All posts by Dr. Morrison

What are recruiters looking for in 2018?

For the answer to this question, let’s ask NACE, the National Association of Colleges and Employers.  Their article highlights these topics:

  • Trend : Recruiters are moving toward informal means of recruiting
  • Trend: Breaking down silos
  • Focus is on industry, not major
  • It’s not all about the technical skills
  • There’s improved communication across campus
  • Note an increased focus on diversity and inclusion
  • Predictions for STEM Recruiting in 2018

Which University does NACE use as their example in their introduction?  Well, Michigan Technological University, of course!  Go to the link to read NACE’s analysis of the 2018 recruiting season.

How can I get a job, internship, or co-op? What’s the method these days?

Career Services at Michigan Tech is designed and operated to help you get a job, internship, or co-op.  As soon as you arrive on campus as a first-year student, transfer student, or graduate student, you should visit Career Services and check out their programs and sign up for the ones you need.

Their main events are the fall and spring Career Fairs.  You should go to these every year you are at Tech.  Even if you’re not looking for a job, you should go and see how it is done, get your materials into the system, and learn from watching and participating in Career Fair.  Our Career Fair is one of the best in the nation.

Currently Career Services uses Handshake as the portal for connecting students with recruiters.  Every Michigan Tech student has a Handshake account.  Go to the Handshake login site, log in, and take a look at what there is on offer.

In 2018 I went to an interesting session put on by Career Services.  They said that these days more than 70% of folks (up to 85% by some estimates) get their jobs from personal contacts. They say the right way to approach Career Fair is to go to the events that precede Career Fair.  These events are less crowded, you don’t have to dress up, and you can give out your resume and talk to the person receiving it.  These events are happening the week before Career Fair and throughout the year (info sessions, company presentations, Industry Days, and things like that).  Second, when you go to Career Fair, don’t spend your time in long lines.  Go to the smaller companies where you can actually talk to someone and show them who you are. Always bring an up-to-date copy of your resume.  Career Services can help you to improve your resume.
I also learned that the job-search success rates for folks with GPA between 2.5 and 3.0 IS THE SAME as the success rate of folks with GPA between 3.0 and 3.5.  So you can get that job.  You just need to follow this advice and put in the leg work to meet people who may want to give you a job.  Good luck!



May I take both CM 3410 and HU 3120?

No, that is not permitted.  CM 3410 is required for graduation with a degree in chemical engineering from Michigan Tech.  You may take HU 3120 as a substitute course for CM 3410.  Because HU 3120 functions as an equivalent course to CM 3410, you may not take them both.


CM 3410 – Technical Communication for Chemical Engineering
Study of the purposes, genres, and applications of technical communication in chemical engineering professions, including written, oral, visual, and graphic communication. Assignments may include memos, progress reports, procedures, memo and formal reports, research citations, and job-seeking requirements. Emphasizes organization, support, coherence, usefulness, ethics, and professionalism.
Credits: 3.0
Lec-Rec-Lab: (3-0-0)
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Restrictions: May not be enrolled in one of the following Class(es): Freshman, Sophomore, Senior
Pre-Requisite(s): UN 1015


HU 3120 – Technical and Professional Communication
A study of written and oral communication in technical and scientific environments; emphasizes audience, writing processes, genres of scientific and technical discourse, visual communication, collaboration, professional responsibility, clear and correct expression. Students write and revise several documents and give oral report(s). Computer Intensive.
Credits: 3.0
Lec-Rec-Lab: (0-3-0)
Semesters Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer
Restrictions: May not be enrolled in one of the following Class(es): Freshman, Sophomore
Pre-Requisite(s): UN 1015 and (UN 1025 or Modern Language – 3000 level or higher)

Which enterprise project work course should I take?

If you are a first-year chemical engineering student, you take ENT 1960, but we don’t recommend first-year students take Enterprise, and we have  a FAQ that explains why.

If you are a sophomore, you should take one or both of these classes:

  • ENT 2950 – Enterprise Project Work I, 1 cr (not open to freshmen)
  • ENT 2960 – Enterprise Project Work II, same as above

If you are junior, you should take one or both of these classes:

  • ENT 3950 – Enterprise Project Work III, 1 cr, must be junior or senior
  • ENT 3960 – Enterprise Project Work IV, same as above

If you are a junior who has taken the all four of the courses above and are not senior-design ready, but still want to do Enterprise, take this class:

  • ENT 3980 – Pre-Capstone Enterprise Project Work, 1 cr, repeatable up to 2cr (not open to freshmen, sophomores), Pre-Requisite(s): ENT 3950 and ENT 3960

If you are a senior doing Enterprise for senior design, you should take both of these classes:

  • ENT 4950 – Enterprise Project Work V Capstone, 2cr, must be engineering senior design ready
  • ENT 4960 – Enterprise Project Work VI Capstone, 2cr, must be senior, pre-requisite ENT 4950

If you complete ENT 4950 and ENT4960 and wish to take another Enterprise project class, you may take this one:

  • ENT 4961 – Enterprise Project Work VII, 1cr, pre-requisites: ENT 3950, 3960, 4950, 4960

If you wish to do a minor in Enterprise, please visit the Registrar’s office site to see the requirements. (Enterprise is an interdisciplinary minor)

For information purposes only there are two other Enterprise project classes, but no chemical engineering major can take these courses; they are for non-engineers:

  • ENT 4900 – Senior Enterprise Project Work V Non-Capstone, 2cr, must be senior, must NOT be College of Engineering
  • ENT 4910 – Senior Enterprise Project Work VI Non-Capstone, same as above

Do I have to take CH 2420 (Organic II)?

To earn a BS degree in chemical engineering from Michigan Tech you must take CH 2420 Organic II or you may take a substitute course.  The current substitute courses are:

  1. CH 2420 – Organic Chemistry II, 3 credits, offered Spring and Summer; Pre-Requisite(s): CH 2410
  2. BL 2100 Principles of Biochemistry; 3 credits, offered in the Fall, Pre-Requisites BL 1020 or BL 1040 or BE 2400 and CH 1112 or (CH 1150 and CH 1151)
  3. CM 4740 – Hydrometallurgy/Pyrometallurgy, 4 credits, offered in the Spring, Pre-Requisite(s): CH 1122 or (CH 1160 and CH 1161)

If you take CM 4740, the extra credit may count as core technical elective.  To choose the substitute class simply register for the class–there is no additional paperwork.

I ran my degree audit and now at the last minute I need extra courses! What do I do?

Hold on, don’t panic.  Maybe everything is ok.

You may have made the common error of running a “what-if” audit.  Here’s how it happens.

The degree audit page has a drop down list to choose your degree program. There are directions on the page that tell you to *only* choose your degree program
if you are changing majors but this is frequently missed. So what happens is, a student will pick their major from the drop down list and instead of running
the audit with their correct catalog term, and they accidentally run a “what-if”audit that uses the newest catalog term.  The newest catalog term includes changes made to the chem eng degree  since you started, and you do not usually want to use the newest catalog term.

If you run your degree audit with the correct catalog term, labeled as “latest” perhaps (most likely) everything is ok.  If you run the “latest” audit and still have classes missing, these are classes you need, and you may need to come see an advisor.

I’m planning to transfer in prerequisites but I cannot register! What should I do?

To register for a class you must either have

  1. Credit for all prerequisites,
  2. Be registered at Michigan Tech for all prerequisites, or
  3. Be registered at some other institution for prerequisites.  For Michigan Tech to know that you are registered for a prerequisite you are taking off campus, you must go to the Michigan Tech Registrar’s office and request that your off campus course be recorded as “in progress.”  This should be done before registration so that you can make use of your registration slot.

I’m confused about registering for CM3215 Transport Lab!

This is a bit confusing; sorry about that.

The CM3215 Transport Lab meets on Monday for a one-hour lecture, and has two more meetings, a two-hour meeting on Tuesday (or sometimes on Thursday) and an additional one-hour lab meeting on Wednesday.

To sign up for CM3215 you must sign up for the lecture (section 0A) which is on Mondays, and for the lab, which has two meetings, Tuesday (or Thursday) and Wednesday  (the lab will be L01, L02, etc.).

If you do not sign up for both parts, you will get a “linked course error” telling you that you have missed one of the parts.

To recap, you will attend class on Monday and Wednesday at the same time of day in a classroom with everyone who is taking the class. In addition, you will be in the Brozzo Laboratory (19-103) for a two-hour session one day a week, at a time that depends on which lab section you take.

best wishes,
Dr. Morrison

Is there a Chemical Engineering Learning Center?

In 2018 the answer is:  YES.  The OXE Chemical Engineering Learning Center (CMLC) is organized by the Chemical Engineering Honor Society OXE and it is staffed by students specializing in thermodynamics, transport, and fundamentals. The Learning Center is open Mondays and Wednesdays from 6-8 in Chem. Sci. 215.  Contact Seth Kriz for more information.  Please give your comments to OXE members to help improve this peer service.


I am unable to register for CM 3410 Technical Communications. What do I do?

There are several reasons you may be unable to register for CM 3410 Tech Com for ChemEs.

  1. You do not have junior class standing (“juniors” are those who have 60-89.5 earned credits).  If you have more than 89.5 credits but need CM 3410, please email to request a waiver.  A waiver will allow you to register for the class as long as you have the prereq, UN 1015, and if there is a seat available.  You should obtain your waiver before registration opens, if possible.  If you have fewer than 60 earned credits, you will need to wait to take CM 3410.
  2. The class is full.  CM 3410 sections fill in both fall and spring; usually there are extra seats in summer.  If you find that the sections are full, and if you need the class to graduate, we may be able to add you to a section as an overload.  Please explain your situation in your email.  Note that you may take CM 3410 as late as fall of senior year and you may substitute HU 3120 for CM 3410 (there are often on-line sections of HU 3120).
  3. You do not have the Pre-Requisite(s): UN 1015.  You must have credit for the prerequisite to take a course at Michigan Tech.  If you took the class and plan to transfer the credit, you must arrange for that transfer before you can register for CM 3410.

CM 3410 is offered in the fall, spring, and summer semesters, and is a prereq for the senior CM classes, UO and plant design.  You may take CM 3410 at the same time as fall senior classes; taking it before senior classes is recommended.

If you are a transfer student, and you transferred in HU 3120, this can substitute for CM 3410.  If you are having difficulty scheduling CM 3410, you may substitute HU 3120.  HU 3120 may not count twice for your degree; thus if it is counting as a general education course, it cannot also count as the substitute for CM 3410.