May 9, 2011
Vol. 17, No. 19
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Coach Pearson

Jess Thoresen
Coach Mel Pearson '81

Michigan Tech Athletic Director Suzanne Sanregret has appointed former Huskies’ player and assistant coach and long-time University of Michigan associate head coach Mel Pearson to the position of head hockey coach. Pearson, who spent the last 23 years at Michigan helping the Wolverines to a 667-243-71 record, 11 Frozen Fours and two national championships, will be introduced at a press conference Tuesday (May 10).

“I’m very excited and grateful for this opportunity,” said Pearson. “Michigan Tech was the school that gave me my first chance not only as a player but as a coach, and I’m looking forward to working with the University, alumni and community in bringing back the winning tradition.”

“I’m thrilled that our search has led us to someone with the quality background of Mel,” said Sanregret. “He has extensive experience in all aspects of college hockey, but his reputation as a recruiter made him our top candidate. He has contacts within all of hockey from juniors to the professional ranks, and he’s well connected to our alumni.”

Pearson, a former winner of the Terry Flanagan Award which honors an assistant coach’s career, has been hailed as one of the best recruiters in the nation. He was credited with landing the bulk of the players on Michigan’s 1996 and 1998 NCAA championship teams, and has recruited dozens of All-Americans and several Hobey Baker finalists during his time in Ann Arbor. A total of 54 Michigan players have gone on to play in the NHL since 1988. More

Dennis '92, '09


I could have done another snowfall total (six inches of slush this week), but I refuse. I'm a golfer in denial.

At Tech

Students Helps Tech Alumni Tackle Engineering Issues

Norm Augustine
R. W. Fernstrum & Company and Michigan Tech found ideal research partners in each other. The Menominee manufacturing company is run by Michigan Tech alumni, and by sponsoring several Senior Capstone Design projects, they’ve been able to harness the creative mind-power of another generation of Tech engineering students. More

Board of Control Approves Budget, Tuition for 2011-2012

At a regular meeting today, Michigan Tech’s Board of Control passed a $160 million general fund budget for fiscal year 2012, which begins July 1, 2011. It includes an increase of 6.95 percent in tuition and mandatory fees. The Board previously increased room and board rates by 2.2 percent for next year. More

BonzAI! Let the Brawling Begin

If playing video games maniacally for hours seems a little over the top to you, consider Michigan Tech’s BonzAI Brawl. Teams of dedicated programmers code relentlessly for eight hours straight. Their mission: develop an artificial intelligence (that’s where BonzAI’s AI comes from) that will play a given game and defeat all comers. More

Alumni Around the World

Alumni Association Begins Traditions Fellowships and Scholarships

As the Generations of Discovery Campaign progresses, important initiatives are arising. An excellent example is the new Traditions of Giving Fellowship and Scholarships for incoming and current Michigan Tech students. Sponsored by the Alumni Association, this fund will distribute $90,000 beginning this fall.

Scholarships and fellowships have long enabled students to attend Michigan Tech, including those who might not otherwise be able to enroll.

“I am a foster youth, transitioning to adulthood, and I am on my own when it comes to funding,” said psychology major Angela Hoffman. “So, that scholarship is essential to me being here. While I’m at Tech, I want to learn how to help other people.”

Troy Bouman, a mechanical engineering student, echoed Angela’s thoughts on funding. “If it wasn’t for my scholarships, I could not have come here.”

The fellowships and scholarships are funded by the investment earnings income generated from an endowed fund of the Michigan Tech Alumni Association. This endowment was created through the generosity of alumni and friends who have supported the Alumni Association over the years.

The Alumni Association will provide $30,000 per year for three years, beginning this fall: $10,000 for graduate fellowships and $20,000 for undergraduate scholarships each year. The awards will be $1,000 per student, with the following guidelines:

  • Awardees must contribute to the goals of the Michigan Tech Plan.
  • Awards will be used for incoming and current students in need as defined by Michigan Tech’s Financial Aid Office and Graduate School.

In addition, the Alumni Association Board of Directors will welcome each student to the University, tell them how the fellowship or scholarship was created, and encourage them to connect to the alumni network and get involved in alumni events.

If you would like to help support the Traditions of Giving Fellowship and Scholarships, please contact Alumni Relations at 906-487-2400 or email

HuskyLink: Celebrating Four Years of Creating Connections

Since its launch in February 2007, HuskyLink has registered over 14,600 members and has attracted over 109,000 unique visits from 142 countries around the world. HuskyLink's exclusive alumni features complement Michigan Tech’s presence on today’s mainstream social networks such as Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter.

HuskyLink is the only resource where you can access the entire Michigan Tech alumni family through its versatile online directory, which averages over 50,000 hits per year. Alumni and students can network with others by searching standard directory fields, or class year, major, and employer.

Other unique features include our professional mentoring program, which allows students to connect with alumni for career guidance.

To celebrate the success of HuskyLink and its new makeover, new and current members have an opportunity to win some exciting prizes.

Simply enter the drawing by:

* Updating Your Information
* Submitting a Class Note
* Using the Directory (Send Member an Email)
* note: only one entry per action for max of three entries per member

Prizes include:

* 1st - New Husky Themed iPad
* 2nd - Reunion 2011 Ticket Package and Lodging for Two
* 3rd - $200 Campus Store Gift Card
* 4th - $100 Campus Store Gift Card
* 5th - $50 Campus Store Gift Card

So checkout HuskyLink today and explore your network.

Fill in the Blanks


I was in the Varsity Singers (1968-1972). Do you have any pictures of us or a list of who was in?

Thom Kalkman

Thom: I was able to find the above photo in the 1972 Keweenawan. It is clickable. Perhaps alums can find themselves in this mixed musical bag. You can email me.

Also, a reunion of the Varsity Singers and the Jazz Singers is being planned for August 4, 5, and 6, 2011 on campus as part of the University's annual Alumni Reunion. Stay tuned for details!

Spring Commencement 2007

hpvDid you walk in May 2007? It's clickable. Email me.
View more sports >

Tech Sports

Track and Field Teams Conclude Season at GLIAC Championships

spring football
Quinn Parnell

The Michigan Tech track and field teams concluded the outdoor season at the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championships Friday (May 6th). Quinn Parnell posted the highest finish of the day with a fifth place finish in both the 100 (10.79) and 200 (22.11). Teammate Akeem Cason also qualified for the finals of the 100, finishing seventh (10.86). More

Around the Keweenaw

Engineering Olympics

From mousetrap cars to trebuchet experiments, more than 100 high school students from across the Upper Peninsula participated in the Engineering Olympics held in the Student Development Complex at Michigan Tech. Crystal Payment, of the department of engineering fundamentals, said the students worked with toothpick bridges and launched water balloons high into the air during the morning's events Friday. More

Township Seeks Brockway Mountain property

The summit of the Keweenaw Coastal Wildlife Corridor, better known as Brockway Mountain, has served as a prime locale to view raptors in the flyway, and one local township aims to protect the area. Eagle Harbor Township in Keweenaw County is working toward acquiring 320 acres of land known as Brockway Mountain in an attempt to protect and preserve the land. More

Calumet Theatre Hosts Local History Smackdown

The Diamond Match Devils, a team from Ontonagon Area High School, has proven to be the team to beat every year. For another year, the team has taken the title at the ninth annual High School Local History Smackdown, held Thursday evening at the Calumet Theatre in Calumet. More

From the Email Bag

The "Tech" Plane

Dennis, I noticed that the plane had Purdue thereon. Was Tech borrowing the plane from Purdue? I graduated from Tech in 1966 and also from Purdue in 1960.

Joe Palermo

Joe: Answer below.


The picture is of a DC-3. The Convair 440 has a nose wheel. Purdue has had a very active aviation program and this was one that they owned.

The only story that I have is that a member of our flying club, Ann Arbor Flyers, years ago was going into CMX with the Piper Cherokee six that we owned. He got rather low on the instrument approach and touched the top of some trees. It caused a minor dent in the underside of the wing but was still flyable and he went to Marquette to land. Came very close to being much worse. Very lucky. Also very poor due to being below minimums where he made contact with the trees. I do not know which approach was in use and thus do not have more information. This was about 25 years ago.

There are no real harrowing stories when I have gone into CMX in aircraft. The great visibility in the UP is so wonderful. I still remember being over the Marquette area and being able to see the area of the airport in the distance. On a clear day you can see very long distances up there.

The only problem is during the long winter, there is so much snow on the ground that once I was unable to see anything other than snowbanks from the runway. Not until you taxi back to the turn offs can you see anything.

Chris Hill



North Central had a DC-3 Named North Liner Michigan Tech (N38943 C-49D 3280 DEL 12/52 EOS 06/66 N/L MICHIGAN TECH)

North Central Also had another one named North Liner Copper Country and then change to North Liner North Dakota (N33632 DC3-201G 4138 Del 07/53 EOS11/64 N/L COPPER COUNTY; N/L NORTH DAKOTA)

The Hockey tem did fly quite a bit (North Central and then Republic) even into the late 70's.. A lot of the trips were on CONVAIRS (not Corvairs) either 340's, 440's or 580's

I went thru this list of every Convair frame manufactured and if there was a Michigan Tech registration in the list I missed it ....

Scott D. Hartz


The plane in the picture is one that Tech used to use when they flew out west to the hockey games in Colorado ---- Colorado College and University of Denver. That plane was owned by Purdue University and was rented out for many trips to Tech. The plane in the picture is a DC-3 and I will never forget the time Tech beat Clarkson (7-1) to win the NCAA National Championship in Hockey ----- that took place in 1962. I remember that day as when about one half of the student body went to CMX and welcomed the team back home on a Sunday afternoon.

On the subject of air service to the Copper Country who can ever forget the great service that regularly brought about eight flights per day into CMX. In the early ‘60s the airport was even an international airport as there was scheduled service to Port Arthur/Fort William, Ontario – now know as Thunder Bay. There was also service to Marquette, Ironwood, Iron Mountain flights all stopped in Green Bay where you could transfer to9 the flights that continued on to Milwakee and Chicago. At Green Bay, the plane would even continue on to Grand Rapids, Lansing, and Detroit. Originally the service was DC-3, then it became Convair 340/440/550, and finally there was even DC-9 service – can you imagine that full blown jet service to downstate in the 1960’s? Service was originally by North Central Airline (affectionately known as the Blue Goose). Who can ever forget the name of the Goose on the tail of the plane --- it was Herman. Of course North Central was re-christened Republic Airline when it was merged with Southern Airways and West Coast Airlines. Service has sure dwindled since that era – and fares have skyrocketed at the same time. I guess there is no longer any direct connection to the lower peninsula – what a shame.

Just rambling on ---- hope this helps with some info.

Les Syring
1961 – 1968 but never graduated from Tech

Les: I remember the puddle jumpers very well!

The Flood of 1978

Oh how I remember the Flood of 1978. The picture with the caption...Shiny Red Camero...this was Bill Blumhardt's, who was Heating Plant Supervisor and at the Ad Bldg for a meeting with the President when the rain came. A few days prior, he had decided to sell it. This delayed that. the seats pulled out and big turbo heaters on them; they dried hard as a rock. Weeks later they were replaced, and the car was sold to Milt Olson's son...I do think it was Stephen!!! He too has stories to tell of his many years of fun in his camero.

Joanne Blumhardt


I remember it well, I had class in Fisher and lived in COED hall at the time, the water was flowing so deep down 41 that we went to class in shorts with no shoes or socks to wade over to fisher. ;-)

Great seeing the pictures from Barry Felton, Barry was from my home town of Michigan city, Ind and I came up here a year or two behind him.

Bob Gilreath

Happy Alumni Legacy Family!

father and son

Benjamin Fedorka '11 (honors student, Pep Band member and a Residence Assistant) with father Thomas Fedorka '84 and '94 Mechanical Engineering.

Ben's mother Suzanne Fedorka, is an '84 Forestry alumna.

Mind Trekkers Make Their Mark in TC

This is an outstanding outreach, and a terrific video segment to advertise it. I would strongly endorse and support it. This is how STEM education can gain a foot hold. It is not logos we are after, but pathos! We will instill the logos on campus. Capture their hearts, their heads will follow...

My Best,
Terry Woychowski

iClickers on the Campus Tour

Kathy [Ross of the Admissions Office],
You guys hit it out of the park!! Great job!!

I didn't know it until yesterday when Mark was giving me a run down on their visit that they had been to four other campuses for visits earlier this year. Michigan Tech was by the far the most impressive. The most important reason was the "people". The attitude they experienced was way better than what they had seen at the other schools.

The prospect "Luke" is apparently very interested in computer engineering. His younger brother has indicated that Tech is his choice and he is just finishing 7th grade.

I am really proud to be associated with such an outstanding institution.

I do have a note of interest for the football coach. If you could tell me how to contact him by phone I will give him a call.

Doug Seeber

P.S. They were really impressed with the hand held remote devices that have been introduced and they got to use to answer questions about miles driven etc. I am really interested in learning more about them. In fact I think that should be featured in the Alumni Newsletter.

Doug: And so it is! And here's the response from the Admissions Office:

From: Erin Jarvi

Hi Doug,
Thank you for the note, I'm glad to hear that Luke enjoyed his campus tour last week! We work hard to give prospective students the excellent campus experience that they'll receive when they're students here as well.

In regards to your iClicker inquiry, here is a website that I think you'll find helpful:

Instructors use these devices quite a bit in the classroom, so we like to give a little snippet of this technology when prospective students tour campus.

Thanks again for the nice feedback!

Best regards,
Erin Jarvi
Campus Visit Coordinator
Regional Admissions Manager

Alum Makes Governor's Board of Mechanical Rules

Jerry Philo '80 was appointed to the Board of Mechanical Rules.,1607,7-277-57577-255541--,00.html

Mike Cooper

Congrats, Jerry! And thanks, Mike.

More on Ed Vandette

Dennis -
I missed the issue where you had a piece about Professor Ed Vandette but enjoyed the comments it received. I took an elective in Russian History from him back in the late 1960s or early 1970. It has to rank right up there with the best two or three courses I ever took at Tech. It wasn't necessarily the content of the class, although I learned a lot about the Russians, but it was how he conducted his class.

He would wander in and start to discuss current events and get the entire class fired up, commenting and participating about whatever it was that was happening. This would usually go on until about 10:30 am (it was a 10 to 11:00 am three credit course). When this first happened I wondered if I was ever going to learn anything about Russian History. Well, then he would shut down the discussion and proceed to lecture at a rapid rate and with numerous facts until 11:00 am. I never had to take notes so fast in my life and boy, did I learn that history.

I really began to look forward to each class and wouldn't dream of missing one. My experiences in his class have often prompted me to relate how I once had a professor at Tech that would lecture in "machine-gun" style. It was memorable, even to this day. He also didn't mind sharing a beverage or two at the Dog House and was very popular outside of class as well. He definitely left an impression on you after taking a class from him. He was great.

Bill Deephouse

Smithsonian Article on the UP

Something I think all will enjoy, and smile at national exposure ....

The Wonderful Wilderness of Michigan's Upper Peninsula
Immortalized by Longfellow, the Midwest's preferred vacation spot offers unspoiled forests, waterfalls and coastal villages

* By Jonathan Kandell
* Photographs by Scott S. Warren
* Smithsonian magazine, May 2011

Read more:

Scott D Hartz

That Batty Kerredge Theater

Hi Dennis,
Hope this will be of interest to you and your readers.

My brother Donald (Piedmont, CA) and I will be trekking to the UP for The Annual alumni get-together this August.

I would be interested in contacting other members of my graduating class concerning the August outing, but lack email addresses for them. How do I go about getting these?

Willard Johnson
Class of '51

Note: I put Willard in touch with the Alumni Relations folks to get connected.

Pasty Winners Downstate

You might have seen this already. If not,


John B. Lehman

Commencement at the Dee

If Ron Hughes had his commencement at the Dee in 1973, that would have been the last one at the Dee as I graduated in Spring of 1974 and it was at the SDC. Mr. Honda gave the commencement address which had to be translated. At the end of the graduation program, a new Honda 500 motorcycle was rolled in and a name was picked out of a hat. Mike Comstock, a fellow Civil Engineering grad from Traverse City, MI (sitting right behind me) won the motorcycle. I’ve often wondered if Mike still has that bike as I would guess it would be hard to get rid of if it came from Mr. Honda himself.

Jim Botz, ‘74


I graduated in June 1973 and the ceremony was held in the (then) new hockey arena.

Enjoy the newsletter and school news. Keep up the good work.

Bob Borges
BS Met Eng 1973


My class of 1972 was the first class to graduate at the new ice arena which had just opened. It was a big deal because there was no ticket limit for family members as there had been at the Dee. Of course now tickets are limited again as the school has grown since that time. Gretchen isn't losing her memory!

Harold Kennedy '72

Featured Alumni Benefits

GradMed Health Insurance


GradMed® short-term health insurance is a valuable benefit provided by the Alumni Association.  An ideal product for new graduates and alumni in between jobs, with GradMed you can choose a coverage period and deductible that meets your needs, protecting you from the expenses associated with an accident or illness.  Coverage can begin as early as the day after receipt of your application.

Call 1-800-922-1245  or apply online

The Alumni Insurance Program provides funds to the Michigan Tech Alumni Association as part of this collaboration. Agreements like this help support a wide range of programs and services for alumni and students.


Show your Michigan Tech Pride with Tech Gear

Job Opportunities

On Campus

Assistant Director, Alumni Relations

Director of Student Activities, Student Activities, Revised and Reposted

Engineer/Scientist, Materials Science and Engineering

Programmer/Analyst (two positions), Administrative Information Services/Enterprise Application Services

Assistant Hockey Coach, Athletic Department

Recruiter and Outreach Coordinator, School of Business and Economics

Complete Descriptions are available on the Human Resources website.

Off Campus

Keweenaw opportunities:

Other employment opportunities: Check out the Linked in group exclusively for Michigan Tech Alumni.

Also, visit the Career Tools webpage for more options.