MTU students help provide fresh vegetables for needy families

As part of 2022 Make A Difference Day, ten enthusiastic Michigan Tech students from Delta Zeta Sorority and Beta Sigma Theta Fraternity helped dig more than 400 pounds of carrots, rutabagas, and beets from a local farm for distribution to needy families through the Western UP Food Bank and Salvation Army in Houghton and Hancock.

Students came from the following departments:
Sam Griswold and Dominic Sobcinski, Electrical & Computer Engineering;*Corbin Sullivan, Civil Engineering; Samantha Ludwick, Chemistry; Emma Quinn, Materials Science; Hunter Malinowski Computer Science and Psychology;  Emily Kughn, College of Business; Lauren Kiss, Biomedical Engineering; Emaly Jadin and Zoe Kumm, Chemical Engineering. Samantha Ludwick, VP for Philanthropy with Delta Zeta National Sorority, was enthusiastic about their experience. “We had a blast harvesting veggies to be donated. We’d be happy to
help out again!”

Corbin Sullivan, a 3rd year Civil Engineering student, observed, “I participated in the Fall harvest yesterday because I wanted to learn more about agriculture and what it takes to grow one’s own food. As a Civil Engineering student, it is our job to design a world that serves humanity. Sometimes we forget what it took our ancestors to get to where we are now. I think that learning about the natural world around us is a must so that we know how to preserve it– not just for the future of the human species but for all species– and to prevent or mitigate any damage we might cause in the world.” 

The Western UP Food Bank serves more than 400 families and 500 seniors in Houghton, Baraga, and Keweenaw counties, and delivers food to 40 organizations in six counties. They are the only food bank in operation in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. They rely nearly 100% on local donations from businesses and individuals. To support their work, send your contributions to: P.O. Box 420, Hancock, MI 49830.

This community service event was organized by Joan Chadde, with the Michigan Tech Center
for Science & Environmental Outreach.
Way to go students!

CEGE Seeking Corporate Sponsors for Mobile Interactive Displays

The Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering Department is seeking corporate sponsors for three Mobile Displays. The purpose of the Mobile Displays is to provide opportunities for prospective students, K-12 students, families, friends, and visitors to campus to experience civil, environmental, and geospatial engineering. 

The Mobile Displays will be in prominent locations throughout Dillman Hall and Dow Engineering and Experimental Sciences Building so that prospective students on a campus tour can learn about our programs through hands-on activities and connections to real-world engineering. Being mobile, the displays will be used during K-12 Outreach events, Career Fairs at area schools, and travel with our Geospatial Engineering Trailer, which supports K-12 outreach to students in Michigan and beyond. Of course, the Mobile Displays will be deployed in our own classrooms as demonstrations faculty use to emphasize key principles to future engineers. Each Mobile Display is based on a key principle essential to the discipline and the degree program. 

The key principle demonstrated in the Civil Engineering Mobile display is stress. Stress is the result of when a force like tension or compression acts on a material or body.  Stress is measured as a ratio of force over area (e.g., lb/in2, N/m2).  The higher the force, the higher the stress – or the smaller the area the higher the stress.  All materials have a “stress limit” that, if reached, will fail said material or body.  Stress on a bridge beam being “loaded” by moving traffic can be controlled by changing the area moment of inertia, I, which is defined by the geometrical cross-section of the beam.  The higher the moment of inertia the less stress a beam will experience.  The beauty of the engineering design process in this simple case is best explained by considering that a pipe (which is hollow) will have a bigger area moment of inertia than a rod (which is solid) using the same amount of material.  This Engineering Mobile Display demonstrates how a specific load (or a specific deflection) can affect the stress on a beam based on its cross-sectional shape.  The many “mini beams” represent real-world structural sections currently used by industry.  Students and visitors can see the interaction of loads, deflections, stresses, materials, shapes, and even failures with hands-on “interplay” and real-time calculations.  The almost seemingly rudimentary principles of the ancient tried-&-true engineering process is easily explained and is sure to capture the interest, and spark curiosity, in all folks that stop by to play with us. 

Concentration is the key principle demonstrated through the Environmental Engineering Mobile Display. Using their own breath, students can see the impact of the amount of CO2 they release when they breathe in their environment. Those CO2 concentrations are then connected to current and past atmospheric CO2 concentration data. Concentration is a fundamental way in which we express the amount of substances in our water, air and soil environments. Helping our students experience firsthand the concept of concentration can draw them into the field. 

Location is the fundamental principle demonstration in the Geospatial Engineering Mobile Display. Location is the basis of positioning, where a person, place or thing is identified in three-dimensional space. We all occupy space and location is where we are at any given point in time. This location can be quantified by measurements that ultimately identify position. Geospatial Engineers use a multitude of tools that include electronic total stations, 3D scanners, UAV’s, and GPS to precisely and accurately measure position to determine location. Look around you. There is literally nothing that has been constructed, placed, erected, or removed without first knowing its location.  Location is where we are and will always be.Designed with sustainability and accessibility for all in mind, the Mobile Displays are easily transportable and easy for children of all ages to explore. Sponsorships are available for each Mobile Display. To become a CEGE Mobile Display sponsor, please contact Audra Morse at anmorse@mtu.edu or 906-487-3240.

Five High School Students Participate in One-week Summer STEM Internship at Michigan Tech ~ July 18-22

Five high school students from Detroit and Houghton participated in a 5-day science and engineering summer internship program at Michigan Technological University (MTU) from July 18-22, 2022. The students were paired with faculty with a variety of expertise and research interests.

Students worked in the lab and/or in the field (outside), toured campus, lived in a dorm, ate in the dining hall, and met students from around Michigan and beyond.

Dr. Daisuke Minikata, Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering, hosted two interns in his lab that were supervised by graduate students, Rose Daily, Benjamin Cerda Barrios, and Ben Morhardt. High school students, Michelle Simpkins and Eural Johnson learned about PFAS contamination by sampling local bodies of water and using the Orbitrap for qualitative identification, built PFAS molecules in ChemDraw 3D, toured the wastewater treatment plant and MTU Sustainability Demonstration House, became familiar with careers in environmental engineering. Michelle attends UPrep Academy for Math & Science and Eural Johnson attends Cass Tech.

Dr. Kuilin Zhang, Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering, hosted high school student Omaree Ishmael. Omaree used a Traffic Counter App to collect traffic data at Sharon Avenue and M-26 intersection. He then used the data to create a signalized intersection model using PTV VISSIM, a multi-modal traffic flow simulation software package. He also performed the CAV (Connected and Automated Vehicles) cooperative driving automation simulation.

Lastly, Dr. Evan Kane at the USDA and post-doc Julia Stuart, hosted two interns—Nora Sullivan and Bryson Taylor. Nora attends Houghton High School and Bryson attends Davis Aerospace Academy in Detroit. They learned how to conduct an N2 fixation in the field, performed a glucose assay in the lab, and visited the Nastoria bog field research site.

On the last day of their internship, students summarized the skills and knowledge that they had gained throughout the week in a presentation to fellow interns, hosts, and to their parents who joined virtually.

Students received a $900 scholarship to cover their meals, lodging, and roundtrip transportation on a Michigan Tech coach bus. In addition, the students went mountain biking at Tech Trails which was a brand new experience for four of the five interns. Some experienced being in a forest for the first time.

Students had this to say about their internship experience:

I learned how wastewater will change how the water is used in the world.

Our visit to the bog was very interesting.

Learning and experiencing new things!

Faculty and graduate students were always willing to answer my questions.”    

One student’s comment wraps it up, “Everything was great!”

Three of the five say they are now more seriously considering Michigan Tech after their internship experience.

The high school STEM internship program is coordinated by Michigan Tech Center for Science & Environmental Outreach, with funding from the National Science FoundationDepartment of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering, USDA Forest Research Lab, Raytheon, and the Shannon Foundation.

CEGE Academy 2022

The Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering inducted four new members to the Academy at a ceremony held Thursday, March 24, 2022. The Academy was established in 1993 to recognize excellence and leadership in engineering and civic affairs of outstanding graduates and friends of the Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering Department.

Russ Becker, PE, ‘89, ‘91

Russell Becker
Russell Becker

Russell (Russ) Becker completed his baccalaureate (1989) and master’s (1991) degrees in civil engineering at Michigan Tech. He is the Chief Executive Officer and President of APi Group, one of the largest providers of specialty services in North America and the largest provider of life safety services in the world. Russ’ continued commitment to overall excellence has inspired APi Group to create a culture of leadership by building an exceptional learning and development program, a highly selective Leader Development Program, and an award-winning veteran’s hiring program.
Russ began his career as a field engineer with Cherne Contracting. He moved on to become a project manager for Ryan Companies during the construction of the Greenfield Recycled Paper Mill project for Liberty Paper. Upon completion of this project he joined APi Group’s subsidiary, The Jamar Company, in Duluth, Minnesota. He started as manager of construction and was named president in 1998, where he served until joining APi Group as president in 2002.
He previously served as a member of Dunwoody Institute’s board of trustees. He is the former chair of the Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota board of directors and Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota Foundation board of directors. He currently serves on the Children’s Foundation board of directors, the Liberty Diversified Industries board of directors, and the Marvin Companies board of directors. He also serves on the advisory board for the College of Engineering at Michigan Technological University and the board for the Construction Industry Round Table (CIRT). Russ is an active member of the Young Presidents’ Organization and the Minnesota Business Partnership. Russ resides with his wife, Trish, and three sons in Dellwood, Minnesota.

Michael Drewyor P.E., P.S. ‘72, ‘74

Michael Drewyor
Michael Drewyor

Michael Drewyor received his baccalaureate (1972) and master’s degrees (1974) in civil engineering from Michigan Tech. He was an owner and partner with Robert Hitch at Hitch Inc. for 30 years where he provided architectural, civil/structural and surveying services for private, industrial and government clients. The business was sold in 2007 to Orchard, Hiltz and McCliment, Inc of Livonia, Michigan
Drewyor retired from Michigan Tech in 2020 as the Roland A. Mariucci Professor of Practice where he taught for the previous 13 years. His teaching assignments included courses in Construction Management, and senior capstone courses. He was also an advisor for the Associated Schools of Construction estimating team.
Drewyor has also been active in alumni activities, serving on the Alumni Board of Directors in the 90’s, local alumni chapter president in the 00’s and Sigma Rho Fraternity, Inc board since graduation. He is a member and supporter of the Huskies Club.
Drewyor serves as a National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) emeritus member from both the Michigan State Board of Professional Engineers and the Michigan State Board of Professional Surveyors. He previously served 8 years on both Michigan Boards. He received his commission as NCEES Central Zone vice president in 2020. As the vice president, Drewyor serves on the NCEES board of directors and as the zone’s administrative officer through 2022. He is also a current candidate for the NCEES position of President-Elect. This three-year cycle will run through August 2025.
Mike and Judy reside in Houghton, MI and have two children, Jennifer (Houghton) and Adam (Colorado).

Jennifer Hartfelder, PE, PMP ‘90

Jennifer Hartfelder
Jennifer Hartfelder

Jenny Hartfelder completed her civil engineering degree from Michigan Tech (90) and went on to complete a master’s degree in civil engineering at the University of Colorado, Denver. She is Vice President of Stantec, a top-tier global design and delivery firm. Based in Denver, Colorado, Hartfelder has over 30 years of experience providing project management and engineering design for municipal and federal clients. Her water and wastewater treatment plant experience includes the preparation of master plans, preliminary and detailed designs, and engineering services during construction. She has managed water and wastewater projects up to $10M with numerous small business subcontractors. She has extensive experience in the evaluation and design of wastewater disinfection systems, as well as business management including mentoring and leading staff, project delivery, client service management, and business development. Jenny previously served as a Strategic Campaign Manager for Stantec’s Water business leading top marketing campaigns across North America. She was responsible for leading the local pursuit teams to perform client account analyses; develop campaign plans and sales messages; and prepare statement of qualifications, proposals, and interviews. She was responsible for securing $10 to $20 million in sales per year.

She is a past president of the Water Environment Federation (WEF) and of the Rocky Mountain Water Environment Association. In 2021 she was named a WEF Fellow, one of the industry’s highest honors. She is a registered professional engineer in Colorado and Washington and Project Management Professional.

John Van Huis, PE ‘76

John Van Huis
John Van Huis

John Van Huis completed his baccalaureate degree in civil engineering at Michigan Tech in 1976. Upon graduation, he joined the Chicago & Northwestern Railroad (CNW) in the Chicago offices as a Structural Engineer. He went on to be Engineer of Coal Line bridges for the new Powder River Basin coal fields in Wyoming and then Bridge Engineer for the entire CNW system.

In 1987, he joined the investment group of CNW employees who purchased the Soo Line RR assets in the state of Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The Wisconsin Central Transportation Company (WCL) went on to own railroads in New Zealand and Australia where he oversaw bridge replacements and construction. While at WCL, he earned an MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. In 1999 he joined Radtke Contractors and formed their railroad bridge and construction division. In 2009 he finished his railroad career with Alfred Benesch as Sr. Project Manager Railroads and Vice-President Wisconsin Division and retired in 2016.

Mr. Van Huis is a registered engineer in the State of Wisconsin. He has been involved in many national railroad associations over the years. He was a member of the American Railroad Engineering Association (AREA), Roadmasters and Maintenance of Way Association and American Railway Bridge and Building Association where he served as President in 1994. All three of the organizations were merged to form into what is now known as the American Railway and Engineering Association (AREMA).

John and his wife Suzanne reside in Winneconne, Wisconsin. They have two sons and one grandchild. They have both been deeply involved in their sons’ lives coaching youth hockey, soccer, and volunteering for the Oshkosh YMCA swim team. They are also supporters of the late great singer-songwriter Dan Fogelberg Prostate Cancer Foundation. In retirement, John enjoys substitute teaching in the local school systems, gardening, and international and domestic travel.

Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering 2022 Department Awards

Undergraduate Student Awards

Nicole Bloom Award for Environmental Sustainability

Brian Goldberg
Brian Goldberg

This award is made annually to an undergraduate civil or environmental engineering student who has demonstrated leadership, passion, and activism for effecting environmental sustainability at the local, national, or global level.

Brian Goldberg has been selected for the 2022 Nicole Bloom Award – Brian is the current co-president of the Green Campus Enterprise. Brian was nominated for this award by Robert Handler, advisor for the Green Campus Enterprise and adjunct faculty in the CEGE Department.  The Green Campus Enterprise works to design and assess projects that could have a meaningful impact on the environmental footprint of the Michigan Tech campus. Brian has been instrumental in developing new campus projects for the Green Campus Enterprise.  His leadership has helped move the Green Campus Enterprise in the right direction.

The Nicole Bloom award is accompanied by the Pati and Soumitri Reddy $1000 endowed scholarship.

Department Scholar

Thomas Pastell
Thomas Pastell

Thomas Pastell was selected to represent the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering as our 2022 Department Scholar and to be considered for the Provost’s Award for Scholarship.   Thomas is civil engineering major that exemplifies the intellectual curiosity and creativity that are the hallmarks of a high achieving student and scholar, additionally, he is extremely conscientious, honest, and hardworking.   Thomas is captain of the Steel Bridge team and he is using his steel bridge activities to participate in the Built World Enterprise.   He is also a trailblazer as he thought to combine the two experiential learning activities. 

The Department Scholar recognition is accompanied by a $500 scholarship.

David W. Hand Environmental Process Engineering Award

This award is named after Professor Emeritus David Hand who designed the environmental engineering process lab and taught the class for over 15 years. Dr. Hand is internationally known for his expertise in water treatment.

This award recognizes a team of students from the CEE 4509 capstone environmental engineering class for: outstanding technical skills in the laboratory, outstanding teamwork and professionalism, effective oral and written communications, and excellence in safety protocol as recognized by your peers and supported by the instructor.

This year there were two teams that Dr. Jennifer Becker and Dr. Eric Seagren found best embodied the spirit of this award and both will be recognized.

Aden Clark
Margaret Purvis
Evan Rye

Malina Gallmeyer
Jack Hoffman
Anabel Needham

Each team member will receive a $100 scholarship from the CEE Department.

Graduate Student Awards

Danielle Ladwig Award for Graduate Excellence

Rose Dailey
Rose Daily

The Danielle Ladwig Award is made annually to a graduate-level student in civil or environmental engineering in recognition of outstanding achievement in academics, research, and service, in memory of our friend and colleague, Danielle Ladwig. 

This year Rose Daily was selected for the 2022 Danielle Ladwig Award.  She was nominated for the award by Joan Chadde who highlighted her admirable record of service accomplishments.  Rose has been especially active in promoting sustainable solutions for campus and the local community.  She has been involved in numerous ways with outreach and has presented to Grade 4-12 students through the Water Festival and the Lake Superior Youth Symposium as well as career path presentations on environmental engineering for local high school students.   In the past academic year, Rose has been expanding her expertise in sustainable systems at Instituto Monteverde in Costa Rica.  There she has been working on a project to construct a rainwater collection system for a local K-12 school (Monteverde Friends School) and designing a constructed wetland to treat all of the grey water leaving another local K-12 school (Cloud Forest School).  Rose was the recipient of an NSF GRFP Fellowship which has funded her work in Costa Rica.

This award is accompanied by the Pati and Soumitri Reddy $1000 endowed fellowship.

Wilbur Haas Graduate Research Excellence Award

The Graduate Research Excellence Award is made annually to a graduate-level student in civil or environmental engineering to recognize outstanding student scholarship and research contributions.

This year Dongzhao Jin and Yunxiang Ma have both been selected for recognition with the 2022 Graduate Research Excellence Award.  The quality of their research and publications is very deserving of recognition.   

Dongzhao Jin
Dongzhao (Kobe) Jin

Dongzhao (Kobe) Jin is a civil engineering doctoral candidate advised by Dr. Zhanping You.  He is researching sustainable asphalt pavements.  To date, his research has led to a number of papers including 15 published peer-reviewed journal papers, 2 conference proceedings, and 1 under-review paper. His strong track record is equivalent to those of many assistant professors in well-known institutions. In addition to his publications, he has also been very active to help seek funding and preparing proposals for my research group.  He is enthusiastically preparing himself to become a future researcher to develop sustainable construction materials. His efforts in teaching made him earn the Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Award in 2020. He also received the 2022 Graduate Student Government Exceptional Student Scholar Award.

Yunxiang Ma
Yunxiang Ma

Yunxiang Ma is a civil engineering doctoral candidate advised by Dr. Qingli Dai.  He is researching the mechanical behavior of CLT walls and wind and seismic performance of CLT shear wall structures. Mr. Ma has dedicated his research to developing the research results on performance evaluation of CLT panels and resilient CLT shear wall structures. His research has resulted in 8 journal papers, 2 under second-review papers, and 1 to-be-submitted manuscript. It is noted that he has published papers in several high-impacted journals (in our field) including the Journal of Cleaner Production (IF: 7.246), the Journal of Construction and Building Materials (IF: 4.419), and ASCE Journal of Structure Engineering (IF: 2.528). These three journals are the most highly rated in the field of construction materials and structural engineering, respectively. He has also worked collaboratively with the scientists in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Forest product Lab and Colorado School of Mines for different research projects.  He is the recipient of the Graduate School Finishing Fellowship and the 2022 Department Outstanding Scholarship Award.

This award is accompanied by a $1000 Wilbur Haas Memorial Fellowship.

Department Citizenship Award

The Department Citizenship Award recognizes a faculty and staff member that ‘goes the extra mile whether it be in representing the Department, helping colleagues, or participating at events.  The award is decided by the Department Chair and is accompanied by a $1000 to a faculty IRAD or staff extra compensation.

This was a tough decision as so many have stepped up to ensure our teaching, research and service activities excelled during the last year, despite shrinking budgets, colleague departures, and challenges created because of COVID. 

Jeffery Hollingsworth
Jeffery Hollingsworth

Jeffery Hollingsworth is being recognized for his incredible service this year. Jeffery is recognized for stepping up following a sudden departure of a faculty member, filling in for a faculty member who was having health problems, and for serving on the faculty search committee. In addition to all that, Jeffery has actively participated in the recruitment process, kept up with binder changes on behalf of the geospatial program, leading the departmental assessment activities, and is participating in teacher and K-12 outreach events this summer.  Thank you Jeffery for your service to your colleagues, our students, and prospective students.

Henrique de Melo e Silva

Due to the sudden departure of Dave Perram and the retirement of Chris Wojick, a huge void was created in the CEGE safety program.  Kiko (aka Henrique de Melo e Silva) is receiving the Departmental Citizen Award for willingly stepping up to fill the vacancy and subsequently leading safety activities at the college and university level.  Thank you for being willing to grow in taking on this role.

Student Voted Awards

Faculty of the Year – and GTA of the Year

The CEGE Department has two awards that are voted on by the departmental students, the GTA of the Year and the Faculty of the Year Award.  We appreciate the work of Chi Epsilon and their advisor, Stephen Morse, for conducting the voting.  

The Faculty of the Year award will recognize two faculty – the top voted faculty from the Civil/Geospatial Engineering specialties and the top voted faculty from the Environmental/Water Resources Engineering specialties.  This award will be accompanied by a $1000 transfer to the faculty IRAD index.

Stan Vitton

Stan Vitton

Dr. Stan Vitton joined the faculty of the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering in 1994.  Over the years he has shared his knowledge with CEGE students on a wide variety of engineering topics as well as his industrial engineering experience with Shell Oil.  He has instructed numerous courses in the geotechnical engineering specialty.  His research has been in the area of geotechnical materials and during his twenty-eight years at Michigan Tech, he had 31 peer-reviewed publications, 20 peer-reviewed conference proceedings, 27 reports, 4 book chapters, 61 professional presentations, 2 U.S. and international patents, and a total research funding of $6.3 million with $2.3 million directly attributed to Dr. Vitton.   In June 2022, Stan will retire from the CEGE Department.

Noel Urban
Noel Urban

Noel Urban

Dr. Urban joined the faculty of the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering in 1995.  His teaching interests are in the environmental engineering domain and include: Environmental Engineering Chemical Processes, Surface Water Quality Engineering, and Global Biogeochemistry.  He has an active research program and has interests in wetland biogeochemistry, sediment diagenesis, and the environmental impact and fate of pollutants.

GTA of the Year Award

Tyler LeMahieu
Tyler LeMahieu

The GTA of the Year award recognizes the top voted graduate teaching assistant from all the Department’s specialty areas.  This award will be accompanied by a $500 fellowship.

Tyler LeMahieu is the 2022 GTA of the year. He was a GTA for CEE 3620, Water Resources Engineering.

Congratulations to the Fall 2021 Graduates

The Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering would like to congratulate our fall graduates and raise you up for all to see. We are proud of you and want to wish you the best of luck in your next chapter.

Presenting our fall 2021 graduates:

Cole Arntsen

Cole will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He will continue with his education by pursuing an MS in civil engineering at Michigan Tech. Cole will miss the beautiful fall colors of the surrounding Houghton County. He is thankful to Michigan Tech for the family environment that surrounds the student body and how welcoming and willing to help everyone is. Cole would like to recognize Dr. Kris Mattila for making a difference to him while at Tech.

Trent Ballor

Trent is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, he will pursue a career in Transportation Engineering at the Michigan Department of Transportation. Trent will miss all of the friends he has made while at Michigan Tech and also the beautiful area. He is thankful to Tech for providing him with an excellent education to equip him for his career. Trent would like to recognize his family and friends that have supported him throughout his college career.

Sarah Barry

Sarah will graduate with a bachelor’s in environmental engineering. After graduation, she will travel to Iceland as part of the Green Program to learn about sustainable solutions which can be applied to environmental engineering and complete her capstone project. Afterward, she will continue her career development by taking the FE exam. Sarah will miss all the great friends and activities at Michigan Tech and the beautiful area we have here in the Keweenaw. She will also miss Tech hockey because she enjoyed going to all the games to support the Huskies! Sarah is thankful for the hands-on experience through labs and continuous educational support offered at Michigan Tech by the faculty and students. She would like to recognize her parents that have supported her throughout her education and would not have succeeded without their encouragement.

Everhett Biland

Everhett is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, he will begin a full-time position as a Project Engineer with Swinerton Builders in Denver, CO. He will also start his service in the Wyoming Army National Guard as an Engineer Officer, and will be pursuing an online master’s degree in structural engineering through Michigan Tech. Everhett says he will miss the spontaneous adventures in the Keweenaw, Michigan Tech’s awesome Army ROTC program, and the great bars downtown. He is thankful for all the friends he made, the professors in the CEGE Department who challenged him every day, and the semi-annual career fairs that opened up a lot of career opportunities. When asked if he would like to recognize someone who has made a difference to him at Tech, he says “Dr. Tess Ahlborn for being a phenomenal professor and opening my eyes to pursuing my education and MAJ Daniel Gwosch for encouraging me to step out of my comfort zone.

Trevor Brandt

Trevor will be graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. Trevor will begin his career at Soils & Structures as a Geotechnical EIT after graduation. He says he will miss attending hockey games with his friends and is thankful to Michigan Tech for all the opportunities he was given to pursue his different interests, both academically and otherwise. Trevor would like to recognize Chris Wojick who was his enterprise advisor for several semesters and helped him start thinking about problems more thoroughly.

Katelyn Burch

Katelyn is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. She will be moving to Colorado Springs to work for GE Johnson as a project engineer for their earthworks department after graduation. Katelyn says she will miss the broomball season at Tech – “It was a large part of my life here from my 2nd year onward and the memories that I made from it with being out shoveling rinks during a blizzard, to being able to be a part of ball drop a few times, and the many friends I made, it is something that I’ll truly miss.” She says she is thankful for all the opportunities she has had at Tech with being able to grow as a leader and work with people in the community, she has learned so much from her time here and the lessons are invaluable.

Josh Cain

Josh will be graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, he intends to return home to Traverse City and work for one of the engineering firms he was able to connect with there. Josh is thankful for the amazing education he received at Michigan Tech and is confident the skills he learned here will help him succeed in his career.

Jay Czerniak

Jay Czerniak
Jay is the student speaker for the fall 2021 commencement

Jay is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He plans to return to Tech to pursue an MBA and will work full-time as a Project Manager in the summer with Miron Construction. Jay will miss the community and comradery between students- in particular, the student community at St. Al’s. He is thankful to Tech for giving him the understanding that sometimes you have to work for anything that is worth getting. Jay says “I would like to thank Dr. Mattila. He was instrumental in my perseverance in completing my studies and helped me to believe in my own skills. I would also thank Fr. Ben Hasse, who helped me through a few tough patches and helped me meet some of my best friends.

Jessica Daignault

Jessica is graduating with a Ph.D. in civil engineering. She is currently at Montana Technological University as a faculty member in the Civil Engineering Department and is also doing consulting work for OHM Advisors part-time. Jessica says she will miss the proximity to pure and endless natural beauty, saying “the Keweenaw is such a special place to call home.” Jessica states “Michigan Tech has played a fundamental role in my life story from high school through graduate school. The connections made and opportunities presented have paved the way to a vibrant career, and I will be forever thankful for that! I’d like to recognize the faculty members who instructed me as an undergraduate student and continued to mentor me when I returned to MTU for graduate school. It was such a special experience to reconnect with so many of you!

Spencer Davis

Spencer will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering. He has accepted a full-time job for a consulting firm in Milwaukee focusing on wastewater treatment. Spencer says he will miss the close proximity to so many great natural places and beautiful things to see. He says he is thankful to Michigan Tech for all the opportunities and support for obtaining the technical skills and developing a professional background to pursue a career in the field of his choice. Also for the amazing friends and people he has had the opportunity to meet.

David Disney

David is graduating with a bachelor’s in environmental engineering. After graduation, he plans on doing consulting work. David says he will miss the unique student culture and at Michigan Tech and is thankful for Tech keeping the sidewalks clear in the winter. He would like to recognize the great staff and professors in the Environmental Engineering Department.

Camila Dul

Camila is graduating with a master’s degree in environmental engineering. After graduation, she will be working for OHM Advisors as an Engineer for the Environmental Water Resources Group. Camila says she will miss the views from campus and is thankful for how welcoming everyone is on campus and the amount of encouragement she received from her professors.

John Dunleavy

John will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in construction management. He will pursue a career in the construction field after graduation. John will miss snowmobiling with his friends and is thankful for the opportunities experienced with the friends he has made while at Tech.

Mason Dyke

Mason is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, he will be working at Fleis and Vandenbrink in Grand Rapids and as an Army National Guard Engineering Officer. Mason will miss the skiing and mountain biking at Michigan Tech. He would like to recognize Jonathan Fox as someone who made a difference to him during his time at Tech.

Conor Flaherty

Connor will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in construction management. He plans to work after graduation.

David Goldfarb

David will graduate with his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduating, he will move to Colorado to work with HDR. David says he will miss all the beauty he is surrounded with, all the trails, hikes, waterfalls, views, and most of all he will miss “Mama Superior”. He is thankful to Michigan Tech for forcing him to learn how to climb over constant hurdles and adversity to achieve his goals. David says “I’ve had a lot of professors and people at Tech who made my journey a lot easier and enjoyable, but I know I could not have gotten this far and graduated without my advisor Julie Ross, she’s the best advisor at Michigan Tech and truly cares for everyone’s success.

Leah Goldman

Leah is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering. She will begin working for Westwood as a graduate civil engineer on the Renewable Energy team after graduation. Leah says she will miss the snow and the great people at Michigan Tech. Leah is thankful to Tech because although the classes are hard, they allow for you to really expand your knowledge and take a lot away from each class, and people in the industry know how hard students work here.

Thomas Gunst

Thomas will be graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, he will be starting a career in the civil engineering field and pursuing his private pilot’s license. Thomas says he will miss the campus, surrounding area, and local ice rinks.

Maureen Hennenfent

Maureen will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering. She will be pursuing a career in water engineering after graduation. Maureen will miss the trips to Lake Superior and the fall colors and is thankful for the incredible people Tech has brought into her life, saying “Tech has provided me with friendships that will last a lifetime. The professors in the environmental engineering department have been so helpful to me over the years. They are extremely knowledgeable about their fields of study and truly care about their students.

Ben Holland

Ben is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, he will continue at Michigan Tech as an accelerated master’s student. Something Ben says he will miss after graduation is running for the Michigan Tech cross country team. He says he is thankful for all of the industry applicable experience in class and would like to recognize Melanie Kueber-Watkins and Brian Barkdoll for making a difference to him while at Tech. Ben says “The civil environmental program is awesome!

Julia Jenaway

Julia will be graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. She will be continuing at Michigan Tech for another two semesters to earn her master’s degree in structural engineering. Julia says she will miss the snow and having the convenience of a ski hill five minutes from campus and that she is thankful to Michigan Tech for a great education.

Frederick Jones

Fred is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, he will be moving to Denver to work for Baker Concrete Construction. Fred says he will miss the unique experience you get every day, just by being here and that he is thankful to Michigan Tech for helping him grow up and facilitate positive change in his life. When asked if he would like to recognize someone who made a difference to him while at Tech, he says “Brian Barkdoll, for having confidence in me, being a positive mentor, and for being one of the most caring teachers I’ve ever had. The entire Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering department deserve a huge thanks. Never once did I have a faculty member from our department that wasn’t understanding, and they always had my learning as a top priority. Truly enjoyed learning from all of the Civil and Environmental courses I took.
Also, our advisor, Julie, is one of the great blessings to this university. She truly helped me so much when things seemed bleak, and graduation seemed so far. I truly believe that without her, I wouldn’t be graduating for another year. She is a true example that not all hero’s wear capes.”

Ethan Lang

Ethan is graduating with his bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering. Ethan will miss doing homework while ice fishing and would like to recognize his mom, dad, and stepdad for making his college possible and debt-free.

Katherine Lawson

Katerine will be graduating with a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering. After graduation, she will be working as a staff engineer at G2 Consulting Group in Ann Arbor.

Carleigh Lenard

Carleigh is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering. She plans to visit friends and family after graduation while continuing the job hunt. Carleigh says she will miss playing in the pep band and is thankful to Tech for providing her with opportunities going far beyond education. She has gotten to intern at really interesting companies, work on important research and have some fun with many student organizations.

Owen Mattila

Owen will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He will be continuing on to attend graduate school at Michigan Tech for a master’s degree in civil engineering. Owen says “I would like to recognize my dad (Dr. Kris Mattila) for all your support and guidance throughout college. It was great to be able to stay close to home for college and not many people can say they’ve had their dad as a professor. As I’ve advanced through college I have grown as a person and as someone who has developed an engineering mindset. I will be a better engineer because of you, and I appreciate that. Thanks for all you do!”

Mihir Mehendale

Mihir will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, he will work full-time with JT Engineering in Madison, WI and would late like to pursue an MS degree in civil engineering.

Isaac Pantti

Isaac is graduating with a master’s degree in civil engineering. He plans on being a structural designer of buildings after graduation. Isaac says he will miss the laid-back atmosphere of his graduate classes and he is thankful to the helpful faculty in the CEGE Department as well as the ability to be a TA. Isaac says “Professor Bulleit did a lot to make sure we did proper graduate quality work, and that led to a total transformation in how I present my work. Michigan Tech has been really good to me. I am really thankful for the supportive structural engineering professors I had. I am thankful to Dr. You for having lab assistant and TA work available. I am happy to have met all the different people here from around the world. I am definitely ready to move on, but I will never forget about the university, and should I want to continue my education, I will always look back here.

Jacob Paquet

Jacob will be graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, he will continue work with GEI Consultants out of Marquette. Jacob says he will miss all of his friends and is thankful to Michigan Tech for preparing him for the workforce.

Theresa Passe

Theresa is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering. She will continue on to obtain her master’s degree at Michigan Tech after graduation. She would like to recognize Dr. Jennifer Becker as someone who has made a difference to her during her time at Michigan Tech. Theresa says she will miss Broomball and Lake Superior and is thankful to Michigan Tech for the awesome faculty. She says she loved being a Husky!

Adam Pulter

Adam is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering. After graduation, he will use the knowledge and skills gained from Michigan Tech during his first job in his desired field. Adam will miss all the snow and winter sports and is thankful to Tech for teaching him the value of hard work.

Christopher Reitz

Christopher will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He has accepted an offer from Abonmarche Consultants as a Staff Engineer and will begin this after graduation. Christopher will miss the Keweenaw’s beautiful scenery and is thankful to Tech for challenging him to learn and better himself so he can be prepared to take on professional responsibilities. He would like to recognize Dr. Kris Mattila as someone who made a difference during his time at Michigan Tech. Chris says “When I look back on some of the challenges I’ve faced throughout my time here, I’m proud of myself for working to get through them. These challenges have allowed me to learn and prepare for my professional career.

Amber Ronsman

Amber is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. After graduation, she will be working full-time for Miron Construction as a Project Manager out of the Green Bay office. Amber will miss the community that Tech shares and the snow (just a little). She is thankful for the opportunities that Tech has provided, from the career fair, student organizations, and conferences – there is no lack of opportunities when attending Tech. She says “I would like to recognize my advisor, Julie Ross for not only the work she has put in to help me but the entire department. She is so willing to walk you through anything and understands that it’s not always easy. We are so lucky to have her!

Chase Smith

Chas will be graduating with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering. He will begin work as a civil engineer with UP Engineers and Architects after graduating. Chase says he will miss his friends and is thankful to Tech for getting him a degree. He would like to recognize Nick Allsop as someone who made a difference during his time at Michigan Tech.

Anthony Vang

Anthony will graduate with a bachelor’s in civil engineering. After graduation, he will become a 2nd LT in the Air Force and train as an RPA Pilot. Anthony will miss Winter Carnival and is thankful for the experience to make mistakes and learn a lot from them. He would like to recognize the AFROTC program at Tech as making a difference to him while at Tech. Anthony says “I am grateful for the opportunity to be a part of Michigan Tech and its community. I have definitely grown a lot from my freshmen year and I feel confident and prepared to take the next step in my life. I am also getting married on Dec 12th!

Hossam Yaqoub

Hoss is graduating with a master’s in civil engineering making him the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geospatial Engineering’s first online MSCE graduate! He will continue on at MTU to achieve more in-depth exploration for his favorite science of civil engineering by pursuing his Ph.D. He says “The online Master’s program sets my eagerness to explore new aspects of structural design and civil engineering. It gave me the opportunity to gain and improve some skills and increased my consciousness about engineering in general. In these hard times due to COVID, a lot of effort was conducted mutually with a lot of Jogging, reading, classical music and boxing in my free time that lead my desire to get better opportunities to enhance my technical capabilities and scientific bases. This was the major lead to graduate from the MSCE online program in structural engineering in Fall 2021. With great passion, I was able to complete the program in two years.

Graduates Not Pictured Above

BS in Civil Engineering

Russ Bjorn

Adam Budzinski

Bobbi Hulce

Celia Juntti

Steph Klaysmat

Mitchell Knox

Megyn Ostrom

Erik Peterson

Eric Sabourin

Mathieu St. Amour

Elijah Young

BS in Construction Management

Cameron Mulka

Ross Oja

Brendan Thompson

BS in Environmental Engineering

Bennett Johnson

Samantha Johnston

Grace Kluchka

Nicole Mielcarek

Lauryn Roberts

BS in Geospatial Engineering

Alyx Thayer

MS in Civil Engineering

Robyn Holmes

Conrad Truettner

MS in Environmental Engineering

John Harron

MS in Integrated Geospatial Technology

Samuel Shumaker