Tag: University

Michigan Tech’s Peace Corps Program Ranked Number 1 in the Nation

Michigan Tech ranks as the top Peace Corps Master’s International (PCMI) university nationwide for the eighth consecutive year. With 35 PCMI graduate students currently serving as Peace Corps Volunteers, Michigan Tech has earned the top spot in the 2013 rankings of PCMI and Paul D. Coverdell Fellows graduate schools. Tulane University placed second.

The PCMI program enables graduate students to incorporate Peace Corps service for credit as part of their master’s degree curriculum. The Coverdell Fellows program provides returned Peace Corps volunteers with scholarships, internships in underserved American communities and stipends to help them earn an advanced degree after they complete their Peace Corps service.

For the whole story, see http://www.mtu.edu/news/stories/2013/may/story88794.html

Also: http://midwestpcvs.wordpress.com/2013/05/07/michigan-technological-university-remains-top-peace-corps-masters-international-graduate-school-nationwide/

Published in Tech Today by Jenn Donovan, public relations director


19th Annual Student Leadership Awards Announcements

Congratulations to the following students, student organizations, and advisors for inspiring community, scholarship, possibilities, accountability and tenacity within Michigan Tech as well as our community.

Here are your 2013 Student Leadership Award recipients:

Melanie Hoffman, President’s Award for Leadership
Michael Adler, Provost Award for Scholarship
Claire Meneguzzo, Vice President’s Award for Service
Kevin Cassell, Exceptional Leadership in Student Governance
Yu Summer Gu, Exceptional Enthusiasm as a Student Leader
Jason Cattelino, Student Employee of the Year
Hannah Altscheffel, Rising Star of the Year
Caleb Vogt, Undergraduate Research Expo, Exceptional Program of the Year
Society of Women Engineers, Most Improved Student Organization
Leo Ureel II, Breaking Digital Barriers, Exceptional Community Service Project
Memorial Union Board, Student Organization of the Year
Emanuel Marcos R. Castro Oliveira, Student Organization Advisor of the Year

Published in Tech Today


New Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (AIA) Patent Law Affecting Research Commercialization

The Leahy-Smith America Invents Act ( AIA), also known as the Patent Reform Act of 2011, went into effect on March 16, bringing with it significant changes to the US Patent system.  The most important change from the AIA law moves the United States to a first-to-file system from the previous first-to-invent system.  Whereas the old system provided inventors with a mechanism to prove they were the first to invent and secure patent protection, the new system is essentially a race to the patent office.  If two independent researchers came up with the same invention at the same time, the first one to file a patent application will be awarded the patent.  In the past you could rely on dated lab notebooks and notes to prove you were the first one to invent.

The old system also provided a one-year grace period to file a US patent from the time the invention was publicly disclosed. Until the new patent laws are clarified through future court case rulings, researchers should consider any public disclosure a patent-barring event.

The increasingly stringent requirements for patents to include a complete and enabling written description, compounded with the effective loss of the one year grace period, makes it more important than ever to prepare and submit invention disclosure documents to the Office of Innovation and Industry Engagement well in advance of any planned public disclosures.  Early submission of invention disclosure documents will assist in the timely development of strategies related to technology validation and related patent-filing activities before conference presentations, manuscript publications, thesis/dissertation defenses, or other events.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Michigan Tech’s Innovation and Industry Engagement Office at 487-2228.

Published in Tech Today


Puff the Magic Sledder: PhD Student Races Snowmobiles Professionally

By Dennis Walikainen

Michigan Technological University PhD candidate Jennifer Fuller grew up dabbling in snowmobiling in her native Saginaw, where they have just a few inches of snowfall per year. So when she got to Houghton and Michigan Tech, she was hooked.

“I started with a local hill climb, found the Sledheads student organization and eventually moved on to the Midwest pro circuit,” she says.

Whether in a hill climb or endurance run (100—and sometimes 500—miles), her Polaris sled can be found battling other women on the USXC Cross Country Snowmobile Circuit.

“The endurance races are true to the original terrain that snowmobiles were designed for,” she says. “We cross ditches, lakes, roadsides, woods, you name it. They are typically 10-20 mile laps that we run numerous times with fuel stops.”

In a separate Pro Women’s Class, she’s finished as high as second in the endurance runs. She is sponsored by Polaris.

“They spotted me at the World Championships in Jackson Hole, Wyoming,” she says. “The team owner, Gabe Bunke, and his family were there and invited me to race for Bunke Racing.”

“Jen has been fun to work with the last two years,” Gabe Bunke says. “She’s got a real good attitude and somehow manages to get though situations that may be over her head. And she never gives up. We call her ‘Puff,’ from the old Powder Puff female racing days.”

Bunke Racing fixes, prepares and moves her Polaris IQR 600CC sled to the eight different sites on the Midwest circuit. That’s a big bonus for a PhD candidate.

“Depending on my workload, I can be driving off to a location at the last minute,” Fuller says. “Sometimes, I’m getting in at 2 a.m. for a 9 a.m. start. It’s huge that the sled is there ready for me.”

They also keep the sled so Fuller isn’t tempted to bring it back to Houghton, where she has been known to break it.

“It’s better that I focus on school,” she says.

Polaris is one of the four big sponsors in snowmobile racing, with Ski-Doo, Yamaha and Arctic Cat.

It was in the hometown of Arctic Cat, Thief River Falls, Minn., that Fuller’s 500-mile race took place this February. She made it through 430 miles of the three-day race before crashing and heading to the hospital with a concussion. She also missed Winter Carnival at Tech.

The differences between the endurance events and hill climbs are many, including the time they take: one minute versus two hours (for the 100-mile version).

“And that’s with no lunch breaks or bathroom breaks,” Fuller adds.

And what does her family think about all this?

“They think I’m crazy, but they always support my decisions” she says.

Whether or not she sticks with snowmobile racing depends on where the PhD leads, she explains. “I’d like to keep racing, but I just don’t know where my career will take me.”

But Bunke says, “I know, when she’s trying to figure out the next step in her life, she’s always looking at staying connected with Bunke Racing and being able to snowmobile. Jen is a top notch gal, and we love having her at the races. So do the young female fans. She’s big on Facebook, too.”

She’s already had to turn down offers to work for Polaris, in both snowmobile design and the purchasing department.

“They hire engineers, even civil engineers, for everything, they said.”

Instead, she’s studying civil and environmental engineering on an NSF fellowship and charting a much different course in life.

“I actually have some entrepreneurship goals that I will be pursuing,” Fuller says. “But I love teaching and research, so if I could combine them all, that is my ideal career.

Fuller’s race year is wrapping up March 9-10 in Warroad, Minn. Then she gets to enjoy Spring Break.


Archaeology for Everybody: Summer School at the Cliff Mine

Ever had an Indiana Jones fantasy? Now is your chance to indulge it.  During the first summer session, Tech students and those from other colleges and universities, high school students and community seniors are all being invited to apply for the Cliff Mine Project’s fourth field research season.  Participants will help the University’s industrial archaeologists document the historic copper mine found along the 200-foot greenstone bluff that runs up the spine of the Keweenaw Peninsula.

The “Cliff Vein” produced more than 38 million pounds of refined copper over a 40 year period, paying dividends to its investors totaling $2.5 million.  People working in the mine and living in the town of Clifton transformed the social and technological practices of mining, starting America’s first successful industrial mining boom.

The field research project runs from May 13 through June 28, led by Associate Professors Timothy Scarlett and Samuel Sweitz (Social Sciences), working closely with project archaeologists Sean Gohman and Lee Presley.

“Learning archaeological fieldwork is an immersive experience where teamwork is essential,” Scarlett said.  “It takes weeks of work before a person can begin assembling the clues from each discovery into meaningful pictures of the past. Students should expect the work to be exacting, often slow and physically challenging.”  Those accepted into the course will be expected to work 8-hour days, 5 days a week throughout the 6-week course.

The course can be taken for undergraduate or graduate credit, at the regular undergraduate or graduate cost per credit hour.  It can be audited as a lifelong learning experience at no fee for seniors.

Information about class registration and costs can be found at registration/costs.

Explore the Cliff Mine research blog, which archives information from several years of fieldwork and research, at blog.

Published in Tech Today by Jenn Donovan, public relations director

Chinese Night Celebration Friday

The Chinese Students and Scholars Association will host its gala Chinese Night on Friday, Feb. 15, celebrating with a feast and a traditional performance.

The New Year’s Eve dinner is set for 5-7 p.m. in the Memorial Union Commons. Seven delectable Chinese dishes will be served, including beef tomato, mushroom chicken and potato with ribs.

“Chinese Night 2013: Year of the Snake” begins at 7:30 p.m. in the Rozsa Center. The performance marks the Chinese Spring Festival, their most important holiday. Like Christmas in the West, it is a time of celebration when all family members get together.

Performers hail from many countries, including India, Thailand, Germany and, of course, China.

Because this is the year of the snake, the show includes the traditional Chinese opera “The Legend of the Snake.” It is one of four famous Chinese folk legends and tells the circuitous and graceful love story of a snake spirit, Lady White, and a mortal, Xu Xian.

Also on the program is “Thousand-Hand Guanyin,” a well-known dance of China. Guanyin means “Observing the Sounds (or Cries) of the World.” The Buddhist goddess of compassion, Guanyin has thousands of faces and hands. In this dance, 12 dancers will form her likeness on a lotus-shaped stage.

International students will present a skit, “MTU Friends,” about an international friendship at Tech. In addition, the program includes songs and traditional dances.

“We are sincerely looking forward to sharing this wonderful night with you and your family,” said members of the Chinese Students and Scholars Association.

Tickets (including dinner and show) are $15 for the public, $12 for students, $6 for children under 13 and free for CSSA members. Tickets may be purchased athttp://rozsa.tickets.mtu.edu or at the Ticketing Operations in the SDC.

Sponsors of Chinese Night include the Undergraduate Student Government, Graduate Student Government, the Rozsa Center, Memorial Union Dining Services, I-club, Ming’s Asian Bistro, Super 8 Hotel, Cyberia Café, 5th & Elm Coffee House and the Blue Iris.

Published in Tech Today


Flu Shots Available

Flu shots are still available at Portage Health in all three locations (SDC, Fast Care, Main Office in Hancock).

All shots are $25 and insurance is accepted. Please call Portage Health at 483-1000 or go to the website for more information on locations and appointments. Supplies are very limited.

Look for flu clinics fall semester during October and November on campus brought to you by Portage Health.

Published in TechToday


Safe Place Training in Spring 2013

With the increased enrollment of students who openly identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning (GLBTQ), the Michigan Tech Safe Place Program is designed to be a comprehensive and in-depth resource to better prepare faculty, staff, and graduate assistants to address the needs of these students. The training program addresses a wide range of terms that GLBTQ students use to define their identities, issues that GLBTQ students often deal with during the coming out process, concerns that GLBTQ students face both in and out of the classroom, ways that faculty, staff, and graduate assistants can create inclusive classroom and office environments, where faculty, staff, and graduate assistants can refer students who need to report harassment, and the on- and off-campus resources available to students. All graduate students are invited to participate in the program. The spring 2013 training times and the online registration form are available at http://safeplace.mtu.edu/register.php.


December 2012 EndNote Workshops

The J. Robert Van Pelt and John and Ruanne Opie Library is offering another round of its EndNote workshops.

EndNote is a citation management software that helps you easily create and manage bibliographic information and incorporate references into your writing.  In other words, EndNote streamlines the research and reporting process.

Seating for these workshops is limited and registration is required. To register please visit: EndNote LibGuide

EndNote Basic I: Creating and Organizing an EndNote Library on December 19th @ 11:00 AM
The Van Pelt and Opie Library is offering a 1 hour introductory workshop on creating and managing references using the citation management software, EndNote.  EndNote allows you to easily collect, organize and use your research references. No prior knowledge of EndNote is necessary

In this workshop participants will learn how to:

  • Build an EndNote collection of citations (i.e. EndNote library)
  • How to manage an EndNote library

EndNote Basic II: Cite While You Write (CWYW) on December 19th @ 12:15 PM

The Van Pelt and Opie Library is offering an 1 hour EndNote Workshop on how to incorporate your EndNote Library citations into a written document (MS Word).  Attendance of EndNote Basic I, or prior knowledge of building and managing an EndNote library, is highly recommended.

In this workshop participants will learn how to:

  • Incorporate EndNote Library references into a written document (MS Word)
  • Import specialized output styles

EndNote Special Topics: Managing Journal Terms List on December 19th @ 1:30 PM

Some publication submission requirements specify abbreviations for journal titles in citations while others prefer full journal titles. The EndNote Journal Terms List feature can simplify this process for you by managing both the journal title abbreviations and full titles. The Van Pelt and Opie Library is offering a 45 minute EndNote Workshop on how to manage Journal Terms List.  Attendance of EndNote Basic I & II workshops, or prior knowledge of creating an EndNote Library and using CWYW, is highly recommended.

In this workshop participants will learn how to:

  • How to create a Journal Terms List
  • How to add/modify Journal Abbreviations
  • How to auto update a Journal Terms List

Seating for these workshops is limited and registration is required. To register please visit: EndNote LibGuide

Note: Our sessions use EndNote X5 on PCs. Laptop users are encouraged to update their versions of EndNote prior to the session. See the library’s EndNote Download page.


Tour Silicon Valley During Spring Break 2013

Do you know any students looking for a great experience?  On Thursday, Dec. 6, at 5 p.m., they can interview for the chance to join a special Spring Break trip. The Silicon Valley Experience 2013 will take 15 lucky students to visit California’s technology and innovation hub from March 10 to 15.

To win a spot at the significantly reduced cost of $300, all they have to do is answer one question in 90 seconds: “Why would I like to work and live in Silicon Valley?”  Their answer will be given to the trip coordinators, and final trip participants will be selected and notified before the end of the semester.

This year, the participants will tour of some of the most innovative companies on the west coast. Last year, the group visited Google, Brocade, Cisco, Kyocera, Plug and Play, and other companies.

This event is open to both undergrad and graduate students of all majors. They should email Professor Russ Louks (SBE) at rwlouks@mtu.edu with your name, major and year by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 5, to participate. A schedule will be sent out early on Dec. 6 with the time you will be interviewed in AOB 101.

For more information, see Silicon Valley, or contact Louks at rwlouks@mtu.edu or Assistant Professor Andre Laplume (SBE) at aolaplum@mtu.edu .

Printed in TechToday