Category: General

Special Volunteer Opportunity: Wolf-Moose Research Program

Isle Royale, Summer 2012. Isle Royale MooseJoin us in the field for a Moosewatch research expedition as part of the Wolf-Moose Study program on Isle Royale!
Do you have an interest in wildlife ecology and wolf-moose dynamics? Are you passionate about wilderness camping and our National Parks? Are you a hardy soul with a tolerance for bugs, lack of conveniences, and long days of rugged hiking? If so, please consider a special opportunity to volunteer for the renowned wolf-moose study at Isle Royale National Park. Expedition teams are being organized right now
Expedition #1: May 5–13, via Voyageur II, Grand Portage, MN
Expedition #2: May 14– 21, via Queen IV, Copper Harbor, MI
Expedition #3: May 26–June 3, via Voyageur II, Grand Portage, MN
Expedition #4: July 31–August 8, via Ranger III, Houghton, MI

Please visit (click on Research Expeditions) to learn about how you can participate this summer. You will find information about the Moosewatch research expeditions, photos, and how to apply. If you have specific questions, please contact Ken Vrana (, director, Isle Royale Institute.

We hope to see some of you on the island this summer!
John Vucetich and Leah Vucetich
Rolf Peterson and Candy Peterson

Jason Caron – 2002

Eli and Jason Caron show their Michigan Tech pride.

Jason Caron sent in this cute picture of his son Elijah sporting his Michigan Tech gear. Jason says that Eli is growing like a weed ( he is 16 months old here) and he had to get one more picture before Eli out grew the shirt! Jason reports that all is going well in Sault Ste. Marie where he is a forester with the Michigan DNR in their Soo field office.

Students Earn Award at SAF

Congratulations to Master of Forestry students Eric Dunnack, Conor Bell, Ken Kettler, Kara Oikarinen, Mike Premer, Joanna Rogers, for winning the second place award for their poster titled Varying Levels of Known Causal Factors and the Possibility of Epicormic Branching on Acer saccharum.

Picture with their award-winning poster are (from left to right): Kara Oikarinen, Mike Premer, Ken Kettler and Conor Bell

This group of  students presented their poster at the Society of American Foresters National Convention in Honolulu, Hawaii in November 2011. The project was funded by McIntire-Stennis. They are advised by Professor Jim Pickens.

Rolf Peterson receives Certificate of Distinction

Research Professor – Robbins Chair, Rolf Peterson has received the  2012 Certificate of Distinction from the Purdue Ag Alumni Association.  The Certificate is the highest recognition conferred by the Association.

Rob Swihart, Professor and Head of the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources said, “Notably, in my 20 years at Purdue, this is the first occasion of which I’m aware in which an alumnus in wildlife has been recognized!  By any measure, your achievements certainly warrant such recognition, and I know that our faculty, staff, and students will be thrilled with the news. ”

Congratulations to Rolf!

Excellent Teachers

Congratulations to Michael Falkowski, Shekhar Joshi, Linda Nagel, and Tom Pypker for ranking in the top 10% of the student evaluations for the question: “Taking everything into account, I consider this instructor to be an excellent teacher.”
They received scores from 4.89-5.00 on these evaluations for spring semester, 2011. Great job!!

Joe Kovach – 1987 (MS)

The School of Forest Resources is saddened to learn of the recent passing of our alumnus  Joe Kovach (1958 – 2011)

This obituary and picture was published in the Wausau Daily Herald on November 1, 2011

Joseph A. Kovach

Joseph A. Kovach, 53, Wausau, died Saturday, Oct. 29, 2011, at Aspirus Hospice House in Wausau.

He was born Jan. 19, 1958, in Livorno, Italy, to Alexander and Virginia (Beatty) Kovach. Joseph’s father was a military man and, therefore, Joseph was able to travel the world as an army child. He was a graduate of both Penn State University(undergrad) and Michigan Tech where he completed his masters.

Joseph was married and divorced. He spent much time in Ecuador. He first went there as a Peace Corps volunteer from 1981 to 1983. He enjoyed it so much he later returned to work there as a forester for Baltek Corp. for eight years. It was at this time that he met and married the mother of his two children. They later settled in Wausau. Joseph worked in the Forestry Division for the DNR for 18 years as a forest ecologist and silviculturist.

He is survived by his mother, Virginia (Beatty) Kovach, Roy, Utah; son, Jesse Kovach, Wausau; daughter, Alexis Kovach, Madison; sisters, Judith Kovach, Wausau, and Kitty Kovach, Roy, Utah; nephew, David Kovach; and other loving family and friends.

Service with visitation will be from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2011, at John J. Buettgen Funeral Home, Schofield.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Society of American Foresters and the Foresters Fund.

John J. Buettgen Funeral Home is assisting the family.