Tag Archives: alumni

Captain Amanda Nerg ’10 Recieves Michigan Tech’s Outstanding Young Alumni Award

Nerg, Amanda Capt photoThis award is presented each year to alumni under the age of 35 who have distinguished themselves in their career. The award recognizes the achievement of a position or some distinction noteworthy for one so recently graduated.

Captain Amanda (Taylor) Nerg ’10 believes in leaving a place better than when you arrived.

“Your actions will affect those around you and you can be that guiding force in creating a better future for those who come after us.”

For Nerg attending Tech was coming home. During her childhood, she lived near Tech while her mom served as the commander for the Air Force ROTC. “When we moved I missed everything about the area. When I began my search for a college, I only applied to one school, Michigan Tech. It was exciting to return to the place I had once called home.”

Nerg received a bachelor of science degree in business administration in 2010. In 2014, she earned her master of business administration at the Naval Postgraduate School.

She says the training she received at Michigan Tech prepared her for a career in the Air Force. Her first assignment she served as a contract administrator at Grand Forks Air Force Base in North Dakota where she managed a $7.6 million architect-engineer services program.

“Michigan Tech instilled a passion for innovation and creative thinking. The Air Force ROTC program guided me to become a strong leader and follower in the military. Alpha Gamma Delta taught me the values of living with purpose and impacting the world. Every class, every extracurricular activity provided the foundation for who I am today.”

Nerg is the Chief of Contracting Office at Moron Air Base in Spain, where she supports multiple Air Force, Marine, and NATO missions. While working on her master’s degree at the Naval Postgraduate School, she says her analytical background from Tech calculus and statistics classes helped create her thesis on geospatial information systems (GIS) and their use in humanitarian and disaster response, developing a transportation routing model for fuels distribution.

She says she has many fond memories from Tech include meeting her husband, Steve Nerg ’11. The couple has been married for more than six years.

Tech helped Nerg discover who she wanted to be. “Everything you do and have done at this university has shaped you into who you are today. Aspire to be your best and do your job with integrity and passion.”


Meet Tim Spehar…

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Tim Spehar is a spring 2017 graduate of our engineering management major! He recalls visiting a series of universities during his junior year of high school. He and his Dad traveled around the state of Michigan before making it up to the U.P. to check out Michigan Tech’s School of Business and Economics.  During his visit, Tim found exactly what he was looking for: the opportunity to combine both business and technical skills into one program. When he left his campus visit, Tim knew he had chosen his college! He knew he would be coming to Michigan Tech to major in engineering management.

Tim’s four years on campus were packed with classes, involvement in student organizations, and playing outside. As he reflects on his experiences, he came up with some advice he would like to share with future students:

  1. Academics come first. College chemistry is a lot more difficult than high school. When arriving on campus Tim was used to being able to get good grades without putting in extensive study time. Even if you’re at the top of your high school class, you are going to need to devote more time to your studies in college.
  2. Get outside your comfort zone. In his first year of college Tim’s roommate was a guy he went to high school with. Although they came to school together, Tim said he was surprised at how quickly he branched out and met new friends. “It is important to get out and meet people during orientation week when everyone is trying to find their place on campus.” He advises getting to know your neighbors in the residence hall. When Tim moved off campus, he moved into a house with guys that lived near him in Wadsworth Hall.
  3. Pick up new hobbies. Tim played rugby and lacrosse in high school, but when he started at Michigan Tech he decided not to play on the club teams here. Instead, he got involved in starting a new student organization on campus! American Society for Engineering Management (ASEM). Tim worked closely with both Dr. Dana Johnson and Roger Woods and became the first president of the Michigan Tech chapter of ASEM. This organization is a student based chapter of a national organization that is centered around raising awareness of engineering management as a profession.
  4.  Attend every career fair. You just never know who you are going to meet. During the fall career fair of his senior year, Tim was waiting in a long line to talk to a recruiter from a company he was interested in.  While he was waiting in line he started reading information on a nearby table for a different company. He ended up going to their table and talking to a representative for Therma-Tron-X Inc. After talking a while he was offered an interview for the next morning.  It wasn’t long before Tim was invited down to their office in Wisconsin and ultimately was offered a job.

Tim has already started his position as Project Engineer at Therma-Tron-X Inc. and has been enjoying his first few weeks on the job. On behalf of the School of Business and Economics, we congratulate him and wish him the best on his future endeavors! If you’d like to get in touch with Tim please feel free to send him an Email at tmspehar@mtu.edu, or follow him on Instagram @the_cycling_engeineer

Tim commencement with parents


Presidential Council of Alumnae Panel

We are pleased to announce that the School of Business and Economics will be hosting a panel discussion on Thursday, September 22, 2016 at 3:30 – 4:30 pm in the Memorial Union Building Alumni Lounge.  The panel is open to all members of the community.  Light refreshments will be served.

The panel will consist of members of the Michigan Tech Presidential Council of Alumnae.

This year’s panelist includes the following:

Denise Blankinship – Vice President, Strategic Projects, The Church Pension Group

Michele Blau – Senior Manager of IBM Cloud Engagement and Enablement

Marie Cleveland – Worldwide Account Manager, FedEx Services

Carrie Schaller – Business Process Director – Manufacturing Operations, Dow Chemical

Joyce Ten Haken – Manageing Partner/CPA, Ten Haken, Hinz & Company Accountancy Corporation

Moderators/facilitators for the panel discussion will include:

Suzanne Sanregret – Athletic Director, Michigan Tech

Dana Johnson – Professor of Supply Chain and Engineering Management, Michigan Tech

Darnishia Slade – Director of International Career Education, Michigan Tech


Justin Fitch Memorial Ruck

Last October, Michigan Tech alumni Justin Fitch lost his battle with cancer. Fitch graduated Cum Laude in 2005 with a BS in Business Administration 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.

Visit the Facebook page or sign up to begin fundraising.

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Alumni Spotlight – Maggie Chen

Maggie Chen ’04 recently presented at Goldman Sach’s Alternative Investment Conference in Hong Kong.  There were over 150 people in attendance, and her panel was highly ranked among attendees.

After completing her BS in Business Administration at Michigan Tech, Maggie earned her MBA from Yale University in 2010.  She has also spent time working at China’s SAFE Investment Company, AIG and Morgan Stanley before she assumed her current role as Head of Portfolio Management at Junson Capital Company Limited in Hong Kong.