on the east end of the hall). Since January 2004, the phased renovation has meant relocating residents, doing the construction, and continuing to operate. It has been quite a juggling act for students, workers, and staff.

The project has reconfigured the rooms and hallways, providing a number of kitchens and study areas on each floor, as well as upgrading electrical and data networks and plumbing. New "loftable" furniture has also been added to each room.

And finally, the alumni reunion is fast approaching. It kicks off on August 4 with the traditional pasty picnic. For information, and links to the schedule and our alumni bulletin board, go to

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

TECH ARCHEOLOGIST DIGS POTTERY: Tim Scarlett, assistant professor of archeology at Michigan Tech, is looking for pottery left behind by pioneer craftsmen in Salt Lake City. He's doing so by excavating a back yard. The homeowner was planning an expansion, but wanted to be sure the work would not damage any relics. For links to stories, and his web site, go here.

LINEMAN RECEIVES GLIAC HONORS: Michigan Tech football player Joe Berge has been recognized as the 2004-05 GLIAC Men's Scholar-Athlete of the Year. Berger, who has signed with the Carolina Panthers of the National Football League, graduated from Michigan Tech last December with a 3.80 grade point average in mechanical engineering. More:

Around Town

BREAKERS PARK GETS MAKE-OVER: The beach area across the Portage waterway from McLain State Park and the old Coast Guard Station will soon be free of stamp sand. The area, generally know to Tech students as "the breakers," was part of a $15.2 million Superfund clean-up. The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to reopen the area to public use in October, after covering the stamp sand with soil and vegetation.

IRISHMAN ROWING SUPERIOR: Ian Harvey, a competitive rower from St. Field, Northern Ireland, is oaring from Duluth to Sault Ste. Marie. The 58-year-old is raising money for a charity that builds schools in Uganda. He is being supported by a crew of nine people who are riding on a tug boat from Duluth.

LIBRARY BREAKS GROUND: The City of Houghton broke ground last week on a new building for the Portage Lake District Library. The site is the former location of the Gundlach Construction warehouse, just below the Library Bar and Restaurant on the Houghton waterfront.

CALUMET ADDS VENTILATION: Two new fans, each with a 10,000 cubic-foot-per-minute capacity, will help cool patrons of the Calumet Theater. The theater board added the air exchange system to increase the comfort level of summer patrons. The fans are part of a project to restore the theatre's original airflow configuration. Originally, inside air was vented out through the roof by convection and replaced by fresh air via vents in the auditorium floor and the front of the stage.

NEW ARMORY OPENS: Officials opened the new Calumet National Guard Armory last week, dedicating a 27,000 square-foot building north of the village. The old building, which includes an ice rink, will remain open for use as an ice arena and other community events.

From the E-mailbag

E-mail from Jim Mitchell (jmitchell(at)

Dean, great news about David House's magnificent gift.
Great alumni help to make a great University. Also,
thanks for the nice article about your afternoon at
Bete Gris (the gray bear, I believe). It is truly one
of the most magnificent spots on earth. There is
nothing more peaceful than a sunny summer or early
fall afternoon at Bete Gris. I have been swimming in
the channel there as late as October 1.

E-mail from Jeff Jost '04 (Jost_Jeffrey_W(at)

Dean, I thought you'd enjoy this CNN story about UP

Dean sez: I've used a URL shortener--so this really is the
CNN article:

E-mail from Wayne Vandenbergh (vandenberghww(at)


Long time reader, first time emailer.

In July of 2001 we were also a Nielsen family, the 2
of us and a 2 year old. Not big into TV, each day had
the following: Monday: Tour de France, Zaboomafoo;
Tuesday: Tour de France, Teletubbies; Wednesday: Tour
de France, Barney; etc. I think they just tossed our
survey out as incomplete, or at least, too far off the
curve to be relevant.

Thanks for the news.

E-mail from Dennis Hayner (dhayner2(at)

Hi Dean,

I'm not a bicyclist, but share your enthusiasm for the
Tour de France. The last two days (stages 14 & 15), in
particular, have been great competition. I watch the
last 2 1/2 hours or so of it live on OLN every day. To
see the whole thing live on the Pacific coast means
starting at 5:30 a.m. or earlier. I'm retired now, and
don't have to get up early for anything. I did email
OLN to tell them that I like the coverage very much,
and not to change a thing.

I remember, as does Jim Pruner (hello, fellow '61
grad), the Bosch brewery west on the canal road. You
could get a bottle out there if you stopped in for a
visit. Bosch sort of had to grow on you - after a year
or so, it really tasted pretty good, and it certainly
was cheap. You could get a bottle in small bars for a

I really appreciate the TechAlum News each week - keep
up the good work.

E-mail from Don Scott (donscott33(at)

Dean- Please convey my thanks and best wishes to the
gentleman who is going to restore the Scott Hotel. One
of the major disappoints in my life was my return to
the Copper Country and find an Ace Hardware in the

As I remember, the hotel was built in the form of a
hollow square and it was on a hillside so there were
two street levels. One was the lounge and restaurant
and the other which abutted the parking lot was the
lobby and some meeting rooms and suites. I dimly
recall a physician setting up in one of the lobby
suites for a time.

The company policy was to always put guests in the
outward facing rooms as we charged more for those.
When they were all full, then we put folks facing the
inside. North Central Airlines put up their pilots and
stews there when they had a turn around, but only in
the inside rooms. I have written before about my year
of employment at the Scott so I don't need to
reiterate. Suffice it to say, I am not related to the
folks who owned it. That was three guys from
Minneapolis in 1953!

Keep up the good work and, God willing, I will be
there next year for the 50th!

E-mail from Marty Oldford (MSOldford(at)


Save that tape of stage 15. It was great seeing the
domestique Hincapie winning one for the Discovery
team. Looking forward to next time trial and Lance
coming into Paris on Sunday even if I have to get up
early on the west coast. Did the lift bridge overheat
too? Remember, winter is not that far off. GO

E-mail from Pat Kolka (pat(at)


My mom was raised in Laurium MI and she told us that
the Italian Hall disaster accrued because the doors
opened inward. When the crowd started to push against
the doors of course they would not open. The people at
the doors could pull them open and some were crushed
and others suffocated. Because of this tragedy all
doors in public building now open outward.

E-mail from Bob Waldron (bob(at)

Hi Dean,

The purpose of this email is to make you aware of a
unique opportunity for small businesses in our region
of the country. On September 14, a Business
Matchmaking regional event is being held in Milwaukee.
This event brings together small business owners and
representatives with procurement agents of large
companies and federal, state and local government
agencies. An informational/prep session related to the
Matchmaking program is being held in Green Bay on July
28 from 8 to noon. Tentative dates for others are July
27 in Oshkosh and July 28 in Appleton, dependent on
SBA, WPI or other speakers being available to do a
presentation regarding the Matchmaking event. For more
information, see

TechAlum Subscriber Stats

We're at 7,105 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.

1968 Gary Lankfer LANKFER(at)GMAIL.COM
1968 Robert Sleeman rsleeman(at)
1969 David Schmidt DaveS65(at)
1970 Robert Baker rjbakeratx(at)
1975 John Hall kaffine8(at)
1977 Paul McCool pmccool(at)
1979 Lorraine Petersen lorblueridge(at)
1982 John Beardslee jbeardslee(at)
1983 Timothy Rollman timr(at)
1996 Lars Taavola ltaavola(at)
1997 Steven Horenziak shorenziak(at)
2002 Matthew Decur mdecur(at)
2003 Bridget Cannon bridget.cannon(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.


30 West Michigan Chapter at Whitecaps baseball

4-6 2005 Alumni Reunion in Houghton.

GREEK REUNION INFORMATION has been moved to the web. For the link, go here:

Job Opportunities This Week

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

  • no new postings

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

One special note, Pettibone in Baraga is searching for a new president. For details, contact Chris Dillman at Korn/Ferry in Chicago (chris.dillman(at)