Sixth Annual D-80 Conference

The sixth annual conference sponsored by Michigan Tech’s international D80 Center was held on Saturday, Nov. 3, at the Great Lakes Research Center. The D80 conferences highlight service and research work done by students and faculty from Tech and elsewhere. They are open to anybody interested in design and development of projects to serve the poorest 80 percent of humanity.

On Saturday evening, a program called D80 Buzz featured 15 speakers, following a format called Pecha Kucha 20×20, in which each speaker shows 20 slides for 20 seconds each, talking as the slides auto-forward. It is a format developed in 2003 by two architects to counter what they call “the tendency of creative people to talk too much.”

Dedicated to prosperity by design, the D80 Center at Michigan Tech works to assist the most vulnerable 80 percent of humanity in meeting their basic needs for food, water, shelter, sanitation, waste disposal, energy, income and education. Tech students, faculty and staff work on projects on campus and in economically developing communities around the world.

The participants were:
7:00 pm, Jonathan May, Developing a sustainable water source in rural Guatemala
7:10 pm, Katie Valenzuela, No tome la chicha (Don’t drink the chicha)
7:20 pm, Jess Hammersley, Technology Abroad
7:30 pm, Miriam Rios-Sanchez, Remote sensing: A rapid assessment tool to use in water resources studies in developing countries
7:40 pm, Gerard Caneba, Summer 2012 visit to Uganda
7:50 pm, Helena Keller, Monkey Business
8:00 pm, Mark DeYoung, Dealing With the Pits
8:10 pm, Brennan Tymrak, Using Appropedia as a Research Platform for Sustainable Development

8:40 pm, Dave Watkins, The Six Americas as Viewed from India
8:50 pm, Nicole Westphal, Pavlis in India
9:00 pm, Richelle Winkler, Solar Water Disinfection with Salt– Investigating Applications
9:10 pm, Ty Losinski, Micro-Hydro Power in a Coconut Shell!
9:20 pm, Andrea Walvatne, Cooking in a Guatemalan Kitchen
9:30 pm, Kelli Whelan, Up in Smoke: Kitchen 2.0
9:40 pm, Rebecca Bender, Hard Body Engineering, Water Distribution in the Hills of Panama

Students Named to National, Regional SWE Posts

Tech Today Article by Travis Gendron, student writer

Two members of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) section at Michigan Tech, Kaitlyn Bunker and Alicia Walby, have been elected to regional and national positions within the organization.

Bunker, an electrical engineering PhD student, is the new collegiate director of SWE and sits on its national board of directors. The collegiate director is the only student who sits on the board, and Bunker is responsible for giving the collegiate members a voice. “I’ll be the first graduate student in the position in quite a while. I also come from a smaller, but really active section, so I can bring a new perspective,” she said.

Women in STEM: Ada Lovelace Celebration

Michigan Tech held its inaugural celebration of Ada Lovelace Day, an annual event held to recognize the accomplishments and contributions of women to the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics and to encourage young women to pursue careers in STEM fields.

Tech’s celebration involved a two-day series of events beginning on Tuesday, Oct. 16, in Fisher 139 as Professor Martha Sloan (ECE) and guest speakers Mary Long and Michelle Eggart discuss their experiences as women working in STEM fields.

On Wednesday, Oct. 17, from 8 to 10 p.m., in Fisher 135 there was  a film screening of “The Gender Chip Project” followed by a panel discussion featuring female faculty and graduate students from departments across campus, including Sarah Green, Nina Mahmoudian, Laura Brown, Patty Sotirin and Kaitlyn Bunker, who  discussed their experiences as women in STEM disciplines of academia.

MORE Information

Great Lakes Innovation and Technology Report

The latest Great Lakes Innovation and Technology Report (GLITR), published by CBS Detroit, featured two extensive stories about Michigan Tech research and new initiatives, part of GLITR’s annual Tech Tour of state universities. See “Tech Tour Day Two: Solar Power, Star Trek Replicators, New Drugs At Michigan Tech”
and “Tech Tour Day Three: Finnish French Toast, Medical Miracles, Green Racing And A Mineral Wonderland”.

Michigan Tech Research Institute (Ann Arbor) Research Projects Presented

Michigan Tech Research Institute (Ann Arbor) researchers shared their posters and time to talk about their work during a day-long poster presentation session in the Atrium of the Dow Environmental Sciences and Engineering Building. Numerous faculty and students had the chance to study the posters and meet with the researchers for potential internships, collaboration and inspiration.

View pictures and video clips and links to research project posters and more information

Lake Superior Water Festival

The 2012 Lake Superior Water Festival was held at the Great Lakes Research Center
Friday, October 5, 2012. The Water Festival program
enthralled over 1,000 students in grades 4-8 classes from regional schools, in addition to triggering excitement amongst their teachers and the parent chaperones who accompanied them.

There were a total of 67 presenters volunteering their time throughout the day, in addition to 34 Michigan Tech students who served as guides leading the classes to their various sessions in and around the Great Lakes Research Center. A total of 30 different sessions on a wide range of topics related to Lake Superior and water resources were presented.
Link for photos and videos of Lake Superior Water Festival –

First-Year Engineering Lecture Series: David House

This Fall Semester the new class of engineering students assembled in the Rozsa Center Performance Hall to hear a speech by Michigan Tech alumnus David House on September 4th, first day of classes. He shared his engineering experiences from a 47 year career.

Watch the Video “David House Speaks to the Engineering College at Michigan Tech”
on Engineering – Michigan Tech Channel on Vimeo


Research Experience for Teachers (RET)

Michigan Tech is again hosting seven middle and high school teachers from Michigan and Wisconsin in a six-week Research Experience for Teachers (RET), a program funded by the National Science Foundation, which ends this week.
The teachers presented posters on their research experiences, as well as the development of classroom/laboratory units, Friday, Aug. 17, in Memorial Union Alumni Lounge B.