November 22, 2016, Vol. 23 No. 6

Did you Love Prince’s Point? Send us your Stories.

princes point campus image - fall

In late October, students from the First Year Experience (FYE) residence hall joined others from across campus for the annual Make A Difference Day. Kyle McGurk, a fifth-year electrical and computer engineering student from Green Bay, Wisconsin, led a team of 35 student volunteers on a clean-up of Prince’s Point. This recreational area on Portage Lake, just below the campus, is heavily used by students year-round.

They removed most signs of the social fire pits resulting in 1.5 cubic yards of waste ash. They also sifted and “Mined” three cubic yards of black sand from the top of the beach which removed:

■ 100 Gallons of partially burned organic matter (charcoal, ash)
■ 10 Gallons of metal and glass
■ ¼ cubic yard of rocks

They also cleared ground vegetation from about 30 feet of the beach shore. Kyle reports that there is a lot more to be done, “but it is a start,” he says.

Future plans are to improve the trail leading down from Cliff Drive, remove remaining vegetation from the shoreline and identify a source of proper firewood to eliminate the eliminate the burning of pallets.

Kyle is also hoping to do fill in the blanks on the area’s history and hear more about student experiences there. Do you have any supporting documentation, minutes, plans, reports, stories, etc. that might help form a more coherent timeline and vision for what Prince’s Point has been, is, and will continue to be for our community?

Send them to and we will feature in a future issue of TechAlum.

At Tech


Caryn Heldt Named to James and Lorna Mack Endowed Chair in Bioengineering

A Michigan Tech alumna, Heldt has been on the faculty since 2010.  She is recognized both for her teaching and her research.

“Dr. Heldt cares deeply that her students learn and grow,” says. S. Komar Kawatra, chair of chemical engineering.  “This caring is highlighted in her success in training students for research careers. Her high . . . [ Full Story ]


Inactive Patents: Innovate More, Search Less

Many innovators and inventors feel they have squandered hours fruitlessly rifling through old patents on the US Patent and Trademark Office website, trying to figure out which are still active and how they may relate to developing technologies.

A team from Michigan Tech decided to take matters into their own hands and streamline the exploration . . . [ Full Story ]


Michigan Tech Named a Military Friendly School

First published in 2009, Military Friendly Schools is a resource for veterans and their families, helping them select the best college, university, or trade school to receive the education and training needed to pursue a civilian career. Institutions earning the Military Friendly school designation were evaluated using public data sources and responses from a . . . [ Full Story ]


Michigan Tech Veteran Returns to Help Struggling Vets

In July, Michelle Kovachich began her duties as a readjustment counselor with the Veterans Health Administration (VHA). Her new job brought the Calumet native, a Michigan Tech alumna and US Army veteran, home after more than a decade that took her from Alaska to the Middle East and back again.

Kovachich says she loves to . . . [ Full Story ]

Alumni Around the World


ME Grad and Veteran Celebrates 100 Years

Very warm wishes to John P. Neu a 1948 mechanical engineering grad who celebrated his 100th birthday on September 1. Both John and his wife Lois served in WWII. John entered the Army Air Corps shortly after he and Lois married in 1942. He went off to Santa Ana, California, while she volunteered as an . . . [ Full Story ]


Alumnae and Students Meet at Society of Women Engineers Conference

Michigan Tech students and alumnae enjoyed a lively meetup in Philadelphia as part of the Society of Women Engineers annual conference WE16 the weekend of October 28.

The Michigan Tech SWE section sponsored 16 students to attend the conference for professional development.

Key Highlights from the conference include Michigan Tech alumna and current University of . . . [ Full Story ]

Superior Ideas snowdayopt1

Superior Ideas: Snow Day App

IT Oxygen’s Snow Day App is a mobile application that allows its users who are in need of a babysitter (on a snow day) to find someone who is available to babysit. Or it can be used for a babysitter to find work on short notice.

Parents in need of a babysitter will be . . . [ Full Story ]

Alumni Profile

Derek Chapel ’05


Why did you choose Michigan Tech? Michigan Tech has a well-deserved reputation for being a great engineering school. I wanted to become an engineer, and growing up in Northern Michigan I am the type of person who is used to winter weather and likes to do things outdoors. I decided Tech was a great place . . . [ Full Story ]

Tech Sports


Tom Kearly Announces Retirement

Michigan Tech Head Football Coach Tom Kearly announced his retirement last week following the final game of the 2016 season. Kearly just wrapped up his 11th season as the Huskies Head Coach, recording an outstanding overall record of 70-44 during that span. Coach Kearly has been considering this decision for quite some time and felt . . . [ Full Story ]


Olson Named Next Tech Head Football Coach

Defensive Coordinator Steve Olson has been selected as the next Head Football Coach at Michigan Tech University, following Head Coach Tom Kearly’s retirement on Monday. Olson will become the 16th head coach in program history, which began in 1920.

“I’d like to thank Suzanne Sanregret and the administrative team for entrusting me to take . . . [ Full Story ]


Volleyball Season Ends in Five Set Thriller at SVSU

The Michigan Tech volleyball team had its 2016 season come to an end in a five-set thriller at Saginaw Valley State in the quarterfinal round of the GLIAC Tournament Wednesday (Nov. 16). The Huskies and Cardinals battled to extra points in the first four sets at Hamilton Gymnasium, and it was the home team winning . . . [ Full Story ]

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Remember that Wintry Drive Home?

Many Huskies headed home this weekend for a well-earned Thanksgiving break.

Do you have a favorite memory of that drive home? Was there always snow when you came back? If you have a story, please share it with us at

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Around the Keweenaw

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