Archives—October 2013

Safehouse and Make a Difference Day

Greetings, Parents.

I hope you all had a wonderful week! It’s been very busy around campus, but the weather has been so nice lately that it’s hard to complain. The sunshine and vibrancy of the colors is making this fall as beautiful as ever . . . although the snow we got on Monday is signaling that winter may come early this year!

This part of the semester can get busy for many students because of several great community service events happening on campus, including Make a Difference Day and Safehouse.

Make a Difference Day–taking place Saturday, October 26–is an awesome opportunity for students to get involved in serving the local community.

Michigan Tech Students Raking Leaves for Make a Difference Day

Created by USA Weekend Magazine, Make a Difference Day takes place on the fourth Saturday of every October. Volunteers locally and around the world donate their Saturday mornings to lend a hand to community members in need. Students from Michigan Tech can participate with their halls or student organizations, or as individual volunteers. Volunteers will be assigned to different tasks, such as raking leaves or performing household chores for senior citizens and individuals with disabilities throughout the Keweenaw. Last year, more than 700 volunteers and 50 student groups participated in Make a Difference Day, and this year we hope to have even more! To learn more about the Make a Difference Day national program, please visit USA Weekend Magazine.

A Dungeon crafted during Safehouse

In addition to Make a Difference Day, Safehouse will take place on Saturday, October 26. Safehouse is a unique community service project where students living in the residence halls hand out candy to local trick-or-treaters. Sponsored by the Inter-Residence Housing Council, students and their hallmates festively decorate their “houses” and compete with other halls on campus to create the scariest or most fun decorations. After the students have completed their hall transformations, local trick-or-treaters make their way through campus to collect their candy. This is a great opportunity for students who are normally too busy during the school year to give back to the community and to make Halloween special for local children. Not to mention, they’ll have a blast doing it! The halls are open to the public with a guided tour from 3:30 to 6:00 p.m. on Saturday evening.

In addition to Safehouse, a variety of other festive events will also be taking place this week to celebrate Halloween:

There will be a Halloween Dance sponsored by the Douglass Houghton Hall Council on Friday, October 25, where students can dress up, enjoy free snacks, and dance the night away in their Halloween costumes.

The Wadsworth Hall Student Association will be sponsoring Scary Good Cookies, where residents are invited to make festive cookies and frightening treats on Wednesday, October 23.

Michigan Tech Filmboard will be showing the horrifying classic The Shining on Friday, October 25, and Saturday, October 26 to celebrate the frightening festivities.

Thanks for reading, and I hope you all have a wonderful week! If you have any comments or questions for me regarding ParentNet Weekly, please don’t hesitate to email me at  Until next time!


LeaderShape 2014

Hello Parents,

This week marks the half-way point for students this semester! We only have seven more weeks of classes until the end—Winter Break—and five more

2013 LeaderShape Alumni
2013 LeaderShape Alumni

until Thanksgiving break. It has definitely flown by! This part of the semester is always the hardest because it’s the longest stretch with no breaks. But it just makes the semester go by that much more quickly!

Applications are now available for students to apply for the LeaderShape® Institute. LeaderShape® is a weeklong leadership retreat that teaches students of all levels what it means and what it takes to be successful, effective leaders. The program focuses on how to “lead with integrity” and incorporates many concentrated and interactive activities for students to learn what this means in an intensive, hands-on approach. The institute takes place during the last week of Winter Break, January 6–11, so participants do not miss classes. Thanks to many generous donations from Michigan Tech and LeaderShape® alumni, it costs just $100 for students to participate.

I myself am a 2012 LeaderShape® alumna, so I’m very excited to be sharing this topic with you today! LeaderShape® was definitely an unforgettable and once-in-a lifetime experience that is invaluable to students seeking to be the best leaders they can be. Here’s what other students say about LeaderShape®:

”For me, LeaderShape® was an opportunity to explore who I am: my strengths and weaknesses as a person and as a leader. The environment was so open that I felt I could talk about who I am now and who I strive to be in the future without fear of criticism. LeaderShape® helped me set goals for the kind of world I want to create and equipped me with new resources to go pursue my dreams. To me, the ideal of LeaderShape® wasn’t to TEACH us how to be leaders, but rather to BUILD us into leaders.” – Will Lehman, fourth-year psychology major, 2013 LeaderShape® alumnus

“LeaderShape® provided me an amazing opportunity to meet many student leaders from across Michigan Tech’s campus. Starting each day bright and early, the week is filled with intense and thought-provoking activities. At night I had the opportunity to get to know the friends I was making on a deeper level, and while I did not know it at the time, they would become an essential part of my future growth in my courses and around campus. A big part of LeaderShape ® is the development of a vision. I suppose mine was originally just a dream, the chance to make a difference around the world by working on a service project. Today I am a member of the Pavlis Institute for Global Technological Leadership and will be traveling to Ghana during the summer of 2014. Opportunities like LeaderShape® have long-lasting effects; I am so glad I had the privilege to meet the people and have the experiences that I did.” – Brandon Martinez, third-year scientific and technical communications major, 2012 LeaderShape® alumnus

“LeaderShape® was a life-changing experience. I would highly recommend it to anyone who is looking to better themselves as a leader. The program is structured in such a way that you learn how to become a better leader by first learning about yourself (how you think/make decisions, what your morals are, etc.) and then applying that knowledge to your interactions with others. LeaderShape® gave me opportunities to make connections with other students who share a common goal of bettering the world. Many of these connections have turned into friendships that I believe have changed me for the better.” – Kristin Flickinger, third-year biomedical engineering major, 2013 LeaderShape® alumna

As you can see, LeaderShape® is a truly unique experience that caters to all different kinds of leadership styles, helping students grow and proliferate as confident leaders. For more info, check out  LeaderShape®.

That’s all for this week! If you have any questions or comments about LeaderShape® or other university happenings, please feel free to email me at


Fall in the Copper Country

Hello again, Parents!

I hope everyone has been having a wonderful week! As I’m sure you’ve noticed in each of your hometowns, fall is here and is in full swing. Fall is such a

A view of the fall colors. Photo courtesy of David Clark Photography.
A view of the fall colors from Hancock. Photo courtesy of David Clark Photography.

beautiful time in Houghton; the leaves are changing, the air is crisp, and Halloween decorations are making their way onto local doorsteps. Although the leaves have been a bit late to turn this year, the colors are now starting to come out and it’s definitely been worth the wait! The fall color tours are starting up as people from all over come and take rides up the chairlift at Mont Ripley to get a gorgeous view of the town and the vibrancy of the changing colors. In addition to this festive event, the annual Copper Country Color Tour sponsored by the Michigan Tech Cycling club took place on September 28, where cycling enthusiasts could choose to bike a 50 km, 100 km, or even 200 km route around the lively Keweenaw Peninsula! Every year this event takes place during the peak of the color season so cyclists are able to see the beauty that the fall season brings to the Keweenaw. This year, the Copper Country Color Tour was quite successful as it celebrated its 40th year with a multitude of students and community participants!

Fall also signifies another special event for the area: Family Weekend! Family Weekend is an exciting time where parents and family are welcomed to the campus for a weekend filled with fun activities to participate in with their Tech student. This year, Family Weekend will take place on Friday, October 11 and continue through Sunday, October 13. During Family Weekend, the campus is open for families to explore campus and engage in some exciting adventures including tours of local attractions such as the Quincy Mine, the Sturgeon River, and the Chair Lift Color Tour; varsity athletic games in volleyball,  soccer, and football, the high ropes course challenge, and the Portage Lake Sunset Cruise! Family Weekend is great opportunity to both visit your hard-working student and to get to know the Keweenaw a little bit better. For more information on Family Weekend, please visit the website here.

In addition to the events going on around campus, the Keweenaw also has some autumn festivities going on in the area.  Like Mont Ripley, Mount Bohemia  is also having fall color lift rides on Saturday, October 12 and Sunday, October 13 from 11:00 AM until 5:00 PM.  Now residents and tourists alike can explore the vibrant colors of the Keweenaw.

The Annual Fall Festival sponsored by the St. Paul the Apostle church in Calumet took place from Friday, October 4 through Sunday, October 6 and included activities such as bingo, Sunday Mass with polka music, ethnic food booths, a bake sale, and raffles.

The start of the Gratiot River North trail ran in the Fall Color Classic. Photo courtesy of
The start of the Gratiot River North trail ran in the Fall Color Classic. Photo courtesy of

The Fall Color Classic trail run also took place on Saturday, October 5 at 10:00 am. Residents were welcome to participate in an 8 km trail walk/run through the North Woods beside the vibrant shoreline of Lake Superior. Sponsored by the North Woods Conservatory, all of the proceeds of this event go towards Seven Mile Point and the Save the Keweenaw Beaches effort.

That’s all for this week! I hope fall is as festive and celebrated in each of your homes as it is here. Have an enjoyable week!


Homecoming, Career Fair, and Open House!

Hello, Parents!

It’s been an exciting week here at Michigan Tech! We just wrapped up with Homecoming 2013, the Fall Career Fair  on Tuesday, September 24, and the Open House Saturday, September 28.

Homecoming is a fun and crazy tradition that Michigan Tech has been celebrating since 1929. Students compete with their Residence halls, student

Cardboard Boat Races! Photo courtesy of
Cardboard Boat Races!
Photo courtesy of

organizations, or Greek organizations in a ton of crazy events throughout the week, and whichever team racks up the most points wins Homecoming!  Homecoming currently consists of a wide variety of wacky events such as Window Painting at the SDC and the Rozsa Center; a Kickball tournament; Homecoming Games, where students compete in a mixture of picnic games and activities; the Homecoming Parade, where students and the Tech Pep Band march through Downtown Houghton dressed in costumes and zany outfits; a Pep Rally; the Cardboard Boat Race, where student groups build boats out of just cardboard and duct tape and race them in the Houghton Canal; Homecoming Court, varsity sports games in football, soccer, and volleyball, and much more!

Homecoming this year was really cool! The sorority Alpha Sigma Tau (AST) won Homecoming, and students Adam Tuff and Beccie Manshaem were voted Homecoming King and Queen! Tech Football also won their Homecoming game against Walsh with an awesome victory of 29-7; Tech Women’s Soccer joined in with a shutout of 1-0 against Lake Erie; and Tech Volleyball continued their winning streak against Saginaw Valley State University in a five-game match.

Students were also getting ready for the 2013 Fall Career Fair, which took place on Tuesday, September 24. The Career Fair is a huge event that recruits over 250 companies that come to campus looking to hire Tech students for internships, co-ops, and even full-time positions! This is a great opportunity for students to practice their professionalism, to network with companies, and to get their name out into the working world. It’s a common misconception that “companies don’t like to hire first-year students”, but this is simply NOT TRUE. Many students at Michigan Tech have gotten co-ops or internships during or after their first year; but even if they don’t get hired right away, it’s very common for companies to remember those applicants specifically when they return to Tech for future Career Fairs.

Bird's Eye View of the Career Fair at Michigan Tech. Photo courtesy of
Bird’s Eye View of the Career Fair at Michigan Tech. Photo courtesy of

In preparation for the Career Fair, Career Services at Michigan Tech held a wide variety of special events to help students get ready for the big day and to help shape them into more desirable applicants. Some of the events included Resume Blitzes, where Career Services staff and company representatives gave tips to students about how to make their resumes more competitive; and Mock Interview Sessions, where students could get one-on-one practice with a Career Services staff member to help improve their interview skills. These events without a doubt have helped students feel ready for the all-important interview and have helped them become the best candidates possible.

To make the week even busier for students, the Michigan Tech Open House took place all day on Saturday, September 28! Some of you may remember attending Tech’s Open House with your own student. The Open House at Michigan Tech shows prospective students the different academic programs on campus by presenting the different departments, professional organizations, and Learning Centers associated with each field of study here at Tech and helps students see what each program offers to current students. Many undergraduate students participate in the Open House, whether they are representing a student org, helping a professor with a demo for their department, or as a Learning Center coach, which gives potential students a great opportunity to hear what Tech is like from a student perspective. Along with the academic programs, Financial Aid and Admissions are also very much involved in the Open House and provide information about tuition and scholarships and the application process to help the prospective students decide if Michigan Tech is the right school for them.

That’s it for now! If there is a topic or theme that you’d like to hear more about at Michigan Tech, please don’t hesitate to email me at