February 14, 2011
Vol. 17, No. 13
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Carnival Wrap-up

sig eps
Sig Eps' Little Train That Could, with the 800 pound wheel on the locomotive.

At 9:00 a.m. Thursday, Jim Matese of Sigma Phi Epsilon was blowing snow off his statue’s letters. He didn’t have a lot of wind left.

“The guys were all motivated,” he said about the all-nighter they endured. “We had high hopes to get it all done, and the guys fulfilled our wishes.”

He, one of the few stragglers still upright from the month-long fraternity division, was operating on many sleepless hours of intense engineering.

He looked done, but so did the statue, a beautiful affair based on The Little Train That Could children’s book, keeping in synch with this year’s theme: “Thousands of Pages Unfold in the Bitter Cold.”

As for engineering, the clear ice wheel of the locomotive weighed 800 pounds and had to be moved down the hill from their fraternity house to the statue site.

“We had about 12 guys lifting it onto a pickup truck,” Matese said. “Then we were worrying about breaking it on the way down here. All that work for nothing.”

All during a bitter all-nighter: wind chills neared unbearable when single digit temps combined with a good northwester.

The Phi Kappa Tau statue devoted to the Chronicles of Narnia took first in the fraternity division, followed by Delta Sigma Phi, Tau Kappa Epsilon, and the Mateses’s Sig Eps.

The TKE’s Jurassic Park-inspired statue featured a gigantic T. Rex menacing passers-by on U.S. 41.

“It’s only held up by three supports,” said fourth-year mechanical engineering technology major Jacob Nowak, noting the giant head looped back to the ground. He had been there since 6:00 p.m. Wednesday.



We had a chance to talk with the Alumni Association Board during Carnival, and it was great. We discussed TechAlum past, present, and future, and some social media opportunities for us and the alums.

It is always great to put faces with names I know: new Association President Paul Ninefeldt '96, VP Sally Heidtke '81, Bob Wojcik '91, Ed Eiswerth '77, and Jeffrey J. Zeman '97.

I hope all of you get a chance to get back to campus, for Carnival or any other reason. We'd love to see you here!

Dennis '92, '09


Snowfall Totals—

Total to date (at the airport): 138.5"
On the Ground: 39"

Last year's total: 144"
On the ground: 36"

At Tech

2011 Winter Carnival Snow Statue Winners

phi tau
The iconic image of Winter Carnival is the snow statues. They are a long, arduous labor or a frenetic overnight scramble. They define the pageantry of this annual ritual, which is getting on towards a hundred years old now. As usual, this year scores of statues were built. Some are modest; some are immense. Some are plain; some are magnificent. All of them reach beyond campus, for they are the foundation of a community event that is fashioned by the stalwart students of Michigan Tech. More

Snow Statue Building: An Insider

Jillian Schwab—a second-year undergraduate, a student intern in University Marketing and Communications and a resident of West McNair Hall—shares an insider’s view of snow statue building. Her team’s statue placed first in the residence halls month-long category. More

Judges Sort Through "A Marvel"

The handiwork of snow builders--competent and artful--was completed Thursday at this annual spectacle we call Winter Carnival. These snow builders, weaned on icicles and girded for frost, conduct a labor for a month or a night. Both are fit only for rambunctious youth. It's a bracing experience they'll never forget with their cold feet, cold fingers, and delicate eye for detail. The sun will undo their work. In the meantime, it's statuesque, and judges had to separate the spectacular from the merely great. More

Frequent, Severe Fires Turn Alaskan Forests into a Carbon Production Line

Alaskan forests used to be important players in Mother Nature’s game plan for regulating carbon dioxide levels in the air. It’s elementary earth science: Trees take up carbon dioxide and give off oxygen. More

Alumni Around the World

Michigan Tech Alumni Events in Northwest and Alaska

Glenn Mroz
Tech fans intently watching their Huskies battle the UAA Seawolves.

Michigan Tech President Glenn Mroz ‘74/77 and his wife Gail Mroz ’86 were on the road again visiting alumni and friends at Pub Nights in Seattle and Portland and a Pasty Dinner followed by a Husky Hockey game in Anchorage.

More than 90 alumni and friends gathered at the historic Pikes Brewery in Seattle and over 50 got together and shared their Tech memories in Portland.

Alumni from as far away as Juneau travelled to Anchorage to enjoy a Pasty Dinner featuring pasties ‘imported’ from Calumet! After catching up on what’s happening at Tech with President Mroz, the group cheered on their Hockey Huskies as they took on the UAA Seawolves.

Many thanks to volunteers Stephanie Garbacik ’10, Leanne Kozicki '01, Bill Savela '70, Nate Schiavo '02 and Vicki Chekan ‘90 for their help in organizing these events. Once again a special thank you to our Assistant Director of Corporate Development Adam Johnson ’98 who hosted the Washington and Oregon events.


Do you want to have an event in your city? Contact your Chapter Leader by visiting http://alumni.mtu.edu/chapters or email the Alumni Relations Office at alumni@mtu.edu.

Calling all former Blizzard T. Huskies

We would like to invite all alumni who were part of the Blizzard T. Husky mascot team over the years to Alumni Reunion August 4-6, 2011. Unfortunately, due to the secrecy surrounding Blizzard's identity, we don’t know who you are!

Please contact Alumni Relations—alumni@mtu.edu or 1-877-688-2586—and let us know you would like to be on the invite list.

BTW, although the dog mascot was revived in 1970 by Kathy (Fiori) ’71 and Bill ’71 Wassberg, it was not until 1997, that was it was named Blizzard T. Husky.

SYP Kicks Off 2011 Offerings; Alumni Discounts

Youth Programs Opens Summer Enrollment and Announces 2011 Offerings!

Michigan Tech’s Youth Programs is rolling out its most exciting line-up of precollege programming yet, led by suggestions from our past participants and their parents.

Our 2011 new Summer Youth Programs Explorations include

  • Engineering the Human Body
  • Creating 3-D Models for Virtual Reality
  • Designing the Future—Mechanical Engineering,
  • Trees, Tracks, and Trails
  • Backpacking the Porcupine Mountains
  • Becoming Bill Gates

Also exciting are

  • our 3rd year of the National Summer Transportation Institute
  • and the 2nd year of Rail and Intermodal Transportation, both with very exciting field trips
  • Blacksmithing
  • the Pavlis Leadership Institute
  • Mobile Robotics
  • Mountaineering EcoChallenge

We have also rolled out a new website (www.youthprograms.mtu.edu). Check it out!

Michigan Tech’s Youth Programs has been exciting young men and women about learning since 1972. As loyal Michigan Tech Alumni, you will be first to receive our new innovative catalog in February! We encourage you to visit our website for more information regarding our programs.
Also, if you would like to make sure you are on our mailing list, or if you have any questions regarding our programs, please feel free to contact us by e-mail (yp@mtu.edu) or by calling our staff at 906-487-2219. We look forward to hearing from you, and seeing your children this summer!.

Snowfall Contest Reminder

snow comp
Enter to Win!
Snow is a popular topic of conversation among Michigan Tech students, alumni and friends. From snowball fights across Highway 41 to digging out the wrong car in the parking lot after a blizzard, there are many great stories about snowy experiences in the Keweenaw. Correctly predict the amount of snow that will fall in the Keweenaw this season and win a stay at the Keweenaw Mountain Lodge and a Michigan Tech Winter Survival Kit. Visit www.mtu.edu/snowfall to enter. The deadline is Tuesday, February 15.

Fill in the Blanks

Remember 2005 Carnival broomball action at the Dee, with the DZs? Email me.

When was this one?

delt sigsDelt Sigs, but we don't have a year. Email me.
View more sports >

Tech Sports

BSU Winter Carnival Champs with Saturday Night Win

women's basketball
Jordan George scored with 1:33 remaining to lift Bemidji State to a 1-0 win over the Michigan Tech hockey team Saturday (Feb. 12). BSU was named Winter Carnival champs with the win after the two teams tied 2-2 the previous night. “I thought we were solid defensively,” said head coach Jamie Russell. “We had some good chances offensively.” More

No. 8 Ladies Need Overtime to Beat LSSU 70-68

Lindsey Lindstrom's layup with 31 seconds left stood up as the game winner in Michigan Tech's 70-68 overtime victory at Lake Superior State today. The Huskies had two-point leads at the end of both regulation and overtime, but it was in the overtime that Tech got the defensive stop it needed to claim the win.

Men's Hoops Win at Lake State

ali hader

Michigan Tech claimed its first men's basketball road victory since Dec. 11 with a 78-62 triumph at Lake Superior State today. The Huskies (12-10, 7-8 GLIAC) received 19 points from Ali Haidar and 18 more from Mike Hojnacki to gain the season split with the Lakers (14-9, 8-8 GLIAC). More

Sports Summary

What’s Happening | Composite Schedule

Tuesday, February 15
Cager Club Luncheon, 12 noon (Grant Hockey Ed Center)

Wednesday, February 16
Huskies Drive Time, 7:30-8 a.m. (Mix 93.5 FM)

Thursday, February 17
Men’s Basketball hosts Ashland, 5:30 p.m. (Mix 93.5 FM)
Women’s Basketball hosts Ashland, 7:30 p.m. (Mix 93.5 FM)

Friday, February 18
Hockey at Denver, 9:37 p.m. (Mix 93.5 FM)

Saturday, February 19
Nordic Skiing hosts NCAA Central Regional
Men’s Basketball hosts Lake Erie, 1 p.m. (Mix 93.5 FM)
Women’s Basketball hosts Lake Erie, 3 p.m. (Mix 93.5 FM)

Hockey at Denver, 9:07 p.m. (Mix 93.5 FM)

All times Eastern. • Home events in bold.

Last Week’s Results

Hockey (3-23-4, 1-19-2 WCHA)
2/11 — at Michigan Tech 2, Bemidji State 2, OT
2/12 — Bemidji State 1, at Michigan Tech 0

Women’s Basketball (19-2, 14-1 GLIAC)
2/12 — No. 8 Michigan Tech 70, at Lake Superior State 68, OT

Men’s Basketball (12-10, 7-8 GLIAC)
2/12 — Michigan Tech 78, at Lake Superior State 62

Nordic Skiing
2/12-13 — Michigan Tech 3rd of 10 teams at Central Collegiate Ski Association Championships (Ishpeming, Mich.)

More News

Eriksson Wins Conference Title, Regional up Next
Michigan Tech’s Malin Eriksson won the 15-kilometer classic race at the Central Collegiate Ski Association Championships with a sprint to the finish over Carolyn Freeman of Green Bay. Mikko Harju led the men’s team with a pair of fifth place finishes in the freestyle and classic races. The Huskies finished third as a team at the conference championships. Tech will host the NCAA Central Regional Feb. 18-19.

Around the Keweenaw

Fallout Shelter Offers Clues to the Past

fallout shelter

In the 1950s and 60s, many Americans were afraid the Soviet Union was going to send nuclear missiles against them at any moment, so some people built blast shelters in their backyards, and the United States government even encouraged the construction of fallout shelters in existing buildings. More

Artist’s Floor at Final Four

Working through the nights, Lori Sleeman moved along the hardwood floor with nothing but her tools and a design. It's familiar to her. She trekked back and forth across the large canvas and painted a basketball at one end and then one at the other. More

Chili for Charity

It's been a month since Michigan Technological University junior Paul Castle was involved with a fatal car accident, and the construction management student has been undergoing treatment at the University of Michigan Medical Center. More

From the Email Bag

Goldilocks and the Three Bears: 1973!

1973 statue The picture of the three bears with one standing on a spoon handle trying to get it loose was from the DHH statue at Winter Carnival in February, 1973. I know this, I was a Freshman then staying at DHH and more than a little of my time went into that thing.

Some details:

DHH was allowed to compete in Category 1 that year with the fraternities. We pretty much swept everything and took first place.

The statue took first place. The bear on the spoon is held up in mid air by a structural steel weldment counterbalanced by the standing bear. The hanging bear is also supported with structural steel. This was a first at the time. The fabricator was Zalk Josephs in Duluth to plans drawn by a student. They donated the time and steel. We used some of the same blueprints to lay out and build the statue.

The walls were slip formed with slush and plywood forms. Set the form, fill with slush, give it a few minutes to freeze, disassemble the form, and move on. The slush was made in concrete mixing boats and placed by bucket brigade. The walls were made in three four foot lifts.

The wall and interior details were added later with slush.

There was a massive slush pile that you can't see, about 15 x 15 x 15 ft with a stairway, that started as an iced down pile of snow put there with a campus loader. This was the only mechanically placed snow. The block was formed with hot water hoses, which acted like cutting torches.

The rest of the snow was mined from the surrounding area and the outdoor tennis courts that were east of DHH, using Yooper Scoopers. The advantage of this was that we had clean snow to work with. The wall was on the south and west side of the statue and we got it up just before an unusual warm spell that lasted almost a week. Many of the statues on campus were having problems with melting snow from the warm air and rain that was falling. Ours held tight without too much damage.

the walls shielded the statue from the worst of the warm wind and sunlight. With the clean snow there was no dirt or salt in it to contribute to the melting.

The bears started out as columns of hand placed slush. The columns were then carved into shape with hot water hoses and finally detailed with slush. They were cast around the structural steel supports.

We lost a couple days to warm weather when it stayed above freezing all night.

When the cold returned we went back at it.

Some of the details include:

Wood grain on the log walls. Pictures on the walls. Logs and a fire in the fireplace made from cast ice and frozen slush. A fully formed bed with mattress, pillows and sheet formed from slush. A stone fireplace with ice candles on the mantle. Formed silverware and dishes on the table. Windows in the walls with interior and exterior details. About half of the details you see were finalized the night before judging in a massive all nighter.

Shortly after judging we got about 6 inches of fresh snow which was promptly swept off for the visitors. A blind child and his parent from Marquette was allowed up on the statue to wander around. For the first time he was able to feel what a fire looked like.

About a month after Winter Carnival the campus loader went around knocking down the statues for safety. The walls went down easy but the bears stood and the massive block on the east end was only nicked. The block lasted until sometime in April when it softened up and was spread out to thaw.

Somehow the stars all aligned that year and it was not to be repeated.

By the way, does anyone remember our winter carnival skit from that year with the Mission Impossible guys going after a rogue man eating pasty? Ken Westphal and I wrote it.

Hard to believe that was already 38 years ago. Seems like yesterday.

Bruce Kettunen '76

Bruce: Thanks for the great history! I couldn't include all the responses to this one!


I don’t know when this was but I do remember seeing some details of the engineering for this statue. If I remember correctly, the bear on the spoon is on a lever and the mother/child bear are on the other end of the lever. Obviously there was something other than snow inside the spoon in order to be able to hold a load like that. In the early 1980’s when I was there, someone put together a history of snow statues at Tech and included that one as an example of the engineering that went into a statue. You might check the Winter Carnival Pictorials for clues.

Sorry, I couldn’t be of more help.

Arden White

Arden: I got plenty of help!


Has to be the early 70’s, maybe 1970. I started as a freshman in fall of 69, and saw this statue, so had to be 70’s. It was called something like “let’s take a walk while the porridge thaws”. It was said to be one of the first “engineered” statues, with the Mama bear attached to the Papa bear on the spoon by an under-snow I-beam or something as a counterweight so it wouldn’t all tip over.

I much enjoy the bi-weekly connection. My wife Derry (73) and I get on campus every year or so when we’re vacationing in the Keweenaw. Interesting to watch the changes on campus.

Thomas O'Connor 1973


Actually, that was 'my' statue when I ran for Carnival Queen (I think it was 1973). It was 'dedicated' to me and made by the great men of Douglass Houghton Hall (my sponsors). Papa Bear's spoon actually has a metal I-bar for strength. DHH won statues hands down that year - I think it was the first year that the halls were allowed to compete in the same class as the frats. I have never seen such levels of detail in a statue.

Becky Christiansen


bearThe snow statue was built by DHH in 1973, the year I graduated. Here are a few more pictures of it for your files.

Curt Johnson
Class of 73

Curt: I chose this one because of the nice detail it shows.


Not 60’s. It was in the 70’s while I was there. Something about, “Let’s take a walk while the porridge thaws.” There will be lots of DHH folks who can tell you the exact date and caption. It was very clever engineering, but was controversial because of its use of structural steel inside of the spoon handle to support Papa Bear. I don’t remember if it was disqualified. The rules at that time had not specifically DISallowed such support, but I think that restriction was put in for the next year.

Fran Hanchek ’76, ‘81


Hi Dennis,
I recognized the winter carnival statue right away. I remember helping to build it and being impressed on how it was designed to have one of the 3 bears standing on the porridge spoon. I had to check my yearbooks to determine which year, and found it on page 238 and 239 in the 1973 Keweenawan. 1st place for DHH.

Herb Blue, BSEE '73


This three bears themed sculpture was in front of DHH winter carnival 73. I moved off campus the summer of 72, but my former room mate Jim Bilicki ( sorry if I misspelled your last name Jim) worked on it. I remember the “udder disaster” down in front of the Sherman gym as well. The theme was fairy tales and the cow didn’t quite make it over the moon.

Rick Davis 74&76


As to the ice statue, I think it was called "My porridge is too cold" and it was built by DHH. It had an iron frame for the spoon.

I believe DHH won the statue competition that year, I think winter carnival 74 (I was there from 72 to 76). The frats were not to happy about a dorm winning the snow statue competition.

The next year, Delta Sig built one with a pipe sticking straight up that acted as a geyser with the cartoon character Cummly on top of the geyser. The judges disqualified them because the metal was too "integral" to the design.

I think that year the TECs won with a bar scene, I believe they cut the log marks into the snow with a chain saw.

Dave McCartney


Hello Dennis,
What a surprise and thrill to see this photo. This was the first statue I worked on as a resident of DHH. It was in 1973. In a very controversial vote of 7 to 7 the Council President broke the tie in favor of allowing a residence hall entry into the Class A competition. DHH went on to take first place in the Statue and Stage Event competition and placed well enough in the other competitions to win first overall in Class A.

The title of the DHH statue was “Let’s Take a Walk While the Porridge Thaws” with an overall carnival theme of “Frigid Fairy Tales.” New rules had to be written to allow the use of structural steel that supported the cantilever designs.

Don Afman ‘76


Dennis……This is the 1973 Winter Carnival Winner --- from DHH…….great group of guys, most of us on first floor east were freshman, we learned a lot from the upper classman, even about how to build snow statues!!!! Great memories ---- thanks for all you do to keep Tech vivid to all alumni!!!.......Bob Mihos ‘75

1948 Carnival Statues

1948 1948


From Paul Goode '50


Carnival Concert

2005 Concert
The picture is of two bands actually. The guy with the Mic is John Hughson from the Pisst Off Androids. I was a member with him. The guitarists shown are from the Hypocrites. The guy with the big smile and red shirt is Russel Sanborn.

Also I believe this picture is from 2004 since John and I graduated in

Marcus Haney 2004

Thanks, Marcus.


Pictured in the 2005 Carnival concert photo is ‘The Hypocrites’. My husband, Mike Haessler was their drummer. The guy in the grey t-shirt furthest from the camera is Casey Holmes (bass), the guy in the red t-shirt is Russell Sanborn (guitar). The guest vocalist is the drummer from the Pisst Off Androids, John Hughson. I’m also in the photo, watching the show in the front—long black hair (impulsive dye job-yikes!), pink t-shirt. I think this was for the MUB Battle of the Bands. Fond memories!

Alanna Haessler

The Answer to the WDHH Mystery?

Alums: You might remember from last time my WDHH whodunit: when did the station disappear and why? We might have our answer:

I seem to remember my freshman year in 1976, we had been listening to WDHH for a few weeks in the fall, when it suddenly stopped in the middle of a song, and was never heard from again. Rumor had it that the FCC had pulled the plug on it, but I was never able to confirm that first-hand.
Jon Erwood '80

And an Answer about Oobleck

Hi Dennis,
An alum wrote in about seeing an MTU Oobleck demonstration in Green Bay and wondered what the practical application might be. Oobleck is a fun way to demonstrate dilatant fluid behavior. Google can supply links to all kinds of applications. What the kids enjoy about the demonstration is the unexpected behavior of the fluid—it becomes more solid the more force you apply and more fluid again when you stop. The opposite effect is called thixotropic (think soft-serve ice cream)—acts like a solid at rest and becomes more liquid when disturbed.

Al Niemi

Achilles 5K Run at Schmohz

Time once again for the Achilles 5k run at Schmohz. Join us for this fun run on April 16th. Yes, there will be beer for runners and walkers. We will be limiting the registrations to 350 again this year so sign up soon.

Flyer http://www.Schmohz.com/5k.pdf

Registration http://www.Schmohz.com/race

If you have questions that are not answered by the flyer, stop in for a beer, or call me.

Schmohz Brewery
2600 Patterson S.E.
Grand Rapids, MI 49546
Phone: 616-949-0860

Featured Alumni Benefits

Show Your Pride! Order your Michigan Tech license plate today!

license plate 
When you purchase a Michigan Technological University plate, not only do you show your Husky Pride, but you also support programs for alumni and students.  For an additional fee, your Michigan Tech plate can be personalized.

Don’t live in Michigan? Then you need a collector Michigan Tech license plate!

Whether you purchase a regular plate or collector plate, a portion of the purchase fee is given to the university.

To order visit: http://www.michigan.gov/documents/orderform_mtu_16221_7.pdf

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Job Opportunities

On Campus

SFHI Faculty Positions in Energy and Health

Complete Job Descriptions are available on the Human Resources website.

Off Campus

Keweenaw jobs: