Generations of Discovery Campaign Update

Michigan Tech's Generations of Discovery Campaign seeks to raise $200 million by 2013.

Tech Today tracks the progress of the initiative with monthly announcements of gifts from individuals and from corporations and foundations.

In the month of October, there were 1,124 individual gifts totaling $1,691,973:

1,115 gifts ranged from $1 to $24,999 totaling $181,578

Seven gifts ranged from $25,000 to $249,999 totaling $463,395:
* 3 outright gifts of $50,000, $100,395, and $85,000
* 2 pledges of $125,000 and $25,000
* 2 planned gifts of $50,000 and $28,000

There were 2 gifts of $250,000 and above totaling $1,047,000:
* A planned gift of $542,000 for an endowed scholarship
* A planned gift of $505,000 for the MSE

The campaign total as of October 31, 2011 was $155,330,879.

Finding Engineering in Everyday Activities

by Jillian Schwab, student writer

Does your child build structures with Lego bricks? Has she ever used rocks to try to change the flow of a stream? Does he like mixing together various food concoctions? Does she like taking things apart and then trying to put them back together? Has your child come up with a new way to organize toys or solved a computer glitch?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, your child might have the making of a future engineer.

How can you find out if engineering belongs in your child's future? One good way is to attend a Family Engineering Night. These are hands-on events designed to engage elementary school children and adults in learning engineering through teamwork, discovery, creative problem solving and fun.

"Kids are natural problem solvers," says Professor Neil Hutzler, of the civil and environmental engineering department, who cofounded the Family Engineering program. "But they don't often think of engineering as a career option. They think it's all math and science, when it's really more about finding creative solutions."

Hutzler and Joan Chadde, K-12 education and outreach program coordinator of the Center for Science and Environmental Outreach, began developing the Family Engineering program in 2008 as an outgrowth of the popular Family Science Night program that the Center has delivered to elementary schools across the western UP since 1997.

With a $1.6 million grant from the National Science Foundation, Family Engineering has now become a nationwide initiative, and Hutzler and Chadde have coauthored the "Family Engineering Activity and Event Planning Guide," along with two partners, the Foundation for Family Science and Engineering and the American Society for Engineering Education. The goal: to inspire Family Engineering events everywhere.

"There are many fun programs and activities getting kids interested in science, but almost nothing for engineering for elementary children," Hutzler explains. "We're trying to get the word out there."

The global demand for engineers is continuing to grow, but the number of new engineers graduating from US universities is shrinking, Hutzler points out. In a 2008 survey by the American Society for Quality, 85 percent of surveyed children ages 8 to 17 were not interested in engineering as a future career, and only 20 percent of surveyed parents had encouraged their children to explore engineering.

Children's ideas about different career fields start to form during elementary school, and the fields they look into are closely related to what their parents encourage. One of the goals of the Family Engineering program is to help parents learn along with their children, giving them a better idea of what engineers do and motivating them to encourage their children to consider engineering.

Family Engineering events can be held at schools, libraries, museums and community centers, and activities can be led by educators, professional engineers, college engineering student chapters, classroom teachers and even parents. "They're really popular," Hutzler says. "We've gotten up to 150 to 200 people at a single event."

The events start with small, self-guided "opener" activities that families can start working on as they arrive, such as wrapping various materials around the end of a paper towel tube to see which ones amplify sound best, counting the number of erasers that can be supported by a flat paper bridge versus an arched one, or playing with squares and triangles to see which shape is sturdier.

After families work on the openers, the group reconvenes for a short icebreaker activity. For example, a facilitator might ask: "Has anyone here ever done any engineering?" The answer is usually no. "How about inventing your own recipe?" That's chemical engineering. "What about building structures with Lego blocks?" You might have a future as a civil engineer.

Next comes a longer project exploring either a single field of engineering or general concepts that influence all of engineering, such as teamwork and organization. The activities get families working together to solve a simple engineering problem, ranging from mining cookies for chocolate chips to designing aerodynamic paper rockets.

The activities, which are easy and use common, inexpensive materials, are designed so that parents can easily do them at home with their children. "The Family Engineering Activity and Event Planning Guide," published in June 2011, is available for purchase in English or Spanish editions from the Family Engineering website.

"It's traditional to encourage only the kids who are good at math and science to become engineers," says Hutzler. "We want to get away from that. We want to show kids that engineering is something they already know and love, and that math and science are simply the tools that will help them do it."

Anyone interested in hosting a Family Engineering event should contact Hutzler or Chadde at the Center for Science and Environmental Outreach.

* * * * * *

There is a Family Science and Engineering Night scheduled for 6 to 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 1, at the Houghton Elementary School. For more information, call the school at 482-0456.

Know Any Interesting Grads Walking at Commencement?

by Marcia Goodrich, senior writer

Commencement is a perfect opportunity to get good publicity for our students and the University. Local reporters attend the ceremony and are eager to interview graduates about their experiences at Tech and their plans for the future. If the graduate is from the Keweenaw or the UP, so much the better, since the reporters like to interview students from the local area.

If you know any interesting graduates with a good story to tell who will attend Midyear Commencement, please let me know. Send their names, some information about what makes them interesting, and contact information if you have it to me, Marcia Goodrich, at . Thanks for your help!

Reminder: Blood Drive

There will be a blood drive held by the UP Regional Blood Center from noon to 6 p.m., today, in Memorial Union Ballroom B.

If you have not donated in the past eight weeks, stop in. No appointments are needed. Snacks and refreshments will be available to donors.

For more information, contact Counseling and Wellness Services at 487-2538 or at .

Reminder: Make a Difference Award Nominations are Due

Nominations for Staff Making a Difference Awards will be accepted until 4 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 30, in the Financial Aid Office.

Staff Council is coordinating the awards, which include the Rookie Award, Serving Others, Outstanding Supervisor, Innovative Solutions and Creating Community Connections.

More information about the awards and nomination forms are available at the Staff Council website.

Each award recipient receives $500 (less applicable deductions). "Please nominate a deserving coworker for one of these awards," Staff Council organizers said.

If you have any questions, contact Colleen Erva at 487-1669 or at .

Survey Addresses Research Productivity

The Senate Research Policy Committee and the Vice President for Research are seeking input regarding measures that might help researchers be more productive.

The anonymous survey results will be organized by the Senate Research Policy Committee and then provided to the Vice President for Research, who will respond to the suggestions. The results will also be made available to Tech's research community. All responses will be considered, but it is not guaranteed that all issues can be addressed, or how quickly they can be addressed.

There are two open-ended questions that will yield valuable feedback about what is stopping you from being more successful in research productivity. The more specific you are in your responses, the better.

To access the survey, see Research Productivity.

Please reply by Friday, Dec. 16.

For more information, contact Dave Reed, VP for Research, or Brian Barkdoll, chair, Senate Research Policy Committee.

KSO Presents "Synthetic Symphony"

submitted by Bethany Jones, marketing manager, Rozsa

What if you chose your favorite movements from your favorite symphonies and glued them together to create your own musical collage? The Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra does just that with its performance of "Synthetic Symphony," at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 3, at the Rozsa.

The KSO embarks on an orchestral adventure featuring Mozart, Liszt, Tchaikovsky and Dvorak.

The performance also commemorates the 200th anniversary of Franz Liszt's birth (1811) with music from his macabre "Faust Symphony."

Don't miss this thrilling symphonic tour of the seductive, charming and sublime music by the great classical masters.

General Admission is $15; Michigan Tech students are free.

To purchase tickets, call 487-2073, go online at , or visit SDC Ticketing Operations 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday–Friday; 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday; and noon to 8 p.m., Sunday. The Rozsa Box Office is closed during regular business hours and will only open two hours prior to showtime.

For more information, contact Bethany Jones at 487-1836 or at .

Register for Winter Craft Bazaar

The Apartments Residence Council Winter Craft Bazaar (formerly the Tech Wives' Bazaar and the DHRC Christmas Bazaar) is accepting crafters' registration through Wednesday, Nov. 30. The event will take place from noon to 6 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 4, in the SDC Wood Gym.

The registration form can be found at Bazaar. Those on campus may turn in their registration at the Housing and Residential Life Office in Wads 153.

The recommended donation for entry is a nonperishable food item or $2. All crafters' registration fees, food and money collected will be donated locally.

For more information, contact Laura Williams, Housing and Residential Life, at 487-2682, or at .

First Friday Social

Faculty, staff and graduate students are invited to attend the December First Friday University Social from 4 to 6 p.m., Dec. 2, at the Portage Lake Golf Course Par and Grill. Complimentary soda and snacks will be served. There will be a cash bar.

The School of Technology is this month's departmental sponsor. Plan to come and mingle with your colleagues and learn what the School of Technology is working on.

First Friday University Socials began in 2006 to provide a casual setting for members of the campus community to get together informally, share their work and get to know each other. Such informal gatherings often lead to more productive work relationships and an appreciation for diversity.

In an effort to increase the effectiveness of the initiative, this academic year will continue to feature departmental partners who will sponsor each month's event. The Vice President for Research will host the next social on Friday, Feb. 3, 2012.

Registration for Winter Community Programs and Skating Programs Begins

Registration for the winter session of skating programs will begin on Thursday, Dec. 1. Learn to skate classes, skate-up program, figure skating dance and stretch and the adult skating workshop will all be offered again.

Register for programs online at Community Programs, over the phone by calling 487-2073, or in person at the SDC Ticketing Operations. If you are taking advantage of any discounts, such as TechFit, SDC Membership or sibling discounts, you must register at the SDC Ticketing Operations.

In a continuing effort to offer the best service and value, your opinion of the program(s) you or your child participated in during the last session is appreciated. Your comments and suggestions will assist in identifying both positives and negatives in each program. As a result, adjustments can be made to provide the best experience for you and your family.

Take a moment to fill out the Online Survey.

Feel free to make any additional comments that may be helpful in evaluating the program(s).

The informational brochure can be found at Winter Session.

If you would like to see a particular program or activity added, contact Jada Gullstrand at 487-2975 or .

Winter Family Fun Night

What can you do with your family to celebrate winter and nature? Enjoy a fun evening together making nature crafts for the holidays and taking a night hike at the Nara Nature Center and Park.

The activities will be offered from 6 to 6:45 p.m. and again from 6:50 to 7:30 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 6.

Indoor activity: Families can make ornaments from birch bark and other natural materials to take home. Activity stations will be set up for K-6. All materials will be provided.

Outdoor activity: A naturalist will lead a moonlit hike on the Nara nature trails (on snowshoes, if needed).

What to Bring: Child and adult snowshoes will be provided while supplies last. Families are encouraged to bring their own snowshoes, if they have them. Dress warmly.

The event is cosponsored by the Western UP Math and Science Center and the Michigan Tech Center for Science and Environmental Outreach.

To preregister, contact Beth Squires at 487-3341 or at .

For more information, contact Joan Chadde at 487-3341 or at .

Hoyt Earns GLIAC Player of the Week Honor

by Ian Marks, assistant director, athletic communications and marketing

GLIAC announced that junior Sam Hoyt was named the GLIAC Women's Basketball North Division Player of the Week.

Hoyt averaged 17.5 points, 4.0 rebounds, 3.5 assists, and 2.5 steals per game on her way to earning the Radisson Roseville Classic MVP award. Hoyt led Michigan Tech to a 2-0 record in the tournament that was hosted by Concordia-St. Paul. She tallied nine points, five assists, four steals, and two blocks in the 62-52 victory against Minnesota-Crookston. In the 66-52 win over Concordia-St. Paul, Hoyt set career-highs in points (26) and rebounds (6) and shot 8-16 from the field and 6-6 from the foul line.

Sports in Brief

by Wes Frahm, director, athletic communications and marketing

What's Happening This Week

Tuesday, Nov. 29

Huskies Drive Time, 7:30-8 a.m. on WKMJ Mix 93.5 FM
Cager Club Luncheon, noon (Huskies Club Suite, MacInnes Student Ice Arena)

Friday, Dec. 2
Blue Line Club Luncheon, noon (Blue Line Room, MacInnes Student Ice Arena)
Hockey hosts Minnesota Duluth, 7:07 p.m. (Live Radio, Mix 93.5 FM)

Saturday, Dec. 3
Nordic Skiing at NMU Wildcat Challenge (weather permitting)
Women's Basketball hosts Northern Michigan, 1 p.m. (Live Radio, Mix 93.5 FM)
Men's Basketball hosts Northern Michigan, 3 p.m. (Live Radio, Mix 93.5 FM)
Hockey hosts Minnesota Duluth, 7:07 p.m. (Live Radio, Mix 93.5 FM)

Sunday, Dec. 4
Nordic Skiing hosts Huskies Challenge (weather permitting)

All times Eastern; home events are italicized.

Last Week's Results

Hockey (8-5-1, 5-4-1 WCHA)
Nov. 25--at St. Lawrence 3, No. 18 Michigan Tech 2
Nov. 26--No. 18 Michigan Tech 3, at St. Lawrence 1

Women's Basketball (4-1, 0-0 GLIAC)
Nov. 25--No. 9 Michigan Tech 62, Minnesota-Crookston 52 (at St. Paul, Minn.)
Nov. 26--No. 9 Michigan Tech 66, at Concordia-St. Paul 52

Men's Basketball (2-3, 0-0 GLIAC)
Nov. 22--UW-Parkside 73, at Michigan Tech 72
Nov. 25--Michigan Tech 68, Southwest Minnesota State 61 (at Bemidji State)
Nov. 26--at Bemidji State 63, Michigan Tech 58

Nordic Skiing
Nov. 23-26--Michigan Tech men and women at West Yellowtone Super Tour (no team scores)

Top News of the Week

Hockey Back at Home to Face Defending National Champs

After a 13-day road trip that covered more than 9,000 miles, the hockey team returns to home ice this weekend. The Huskies host defending national champion Minnesota Duluth at 7:07 p.m., Friday and Saturday, Dec. 2 and 3. Tech's last home series was Nov. 4-5 vs. Minnesota State. The Black and Gold are 6-1-1 at the Student Ice Arena this season.

Hoyt Named MVP at Concordia-St. Paul
Sam Hoyt scored a career-high 26 points Saturday, Nov. 26, and 35 points for the weekend on her way to being named Radison Roseville Classic Most Valuable Player. The Huskies won both of their games at the event, including a 66-52 victory over host Concordia-St. Paul after trailing by 11 at half of that game. The Tech women's basketball team brings a 4-1 record into its conference opener against rival Northern Michigan at the SDC Gym Saturday, Dec. 3.

Men Ready for GLIAC Opener after Tough Early Schedule
The men's basketball team presently sits at 2-3 after playing five tough non-conference Division II opponents to start the season. The squad's three losses have come by a combined seven points, including a pair of one-point setbacks. The Huskies will open their GLIAC schedule on Saturday, Dec. 3, vs. arch rival Northern Michigan.

Nordic Skiers See First Action
A small group of Nordic skiers opened the 2011 season at the West Yellowstone Super Tour. Rachel Mason and Alice Flanders both turned in top-30 performances during the event.

Cager Club and Blue Line Luncheons Scheduled for This Week
The first of three 2011-12 Cager Club Luncheons is set for noon Tuesday, Nov. 29, in the Huskies Club Suite of the Student Ice Arena. Basketball head coaches Kevin Luke and Kim Cameron are the featured speakers. The third of six Blue Line Club Luncheons will be at noon, Friday, Dec. 2, in the Blue Line Room across from University Images in the Student Ice Arena. Both events are open to the public.

ECE, CCSR Seminar

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering and the Center for Computer Systems Research will host a seminar by Jonathan Cohen, manager of Emerging Applications, Content and Technology Organization at NVIDIA. Cohen will present "A Credible Path to Exascale" at 2 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 1, in ME-EM 112.

For more information, see ECE/CCSR Seminar.

ECE Seminar

Ron Chu, principal engineer of Transmission Operations and Planning, PECO Energy/Exelon Corp., will present "The Evolution of Transmission Planning in US Utility Industry" at 2 p.m., Friday, Dec. 2, in ME-EM 112. For more information, see ECE Seminar.

ME-EM Seminar

Assistant Professor Birsen Donmez, of the University of Toronto's Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering and the director of the Human Factors and Applied Statistics Laboratory, will present "Lane Changing and Lane Choice Across Different Age Groups Under Multiple Levels of Cognitive Demand" at 4 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 1, in ME-EM 112.

For more information on the ME-EM Graduate Seminar Series, visit ME-EM.

Presentation Addresses Alcohol Awarness

The Inter-Fraternity Council will host Adam Ritz, a radio/TV personality, who will speak about alcohol awareness at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 30, in Memorial Union Ballroom A. Ritz will report recent news stories of real people and their poor decisions that have had negative consequences.

This presentation was made possible with aid from the Parents Fund. For more information, see Adam Ritz.

Warrington Speaks about Innovative Teaching

The School of Business and Economics hosts Senior Lecturer in Accounting Anne Warrington for a brown bag lunch presentation at noon, Friday, Dec. 2, in AOB 101. Warrington will speak about "Accounting Student Consulting Project." The campus community is invited.

Physics Colloquium

Franco Wang, senior research scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, will present "Photonic Entanglement: From Polarization to Time-Energy" at 4 p.m., Thursday, Dec., 1, in Fisher 139.

For more information, contact Claudio Mazzoleni at 487-1226 or at , or Petra Hüntemeyer at 487-1229 or at .

Reminder: Sponsored Programs Holds Session on Cost Sharing

Sponsored Programs will host "Cost Sharing on Sponsored Projects" from noon to 1 p.m., Wednesday , Nov. 30. Location information will be provided at the time of registration, which ends at 5 p.m., today. Beverages and desserts will be available. Bring your lunch.

This session is designed as a follow-up to the Budgeting Workshop. If you did not attend that session, email Catherine Curto at for the materials.

This session will provide faculty, postdocs and research/program staff with an understanding of what cost share means to research proposals and awards.

Some of the topics covered will include:

* Cost Share Commitment
* Cost Share Management
* Cost Share Procedures/Requirements

To register for this session, see Cost Share.

For more information, or to request an additional session, contact Curto at 487-2225 or .

Biomedical Engineering Seminar

Chair Sean Kirkpatrick, of the Department of Biomedical Engineering, will present a seminar, "Singular Optics in Biomedicine: What Can Optical Phase Singularities and Topological Charges Tell Us about Dynamic Biological Systems?" at 3 p.m., Friday, Dec. 2, in M&M U113.

Grain Processing Seminar Series

The Department of Chemical Enginering will host Assistant Professor Feng Zhao, of the Department of Biomedical Engineering, who will present "Recreate Biomimetic Microenvironment for Regenerative Medicine Tissue Engineering of Scaffold-Free Small-Diameter Blood Vessel" at 10 a.m., Friday, Dec. 2, in Chem Sci 211.

For more information, contact Alexis Snell at 487-3132 or at .

National Geographic Film: "Megastructures: Extreme Railways"

A National Geographic film that features Pasi Lautala, director of Tech's Rail Transportation Program (RTP), investigates the 1,000 kilometer Qinghai-Tibet Railway, an extraordinary feat of engineering that crosses some of the planet's toughest terrain at high altitude.

The film and discussion, free of charge and open to the public (including refreshments), will be from 7 to 8:30 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 1, in Fisher 139.

The event is sponsored by the Railroad Engineering and Activities Club (REAC) and the RTP.

Steer Your Students to this Opportunity

Will Cantrell, coordinator for the Summer Undergraduate Research
Fellowship (SURF) program, will conduct a workshop on writing effective SURF proposals at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 30, in Fisher 130.

Students interested in applying for SURF funding are encouraged to attend. For details on the SURF application process, see SURF.

In Print

Associate Professor Joshua Pearce (MSE and ECE), with colleagues from the Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering at Queen's University, published "A Review of Solar Photovoltaic Levelized Cost of Electricity" in Renewable & Sustainable Energy Reviews 15, 4470-4482.

Pearce, with a colleague from the School of Environmental Studies at Queen's University, published "Barriers to Appropriate Technology Growth in Sustainable Development" in the Journal of Sustainable Development 4(6), 12-22.

New Funding

Amber Dessellier and co-PI Donald Williams, Counseling Services, have received $9,700 from Prevention Network for "Change Approaches to Prevent and Reduce Underage Alcohol Use on Michigan Tech's Campus and the Surrounding Community."

In the News

Professor Ted Bornhorst (GMES), director of the A. E. Seaman Mineral Museum, was interviewed and quoted in a front page Detroit Free Press story on mining in the UP. See Freep.