Michigan Tech Tops the State in Return on Investment

Michigan Tech's annual return on investment (ROI) — the payback in earnings compared to the cost of education — is the highest in Michigan and 24th in the nation, according to a report released by Payscale.com yesterday.

The report ranked Michigan Tech's annual ROI percentage at 10.1 percent, tied with Purdue University, California State University Maritime, San Jose State University and Weber State University.

Michigan Tech's 20-year net ROI was $625,000, tied with Cornell University. Payscale defines 20-year net ROI as the difference between the median pay of a college graduate with a bachelor's degree 20 years into a career, compared to the median pay of a high school graduate 24 years into a job, minus the cost of the college education. The Payscale report ranked Michigan Tech 46th in the nation in 20-year net ROI.

More than 1,800 colleges and universities were analyzed in Payscale's latest ROI report.

"Being number one in the state and in the top 50 nationally is significant, especially since Michigan universities have tuition that tends to be higher than the national average," said President Glenn Mroz. "It's higher because more than $1 billion in inflation-adjusted funding has been cut from the state's higher education since 2003," he explained.

Payscale.com is a data-based website that analyzes and reports on a variety of issues related to salaries and the cost of education.

Isle Royale Wolves: Winter Study 2017 Report Now Available

Researchers at Michigan Tech have released the annual Winter Study detailing updates on the ecology of Isle Royale National Park.

For the second year in a row, the island's wolf population remains a mere two. Moose have increased and the high number of calves and low predation rates suggest the population will continue to boom.

Release of the study marks the 59th year of monitoring wolves and moose on Isle Royale, the longest running predator-prey study in the world. Read more here.

Sparking Kids' Interest in Science and Engineering

As environmental groups prepare to celebrate Earth Day, and others concerned with science and research funding plan Marches for Science, Michigan Technological University’s Mind Trekkers are doing what they always do: putting on flamboyant science and engineering shows to spark young people’s interest in science. And major corporations whose names you know are asking them to do it.

Wednesday through Saturday (April 19-22), Mind Trekkers will be performing at the FIRST Robotics World Championships in Houston, Texas, in partnership with 3M. Thursday through Saturday (April 20-22), another Mind Trekkers team composed of Michigan Tech alumni will make liquid nitrogen ice cream and skewering balloons without popping them at Lockheed Martin’s Family Day at their world headquarters in Bethesda, Maryland.

On Saturday (April 22), a third Mind Trekkers team will partner with the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts in STEAM Punk. STEAM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics. Read the previous Tech Today Story.

The following week, sponsored by Dow Chemical Company, Mind Trekkers travels to the Philadelphia Science Festival. Read the full story

SBE Team Wins WMPMI THE Project 2017 Competition

The School of Business and Economics students, through the OSM4200 Advanced Project Management class, have participated for the past six years in the West Michigan Chapter of the Project Management Institute Project Plan Competition.

Michigan Tech is the only school to have placed in the top three all six years of the competition. Up until this year, Tech has not placed first. This year, one of the two teams placed first place and was awarded $5,000 for their success. The team name was "Turnip the Beet" and members were Patrick Koro, Beth Dorvinen, Lora Kositzky, Shea St. Cyr, Preeti Malik and Chester Winfield.

This year's competition case study was based on implementing a community garden program. Students complete four gates in the project providing a segment of a project plan until a complete plan is developed. There were nine teams competing from seven different schools. The team placed in the final three and ultimately won the top award by giving a presentation to the judges. The team advisor/faculty member is Shawn Rathbun, a Michigan Tech alum and adjunct faculty in the School of Business and Economics.

Design Expo Winning and Judging

Design Expo (formerly the Undergraduate Expo) held last Friday highlighted discovery-based, concept-to-finished product learning at Michigan Tech.

More than 1,000 students on enterprise and senior design teams showcased their work and competed for awards.

A panel of judges, made up of distinguished corporate representatives and Michigan Tech staff and faculty members, critiqued the projects.

Many projects were industry-sponsored. Students gained valuable experience through competition at Design Expo, as well as direct exposure to real industrial problems.

Learn more about this year's winning teams and read what judging at Design Expo is like.

Tech to Participate in AutoDrive Challenge

Michigan Tech is one of eight universities selected to participate in a new collegiate competition — AutoDrive Challenge — hosted by GM and SAE International.

Students competing in the challenge have been tasked with designing, building and testing a fully autonomous vehicle. They will start with a Chevy Bolt and outfit it with sensors, control systems and computer processors to successfully navigate an urban driving course in automated driving mode.

And they have three years to make it happen.

"It is an ambitious project, with an ambitious goal, and I couldn't be happier that we will be a part of it," says Dan Fuhrmann, the chair of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering.  Read the full story.

Physics Grad Student Headed to Los Alamos National Lab

Chad Brisbois is one of 53 graduate students in the US to earn a place in the Department of Energy's Office of Science Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) Program.

Brisbois, a physics PhD candidate is heading to the Los Alamos National Laboratory for several months later this year as part of the DOE program. He will collborate with researchers who run a specialized gamma-ray observatory called the High Altitude Water Cherenkov (HAWC) in Mexico. Read the full story.

Reminder from Payroll Services Update Mailing Address

With the end of the academic year approaching, many student employees will be relocating. These students are reminded to update their mailing address in Banweb to ensure receipt of paper paychecks, W-2s, 1042Ss and other University mailings. Electronic access to W-2s is currently removed when an employee's job ends. W-2 forms will be mailed to the mailing address on file in January, 2018.

Note, the mailing address is updated separately from the alumni mailing or home/permanent addresses.

Contact Payroll Services at 7-2130 or Payroll@mtu.edu if you need further assistance.

Houghton Standout to Continue Basketball Career As a Husky

Michigan Tech Women's Basketball Head Coach Kim Cameron announced the addition of Houghton High School's Sloane Zenner to the program for the 2017-18 season. Zenner recently signed her National Letter of Intent to join the Huskies as a student-athlete this coming fall.

"Sloane is a great addition for our team," Coach Cameron said. "Being from Houghton and playing for that program, we know we are getting a player who is disciplined and will be ready to work.  She will be a mismatch problem for other teams because of her ability to play inside and on the perimeter. We are looking forward to watching her progress into the college level."

Zenner prepped at Houghton High School where the 6'0" guard recorded 1,078 career points and helped lead Houghton to three district championships. She averaged 15.2 points per game, knocked down 56 percent of her shots from the field along with posting six rebounds and 3.8 steals per game this past season.

Read the full story and find out more about Husky sports at michigantechhuskies.com.

Campus Communicators Meets Tomorrow

With such a variety of audiences and so many ways to get to them, how can we keep it all together and accomplish our communication goals? Join Campus Communicators from 10 to 11 a.m. tomorrow (April 20) in Memorial Union B001.
Lisa Hitch from Electrical and Computer Engineering will highlight customers in academia and the many venues and vehicles used to reach them.
Chad Arney, Laurie Stark and David Holden from the Van Pelt and Opie Library will show how it can be done with the use of Lean processes and tools. This session will be followed by an open discussion on communication challenges and ideas, so bring yours and join the conversation.
Students, faculty and staff are welcome.

Retirement Social for Paul Buda

The School of Technology invites the campus community to a retirement social for Paul Buda from 2 to 4 p.m. Tuesday (April 25) in the Memorial Union Alumni Lounge.

Buda has introduced students to surveying in the School of Technology Surveying Engineering and Construction Management programs, as well as the Civil Engineering Department, for 35 years.

Join us in thanking him for providing an outstanding education to several generations of students, and to wish him well in his retirement. Refreshments will be served.

Lake Superior Celebration

The community is invited to the Lake Superior Celebration at Michigan Tech's Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC) from 6 to 8 p.m. tomorrow (April 20). The event is free, family-friendly and open to all.  

The Celebration will include informative exhibits by more than a dozen local agencies and organizations, fun hands-on activities for K-5 students including boat-making with natural materials, pollinator activities, a World Water Day art exhibit and displays and presentations by Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative (LSSI) school teams. In addition, there will be presentations about Geoheritage Interpretation in Local Schoolyards and the Keweenaw Time Traveler project.

Light refreshments, including trail mix, cake, lemonade and coffee, will be available. 

The event is sponsored by the Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative, Michigan STEM Partnership, Western U.P. Center for Science, Mathematics and Environmental Education, Michigan Tech Center for Science and Environmental Outreach, and the Great Lake Research Center.

For more information, contact Shawn Oppliger (482-0331) at the CCISD or Joan Chadde (7-3341) at Michigan Tech.

Read about the event here. Visit the Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative online or on Facebook.

Bon Voyage South Africa

The Rozsa Center welcomes the choirs of Michigan Tech which will present their year-end concert, “Bon Voyage South Africa,” at 7:30 p.m. Friday (April 21).

The concert will feature music that has been prepared for the Michigan Tech Concert Choir international tour to South Africa.  According to Choirs Director Jared Anderson (VPA), “The evening will include performances of sacred motets, African-American spirituals, American folk songs, music about the displaced as well as beloved songs from South Africa.  

In May, students and community members of the Concert Choir will spend twelve days in Johannesburg, Pretoria, Potchefstroom and Cape Town where they will sing four public concerts and two church services.”  

Tickets are on sale now, $13 for adults, $5 for youth and no charge for Michigan Tech students with the Experience Tech fee. Tickets are available by phone at 7-2073, online, in person at the Central Ticketing Office in the Student Development Complex or at the Rozsa Center Box Office. (Note the Rozsa Box Office only opens two hours prior to the performance).

Five Former Huskies on AHL Calder Cup Teams

Five former Michigan Tech hockey players are on AHL teams for the Calder Cup Playoffs that begin tomorrow. Chris Conner and the Lehigh Valley Phantoms play Pheonix Copley and the Hershey Bears.

Blake Pietila and the Albany Devils open up against the Toronto Marlies and Angus Redmond's San Diego Gulls matchup against Matt Roy's Ontario Reign.

Reid Sturos' Texas Stars and Jamie Phillips' Manitoba Moose didn't qualify for the playoffs.

Read the full story and find out more about Michigan Tech sports at michigantechhuskies.com.

SFRES Research Scientists and Awards

The School of Forest Resources and Environmental Sciences research scientists will present their research at this week's Friday Forum. The lecture will take place at 3 p.m. Friday (April 21) in the Noblet Forestry Building G002. A social will follow in the atrium from 4 to 5 p.m.

Glenn M. Larkin, senior research scientist, will present "Love and Early Decay Are Hard to Find." 

When wood is placed in an environment with sufficient fungi, moisture and thermal energy, decay is an eventual certainty. The question is how long will it take? Advanced stages of wood decay are easy to recognize and results in the removal and replacement of the item. This talk will focus on detection and quantification of early decay.

Joseph Shannon, research scientist, will present "EAB in Black Ash Wetlands: Impacts and Lessons from Simulated Infestation."

This talk will give an overview of the results from five researchers and illustrate how the individual research questions fit together to form the system-level response of wetlands.

ICC Distinguished Lecturer Series

The Institute of Computing and Cybersystems (ICC) will host Kalyan Perumalla from 3 to 4 p.m. Friday (April 21) in Rekhi 214. He will present a lecture titled "Effective Exascale Computing using Computational Cloning." Refreshments will be served.

Perumalla is a distinguished research and development staff member and manager in the Computer Science and Mathematics Division at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and an adjunct professor in the School of Computational Sciences and Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology. He founded and currently leads the Discrete Computing Systems Group at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

A full bio and abstract can be found online.

Register for Technology Day

Technology Day, sponsored by Staff Council, provides opportunities for staff to improve their technical skills and knowledge through technology training sessions. The sessions are led by Michigan Tech staff and provide development in a peer-to-peer environment.

This year there will be four sessions. Technology Day will be Wednesday, May 3. Register by Thursday, April 27.

Help Us Help You: IT Self Service

Presented by Matt Bryan (IT) from 9 to 9:50 a.m. and 2 to 2:50 p.m. in the Memorial Union Ballroom A1.

Interested in learning how to reset your own password, install software on your computer, add your own printers and many other commonly requested IT Services? Information Technology will share information about tools and resources available to the campus community for services such as how to setup mobile number recover for password resets, show you how to use the Customer Support Center to find instructions on how to connect to the VPN, how to add printers and how to install software yourself using the Software Center.

Beyond the Meeting Room

Presented by Stefan Hurthibise (IT) from 9 to 9:50 a.m. and 1 to 1:50 p.m. in the Memorial Union Ballroom A2.

Are you interested in learning more about what resources are available at Michigan Tech for web-conferencing? Let IT Classroom and Presentation staff help you redefine the meeting room with creative ideas on how to use GoToMeeting to facilitate meetings, interviews, thesis defenses and other online events. This session will include demonstrations.

Don't Take the Bait: Online Security Essentials

Presented by David Hale (IT) and Justin Store (IT) from 10 to 10:50 a.m. and 1 to 1:50 p.m. in the Memorial Union Ballroom A1.

Michigan Tech's Security Architect, Justin Store, will present practical information that you can use to keep your online information safe and secure from attackers. The presentation will cover a few key strategies that everyone should know including how to secure your accounts, how to verify a site is safe, how to manage your passwords and how to identify phishing attacks. The presentation will explain why each of these topics is important and also provide real-world examples that you can follow to make a meaningful improvement in your online security posture with minimal effort.

Step Up Your Social Media Game

Presented by Sarah Bird (UMC) and Ben Jaszczak (UMC) from 10 to 10:50 a.m. and 2 to 2:50 p.m. in the Memorial Union Ballroom A2.

Social media is a powerful way to tell Michigan Tech's brand stories. Adding photos and video to your social media presence enhances storytelling, increases engagement and grows fans and followers. This session will provide tips and tricks to create photography and video that will help you take your social media game to the next level. Bring your smartphone with you — this is a hands-on session.


ME-EM Graduate Seminar Speaker

The next ME-EM Graduate Seminar Speaker Series will be held at 4 p.m. tomorrow in EERC 103. Meredith Silberstein will present "Mechanics and Chemistry in Designing Polymers."

The coupling of mechanics and chemistry is an emerging field leading to innovative material design. This talk will cover two projects within Silberstein's  group — one towards utilizing mechanochemistry in polymers and composites, the other towards tailoring bulk polymers formed from assemblies of single chain polymer nanoparticles (SCPN).

Silberstein is an assistant professor and Mills Family Faculty Fellow in the Sibley School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Cornell University. She received her PhD in June 2011 from the MIT Department of Mechanical Engineering with a major in solid mechanics and a minor in energy. In 2017 she received the NSF CAREER award. 


Customer Appreciation Sale Today

The Michigan Tech Campus Store and University Images is showing their appreciation for your continued patronage by once again offering the annual Customer Appreciation Sale. The sale is  from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. today (April 19).

Nearly everything in the stores is 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.


University Senate to Meet Today

The University Senate will hold its last meetings of the academic year beginning at 5:30 p.m. today (April 19) in Dow 642. 

Meeting #593 is a special meeting for new and continuing senators who will, among other items, elect the officers for the 2016-17 academic year. View the agenda for meeting #593.

Meeting #594 starts immediately afterward and is the last official meeting for the current senators. View the agenda for Meeting #594.

Review the minutes of meeting #592.

Senators are responsible for making their constituents aware of the agenda for this meeting. Senators who are unable to attend should arrange for their alternates to attend in their place.


Retirement Social for Nancy Auer

Biological Sciences invites the campus community to a retirement social to recognize Nancy Auer (Bio Sci) from 7:30 to 9 a.m. tomorrow (April 20) at the Heritage Atrium on the 7th floor of the Dow building. Breakfast refreshments will be served.


Campus Forum Tomorrow

University President Glenn Mroz will host a campus forum at 2 p.m. tomorrow (April 20) in Memorial Union Ballroom A.

Release time will be provided for hourly staff with the approval of their supervisor. The presentation will be video streamed live.

If you would like to submit a question during the campus forum, email it to Staff Council

Do not use the chat feature within the live streaming player.


Physics Colloquium Tomorrow 

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


Fundraiser for Syria Friday

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

A fundraiser will be held from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, (April 21) in the MUB Commons. Middle Eastern food, including baghlava, falafel and veggie or beef kabobs will be served. The full meal is $8 which includes a fountain drink.
UP Teaching and Learning Conference

The William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning invites Michigan Tech faculty, academic staff and graduate teaching assistants to participate in the first Upper Peninsula Teaching and Learning Conference (UP-TLC) to be held Friday, May 5 at Michigan Tech. 

Read previous Tech Today article for more information. 

On the Road

Patty Kyllonen, director of Human Resource Information Systems, attended the annual banner conference, “Ellucian Live,” March 19-22 in Orlando. Ellucian Live brings together 8,400 attendees from 1,300 higher education institutions all dedicated to a common goal:  student success.


Renee Hiller director of Human Resources, attended the 2017 College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR) Spring Conference hosted by the Midwest Region March 26-28 in St. Louis.

Attending the CUPA-HR Spring Conference is a great opportunity to gain invaluable takeaways about new and current HR strategies. Hiller currently serves on the Midwest Region Board of Directors as director of membership and chapter engagement and will transition to Chair-Elect for the Board of Directors July 1.