Modern Languages Film Series begins Thursday, 1/27

The 2022 Modern Languages Film Series kicks off Thursday, January 27th, with the German film, I’m Your Man (Ich Bin Dein Mensch, Shrader, 2021). Scientist Alma (Maren Eggert) has reluctantly agreed to live for three weeks with humanoid robot Tom (Dan Stevens), who has been created solely to make her happy. This contemplative comedy about love, longing, and what makes us human will screen at 7:00 PM in Fisher 135.

Other films presented in the series include Unbalanced (Desequilibrados, Balanda, 2021), screening February 24th, and Portrait of a Lady on Fire (Portrait de le Jeune Fille en Feu, Sciamma, 2019), screening March 24th. All films in the series will screen in Fisher 135 and are free and open to the public.

This film series is sponsored by the Modern Languages program in the Department of Humanities.


Social Media Intern, Department of Humanities

Tucker in archives with Hugh

I served as a Social Media Intern in charge of the Instagram/Facebook accounts and creating a
department Discord Server for the Department of Humanities. My internship allowed me to work within the department to reach out to the community, current students, and prospective students. This semester, I worked on professional, casual communication across digital platforms. Using the Discord server I helped set up, I’ve networked with students in my department I hadn’t met yet. The COVID pandemic stressed the importance of these digital spaces. It also allows me to reach out to prospective students within an environment familiar to them.

Creating the Humanities Instagram/Facebook posts involved the new mascot HUgh Manatee,
who promoted humanities-related, on-campus resources. Since I started creating content, I’ve
seen 72 accounts follow the Humanities Instagram account. I also interacted with users on the
social media accounts, from sharing stories from the Graduate Student Government, to
answering questions posed in the comment sections.

Part of my internship included graphic design for content creation. Some design elements are intuitive, while others are ones I learned through experience. For example, I learned how using
as few fonts as possible helps viewers concentrate on information better. Additionally, layout can make a difference as to what information people pick up. Hearing about ideal placing, colors,  formatting, etc. from my mentor and seeing the results helped me understand how each element connects to convey a message.

— Tucker Nielsen, English


Technical Writing Intern, Center for Technology and Training

Computer screens with text documents open

What does a typical day look like for an intern writer in the Center for Technology & Training (CTT)? If this is something you wonder about at all, you are in luck because I can tell you all about it. On any given day you will most likely be writing or editing an article project, probably not a huge surprise. Where it starts to get more interesting is when I can organize interviews with professionals relevant to the field I am writing about. I get to ask them questions for my article, and additionally, I consult with subject matter experts (SME) to help fix any issues or inconsistencies with the technical content in my article. Throughout the course of this semester, I have had the opportunity to conduct extensive research on my article topic which is about HFST which stands for high friction surface treatment. This is a technology used for increasing the safety of a road by making it much harder for a vehicle to slip off the road, and most of the time this happens it would be around a sharp turn or because of wet weather conditions. This is just one topic of something an intern writer here in the CTT can expect to work on, and there are many more articles always being written. If you are someone who likes to write as well as talk with experts and learn from them, then working with the CTT is something fit for you.

— Troy Zehnder, STC


Social Media Intern, Health and Well-being

Emily Bishop and two friends

During my first year at Michigan Tech, I felt out of touch with the community due to the pandemic and online classes. I had a discussion with my advisor about future possibilities to engage with students as campus opened back up, and she suggested an internship at the Center for Student Mental Health and Well-being. Working as an intern for the Center for Student Mental Health and Well-Being has not only helped me connect with the student body, it also gave me the opportunity to make new friends while making a positive impact on campus. 

The undergraduate team at the center is split up into specific task groups based on people’s individual interests; mine dealt mostly with social media. During my time I have helped create and spread information on our social media pages including study tips, mental scheduling, safety tips, and many more topics. One post I made was for Halloween safety tips, which gained a lot of traction on our platform. The post was even shared by the Keweenaw Peninsula official instagram which reached their thousands of followers! I also wanted to help make sure our team worked well together by hosting a staff-bonding event where we decorated cookies to practice our own well-being. 

A bit outside of the realm of mental health, we were able to volunteer during homecoming week with the cardboard boat races. Hannah, Cat, and I each timed one of the lanes of boats; and since this was my first cardboard boat race, it made the experience super cool since we were right in the middle of the action.

— Emily Bishop, CCM


Humans of Michigan Tech: Tucker Nielsen

Tucker Nielsen posing in front of Legos

I’m an AFOL, part of the growing community of adult fans of LEGO®. I bought my first, a Star Wars set, when I was 6. I enjoyed how each brick clicked together and changed depending on how it was placed. One minute, a slope brick was a roof shingle. The next, it was the top of a space reptile.

The infinite capabilities for rebuilding and the universal appeal still draw me. As someone on the autistic spectrum, my interests change frequently, from space and castles to Harry Potter and Pirates of the Caribbean. But LEGO products cater to each of my changing interests and encourage me to build beyond the instructions. It’s a toy I’ve never grown out of because it grows with me.

My university experience has also been one that explores all the possibilities, and I’ve learned to hold on to my values and make time for hobbies and causes that matter to me. Initially drawn to Michigan Tech as a computer engineering major through my mechatronics courses at the Kent Career Technical Center in high school, I began realizing what my true interests were through editing and nature writing courses. I fully transitioned to an English major in summer 2020, with minors in writing, computer science and German. Since I faced the truth that I didn’t want to code for a living, I’ve found much more pleasure in schoolwork, connected more fully with my professors and peers, and become more active in my department. I work in the Michigan Tech Writing Center. In Room 107 of Walker Arts and Humanities, you’ll find our team of coaches helping clients with any kind of writing they bring — everything from resumes to cover letters. We even had a student bring in a Tinder bio (unfortunately, I wasn’t the coach who helped them!). Our goal is to help all students improve their writing as a communicative tool. For me, it’s great practice teaching what I enjoy. 

I was a Michigan Tech Orientation team leader in summer 2021 and am currently an ExSEL (Excelling the Student Experience of Learning) peer mentor. In both jobs, I work with incoming students to help them transition to college life. I use these opportunities to pass on lessons I’ve learned, such as utilizing a planner/calendar for all schoolwork, prioritizing your self-care needs and knowing when to ask for help. It’s also a chance to learn about new identities and cultures from the diverse body of students.

The organizations I’m involved in also allow me to work with people of different backgrounds across campus. I serve as vice president of Women’s Leadership Council, participating in  encouraging equality for everyone, especially for women and nonbinary individuals. I write and edit for our student newspaper, The Lode. And I serve as secretary of the Creative Writing Club, a group that encourages all writers to explore and develop their skills.  

I plan to work locally in content creation, including public relations and social media. I have my sights set on Michigan Tech, but I’m open to working for other companies in the area. I want to use social media to build up relationships, so businesses aren’t just selling products to customers. Many Keweenaw businesses are or should be incorporating community events, histories and culture into their brands. It goes beyond simply selling bikes, photos or food. In this field, I can see my creative potential fully realized.

If Michigan Tech has taught me anything about myself, it’s about being true to my passions. It’s about figuring out if you can push through the menial tasks in your field, so you can enjoy the fun parts and the skills that call to your strengths. It’s about finding a profession that’s interesting and worth growing in. I recommend embracing your interests, as long as they aren’t harming yourself or others. Life should include individual exploration and growth. Why are there infinite choices if we’re destined for only one path? These questions helped me find where I can grow from. Perhaps they’ll help you, too. 

– Tucker Nielsen ’22


THE RESCUE Added to 41 North Film Festival

Newly added to the 41 North Film Festival is The Rescue — a film by Academy Award–winning filmmakers Jimmy Chin and Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi (Free Solo, Meru) that tells the story of the daring 2018 rescue of 12 boys and their coach from a flooded cave in Thailand.

“The Rescue” shines a light on the high-risk world of cave diving and the courage and compassion of the international rescue team that united to save the boys. The film will screen at 4:30 p.m. on Sunday (Nov. 7) in the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts.

See the full lineup of films and events at 41northfilmfest.org. The festival is free and open to the public. Students will need to bring their HuskyCard. Tickets for everyone else can be reserved at tickets.mtu.edu or by calling 906-487-2073, and will also be available in the Rozsa lobby prior to each film.

Major sponsorship for the festival is provided by the Department of Humanities, the Department of Visual and Performing Arts, the College of Sciences and Arts, and the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts.


Heather Loughman

Heather Loughman, BA, STC ’09 and MS, RTC ’11 has been selected as the new CEO of Community Action Partnership of Lancaster and Saunders Counties. Loughman previously served as Director of Communications and Development for the non-profit agency focused on helping families and individuals living in poverty reach economic stability. Key program areas include early childhood education, homelessness prevention, financial and family well-being, and hunger relief and healthy food access.

“Community Action is an organization very dear to me, where I have had tremendous opportunity to learn and grow both personally and professionally,” said Loughman. “Learning and growth will be at the forefront of Community Action’s continued efforts to create opportunities for individuals to achieve economic stability, and to address both poverty’s conditions and causes.”


The 41 North Film Festival Returns

Wildlife Photographer Vincent Munier and writer Sylvain Tesson seek the elusive snow leopard in The Velvet Queen, screening Saturday, 11/6, at 7:30 p.m. as part of the 41 North Film Festival.

The 41 North Film Festival will be held November 4–7, 2021, featuring four days of award-winning independent film at the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts. Highlights from this year’s program include: Storm Lake (Risius/Levison, 2021), a story about a family-owned and operated small-town newspaper that recently won a Pulitzer Prize. The Storm Lake Times editor, Art Cullen, and filmmaker Beth Levison, will join for a virtual Q&A following the film. The film will screen on Friday, 11/5, at 7:30 p.m. On Saturday, 11/6, at 7:30 p.m. the festival will present The Velvet Queen (Amiguet, 2021), which follows acclaimed wildlife photographer Vincent Munier‘s Tibetan trek in search of the elusive snow leopard. On Sunday, the festival offers the family-friendly, Lily Topples the World, the story of young domino artist Lily Hevesh, whose incredible domino creations have earned her over three million Youtube followers.

Other films include Sundance documentary winner Summer of Soul, Writing with Fire (winner of 17 international awards), Academy-Award nominee The Mole Agent, and a host of other thought-provoking, entertaining, and inspiring films. As always, expect music in the lobby between films, as well as other special events and guests.

The festival is free and open to the public. MTU staff, faculty, and students from other schools can reserve a ticket (only one needed for entire festival) by visiting https://tickets.mtu.edu or calling the SDC Ticketing Office at 906-487-2073. MTU students should bring an ID to gain admittance. The festival will follow the Rozsa Center Covid-19 Policies. Please visit the festival website for the full program and additional information.


ACSHF Forum: Stefka Hristova, Humanities

The Department of Cognitive and Learning Sciences will host speaker Stefka Hristova (Associate Professor of Digital Media, Humanities) at the next Applied Cognitive Science and Human Factors forum. The presentation, “Emptied Faces: In Search For An Algorithmic Punctum”, will be from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. Monday (October 11) in Meese 109 and via Zoom.

This talk explores the ways in which human faces have become reconfigured in the context of algorithmic culture. More specifically, it details the decomposition of the face in the context of big data and machine learning algorithms and its two subsequent distinct rearticulations: one linked to predictive algorithms and the other linked to the generation of deep fake portraits.


Women of the Copper Country

University Archivist and RTC doctoral student Lindsay Hiltunen was an invited speaker as part of the Great Michigan Read (GMR) programming series at Dearborn Public Library on Oct. 7.

Hiltunen presented a talk on the Michigan Copper Miners’ Strike of 1913-14 and the Italian Hall Disaster as part of a programming series to promote this year’s GMR book, “The Women of the Copper Country.”

Hiltunen will be sharing her presentation at several public libraries across the state as part of the GMR.