IT Oxygen Enterprise Receives Ford Motor Company Fund Grant

An Enterprise team from Michigan Tech is one of just ten teams nationwide named as winners of the Ford College Community Challenge, sponsored by the Ford Motor Company Fund.

Tech’s IT Oxygen Enterprise was chosen to receive $25,000 in grant money to implement a project working with a local non-profit organization.

This is the tenth year of the Ford College Community Challenge (Ford C3). This year’s theme is “Making Lives Better.” Ford C3 is designed to empower college students to develop community-building projects that address local need. Ford C3 works with partners in higher education that are focused on the critical areas of science, technology, engineering, art and math (STEAM).

Each year up to 10 grants are awarded to proposals that identify an unmet community need tied to one of three areas: "Driving Social Mobility," "Changing the Way People Move through Smart Mobility" and "Building Sustainable Communities."

Building upon a Michigan Tech alumnus’ support for Enterprise teams to engage with local community non-profits that benefit the elderly, IT Oxygen’s project is focused on increasing the mobility of the elderly community in the Upper Peninsula. Specifically, the project intends to address issues related to inefficiencies in the medical transport services provided by Little Brothers Friends of the Elderly of Hancock.

Aiming at achieving Little Brothers' goal of relieving isolation and loneliness among the elderly, along with the goals of the Ford C3, the team is seeking to develop a medical transportation management system. Currently, Little Brothers has limited flexibility to adapt to frequently changing schedules. The IT Oxygen developed system would allow for efficient utilization of Little Brothers’ volunteer network and resource pool.

The management system will create a more flexible and adaptable service, ultimately allowing for the local elderly community to retain their independence and remain in their own homes and still have access to reliable transportation for medical care.

Russ Louks (SBE) is advisor of Tech’s team. He explained how the project came about, “Being the advisor for the IT Oxygen Enterprise has been an incredible opportunity for me to watch the students grow and mature into IT professionals that can deliver projects that add value to an organization. The Little Brothers Friends of the Elderly project, along with the Ford C3 grant and support from an alumnus, takes that a step further. It gives us the opportunity to deliver a project that will have a lasting impact on our community. As our population ages, it is so important that we provide ways for them to stay active in the community, and this project will provide Little Brothers Friends of the Elderly with the tools necessary to assist them for many years to come.”

Rick Berkey, director of the Enterprise Program at Michigan Tech, highlighted the educational impact of this partnership. “The Ford Motor Company Fund serves as a catalyst for ‘making lives better’ by connecting unmet community needs with financial resources, with students serving as the vital link between the two. What a rewarding opportunity for students in the ITOxygen Enterprise to be able to harness their ideas, energy, and talents for the benefit of our local elderly community. The Ford C3 program’s hands-on approach to building sustainable communities aligns well with the Enterprise Program’s team-based, experiential learning model.”

The Ford Motor Company Fund is the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company. Ford Fund works with community and global partners to advance education, safe driving and community life. Ford Motor Company Fund has operated for more than 67 years with ongoing funding from Ford Motor Company.

Business Gets its Day

Today (Sept. 25) is Business Careers Day. Opportunities in finance, accounting, economics, management, IT, supply chain, marketing and more are showcased in the CareerFEST Tent from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. 

Visiting companies include Auto-Owners Insurance, Northern Trust, Fast Enterprises, MacLean-Fogg, Meridian Health Plan, The Dow Chemical Company, CCI Systems and Dematic Corporation. IT Oxygen and CinOptic Enterprises are also participating.

Dematic Corporation designs and develops innovative solutions to optimize supply chains in industries like grocery, apparel, and food and beverage. Students can experience virtual reality at Dematic's information display.

Dow Chemical Company features opportunities across multiple fields—from finance to marketing, and health and safety to sustainability. "Business Careers day provides an opportunity for students to start building a relationship with companies that could lead to future employment. It also gives the School of Business and Economics an opportunity to inform the campus community of what our school has to offer," says  Jonathan Leinonen (SBE).

Seventeen groups of students from Leinonen's Intro to Business course are setting up activities during Business Careers Day that will encourage career readiness, start conversations and promote their department.

At 5 p.m., students and companies can continue their conversations at Business After Hours, a mixer event that invites students to learn more about job opportunities, skills desired by employers and career path options.

Today's Business Day is one of several events making up Career Fest, an interactive event series that encourages students to explore industries, discover careers, ask questions and meet employers on campus, all leading up to Wednesday's Fall Career Fair. 

Undergraduate Research Internship Program (URIP)

The Pavlis Honors College reminds faculty and students of the upcoming deadline for the Undergraduate Research Internship Program. There are two tracks for faculty mentors to consider:

  • Faculty in health-related fields are invited to identify an undergraduate research intern with any amount of prior experience—Portage Health Foundation Scholars
  • Faculty in any discipline are invited to identify an undergraduate intern that is relatively new to
    research or scholarship (less than 6 months)—Pavlis Young Investigators

The internship program is open to any undergraduate student on campus. Faculty are welcome to apply with students with whom they are already working. 

The program consists of a 20-week internship (Mid-October 2017 through Mid-March 2018) as well as professional development activities centered in academic research and scholarship.  

The Pavlis Honors College will provide $800 in funding for the student intern, with the expectation that
faculty will identify a source to match this value, resulting in a total of $1,600 (or $10/hr for 8 hours per
week for a period of 20 weeks). 

Faculty may make use of research funds, institutional research and development funds (IRAD), startup packages or consult their chairs, deans or center/institute management.

Details regarding the application process can be
found on the Pavlis Honors College website. The deadline to submit applications is Monday, Oct. 2. The program will begin the week of Oct. 16 with a kickoff mixer for mentors and interns.

The Pavlis Honors College also facilitates an undergraduate research workshop series. A complete
schedule of workshops with descriptions, dates, times and locations can be found here. The Undergraduate Research Internship Program is made possible by donations from the Portage Health Foundation and with the support of the Pavlis Honors College.

Football Huskies Stage Comeback Win Over SVSU

Michigan Tech rallied from a 10-point deficit to claim a 28-24 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference victory at Saginaw Valley State Saturday afternoon. The Huskies trailed 24-14 going into the fourth quarter, but scored 14 unanswered points.

"We told our kids it was going to be a 60-minute game and we had to hang together and play for the full four quarters which we did," Michigan Tech Head Coach Steve Olson said. "We made some key stops on defense when we needed to and our offense produced and scored. It was a great comeback win for us today.

"This was a great team effort today and I'm proud of our players and our coaching staff. The way they handled the adversity that we knew they were going to face today was outstanding. They battled through it like a family and that's what we were hoping for. We know this is a tough conference and we know each game is going to be tough. I was really proud our guys and their effort."

The Huskies will be back in action Saturday when they host Northern Michigan in the annual Miner's Cup game at Sherman Field. Kickoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.

To read the complete football story and find out more about Tech sports, visit

Volleyball Sweeps Northwood

The Michigan Tech Huskies volleyball team swept the Northwood Timberwolves 3-0 Saturday (Sept. 23) afternoon at Riepma Arena in Midland, Michigan. The Huskies set the pace in set one dominating the net, recording 16 kills and finished the match 25-17, 25-16 and 25-20. 

"I think it was a decisive three-set win," said Tech coach Matt Jennings. "I thought we came out well in all three sets, particularly the second set when we had that big lead. I think our offense was clicking there and we made it really hard for them to score on defense which was nice." 

Tech is now 8-5 overall and 3-2 in conference play. The Huskies will face Grand Valley State Friday (Sept. 29) and Wayne State Saturday (Sept. 30) on the road.

Read the full volleyball story and find out more about Huskies athletics at

Hockey Holds Intrasquad Game

White defeated Gold 2-0 in the Michigan Tech hockey intrasquad game Saturday night (Sept. 23) at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena. The 30-minute game, and Skate with the Huskies event afterward, raised more than $660 for local youth hockey associations. Cost of admission was a donation.

"Overall we saw some good things," Tech head coach Joe Shawhan said. "We're nowhere near where we want to be, and we need to get better in a lot of areas."

Gavin Gould scored the game-winning goal 18 minutes after the puck drop as he carried the puck into the offensive zone and ripped a wrist shot past goaltender Robbie Beydoun. Assists went to defensemen Mark Auk and Mitch Reinke.

Marcus Russell added to the lead 10 minutes later with 1:49 left on the game clock, scoring past goaltender Devin Kero off a feed from Jake Lucchini.

"The work ethic has been good so far in the preseason," added Shawhan. "Several guys came back in great shape who haven't come in that way in the past. I like our goaltending. There's some depth back there and our compete level has been good. Right now we're trying to get some continuity and combinations, and we're trying to develop some leaders in the locker room and get the expectation and accountability where we want it."

Official statistics weren't recorded in the tuneup game. Tech begins the regular season on Sunday (Oct. 1) in Wisconsin. The Huskies and Badgers play in the annual US Hockey Hall of Fame Game at 3 p.m. at the Kohl Center.

Find out more about Huskies athletics at

Tech Soccer Beats Purdue University Northwest

The Michigan Tech soccer team wrapped up the opening weekend of Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference play Sunday with a 1-0 win at Purdue University Northwest in Hammond, Indiana. The Huskies broke through for the game winner in the 54th minute after a scoreless first half of play.

"I'm proud of our effort today to get a win on the road," Michigan Tech Head Coach Michelle Jacob said. "I thought we played better as the game went on and possessed the ball more effectively in the second half which helped set up our scoring opportunities.

"I also thought Andrea Zubke, Rachel Wall, Kassity Swanson, Jamie Brisson, Taylor Archibald and all our midfielders and defenders did a great job keeping their offense in check. We also appreciate Purdue Northwest being proactive in moving the match to earlier in the day due to the heat conditions and in order to keep all the players safe."

The Huskies will be back in action this weekend when they travel to Saginaw Valley at noon Friday and at Northwood at noon Sunday. For the full story and more on Husky sports visit

Physics Colloquium Thursday

The next Physics Colloquium will take place at 4 p.m. Thursday (Sept. 28) in Fisher 139. Venkat Ganesan will present "In Pursuit of Mechanically Strong, Conducting Polymer Electrolytes."

The design of polymer electrolytes often revolves around the goal of achieving simultaneously enhanced conductivities and mechanical strengths in the same material. Indeed, electrolytes possessing high conductivities but low mechanical strengths, exhibit undesirable features such as dendrite formation of the metallic lithium anode which leads to short circuit of the electrodes. Unfortunately, factors that enhance the mechanical strength of a material often lead to a deterioration of the conductivity and vice versa.

In this talk, Ganesan, the Kenneth A. Kobe Professor in Chemical Engineering at the University of Texas, Austin, will discuss some results emerging out of his research in using computational techniques to study three strategies which have been examined in this regard.

ECE Seminar by Shucheng Yu

The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering's Seminar Series Fall speaker is Shucheng Yu, associate professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology. He will present "Secure Data Analytics in Cloud and Connected Systems" from 2-3 p.m. Thursday (Sept. 28) in EERC 214. Refreshments provided.

Biological Sciences Seminar

Chang-Guo Zhan, University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy, will present "Drug Discovery and Development via Rational Design" at 3 p.m. Thursday (Sept. 28) EERC 229.

The presentation will show how powerful understanding the detailed molecular mechanism and mechanism-based computational design are in the current drug design, discovery and development.

Integrated computational-experimental drug design and discovery efforts have led to exciting discovery of promising drug candidates, including our designed novel drugs in Phase II clinical trials; one has received the Breakthrough Therapy Designation by the FDA.

For more information, visit the Biological Sciences webpage.

Job Postings

Job Postings for Monday, September 25, 2017

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

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

Software Engineer, Center for Technology and Training (CTT). Apply online

Scientific Programmer, Center for Technology and Training (CTT). 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. 

IT Connect

Paper Offer

Michigan Tech IT currently has a stock of letter size (8.5” x 11”) three-hole pre-punched paper. We would like to offer this at no charge; it’s perfect if your printer does not have a hole punching feature.

Supplies are limited, so please let us know if you are interested. You can specify quantity by case or ream. All we need to know is how much paper you would like and where you would like it delivered.

If you have any questions regarding this paper offer,  contact us at or call 7-1111.

Reminders 9/25

Coffee Chat Registration Due Today 

In this Coffee Chat, we'll share ways to advance the profession from "listen-and-regurgitate" to content ownership without over stressing students. Join us at 3:30 pm Thursday (Sept. 28) for this conversation and discussion. Coffee and light refreshments will be available to those who register by today (Sept. 25).