Walk on Water, Get Your Science Geek On

At a jam-packed Washington Convention Center this weekend, thousands and thousands of youngsters will get sticky feet and tongues discovering how much fun science and engineering can be. They’ll be dashing through ooblek and slurping liquid nitrogen ice cream at the Michigan Tech Mind Trekkers booths at the USA Science & Engineering Festival in Washington, DC, April 15-17.

Mind Trekkers, made up of Michigan Technological University student volunteers, is the national science and engineering expo’s official Traveling Festival. They’ve performed their interactive demos at the previous three USA Science and Engineering Festivals and at major science shows throughout the country, including the Boy Scout Jamboree and Destination Imagination.

So about that ooblek. It’s a mixture of water and cornstarch. Known as a non-Newtonian fluid, it acts like a liquid when it’s sitting still but a solid when pressure is applied to it. That means you can run right across it, getting only slightly sticky feet, but if you stop, you sink—and stick.


Read the full story.

Spring Fling Outside Today

Michigan Tech's annual Spring Fling is outside today. Sponsored by the Memorial Union Board, the student-run event features activities, games, giveaways, food, music and even a motorcycle thrill show. Organizers announced Wednesday, that due to a forecast of sunshine and pleasant temperatures for today, Spring Fling will be held outside on the main campus. 

The Hours for Spring Fling are noon to 4 p.m.  At 1 and 3 p.m. there will performances of the Sick Air FMX freestyle motocross stunt performance team. The performances will be held in Parking Lot 27 between the Administration Building and the Memorial Union Building. The show is hosted by the Full Throttle Motorcycle Club. Many student organizations will have booths throughout the campus. 
For more information, visit the MUB Board Facebook page.

Payroll Review Sessions

Payroll Services is offering two Standard Practice Guide Review and general payroll question and answer sessions on Wednesday, May 4. The first session is from 11 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. and the second session is from 1 to 1:45 p.m
The Payroll Services Standard Practice Guide outlines standard payroll procedures and internal controls that should be applied by all University departments for paying employees.
In these sessions, the guide will be reviewed and payroll related questions will be answered. Timekeepers and department administrators are encouraged to attend.
Click here to register.

SURF Recipients

The Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program will fund 21 students from across the University with funds from the office of the Vice President for Research. Previous SURF awards have included Goldwater Scholarship and NSF Graduate Research Fellowship recipients. Since 2002, SURF students have co-authored 66 peer reviewed publications. This year's recipients, project titles and advisors are listed online.

Continuous Improvement Connection

"Employee Engagement Poor, But Not in Retreat," states Jon Miller for Gemba Academy's blog on March 28. He goes on to discuss how $500 million dollars every year is lost due to low employee productivity and statistically only one out of every three U.S. employees are engaged while working. The other two thirds of the national workforce hate their job, are actively disengaged and aren't dedicated to the work they are doing. However, we can change this.

In the Office of Continuous Improvement, we use Lean principles and culture to create an environment where people are actively engaged and work together to get things done. Our employees aren't afraid to speak up, pitch ideas or put forth the extra effort to succeed. This is because Lean's number one rule is "Respect for People." Without fear of negative consequence for different ideas or mistakes, work communities can really thrive. Using continuous improvement as inspiration, your department or office can do the same and change the type of energy with which your employee's work.

Testing the Core Campus Computer Lab Image for Fall 2016

Michigan Tech IT is prepared for faculty, teaching staff and graduate students to begin the process of testing software applications for the Fall 2016 Campus Core Computer Lab Image.

The test machines are located in the Wireless Lounges (listed below). In May, IT will begin installing the new software to campus computer labs, and it is important for all software packages to be tested for accuracy to avoid problems later.

For Windows Stations:

  • The operating system is Windows 10.

  • The majority of software packages are installed, but the final image will likely include additional software.

  • The work stations with the new image are labeled with a sign that identifies the station as having the Fall 2016 software.

  • The current list of installed software packages is available here.

For Linux Stations:

  • With the exception of Matlab, Abaqus and Antelope, all software packages are installed and available to test.

  • Updated information for these three packages is here.

For Mac/Apple Stations:

  • IT is working with Humanities and Visual and Performing Arts to test this image.

Contact it-help@mtu.edu with any feedback regarding the new lab image. Your participation in this process is greatly appreciated.

Windows Testing Locations: Chem Sci B10, Chem Sci 717, Dillman 209, EERC 318, Fisher 232, Forestry 139, R.L. Smith (MEEM) 125, M&M U202/203

Linux Testing Locations: Rekhi 113/113a, Rekhi 114, Library Red Zone (Computer 1-6), Guardian.it (after spring semester)

APMP Students Attend Forum in NYC

Four students from the School of Business and Economics  Applied Portfolio Management Program traveled to New York City for the Quinnipiac Global Asset Management Education Forum earlier this month.  

The two-and-a-half day experience provided students and faculty from 47 states and 36 countries the opportunity to interact with industry leaders while learning the best practices in investment management.

Zachary Bedell, Matthew Mateer, Kendra Rasner and Dallas Bond traveled by car from Houghton to attend the forum.

The forum included key note presentations, interactive sessions, and networking opportunities. Rasner even had the opportunity to close the Nasdaq alongside other students attending the forum.

Advanced Project Management Team Wins PMI Competition

Each year Michigan Tech's OSM4200 Advanced Project Management course competes in the West Michigan Chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI) competition in Grand Rapids.

This year's project plan was based on improving the health of children ages 5-18 years in the State of Michigan. Michigan Tech Team B placed third out of 13 teams in THE Project 2016 project management plan competition on Monday held in Grand Rapids. The team's mentor was Shawn Rathbun, an alumni of Michigan Tech. Dana Johnson, professor of Supply Chain and Engineering Management was the team's Project Champion and Faculty Advisor.

The team members were:
Erika Tenizbaeva, Undergraduate Student - Management major with concentration in Supply Chain and Operations Management

Kwang Suthijindawong: Undergraduate Student - Management Information Systems and Operations & System Management majors

Syed Awn Muhammad Jafri: Graduate Student in Electrical Engineering

Karan Gujarathi: Graduate Student in Mechanical Engineering
Cody Waffle: Undergraduate Student - Engineering Management

This is the fifth year of the competition. Michigan Tech is the only University to place at least one team in the top four for all five years. This year's team was awarded $2,000. Visit the site to learn more about the competition.

A. E. Seaman Mineral Museum Special Offer for Graduation

The A. E. Seaman Mineral Museum welcomes Michigan Tech students and their families to visit a nationally and internationally recognized mineral museum and one of the great mineral museums of North America.

Admission fee is regularly waived for Michigan Tech students and Michigan Tech employees and their professional guests. To celebrate Michigan Tech graduation, the museum is also waiving the admission fee for student's family members that accompany them during finals and graduation week. The museum offers a variety of Earth-focused gifts for graduation and is offering a 20 percent discount on all bookends.

Come celebrate Michigan Tech graduation at the museum, the "Gem" of Michigan Tech.

Register for Family Fun Day

Family Fun Day is scheduled for Saturday, May 14. A flyer detailing the activities is available to view online. Register here as soon as possible.


Jason Sterkenburg, a PhD student in Applied Cognitive Science and Human Factors, will present at ACSHF forum from 2 to 3 p.m. Monday, April 18 in Meese 109. 

We conducted a pilot study to explore the potential of sonically-enhanced gestures as controls for future in-vehicle information systems (IVIS). We developed four concept menus (2 dimensional grids) using a LEAP Motion and Pure Data: (1) 2x2 with auditory feedback, (2) 2x2 without auditory feedback, (3) 4x4 with auditory feedback, and (4) 4x4 without auditory feedback. Seven participants drove in a simulator while completing simple target-acquisition tasks using each of the four prototype systems. Driving performance and eye glance behavior were collected as well as subjective ratings of workload and system preference. Results from driving performance and eye tracking measures strongly indicate that the 2x2 grids yield better driving safety outcomes than 4x4 grids. Subjective ratings show similar patterns for driver workload and preferences. Auditory feedback led to improvements in eye glance behavior as well as subjective ratings of workload and preference. Discussion of results and future works will be covered in this presentation.


Today's Social Sciences Brown Bag Discusses Keweenaw Time Machine

Join Don Lafreniere (SS) and Sarah Scarlett (SS) in an interactive brown bag talk "Keweenaw Time Traveler: Adventures in Collaborative Spatial Research and Teaching" at noon today in AOB 201.

The project just received a large multi-year grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. This talk will outline the progress to date on the construction of the Historical Spatial Data Infrastructure (aka- Time Machine) and the planned activities for the next several years.  

Discussions will include how you can use the Keweenaw Time Traveler in your research and teaching on both historic and contemporary topics in the Keweenaw, with examples from their team teaching.


Today's C-Cubed Menu

Chicken Piccata 
Roasted Bell Peppers, Broccoli and Squash  (VGF) 
Radiatore with Pesto Cream Sauce (VGF) 
White Bean Salad with Tomatoes  (VGF)  

V—Vegetarian  GF—Gluten Free  VGF—Vegetarian/Gluten Free


Geoseminar—Erika Vye

The next Geoseminar will be held from 4 to 5 p.m. today (April 15) in Dow 610. Erika Vye will present "Connecting People to Abiotic Nature: The Art of Interpretation." All are welcome.


Indian Food at Khana Khazana

Khana Khazana will be served from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. today in the Memorial Union Food Court. Cost for the full meal is $7.25 and includes a fountain drink. 
Today, Indian cuisine will be served:
  • Chicken Masala: Spicy chicken curry with a creamy, spiced, orange-colored sauce
  • Navartan Komar: Indian vegetable curry with nuts, paneer cheese and selected vegetables
  • AlooTikki: North Indian snack made of boiled potatoes, onions and various spices
  • Gajar Ka Halwa: A sweet dessert pudding made of carrot and sweetened condensed milk



SFRES Research Scientists will be discussing their research at our SFRES Friday Forum at 3 p.m. today (April 15) in Forestry G002. A reception will follow


Spring Football Game Tomorrow

The Michigan Tech football team will hold its annual Spring Game at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 16 at Sherman Field.

The 89-player Tech roster will be split into two teams – Black and White – for the game, which will be played with four 15-minute quarters. A running clock will be used for the contest, except in the final three minutes of the second and fourth quarters. Admission to the spring football game is free.


Annual Charity Ball Hosted by Houghton-Hancock Rotaract Club at Michigan Tech

Don't miss this exciting opportunity to dress up and go to a ball. The Houghton-Hancock Rotaract Club presents the "Phantom of the Opera Charity Ball" from 8 p.m. to midnight tomorrow (April 16) in the Rozsa Lobby.
All proceeds will go to 31 Backpacks, a local non-profit organization that provides food to kids from low income families. 

For more information, see original Tech Today article.


Open Campus Forum for Graduate School Dean Candidate

Pushpalatha Murthy will conduct an open campus forum from 11 to noon Tuesday, April 19 followed by discussion, in Fisher Hall 129. 

For additional information, see original Tech Today story, and view her CV here.


17th Annual Don Keranen Memorial Jazz Concert

49 years of great jazz and counting. Join Jazz Studies Program Director Mike Irish and the Michigan Tech Jazz ensembles for the 17th Annual Don Keranen Memorial Jazz Concert at 7:30 p.m. tonight (April 15) at the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts.

For information on this performance, see original Tech Today article


Film Board Presents "Kung Fu Panda 3"

This weekend, Film Board presents "Kung Fu Panda 3."

Today, April 15 — 5:30, 8:30, 11:30 p.m. 
Saturday, April 16 — 2:30, 5:30, 8:30, 11:30 p.m.
Sunday, April 17 — 2:30, 5:30 p.m.

Located in Fisher 135. Tickets are $3 and concessions are $1 each. 


Model UN Association at Michigan Tech

The Model UN Association at Michigan Tech is looking for an advisor who has Model UN experience or knowledge regarding the geopolitical scenario and can make this event happen at the Tech. They are also looking to fill the position of Secretary for the Model UN Association at Michigan Tech. Interested faculty members and students can email Sriram Paravastu for further information. 


KIP Seminar

Zixi Cheng, associate professor in the Burnett School of Biomedial Sciences at the University of Central Flordia, will present "Functional Changes and Anatomical Remodeling of Brain-Heart Connection Following Chronic Intermittent Hypoxia," at the KIP seminar from 3 to 4 p.m. today (April 15) in the ATDC building.

Visit the KIP Seminar Series webpage for a presentation abstract and biography.

CTL Tip of the Week

Submit Grades via Banner or Canvas and Coursetools

Instructors have two choices for submitting grades. They can be submitted electronically either via Canvas and CourseTools, or via Banner Self Service. Banner Self Service is the simpler of the two systems. Instructors can simply enter their grades directly into BanWeb, click submit and be finished. 

Grade submission through Canvas requires just a couple more steps. It is often most beneficial for larger classes, and for courses where grades are already entered in Canvas or another spreadsheet program. Grades need to be entered or uploaded in Canvas first, and then extracted from Canvas and submitted to Banner using the Grade Wizard on “Coursetools.” Those who have the correct letter grades for their students in their Canvas Total column can choose that column in the first step of the Grade Wizard by choosing ‘final_grade’ from the Change Canvas Grade Book Column menu (click here for directions), so there’s no longer any need to copy scores out of the Total column, unless you want to “tweak” them.

Information and instructions can be accessed on eLearning’s Grade Submission Information & Resources page. Instructors and instructional staff can also attend one of the two grade submission workshops, and as always, can contact support, access online guides and tutorials, get hours and location for eLearning Walk-In Hours, and more on Canvas One Stop. The CTL Tip of the Week is brought to you by the William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL).

In Print

Professor Iosif Pinelis (Math) published a paper "Optimal-order Bounds on the Rate of Convergence to Normality in the Multivariate Delta Method" in the Electronic Journal of Statistics 2016, Vol. 10, No. 1, 1001--1063. The paper is joint with Pinelis's former student Raymond Molzon. 

Job Posting

Staff and faculty job descriptions are available in the Human Resources Department.

For more information regarding staff positions call 7-2280 or email jobs@mtu.edu. For more information regarding faculty positions contact the academic department in which the position is posted.

IT Security Architect, Information Technology. Apply online.

Michigan Technological University is an Equal Opportunity Education Institution/Equal Opportunity Employer, which includes providing equal opportunity for protected veterans and individuals with disabilities.  

On The Road

Ameya Narkar, a graduate student from the lab of Professor Bruce P. Lee (Bio Med), was invited to give a talk at the Adhesive and Sealant Council (ASC) 2016 Spring Convention and Expo held in New Orleans on February 18-20.

ASC is a North American trade association comprised of more than 130 U.S. companies in the adhesive and sealant industry. The title of Narkar's talk was "Moisture Resistant Smart Adhesive Based on pH Dependent Reversible Catechol-boronic Acid Complexation".