Phi Kappa Tau is Statue Winner


The winners have been announced in the Michigan Tech Winter Carnival Snow Statue Competition. This year's theme is "Snow Cascades Across the Decades."

For the ninth time in the last 10 years, Phi Kappa Tau captured the top prize in the month-long statue division. Their winning entry, constructed outside their house in Hancock, is "In the Snow it Shall Appear, A Town of the New Frontier."

This year there were three divisions in the month-long competition — men, women and co-ed. Prizes were awarded to the top three in each division. The top three scores among all the statues were placed in the "Overall Month Long " section. 

Second place in the overall section went to Tau Kappa Epsilon, 2015's winner and the only team other than Phi Kappa Tau to capture the top prize over the past decade. Their entry was "In This Icy Condition, We Mourn Prohibition." Both Phi Kappa Tau and Tau Kappa Epsilon competed in the men's division. 

Third place overall went to the top statue in the co-ed division, Sigma Tau Gamma and Theta Chi Epsilon for "Leaving the 80s High and Dry as We Hit '88 with Marty McFly."

Taking a look at the divisional results, following Phi Kappa Tau and Tau Kappa Epsilon in the men's division was Sigma Phi Epsilon with "The Keweenaw's Silver Lining is the Decade of Copper Mining."

In the women's division, Alpha Sigma Tau took the top spot with "In Tonight's Feature Presentation, A Phenomenon Sweeps the Nation. The 50's Tradition Captured in Snow, Where American Teenagers Love to Go."

Second place went to Delta Zeta for "A 60s Meal of Ice and Snow, Fills Your Belly When It's 10 Below." Delta Phi Epsilon took third place in the women's division for "Let's Have a Blast Through Michigan Tech's Past."

In the co-ed division, following Sigma Tau Gamma and Theta Chi Epsilon, in second place were the Four Wheelers of MTU with "Off-Road Upgrades Across the Decades." Third place went to Raptor and Armada. 

In the overnight competition, statues that began yesterday afternoon and were completed this morning, the top prize went to St. Albert the Great University Parish, followed by Concordia Student Mininstries. Strange Crew took third. 

The Michigan Tech's Huskies Pep Band won the Interactive Statue division. 

The winners of the statue competition, along with the overall Carnival winners, will be presented at the awards ceremony following the Sno Ball at 8 p.m. Saturday on the Rozsa Center Stage.

Lucia Gauchia Wins NSF CAREER Award

Energy storage can learn a lot from ecology—and that's what one engineer plans to do with her early career award grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF).

Batteries have a lot in common with fish. And flocks of birds. And maybe even herds of caribou and tundra landscapes.

Lucia Gauchia sees the connection. She has a dual appointment in electrical engineering and mechanical engineering as an assistant professor at Michigan Tech.

As the US looks to update its electrical grid infrastructure, Gauchia plans to help by learning more about how ecological systems can inspire better designs and scalability.

For her creative and in-depth interdisciplinary work, she earned a prestigious CAREER Award from NSF. The grant is $500,000 that covers five years of research.

Read the full story.

Win by Losing Wellness Challenge

Have you been trying to get healthier and lose weight? Employee Wellness and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan invite you to participate in "Win by Losing," a free, fun and healthy nine-week challenge open to Michigan Tech employees that can help you take personal responsibility for your health and reach your weight-loss goals.

Register today to be part of Michigan Tech's team. The official competition runs Feb. 27 through April 28. Participants will submit weekly weigh-ins to compete against other BCBSM group customers. You will also have access to a toolkit to help you meet your goals.

Contact Shannon Brodeur with questions.

Call for Proposals: Faculty Fellow

Applications are being solicited for the Faculty Fellow Program. The Faculty Fellow Program is sponsored by the Office of the Vice President for Research. The Program expands familiarity with sponsored program administration and strategic planning among the faculty, develops leadership capacity among the faculty and improves sponsored programs administration and strategic planning through faculty input.

Applications are due no later than 4 p.m. Thursday (Feb. 16) and must be submitted electronically per the guidelines.

For additional information, see Faculty Fellow Program.

For questions, email Cathy Jenich or Dave Reed.

Fans Can Get Involved in the Winter Carnival Hockey Series

Michigan Tech hosts its annual Winter Carnival hockey series this weekend at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena. The puck drops at 7:07 p.m. tonight and 5:07 p.m. tomorrow.

The MacInnes Cup is awarded to the team with the most goals on the weekend. The second overtime (the 3-on-3 overtime) will not count towards the total goals unless it breaks a tie on Saturday. The WCHA shootout will also only count if it needs to break a tie on Saturday. Friday's 3-on-3 overtime or shootout goals will not be tallied into the total.

Fans will have a voice in this weekend's MVP voting, along with working media in attendance. Fans can vote for their MVP choice using the poll that will be posted on Michigan Tech Hockey's Twitter account during the third period of Saturday night's game.

There will be special 50/50 drawings both nights. Friday's "Tanner Kero Special" will offer 67 tickets to the drawing for $20. Tanner wears number 67 for the Chicago Blackhawks. He has played 20 NHL games this season with four goals and four assists. Saturday's 50/50 drawing will start with a pot of $1,000 and include both of Saturday's basketball games. The winner will walk home with a minimum of $500.

Fans are encouraged to stay after Saturday's game for the presentation of the MacInnes Cup and the Winter Carnival MVP.

Second Saturday at the Michigan Tech Archives

The Michigan Tech Archives will be open tomorrow (Feb. 11) for Second Saturday. The reading room will be open from noon to 5 p.m. for research support and genealogy assistance. The next Second Saturday will be held on Saturday, March 11.

To celebrate Winter Carnival, the archives is featuring the history of the carnival in an exhibit on the first floor of the Van Pelt and Opie Library. The exhibit, "Winter Carnival: A Michigan Tech Tradition for 95 Years," will be on display throughout the month of February. Staff will also have Winter Carnival photographs and memories on display in the reading room during Second Saturday.

For questions about the archives and its services, call 7-2505 or e-mail

Dean's Teaching Showcase: Raymond Shaw

This week’s Dean’s Teaching Showcase recipient is Raymond Shaw from the Department of Physics, winner of the 2016 Michigan Tech Research Award. Shaw was selected by College of Sciences and Arts Dean Bruce Seely precisely because his efforts in the classroom forcefully demonstrate the unity of teaching and research and signal no necessary tension exists between these two core faculty responsibilities. 

Seely says "That past fall, the Physics Department honored Ray for the Research Award in the manner it had recognized several other research award recipients — assigning them to teach a large lecture class. In Ray’s case, this was PH 2200, which covered electricity and magnetism for 390 students. He discovered large classes requires 'one part professor and two parts theater director.'

"Fortunately, he enjoyed significant assistance from a demo crew that prepared attention-grabbing experiments suitable for classroom use, a dedicated assistant who managed iClicker content and online homework systems, the office staff that printed and organized 400 exam booklets every few weeks, and the physics learning center coaches who assisted students with homework and exams.

"At the end of the term, student evaluations ranked the class at 4.36 on the seven dimensions reported on the  evaluation form. This is a very good score for a large introductory class.

"Ray identified several keys to this success, including support from Physics faculty, John Jaszczak, Wil Slough and Bob Weidman, with extensive experience in large-lecture sections, who shared lecture materials and staging tips, and provided occasional pep talks. In addition, help from the testing center and IT staff members further confirmed that such courses are taught by a team, not just a professor. 

"When asked about his contributions to making this class work, Ray noted that because  big classes can seem impersonal, he 'took it as a challenge to let my students get to know me as a person.'

"He spiced up lectures with personal anecdotes related to the course, like his rapidly-flashing blinker (RC time constants) or electromagnetic phenomena in his research. Other times he used more random elements related to life in general. He once asked students to provide iClicker responses on possible ways of disciplining his son for breaking the TV. (Corporal punishment won, but he did not take that advice) His point — students respond when taught by faculty who are real people and who care about them. As one student commented, 'Every class was enjoyable due to the somewhat 'nerdy' humor followed by funny references to his son (absolutely hysterical).'

"But perhaps as important was Ray’s enthusiasm for the class. Students clearly recognized his passion and excitement about physics. One student said, 'Your enthusiasm for Physics is inspiring. It makes the lectures much more enjoyable.'  Another added, 'Your enthusiasm was great. You were always passionate and in a good mood.'

"This might not seem like rocket science, but teaching seems to work better in environments where faculty exhibit their enthusiasm about their field and show how they care about students and their learning."

Shaw will be recognized at an end-of-term luncheon with 11 other showcase members, and is now eligible for one of three new teaching awards to be given by the William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning this summer recognizing introductory or large class teaching, innovative or outside the classroom teaching methods, or work in curriculum and assessment.   


Sweets for Your Sweetheart

The campus bakery is offering handcrafted chocolate cakes with chocolate ganache icing snuggled in a heart-shaped tin topped with a chocolate candy heart. Only $4.50 each. Order yours today at 
Orders will be taken until 5 p.m. Sunday (Feb. 12). You may pick up and pay for your treats from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday (Feb. 14) at the Memorial Union North Coast Grill.

C-Cubed Week 5

C-Cubed lunches are offered from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays throughout the school year in the Memorial Union Alumni Lounge. 

Lebanese Lamb Kibbeh (GF)
Lebanese Lentils and Rice (GF, VE)
Cucumber Tomato Salad with Mint (GF, VE)

V — Vegetarian, VE — Vegan, GF — Gluten Free

Send any suggestions to Christina Fabian or fill out a feed-back form online.


African Beat Fundraising Dance Night

The African Student Organization will host "African Beat Fundraising Dance Night" Saturday (Feb. 18) to promote our big "Africa Night" event coming in March.

Doors to the Memorial Union Alumni Lounge for the Feb. 18 event will open at 8 p.m. and the music will stop at 11 p.m. With your ticket purchased at the door, you get your fill of pizza, drink and snacks, all while listening and dancing to great music from many different African countries.

In the News

The Detroit Free Press published a story about whether universities should weigh in on President Trump's executive order about immigration and international travel, leading with an interview of a Michigan Tech graduate student from Iran, Donna Fard.


The Detroit Free Press and numerous other news outlets reported on Governor Snyder's proposed budget, including a 2.5 percent increase in state funding for Michigan Tech.


College Recruiter, a website for college students, prospective college students and their families, quoted Steve Patchin, director of Michigan Tech Career Services, in an article titled "10 Tips for Getting an Internship." 


Science News, AZo Mining, International Business Times and many other science and geology news websites around the world reported on Michigan Tech alumni's discovery of three new uranium minerals.

New Funding

Alexander Kostinski (Physics/EPSSI) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $156,119 research and development grant from the National Science Foundation. The project is "Correlated Random Processes in Physical and Radar Meteorology."
This is the first year of a potential three-year project totaling $477,948.
Lucia Gauchia (ECE/AIM) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $500,000 research and development grant from the National Science Foundation. The project is "CAREER: An Ecologically-Inspired Approach to Battery Lifetime Analysis and Testing." This is a five-year project. (Read related story above).

Job Postings

Job Posting for Friday, February 10, 2017

 Staff and faculty job descriptions are available in the Human Resources Department. For more information regarding staff positions call 7-2280 or email

For more information regarding faculty positions contact the academic department in which the position is posted.

Research Engineer/Research Scientist,  Great Lakes Research Center. Apply online.


Senior Research Scientist/Engineer - Program Manager, Michigan Tech Research Institute. 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.