Students, Faculty Family Displaced by Apartment Building Fire

Early Friday morning, a fire in Hancock destroyed an apartment building, displacing seven Michigan Tech students and a research faculty member and his family. None of them was injured.

Michigan Tech's Incident Command Team met early Friday morning to identify and respond to the affected students' and faculty member's needs.

The University has helped all of them find alternative housing for the remainder of the semester. Counseling has been made available.

Student Leadership Awards Presented

The 23rd Annual Student Leadership Awards were held Friday in the Memorial Union Ballroom.

President's Award for Leadership was presented to Stuart Liburd, Jr., while Tyler Leverton was given the Provost's Award for Scholarship.

The Vice President's for Student Affairs Award for Service was won by Erin Richie.

The other individual and organization award winners were:

  • Exceptional Community Service Project – "Kemin Fena, Your Story, Our Story"
  • Exceptional Enthusiasm as a Student Leader – Martine Loevaas
  • Exceptional Leadership in Student Governance – William Lytle
  • Exceptional Program of the Year – Language Program, International Club
  • Most Improved Student Organization – Leaders in Continuous Improvement
  • Rising Star of the Year – Natalie McGrath
  • Student Employee of the Year – Eric Smith
  • Student Organization of the Year – Huskies Pep Band
  • Student Organization Advisor of the Year –  Michael Christianson (VPA)
  • Clair M. Donovan Award- Bradley Turner
  • Outstanding Future Alumni Award- Mackenzy Shega-Fox
  • Sorority Woman of the Year – Julie Karl
  • Fraternity Man of the Year – Joe Hurford
  • Sorority of the Year – Alpha Gamma Delta
  • Fraternity of the Year – Sigma Tau Gamma
  • Exceptional Graduate Student Leader – Erin Pischke
  • Exceptional Graduate Student Scholar – Wei Wei
  • Exceptional Graduate Mentor – Jessie Knowlton
  • Exceptional Staff Member– Jill Fisher
  • Percy Julian – Jimmie Cannon, Jr.

Jump Starting the Michigan Tech Recycling Program

Beginning this week, Facilities Management will pilot a program in Fisher Hall to "jump start" the recycling program.

"Michigan Tech disposes of approximately 1,000 tons of trash each year and recycles about 15 percent of that amount, give or take a few tons," according to Jay Meldrum, Executive Director of Sustainability. "I would like to see us increase that amount to 25 percent without significant cost increases," says Meldrum.

With cooperation from Facilities Management, the custodial staff, faculty, staff and student organizations a plan has been created to add recycling bins to Fisher Hall in select locations and add improved signage. Waste Management has recently agreed to allow glass bottles and jars as part of Michigan Tech's single stream recycling program and has provided the signage to make our program consistent to the current Houghton and Hancock plans implemented this fall. The Society for Environmental Engineers (SEEn) student organization has contributed money to purchase extra bins for Fisher Hall. The Alternative Energy Enterprise and the Green Campus Enterprise assisted in performing inventories of recycling containers in each building.

Meldrum also requests that faculty and staff assist with this project by emptying the small personal bins that they may have in their offices into the publicly located larger bins in common areas. This is the process that was put in place more than a decade ago. Though some buildings have deviated from this process, as increased recycling is introduced in each building, the original process will need to be followed. This assistance will help the custodians to concentrate on getting the larger bins to the loading docks while trying to limit any increased labor costs. From there, Facilities Management sends an army of students daily to collect and transport 95 gallon bins into recycle compactors outside of Dow, the Memorial Union Building, and Wadsworth Hall. Waste Management then collects the recycled material and transports recyclables to Eagle Waste in Wisconsin.

Improving our Diversion Rate (the amount we divert from landfills) is the measure that universities use to measure the success of their programs. Considering the challenges we face in our remote community, increasing our University's diversion rate will be a big step in making Michigan Tech more sustainable. With the success of this pilot, other buildings will be targeted for changes that will improve our overall University diversion rate. For more information, contact Meldrum.

Physics Colloquium Thursday

The next Physics Colloquium takes place at 4 p.m. Thursday (April 20) in Fisher 139. Manish Kashyap will present "Structure and Properties of Rare-Earth/Tranisition Metal Alloys and Perovskite Materials."

Permanent magnetic materials composed of rare-earth (RE) and transition-metal (TM) elements are technologically important due to their applications in health, communication and energy areas. In this presentation, Kashyap will discuss structure and properties of novel rare-earth magnets, R2Co17, RMn2 and MnBi with defects. In the second part of the talk, he will discuss organicinorganic hybrid lead halide perovskite solar cells which have been shown to have higher power conversion efficiency (PCE) of 20.1 percent.

Kashyap is an assistant professor in the Department of Physics, Kurukshetra University, India. He received his PhD in theoretical condensed matter physics from the Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee, India. At present, he is a visiting scientist at Ames Laboratory in Iowa.

Foundational English Summer Program

The Foundational English Program will take place May 8 through June 16. This program is designed for people who would like to learn English in order to become professionals in the community or eventually pursue a higher education. Graduate students' spouses or family members are welcome.

You may select individual courses (three hours a week) at $360 per course or all courses (12 hours a week) at $1,440.

Courses include listening and speaking, reading, writing and special topics. Through these courses, students will develop vocabulary and pronunciation skills, experience American culture, connect reading and writing, reinforce listening and speaking strategies, and practice English conversation daily. All courses are taught by highly-qualified and supportive ESL instructors.

If you would like to enroll in this program, contact Heather Deering at 7-2009.

Faculty and Staff Recognized by Fraternities and Sororities

On April 9, more than 320 students gathered for the 11th Annual Fraternity and Sorority Life Awards Ceremony held in the Memorial Union Ballroom.

In addition to the many student awards presented, Order of Omega, the Greek Life Honor Society that coordinates the awards, took the time to recognize some exceptional faculty and staff members. 

There are more than 560 students in fraternities and sororities at Michigan Tech, and Order of Omega wanted to emphasize that these awards were coming directly from the students. 

When writing a nomination for the Outstanding Faculty Award, students were asked to consider faculty who:

  • are dedicated to supporting students and helping them succeed academically
  • demonstrate a passion for teaching and/or research
  • utilize innovative teaching methods
  • promote academic integrity among students

When writing a nomination for the Outstanding Staff Award, students were asked to consider staff who:

  • are dedicated to supporting students and helping them succeed both inside and outside the classroom
  • demonstrate a passion for working with students
  • promote and inspire the Michigan Tech Values of Community, Scholarship, Possibilities, Accountability and Tenacity

 The following faculty and staff members were nominated by members of the Greek community and were recognized at the 2017 Fraternity and Sorority Life Awards Ceremony:


  • Evelyn Johnson  (HU
  • Scott Miers (ME-EM)
  • David Hand  (CEE)
  • Noel Urban  (CEE)


  • Laura Bulleit (Dean of Students Office)
  • Rochelle Spencer (Student Activities)

These nominations were written by individual students and were supported by an entire fraternity or sorority. In the end, the Outstanding Faculty Award was presented to Evelyn Johnson and the Outstanding Staff Award went to Laura Bulleit. 

Advisor of the Year was also awarded to a staff member, Heather Simpson (Wahtera Center). Congratulations to all of these faculty and staff members who were nominated and thank you for inspiring and motivating students.

A special congratulations to Jessie Stapleton, director of student activities, for winning the first-ever Unsung Hero Award. She was recognized for all of her hard work and dedication to the students in the Greek community.

White Slips by Black in Spring Football Game

Michigan Tech placekicker Evan Gornick helped send Team White past Team Black 10-7 in the annual Spring Game Saturday afternoon at Sherman Field. Gornick drilled a 33-yard field goal as time expired in the fourth quarter for the game winner.

"I think it was a great day to be a Husky," Head Coach Steve Olson said. "Our kids came out and played hard and competed. Obviously you could see the excitement at the end of the game and it meant something to them. I was very happy with the way we played and I thought there were some good plays on both sides of the ball. I was happy with some of the runs we had and the throws our quarterbacks made. For the most part, I thought our receivers did a good job catching the ball. We made some solid plays on defense as well which included a couple of sacks and an interception."

Team White struck first on Saturday by finding the end zone late in the first quarter to go up 7-0. The defense had stopped Team Black on a fourth and one play to take over at their own 48-yard line. Running back Andrew Rose shouldered the load on the drive with carries of seven, twelve, and one yards before breaking loose for a 32-yard touchdown run with 1:10 on the clock.

Team Black would tie the game up before halftime with a combination of solid defense and power football in the red zone. Defensive back Antwon Curtis setup the touchdown when he picked off a Jake Brown pass at the 28-yard line and returned it 23 yards down to the five. Eric Kostreva got the call on the next two plays to punch it into the end zone on the ground. The extra point by Austin Chmura made it a 7-7 contest with just over five minutes to go in the half.

The defenses dominated for the rest of the half and throughout the entire third and most of the fourth quarter. Following a punt by Black, White took over on their own 13-yard line with 7:10 left to go in the fourth frame. The offense was able to move the ball down the field to get in place for the game winning field goal.

Read the full story at

Men's Tennis Closes Out Season

The Michigan Tech men's tennis team closed the weekend and the 2017 season Saturday, falling at Northwood 9-0 in a Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference match.

Northwood (9-9, 5-3 GLIAC) stormed out of the gate with three straight 8-1 wins in the doubles portion of the contest to take a 3-0 lead going into singles play. Michigan Tech (1-12, 0-9 GLIAC) looked to regroup, starting with a No. 1 singles matchup between Mario Neto and Austin Woody. Neto stayed stride for stride with his opponent in both sets, but fell 6-3, 6-3 in each.

Tech's Ricardo Paes battled David Reinauer in the No. 3 spot of the lineup on Saturday.  Reinauer cruised to a 6-0 win in set one, but Paes regrouped during the break and nearly forced a tiebreaker with a strong set two performance. Reinauer ended up holding on for a 7-5 decision over Paes to secure the point for the Timberwolves, who went on for the 9-0 match win.

For complete match results and more on Huskies Sports visit


Campus Store Customer Appreciation Sale

Michigan Tech Campus Store and University Images would like to show their appreciation and thank you for your continued patronage by once again offering the annual Customer Appreciation Sale from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday (April 19).

Nearly everything in the stores will be 25 percent off. There is a great selection of sporting apparel, outerwear, school supplies and souvenirs. Clearance racks are full and career wear is still 75 percent off.


Community Discussion to Focus on Forest Ownership

Evan McDonald, executive director of the Keweenaw Land Trust, will present "Whose Forest is it Anyway? Why Forest Ownership Matters Now and in the Future." This talk will take place from 6:30 to 8 p.m. tomorrow (April 18) at the Carnegie Museum Community Room located on Huron and Montezuma in downtown Houghton.


Women of Tech Spring Social

Staff, faculty, students and retirees are invited to the Women of Tech Spring Social from 5 to 7 p.m. Wednesday (April 19) at the Alumni House.

This is an opportunity to talk about the Tech experience and network with each other. Light appetizers and beverages will be served. 

Let us know if you're planning to come by using this form.


Fundraiser for Syria Friday

Michigan Tech's Iranian community and the Muslim Student Association are organizing fundraising to support Syrian refugees.

The fundraiser will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, in the MUB Commons. Middle Eastern food, including baghlava, falafel and beef kabobs will be served. The full meal is $8 which includes a fountain drink. A vegetarian option is available. 

Campus Store Extended Hours

The Campus Store will be open from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. now through Friday (April 21).


Annual Steam Shutdown to Begin April 30

Noon Sunday, April 30 — Noon Friday, May 5 (tentative weather pending).

Buildings Affected: Admin, AOB, ROTC,  R.L Smith (MEEM), MUB, Chem, EERC, Library, Rehki, Dillman, Fisher, Dow, M&M, Walker, Rosza, DHH, Wads, McNair, Hillside Place, GLRC, Forestry, Ice Arena, SDC, Gates.

Read the original Tech Today story.


Facilities Management Annual Utility Outages

Facilities Power Outages May 3-5

  • 5 p.m. Wednesday, May 3 — 6 a.m. Thursday, May 4
  • 5 p.m. Thursday, May 4 —  6 a.m. Friday, May 5

Buildings Affected: Hillside Place, EERC, Daniell Heights, Lakeshore Center, DHH, ATDC, Wads, Dow, McNair, Rozsa, GLRC, Walker, Central Htg. Plant, Football Stadium/Lights, Facilities Bldg.

Buildings with power, but no internet or phone: Honors House, University Residence, Ski Hill, IT/Facilities Warehouse, First Merit Bank, AERB (Hancock).

Note that in most cases elevators, fume hoods, exhaust fans, ventilation equipment, normal lighting, plug­-in appliances and plug-­in equipment will not operate during the outage. Information Technology will turn off all network equipment in the affected buildings for these outages starting at 5 p.m. on the days of the outage. There will be several buildings that will have power but no phone or internet service. For more information, read the original Tech Today story.

New Funding

James DeGraff (GMES/GLRC) is the principal investigator on a project that has received a $27,500 research and development contract from the US Geological Survey. The project is "The Keweenaw Fault Geometry, Secondary Structures and Slip Kenematics Along the Bete Grise Bay Shoreline. This is a one-year project.

In the News

Michigan Tech is one of eight schools selected to participate in the AutoDrive Challenge. The competition is hosted by GM and SAE International; students will have three years to design, build and test a fully autonomous vehicle. Tech media has covered the story including Detroit Business, Engadget, Clean Technica, Hybrid Cars and other science blogs all around the world.


The Chronicle Journal of Thunder Bay, Ontario, published an article examining whether ancient toolmakers in our area were male or female. The article quoted Susan Martin (SS), who said tools unearthed in Keweenaw County could well have been made by women.


WLUC TV6 (NBC), WBUP TV10 (ABC), WJMN TV3/UP Matters and the Daily Mining Gazette all covered the Friday morning apartment building fire in Hancock that displaced seven Tech students and one research faculty member and his family.

IT Connect

Reminder About Using Respondus LockDown Browser

Michigan Tech IT has been working with the William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) on a software incompatibility issue. Due to the conflict with LANschool (a classroom management application), Respondus LockDown Browser is not available in the following rooms:
  • Dillman 101

  • Dillman 208

  • Dillman 211

  • GLRC B003

  • MEEM 120/121

Keep this in mind for approaching exams that need to be monitored. If you do plan to use these rooms, you will need to use LANschool to monitor your exams. The alternative is to schedule an exam in a dedicated testing center in which the Respondus LockDown Browser is available.

For more information regarding the use of LANschool or to schedule a testing center, click here.

You can always contact the CTL at or call 7-3000. For additional concerns, contact IT at or call 7-1111.

In Print

Steve Walton (SS) published an edited volume with colleagues form Canada and Australia on "Mathematical Practitioners and the Transformation of Natural Knowledge in Early Modern Europe." 

This collection of essays looks at how theory and practice intersected and affected one another in the "scholar-craftsman" debate surrounding the origins of the Scientific Revolution. The volume also includes a chapter by Walton on "military mathematical practitioners," the groups of 16th-century engineers that used mathematics to promote their status (if not always their actual technologies).

You can access the book here.