May 4, 2009
Vol. 15, No. 18
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Moonlight Mile

Yours truly (center) exiting Commencement and the realization has sunk in.

The long road to graduation has finally ended for me. Beginning in 2001, I started taking classes for the PhD in Rhetoric and Technical Communication.

So much has happened since then. My children have graduated from high school and college and continue to attend Tech and elsewhere.

My second class session was cancelled on 9/11/2001. We've witnessed war and peace and economic and energy crises.

We've experienced family struggles and triumphs and a new generation being born.

And through it all, I've been carried by the good wishes and prayers of family and friends from all over the country.

Surrounded by many of them, I took a moment to say, "thanks" for all they've meant to me, including those who live on in our memories and hearts.

I couldn't have done it without them.

And the best accolades came in three words: "Nice job, Dad."

Dennis '92, '09 (It's got a nice ring to it.)
P. S. Why "Moonlight Mile?" All those nights burning through a mile of paper.


No More Snowfall Totals. That's it. Time for golfing.

Snowfall Totals over the Years

At Tech

Spring Commencement Held Saturday

Lt. Col. Otha Thornton, a presidential communications officer, was the featured speaker at Michigan Tech’s Spring Commencement, set for Saturday, May 2. The University honored the accomplishments of 785 students receiving undergraduate degrees, 81 master’s degree candidates and 31 PhD recipients. More

Governor Appoints Two Michigan Tech Deans to Wind Council

Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm has appointed two Michigan Tech deans to the Great Lakes Wind Council. They are Margaret Gale, dean of Michigan Tech's School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science, and Leonard Bohmann, associate dean of academic affairs in the College of Engineering. More

Three Graduate Engineering Programs Rank in Top 50

Graduate school rankings released today by US News & World Report rank three of Michigan Tech’s graduate engineering programs in the top 50 nationwide. The annual rankings evaluated 198 graduate schools of engineering.

Michigan Tech's programs ranked as follows:
• Environmental engineering - 33
• Mechanical engineering - 48
• Materials science and engineering - 49


Michigan Tech Shares National Conservation Award

Michigan Tech has received a Two Chiefs Partnership Award from the US Forest Service and the US Department of Agriculture Nature Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), for Project BURN-UP (Biomass Utilization and Restoration Network for the Upper Peninsula). The Two Chiefs awards recognize outstanding partnerships among conservation districts, state foresters, the Forest Service and NRCS. BURN-UP was one of four recipients of Two Chiefs awards nationwide. More

NSF Awards $4 Million to Michigan Tech to Build Earth Science Teaching Model in Grand Rapids

Some of the most pressing problems facing the world today--climate change, earthquakes and volcanoes, energy and water resources--fall in a field of science most Americans haven’t studied since their middle school earth science class. So Michigan Tech is partnering with the Grand Rapids (Mich.) Public Schools and other groups in Michigan, Washington, D.C. and Colorado to help students learn more about the earth. More

CN Donates $250,000 to Michigan Tech's Rail Transportation Program


CN, one of the largest railroads in North America, today announced it has donated $250,000 to Michigan Tech's Rail Transportation Program to create the CN Rail Transportation Education Center (CN RTEC). More

Alumni Around the World

Nearly 900 New Alumni!

Mark Mitchell

Dr. Mark Mitchell '77 address the new alumni at the end of Spring Commencement 2009.

In his welcome to the 897 newest Michigan Tech alumni, Alumni Association president Dr. Mark Mitchell ’77 encouraged the graduates to stay connected to each other and Michigan Tech.

Mitchell reminded graduates that they will find fellow Huskies in all fifty states and in over one hundred countries of the world who have a bond of shared experience unlike that of many other schools.

He concluded his welcome with, "So, you, the next generation of Michigan Tech alumni, are charged with helping to fix things. You are the new stewards of our science, our technology, our economy, our government, and our peace. Open your awareness to the problems of the world. Realize that you have the vision and the knowledge to make things better. Use your education and your skills to create the future."

Input Sought for Energy Blueprint

Dear Alumni:
Your input is essential in charting Michigan Tech's energy future. The University's Energy Advisory Group is currently developing an Energy Blueprint that will guide the University for the next ten to thirty years. I am requesting that you participate in this process by responding to an energy survey that is anonymous and takes 10-20 minutes to complete.

This link will take you to the survey:

I appreciate your willingness to assist the University in planning the future direction of energy and sustainability on campus

Glenn Mroz

Alums Needed for High School Presentations

The Admissions Offices needs your help! They need alumni to represent Michigan Tech at high school awards presentations.

The website is

Volunteers can visit this website to view schools who have requested a volunteer to assist at an upcoming award ceremony. Kathy Ross is the contact in admissions: or 1-888-688-1885.

Alum Issues Challenge!

A Michigan Tech alumnus has pledged $50,000 in Annual Fund support this fiscal year if we can attract an additional 2,000 Annual Fund gifts by June 30, 2009. Be assured, your gift matters and makes a difference in many ways. Please help us take a step closer to receiving this generous challenge gift which will benefit both current and future Michigan Tech students!

To make your gift to the Annual Fund,

Toll-free 1-877-386-3688

Michigan Tech Fund
1400 Townsend Drive
Houghton, MI 49931-1295

Fill in the Blanks

1970 Computer
Another great old computer, this one donated by Chevron to the EE department in 1970. From left to right, Henry D'Angelo EE department chair, W. R. Bloomfield and David Dzierwa '63 of Chevron, and Richard Born, the EE professor who was put in charge of the machine. Anyone remember crunching numbers with this? Email me.

Fill in the Blanks II: Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra/Concert Choir

KSO/Concert Choir
In honor of Milt Olsson's retirement, this is the KSO and Concert Choir from 2005. The photo is clickable to help you find yourself or someone you know. Email me.
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Tech Sports

Men's Tennis Headed to First NCAA Tournament!

The Michigan Tech men’s tennis team is headed to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history. The NCAA has announced its pairings for the 2009 Men’s Tennis Championship, and the Huskies, who finished fifth in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and posted a 9-9 overall record, will face top-seeded Northwood (17-1) in the opening round. More

Gilkerson Breaks School Record in 800

Michigan Tech junior Ken Gilkerson remained undefeated in the 800-meter run after winning the race in a school-record time of 1:52.50 at the Macalester Twilight Wednesday (April 22). The previous record of 1:54.4 was set by Pat Lencioni in 1987. Gilkerson has ran six of the ten fastest times in the event in school history. More

Women's Track and Field Sets Season Best at Hamline

Michigan Tech senior Lauren Wiza was the top finisher for the Huskies at the Hamline Twilight Wednesday (April 22) finishing second to a runner from the University of Minnesota in the 3,000-meter steeplechase in 12:18.26. Her time was the sixth fastest in school history. Wiza also finished seventh in the javelin with a throw of 92-0. More

Around the Keweenaw

Holiday Inn Express Files for Reorganization

The Holiday Inn Express in Houghton, owned by Oliver Companies of Duluth, Minn., is continuing its battle for financial survival. The struggle was scheduled to lead to a foreclosure sale at 11 a.m. today. However, after countless efforts to renegotiate the mortgage payments, Oliver Companies decided the best move was to file for Chapter 11 reorganization. More

Smurfit Extends Layoffs

Smurfit-Stone Container Corporation has extended the temporary shutdown at its mill. "The market-related down time at the Ontonagon mill has been extended through the end of May," said Mike Mullin, Smurfit director of media relations and public affairs. The layoffs began in November and impact approximately 140 employees. Some mill employees have remained on the job to tend to the facility. More

Angle Parking in Downtown Houghton

The Houghton City Council approved changes to parking on Shelden Avenue Monday in advance of the streetscape project beginning next week, including the introduction of free one-hour parking. During construction, traffic on Shelden Avenue will be reduced to one lane; the north side of Shelden will be converted to angled parking. The south side will also have deliveries from 7 a.m. to noon, then be available for customer parking from noon until 2 a.m. More

From the Email Bag

More on Broomball

Late response, but IRHC Broomball as we know it today started in the late 1980s. We don't know much about other origins.

Dustin Sommer

Dustin: We've traced the roots of broomball back to the late 1960s. IRHC got involved later on, it looks like.

ME-EM at Chrysler

wind turbine

Pictured, left to right, Michigan Tech's Bill Predebon, ME-EM department chair, Adam Johnson, office of development, and Brian Johnson of Chrysler, ME-EM '81, tour Chrysler's acoustic wind tunnel in the Auburn Hills Tech Center as part of development meetings and SAE World Congress activities the week of April 19th 2009. Chrysler is a Corporate Partner with Michigan Tech.

Yooper with Tech Bag in Dominican Republic

Thought you'd enjoy this story. My wife just got back from a month-long stint on the Navy's hospital ship USNS COMFORT (T-AH20), where she helped with a humanitarian mission in Haiti and the Dominican Republic. One day while on the ship, she ran into a man carrying a Michigan Tech
backpack (or book bag - I can't remember which). She couldn't help stopping him and asking if he "went there" (i.e. MTU). He responded he was FROM there. She asked if that meant he was a yooper - to which he just laughed. Unfortunately, she doesn't remember his name, but I thought it was a wonderful example of what a small world it is and how Michigan Tech's name can be seen just about anywhere.

Incidentally, anyone who wants to see lots of photos and read more about the COMFORT's mission can check it out at the following website:

Jim Russell
BSME, '84

Alum Refs at Frozen Four

Matt [Ulwelling] actually did the national championship....


Jim Carroll

The End of Hubbell Hall

hubbell hall


I was standing on the Memorial Union lawn that sunny summer day in 1966 or maybe '67 when the Hubbell Hall tower came crashing down. It felt like an earthquake. Somewhere I have some photos of that event. Maybe a Lode staffer was on the scene to record that sad day. Now I have a laser wood carving to remind me of my struggles with Diffequ, my toughest math class....

Marty Oldford '64

Marty: Here's a link to an interview with former president Ray Smith regarding Hubbell Hall (and more).

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As a Michigan Tech alum, you receive a free membership (a $19.95 per month saving!) to join GPS by using VIP code 1017-1 , Go to and become a member today!


More Alumni Benefits & Services information

Class Rings
Diploma Frames
License Plates
University Images Michigan Tech Clothing and Giftware

Job Opportunities

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