Archives—March 2013

A Preview of Undergraduate Research

This past weekend, high school students and their families had a chance to explore all of the amazing opportunities that Michigan Tech has to offer during Preview Day 2013. Some of you may remember attending Preview Day in the past, and hopefully your experience was both excellent and memorable! This annual event invites accepted students to come see what Michigan Tech can offer them, and to get a taste of campus before they decide on where they’d like to attend college. This year’s Preview Day was Saturday, March 23.

Upon arriving for check-in at the Rosza Center, students were greeted by some of Michigan Tech’s eager and energetic students who handed out welcome packets and answered any questions that students and their families had. Next came information sessions about some of the great opportunities for students, like study abroad, financial aid, student life, and more.

After enjoying a free lunch in the Wadsworth Hall dining hall, students and families were able to check out the Michigan Tech Showcase to chat with respresentatives from departments across campus. This was a chance to learn about different majors and minors, and to get more information about life at Michigan Tech. Campus tours were available to give prospective students a more in-depth look at what life as a Michigan Tech student is like.

Students working on an enterprise project

To add to all of the great Preview Day activities, the Undergraduate Research Expo was also held on Saturday. The expo is organized by the Honors Institute and is a venue for undergraduate researchers to present their research to faculty, staff, and visiting students and families. This gave prospective students a glimpse into the type of work they could do if they chose to attend Michigan Tech, and allowed student presenters to show off all of their hard work. Each poster presentation was judged by faculty, and the top three posters received cash prizes.

This was the first year for the Undergraduate Research Expo, as it used to be part of the Undergraduate Expo. This event featured enterprise teams, undergraduate research, and senior design projects. However, the event had gotten too large, so a separate event was created to focus specifically on the work of undergraduate researchers.

Students Making a Difference

Houghton is looking less than ready for spring as students are returning to classes after Spring Break. The snow is once again flying through the air and the wind is whipping around campus. It’s not exactly what most of us were hoping for, as tomorrow marks the first “official” day of spring. Luckily, there is an event coming up at the end of the week that will warm our hearts if not our fingers and toes.

This Friday brings the annual Standathon fundraising event. Held in the Student Development Complex, the event runs from 7:00 p.m. on Friday evening until 7:00 a.m. on Saturday morning. Each year, the Standathon Student Organization organizes this twelve-hour standing marathon to raise money for Bay Cliff Health Camp in Marquette, MI. Bay Cliff provides recreational and rehabilitation programming for children and adults with physical disabilities.

A beautiful shot of Bay Cliff in Winter

The money raised during the Standathon event helps to sponsor campers and ease the financial burden if attending the camp. Last year Standathon raised and donated over $6,000 to Bay Cliff, and this year the goal is set even higher at $7,000.

Attending the event means way more than just standing around for twelve hours, as there are many different activities to help fill the night. This year’s event boasts live bands, a rave room with a DJ, the Tech’s Got Talent show, an eating contest, black light mini-golf, life-size board games, demonstrations by the Mind Trekkers, and much more! There is also free food and a ton of great prizes—including a grand prize of a Google Nexus 7 tablet—that are raffled off throughout the night.

Donations are encouraged to gain entrance to the event, but all of the money collected goes directly to Bay Cliff. A $10 donation gets students entrance to the event, $15 gets students entrance and an event t-shirt, and $20 gets students entrace, a t-shirt, and enters them into the grand prize raffle.

Blizzard chilling at the life-size board games at last year's event

Standathon offers students a chance to participate in a large-scale community service event. Not only does the event provide a fun and safe way to spend a Friday night, but also a way to truly make a difference in the lives of others in a big way. The Standathon Student Organization works all year to make this event a huge success. These students organize all of the activities, contact local businesses to get prizes, coordinate all volunteers, as well as all other aspects to this complex event.

I hope you will share this event with your student and wish the Standathon Student Organization the best of luck with this year’s Standathon! If you have any questions, concerns, or comments, please feel free to post a comment or email me directly at

Meet the New Spring Break 2.0

Now that there are only a few days until spring break 2013 kicks off, Michigan Tech students are excited to take some time off from classes to relax, go on a trip, or to head home to hang out with friends and family. Just a reminder: this year’s Spring Break is Saturday, March 9 to Sunday, March 17.

Students on a past trip to Florida


Students who are planning to head home for break have a few choices when it comes to travel. The Inter-Residence Hall Council Rideboard is a great online resource for Michigan Tech students. The RideBoard allows students who are looking for a ride home to post ride requests or students who have a car to post that they are searching for others who live in the same area to ride with them. This is a great way for students who live in the same area to arrange travel plans, split up the cost of fuel, and have some company on the long and sometimes monotonous trek home. In addition to riding with fellow students, there is the Indian Trails bus service that services the area. Students can check out the available routes and schedule by visiting the Indian Trails website.

Last week, I told you about some of the Alternative Spring Break trips that the Outdoor Adventure Program (OAP) is putting on for students who want a more adventurous break experience. However, there are some additional trips that other departments around campus are planning for students as well.

Silicon Valley Experience

The School of Business and Economics at Michigan Tech is taking fifteen lucky students to California’ for the third annual Silicon Valley Experience. These student will get the opportunity to interact with some of the tech giants of the area by touring and networking with companies including Google, Cisco, Kyocera, Brocade, and Tesla. Students will learn about the work culture of Silicon Valley, business strategies, and the cutting-edge technology of these awesome companies. Student get the chance to see what companies outside of the Midwest are like, and experience a totally different kind of professional environment by learning about these fast-paced companies. Perhaps most importantly, students learn about career paths in high-tech industries from some of the leading companies in the business!

Students in Silicon Valley (photo from School of Business & Economics)

Inspiring Education

Many students from the Michigan Tech chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers are returning to their hometown of Detroit over break. However, this isn’t just your average trip back home to relax. These students will be busy visiting seven different schools to talk with younger students about the possibilities of college and careers in engineering. They will be putting on Family Engineering Nights at some of the schools, including activities that get the whole family involved and inspired to consider engineering and higher education as options. The main goal is to show these younger students—many of whom have never even considered college as an option—that higher education is something that they can attain.

To the Windy City

Another group of students will be heading to Chicago over break to explore the city and have some fun! International Programs and Services (IPS) organizes this trip each year to give both international and domestic students an affordable way to get away over break. IPS secures transportation to the city and accommodations for students, but once they are in the city, the students are free to do as they wish by shopping, dining, and sightseeing. This gives international students a chance to experience what city life in the US is all about, and to get acclimated to the culture of spring break.