Archives—January 2013

A Queen, Skits, and Some Awesome Statues: Winter Carnival 2013

Luckily most of the snow that was dumped on Houghton over the last couple of weeks has survived the fluctuating temperatures. Mother Nature has been showing her temperamental side, throwing subzero temperatures followed by above average warmth at the area. Why is it lucky that the snow survived, you ask? Winter Carnival 2013 is only one week away! Running February 6-9, excitement is already building on campus, as classes are canceled on Thursday and Friday in honor of the celebrations. Many students across campus have been busily slushing, packing, and detailing some amazing statues in preparation for this acclaimed winter festival, an annual event at Michigan Tech. It’s managed by Tech’s Blue Key National Honor Society chapter, a student organization here on campus. Winter Carnival is great because it is almost entirely planned by students for their peers and community members to enjoy! This year’s theme is “Heroes and Villains Find Their Powers, In These Frozen Winter Hours”, which means that student must follow this theme as they participate in the various events.

Winter Carnival has a bit of a competitive streak, as student organizations from across campus compete in a Queen’s competition, statues, skits, and special events. These special events are unique, ranging from human ice bowling to curling to broomball. Organizations accumulate points depending on how well they perform in each segment of Carnival. The winning organization wins a trophy, bragging rights, and other perks! Here are explanations of some of the major components of Winter Carnival:

The Queen
It wouldn’t be a Winter Carnival without the crowning of the Winter Carnival Queen. Several wonderful women of Michigan Tech are nominated by student organizations across campus to represent them in the Queen’s Competition. These women campaign for student body votes, and then the finalists move on to a competition where they show off their talents and answer questions in front of a panel of judges. The winner receives a scholarship and wins points for the organization that she represents. These points help the organization in the overall Carnival Competition.


Another great part of every Winter Carnival is Stage Revue. This event allows organizations to show off their acting talents as they hit the Rosza Center stage to wow the judges. The skits never fail to be hilarious…and a little bit crazy! Judges are selected from the local community to score the performers on creativity, overall concept, and the quality of the performance overall. The audience also gets to vote for their favorite skit, which goes into determining the winner.


In the opinion of many, statues are the highlight of Winter Carnival. Students put many hours of work into these towering sculptures of snow and ice, drawing spectators from all over the Great Lakes region and beyond. Some statues have a month of work behind them, while others are completed during the “all-nighter”, the Wednesday of Winter Carnival. During the “all-nighter” students stay up all night working on statues, drinking hot cocoa, eating free chili, and dancing to the music that resonates from the snow speakers in the middle of campus.

Perhaps you’ve had the pleasure of experiencing a Winter Carnival, or maybe you’re planning to this year. Either way, I highly recommend that you check it out as it truly is amazing! I hope that your student has a wonderful Carnival, and, if you are unable to make it, that he or she tells you all about it. If you are making the trip to Houghton, I hope that it is safe and enjoyable, and that you have a memorable and eventful Winter Carnival!

Living on campus

Now that the new semester has officially kicked off and students are starting to get back into the swing of things, it’s time to start thinking about housing for next year. That’s right everyone, ’tis the season of re-contracting in the residence halls of Michigan Tech. Students have a few decisions to make about their living arrangements for the next academic year. From my experience, living on campus is both fun and convenient! I lived in Wadsworth Hall for my first two years at Michigan Tech, and I made many great memories and lasting friends during that time. On-campus housing really is a great option for students who want to stay closely connected to what’s happening on campus.

Students studying in a residence hall kitchenette

The re-contracting process will be happening throughout the week, so talk with your students about their housing plans. Priority is determined based on the number of credits a student has earned and which housing option a student chooses. A student may elect to stay in the same room, move to a different room in the same house, move to a different room in the same residence hall, or move to a different residence hall. Check out the housing registration timeline for the important dates:

Live in the same room January 21
Unable to live in same room January 22 Students cannot sign up for their same room and are given priority to select another room
Live in a different room in the same house January 23 90+ credits midnight to noon

60 – 89 credits noon to midnight

January 24 30-59 credits midnight to noon

0-29 credits noon to midnight

Live in a different room in the same hall January 25 90+ credits midnight to noon

60 – 89 credits noon to midnight

January 26 30-59 credits midnight to noon

0-29 credits noon to midnight

Live in any hall January 27
Off-Campus January 28
Closed January 30 Sign-up closes at midnight; After this date you may sign up by visiting 153 Wadsworth Hall
April 1 Waiting List: You will be considered after first-year students.

To check the number of credits that they have, not including those they are enrolled in for the current semester, students can visit Banweb. Once students sign up for a room, they have the option of requesting a roommate. The person that they request will then receive an email, and will have the opportunity to either accept or deny the request.

Should a student decide to re-contract after January 30, he or she must go the Housing Office in 153 Wadsworth Hall. To access the sign-up for on-campus housing website from January 21 to 30, students should go to and click the sign-up icon. Students will be asked to enter their ISO login information. After selecting a room to live in for the next academic year, students will then be able to sign their housing contracts electronically.

Each year, Housing and Residential Life holds a video contest that allows students to explain why they enjoy living in the residence halls. To see this year’s winners and learn more about why the residence halls are a great place to live, check out the YouToo contest page.

Also coming up this week, is Heikinpäivä, a festival celebrating Saint Henrik, the patron saint of Finland. The festival takes place annually just across the bridge from Michigan Tech in Hancock. There will be food, games, a parade, and Finnish cultural displays. To learn more about the event, visit the festival schedule.

A Brand New Year

Welcome back!

First off, happy 2013! I hope that you all enjoyed a long break with your students back home, and that your holiday season was both warm and bright. The new year brings a whole new semester, with Monday, January 14th the first day of spring 2013 courses. What better way to kick off this semester than with a much needed dose of snow! Finally, after much anticipation, Houghton is starting to catch up on its usual snowy winter. According to Keweenaw County’s website, there is now almost two feet of snow on the ground, and students are finally able to get out on Mont Ripley and the Tech Trails for some skiing, snowshoeing, and other winter recreational activities!

Hockey update

In other news on campus, the Huskies hockey team won the Great Lakes Invitational for the first time since 1980. The final game was a shutout, the Huskies winning 4-0 against Western Michigan University. This is a great accomplishment for Michigan Tech’s athletic programs and is just one more reason why Michigan Tech is a great place to be!

Get ready for broomball!

There is also an update on another icy sport on campus, as the ball drop of the 2013 broomball season was at 5:00 pm on Tuesday, January 15. Broomball started at Michigan Tech in the early 1990s. Today, over 126 teams participate each year, making it one of the most popular and beloved intramural sports on campus. The game is played with taped brooms and a soft ball on constructed ice rinks. Players are required to wear helmets, and many elect to wear elbow and knee pads while on the ice.

Winter Carnival 2013

Finally, Winter Carnival is just around the corner. This year’s carnival will begin on Wednesday, February 6 and run through Saturday, February 9. There will be many great events for students, including the all-nighter with food, music, and tons of statue building. Month-long statue construction began Monday, January 14, so some students are already hard at work creating their snowy masterpieces. Watch for Winter Carnival updates as the event gets closer.

Now that the Spring semester has started, I will be writing articles weekly once again. Be sure to check back for updates on Winter Carnival, information about housing, and the Spring Career Fair (just to name a few). As always, thank you for reading! Feel free to email any questions to or post a comment.

Until next week,