Michigan Tech Receives $5M Grant from Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow Foundation

Chemical Sciences and Engineering Building sign, framed by blue flowers, the building, and sunlit trees.

Michigan Tech has received a $5 million outright grant — with the potential for a $2 million matching grant — from The Herbert H. and Grace A. (HHGA) Dow Foundation for renovations to the Chemical Sciences and Engineering Building (Chem Sci).

The four-year grant supports Tech’s plans to increase capacity to design, develop and deliver solutions for rural health and human-centered engineering by creating a state-of-the-art health education and research center. Funding from the HHGA Dow Foundation will enable the University to complete renovation of Chem Sci, a facility that will be integral to the new center.

“The Herbert H. and Grace A. Dow Foundation continues to see the potential in our students and is helping to advance Michigan Tech as a premier national university positioned to lead the nation in the Fourth Industrial Revolution,” said Rick Koubek, University president. “This investment in Michigan Tech signifies an important milestone in the modernization of facilities across campus. And, thanks to their support, Michigan Tech students will have access to state-of-the-art equipment and technology that best prepares them for the workforce of the future.”

Read more at Michigan Tech News.

Vice President for Research Search Committee Announced

The following individuals have agreed to serve on the Vice President for Research Search Committee:

  • Kristin Brzeski, assistant professor, College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science
  • Yu Cai, professor and associate chair, Department of Applied Computing
  • Kelsey Kocher, sponsored programs analyst, Vice President for Research Office
  • Susan Janiszewski, director, Michigan Tech Research Institute
  • Kelly Kallio, assistant vice president for government sponsored programs, Sponsored Programs Office
  • Fengjing Liu, associate professor, College of Forest Resources and Environmental Science
  • Greg Odegard, professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
  • Ravi Pandey, dean, College of Sciences and Arts
  • David Rowe, MTEC SmartZone
  • Andrew Storer, provost and senior vice president for academic affairs
  • Matt Sisson, Graduate Student Government
  • Erin Syth, research coordinator, Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics
  • Ezra Bar-Ziv, professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics

Megan Goke, representing Human Resources, and Beth Lunde-Stockero, representing Equal Opportunity Compliance and Title IX, will serve as ex officio members.

The committee met with President Rick Koubek in late November to review the position description and will continue to meet until a pool of finalists is selected for on-campus interviews.

Additional information regarding the search process will be shared in Tech Today as it becomes available.

Rail Transportation Program Scholarships

The Rail Transportation Program (RTP) at Michigan Tech is offering scholarships for students with a demonstrated interest in the railroad industry. Details are on the RTP website.

Scholarship amounts range from $1,000 to $2,500 for the 2023-24 school year. To apply, submit the 2023-2024 Rail Transportation Program Railroad Scholarships Application. The deadline for applications is Jan. 10.

Contact David Nelson at dannelso@mtu.edu for more information.

'So, I'm Involved with Someone at Tech...'

A question we may all get on occasion goes something like this: “So, I’m involved with someone… intimately involved. They work/take classes here at Tech, too. Is that OK? Do I have to tell my supervisor/chair?”

The Consensual Relations Policy is designed to provide guidance to all Michigan Tech employees involved in consensual relationships. This policy helps to maintain a community that is free from sexual misconduct, favoritism and/or a conflict of interest.

Prohibited Conduct
Prohibited conduct includes participating in evaluations/decisions related to any aspect of employment/education of a student/employee with whom the employee has any consensual intimate and/or sexual relationship.

If the employee has decision-making responsibility over the other employee/student, such as supervising, grading, advising, hiring, teaching, counseling, coaching or other terms of employment/instructional activity, the relationship needs to be discussed with the immediate supervisor. The supervisor must implement a plan to eliminate any decision-making responsibility and/or conflict of interest between parties. This policy includes staff, faculty, graduate and undergraduate students, and volunteers.

Be Aware of Potential Issues
Employees engaged in consensual relationships who are not in a supervisory role as described above should be aware of the unequal power inherent in these relationships and of potentially exploitative issues, now and in the future. These could include ethical concerns, potential for conflict, validity of consent and the possibility of diminishing trust and respect from others.

See the Consensual Relations Policy for additional details. If you have questions, contact Human Resources.

Concerns about sexual misconduct may be reported by using Report a Concern or contacting Michigan Tech's Title IX coordinator.

New Episode of 'Locked in my Office @ MTU' Podcast

The podcast "Locked in my Office @ MTU" has released Episode 4: "Talking AI and Existentialism With Alex & Ben."

In this episode, host Shane Oberloier (ECE) welcomes guests Associate Professor of Philosophy Alexandra Morrison (HU) and software engineering major Ben Conlin.

The conversation mainly centers around artificial intelligence and its use at the University — with detours toward views on humanity and how important genuine experiences are.

The episode can be viewed (or listened to) on YouTubeSpotify and Apple Podcasts.

The "Locked in my Office @ MTU" podcast is part of an outreach effort by the provost's Artificial Intelligence Working Group at Michigan Tech.

Register Now: Middle School Volleyball Development League

Registration for the Michigan Tech Middle School Volleyball Development League closes on Jan. 3 at 11:59 p.m. This four-week league helps girls in grades 7 and 8 improve their skills in preparation for the upcoming season. Space (and time) is running out! Sign up today! 

Days and Times:

  • Tryouts/Team Sorting: Monday, Jan. 8, from 6-7:30 p.m. (check-in begins at 5:30 at the SDC front counter)
  • Practices: Wednesdays from 6-7:30 p.m. (starting Jan. 10 and ending Jan. 31)
  • Scrimmages: Fridays from 6-7:30 p.m. (starting Jan. 12 and ending Jan. 26)
  • Tournament: Friday, Feb. 2, from 6-7:30 p.m.

Cost (including jersey):

  • $90 per player for the first participant
  • $75 per player for additional siblings

Learn more at Michigan Tech Recreation.

Winter Break HuskiesFit Classes

Join HuskiesFit instructors Allison, Angela and Ruby for some much-needed self-care over winter break with the following classes.

  • Monday, Dec. 18, 5-5:50 p.m. — Zumba
  • Tuesday, Dec. 19, 12-12:50 p.m. — CIRCL Mobility
  • Tuesday, Dec. 19, 5-5:50 p.m. — Zumba Toning
  • Wednesday, Dec. 20, 5-5:50 p.m. — Belly Dance
  • Thursday, Dec. 21, 5-5:50 p.m. — Zumba Gold
  • Friday, Dec. 22, 12-12:50 p.m. — Taylor’s Version Power Flow Yoga (open to ages 13 years and older!)
  • Tuesday, Jan. 2, 12-12:50 p.m. — CIRCL Mobility
  • Thursday, Jan. 4, 12-12:50 p.m. — Power Vinyasa Flow Yoga
  • Friday, Jan. 5, 12-12:50 p.m. — CIRCL Mobility

These classes are included in the HuskiesFit Punch Card. Day passes are also available. See individual class pages at HuskiesFit Adult Programs for more information.

Marcus Tomashek Named GLIAC Offensive Player of the Week (Again)

Michigan Tech men's basketball second-year guard Marcus Tomashek has been tabbed GLIAC Offensive Player of the Week.

Tomashek is the only player to earn two GLIAC Offensive Player of the Week accolades this season.

He averaged 29.5 points per game in the Huskies' GLIAC opening weekend split. He scored a career-high 39 points in the last-second loss to Saginaw Valley on Thursday (Dec. 7) while leading MTU with 20 points in their win over Wayne State on Saturday (Dec. 9).

Read more at Michigan Tech Athletics.

Women's Basketball Starts GLIAC Play 1-1 at SDC Gym

The Michigan Tech women's basketball played their first GLIAC games of the season at the SDC Gymnasium over the weekend, coming away 1-1.

Tech outlasted Saginaw Valley State 56-51 on Thursday (Dec. 7) to earn head coach Sam Clayton her 100th career win.

"We kept our confidence and energy and were able to pull away for a little, but we let a couple of turnovers turn into a plethora of turnovers, which has been our Achilles' heel all season," head coach Sam Clayton said. "I've had a lot of great players here, so I've been super blessed — getting 100 career wins is no doing of my own; I'm appreciative of the way God's blessed me and the way my players have blessed me with wins, and so much more than that."

The Huskies fell to Wayne State 61-42 on Saturday (Dec. 9). A slow start offensively was too much for MTU to overcome.

"Obviously missing shots is one thing, but the consistent turnovers — we just looked flat. We have to figure it out," Clayton said. "We're going to keep trying new stuff. Sara (Dax) stepped up as a leader and put everything out there, which is great to see, and we can build off that. Dani (Nuest) came in as a freshman not playing a ton, and I thought she did good."

Read more at Michigan Tech Athletics.

Men's Basketball Falls to Cardinals, Defeats Warriors in GLIAC Play

The Michigan Tech men's basketball team opened conference play at the SDC Gymnasium this weekend.

The Huskies fell 78-77 to Saginaw Valley State on Thursday (Dec. 7), despite a career-high 39 points scored by second-year guard Marcus Tomashek.

"Credit to Saginaw, they are very athletic and made some tough and timely shots — we still weren't solid enough," head coach Josh Buettner said. "The first half, we took care of the basketball and gave up offensive rebounds. In the second half, we rebounded better, but we turned it over in the second half. I thought our guys fought and there were some really good individual efforts. They made a couple more plays than us and there were some mistakes on our end, but Saginaw played a good game."

MTU put forth the team's most complete game of the season Saturday (Dec. 9), holding Wayne State to 29 points in the second half for a 84-77 win.

"In the big picture, this is a huge win. Our guys have kept working even though we haven't always gotten results. We've lost some close games, and to come back and fight and believe — it's a big-time win," Buettner said. "We had some guys that stepped up their competitive level in the second half, and it started with them making the decision that they're going to guard — and to hold Wayne State to 29 points is impressive."

Read more at Michigan Tech Athletics.

Hockey Splits CCHA Series with Wildcats

Michigan Tech hockey split their first home-and-home CCHA series against Northern Michigan this season.

The Huskies defeated Northern Michigan 4-2 on Friday (Dec. 8) at the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena, scoring three goals in the second period to recover from a 1-0 deficit. Logan Pietila, Arvid Caderoth and Jack Works found the net for Tech.

"The environment was incredible tonight," Tech coach Joe Shawhan said. "It was a fun game. I'm very proud of the guys. We finally got over .500 after not winning a game in the first month of the season. Tomorrow is going to be really fun too."

MTU fell 3-1 to the Wildcats on Saturday (Dec. 9) at the Berry Events Center, trailing by three goals before Ryland Mosley scored the lone goal for the Huskies.

"Northern Michigan was the better team tonight," Shawhan said. "They seemed to have a lot of space on the ice. We got individualistic and that was pretty easy for them to defend."

Read more at Michigan Tech Athletics.

Nordic Skiers Open Season at Duluth CXC Cup; Axel Aflodal Wins Skate Sprint

The Michigan Tech Nordic ski team opened their season at the Duluth CXC Cup on Saturday and Sunday (Dec. 9 and 10).

Leading the Huskies was first-year skier Axel Aflodal, who won a loaded men's skate sprint to kick off his collegiate career with a bang.

"Overall we really enjoyed being able to start our season again racing as a team," head coach Tom Monahan Smith said. "Axel taking the win in the men's skate sprint in a really strong field that included two-time U.S. national champion Kristoffer Alm Karsrud, so that was really exciting for us to celebrate as a team. We also got some really great experience racing in some adverse conditions with it being rainy on Saturday and some soft tracks on Sunday. So I think our student-athletes got a lot of takeaways from being able to race in that environment on that specific type of snow."

Read more at Michigan Tech Athletics.

This Week in Michigan Tech Athletics

Tuesday (Dec. 12)
• Huskies Drive Time, 7:30-8 a.m. on Mix 93 WKMJ-FM

Saturday (Dec. 16)
• Nordic Skiing at Salomon CXC Cup - Cable (Cable, Wisconsin)

Sunday (Dec. 17)
• Nordic Skiing at Salomon CXC Cup - Cable (Cable, Wisconsin)
• Men's Basketball vs. Kentucky Wesleyan, 1 p.m. at SDC Gym on Mix 93 WKMJ-FM & FloSports

Tuesday (Dec. 19)
• Men's Basketball vs. Winona State, 1 p.m. at SDC Gym on Mix 93 WKMJ-FM & FloSports
• Women's Basketball at Winona State, 6 p.m. Mix 93 WKMJ-FM


Athletics News
Read more in the MTU Athletics weekly update.

In the News

Robert Nemiroff (Physics) was interviewed by MLive for a story about his role in the launch of NASA’s Astronomy Picture of the Day.


Inside Higher Education covered a letter to Michigan Tech from the Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE) addressing an incident of alleged retaliation against a faculty member for comments made in the classroom in November.


WLUC TV6 covered Michigan Tech’s announcement that all four games in the 2023 Great Lakes Invitational hockey tournament will be broadcast in the Upper Peninsula on FOX UP. MTU is hosting the tournament Dec. 28 and 29 at Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Michigan.


DBusiness mentioned Michigan Tech in a profile of Karen Mondora ’96 (B.S. Environmental Engineering), the new assistant city manager of Farmington Hills, Michigan, and the first woman to serve in the role. Mondora’s appointment was announced in November by the Oakland County Times.


The Green Bay Press-Gazette mentioned Michigan Tech in a story about a new Closets by Design franchise launched in New Franken, Wisconsin, by Chad Loritz ’08 (B.S. Civil Engineering).


Career Services Hosting On-Campus Job Expo

Career Services is hosting an on-campus jobs expo Jan. 16 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Alumni Lounge in the MUB. Students are encouraged to come check out the job opportunities available right here on campus. Many departments will be represented.

On-campus jobs provide opportunities for Michigan Tech students. A part-time job offers income to students who need it and is an important co-curricular opportunity. As a co-curricular opportunity, on-campus work can lead to internships and co-ops, opening the door to full-time offers immediately after graduation. It can also help a student establish a strong foundation for research that leads to enhanced graduate school opportunities.

If your department has not signed up and would like to attend, please contact Career Services at careerfair@mtu.edu.


PhD Defense: Adelina Oronova, Chem

Department of Chemistry (Chem) Ph.D student Adelina Oronova will present their defense tomorrow (Dec. 12) at 3 p.m. in person in Chem Sci 101 and virtually via Zoom webinar.

Oronova's defense is titled "Small Fluorescent Glycoconjugates as Imaging Agents for GLUT Sugar Transporters."

Oronova's advisor is Marina Tanasova.

Join the Zoom webinar.

From the abstract:
The evident connection between metabolic diseases and metabolic alterations led to exploring alternative approaches for diagnosing, monitoring, and treating diseases, with a particular focus on metabolic reprogramming as a new therapeutic target. Metabolic reprogramming of carbohydrate uptake and metabolism is a widely recognized hallmark of cancer. Hence, the deregulations and alterations in the functioning of glucose transporters (GLUTs) as main sugar transporters are common characteristics in various cancers that are being used for targeting cancers.

While the research on targeting glucose-transporting GLUTs dates back to the 1950s, fructosespecific GLUT5 and other non-specific fructose transporters have recently gained attention as potential targets for diagnostics and therapy. This shift is propelled by mounting evidence of the role that fructose plays in the development of a plethora of diseases, including cancer. Thus, targeting fructose transporters has emerged as a prominent strategy to deliver imaging and therapeutic agents specifically to cancer cells reliant on fructose for its development and progression.

Despite years of research, GLUTs’ targeting still faces challenges related to specificity, safety, and efficiency in both diagnostics and therapy. Therefore, novel tools allowing for molecular imaging of fructose-dependent cancers are needed. This dissertation introduces fluorescent imaging probes designed for applications in biomedical imaging. Those include the GLUT5-specific coumarin-based fluorescent probe compatible with PET (positron emission tomography) imaging. The work also showcases the advances toward GLUT mediated delivery of larger fluorophores to broaden an array of fluorescence colors and fluorescence-based analytical tools for GLUT research. Specifically, this dissertation presents GLUT-specific rhodamine-based “turn-on” fluorescent probes, enabling imaging of GLUT activity in live cells and in vivo. The outcomes of this work provide critical insight into GLUT substrate specificity and substrate binding vs. passage, establishing the basis for designing more specific and effective activity and expression probes for GLUTs. Overall, the developed imaging agents reported in this dissertation offer additional functionalities, contributing to the existing repertoire of molecular tools for imaging and distinguishing fructose-dependent cancer cells. This work lays the foundation for further rational design of GLUT-specific probes with desired properties.


Have You Tried Covidence? We Need to Hear From You!

The Van Pelt and Opie Library’s free trial of Covidence, a production tool for systematic reviews, ends Dec. 31, and we want to know what you think! User feedback is very important in our decision-making processes. Please take a few minutes to let us know what you think of Covidence.

Covidence is a tool used for title/abstract screening, full-text screening, data abstraction and quality assessment in literature reviews. Designed to make conducting reviews more efficient and easily tracked, Covidence can be used for any kind of literature review that requires reproducible and reportable reviewing and screening.

It’s not too late to register for your free trial. To create an MTU trial Covidence account, follow these steps:

  1. Sign up for Covidence if you do not already have an account at another institution.
  2. Send an email to library@mtu.edu requesting an invitation to the library trial.
  3. Check your email for the invitation and accept.

Please contact library@mtu.edu with any questions or issues you encounter.


Spring Aquatics Programs

Registration for spring aquatics programs opens on Wednesday (Dec. 13) at 8 a.m.!

Questions? Contact Aquatics Manager Annie Bengry at ambengry@mtu.edu or 906-487-2995.


Fall 2023 WIA Breakfast Social is Today!

Please join Women in the Academy (WIA) for a breakfast celebrating the end of the fall semester. Stop by the MUB Alumni Lounge B anytime between 8 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. today (Dec. 12). There will be continental breakfast and coffee.

There will be no formal program or agenda for this meeting, but there will be discussion tables and lots of opportunities for networking and conversation. Hope to see you there!

Today's Campus Events

To have your event automatically appear, please submit them to the University Events Calendar.

Software Carpentry Workshop in Python

An in-person Software Carpentry Workshop in Python will take place December 11-12, 2023, each day from 9 am to 5 pm in GLRC 202. The workshop is free for all Michigan Tech...


Cram Jam Study Break Snack

ATTENTION all students: Are you hungry? Do you need a break from studying and finals? The Alumni Engagement Office has you covered! Fuel your brain with trail mix at the...


PhD Defense: Adelina Oronova



Husky Hangout: Civil and Environmental Engineering

What is the value of a degree in civil or environmental engineering from Michigan Tech? Come join us to hear from one of our alumni about how Michigan Tech helped to prepare...