Semi-Finalist for Provost and VP of Academic Affairs on Campus

The second semi-finalist candidate for the position of Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, Max Seel, will be interviewed on campus Monday, Jan. 25, and Tuesday, Jan. 26. Seel holds the position on an interim basis and is also a professor of physics.

Seel will participate in an open forum for the campus community from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m., Jan. 25, in Rekhi G05. The remainder of Seel's schedule and curriculum vita can be viewed under the "Candidates" link on the search committee website, . This and the remaining open forums will be recorded and made available at the search committee website.

The Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs search committee encourages the campus community to interact with Seel during his visit and to evaluate his suitability for the position. Comments and opinions can be submitted online at , or by contacting members of the search committee. A listing of the committee members can be found at .

The third and last semi-finalist candidate visit is scheduled as follows: Jeff Wright, Feb. 1-2. James Coleman, who was originally scheduled for a campus visit on Jan. 28-29, has withdrawn his candidacy.

Van der Laan and 70 Others Honored for Academics by GLIAC

Football player John van der Laan (Grand Rapids) and 71 total Michigan Tech student-athletes have been honored for their academic success by the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.

Van der Laan was named a Fall 2009 Commissioner's Award recipient. He and 70 other student-athletes from the sports of cross country, football, volleyball, and women's tennis gained Academic All-GLIAC accolades.

Van der Laan earned one of only six Commissioner's Awards handed out by the GLIAC to male student-athletes involved in fall sports. The Huskies' linebacker totaled 51 tackles, including two for loss in 2009, to finish his four-year career with 212 tackles. Van der Laan was Tech's Fred Baird Memorial Award winner as the defensive player of the year. He owns a team-leading 3.97 cumulative grade point average in electrical engineering.

Commissioner's Awards, which are based on academic and athletic excellence, are handed out to six female and six male student-athletes for the fall, winter and spring seasons.

Academic All-GLIAC Awards are given to all non-first-year student-athletes with a 3.0 cumulative grade point average who are active members of their team's roster.

Of Michigan Tech's 71 Academic All-GLIAC honorees, 33 were from football, 17 from women's cross country, 11 from men's cross country, seven from volleyball and three from women's tennis. Football and men's cross country had the highest number of award winners in their respective sports.

The full list of winners is below.

Men's Cross Country
Mackenzie Brennan, Physics, East Jordan, Mich.
Zachary Carlson, Audio Production and Technology, Hayward, Wis.
Kyle Demerath, Electrical Engineering, Green Bay
Luke Geisor, Engineering, Waukesha, Wis.
Kenneth Gilkerson, Mechanical Engineering, Brooklyn Park, Minn.
Scott Kentner, Forestry, Grand Ledge, Mich.
Jesse Lang, Electrical Engineering, Saint Louis Park, Minn.
Colin Singleton, Civil Engineering, Eagle River, Alaska
Petter Andre Sjulstad, Engineering, Krokstadelva, Norway
Nicholas Wimmer, Chemical Engineering, Charlevoix, Mich.
Lucas Wyzlic, Biomedical Sciences, Ironwood, Mich.

Women's Cross Country
Sydney Bruestle, Biological Sciences, White Bear Lake, Minn.
Sarah Gray, Biomedical Engineering, Denmark, Wis.
Melanie Hoffman, Exercise Science, Pulaski, Wis.
Karen Jarvey, Mechanical Engineering, Calumet, Mich.
Jenna Klein, Exercise Science, Ely, Minn.
Christina Michica, Health and Physical Education, Hancock, Mich.
Darcy Mundahl, Biomedical Sciences, Winona, Minn.
Jaclyn Pribyl, Biological Sciences, Stillwater, Minn.
Elizabeth Quinley, Civil Engineering, Anchorage, Alaska
Lauren Rantala, Exercise Science, Eden Prairie, Minn.
Megan Smaby, Civil Engineering, Neenah, Wis.
Jill Smith, Forestry, Bemidji, Minn.
Alison Springer-Wilson, Chemical Engineering, Dearborn, Mich.
Samantha Stam, Chemistry, Negaunee, Mich.
Lisa Weidemann, Environmental Engineering, Andover, Minn.
Lauren Wiza, Scientific and Technical Arts, Cedarburg, Wis.
Kathryn Wold, Biomedical Engineering, Maple Grove, Minn.

David Bellomy, Biomedical Engineering, Detroit, Mich.
Emmett Bjorn, Mechanical Engineering, Calumet, Mich.
Mat Brynick, Civil Engineering, Dewitt, Mich.
David Carmody, Civil Engineering, Newberry, Mich.
Matt Carothers, Forestry, Edgerton, Mich.
Tyler Cattelino, Civil Engineering, Houghton, Mich.
Jacob Clark, Engineering, Lansing, Mich.
Ian Coughlin, Health and Physical Education, Madison Heights, Mich.
Matthew Curtin, Civil Engineering, Sturgeon Bay, Wis.
Matt Desotell, Civil Engineering, Green Bay, Wis.
Brian Fabbri, Civil Engineering, Crystal Falls, Mich.
Matt Gaudard, Engineering, Mount Pleasant, Mich.
Ryan Glaser, Chemical Engineering, Sault Sainte Marie, Mich.
Josh Hauswirth, Engineering, White Bear Lake, Minn.
Brent Heim, Civil Engineering, Green Bay, Wis.
Jacob Klingelhutz, Mathematics, Kingsford, Mich.
Erik Markstrom, Business Administration,Northville, Mich.
Phil Milbrath, Health and Physical Education, Norway, Mich.
Chris Mullen, Engineering, Green Bay, Wis.
Michael Potes, Biomedical Sciences, Marquette, Mich.
Michael Rittenour, Mechanical Engineering, Becker, Minn.
Anthony Santi, Mechanical Engineering, Kingsford, Mich.
Charles Schlaud, Mechanical Engineering, Caro, Mich.
Tim Schmalz, Computer Engeering, Shawano, Mich.
Ethan Shaver, Biological Sciences, Menominee, Mich.
Steve Short, Exercise Science, Kingsford, Mich.
Bobby Slowik, Biomedical Engineering, Green Bay, Wis.
Justin Springer, Biomedical Engineering, Oregon, Wis.
Brian Stawowy, Engineering, Standish, Mich.
Tom Tollefson, Mathematics, DePere, Wis.
John VanderLaan, Electrical Engineering, Grand Rapids, Mich.
Chet White, Mechanical Engineering, Rhinelander, Wis.
Raymond Wojtala, History, Allen Park, Mich.

Women's Tennis
Asel Otunchieva, Business Administration, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
Nathalia Rondelli, Psychology, Macae, Brazil
Danielle Stoll, Biomedical Engineering, Green Bay, Wis.

Lyndsey Dixon, Business Administration, Stillwater, Minn.
Alison Greene, Psychology, Fridley, Minn.
Kaari Nevanen, Mechanical Engineering, Duluth, Minn.
Jaclynn Roberts, Biomedical Engineering, Kingsford, Mich.
Kathleen Storm, Exercise Science, Hancock, Mich.
Amanda Vogt, Business Administration, Plymouth, Minn.
Kaitlin Wiza, Humanities, Cedarburg, Wis.

Winter Carnival's Gearing Up: Come on Out and Play

Winter Carnival (theme: "Games We Know Captured in Snow") doesn't begin officially until 10 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 3, but plenty of fun is on tap before the final push to finish snow statues during the All Nighter.

A complete schedule of events is posted on Michigan Tech's Carnival website, along with photos and videos from 2009's event. Curling starts Saturday, Jan. 23, at the Calumet Drill House, and ice bowling, skating, ice fishing, snow volleyball and yooper sprint competitions are scheduled until Feb. 3.

Students will be voting for their Winter Carnival Queen candidates next week. The queen's rehearsal is set for 6 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 28, with a dress rehearsal at noon Saturday, Jan. 30. The Queen's Coronation, including the talent portion of the contest, begins at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 30.

Flags Flown at Half-Staff Today

Flags will be flown at half-staff today in honor of Army Sergeant Lucas T. Beachnaw of Lowell, who died in Darya Ya, Afghanistan, while on active duty supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

Beachnaw, 23, died Wednesday, Jan. 13. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team, Camp Ederle, Italy. Beachnaw had served one month of his second tour of duty in Afghanistan.

Dining Services Plans for Winter Carnival

Dining Services is anticipating Winter Carnival and the rush of crowds looking for food and hot drinks in between checking out the snow statues and other festivities.

"We want to accommodate everybody touring campus," said Matt Lean, associate director of Dining Services. "A good meal, a hot beverage, and someplace to warm up."

Accordingly, both the Library Café and the Commons Food Court will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 6. Both venues will serve their usual fare.

Lean expects "a decent amount of business" handled efficiently. "The lines will be short," he says, "and the foot traffic will be smooth and easy."

2010 F&A Rates Change

submitted by Sponsored Programs Office

The Office of Naval Research has finalized negotiations with Michigan Tech for our Facilities & Administrative (F&A) cost rate, effective July 1, 2009.

The new predetermined rate agreement can be found on the website of Sponsored Programs: .

The new rates are effective immediately for sponsored project proposal budgeting.

What does this mean for sponsored proposals and projects?

For projects awarded between July 1, 2009, and January 19, 2010, Michigan Tech is required by regulation to retroactively adjust the rate charged to awards when the final rate is lower than the rate used in the proposal budget. Therefore, in those instances, retroactive calculations will take place in the project indices to reflect the newly approved rates.

Where the final rate is higher than the rate used in the proposal budget, Michigan Tech has decided to grandfather those projects at the lower proposed rate. Please keep in mind the rate in the proposal budget may not be the same rate that will be charged to your project.

For existing and incrementally funded projects, awarded prior to July 1, 2009, the rate in effect at the time the project was awarded will continue to be charged for the life of the sponsored agreement. Incrementally funded projects exist when incremental awards will be received throughout the approved project period referenced in the original agreement; therefore, the F&A rates for these projects will remain the same.

The new rates will apply to supplemental or additional proposals where funding is being requested for work beyond what was contained in the original agreement. When awarded, the supplemental and additional funding will generally be given a new index number in order to account for the different rates.

All That Jazz (and More): Cabaret at the McArdle Friday and Saturday Nights

Aficionados of jazz, funk, and blues can get their groove on this weekend, as the Jazz Club Cabaret takes over the McArdle Theatre.

Three groups will perform each night, according to Mike Irish, director of jazz studies. Friday night, Michigan Tech’s JazTec and Momentum will be on stage, along with Calumet High School’s Jazz Experience, which is led by Scott Veenstra.

Saturday night features the return of RealTime with Charles White on keyboards, Kirsten White on vocals and flugelhorn, Adam Johnson on drums, and Mike Irish on guitars as they focus on contemporary jazz.

From Jaztec, fans can expect standards and today’s jazz, while Momentum pumps up the funk, and the selections from these two combos will differ each night.

Tickets cost $10 and are $5 for children age 18 and under. Tech students get in for free with ID. Both nights’ shows take off at 7:30 p.m.

Physics Professor Organizes June Workshop

Professor Ulrich Hansmann (Physics) is helping organize a workshop--"From Computational Biophysics to Systems Biology"--that will be held in Traverse City June 6 to 8.

The session will bring together scholars in physics, biology, and computer science to address such topics as folding and aggregation, protein-protein complexes, supramolecular assemblies, cellular environments and interaction networks.

Faculty are invited to make presentations. As well, students and postdocs can receive financial support for travel and lodging, the opportunity for oral and poster presentations, and consideration for research awards.

The registration deadline to be considered for presentations is April 1.

There will be no registration fee for accepted students and postdocs, but faculty and other researchers will be asked to pay a registration fee of $100 if paid by June 1 and $150 if paid on-site.

In organizing the event, Hansmann is working with Michael Feig of Michigan State University.

For more information, contact Hansmann at .

Teaching at Tech: Human Ecology

By William Kennedy, director, Center for Teaching, Learning and Faculty Development

Humans spend fortunes to construct supercomputers. For example, the Cray Jaguar, at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, has 255,000 processing cores, performs over two thousand trillion calculations per second, has 299 terabytes of memory, takes up 4300 square feet of space, and uses 7700 kilowatts of electricity to run its processors and cool itself. The only public cost estimate I could find associated with this machine was a hundred million dollars.

Vast arrays of interconnected, lower-power computers process information even faster, I'm told. Some see the loose assemblage of computers, smart phones, cell phones and other devices connected to the World Wide Web as another sort of ad hoc supercomputer.

Author Kevin Kelly writes, "Its circuit board encompasses the million copper wires and radio connections linking all the chips contained in the gadgets in your pocket, office and car. Instead of being powered by a mere billion tiny transistors, as your typical personal desktop is, it runs on a billion PC chips, each with its own billion transistors. Its memory is the collective hard disks and flash drives of the world. Its RAM is the sum of all memory chips online. Every second, a Library of Congress worth of data flow through it. The program it runs--its initial OS--is the World Wide Web." Kelly dubbed this new supercomputer, "One Machine."

There are nearly seven billion people potentially capable of providing unique inputs to be shared across all those interlinked computers and smart phones connected to this One Machine. Each of our three-pound brains is capable of storing a unique version of our own life stories, our shared experiences, musings, and insights, and the experiences of others with whom we have come into contact throughout our lives. Each of us carries one of these three-pound processing marvels capable of seeing new patterns--of coming up with an idea or insight that might change the world forever.

Maybe this One Machine provides everyone who has access to it the opportunity to share those new insights in ways we've only begun to imagine.

As ecologists have taught us that nature expresses itself in a web of intricate and highly interdependent connections, I can't begin to compute the price we humans routinely pay for ignoring the tremendous potential that lies untapped in the neural processing of all of those humans who remain outside of our present intellectual and spiritual circles of favor--all of those we ignore as disposable ones.

As we frantically scan the Earth in order to locate and retrieve the ever more limited reserves of oil and coal to power the machines that provide some small subset of us with transportation, comfort and light, we routinely overlook the tremendous potential that lies in the experience of those who live outside of the bubble of material wealth we call "the first world."

Though we fancy ourselves to be well-educated, most of us are quite ignorant of what lies outside of our immediate circle of concern. Our lack of understanding filters down to the attitudes of our students.

In the end, we may find that it was in one of those lost places--among the ones we have routinely considered disposable and "backward"--that the answers that we desperately seek had long lain dormant waiting to be unearthed by eyes that could see.

We exist in a time when we have unprecedented access to the insights and dreams of the other inhabitants of our planet, yet we continue to act as though nothing has changed. There is a given quantity of what I like to think of as the "human
neural mass" on the planet at any given point. How we care for and develop that most precious resource and make use of the creative products of its processing activities may determine whether we endure as a species or suffer the fate of many others.

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In Print

Research Assistant Professor Yinan Yuan (SFRES), collaborated with scholars from the University of Georgia (formally Michigan Tech scientists) to publish, "Alternative splicing and gene duplication differentially shaped the regulation of isochorismate synthase in Populus and Arabidopsis," in "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA." 106: 22020-22025 (2009). Co-authors include: Chung J-D, Fu X, Johnson VE, Ranjan P, Booth SL, Harding SA, Tsai C-J.