Archives—September 2012

How to be a healthy student at Michigan Tech

Staying Healthy

Staying healthy is essential for a student. It allows us to keep our minds working at full capacity and to keep up with our often hectic social and academic lives.  Midterms, exams, homework, and papers are all constant worries and no student wants to add a case of the sniffles on top of it all.

So what can your student do to prevent this?

Hygiene: Send your student a friendly reminder of the importance of washing their hands and keeping the germs down so they don’t catch any bugs.

Photo Credit:

Get Adequate Sleep:

I believe that this is one of the most important ways to be a successful college student.  It seems that as soon as I begin to lose sleep, I always get sick. The average adult needs six to eight hours of sleep each night to function effectively.  College students need at least six to eight hours, but some research states that college student may need 10-12 hours each night to be at their best.  It is important that college students make sleep a priority and that they do not substitute a good night of sleep with caffeine or frequent naps.  Your student can add more hours of sleep into their schedule by carefully planning their schedule and setting concrete goals for homework completion.  Encourage your student to have a solid sleep schedule and to keep it consistent.

Eat Right: Whether your student lives in the residence halls or off campus, there are many opportunities to eat healthy, even if your student doesn’t realize it.  We all know how tempting those french fries, chips, or desserts can be while  walking through the dining hall or grocery store, but eating only these options can begin to take a toll on your body. College students are still growing and need to make sure that they are getting their daily fruits, vegetables, dairy, and water.  Michigan Tech’s Dining Services has several healthy options for students to choose from.  In the residence halls, there are great salad bars, and students can even take one piece of fruit out of the dining hall with them to snack on later.  Dining Services also has a number of cafes on campus, including Fusion and the Library Cafe.  Fusion, located in the Dow Building, has real fruit smoothies, salads, and wraps for students to purchase.  The Library Cafe, located in the Van Pelt Library, also has salads, wraps, and fruit drinks available for purchase.

Exercise: Staying active and exercising regularly is especially important for a college student’s health.  Exercising reduces stress and improves overall health.  College is probably one of the easiest times in a person’s life to make time for exercise.  Exercise in college can be very convenient, as there are many nearby facilities that your student can utilize.  Michigan Tech provides numerous ways for students to stay active.  With Experience Tech, Michigan Tech students can enjoy the Gates Tennis CenterMt. Ripley, the Portage Lake Golf Course, and much more.  The Student Development Complex also has a great fitness center for students to use that is free of charge.  There are also a variety of fun ways to stay active and get some exercise.  What could be more enjoyable than biking on the Tech Trails or renting a kayak from the Outdoor Adventure Program and paddling up the Portage Canal?  There are also several organized activities students can get involved in such as BroomballFrisbockey, or Intramural Sports.  Lastly, Michigan Tech offers several Physical Education courses that students can take for pass/fail credit.

Get Vaccinations: Students can stay healthy during flu season by getting a flu shot.  Every year Michigan Tech hosts a flu shot clinic for students.  The clinic is usually held in October or November, but the exact dates for this year’s flu shot clinic will be announced to students soon.

Take Care of Emotional and Mental Health: College is a time of transition that can often times be stressful for students.  It is important that students take time to relax and find activities that they enjoy.  Students may also find it helpful to stay connected with friends and family back home. However, it is important to understand that they may struggle to find the time to stay connected or to initiate contact.  Michigan Tech’s Counseling  Services provides students with several resources to help them succeed throughout their academic career at Michigan Tech. The counselors at Counseling Services can help students manage stress and any other issues that may be interfering with their coursework or personal lives.  For a complete list of services that Counseling  Services provides, see the Counseling Services page.

My Farewell

Parents, I am sad to say that this is my last article as the ParentNet Weekly Article Writer.  This is my last semester as a student here at Tech and I will be graduating in December.  I am currently working on finishing out my experience here at Michigan Tech as a Student Affairs Intern. In January I will begin graduate school, working toward my masters in Educational Leadership in Student Affairs. I am very excited for this next step in my life. However, it will be very hard to leave Michigan Tech and the community that I have come to call my home.  I am grateful for the opportunity that I have had to serve as your ParentNet Weekly Article Writer, and it is the conversations that I have had with you that led me to believe that I need to pursue a career working in higher education.  I want to thank you for letting me into your lives, for letting me share my Michigan Tech experiences with you, and for sharing your questions, concerns, triumphs, and successes with me.  It has been such a pleasure to write for you and I could not have asked for better readership!

Next week’s article will be coming from our new ParentNet Weekly Article Writer, Travis Gendron.  Travis is a personal friend of mine and I know that he will continue to keep you well-informed of campus events, community happenings, and issues that are important to you and your student.  Travis is involved in many aspects of campus life and I am excited for ParentNet Weekly to have the new and fresh perspective that Travis will bring to the articles that he writes.  I would like to wish you, your student, and Travis the best!

Check back for next week’s article, where Travis will introduce himself to you in his first ParentNet Weekly Article!

Fall Career Fair 2012

Michigan Tech has an outstanding Career Services Center located on campus! The Career Services Center’s goal is to provide development and placement assistance to undergraduate students, graduate students, and alumni. This office is an awesome resource for students! If your student is looking to get prepared for a job, co-op, or internship, then this is the place to go. At Career Services, students may practice mock interviews, work with a career counselor on their resume, gather information about companies looking to hire students, and develop a career plan. Be sure to tell your student to stop in and visit them in room 220 in the Administration Building.

Fall Career Fair 2012

In roughly two weeks, the Career Fair will once again take place at Michigan Tech! This is one of the most exciting times of the year for many students on campus. The Fall Career Fair will be on Tuesday, October 2 in the Student Development Complex. Currently, there are 267 companies registered to participate. To view information about the companies currently registered for the Fall Career Fair, check out this Registered Employers list.

Over the next few weeks, Career Services will offer an event series called ‘Resume Blitz.’  This is a great opportunity for students who are in the process of polishing their resumes to get them reviewed by knowledgeable staff members. September 24-28 Career Services will also host ‘Interview Skills Week.’ Your student can stop by room 220 in the Administration Building to practice interviewing and receive vital feedback to strengthen their interviewing skills. Remind your student to look for emails regarding details about these events.  Contact Career Services to schedule an appointment.

While Interview Skills Week is going on, your student can also attend an information session called, ‘Why do a Co-op or Internship?’.  This session is designed to help your student learn about all of the benefits of a co-op or internship, give them some tips on how to get one, and give them a chance to hear from current students about their internship or co-op experiences. This event will take place on Tuesday, September 25 in room 139 in Fisher Hall at 6:00 p.m.

Michigan Tech Career Services hosts a variety of great events throughout the year to help students with career development and job placement. Events range from the Resume Blitz and Interview Skills Week mentioned above, to a Dining Etiquette Dinner, Networking Skills information session, and a Negotiating Job Offers meeting. A complete list of the events offered by Career Services can be found on the Career Services Online Calendar.

As always, please feel free to email me with any questions or concerns you may have.

-Samantha Allen

Family Weekend

Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula is beautiful at this time of year: the weather is gorgeous, students are back on campus, and the leaves will soon begin to change. One of the best parts about being a Michigan Tech parent is having the opportunity to visit the Keweenaw and experience all of these changes at Michigan Tech’s Family Weekend, scheduled to be held October 12-14. Family Weekend is a tradition that provides parents with an opportunity to spend time with their student while exploring Michigan Tech and the local community.


If you are visiting Michigan Tech for Family Weekend, you should register online at the COMPASS registration page. This ensures that COMPASS will have everything ready for you when you arrive on campus. On the registration page, you may sign up to  attend any events that interest you (keep in mind that events/activities fill up quickly).

Events to attend

Family Weekend offers many great activities to take part in. There are opportunities to explore the outdoors, learn about the history of the local area, and much more. If you have a strong interest in exploring, you and your student could go hiking to a waterfall, take a boat cruise along the Keweenaw, try out the high ropes course, or canoe on the Sturgeon River. There are so many options—something for every family!

You can find a complete listing of all the activities being offered on the Family Weekend website. However, I will highlight a few of the activities that may be of interest.

Friday, October 12

2011 Cardboard Boat Races

Portage Lake sunset cruise: Board the Isle Royale Queen for a scenic cruise along the Portage Lake shoreline.

Family Weekend movie: Sit back, relax, and enjoy a family-friendly movie with your student!

Quincy Mine tour: See first-hand the equipment and workings of this once bustling copper mine, which is the home of the world’s largest steam hoist!

Cardboard boat races: Watch Michigan Tech students make a voyage aboard a cardboard boat! This event always proves entertaining to watch.

Saturday, October 13

Smelter tour: Take a tour of the most complete early 20th-century copper smelting site in the world!

Chairlift color tour: Enjoy a beautiful bird’s eye view of the Copper Country and campus from the top of Mont Ripley.

Portage Lake sunset cruise: Board the Isle Royale Queen for a scenic cruise along the Portage Lake shoreline.

Glow bowling: Join us for some old-fashioned fun at Michigan Tech’s bowling alley. Bowl under the glow of black lights with music and refreshments.

Sunday, October 14

Hungarian Falls hike: This is truly a beautiful site! Don’t miss the breathtaking views of waterfalls and wilderness on a hike at Hungarian Falls.

Keweenaw brunch: End your weekend with a delicious Sunday brunch.

Chairlift color tour: Enjoy a beautiful bird’s eye view of the Copper Country and campus from the top of Mont Ripley.

There are so many wonderful activities being offered for Family Weekend! Be sure to check out the full listing of events on the Family Weekend website. I hope you have the opportunity to enjoy  Family Weekend 2012 and experience all that the Keweenaw has to offer. There really is something for all families and it is a great time to see your student, as well as to check out the fall colors. If you have any questions or comments about Family Weekend, feel free to comment on this post or contact COMPASS at 906-487-3558 (open 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. during the week) or email

-Samantha Allen

Outdoor Adventure Program

Photo taken on The Isle Royale Line Sunset Cruise:

Students are back and the weather is beautiful: two reasons why it’s the perfect time to learn about Michigan Tech’s Outdoor Adventure Program (OAP). The goal of OAP is to help connect your student to the outdoors through guided trips, leadership training, information sessions, and equipment rentals. OAP works closely with student organizations to help advertise and run events.


OAP offers a huge list of items that can be rented at a low cost for Tech students. Is your student interested in going camping? For a one-night trip, he or she can rent:

  • 30-degree sleeping bag for $4.00
  • 2-person tent from $8.00-10.00
  • Stove and fuel for $7.00
  • Large cooler for $2.00

These are only a few of the options. OAP also rents backpacks, kayaking packages, canoeing packages, snowshoes, Trek mountain bikes, and much more. OAP provides great opportunities for students to explore the Keweenaw at a very low cost.

Challenge Course

OAP offers an outdoor challenge course. The OAP challenge course is open from mid May until the end of October. The course consists of two parts: low elements and high elements.

Low elements: This part of the course consists of eleven overall activities; however, most groups focus on four or five elements. The activities tend to involve a lot of team-building, leadership development, and improvement of communication skills. I have done this course and it really is a lot of fun!

High elements: The high course, which was built in 2009, includes elements such as the 250-foot zip line and a high ropes course. Although the focus is more on individual challenges, as many as ten people can participate at a time.

Activities in the Keweenaw


If your student has any interest in biking, the Keweenaw has a lot of great trails! The Upper Peninsula is one of the more predominant places for biking in the Midwest. Some of the trails that your student could check out are Black Creek, Maasto Hiihto/Churning Rapids, Michigan Tech Trails, Swedetown, and Copper Harbor. Visit the OAP biking website to see the list of maps. Not only are there maps for the trails, Tech also has three student organizations focused on biking that your student could join: Copper Country Cycling ClubRed Jacket Cycling, and the Keweenaw Trekkers.


Encourage your student to visit the Hungarian falls!

Michigan Tech offers a student organization called Ridge Roamers, which is a rock climbing group. There is a rock wall at the Student Development Complex in the Multi-Purpose room and the Ridge Roamers meet there every Wednesday. To get some real outdoor experience, the Ridge Roamers maintain rock climbing routes up at the cliffs north of Mohawk.


OAP offers trips to go and view waterfalls in the local area. I recently was able to go on my first real waterfall experience here in the Keweenaw—to the Hungarian Falls, pictured at right—and it was amazing. Visit the waterfall website for an interactive map that allows you to pinpoint where many of the local falls are.


As a student at Michigan Tech, it is almost imperative to embrace the snow. In order to do this, it helps to be able to go outside and enjoy the snow. There are plenty of activities to do—cross country skiing, downhill skiing, snowboarding, sledding, and snowshoeing, to name a few.

One great thing about our University is that even if you don’t know how to ski, you can take a skiing course with a student instructor who can teach you! When I moved to Michigan Tech I knew how to cross country ski, but never had been downhill skiing. I took the downhill skiing course and loved every second of it! It was great to spend time outside, learn something new, and take advantage of the awesome snow.

I hope this will help you provide some ideas to your student when they need a break from school. Encourage them to stop in and meet the OAP staff; they are always looking to get more students involved in the outdoors.

Please email if you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions.

Samantha Allen