Archives—April 2011

Spring 2011 Commencement

As the spring 2011 semester is wrapping up and with final exams underway, several students are looking forward to summer break.  Michigan Tech students have several exciting things to look forward to, whether it is heading back home for the summer, doing an internship, staying in Houghton taking summer classes, or graduating and beginning a full time job.  The only thing between Michigan Tech students and their exciting plans for summer break is this week of final exams!

Commencement Information

President Glenn Mroz speaking at the 2010 Midyear Commencement Ceremony.

For graduating seniors, this week is going to be an especially busy one as they finish up finals, prepare for commencement, and begin the process of moving to the location of their full time job or graduate program.  This year’s spring commencement will take place Saturday, April 30 at 10:30 a.m. in the Student Development Complex Ice Arena.  Graduating students may receive up to four commencement tickets by presenting their photo ID at the Tech Express Office in the Campus Bookstore from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday, April 18 to Thursday, April 28.  The seating is open for the audience but attendees will need a ticket to enter the Ice Arena.  On Friday, April 29, extra or unclaimed tickets will be distributed from the Student Development Box Office on a first-come, first-served basis.  Graduating students are asked to attend a commencement rehearsal in the Student Development Complex Ice Arena.  The rehearsal is expected to last an hour.  On Saturday, April 30, graduating students are expected to arrive to the Student Development Complex Ice Arena no later than 9:45 a.m. For information regarding seating arrangements at commencement, take a look at the undergraduate degree candidates.  This link has the names of students who will be walking at the spring 2011 commencement as well as which row and seat they will be in.  Lastly, for those of you who would like to have a great photo of your student receiving their degree, there is a professional photographer who will take a photo of each graduating student as he or she is congratulated on stage.  For more information on how you and your student can get the proofs and ordering information go the Graduation Photos link.

The commencement speaker for the 2011 spring commencement will be Mr. Norman R. Augustine.  Mr. Augustine is an alumni of Princeton University who “has been a leader of industry, a devoted servant of government and society, and a visionary”.  Mr. Augustine was CEO and chairman of Martin Marietta Corporation and Lockheed Martin Corporation.  Mr Augustine also served as the undersecretary of the Army and he has received the Distinguished Service Medal five times from the Department of Defense.  From what I have read about Mr. Augustine, he seems to be quite an inspirational individual so I am excited to hear what he shares with the graduating students and their loved ones at commencement.

Graduate Reception

Blizzard T. Husky, dressed in a cap and gown, made an appearance at the 2010 Midyear Graduate Reception. Photo Creidt: Michigan Tech

In addition to commencement there will also be two receptions for graduating students to attend with their families.  On Friday, April 29, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. the President’s Reception for Graduates, hosted by President and Mrs. Glenn Mroz, will take place.  The reception will be held in the Memorial Union Ballroom and business casual attire is requested.  In addition to the President’s Reception, on Friday evening, several academic departments are holding additional receptions for students graduating from the department.  Also, taking place after the commencement ceremony will be the Graduate Reception hosted by the Michigan Tech Alumni Association.  The Graduate Reception will take place directly after commencement in the Student Development Complex Multi-Purpose Room.  This is a great place for new Michigan Tech alumni to network and learn about alumni benefits and services.  There will also be backgrounds for photo opportunities at the Graduate Reception so it is a great time to gather friends and family to take some pictures!  Lastly, after the graduation ceremony Dining Services will be offering a commencement brunch from 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Memorial Union Isle Royale Ballroom for graduates and their family and friends.  Tickets for the brunch are $18.95 per person and can be purchased at the door or at the Student Development Box Office, the Rozsa Center Box Office, or at Tech Express in the Memorial Union Building.

I wish all students the best of luck on their final exams and safe travels as they leave for summer break.  Parents, for those of you with graduating seniors, I hope you have a wonderful time at commencement!  Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have. Don’t forget to check back in two weeks for the next article in which I will be writing about summer classes.

Escape for Summer Break

The Week in Review

Michigan Tech students playing a game of Oozeball last Friday. Photo Credit: Michigan Tech

This last Thursday, April 14 Michigan Tech hosted the 10th annual Undergraduate Research Expo in the Memorial Union Building.  At the Undergraduate Expo, students had the opportunity to showcase and share their hard work and innovative ideas with fellow students, faculty, and staff.  This year’s expo included over 100 projects completed by student teams from Michigan Tech’s Enterprise, Senior Design, and Undergraduate Research Programs.  This year over 400 teams participated in the expo, including 14 High School Enterprise teams.

On Friday, April 15 Michigan Tech’s annual Spring Fling took place. Although it was chilly and windy outside Michigan Tech students still participated in the many outdoor events that were a part of the 80’s themed event. Believe it or not, not even the wind, chilly temperatures, or the clouds could keep Michigan Tech students away from the Oozeball Courts, the Full Throttle Motorcycle Show, or the free concert that was taking place!  On Saturday, April 16 students who signed up to participate in the Outdoor Adventure Program‘s Great Northern Adventure Race had a true northern adventure as they braved the cold temperatures, rain, sleet, and snow to win the race with their team.

Residence Hall Checkout Procedures

With less than one week of regular classes and then final exams, Michigan Tech students are ready for a much needed summer break.  Two weeks ago, students residing in the Residence Halls received the “You Deserve a Break” newsletter in their mailbox and via email. The newsletter contains all the necessary information regarding important checkout procedures.  Before students can leave for summer break they will need to make sure they return all the furniture in their room to it’s original setup.  Students will also need to vacuum and clean out their dresser and desk drawers.  48 hours prior to checking out students must make a checkout appointment with their Resident Assistant.   The Resident Assistant will verify that the student’s furniture is back to the original setup, that the room is clean, and that there are no damages to the room.  The Resident Assistant will provide students with a signed yellow checkout form after checking students rooms and students will take that form to their Residence Hall Reception Desk along with their key when they are ready to leave campus.  Following this checkout process is very important.  Improper checkout results in a $25 fee and students who do not turn in their key prior to leaving campus will receive a $50 fee.  Students who are not graduating this spring must vacate their room and properly checkout prior to 12 p.m. on Saturday, April 30.  Students who are graduating must vacate their room and properly checkout prior to 12 p.m. on Sunday, May 1.  The entrances to all residence halls will be locked at 5 p.m. on Sunday, May 1 and student’s ID cards will not permit them entry into the buildings.  Students with extenuating circumstances may request a late departure by filling out the Early Arrival Late Departure Form at under the online forms link.  A fee will be assessed to students registering for late departure.

Students checking out of the residence halls are to have their bed lofted with their desk and dresser underneath.

Mail:  Mail received after Saturday, April 30 will be forwarded to the home address students have on file with the University until June 4.  If a student will have a forwarding address different from their home address they will need to complete the top portion of their yellow checkout form before turning it into their Residence Hall Reception Desk.  It is also a good idea for students to verify that their home address is correct on Banweb by going to the Personal Information tab, and clicking on the View Addresses link.  Mail will only be forwarded until June 4 so it is extremely important for students to notify senders of their change of address as soon as possible.  All mail received after June 4 will be returned to sender.

Reminders for Students:  On Friday, April 29 the Wadsworth and McNair Dining Halls will close after lunch and the DHH Dining Hall will close after dinner.  The Campus Café in Wadsworth Hall will close on Friday, April 29 at 1 a.m.  Students who utilized the bike storage organized by the Residence Hall Councils will need to make arrangements to retrieve their bike if they have not already.  In addition, students must take their bikes home with them for the summer.  Any bikes left on the outside bike racks on Sunday, May 1 will be removed by Public Safety.  There is limited storage available for students who will be returning to the residence halls next year.  Students may keep a maximum of one box or plastic bin in storage.  Please note there is not room in storage for large furniture items such as futons or chairs.  Students who place a box in storage will not be able to access their belongings until the fall.  Residents who are not returning to live in the residence halls may not keep a box in storage.  Lastly, students who owe House Damage Fines or Equipment Checkout Fines must pay their fines to their Residence Hall Reception Desk by Saturday, April 30.

Final Exams:  Final exams will take place the week of Monday, April 25.  Starting Saturday, April 23 at midnight, 22 hour quiet hours will go into effect in the residence halls.  This means that students in the Residence Halls must remain quiet and be respectful to those who are studying in the Residence Halls 22 hours a day until Friday, April 29 at noon.  The consideration hours in which students can resume their normal daytime volume level are 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 6 p.m daily.  As a treat for students living in the residence halls each of the dining halls will have an ice cream social on Sunday, April 24 at 9 p.m.

For further information regarding Residence Hall checkout procedures please see the “You Deserve a Break” newsletter.  I wish your student the best of luck on final exams.  Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have. Don’t forget to check back for next week’s article in which I will be writing about the upcoming spring commencement.

Spring Into Fun Events

As the semester is coming to an end in less than three short weeks, Michigan Tech students have a busy and fun-filled weekend ahead of them.

Undergraduate Research Expo

Students at the Undergraduate Research Expo presenting their posters to members of the faculty, community, and industry. Photo Credit: Michigan Tech

To kick off this weekends fun events, this Thursday, April 14 the 10th annual Undergraduate Research Expo will take place in the Memorial Union Building Ballrooms from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  The Undergraduate Research Expo is a showcase of the research, Enterprise and Senior Design projects that students have been working on over the past year or more.  The projects that are on display at the Undergraduate Research Expo are supported by over 150 different industry and community sponsors!  The event provides students with the opportunity to highlight their research and share the results with representatives from industry, community members, students, faculty, and staff.  A panel of judges composed of University faculty and corporate representatives will review the research projects and awards will be offered to the outstanding projects.  If your student is not already planning on attending the Undergraduate Research Expo, I strongly encourage them to stop by and take a look around at some of the innovative projects.  Chances are your student will be participating in undergraduate research, an Enterprise, or a Senior Design project at some point during their time at Michigan Tech.  For more information on the Undergraduate Research Expo check out the 2011 Undergraduate Expo website.  For those of you who have students presenting at the Undergraduate Research Expo, I wish them the best of luck!

Spring Fling

As the good-times of the weekend continue, Spring Fling will take place on Friday, April 15 from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. across campus.  Spring Fling is Michigan Tech’s way of celebrating the arrival of spring, giving students the opportunity to take a break from the stress of upcoming final exams by participating in fun outdoor activities.  This year’s Spring Fling is centered around an 80’s theme and the student organizations that will have tables set up around campus are encouraged to follow the theme through their games, giveaways, and food choices.  As the center piece for the 80’s theme, the Memorial Union Building Board is sponsoring classic 80’s arcade games.

Spring Fling Special Events

The 2010 Women’s Division Oozeball Champions. Photo Credit: MTSF

Although Spring Fling is listed as going from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. there are in fact several events going on all day and all weekend.  On Friday, April 15 and Saturday, April 16, the Michigan Tech Student Foundation will be hosting a mud volleyball tournament (fondly referred to by Michigan Tech students as Oozeball) in Lot 15E.  Two years ago Oozeball was held on the Campus Green, but due to the addition of the pedestrian walkways through US-41 that took place two summers ago, the event is now being held in an empty parking lot next to Wadsworth Hall.  The Michigan Tech Student Foundation actually had a Senior Design Team develop portable Oozeball courts last year so the parking lot could be cleared out and mud free at the end of the tournament. To participate in Oozeball students sign up with a team and play at scheduled games throughout the weekend.

Also taking place as a part of Spring Fling is a Full Throttle Motorcycle Show.  The motorcycle stunt show will take place in Lot 27 with free shows running 15-20 minutes long. Shows will begin at 12 p.m., 2 p.m., and 4 p.m.  The groups performing on campus include Sick Air FMX, featuring freestyle motocross tricks, and the Smage Brothers, featuring trials riding.

On Saturday, April 16 students have the opportunity to participate in the Outdoor Adventure Program‘s Great Northern Adventure Race.  This is the first time the race is taking place and it is sure to be a lot of fun!  The race begins at 11 a.m. and will start from the Waxing Shed at the Michigan Tech Trails.  The race will take approximately three to five hours to complete and will consist of orienteering, mountain biking, running, and mystery challenge events.  The race will take place across the Houghton area.  Teams of two or four people can participate in the race.  Registration for the race was due last Friday but if you’re interested in the race I’m sure it would be fun to go up to the Michigan Tech Trails to watch the race begin or to watch the Michigan Tech Trail Cams for activity.


As a reminder, classes are still in session Friday, April 15 and students are strongly encouraged to attend all their classes that day. Typically students have breaks throughout the day where they can enjoy the festivities of Spring Fling. Lastly, Spring Fling is a great place for students to determine which Student Organizations they may want to get involved in next academic year. Spring Fling is similar to Michigan Tech’s Keweenaw Day (an event held at McLain State Park in the fall), in the sense that several student organizations will have tables set up around campus with activities and giveaways. This provides the perfect opportunity for students to ask questions and learn more about the student organizations that they can participate in.

Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have. Don’t forget to check back for next week’s article in which I will be writing about how students can prepare for the end of the semester.

Take a Stand at Standathon

Standathon student organization members with Blizzard T. Husky. Photo Credit: Beth Lunde

The Michigan Tech Standathon is an annual 12 hour standing marathon designed to raise money for Bay Cliff Health Camp.  Bay Cliff is a year-round not-for-profit therapy and wellness center for children and adults with disabilities.  Bay Cliff offers several camps that focus on increasing independence and recreational activities for those with disabilities.  This year’s Standathon took place on Friday, April 1 to Saturday, April 2 from 7  p.m. to 7 a.m. in the Student Development Complex.  Students who participated in Standathon were able to arrive to or leave the event as they wished. Entrance to Standathon was $10 at the door.  Students who paid a $15 entrance fee got a free t-shirt and those who paid a $20 entrance fee got a free t-shirt and were put in the running for the grand prize, an Xbox Kinect.  Some students also collected pledge donations for the event.  Standathon student organization members have calculated that this year’s donations totaled close to $6,100!


In years past, Standathon was held in the Memorial Union Building or in the Wadsworth Dining Hall.  Over the years the event has grown in number of activities offered, variety of activities offered, and number of students participating.  Last year Standathon took place in the Student Development Complex to provide more space for the activities and to make use of the facilities so that more diverse activities could be offered, such as broomball and swimming.  The new location of Standathon was a hit last year and the Student Development Complex was chosen again as the venue for this year’s event.  This year there was over 30 activities for students to participate in.

Live band performance at Standathon 2011. Photo Credit: Adam Zawisza

With some of the bizarre activities and great prizes that were available to this year’s participants, students were more than excited to stay on their feet!  Students who  participated in Standathon have found that the event provides a great opportunity to spend time with friends, meet new people, and have a blast, all while raising money for a local charity!  Some of the fun activities that participants could take part in included free salsa dancing lessons, three live band performances and a talent show.  The Student Development Complex pool was open for swimming, water polo, and a kayak clinic hosted by the Outdoor Adventure Program.  The John MacInnes Ice Arena was open for broomball along with the climbing wall, rifle range, and the raquetball and walleyball courts.

Some of the other crazy and fun activities included a 65 ft. inflatable obstacle course, sumo wrestling, black light mini golf, food eating contests, laser tag, video game competitions, and life-sized board games.  In addition to all the fun activities, there were also several prizes and giveaways throughout the night.   Several smaller prizes raffled off by the hour and this year’s grand prize was a Xbox Kinect!  Lastly, to top it off, there was lots of great food and snacks at Standathon. Students who stood all night got to enjoy a complimentary pancake breakfast on Saturday, April 2 at 6 a.m.

Standathon Student Organization

Standathon student organization members at Camp Bay Cliff. Photo Credit: Standathon

Standathon is a Michigan Tech student organization that was established to provide students with the opportunity to participate in a once a year large scale community service event.  The student members of the Standathon organization spend the year planning for the 12 hour event.  The students coordinate everything from the t-shirt designs, to advertisement, to donations of prizes and food.  Members of Standathon have the opportunity to work collaboratively with other students, businesses, and community members to raise money for Bay Cliff Health Camp.  Standathon is certainly an impressive student run event!  Thank you to all the volunteers and organization members who made the 5th annual Standathon a success!

Please feel free to email me with any questions, comments, or suggestions you may have. Don’t forget to check back for next week’s article in which I will be writing about Michigan Tech’s annual Spring Fling and the Undergraduate Research Expo.