Category Archives: Education

You’re invited: GMES Senior Design Presentation Day on May 2

Mine Design. Slope Stability. Water Well Rehabilitation. Come join the audience at the Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences (GMES) Senior Design Presentation Day, on Wednesday, May 2, to hear a group of outstanding GMES students present their projects.

In addition to senior design, students in the Mining INovation Enterprise (MINE) will present an overview of their team’s geological engineering work with NASA to extract water from gypsum mined from Mars. All events except lunch will take place in Dow 610.

GMES Senior Design Spring 2018
Everyone’s welcome at the GMES Senior Design Presentation Day on May 2, from 7:45 am – 1 pm in Dow 610. Afterwards, join the department for lunch.

Check out the flyer for full details.

Start times and abbreviated title:
 7:45 am – Continental Breakfast & Coffee
 8:05 am – Gold Mine Design in Nevada – Group 1  (Note: both groups worked in parallel on the same project site.)
 9:05 am – Gold Mine Design in Nevada – Group 2
10:05 am – Stability of Slopes near Military Hill
11:05 am – Water Well Rehabilitation at the KBIC Fish Hatchery
12:05 pm – Mid “year” progress, Golden Eagle Mine Design
12:35 pm – Overview of GE Project Work in MINE Enterprise
  1 pm – lunch for participants & audience, Dow Atrium
The GMES Senior Capstone Design Program builds on the Department’s solid field-based, hands-on curriculum to provide students with “their first job”– a project supplied by industry, government agencies, or entrepreneurs.
Senior Design teams experience the entire process of a real-world, client-based engineering project, tackling open-ended problems that reflect the work graduates will likely encounter in their first job. Clients benefit from having a student team address their dynamic goals and tight budgets, and provide a fresh perspective with guidance from experienced faculty.

Student teams explore not only the technical facets of the area of study, but also the business of engineering, including communications, teamwork, project management, intellectual property, and ethics.


Huntoon Selected for APLU’s Council on Academic Affairs Executive Committee

Jackie Huntoon
Jackie Huntoon

Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Jackie Huntoon has been selected to serve on the Council on Academic Affairs (CAA) executive committee for the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU).

Huntoon will be a member of the executive committee’s five-person class of 2021. APLU is a research, policy and advocacy organization dedicated to strengthening and advancing the work of public universities in the United States, Canada and Mexico. APLU serves 237 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems and affiliated organizations.

APLU’s agenda is built on three pillars: increasing degree completion and academic success, advancing scientific research and expanding engagement. The association’s advocacy arm works with Congress, the presidential administration and the media to advance policies that strengthen public universities and their students.

The CAA is composed of chief academic officers, typically provosts or senior vice presidents for academic affairs where they are a campus’s second-ranking officer.

The CAA provides a forum for discussing trends in higher education and the public mission; funding patterns and budget strategies; teaching and learning innovations; faculty roles and rewards; academic programs, planning and advising; research and publication; and service and engagement with other sectors. The CAA advises the Council of Presidents and the APLU Board of Directors regarding association priorities and agendas in these areas.


2018 Fraternity and Sorority Life Awards Recognize Faculty and Staff

Cameron Hadden
Cameron Hadden

More than 300 Michigan Tech students gathered for the 12th Annual Fraternity and Sorority Life Awards Ceremony Sunday in the Memorial Union Ballroom.

In addition to the many student awards presented, Order of Omega, the Greek Life Honor Society that coordinates the awards, took the time to recognize some exceptional faculty and staff members. There are more than 560 students in fraternities and sororities at Michigan Tech, and Order of Omega wanted to emphasize that these awards were coming directly from the students.

When writing a nomination for the Outstanding Faculty Award, students were asked to consider faculty who:

  • Are dedicated to supporting students and helping them succeed academically
  • Demonstrate a passion for teaching and/or research
  • Utilize innovative teaching methods and promote academic integrity among students

When writing a nomination for the Outstanding Staff Award, students were asked to consider staff who:

  • Are dedicated to supporting students and helping them succeed both inside and outside the classroom
  • Demonstrate a passion for working with students
  • Promote and inspire the Michigan Tech values of Community, Scholarship, Possibilities, Accountability and Tenacity.

When writing a nomination for the Outstanding Advisor Award, students were asked to consider staff/faculty who:

  • Are dedicated to promoting the Michigan Tech Greek community values and chapter values
  • Are dedicated to developing leaders within the chapter; are dedicated to promoting a values-based organization
  • Promotes and role models ethical leadership and promotes academic success among members and the chapter as a whole.

The following faculty and staff members were nominated by members of the Greek community and were recognized at the 2018 Fraternity and Sorority Life Awards Ceremony

Faculty—Sean Clancey (ChE), Cameron Hadden (MEEM). Staff—Joseph Cooper (Student Financial Services), Scott Wendt (ChE). Advisors—Laura Bunzendahl-Bulleit (Dean of Students Office), Bobbie Dalquist (Financial Information Systems), James DeClerck (MEEM), Alyssa Fredin (Financial Aid).

Scott Wendt
Scott Wendt

These nominations were written by individual students and were supported by an entire fraternity or sorority. In the end, the Outstanding Faculty Award was presented to Cameron Hadden and the Outstanding Staff Award went to Scott Wendt. Advisor of the Year was awarded to Bobbie Dalquist.

Congratulations to all of these faculty and staff members who were nominated and thank you for inspiring and motivating students.

The full list of award winners and nominees can be found on the student activities website.

By Student Activities.


Dean’s Teaching Showcase: Tony Rogers

Tony Rogers
Tony Rogers

Our second-to-last Deans’ Teaching Showcase member for this spring is Tony Rogers, associate professor in Chemical Engineering and co-advisor of the Consumer Product Manufacturing Enterprise.

He was nominated by Chair Pradeep Agrawal and selected by College of Engineering Dean Wayne Pennington for his long and excellent history of teaching in three “real-world” aspects of the chemical engineering undergraduate curriculum: Enterprise, the Unit Operations Lab and the Capstone Design course.

Rogers has taught the capstone plant design course (Process Analysis & Design) for senior-year students since 1993. He draws on his industrial design experience at Research Triangle Institute (RTI, Durham, North Carolina) working under contract for industrial clients.

Agrawal comments on Rogers’ unique focus within this course, saying “While safety and environmental constraints are critical to chemical process design, all project investments are based on economic considerations. Professor Rogers sees to it that chemical engineering students graduate with this important perspective and speak the language of cash-flow analyses and profitability. Economics is the deciding factor when choosing between competing technical options.”

Rogers has also been advising Consumer Product Manufacturing (CPM) since the Enterprise program first began in 2000. His goal in this role is to give students further industry insight through internship-like experience with corporate sponsors during the regular academic semester. Rogers observes, “It is a fun challenge in all of my courses to keep the students engaged in an era of advancing computer technology and entertainment. The trick is to realize that there are no short-cuts for the hard work of mastering engineering concepts. I try to contribute to my department’s goal of turning out industry-ready graduates who are ready to work.”

Pennington himself echoes this same practical, balanced focus in summarizing his selection, but emphasizes Rogers’ work in a third area—the Unit Operations lab. In Pennington’s words, “Every visitor to the Chemical Engineering Department comes away impressed with the Unit Operations lab and the hands-on training that our students receive, in addition to the usual formal education in the discipline. This relationship to the ‘real world’ of industrial (or research) chemical engineering practice has been largely driven by the initiatives and perseverance of Dr. Tony Rogers over the years. His combination of practical considerations, including safety, environment and economics, with the goal of production on a schedule and within specifications, is unique among undergraduate educational practices. Tony helps make Michigan Tech the respected institution that it is.”

Rogers’ long and successful history will be recognized at an end-of-term luncheon with other showcase members. He is now eligible for one of three new teaching awards to be given by the William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning this summer, recognizing introductory or large-class teaching, innovative or outside-the-classroom teaching methods, or work in curriculum and assessment.


Biomedical Engineering Students Win at Stryker Engineering Challenge

BME StudentsA team of biomedical engineering students from Michigan Tech took first place in the Eighth Annual Stryker Engineering Challenge competition in Kalamazoo, March 22/23, 2018.

Each team member will receive a $1,000 scholarship and an interview for a Summer 2019 Internship with Stryker Corporation, a medical technology company. Each year Stryker invites engineering student teams to its global headquarters to show off their engineering prowess while competing against rival schools.

During overnight competition, teams spent 12 hours planning, designing, prototyping and testing to prepare for a robotics challenge created by Stryker engineers.

This year, six universities competed. In addition to Tech, teams came from Notre Dame, Western Michigan University, Michigan College Alliance, Purdue and Miami of Ohio.

Michigan Tech was the only biomedical engineering team in the competition. All other teams were comprised of mechanical and electrical engineering students. Undergraduates Becky Daniels, Melanie Thomas, Emil Johnson and Nicholas Turowski made up the Michigan Tech team.

 Joe Thompson, associate director, industry engagement in Michigan Tech’s Pavlis Honors College traveled with the students and served as mentor. Biomedical Engineering Associate Department Chair and Professor Keat Ghee Ong is the team’s advisor.

Biomedical Engineering Department Chair Sean Kirkpatrick said “Last year was BME’s first year in the Stryker competition and we took second place. This year’s first-place finish shows last year wasn’t a fluke—Michigan Tech BME students are very capable engineering students who can handily solve classical engineering problems.”

Thompson adds, “The event organizers at Stryker made a point of highlighting the professionalism displayed by Michigan Tech team. The ability to adapt to changing circumstances and collectively persevere contributed to the team’s success this year.”

Michigan Tech's robot at the 2018 Stryker Engineering Challenge
Michigan Tech’s robot at the Eighth Annual Stryker Engineering Challenge in Kalamazoo, Michigan

The first half of the competition involved picking up small Lego people with the robot and transporting them to the team’s ‘pit stop’. The team was able to deliver a ‘VIP passenger’ to gain extra points, but then their robot arm malfunctioned, sinking them from 1st place to 4th place as a result. The second half of the competition involved an actual race throughout the course. Michigan Tech’s robot had the fastest time.

“It was exciting to see how our ideas came to life, and how prototypes became the actual parts that contributed to our victory,” says Thomas. “It was a constant reminder of why we chose to pursue engineering.”

“The best feelings came whenever a team member was stuck with a particular problem and another team member’s suggestion turned out to be the working solution. During the competition we learned how to work with nearly complete strangers. We adapted once we figured out each other’s strengths,” says Johnson.

“Throughout the challenge we all provided whatever insight we could if we noticed someone struggling with a task, and it was always without judgement,” adds Daniels.

“Every employee at Stryker seemed to love their job,” notes Turowski. “One told about how during his first year at Stryker he was put on a team of ‘vets’ and asked to complete a task that had never before been done. I think that shows how much confidence Stryker has in its employees.”

“You don’t have to know the people you’re working with for a very long time in order to be an effective team. You just need to set your eyes on a collective goal and work to successfully complete it.

– Melanie Thomas

Stryker Corporation, active in more than 100 countries, is one of the world’s leading medical technology companies, offering products and services to help improve patient and hospital outcomes.

Michigan Tech BME students Emil Johnson, Nicholas Turowski, Melanie Thomas, and Becky Daniels along with mentor Joe Thompson at the 2018 Stryker Engineering Challenge, where they took first place.
Michigan Tech BME students Emil Johnson, Nicholas Turowski, Melanie Thomas, and Becky Daniels along with mentor Joe Thompson at the 8th Annual Stryker Engineering Challenge, where they took first place.

2018 Portage Health Foundation Making a Difference Scholarship Recipients

Portage Health FoundationTwelve students have been awarded the Portage Health Foundation Making a Difference Scholarship. The scholarships are part of a Michigan Tech-Portage Health Foundation partnership established in 2015 to support health education. This year’s recipients have an average GPA of 3.87 and represent the breadth of health-related research happening on Michigan Tech’s campus.

The $8,000 scholarships went to:

  •    Bailey Poyhonen, Dollar Bay, medical laboratory science
  •    Brennah Wasie, Hancock, biochemistry and molecular biology
  •    Laura Lyons, Lake Linden, biomedical engineering
  •    Sarah Dix, L’Anse, exercise science

Receiving $1,000 scholarships were:

  •    Kierstyn Codere, Lake Linden, biological sciences
  •    Grace Liu, Houghton mechanical engineering
  •    Mara Hackman, Houghton, medical laboratory science.
  •    Jaden Janke, Dollar Bay, biological sciences
  •    Ally Fenton, Hancock, biomedical engineering
  •    Jada Markham, Houghton, exercise science
  •    Kellan Heikkila, Chassell, biomedical engineering
  •    Dawson Kero, Hancock, biological sciences

“The merit-based awards reflect the high caliber student talent we have locally, thanks to exceptional teachers, HOSA high school advisers, and Michigan Tech faculty and students who do outreach in the schools,” says Jodi Lehman, director of foundations at Michigan Tech.

At a dinner for finalists, the scholarship recipients had a chance to talk one-on-one with Michigan Tech researchers. Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics faculty Ye Sarah Sun shared with students how she develops new interfaces for heart monitoring that are reliable and won’t disturb a patient’s life at home, while driving or at work.

Biomedical engineer and health care entrepreneur, Megan Frost, shared  how she is working to improve wound care with a product designed to prevent infection and reduce the need for some post-acute care.

Scholarship recipients also heard from current students, Adison Cook, a 2016 Making a Difference scholar; Stephanie Bean and Maddie Morley, both PHF Undergraduate Research Interns; and Kelsey Saladin, a Portage Health Foundation and Randy Owsley Memorial Athletic trainer scholar.

 

“The Portage Health Foundation has also been very generous in granting need-based scholarships to students enrolling at Michigan Tech, Finlandia University, Gogebic College, Northern Michigan University, and Michigan State University in health-related degree programs,” says Joe Cooper, Director of Financial Aid at Michigan Tech, “These scholarships make a significant financial impact for students in our own local communities.  Thanks to the Portage Health Foundation, students from Baraga, Houghton, Keweenaw, and Ontonagon counties have extra support so they can attend college and focus on health related careers.”

Portage Health Foundation Making a Difference Scholarship applications will open in the fall for incoming high school seniors and transfer students applying to Michigan Tech for fall 2019.  Questions about the scholarship can be directed to Rachel Connors, assistant director of admissions, 7-1880.

By Foundation Relations.


Judges Needed for Design Expo 2018

Judges and students mingle in front of posters.We invite you to register to be a judge at the 2018 Design Expo on Thursday, April 19. The Expo highlights hands-on projects from more than 600 students on Enterprise and Senior Design teams.

Although special expertise is appreciated, judges are not required to be technological specialists or engineers. If you like engaging with students and learning more about the exciting projects they are working on, please consider judging.

Who should judge?

  • Community members
  • Michigan Tech faculty and staff
  • Alumni interested in seeing what today’s students are accomplishing as undergrads
  • Those looking to network with Michigan Tech faculty and students
  • Industry representatives interested in sponsoring a future project

Design Expo is co-hosted by the College of Engineering and the Pavlis Honors College.

If you would like to serve as a judge at this year’s Design Expo, registeras soon as possible to let us know you’re coming. Thank you for your continued support.

By Pavlis Honors College.


2018 SURF Award Recipients in Engineering

SURF graphicThe Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program will fund 25 students from across the University with funds from the office of the Pavlis Honors College and the Vice President for Research.

Previous SURF award recipients have included Goldwater Scholarship and NSF Graduate Research Fellowship recipients. Since 2002, SURF students have co-authored 78 peer reviewed publications.

This year’s recipients, project titles, and advisors are listed online.

Honorable Mention went to Kiaya Caspers, Travis Durgan, Elisha Earley and Ashley Lingle.

By Will Cantrell.

Biomedical Engineering Majors

Stephanie Jewell
Biomedical Engineering / Mechanical
William Cook / KIP
Controlled Breathing and Automatic Cardiovascular Control

Kaylee Meyers
Rupak Rajachar / Biomedical Engineering
Evaluating the Influence of Matrix Stiffness on the Activation of MMPs in Tendinopathy

Alexander Oliver
Jeremy Goldman / Biomedical Engineering
Characterizing the Inflammatory Response to Zinc Stent Materials

Brennan Vogl
Smitha Rao / Biomedical Engineering
Monitoring migration of cancer cells using a microfluidic device

Chemical Engineering Major

Satyen Dhamankar
Chemical Engineering / Mathematics
Benjamin Ong / Mathematical Sciences
Accelerated Boundary Integral Methods

Civil Engineering Major

Timothy Stone
Don Lafreniere / Social Sciences
Exploring the Social Determinants of health and Disease Outbreak Patterns in Children in Early Twentieth Century Calumet

Geological Engineering Major

Katelyn Kring
Snehamoy Chatterjee / GMES
Spatial Interpolation of Rock Quality Designation to Design Underground Support System for Eagle Mine

Mechanical Engineering Majors

Dennis J Byard
Joshua Pearce / Materials Science
Increasing Maker Manufacturing through 3D Printing with Reclaimed Plastic & Direct Drive Pellet Extrusion

Aaron Dean
Pasi Lautala / Civil and Environmental Engineering
Using Naturalistic Driving Data and Machine Learning to Predict Accident Risk at Highway-Rail Grade Crossings

Eric Houck
Mo Rastgaar / Mechanical Engineering
Magneto-Rheological Fluids Create a Natural Walking Gait in Ankle-Foot Prostheses


David Ross and Alex Baker Place in Undergraduate Research Symposium 2018

URS logoThe Pavlis Honors College (PHC) announces the winners of the sixth Annual Undergraduate Research Symposium.

The students that presented this year represented a wide array of scientific and engineering disciplines from across campus and highlighted the diversity of research areas being explored. Judges from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines volunteered their time to evaluate participant posters and presentations. The results were as follows:

First Place: Erinn Smith, Chemistry
Second Place: David Ross, Biomedical Engineering
Third Place: Alex Baker, Civil and Environmental Engineering

David Ross presented Bioactive polydimethylsiloxane surface for optimal human
mesenchymal stem cell sheet culture
. Ross’ advisor is Feng Zhao.

Alex Baker presented Multiobjective Optimization of Cost and Strength for Various
Lengths of Doubly Reinforced Concrete T-beams. Baker’s advisor is Amlan Mukherjee.

PHC would also like to recognize three students in the Honorable Mention category: Benjamin Miller, SFRES, Rose Turner, Environmental Engineering and Hannah Cunningham, Molecular Biology and Genetics.

The research presented here is sponsored in part by the Office of the Vice President of
Research, the Portage Health Foundation (PHFoundation), the Pavlis Honors College, and the Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program.

Congratulations to all of our winners and honorable mentions. Thank you to all of the faculty, staff and students that judged and attended the Symposium this year.

Original story by Pavlis Honors College.


Dean’s Teaching Showcase: Yongmei Jin

Yongmei M. Jin
Yongmei M. Jin

College of Engineering Dean Wayne Pennington has chosen to recognize Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) Associate Professor Yongmei Jin as this week’s Deans’ Teaching Showcase member.

MSE Chair Steve Kampe nominated Jin because of her unique ability to help students through courses that provide obstacles for many students.  Kampe explains, “Yongmei teaches some of our more math-intensive courses within the MSE curriculum, and does so in a way that eliminates anxiety and the mental blocks that this typically presents for certain students.”

Jin provides exceptional teaching at all levels in the MSE curriculum.  At the sophomore level, she is lead instructor (team-taught by three faculty) in Intro to MSE.  In this course, she teaches a mathematical description of crystallography – content that typically does not appear in undergraduate materials curricula. Part of the motivation is to use this materials-based application to improve general math skills for students, and to support a curriculum thread in computational materials science skills.

Jin also teaches upper-division courses like Materials Processing II, where concepts of transport phenomena (heat, fluid, mass) involving calculus and differential equations are introduced, practiced, and solutions made routine.  Graduating seniors often identify Jin as one of the most effective instructors in the department during exit interviews with the chair.

Finally, she teaches a graduate level core (required) course in material properties where students learn how to mathematical describe properties that obey tensor mathematics.  Kampe summarizes by saying, “Yongmei quietly and adeptly leads the instruction of these several critical courses in a way that is effective for student learning and success. Students describe her classroom as enabling and a confidence-building experience.”

Pennington, for his part, emphasizes that he chose Jin because he sees a tremendous need for instructors to get the level right with regard to mathematics. “We frequently hear that students are frustrated by not understanding how mathematics is incorporated into their specific discipline—this often comes about because instructors find it difficult to use higher math in their lectures without confusing or alienating students. Not so in Dr Yongmei Jin’s classes, thank goodness. She is known for incorporating math in the classroom in ways that make it straightforward for students to see the connections without getting lost in the details, and to have confidence in their ability to master and make use of the math required in their field.  We all have something to learn from her approach.”

Jin will be recognized at an end-of-term luncheon with other showcase members, and is now eligible for one of three new teaching awards to be given by the William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning this summer, recognizing introductory or large class teaching, innovative or outside the classroom teaching methods, or work in curriculum and assessment.

By Michael R. Meyer Director – William G. Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning.