Category: Succeeding in Graduate School

Articles about professional development and seminar announcements.

AREMA 2013 Annual Conference scholarship winners

Seventeen students from the Michigan Tech Rail Transportation Program (RTP) traveled to Indianapolis to attend the 2013 Railway Interchange Exhibition and American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-Way Association (AREMA) 2013 Annual Conference.  Students attended technical sessions and committee meetings. The students also provided support for the National University Rail Center (NURail) booth at the Exhibition. Michigan Tech is a member of the seven university NURail consortium.

Michigan Tech students, Antonio Passariello and Tanja Mattonen, were invited to be two of the four student interns of the Conference Operating Committee.  Seven Michigan Tech RTP students were identified as AREMA scholarship winners, pulling in over $7,000 in scholarships and 20 percent of the winners nationwide.  Congratulations to:  Dylan Anderson, Chris Blessing, Antonio Passariello, Sean Pengelly, Hamed Pouryousef, Irfan Rasul, and Nicholas Lanoue.  Click here for a complete description of the scholarships.

Pasi Lautala, 2007 PhD graduate, received the second prize in the AREMA Member-Get-A-Member Campaign, awarded at the annual conference.

Published in Tech Today.


Stepping Out in Style: Toward an Artificial Leg with a Natural Gait

Humans rarely walk the straight and narrow; something’s always in the way. So Michigan Tech scientists are developing a computer-controlled prosthesis to make it much easier for amputees to turn as they walk.

In cooperation with a Mayo Clinic scientist, researchers at Michigan Tech are taking a giant step toward solving the problem. They are making a bionic foot that could make an amputee’s walk in the park feel, well, like a walk in the park.

Assistant Professor Mo Rastgaar and PhD student Evandro Ficanha
The secret lies in the ankle. Mo Rastgaar, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering–engineering mechanics, and PhD student Evandro Ficanha are working on a microprocessor-controlled ankle-foot prosthesis that comes close to achieving the innate range of motion of this highly complex joint.

These computerized artificial legs have pressure-sensitive sensors on the bottom of the foot that detect how the amputee is walking. The sensors instantaneously send signals to a microprocessor, which in turn adjusts the prosthesis to make walking more natural.

For the full story see Michigan Tech News

Published in Tech Today by Marcia Goodrich, magazine editor


Cyber Citizens article published in UP news website

Upper Peninsula Second Wave, a UP news website, published article about Michigan Tech’s Cyber Citizens and their development of a citizen scientist smartphone application called EthnoApp.

The Cyber Citizens project goal is to build smartphone apps and websites that connect average citizens with scientists to help acquire valuable environmental information across the world.

A team of graduate and undergrad students at Tech led by Alex Mayer, a professor of civil and environmental engineering, and Robert Pastel, a professor of computer science, have worked to develop four different apps so far.

For more on the article, click here

Published in Tech Today


Accepting applications for 2014 Ford Foundation Fellowships Programs

Applications are being accepted for the 2014 Ford Foundation Fellowships Programs for Achieving Excellence in College and University Teaching.  Full eligibility information and online applications are available on our website at: http://nationalacademies.org/ford

Eligibility Requirements:

  • U.S. citizens, nationals, permanent residents, or individuals granted deferred action status under the DACA program
  • Planning a career in teaching and research at the college or university level in a research-based filed of science, social science or humanities

Stipends and Allowances:

  • Predoctoral–$20,000 to the fellow, institutional allowance of $2,000 for three years
  • Dissertation–$21,000 for one year
  • Postdoctoral–$40,000 for one year, $1,500 employing institution allowance, to be matched by employing institution

Awardees have expenses paid to attend one Conference of Ford Fellows.

Approximately 60 predoctoral, 35 dissertation, and 24 postdoctoral fellowships sponsored by the Ford Foundation and administered by the National Research Council of the National Academies.

Application Deadline Dates:

  • Predoctoral: November 20, 2013
  • Dissertation: November 15, 2013
  • Postdoctoral: November 15, 2013

For Further information please contact:

Fellowships Office, Keck 576
National Research Council of the National Academies
500 Fifth Street NW
Washington, DC 20001
Phone: 202.334.2872
Fax: 202.334.3419

infofell@nas.edu


Univ of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program

The University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program was established in 1984 to encourage outstanding women and minority Ph.D. recipients to pursue academic careers at the University of California.  The current program offers postdoctoral research fellowships and faculty mentoring to outstanding scholars in all fields whose research, teaching, and service will contribute to the diversity and equal opportunity at UC.

Fellowships are awarded for research conducted at any one of the University of California’s ten campuses or the three UC-affiliated National Laboratories—Lawrence Berkeley, Lawrence Livermore, and Los Alamos National Laboratories.

Each award is for a minimum of 12-months and may be renewable for an additional term upon demonstration of academic/research productivity and includes:

  • Competitive salary
  • Benefits package including health insurance and paid vacation/sick leave
  • Up to $5,000 for research-related and program travel expenses.

ELIGIBILITY: U.S. citizens or permanent residents and must hold or receive a Ph.D. from an accredited university before the start of their fellowship.

Apply online before the deadline November 1, 2013

For more information, visit online: ppfp.ucop.edu/info or email: ppfpinfo@berkeley.edu


ORAU provides funding for Lindau Meeting in Germany

Since 1951, Nobel Laureates in chemistry, physics, and physiology/medicine convene annually in Lindau, Germany, to have open and informal meetings with students and young researchers.  These students will travel to Lindau to participate in discussions with the Nobel Laureates, as well as other graduate students and junior researchers from around the world.

The 64th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting dedicated to physiology or medicine will be held June 29 through July 4, 2014.   Nomination deadline is Friday, November 1, 2013 4:00 pm, Eastern Time..

The 5th Lindau Meeting on Economic Sciences will be held August 19 through August 23, 2014.  Nomination deadline is Friday, November 15, 2013 4:00 pm, Eastern Time.

Transportation, lodging and registration expenses are arranged and paid for by the sponsoring agencies.  Participants meet in Washington, D.C., for an orientation meeting and travel as a group to Germany.  A student awardee will be committed to travel from June 27 or 28, 2014 until July 5 or 6, 2014.  The final dates will be determined at a later date.

Federal budget uncertainties prohibit a formal announcement of an internal due date for applications.  ORAU member institutions may nominate one student per university.  Your institution will also be invited to nominate additional students by our partnering organizations.

Further information about the program, and the web site for submission of nominations, can be found online at http://www.orau.org/lindau/.

The meetings will feature recipients of the Nobel Prize in Medicine/Physiology and Economics.

Eligibility:

  • U.S. citizens currently enrolled at a university as full-time graduate students;
  • Completed by June 2014 at least two academic years of graduate studies toward a doctoral degree in the discipline of medicine/physiology or a related discipline, but not be planning a dissertation/thesis defense before December 31, 2014  (Note: eligibility requirements for the Economics Meeting will vary)

We are especially interested in receiving nominations from a diverse group of students, including women, minorities and people with disabilities.

If you have any questions or need further information, please contact Sam Held (sam.held@orau.org) or me (ann.farler@orau.org).


Michigan Tech Students Take Top Honors at SME

Michigan Tech undergraduates and graduate students studying chemical engineering took first and second place in the Society for Mining, Metallurgy and Exploration’s (SME) Mineral and Metallurgical Processing Division 2013 student poster contest at the SME annual meeting in Denver.

Undergraduate winners:
First place: Katrina Swanson
Second place: Paul Hagadone II

Graduate student winners:
First place: Brett Spigarelli
Second place: Howard Haselhuhn

Published in TechToday


Fall Career Fair Features New Companies and Veteran Recruiter

With 264 companies registered for the Fall Career Fair on Tuesday, Sept. 24, recruiters are running the gamut from new to renewed to never-miss-a-fair.

Among the new companies, according to Jim Turnquist, director of Career Services, is Chevron. Although they have recruited and hired on their own on campus, this year they’ve joined the job fair and expanded their search.

“In the past, they focused on geology, but this year they are looking for many different engineering fields: chemical, civil, electrical, environmental, mechanical,” Turnquist says. “That’s a big plus.”

Back after a hiatus from recruiting is Procter and Gamble. They are scouting for chemical, electrical and mechanical engineers, Turnquist says. “This is fantastic.”

A new company to the fair is Tata Motors, India’s largest auto manufacturer. “They have an IT branch, called Consultancy Services, which is also huge,” he says.

Old favorites like Dow Chemical have increased their presence. Instead of a couple of interview rooms, they’ve reserved eight for the day after the fair.

The Career Fair has grown into a week-plus of activities, Turnquist says, in both the fall and spring semesters. Interview skills training and resume blitzes have already started, and fair week has numerous events:

* Chrysler and GM both had ride and drive events. Chrysler’s Sunday Copper Harbor trips were all full. GM’s events were split between faculty and staff (Sunday) and students (Monday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) leaving from the pay lot, next to the Administration and Student Services building. More information is available at career@mtu.edu.

* The Society of Women Engineers hosts Evening with Industry, where recruiters can meet with students before the fair. It will be held tonight at 5:15 p.m. in the MUB Ballroom.

* The University Department Information Fair (Meet the Faculty) is held from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Tuesday at the fair. Academic and administrative departments can meet with company representatives.

* Center for Diversity and Inclusion Corporate Reception–Corporations can meet with students from organizations such as the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE), Out in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (oSTEM), American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES), and more. The event is scheduled for 6 to 7:45 p.m. at the Hamar House Tuesday night.

* Railroad Information Night, Tuesday, 7 to 9 p.m., DHH Ballroom–The Railroad Engineering and Activity Club and Tech’s Rail Transportation Program bring together students and railroad industry representatives.

“Also, on Monday night, there will be more than forty company information sessions,” Turnquist adds. “And these companies are looking for people. They are looking to hire.”

Published in Tech Today by Dennis Walikainen, senior editor


A Night at the Museum Features Geology PhD Student

The Carnegie Museum, in downtown Houghton, will host its third annual “Night at the Museum” fundraiser this Saturday, Sept. 21, from 4 to 8 p.m.  Tickets are $25 each and include a guided Red Jacket Trolley Tour, gourmet refreshments, music performed by local Suzuki students, and a silent auction.

This year’s guided Red Jacket Trolley tour will be of the ruins of Houghton’s Isle Royale Mine. Led by Erika Vye, geology PhD student and Wil Shapton of the Red Jacket Trolley company, the tour reflects our current exhibit theme “Gone But Not Forgotten: Preserving Memories of the Copper Country.”  The tour will illuminate how mining influenced our city’s landscape and how the remnants of the mining days live on amongst us.

Tickets are available at the museum (open Tuesday through Friday, noon to 5 p.m., and Saturday noon to 4 p.m.) Trolley seating is limited so be sure to choose your tour time, (4, 5, or 6 p.m.) when purchasing your ticket. Tickets sold at the door are not guaranteed a trolley tour.  All proceeds from the event will support building restoration and improvements, website development, exhibits and programs.

For more information, email history@cityofhoughton.com or call 482-7140.

Published in Tech Today


Women Launch a Publication About Gender Issues

Two humanities students at Michigan Tech have launched a newspaper called Beyond the Glass Ceiling. They hope it will become an outlet for writers who want to explore gender issues and gender inequality on campus.

“We had a lot of people interested, but most of them wanted to write anonymously. They thought it was too much of a risk.”

Megan Walsh, one of the student editors of Beyond the Glass Ceiling, talks about attempts to establish a base of writers last year as the publication was being launched. If you wonder why we need a feminist publication on campus, for Walsh, the request for anonymity answers it.

“That alone tells me we need to do this.”

Beyond the Glass Ceiling is the successor to the former TechnoBabe Times, a publication largely housed in the humanities department a decade ago. Graduate student Katie Snyder wanted to revive the tradition, with encouragement from faculty, leading to the new publication.

For the full story about the new publication, see online

Published in Tech Today by Kevin Hodur, creative writer