Category: Community Outreach Programs

Register for After School Science and Engineering Classes

Registration is open for after school science and engineering classes for students in grades 1 – 5. Six class sessions will take place from 4 to 5:30 p.m on the days specified by the class. Houghton Elementary School bus will drop off students at the GLRC by 3:45 p.m. Transportation from Houghton Elementary will be provided by Lamers at no additional cost.

Students will get to experience hands-on explorations taught by Michigan Tech science and engineering students and staff at the Great Lakes Research Center (104 GLRC). The different class options are listed below.

Grades 1-2: Rock and Roll!

This class takes place on Tuesdays (Oct. 8 – Nov. 12). Students will explore rocks, learn about fossils and participate in hands-on activities to discover the many uses of minerals! Erika Vye, from the Geological & Mining Engineering & Science department will be the instructor.

Grades 3-5 Autumn Animal Adventures

This class takes place on Mondays (Oct. 7 – Nov. 11). Set trail cameras and sticky traps to see which animals and insects call the MTU campus home. Learn about habits and habitats of bats, bears and wolves. Students will explore wildlife ecology in the classroom and outside. Brian Doughty, M.S. Biological Sciences, will be the instructor.

The cost to enroll in an after school class is $95 per student. Registration deadline is today, (Oct. 3). Register online. Any questions can be directed to 7-3341 or

Outreach in Natural Resources and Engineering

Eighteen high school students from Detroit and across the Lower Peninsula are spending six days at Michigan Tech from July 22-27 to explore Natural Resources and Engineering majors and consider attending Michigan Technological University. The program is in its fifth year.

Students will investigate drinking water treatment, autonomous vehicles, forest management, and more, with Michigan Tech faculty from Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics (ME-EM), Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE), Electrical and Computing Engineering (ECE), as well as natural resource agencies, such as the US Forest Service. Students will participate in hands-on engineering explorations and enjoy a variety of outdoor activities, from kayaking to mountain biking and hiking at Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park.

Some of the engineering-related explorations include:

  • Value of STEM Careers with Dr. Janet Callahan, Dean of the College of Engineering
  • Water Use and Cleaning Wastewater with Joan Chadde, Center for Science and Environmental Outreach (CSEO)
  • Water Treatment and the Flint Water Crisis with Brian Doughty, CSEO
  • Water Treatment Technologies with Ryan Kibler, Benjamin Cerrados, and Dr. Daisuke Minakata, CEE
  • Demo of acoustic triangulation and underwater autonomous vehicles with Dr. Andrew Barnard and Miles Penhale, ME-EM
  • Stream Lab and Green Land and Water Management Practices, with Dr. Brian Barkdoll, CEE
  • Tour of Flood Damage in Houghton (and Detroit): Why does flooding occur and how can it be mitigated? with Dr. Alex Mayer, CEE, and Mike Reed, Detroit Zoological Society
  • Self-Driving Vehicles with Dr. Jeremy P. Bos, ECE

The program is coordinated by Michigan Tech Center for Science and Environmental Outreach, with funding from: Michigan Space Grant Consortium, Michigan Tech School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science, College of Engineering, Departments of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics, Admissions, Housing and Residential Life, Great Lakes Research Center, and the Michigan Space Grant Consortium.

For more information, contact: Joan Chadde at 906-487-3341/906-369-1121 or

Lake Superior Water Festival Wednesday

Beach of Lake Superior
Sunset over Lake Superior

More than 700 elementary, middle and high-school students from 10 Western Upper Peninsula schools will gather at Michigan Technological University’s Great Lakes Research Center on Wednesday, Oct. 17 for the Seventh Annual Lake Superior Water Festival.

Participating schools include Baraga High School, Barkell Elementary (Hancock), CLK Elementary (Calumet), EB Holman (Stanton Township), Houghton Middle School, Luther L. Wright High School (Ironwood), Jeffers Middle School (Adams Township), Lake Linden-Hubbell Middle School, South Range Elementary and Washington Middle School (Calumet).

Students from 30 classes will participate in 24 different sessions presented by Michigan Tech scientists and graduate students, along with presenters from the U.S. Coast Guard, Ottawa National Forest, Isle Royale National Park, Keweenaw Bay Indian Community, BHK AmeriCorps and the Copper Harbor Trails Club.

The Water Festival provides an opportunity for students to learn about and celebrate our most precious natural resource – the Great Lakes! A wide variety of topics from science and engineering to creative writing will be presented.  Students will attend four 35-minute activities. Some of the topics to be presented include remotely operated vehicles, leave no trace outdoors, cleaning wastewater, careers with the U.S. Coast Guard, the chemistry of corrosion, design a fog harvester and more.

The 2018 Water Festival is coordinated by Michigan Tech’s Center for Science and Environmental Outreach, with funding from the Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative and Michigan Tech’s Great Lakes Research Center.

For more information contact Joan Chadde, director of the Center for Science and Environmental Outreach.