Day: March 15, 2011

Michigan Tech Hosts Statewide Equity Conference

Michigan Tech will host faculty, staff and administrators from public and private colleges and universities, community colleges and precollege GEAR UP programs across Michigan at the annual King Chavez Parks Equity Within the Classroom Conference, March 27-29 in the Memorial Union Ballroom. The conference theme is “The Changing Face of America: Helping Michigan Compete.”

Featured speakers will include:

Monday, March 28

  • 8:45 to 9:45 a.m., Valerie Young, an expert on the “imposter syndrome” and author of a popular career newsletter called “Changing Course,” will present “How to Feel as Bright and Capable as Everyone Seems to Think You Are: Why Smart People Suffer from the Imposter Syndrome and What to Do About It.”
  • 1 to 2 p.m., Howard G. Adams is the founder and president of a Norfolk, Va.-based consulting firm that provides, leadership, career planning and diversity-related training programs for universities and other organizations.
  • 4:45 to 5:30 p.m., Maya Kobersy, assistant general counsel at the University of Michigan, will talk about the legal landscape for diversity in higher education.

Tuesday, March 29

  • 8:15 to 8:45 a.m., Kimberly Houston-Philpot, president of the Dow Corning Foundation and global community relations director for the Dow Corning Corporation, will present a corporate view of equity and diversity.
  • 10 to 11 a.m., Michael Boulus, executive director of the Presidents’ Council, State Universities of Michigan, will present “Moving Michigan Forward into the Knowledge Economy.”
  • 11:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m., Sandra Begay-Campbell, who leads efforts at Sandia National Laboratories to assist Native American tribes with renewable energy development, will talk about how America can stay competitive in the STEM fields.

Workshops will also be offered on effective cross-cultural communication, recruiting minority students to graduate school, the Michigan College Access Network, getting a campus climate survey started, free web-based math programs, partnerships and 3M’s science outreach programs.

Registration is free, but space is limited. To register for one or more sessions, visit

Published in Tech Today.

Graduate Student Government Sponsors Research Colloquium

The Graduate Student Government recently sponsored their annual Graduate Research Colloquium, featuring presentations and posters.  The annual event was capped off by an awards banquet where students and faculty were honored.

Honorees included:

  • Outstanding Graduate Mentor Award presented to Dr. Chris Middlebrook
  • Exceptional Graduate Student Scholar presented to Hessam Ghassemi
  • Exceptional Graduate Student Leader presented to Kevin Cassell
  • Winners of the poster and presentation competition
  • Recent recipients of the Dean’s Award for Outstanding Scholarship
  • Recent recipients of the Graduate Student Service Award
  • Recent recipients of the Outstanding Graduate Student Teaching Award

Photographs of the posters and awardees can be found online.

Michigan Tech Graduate Student Wins a Spot in International Satellite Imaging Competition

There is trouble in paradise. What used to be home to half a million people making a living farming, raising livestock or fishing, the land is becoming inhospitable to vegetation. The flocks of migratory birds that used to fill the skies are rarely seen.

The region used to be called the Garden of Eden. It’s located in a region of Iraq known as Mesopotamia, a formerly fertile valley between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers that is becoming increasingly arid due to rising salinity of the soil. Now a graduate student at Michigan Tech, originally from Iraq himself, has developed a plan to use high-resolution satellite imagery to analyze the salinity of the ground and–hopefully–find ways to make the Garden of Eden fertile again.

DigitalGlobe, a company that manufactures a high-resolution, 8-band sensor for satellite imaging, found the project so innovative and promising that they have invited Sinan Abood, a PhD student in environmental engineering, to participate in a worldwide competition called the 8-Band Challenge. More than 500 proposals were submitted; Abood’s is one of 10 that were accepted. The competition, open to graduate students and postdoctoral research fellows, is slated to be judged this spring.

See Tech Today for more about Sinan’s research.