Michigan Tech Ranked Among Top Universities in the World

In a just-released ranking of world universities, Michigan Tech is ranked among the top 11 percent worldwide. QS World University Rankings considered 4,322 universities in its latest rankings.

The rankings are based on six measures, including two large annual surveys, one of active academics and one of employers. This year, 74,651 academics and 37,781 recruiters around the world were surveyed. Other yardsticks include the ratio of faculty members to students, the percentage of international faculty and students and citations per faculty member.

QS Top Universities in the World ranks schools by increments of 50 points. In the 2016-17 rankings just released. Michigan Tech scored 501-550. The University has moved up 50 points since it was first ranked by this organization in 2013.

"Our citations have gone way up," said Provost Jackie Huntoon. "As citations continue to increase, I predict that our reputation will rise as well."

According to the QS World University Rankings web site, "the ranking displays clear national trends that suggest that the United States is pulling away from its nearest rivals, while the UK, Australia and some Continental European countries lose ground."

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) tops the ranking for the fifth year in a row and, for the first time since the inaugural rankings of 2004/5, the three leading universities are all American: MIT, Stanford and Harvard. More than half of the top 20 universities are from the US.

See the ranking here.

Pioneering Women in Business

If you are interested in changing the global business leadership landscape and encouraging strong women to enroll in the School of Business and Economics at Michigan Tech, read on.

Helping the future women of business to become leaders and entrepreneurs is the essence of the Pioneering Women in Business (PWB) scholarship. 

The vision for the PWB scholarship was inspired by the memory of Joyce Cayler Lyth '72 and implemented by her husband David Lyth '73 in 2015. 

The Lyths realized the nation needs more women in business-leadership roles. This notion is backed by data that shows nearly 60 percent of companies who were researched did not have a single female board member and nearly 50 percent did not have a female C-suite executive. 

To help Michigan Tech transform the future of global business leadership we are asking for help.

Visit the Superior Ideas project for more information about the scholarship and how you can make a difference. 

Justin Fitch Memorial Ruck

Last October, Michigan Tech alumni Justin Fitch lost his battle with cancer. Fitch graduated from Tech in 2005 and was commissioned as an Army Officer via Michigan Tech's ROTC program.

To honor his memory, the Justin Fitch Memorial Ruck will be held on Saturday, Oct. 8. A ruck is a three, six, 12 or 22-hour march with weighted backpacks to symbolize the burdens veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and other war-related illnesses carry every day.

Check out the Facebook page and visit here to sign up and start fundraising.

Call for Proposals: Century II Campaign Endowed Equipment Fund (C2E2)

The Office of the Vice President for Research is requesting Century II Campaign Endowed Equipment Fund proposals (C2E2).

The program provides funds to purchase equipment that will have a broad, campus-wide impact and will improve the lives of faculty, staff and students.

Submissions will be accepted until 4 p.m. on Oct. 20. Late submissions will not be accepted.

Send one electronic copy of all the required documents, in a pdf, to Cathy Jenich at cmjenich@mtu.edu.

For more information, visit C2E2 or contact Cathy.

Discussion Series to Focus on Climate Change

What's the deal with climate change? The local Keweenaw Climate Community (KCC) group has organized a series of discussion-centered events to talk about climate change causes, impacts and solutions.

Throughout the four-part event series, KCC members will use photos, stories, data and even humor to explain everything from the basics of climate science to the complexity of changes and impacts.

The first event will take place from 6 to 8 p.m. tomorrow (Sept. 8), at the Orpheum Theater in Hancock with free pizza and soft drinks.

Following events will be held Oct. 6Nov. 3 and Dec. 1.

The public is welcome and children are invited. There is no admission, but donations to help cover food and rental costs will be accepted.

The series is organized by the KCC, sponsored by the local chapter of the American Chemical Society and the Department of Social Sciences at Michigan Tech.

Breakers to Bridge This Weekend

Imagine one hundred human-powered boats paddling from the breakers to the Portage Lake Lift Bridge. That is exactly what's happening this weekend during "Breakers to Bridge 2016."

The event kicks off at Houghton's Continental Fire Company with check in at the 5point Film Festival. Doors open at 5 p.m. with the film showing at 6:30 p.m.

On Saturday there will a 10-mile timed paddle from the breakers to the bridge followed by a celebration with live music, pasties and beverages at Houghton's Kestner Park. The event celebrates the 20th year of the Keweenaw Land Trust and the 10th anniversary of Michigan Tech's Outdoor Adventure Programs. 

A complete schedule and more information including registration is available online.

Indian Food at Friday's Khana Khazana

A taste of India is on tap at Friday's Khana Khazana in the MUB Food Court. 

The menu features:

  • Chicken Do Pyaza—chicken curry cooked in tomato gravy with onion.
  • Rajma Masala—kidney beans steamed and cooked with vegetables
  • Mixed Vegetable Pakora—crispy fritters as appetizers
  • Gajar Halwa—sweet dessert pudding make with carrot

Serving is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday. The cost is $7.95 for the full meal. Visit Khana Khazana on Facebook.

Film Board Presents "X-Men Apocalypse"

This weekend, Film Board presents "X-Men Apocalypse."


Friday, Sep. 9 — 5:30, 8:30, 11:30 p.m. 
Saturday, Sep. 10 — 2:30, 5:30, 8:30, 11:30 p.m.
Sunday, Sep. 11 — 2:30, 5:30 p.m.

Located in Fisher 135. Tickets are $3 and concessions are $1 each. 

"X-Men Apocalypse" is rated PG-13 for sequences of violence, action and destruction, brief strong language and some suggestive images.

Alex Hughes Wins PLGC Club Championship

Alex Hughes won his First Club Championship this past weekend at Michigan Tech’s Portage Lake Golf Course.  Hughes defeated Travis Kilpela in one extra hole in the final 9 hole match.

Hughes qualified for the Championship Flight by shooting a score of 80.  He was the 13th seed going into Sunday’s match play. Hughes defeated Corey Markham, Brett Hauswirth and Reese Lassila to reach the final. 

In the Championship Flight consolation match, a pair of former Hancock Bulldog golfers squared off with Dylan Peterson defeating Brett Hauswirth one up.

Mel Pearson defeated Mark Gustafson to win his second consecutive Senior Title.  The Senior Division is for players 50 to 64 years old.  Pearson won the match 2 up with one hole to play.  

 Winning the Super Senior Division was Chuck Lucchesi for the third time.  Lucchesi defeated John Lobeck 2 and 0 to take home the title. 

 The medalists from Saturday’s qualifying round were Brian Brewster in the Open Division with a score of 72,  Mel Pearson in the Senior Division with a score of 75 and Chuck Lucchesi in the Super Senior Division with a score of 75. 

Husky Sports in Review

Football Huskies Garner Votes in National Poll

The Michigan Tech football team received votes in the first regular season 2016 American Football Coaches Association Division II Coaches' Poll, released Monday afternoon. The Huskies also garnered votes in the preseason poll which was announced in August.

Michigan Tech kicked off the 2016 season Saturday with a 33-7 victory over Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) foe Walsh (Ohio) University at Sherman Field.

Saturday's GLIAC showdown with Ferris State is slated for 1 p.m. at Sherman Field. 

Huskies' QB Named Player of the Week.

Michigan Tech quarterback Brandon Cowie has been named the GLIAC Offensive Player of the Week following his record setting performance against Walsh in the season opener Saturday.

Cowie, a senior from West Bend, Wis., connected on 26 of 28 attempts and finished the day with 280 yards and three touchdowns. Cowie's completion percentage of 92.8% set a single-game school record, breaking the previous mark of 85.7% which stood since 2008.

Soccer Secures First Win of Season

The Michigan Tech soccer team wrapped up the opening weekend of the 2016 season with a 1-0 win over St. Cloud State Sunday afternoon at Sherman Field. The Huskies notched their goal midway through the first half and held on to secure the shutout.

"I think we got better as the game went on," Head Coach Michelle Jacob said. "Early in the game I think we were a little bit sloppy and we didn't take care of the ball or move it very well. We were able to get the goal in the first half and have the 1-0 lead at the break."

Volleyball Starts Season at 1-3

The Michigan Tech volleyball team wrapped up its weekend at the Flyer Festival with a five-set loss to Augustana on Saturday. The Huskies are now 1-3 on the season.

"Our match record this weekend does not reflect what we saw from our Huskies this tournament," Tech coach Matt Jennings said. "To play at the level we did was very encouraging."

This week in Huskies Sports


Hockey Update with Mel Pearson, 8:30-9:30 a.m. on (Mix 93.5)


Women's Tennis at Ferris State, 1 p.m.
Volleyball vs. Minnesota State Moorhead at UW-Parkside, 3 p.m.
Soccer at Minnesota Duluth, 7 p.m.
Volleyball vs. Upper Iowa at UW-Parkside 7:30 p.m.


Cross Country at UW-Parkside's Midwest Open
Women's Tennis at Grand Valley State, 10 a.m.
Volleyball vs. St. Cloud State at UW-Parkside, 12:30 p.m.
Football vs. Ferris State at Sherman Field, 1 p.m.
Volleyball vs. Minnesota Duluth at UW-Parkside, 5 p.m.


Soccer at Bemidji State, 1 p.m.

For the complete stories and more about Husky Athletics, visit michigantechhuskies.com.


Trip to NIH Seminar in the Works.

Michigan Tech's Office of Research Development is organizing a trip to the NIH Regional Seminar in Chicago, to be held October 26-28. The NIH Regional Seminars provide an opportunity to learn the latest NIH grants policy and process information while interacting with NIH program staff and hundreds of peers from around the country.

Topics include NIH grant writing, peer review, career development, NIH's electronic tools, intellectual property and data, federal research regulations and related topics. Tracks are available for both new and experienced investigators. If you have interest in NIH funding for your research and have not previously attended an NIH regional conference, we highly recommend attending this event.

Jason Carter, assistant to the Vice President for Research Development, will lead the trip and will be available to help faculty determine sessions of possible greatest value.

Research Development will help to coordinate travel logistics and will secure group van travel for those who wish to ride together. Other costs, including a conference registration fee of $380, hotel, per diem, etc are the responsibility of each traveler. Participants can also make their own travel arrangements. Rooms at the conference hotel have a group rate of $259 and can be shared with another Michigan Tech participant if desired. Additional conference information can be found here.

If you have questions or are interested in joining the group,  respond to Peter Larsen by Thursday, Sept. 15.

If you are unable to attend this event, NIH holds two Regional Seminars per year; however, the locations change each year so the conference may not be this close again for several years.

Civil Engineering Graduate Seminar

There will be a Civil Engineering Graduate Seminar from 4 to 5 p.m. tomorrow (Sept. 8) in Dow 642. Xu Yang (CEE) will present "Improvement of Michigan Climatic Files for Pavement Mechanistic-Empirical Design." The public is welcome. 

Climatic inputs have a great influence on Mechanistic-Empirical design results of flexible and rigid pavements. Currently the state of Michigan has 24 climatic files embedded in Pavement ME Design (PMED), but several limitations have been identified.

First, five of the climatic files cannot be directly utilized because of an entire month of missing data. These missing data should be filled properly. Second, the 24 weather stations in Michigan are not uniformly distributed geographically, with some regions poorly represented. It is desirable to add new weather stations for these gap regions. Third, existing climatic files for Michigan have not been updated since 2006. A longer climatic data length can better represent the long-term climatic conditions, so it is recommended that the data length of existing climatic files be extended.

This study aims to improve the climatic files in Michigan for PMED. To achieve this goal, quantity and quality checks of the existing 24 climatic files were conducted to find out the potential missing data and erroneous data. Procedures for filling the missing data and correcting the erroneous data were proposed as well.

The sensitivity of PMED design performance to weather station variation in Michigan, the five individual climatic variables, and the depth to ground water table was investigated. Two traffic levels (heavy and medium) and two pavement types (flexible and rigid) were used for the sensitivity analysis. Typical traffic load spectra, pavement structures and materials in Michigan were incorporated as well.

Additional weather data from the Automated Surface Observation Systems (ASOS) and Michigan Road Weather Information System (RWIS) were investigated as potential sources to add new weather stations in gap regions and to extend the existing climatic files. Quantity and quality checks on both data sources were conducted to evaluate the feasibility of application in PMED.

It was found the ASOS data and the existing climatic data are from the same historical data records. Fifteen additional weather stations were added to fill the gap regions using the ASOS data. In addition, all the existing climatic files have been extended from Feb. 2006 to Dec. 2014. Finally, climatic zones based on pavement design results and multiple climatic variables for Michigan were preliminarily investigated. Fifteen climate zones were established for Michigan based on pavement surface temperatures and distress predictions.

FLSA Informational Sessions

Over the past year, the Department of Labor (DOL) has worked on updating the regulations to the overtime rule which increases the salary threshold for a position to be considered exempt from the minimum wage and overtime protections of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). These changes will go into effect on Dec. 1.

Human Resources will hold FLSA Informational Sessions to provide information about the new changes.  

We have set up two sessions from which to choose. (The sessions are identical). 

  • Friday (Sept. 9)—10-11:30 a.m., MUB Ballroom A
  • Wednesday, Sept. 14—1 to 2:30 p.m. MUB Ballroom A

 FAQ and other information can be found on the FLSA webpage

MEEM Graduate Seminar Speaker Thursday

The ME-EM Graduate Seminar speaker tomorrow (Sept. 8) at 4 p.m. in 103 EERC will be Steven Anton from Tennessee Technological University.  The title of his presentation will be "Microsecond State Detection for Real-Time Structural Health Monitoring in Highly Dynamic Environments."

Anton's research interests include multifunctional and multisource energy harvesting using various transduction mechanisms, realtime structural heath monitoring for damage detection and prognosis and self-powered biomedical sensing. 


This Week in Career Services

Aerospace Day

Meet the creative and forward-thinking engineers of Aerospace, learn about their industry and how you and your major can fit from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. today (Sept. 7).

​This event is geared to those who love to build and design. Industry reps will be on campus to meet you from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. tomorrow  (Sept. 8).

Win by Losing Wellness Challenge

Have you been trying to get healthier and lose weight? SWEAT and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan invite you to participate in "Win by Losing," a free, fun and healthy challenge, open to Michigan Tech employees, that can help you take personal responsibility for your health and reach your weight-loss goals.

Register to be part of Michigan Tech's team beginning today. The official competition runs from Sept. 19 through Nov. 18. Participants will submit weekly weigh-ins to compete against other BCBSM group customers. You will also have access to a toolkit to help you meet your goals. Register here


Info Session for Students: NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP)

Michigan Tech's Research Development Office and Graduate School is offering this session for eligible students to learn more information. The NSF GRFP Overview Session is at 5 p.m today (Sept. 7) in Admin Building 404.

For additional information see the original Tech Today story.

In the News

MITechNews, a news web site about Michigan technologies, featured a video interview with Assistant Professor Nina Mahmoudian (ME-EM), talking about her underwater robots. See the video here.


The Detroit Free Press published a feature article and video about the Paulding Light, a mystery investigated by Michigan Tech engineering students in 2010. Read the article here.


MySanAntonio, a web site featuring news about San Antonio, Texas, people, published an article about Melanie McCoy, an engineer and the only female power and water supervisor in Texas. McCoy mentioned Michigan Tech's Summer Youth Program and its influence on young people going into STEM fields. Read the article here.


MiBiz, a Michigan business news web site, reported on the potential for growth in the forest products industry, an initiative led by the Michigan Forest Biomaterials Institute, a multi-university and organization initiative headed by Professor of Practice Mark Rudnicki (SFRES). Read the article here. 

On the Road

Faculty, students and staff involved in the Rail Transportation Program (RTP) had a busy summer in both presenting at and organizing conferences and events. 

In late May, Pasi Lautala, director of the program, had a poster presentation on paper by Hamed Pouryousef and Lautala at the 11th World Congress in Railway Research, in Milan, Italy. Lautala also participated in the 2nd Railway Talent workshop as part of the conference.
In early June, Lautala made two presentations at the Global Level Crossing Safety & Trespass Prevention Symposium 2016, in Helsinki, Finland. Both presentations were authored by Myounghoon Jeon, Steven Landry, David Nelson and Lautala. The titles of the presentations were "Design and Evaluation of In-Vehicle Auditory Alerts for Railroad Crossings" and "Driver Behavior at Level Crossings Using Naturalistic Driving Study Data."
In July, Lautala and David Nelson were the academic leads for the Rail Academic Conference (TRAC) that combined Railway Engineering Education Symposium (REES) and National University (NURAil) Annual Meeting into one event at Urbana, Illinois. In addition to Lautala and Nelson, two RTP students, Aaron Dean and Sumanth Kalluri participated in the event.
In late July, RTP organized its 6th annual Summer Youth Program in Rail and Intermodal Transportation. Eight students from across the nation participated in the program.

In mid-Aug. RTP led the organization of 4th Annual Michigan Rail Conference in Marquette, that broke past records with over 160 conference participants.

In late Aug., Dave Nelson and 10 Michigan Tech students participated in the American Railway Engineering and Maintenance of Way Association's (AREMA) annual meeting. Four students presented their work in poster competition and Aaron Dean won the first prize in the Undergraduate Division for his work on "Using Naturalistic Driving Study Data to Understand Driver Behavior at Grade Crossings." Derek Owen was the "people's choice" winner for presenting the poster on "Improving the Cold Weather Rail Defect Detection."
Aaron Dean and Nelson also presented a paper by Dean, Nelson and Lautala on "Harnessing Undergraduate Students as Rail Industry Technology Developers/Problem-Solvers," and Nelson presented a paper by Jeon, Landry, Nelson and Lautala on "Driver Behavior at Highway-Rail Grade Crossings Using Naturalistic Driving Study Data and Driving Simulators."