Category: Students

Chemical Engineering Convocation 2021

The Department of Chemical Engineering proudly bestows honors and awards to ChE students each spring by way of a Convocation Awards Ceremony. This year we were unable to host an in-person event, but were fortunate to recognize our students virtually on April 16, 2021.

The faculty and staff of Chemical Engineering join together in offering our sincerest congratulations to all of our honored recipients and this year’s graduating class. Kudos on your resilience, determination and drive for success.

Keynote Speaker

Bradley Rick

Bradley Rick ’84 ’86

Bradley Rick earned his BSChE in 1984 and his MSChE in 1986, both from Michigan Tech.

During his graduate studies Brad was part of a research team sponsored by the US Environmental Protection Agency, studying the adsorption of VOCs in off-gas emitted from air-stripping towers that treated contaminated groundwater. Brad has spent his 35-year career working at Amway Corporation, an $8B global leader in direct selling consumer products, located in Ada, Michigan.

His early years were devoted to engineering roles in both process development and product R&D. As a result, Brad holds multiple patents, and has held executive positions at Amway over the past 20 years in Quality Assurance, Information Technology, Engineering, and Manufacturing. Brad is currently is Director of Manufacturing at Amway, responsible for a family of plants making paper and plastic packaging, powdered nutrition drinks, soft gel vitamin supplements, probiotics, and carbonated energy drinks.

Chair’s Award for Outstanding Chemical Engineering Senior

Matt Harris

Matt Harris

The Chair’s Award for Outstanding chemical Engineering Senior recognizes the exceptional record of a chemical engineering graduating senior for their academic achievement, experiential learning activities, and community engagement. To be eligible for consideration the candidate must be graduating in the current calendar year, demonstrate their commitment to the chemical engineering profession and show how their activities have positively impacted others through inspiration, action and/or leadership.

Matt has been involved in many student organizations on campus, holding various leadership positions, taken on many volunteer roles, has worked multiple co-op and internship positions, all while maintaining a high level of academic achievement. Where Matt’s experience at Michigan Tech stood out from his peers was in his commitment to mentoring students, demonstrated through his involvement with the rowing activities on campus as part-time coach and instructor, as well as his involvement with the department’s student advisory board and peer mentoring program. Matt has taken the opportunity to positively impact students across campus with these activities as well as provide service to the department by contributing valuable feedback about the current student experience and assisting his peers. Matt’s willingness to openly share what he has learned on how to be successful with other students is an asset to not just the students he helps but to the chemical engineering program and university as a whole.

Excellence in Communication Award

Erin Andersen

Erin Andersen

The Excellence in Communication Award was created to acknowledge the critical role that effective communication plays in successful leadership. This award recognizes a graduating senior from the department of chemical engineering for their effective use of communication of the highest standard. Candidates for this award may be nominated by faculty, staff, or students.

Erin was nominated by a student. Her nominator states:

“…I would like to nominate Erin Anderson for the Excellence in Communication Award. I believe she qualifies for this award as she was an amazing Orientation Leader. As an incoming Freshman in 2018, there were a lot of things I was not aware of initially entering college that she effectively communicated to me as an Orientation Leader. She also provided a Welcoming Environment for me and my peers in our group, and made herself available for any questions and or concerns I might’ve had. From the beginnings of my college experience as a Freshman, she helped Communicate to me that Michigan Tech was an Inclusive and Enjoyable place to go to college…”

Professional Ethics Award

Bryce Walbrun and companion
Bryce Walbrun (left)

Bryce Walbrun

This award recognizes a student who has exhibited exemplary ethics and admirable professional conduct during Plant Design and Unit Operations experiences, and throughout their academic career at Michigan Technological University.

Bryce Walbrun was nominated for this award by a faculty member because of his honesty and candor, even extending to self-evaluation of his own performance as a CPM Enterprise project leader. In Enterprise and his coursework, Bryce has shown awareness of the importance of following ethical guidelines, and he has asked probing questions about workplace ethical dilemmas.

Prevent Accidents With Safety (PAWS) Award

Meredith Grusnick

The Prevent Accidents with Safety (PAWS) Undergraduate Lab Safety Program is a comprehensive safety program requiring training, constant vigilance, and incident reporting and documentation systems— all with an eye toward critical review and continuous improvement. The Prevent Accidents with Safety (PAWS) program provides a framework to develop the necessary safety culture within the student community. The key to the PAWS program is that the students in the Unit Operations Laboratory bear the responsibility for personal health and safety and for the safety of those around them. Specific safety-related responsibilities are assigned to the students in addition to their course responsibilities. The student owned portion of the PAWS program is built around a safety committee and a communications and documentation system.

Throughout the capstone lab sequence, Meredith promoted a strong safety culture and worked to improve our safety program. In addition to being part of the safety team, Meredith organized a guest speaker, a Health & Safety Specialist at Dow Chemical, to talk with the class about industrial safety, specifically covering safety incidents, the response to those incidents, and the protocols put in place because of them. Meredith felt these topics are relevant to her peers, and discussing them would provide an opportunity to gain an understanding of management systems that are in place and the role of chemical engineers in these systems.

Marriot W. Bredekamp Award

Joleen Adams, David Alger, Kevin Miltenberger and Kyle Koetje

This award recognizes outstanding technical skills in the laboratory, outstanding teamwork and professionalism, effective oral and written communication, and strong adherence to process safety practices as recognized by your peers and supported by the faculty of the department. This award is in memory of Dr. Marriot W. Bredekamp.

Joleen Adams
Joleen Adams
David Alger
David Alger
Kevin Miltenberger
Kevin Miltenberger
Kyle Koetje
Kyle Koetje

Senior Design Team Awards

First Place (John T. Patton Award)

Michael Griggs, Paul Langsford, Matthew Schienke, and James Somerville for “FCC Ostromislensky Chemical Plant Producing 1,3-Butadiene from Ethanol”

Michael Griggs
Michael Griggs
Paul Langsford
Paul Langsford
Matthew Schienke
Matthew Schienke
James Somerville
James Somerville

Second Place

Mallory Bunker, Emily Burke, Meredith Grusnick, and Bridget O’Connell for “Proposal for an FCC Hydrocarbons Plant Producing Ethylene from Raw Ethane in Baton Rouge, LA”

Mallory Bunker
Mallory Bunker
Emily Burke
Emily Burke
Bridget O’Connell
Bridget O’Connell

Third Place

David Alger, Shane Cruthers, Jon Hook, and Kyle Koetje for “FCC Expansion into Crude Oil Refining”

David Alger
David Alger
Shane Cruthers
Shane Cruthers
Jon Hook
Jon Hook
Kyle Koetje
Kyle Koetje

Dr. John Patton, as Chair and faculty member, initiated much of the content of today’s design courses in the ChE Department. He brought his experiences at Exxon to the classroom to provide students with a systematic way to design and analyze a new large-scale capital project. This award recognizes the student team in CM4861 that created the best plant design and recommendation for Fictitious Chemical Company. We are proud that Dr. Patton, in retirement, can see the elements of design he taught are alive and well in our soon-to-be graduates.

Davis W. Hubbard Outstanding Rising Senior Award

Cameron Reid

Dr. Davis W. Hubbard was a faculty member in the Department of Chemical Engineering for many years. He was committed to engineering education and inspired a generation of students to excel through hard work and perseverance. The eligible candidate for this award has completed all their junior-level core chemical engineering courses. The selection of the award is based on (i) grade point average for the course work done at Michigan Technological University, (ii) research engagement, and (iii) internship/co-op work experience.

In addition to Cameron’s impressive performance in his course work at Michigan Tech and co-op experience, Cameron has been the treasurer for AIChE for the last year.  He has been very involved with the organization, both as a member and on the e-board. Cameron has been described by his nominator as “very proactive and timely, bringing new ideas to the table and getting tasks done efficiently”.

Student Organization Leadership Awards

AIChE

AIChE had an outstanding E-board this year. They worked extremely well together to improve the organization, including increasing the number of companies that participated at meetings. This year’s eboard was led by Tanner Sheahan. Tanner’s efforts to improve AIChE has resulted in an increased number of meetings, sponsors, and opportunities for our students. Congratulations Tanner.

CMLC

As the coordinator for the CMLC this year, Bryce was presented with a challenge of how to organize everything. He needed to make sure that students could get the help that they needed, while also making sure that the rules for distancing and preventing potential disease spread were followed. He rose to the challenge, and the CMLC coaches were able to do what needed to be done while still ensuring that everyone could remain healthy.

CPM

This year, the CPM Enterprise has 10 projects and nearly 50 students, so it is a complex organization to keep on track.  Jacob Michaud (President) and Kelsey Farrell (V.P.) have teamed up this year to keep CPM running like a well-oiled machine.  Their imprint will continue to be felt for years to come.  Both have set high standards for themselves, and they have seen to it that students under their management get a good Enterprise experience.  Jacob and Kelsey deserve our acknowledgment and recognition.

OXE

Omega Chi Epsilon is the National Honor Society for Chemical Engineering. The Society promotes high scholarship, encourages original investigation in chemical engineering and recognizes the valuable traits of character, integrity and leadership. It serves both undergraduate and graduate students and fosters meaningful student-faculty dialogue. 

In recognition of his leadership of OXE over the past year, the OXE award goes to former president John Baughn.

SAB

The SAB leadership award goes to Matt Harris. The Student Advisory Board this year had a very talented and engaged team that, in addition to continuing past initiatives, took on a new initiative this year to review the Department web-site and social media from a students’ perspective and how it can be improved in terms of ease of navigation and finding the needed information. As SAB President, Matt Harris led and motivated a very capable team. The true sign of a leader is to position the organization so it can function smoothly afterwards.

AEE

Jacob Orlando has been elected twice as president to serve on the leadership board of the Alternative Energy Enterprise (AEE) for the past two years. To be elected president twice is a pretty remarkable feat in itself. As one of the faculty mentors in AEE, along with Jay Meldrum, I have appreciated Jacob’s enthusiasm for alternative energy, his ability to keep the various AEE teams organized, and in providing encouragement to students in AEE to take advantage of the opportunities that it offers. Congratulations Jacob.

AIChE Awards

Teacher of the Year Award

Dr. Faith Morrison

Research Mentor of the Year Award

Dr. Caryn Heldt

Graduate Teaching Assistant of the Year Award

Elizabeth Hoekstra

Undergraduate Grader of the Year

Kevin Miltenberger

Staff Making a Difference Award

Stefan Wisniewski


Larkin Hooker-Moericke is an Exceptional Leader in Student Governance

Larkin Hooker-Moericke
Larkin Hooker-Moericke

Outstanding students, staff, and a special alumni were honored Friday (April 16, 2021) during Michigan Tech’s 27th Annual Student Leadership Awards Virtual Ceremony.

Nathan Ford, a graduate student, and Larkin Hooker-Moericke, an undergraduate student, were recognized as Exceptional Leaders in Student Governance. Both have collaborated on numerous projects and contributions for their constituency over the past year. With the unconventional year, they have shown to pivot and jointly work together to serve the students of Michigan Tech. They have advocated for modifications to various academic policies that have made significant impacts, formed several new committees to address student concerns, and worked tirelessly to minimize disruptions to the student experience. Their nomination states that the list of all the specific things they have done is just too long, but what is really important is that at no point have Larkin and Nathan lost sight of their job: the well-being and success of all students.

Larkin, President of Undergraduate Student Government, is a chemical engineering major.

27th Annual Student Leadership Awards


Utkarsh Chaudhari Takes First Place in GRC 2021 Poster Session

Utkarsh Chaudhari
Utkarsh Chaudhari

Poster Session

First place was won by Utkarsh Chaudhari from the Department of Chemical Engineering for his presentation titled “Systems Analysis Approach to PET and Olefin Plastics Supply Chains in the Circular Economy.”

View the Poster Presentations, Group 2, and the PDF.

This year’s Graduate Research Colloquium organized by the Graduate Student Government was hosted virtually due to COVID restrictions. There were in total 48 presentations — 17 poster presenters and 31 oral presenters.

Poster presentations took place in a pre-recorded video style and the oral sessions were hosted live via Zoom. You can watch all the poster videos and recordings for the oral sessions here. Each presentation was scored by two judges from the same field of research.

Participants were able to gain valuable feedback from these judges before presenting their research at an actual conference. It was stiff competition amongst all presenters.

A hearty congratulations to all the winners at this year’s Colloquium. The Graduate Student Government would like to thank everyone: presenters, judges, volunteers, and GSG supporters, for making this a great event despite COVID-19 restrictions. GSG would also like to hear ways in which this event could be improved next year using this feedback form.

By Graduate Student Government.


Society of Women Engineers Scholarship Recipient Josie Edick

Josie Edick
Josie Edick

Annually, the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Section at Michigan Tech awards scholarships to students who are active in the organization to help with their university expenses.

Josie Edick, a junior in Chemical Engineering met or exceeded the scholarship criteria: “we are looking for students who share the same values as SWE, and will or have made a positive impact on our school and organization. Remember the SWE Core Values and the SWE Motto: Aspire, Advance, Achieve.”

She also received an SWE National Scholarship, the 2020 Bayer Scholarship. We greatly appreciate Bayer’s support of SWE collegiates. Edick has not only completed a co-op at Shaw Industries but she has served as our section treasurer for the past two years.

“Congratulations, Josie on your scholarships and accomplishments.”

Gretchen Hein, SWE Advisor

Faith Morrison Recognized by Fraternities and Sororities

Faith A. Morrison
Faith A. Morrison

Last Sunday (Jan. 24), more than 160 computer screens of students, faculty, staff and community members gathered for the 15th Annual Fraternity and Sorority Life Awards Ceremony held via Zoom.

In addition to the many student awards presented, Order of Omega, the Fraternity and Sorority Life Honor Society that coordinates the awards, took the time to recognize some exceptional faculty and staff members.

There are more than 460 students in fraternities and sororities at Michigan Tech, and Order of Omega wanted to emphasize that these awards were coming directly from the students.

The following faculty and staff members were nominated by members of the Greek community and recognized at the 2021 Fraternity and Sorority Life Awards Ceremony (winners are in bold type):

Faculty

  • Gordon Parker (Mechanical Engineering)
  • Faith Morrison (Chemical Engineering)
  • Glen Archer (Electrical & Computer Engineering)

Staff

  • Alan Turnquist (Waino Wahtera Center for Student Success)
  • Jessie Stapleton (Student Leadership & Involvement)

Advisors

  • Laura Bulleit (Dean of Students)
  • Alyssa Fredin (Student Financial Services)
  • James Schmierer (Forest Resources & Environmental Science)
  • Jannah Tumey (Center for Educational Outreach)
  • Jeannie DeClerck (Instructional Design & Assessment)
  • Joe Cooper (Interim VP for Student Affairs and Dean of Students)

These nominations were written by individual students and were supported by an entire fraternity or sorority. Congratulations to all of these faculty and staff members who were nominated and thank you for inspiring and motivating students. A complete list of all the award winners can be found on the Student Leadership and Involvement web page.

by Fraternity and Sorority Life


Chemical Engineering Convocation 2020

The Chemical Engineering Department recently celebrated the success of its graduates through a Virtual Convocation on April 13, 2020. The guest speaker was Michael Cleveland (’82) who shared some tips on “How to Become Invaluable During Uncertain Times.”

Keynote Speaker

Michael J. Cleveland

Michael J. Cleveland ’82

Mike Cleveland serves as the vice president and general manager for UOP LLC, based in the Des Plaines, Illinois Lifecycle Solutions and Technology business at Honeywell UOP.

UOP is a leading international supplier of process technology, catalysts, engineered systems, and technical and engineering services to the petroleum refining, petrochemical, and gas processing industries.

Since joining UOP in 1982, Mike has held key positions within UOP, spanning research and development, manufacturing, and business management. Mike was critical in the commercialization of new hydrocracking catalysts, isomerization catalysts, and on-purpose propylene process technology.

Before being named to his current post in 2019, Mike served as the General Manager for UOP CH based in Rolle, Switzerland within the Catalyst, Adsorbents, and Specialties business.

Mike earned a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Michigan Technological University in 1982 and began his career with UOP upon graduation. Mike is a licensed professional engineer in the State of Michigan and Illinois. He is an active member the Michigan Tech Alumni Association.

Students were recognized with the following awards:

Prevent Accidents with Safety (PAWS) Award

Daniella Kyllonen

Dow Chemical Marriot W. Bredekamp Award

Ellie Bruckner, Bryce Evan, Nate Giem, and Kate Schaaf

This award recognizes outstanding technical skills in the laboratory, outstanding teamwork and professionalism, effective oral and written communication, and strong adherence to process safety practices as recognized by your peers and supported by the faculty of the department. This award is in memory of Dr. Mariott W. Bredekamp.

Kimberly Clark Communication Award

Nate Giem

This award recognizes the winner of the Award for Excellence in Communication from the Department of Chemical Engineering for the academic year.

Kimberly Clark Professional Ethics Award

Clara Peterson

This award recognizes a student who has exhibited exemplary ethics and admirable professional conduct during Plant Design and Unit Operations experiences, and throughout their academic career at Michigan Technological University.

Davis W. Hubbard Outstanding Rising Senior Award

Tanner Shehan

Chair’s Award

Jacob LeBarre

The Chair’s Award for Outstanding ChE Senior recognizes a particular student in the graduating class whose actions embody excellence. Excelling in academics is expected, but the recipient must also exhibit the traits of character, leadership, and service–to-others that are valued to the department.

John Patton Senior Design Team Awards

1st Place

Abigail Hendrix, Ben McKenzie, Korey McKinley, Collin Mitchell

2nd Place

Ryan Knoll, Hunter Osgood, Bronson Wood, Cody Woodbury

3rd Place

Christen Calanayan, Zach Hancock, Brenden Presnell, Stephan  RhodeHumphries, David Scherzer

Student Leadership Awards

  • AEE: Jacob Zuhlke
  • AIChE: Jacob Luchenbill
  • CMLC: Jacob LeBarre
  • CPM: Nick Vlahos
  • OXE: Erin Parker
  • SAB: Nate Giem

AIChE Awards

Teacher of the Year Award

Dr. Faith Morrison

Research Mentor of the Year Award

Dr. Caryn Heldt

Graduate Teaching Assistant of the Year Award

Utkarsh Chaudhari

Undergraduate Grader of the Year

Liz Hoekstra

Staff Making a Difference Award

Katie Torrey


Daniel Kulas to Present at NAMS 2020

Graduate student Daniel Kulas has been awarded the prestigious 2020 NAMS (North American Membrane Society) Elias Klein Travel Supplement Award to present his comprehensive experimental work on the rejection mechanisms of the four most significant PFAS molecules: PFOA, PFOS, PFNA and PFHxS by Nanofiltration membrane NF270.

The presentation will be at the conference in Tempe, Arizona on May 16-20, 2020. Kulas was nominated by his research mentor Andre Da Costa.

The Elias Klein Founders’ Travel Supplement program supports students needing limited financial assistance and will provide up to $500 in reimbursement for reasonable expenses (e.g. travel cost, registration, workshops) for attending NAMS 2020 to present their research (oral or poster presentation). This award program is named in honor of Elias Klein, whose vision and spirit guided the founding of NAMS in 1985.


Chemical Engineering Convocation 2019

Chair's Award
Chair’s Award
(L) Summer Oley

Chair’s Award

Dr. Pradeep Agrawal presented this award to Summer Oley.

The Chair’s Award for Outstanding ChE Senior recognizes a particular student in the graduating class whose actions embody excellence. Excelling in academics is expected, but the recipient must also exhibit the traits of character, leadership, and service–to-others that are valued to the department.

Kimberly Clark Communication Award
Kimberly Clark Communication Award
(L) Sarah Boyd

Kimberly Clark Communication Award

Dr. John Sandell presented the award to Sarah Boyd.

This award recognizes the winner of the Award for Excellence in Communication from the Department of Chemical Engineering for the academic year.

Kimberly Clark Professional Ethics Award
Kimberly Clark Professional Ethics Award
(L) Charlie Biyong

Kimberly Clark Professional Ethics Award

Dr. John Sandell presented the award to Charlie Biyong.

This award recognizes a student who has exhibited exemplary ethics and admirable professional conduct during Plant Design and Unit Operations experiences, and throughout their academic career at Michigan Technological University.

PAWS Award
PAWS Award
(L-R) James Sutton, Adam Schmidt, Noelle Eveland, Sarah Boyd

Prevent Accidents with Safety (PAWS) Award

Dr. Julia King presented awards to James Sutton, Adam Schmidt, Noelle Eveland, and Sarah Boyd.

Bredekamp Award
Bredekamp Award
(L-R) Madison Paul, Nicholas Olson, Logan Piegols, Kayla Furmanski, Robert Dupont

Dow Chemical Marriot W. Bredekamp Award

Dr. Julia King presented awards to Madison Paul, Nicholas Olson, Logan Piegols, Kayla Furmanski, and Robert Dupont.

This award recognizes outstanding technical skills in the laboratory, outstanding teamwork and professionalism, effective oral and written communication, and strong adherence to process safety practices as recognized by your peers and supported by the faculty of the department. This award is in memory of Dr. Mariott W. Bredekamp.

Patton Award 1st Place
Patton Award 1st Place
(L-R) Madison Peggs, Laura Nitz, Amelia Henrickson, Maggie Evans

John Patton Senior Design Team Award—1st Place

Maggie Evans, Amelia Henrickson, Laura Nitz, Madison Peggs

Patton Award 2nd Place
Patton Award 2nd Place
(L-R) Andrew Watson and Michael Verbeke

John Patton Senior Design Team Award—2nd Place

Michael Verbeke, Andrew Watson, Missing: Zachary Oldenburg, Sam Root

Patton Award 3rd Place
Patton Award 3rd Place
(L-R) William Otto, Keegan Kroening, Seth Kriz, Bailey Mohrenweiser

John Patton Senior Design Team Award—3rd Place

William Otto, Keegan Kroening, Seth Kriz, Bailey Mohrenweiser

Professor of the Year
Professor of the Year
(R) Dr. Jeana Collins

Professor of the Year

Dr. Jeana Collins

Research Mentors of the Year
Research Mentors of the Year
Dr. Caryn Heldt, Dr. Faith Morrison, Dr. Timothy Eisele

Research Mentors of the Year

Dr. Caryn Heldt, Dr. Faith Morrison, Dr. Timothy Eisele

VIEW THE PHOTO GALLERY


EPA Awards Student Team to Solve End-of-Life Lithium-Ion Battery Challenge

Lithium ion batteryThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced more than $450,000 in funding for six Phase II student teams as part of the People, Prosperity and the Planet (P3) grant program. These teams, made up of undergraduate and graduate students from across the country, are building upon their successes in Phase I of the P3 grant competition where they designed innovate solutions to real-world environmental and public health challenges. With Phase II funding, the teams will now further develop those projects and designs to ensure they can be sustainably implemented in the field.

Michigan Tech is a recipient for the project Separation and Recovery of Individual Components from the End-of-Life Lithium-Ion Batteries.

Read more at EPA News Releases.

Extract

The principal investigator is Assistant Professor Lei Pan.

Lithium-ion battery technology has become a state-of-the-art energy storage solution for consumer electronics, electric vehicles, and renewable energy. Because these batteries are expected to last only 2-10 years, they will enter the waste stream after reaching the end of their life cycles. The objective of the phase II project is to scale up the Li-ion battery recycling process from the bench scale that has been completed in the phase I project to a small-scale production prototype.

This project will provide approximately five undergraduate research assistant positions to students of diverse background at Michigan Technological University. These students will gain hands-on experience and interact with industrial partners. In addition, undergraduate students will be given opportunities to attend national and local conferences to present their research. The team will develop a mini mobile lab for high-school and middle-school teachers to teach engineering in their classrooms.


Sustainable Living Open House

Sustainability Demonstration House
Sustainability Demonstration House

Interested in sustainable living and green architecture? Do you desire to reduce your personal impact on the earth? Come check out Michigan Tech’s Sustainability Demonstration House (SDH) from 4 to 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 4, 2018.

Sustainable features that have been added to the house over the past year include an 8.6kW solar array system, Wifi-controlled LED bulbs, an aquaponics system, composting, waste output tracking, low-flow faucets and shower heads, induction cooktops and so much more.

The SDH team and current tenants will be at this event to answer any questions you may have regarding energy efficient housing designs and sustainable living practices. Refreshments will be served. The address is 21680 Woodland Rd, Houghton. Contact the Alternative Energy Enterprise with any questions.

By the by Alternative Energy Enterprise.