Category: Alumni

How to Succeed as a Freshman

Michelle Jarvie-Eggart

Michelle Jarvie-Eggart, a Michigan Tech graduate and a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Engineering Fundamentals, along with environmental engineering students, Amanda Singer and Jason Mathews, discuss the transition for first year students and tools that can make the transition easier.

Jarvie-Eggart, M. E., & Singer, A. M., & Mathews, J. (2019, July), Advice from a First Year Paper presented at 2019 FYEE Conference , Penn State University , Pennsylvania. https://peer.asee.org/33674

Extract

Much attention is paid to the transition from high school to college. Students who have recently gone through this transition may have some of the best advice to offer in-coming first year students.

Themes which emerged in this study, which corroborate other research include: time management, utilizing resources, hard work, class attendance, social activates and persevering through lower grades.


Becker Elected Chair of the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors Foundation

Dr. Jennifer G. Becker, Associate Professor of Environmental Engineering, was elected Chair of the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors Foundation (AEESP Foundation). Becker was elected to the AEESP Foundation Board of Directors in 2019, and her three-year term as Chair of the Foundation began in January, 2020.

The Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors (AEESP) is an international organization with over 800 members, most of whom are environmental engineering and science professors. The AEESP Foundation supports and encourages excellence in environmental engineering and science education, outreach, and scientific research by sponsoring a distinguished lecturer series, awarding K-12 educational and outreach grants, and endowing and administering award programs for professors and students.

Becker has a distinguished record of service to the environmental engineering community. She served as a member of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Science Advisory Board’s Environmental Engineering Committee from 2016 until the committee was retired in 2018. She was elected by her environmental engineering and science academic peers to the AEESP Board of Directors in 2010. While on the AEESP Board of Directors, Becker was also elected to several AEESP officer positions, including President of AEESP (2013-2014).

Becker is one of several current and former Michigan Tech faculty members who have been recognized by the AEESP and the AEESP Foundation for their outstanding achievements in research, education, and/or professional service. The list of awards given to current and former Michigan Tech faculty by the AEESP/AEESP Foundation and/or Environmental Engineering Science (the official peer-reviewed journal of AEESP) include:

C. Robert Baillod (deceased)
2012 Perry L. McCarty AEESP Founder’s Award (received posthumously)


Jennifer G. Becker
1993 AEESP Master’s Thesis Award (First Place, Student with advisor David L. Freedman)
2006 AEESP Master’s Thesis Award (Second Place, Advisor with student Ilisa A. Tawney)
2010 AEESP Distinguished Service Award for Outstanding Service as Chair of the AEESP Awards Committee
2014 AEESP Distinguished Service Award for Outstanding Service as AEESP President and AEESP Board Member


John C. Crittenden (Now at Georgia Institute of Technology)
2000 AEESP Outstanding Publication Award (for Crittenden, J.C., Hand, D.W., Arora, H., and B.W. Lykins, Jr., “Design Considerations for GAC Treatment of Organic Chemicals,” J. Amer. Water Works Assn. 79 (1) 74-82, 1987.)


David W. Hand (Emeritus Professor)
2000 AEESP Outstanding Publication Award (for Crittenden, J.C., Hand, D.W., Arora, H., and B.W. Lykins, Jr., “Design Considerations for GAC Treatment of Organic Chemicals,” J. Amer. Water Works Assn. 79 (1) 74-82, 1987.)
2006 AEESP Award for Outstanding Teaching in Environmental Engineering & Science


James R. Mihelcic (now at the University of South Florida)
1988 Paul V. Roberts/AEESP Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award (Student with advisor Richard G. Luthy)
2002 AEESP Award for Outstanding Environmental Engineering & Science Education
2011 AEESP Master’s Thesis Award Advisor with student Cynthia Shafer) 2018 Charles R. O’Melia Distinguished Educator Award


Judith A. Perlinger (Professor)
2017 Environmental Engineering Science Editors’ Spotlight (for Blaney L., Kandiah R., Ducoste J.J., Perlinger J.A., Bartelt-Hunt S.L. “Trends in Population and Demographics of U.S. Environmental Engineering Students and Faculty from 2005 to 2013,” Environmental Engineering Science. 2016, 33(8): 578-590.)


Eric A. Seagren (Professor) 1995 AEESP Outstanding Doctoral Dissertation Award (Student with advisor Bruce E. Rittmann)


MTTI Members Active at TRB

Members of the Michigan Tech Transportation Institute (MTTI) were active at the 2020 Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting held recently in Washington, DC.

Tim Colling (CTT) organized and presented at the TRB half day workshop titled “Developments in Low-Volume Road Management”. The presentation was “Asset Management Plans for Low Volume Roads – Why Should I Bother? Colling also attended the committee meeting ANB25: “Highway Safety Performance”, of which he is a member.

Jake Hiller (CEE) attended the International Society for Concrete Pavement’s (ISCP) Open Membership and Board meeting as Vice-President and President-Elect on Sunday evening of TRB.

Sangpil Ko (CEE) gave a presentation on his research “Data-driven Study on the Log Movements for the Upper Midwest: Impact of Rail Car Fleet Size” at the lectern session that discussed on the current research in Agriculture and Food Transportation. He also participated in several poster/lectern sessions including the AR040 Freight Rail Transportation Committee meeting.

Pasi Lautala (CEE) chaired a meeting by the AR040 Freight Rail Transportation Committee. He also participated in the meetings of the Freight Transportation Group Executive Board and Rail Transportation Group Executive Board and presided over two sessions by AR040.

Amlan Mukherjee (CEE) presented on “Best Practices in Life-cycle Assessment of Asphalt Mixtures”, at the International Society of Asphalt Pavements meeting, participated in a collaboration meeting with construction equipment manufacturers hosted by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) on their ongoing research effort, co-chaired a workshop titled “Evolution of Project Delivery Information Systems: Where We Were and Where We Are Headed”. Mukherjee also serves on standing committee on Construction Management (AFH10), and is a secretary for the sub-committee on Information Systems in Construction Management (AFH10(1)).

PhD student Chaitanya G. Bhat presented two posters co-authored by Amlan Mukherjee at the session Life-Cycle Assessment and Climate Resilience of Pavements. The posters were titled “Technical and Organizational Challenges for the Use of Environmental Product Declarations in Public Procurement” and “Technical and Organizational Challenges to Developing Product Category Rules for Asphalt Pavement Construction”.

Dave Nelson (RTP) attended the AR080, Standing Committee on Highway-Rail Grade Crossings meeting.

Dr. Zhanping You attended the TRB meeting, serving as a moderator of a lecture session on “The Science of Snowfighting” and a poster session on asphalt binders. He also moderated the ASCE Bituminous Materials Committee(BMC).  He accepted a new role as the Vice President of the International Association of Chinese Infrastructure Professionals (IACIP) and co-presented a number of papers and posters such as “Measurement and Modeling of Skid Resistance of Asphalt Pavement: A Review”, “Development of a Tire-Pavement Dynamic Friction Analyzer for Investigation of the Dynamic Friction Coefficient Between Tire and Pavement” and “Fourier Transformation Infra-Red Spectroscopic Analyses of Modified Asphalt Binders”.

A lectern lecture was given by Thomas Oommen (GMES) on “Remote terrain Strength for Mobility Characterization” at lectern Session 1384: Integration of Remote Sensing Techniques and Classical Instrumentation.

CEE student Reihaneh Samsami attended several technical committee meetings and technical sessions.

Prof. Eric Seagren (CEE) participated as the session chair of the lectern session 1116 on “Bio-mediated Enhancement of Transportation Materials and Infrastructure,” which was sponsored by the Standing Committee on Geo-Environmental Processes (AFP40). Prof. Seagren also participated as a member of the AFP40 Committee at their meeting at which he gave a presentation entitled, “Laboratory Simulation of Cold-Weather Fugitive Dust Events at Mine Tailings Impoundments and Mitigation Methods,” co-authored by Drs. Bonnie Zwissler (CEE), Stanley Vitton (CEE), and Thomas Oommen (GMES).

by Pam Hannon


Alumni Present at MITA 2020

Taylor (Garbe) Rudlaff and Michael Prast
Taylor (Garbe) Rudlaff and Michael Prast

Recent civil engineering graduates Michael Prast and Taylor (Garbe) Rudlaff presented the work of the Senior Design groups who developed the original concept of a utility tunnel under the Mackinac Straits at the MITA 2020 Annual Conference meeting on January 21-24 in Mt. Pleasant, MI. Mike Nystrom, Executive Director of MITA, the Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Association, participated in the presentation by giving an update of the utility tunnel project and the current political climate impacting the project. Prast and Rudlaff spoke to a packed room of industry representatives who were impressed with the quality of the senior design experience provided by Michigan Tech. Audra Morse encouraged industry members to build partnerships with higher education and use real world projects, just like the utility tunnel under the Mackinac Straits, to bridge the gap between education and industry so that we recruit and retain the best and brightest in our profession.

Bruce Lowing, (80’) received the MITA Honorary Member Designation for his contribution to the construction industry and his service to MITA. To all of our alumni that attend MITA, it was good to see you and thanks for supporting Michigan Tech.

MITA 2020
MITA 2020

New Structural Engineering Institute at Michigan Tech is First in Michigan

Beginning this year, the Structural Engineering Institute (SEI) of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) is now in Michigan! Graduate students in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Michigan Technological University have founded the first SEI group in the state of Michigan: the SEI Graduate Student Chapter at MTU. SEI consists of local groups and graduate student chapters, and is now located in 33 out of the 50 states, as well as in Washington DC, Puerto Rico, Mexico and Israel. The mission of the new MTU chapter is to help educate young professionals in the field of Structural Engineering by providing a collaborative environment for technical innovation, while encouraging lifelong professional growth and development.
The SEI Graduate Student Chapter here at MTU is geared towards graduate students but open to undergraduates as well, and is looking for new student members to kick off its inaugural year. Student members will have opportunities to network with structural engineering professionals, have access to technical presentations and webinars, and collaborate with other structures-focus students and professionals. If you are a student and would like to join, click the “New Member” link on our website.
To further the goal of professional growth, the SEI Graduate Student Chapter is also open to MTU alumni as associate members. The SEI Graduate Student Chapter aims to connect the current student body with alumni in their field, which will enrich the education of students and provide an opportunity for alumni to give back to MTU. If you are an alum in structural engineering and would like to partner with the graduate student chapter, please contact our leadership board.
The current leadership of the SEI Graduate Student Chapter is Arman Tatar as Chair, Nabhajit Goswami as Vice-Chair, Julie Bouwens as Secretary, Alex Baker as Treasurer, and Dr. Daniel Dowden as Faculty Advisor. If you would like to learn more, visit our website at cee.mtu.edu/sei.


Alumnus Ryan Rasmussen Creates a Cool Place to Work

Ryan Rasmussen
Ryan Rasmussen

Ryan Rasmussen, MS, PE, is founder and CEO of Fieldstone Architecture & Engineering, headquartered in Auburn Hills, MI. His business has recently been named on Crain’s Top 100 Cool Places to Work in Detroit. Fieldstone A&E is a full-service architecture, engineering, and interior design solution for big builders.

Rasmussen has BS and MS degrees in Civil Engineering from Michigan Tech. He established Fieldstone A&E with the following office culture:

Having passion, Opening your mind, Mastering your craft, and Embracing family spirit – known to us as H.O.M.E.

According to Crain’s, this is why Fieldstone A&E is cool:

  • Semi-monthly game night
  • Monthly beer cart Fridays
  • Employees are awarded annually for fulfilling the company’s core values

Read more at the Fieldstone Blog.

St. Patty's Day at Fieldstone
St. Patty’s Day at Fieldstone

Picnic at Fieldstone
Picnic at Fieldstone


Tampa Alumni Event

 

The Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, in collaboration with the Office of Advancement and Alumni Relations, held an alumni event at Maloney’s Pub and Bar to watch the Red Wings battle the Tampa Bay Lightnings.  The event brought together almost 30 alumni and rekindled that ol’ Michigan Tech feeling. Chuck Laurila (BSCE ’59), accompanied by his wife Phyllis, received a hearty round of applause as the most senior MTU graduate in attendance .  Dennis Luoto (‘68 BSCE grad) and his wife Randi, traveling from The Villages, were recognized for traveling the furthest to attend the event. BSCE ‘82 graduate Bill Matkin (or Capt. William Matkin) reunited with two former Army ROTC cadets, Renee Mintz and Rhonda Mintz, both BSME ‘95.  Bill, Renee and Rhonda had not seen each other in over 20 years. No matter how long it had been since they last stepped foot on campus, the Michigan Tech experience brought this new group of friends together. The night fostered good times and good laughs. If you are interested in hosting a Michigan Tech alumni event please contact alumni engagement at 906-487-2400 or go to the following alumni chapter website here Alumni Chapters.

 

While visiting Tech alumni in Florida, Audra Morse, Department Chair, and Marney Kloote, Director of Advancement for the School of Business and the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, met with Doug Geiger, P.E.  (BSCE ‘83), Nick Everson, P.E. (BSCE ‘06), and Bill Downey, P.E. (BSCE ’96) of RS&H at the Wakiva Parkway SR 429 project.  The new 6 mile stretch of elevated divided highway replacing SR 46 and CR 46A just north of Orlando, includes 3 CIP segmental bridge river crossings and 9 conventional bridge wildlife crossings. While easing traffic demands on the existing one lane county road, the project seeks to reduce the number of car accidents involving black bears, who call the Seminole State Forest home.  The project also includes a multi-use trail along CR 46A, nearly 22,000 lineal feet of MSE wall, and a vegetative buffer along a portion of the roadway to reduce drainage, lighting and visibility.

 

The CEE Department is grateful to RS&H for their generous $10,000 gift for three years to support the instruction of the materials lab class.  Many alumni know this class by the name of “smash lab”.


Sara Schooley ’03 on Family Biking

Sara SchooleyMichigan Tech Alumna Sara Schooley was the subject of the feature article “Family biking profile: Sara Schooley is sure you’ll like e-bikes too,” in BikePortland.org. Schooley graduated 2003 with a BS in Environmental Engineering.

Family biking profile: Sara Schooley is sure you’ll like e-bikes too

Tell us a little about yourself and your family:

I’m mom in a family of four and we live in the Overlook Neighborhood. We have two kiddos – Tobin (2) and Holly (4). Jonathan (dad) works in Vancouver for the Forest Service. I work as a part-time bike and pedestrian planner for Toole Design Group downtown. Both of our kids are in daycare downtown near my work and are off with me on Tuesdays and Fridays.

Have you biked in other cities and how did it compare?

I started biking in college in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, at Michigan Tech. We were covered in snow for much of the year, but they sanded the roads, so we found that biking with zip-ties on our tires worked well. It was also a super-safe place theft-wise, so we could leave our bikes wherever all over the town without a lock. I routinely leaned mine against a random tree near campus (but a little bit off campus, so I didn’t have to bike up a hill on my way home). The only time it got moved was when my parents were visiting and thought that somebody stole it, so put it in the back of their car. Getting your bike stolen it just a horrible feeling (it’s happened to me a couple of times since), and I miss this sense of security so much!

Read the full article at BikePortland.org, by Madi Carlson (Family Biking Columnist).


Raine Gardner ’05 is a 2018 Young Professional of the Year

Raine Gardner
Raine Gardner ’05

MSA is proud to announce that Raine Gardner, senior project engineer for the firm, has been awarded with a Young Professional of the Year Award from the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC).

The award recognizes the accomplishments of young Professional Engineers (PEs) who have made significant contributions to the industry and to the greater society. Gardner was recommended by the ACEC Wisconsin chapter and is the first from the state to be recognized.

Raine holds a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Michigan Technological University and a master’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Read more at MSA Professional Services.


Scott Conners ’92 to Serve as the President of the Michigan Society of Professional Engineers

Scott Conners
Scott Conners ’92

1992 alumnus Scott Conners, PE, will serve as the President of NSPE-MI, the National Society of Professional Engineers in Michigan.

Conners has a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering and holds many certifications related to municipal government. He has been the city engineer in Walker for the last 20 years, after having worked as a consultant for eight years with a variety of clients and projects across west Michigan. Scott previously served as Western Regional Vice President for MSPE and Western Chapter President, and currently serves as the chairman of the Professional Engineers in Government statewide committee.

Conners is a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Grand Valley Metro Council, the Grand Rapids Charter Township Planning Commission and Site Plan Review Committee, and many other organizations. In addition to the bachelor of science degree, he holds a master’s degree in organizational management from the University of Phoenix.

In 2017 Conners won the Michigan Engineer of the Year Award from NSPE-MI. Scott is described as a dedicated, hardworking engineer, outstanding in professional abilities and endless willingness to volunteer. He is well respected among his peers with esteemed reputation for leadership.