March 20, 2018, Vol. 24, No. 14

Alumni remember quirks and quotes

It's almost time to pull the Agassiz out of the water for the winter.
It's almost time to pull the Agassiz out of the water for the winter.

The professor in our electrical engineering course seemed to get drunker and drunker as the class went on. We were all looking around almost laughing out loud. He was writing on the blackboard in letters and numbers about two feet tall in a rather scribbling manner. The next day Jim Jones told us he was having an insulin reaction and was waiting for the bell to sound so he could run to the union building and get a candy bar. We felt a little foolish when we found out the truth that he was in serious medical danger.

Merle Potter ’58

– Hi Merle. I started reading this and wondered if I could include it with this week’s roundup. Was as surprised as the ended as you probably were. Thanks! –SB

My roommate Carl Benz ’73 was taking a class from Dr. Svetlana Winnekow about 1970-1. She was known as a very tough, no-nonsense instructor. After getting a test back, he noticed that all it seemed to have on it were several, what appeared to be, random red ink marks and a test score much lower than he had expected. He was unhappy and met her in her office to discuss the test results and understand what the red marks meant. Dr. Winnekow spoke broken English with a heavy Russian accent and Carl, frustrated by now, wasn’t understanding her explanation. After a while, he realized that he wasn’t making any progress and tried a last resort to improve his grade by asking for “partial credit” for his test answers. In a stern voice, she replied “Partial credit??? You build bridge! Bridge fall down! You want partial credit”???
To this day, he still gets upset and angry whenever I bring it up!

Jim Accetta. ’73

– Hey Jim, funny how those memories of tough professors stay with us through the years. Glad we can feel confident driving across bridges designed by Tech grads! –SB

Good morning,

I was a Mathematics major at MTU 73-77. I had a favorite professor in the Math Department named George Bahrman. I had him for Calculus, Differential Equations, and Advanced Dif Eq. I also graded papers for him as an upper classman.

I remember in one class he asked if anyone had a question and I asked if he would solve an equation for me to check my answer. He wrote my answer down in the lower right-hand corner of the board and then worked out the equation to the same answer.

He turned, bowed to me, and said “Miss Anderson, you are the boss.” #embarrassed #happy

Melodie (Anderson) Hayes
BSMA 1977
MSBA 1979

– Hi Melodie! Good memory. And I’ll know where to come with my math questions. –SB

This is not really a quote, but I had a math professor (sorry, can’t remember his name – would’ve been c. 1976 and might have been differential equations) who had an annoying habit of ending most of his sentences with “right”, “correct”, “right-correct” and occasionally “correct-right”. One time another student and I decided to keep track of how often he used these filler words, with each of us taking a word to tally. I can’t remember the final count, but it was surprisingly large, and we definitely had a good chuckle afterwards. I had a tough time paying attention to his lectures from that point on (which may in part explain my final grade).

Russ Kerlin ’83

– Thanks, Russ. It’s funny how we seem to have our go-to words and phrases, right? Or is it correct? –SB