Category Archives: Uncategorized

Alumni Weekend and KSEF

Hello parents!

This week has cooled off in the Keweenaw, but that doesn’t mean there is a lack of things to do!  Alumni Reunion and the Keweenaw Science and Engineering Festival are in full swing, bringing together the community, visitors, and science.

The Alumni Reunion is an annual event that brings together alumni from around the country and includes plenty of activities to get everyone involved. From campus tours to class gatherings and photos, it is a busy weekend for people who spent their undergraduate time at Michigan Tech. To review events that occur during the Alumni Reunion, follow this link.  This year the classes that graduated in 1965, ’75, ’85, ’90, ’95, and 2005 are being recognized along with hockey alumni. Additionally, the Golden M’s, any alumnus/a that has graduated from Michigan Tech over 50 years ago, are being honored.

This is an example of some of the work that will be displayed at the Rozsa gallery.
This is an example of some of the work that will be displayed at the Rozsa gallery.

The Keweenaw Science and Engineering Festival (KSEF) is a brand new event designed to get more people interested in science, technology, engineering and math.  The schedule of events may be viewed here if you are interested in learning more about it. In conjunction with KSEF, there is an exhibit in the Rozsa Center Gallery called Scale: Balancing Art and Technology which will be displayed through September 11.

A couple of other reminders as the summer is winding down. New student orientation is just a few weeks away. To ensure you and your student are prepared, follow this link to the Orientation website. For students living in the residence halls, the wait-list for parking is now available. Follow this link to transportation services for more information on how to sign up.

As always, feel free to email me at with any questions on this information or anything else.

Have a good week!



Planning Ahead

Hello, parents! This week has been a pretty nice one in the Keweenaw (most weeks in the summer up here seem to be that way).  I hope everyone has been doing well and is enjoying the summer. We’re over half way through it and I’ve already seen school supplies out at the stores, crazy to think there’s only one month until move in day and first year orientation!

As we are getting so close to the beginning of a new school year here at Michigan Tech, I just wanted to share some things for you and your student to keep in mind. One of the best tips I could give anyone starting school is to make a game plan. Even if it doesn’t work out exactly like you want it to, it is useful to try and plan out when you will study, when you will eat and keep those things consistent. The change from high school to college life, especially living in the residence halls, can lead to falling behind. Another option for the start of a new year is to go and meet new people. It could be the people that live around you or someone you met by going to a different club meeting, you never know where or when you could meet new friends. This article, from Buzzfeed, provides some more tips to surviving in your first year of college. Not everything works for everyone, the trick is figuring out what works for each student.

The idea of having a car to be able to make late night food runs or explore the area in any free time is one that can be very

The traditional first year student photo taken as part of orientation 2014.
The traditional first year student photo taken as part of orientation 2014.

appealing. There are quite a few students who bring cars to campus and there is a registration process for vehicles. If your student does plan on having a car with them, check this site for information and to be added to the wait list for resident parking. There is also information provided for commuter parking as well as bicycle registration.

Orientation helps students build a foundation for the rest of their time at Michigan Tech, while they also get to know the campus better and make connections with their fellow students.  If your student is a first year who will be going through orientation, follow this link which will take you to the orientation website.

There are so many things to do before school starts that it can be overwhelming. By planning ahead, you can get an idea of what is needed, what can wait and how to figure it all out. If there are any questions about any of this information or anything else, you can email me at


Outdoor Activities

Hello Parents!

Following one of the hottest weekends of the year in the Keweenaw, I wanted to share some more of the things that are available to do up here. One good resource for the outdoor adventuring student is the Outdoor Adventure Programs (OAP). They hold events throughout the summer and school year. This summer they are offering kayaking and paddle boarding clinics, have organized a trip to Isle Royale, and other camping and adventuring trips. For Orientation Week, OAP holds day trips to local places. In addition to hosting these events, OAP also rents gear, from bikes to paddle boards.

The Keweenaw History Center located in Calumet.
The Keweenaw History Center located in Calumet.

There is plenty to do around the Keweenaw. One of my personal favorites is to walk around touring some of the historical sites, and there are numerous opportunities to experience this rich history.  If you are interested in the history of copper mining, there are several places to explore that also include an underground tour. The Quincy Mine, the Adventure Mine, and the Delaware Mine are great options to learn more about mining and you can click on the name of the mine to see its website. All of these mines are Heritage Sites associated with the Keweenaw National Historical Park (KNHP). The KNHP covers a significant area of the Keweenaw and includes heritage sites, like the mines, that were integral to the history of the area. To learn more about the park, click here.

The sun over the water at the Houghton Breakers.
The sun over the water at the Houghton Breakers.

Of course, with all the Keweenaw has to offer, there are plenty of things to do and places to see without a guide or organized trip. If you are interested in learning more about the trails for hiking, biking, skiing, or snowshoeing, this site has great information. Beaches are also one of the most popular attractions around the Keweenaw. One of the student favorites is the Houghton Breakers. It is a stamp sand beach right on the edge of the Portage and is perfect for swimming, bonfires, and watching the sunset over the water. For more on the beaches in the Keweenaw, this website is a good resource.

If anyone has any questions on other things to do around the Keweenaw, feel free to email me at


Hello, Parents!

As Track B for summer classes begins and everyone is starting to get into the dog days of summer, I am getting started at the new ParentNet writer! My name is Erica LeClaire and I will be taking over for Valerie as she begins her journey after undergrad. She has been an awesome writer for ParentNet, a great student, and a perfect example of how one can succeed in college. I’m hoping that she trained me well to take over her position and that I’ll be able to continue her high level of work for my tenure. I want to wish her good luck as she sets off for graduate school.

With that, I will let you know some more about me. I am a local student here at Michigan Tech going into my third year. Through elementary school, I lived in Livonia, outside of Detroit. Both of my parents are from the Keweenaw, so they decided to move back and we’ve been here ever since! Growing up here, you get a new appreciation for the outdoor activities, the history, and the heritage of this beautiful place. Partially because of my appreciation of those things, I decided to pursue a more non traditional major at MTU and am in the history program.

In addition to studying and classes and all of those parts of college I am involved in some extracurriculars  as well. I am an active member of the Alpha Gamma Delta Women’s Fraternity and I’m the current president of the Anthropology club. Between these organizations, I get to have some pretty diverse experiences and met many different people on campus and in the community. As a part of Greek life at Michigan Tech, not only have I gained an invaluable network of people, but I have been able to find a place that I can lean on for help, trust with anything, and, as our motto states, live with purpose. Though it isn’t for everyone, I found my niche in Greek Life and have enjoyed my experience greatly. Anthropology club, on the other hand, connects me and other Social Sciences majors (or just people interested in it) with each other, our professors, and the greater Social Sciences community.

This is me at Hungarian Falls, a local favorite spot for hiking, snowshoeing, pictures and other things.

With the experience of being a commuter student, it was very important for me to get involved on campus. I have seen people fall on all different sides of the spectrum, from being super involved to not participating in campus life at all. When you don’t live in the dorms it is more challenging to decide to make the conscience effort to go to campus and meet other people, become part of an organization, or whatever it might be. Because of my interest in the lives of commuter students here at MTU, I took over the Commuter Assistant position and have been doing that for the past year. I am a resource for those students to get involved on campus, meet each other, and hopefully gain some new experiences in the campus community.

Working in another integral part of my life. Currently, I am a student security clerk with Public Safety and Police Services, while also working with the Wahtera Center for Student Success for ParentNet and as Commuter Assistant. I’ve mentioned what I do for the Wahtera Center, but as a student security clerk I am involved on campus in an entirely different way. For this job, I walk through campus, meet and interact with undergrad and graduate students, usually open/close a lot of doors.

Another for me that is very important is being involved with the community and volunteering within it. Being part of a sorority helps with becoming more involved in local and national philanthropic endeavors, we work with a local group that provides food for low income children outside of school and we also raise money for juvenile diabetes research and awareness. Recently, I have participated in the local Relay for Life in Houghton and the BridgeFeast fundraiser for the local Rotary.

I would like to thank you all for reading my post. I look forward to getting to share the happenings of Houghton and Michigan Tech throughout the year and hope that you gain something from it. I would once again like to recognize Valerie Taglione and thank her for everything she has done for me, ParentNet, and the university. If anyone has any questions, comments, or would just like to find out more about any of this, you can email me at


The 2015 Michigan Tech Concrete Canoe Team

Hello Parents,

The 2015 Michigan Tech Concrete Canoe team's canoe: Talvi Sielu, meaning Winter Soul in Finnish
The 2015 Michigan Tech Concrete Canoe team’s canoe: Talvi Sielu, which means “winter soul” in Finnish. Photo courtesy of Brad Roberts.

I hope you’re all having a great week! Everything in Houghton has been going wonderfully this week, as students are preparing to  take their Track A final exams, Summer Youth Program campers have taken hold of the campus, and prospective students tour the campus to learn more about Michigan Tech. The weather here has been pretty finicky; mother nature can’t decide if she wants the sun to shine or if she wants it to rain and the last few days it’s been raining while the sun is out (which makes for absolutely beautiful scenery!). But as usual, there’s been a lot going on this week. It was pointed out to me in an email from a parent that the Michigan Tech Concrete Canoe team went to nationals last weekend at Clemson University in Seneca, South Carolina!  In response, I’d like to write a short piece to congratulate the team and spread the word of the Concrete Canoe team.

Sponsored by the American Society of Civil Engineers, the concrete canoe competition consists of both a regional and national contest that judge undergraduate teams in four components:

1) Technical Paper
This professional paper outlines the engineering and design of the canoe, including the concrete mix proportions, design of the boat, construction methods, and everything else that went into creating the canoe.

2) Technical Presentation
The team must summarize the technical paper in a five-minute presentation in front of a board of judges.

3) Race
The team must compete in the following five races: Two-person Women’s Sprint, Two-person Men’s Sprint, Two-person Women’s Endurance, Two-person Men’s Endurance, and Four-person Co-ed Sprint.

4) Final Product
The canoe is then judged based on appearance and adherence to the official rules of dimensions and components of the concrete mix.

A photo of the female race in the National Concrete Canoe competition. Photo courtesy of Brad Roberts
A photo of one of the 2015 Women’s Races in the National Concrete Canoe competition. Photo courtesy of Brad Roberts.

The regional competition that Michigan Tech competes in includes teams from universities such as Western Michigan University and Michigan State University. There are over 200 other teams from across the nation that compete in their own regional competions. The top 10 teams from each regional competition then go on to compete at the national level.

Every year, the Michigan Tech team chooses a theme for the canoe that represents the team in an inspirational and creative way, and this theme is incorporated into the design of the canoe. The Concrete Canoe team works year-round during the academic year to design and build a well-engineered canoe; each member contributes over 3,000 hours of work to complete the final product!

This year, the Michigan Tech Concrete Canoe Team finished 13th overall in the national competition with their canoe, Talvi Sielu! They deserve to be recognized and congratulated for all of their hard work! For more pictures of the 2015 National Concrete Canoe Competition, feel free to visit this informative blog, written by Mr. Roberts, a parent himself. For more information about the National Concrete Canoe competition, please visit the official NCCC website.

As I mentioned last week, this will be my last ParentNet Weekly post and the new writer, Erica LeClaire, will be taking over next week. I will be leaving for Grand Rapids, Michigan to begin medical school at Michigan State in August. I just wanted to extend my heartfelt appreciation to all of you as I conclude my last post; writing for ParentNet has been a great learning experience for me and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time on the site and hearing from some of you through email. I wish you and your students the best of luck as they continue their careers here at Michigan Tech, and if you have any questions about anything, please feel free to email me at Thank you all so much!


2015 Bridgefest/BridgeFEAST Celebration!

Hello Parents,

I hope you’re all having a fantastic week! Everything is going well here, as the  sun continues to shine and the summer continues to fly by. Track A courses are almost over, as final exams quickly approach next week. Track B courses will begin Monday, June 29, and the new ParentNet Weekly writer, Erica LeClaire, will take over.

A beautiful photo taken of the Portage Lake Lift Bridge, courtesy of The annual celebration of this fantastic structure will take place this weekend from Friday, June 19 - Sunday June 21
A beautiful photo taken of the Portage Lake Lift Bridge, courtesy of The annual celebration of this fantastic structure will take place this weekend from Friday, June 19 – Sunday June 21

There’s a plethora of exciting events taking place this weekend, most notably the Bridgefest festival starting on Friday, June 19 and spanning through Sunday, June 21!  Bridgefest is an annual celebration of the Portage Lake Lift Bridge. Opening in 1959, the Portage Lake Lift Bridge is the widest and heaviest double-decked vertical lift bridge in the world. The ancestral structure of the modern day bridge was a wooden swing bridge in 1875. It was eventually replaced by the Portage Canal Swing Bridge, a steel swing bridge, in 1905. The Portage Canal Swing Bridge was finally replaced by the Portage Lake Lift Bridge, and continues to serve the Houghton and Hancock residents today. Bridgefest has been an annual tradition in the Houghton and Hancock communities since 1987 and includes an fun-filled weekend of local festivities and activities. Special events will begin on Friday, June 19 at 10:00 am and the celebration will continue until Sunday, June 21 at sunset. Some of these events include helicopter rides, a parade, sport contests such as hockey, volleyball, and ping pong, outdoor concerts, street vendors, fireworks, and the most important thing: the food!

Which brings me to the next celebration: in conjunction to the Bridgefest celebration, BridgeFEAST will be taking place from Friday, June 19 through Saturday, June 20! Known previously as Seafood Fest, BridgeFEAST is an annual food festival that is celebrated every year alongside Bridgefest to provide for one magnificent and delicious local celebration, and now includes a wide variety of other tasty meals in addition to its seafood roots. BridgeFEAST will be catered by some of the best restaurants in the local area, including the Library restaurant, Fitzgerald’s, Habeneros Mexican restaurant, and many more! Tokens for the BridgeFEAST celebration can be purchased on the BridgeFEAST website, and all of the proceeds go towards the Rotary Club of Houghton.

This annual festival has had a long-standing history in the local area and it is not a celebration that will go away anytime soon. The fun it brings and the appreciation for the bridge that comes along with it goes a long way for our local residents. The Portage Lake Lift Bridge is an iconic local landmark that holds emotional and sentimental ties to the area, especially for Michigan Tech students. I hope that if your students are in Houghton for the summer that they partake in this dazzling and memorable event!

That’s all I have for you this week! If you have any questions about the Bridgefest of BridgeFEAST festivities, or would like to see more information written on a specific topic, please feel free to email me at I look forward to writing for you next week, which will be my last article. Have a great weekend!


Outdoor Activities in the Keweenaw

Hello Parents,

A group of students taking advantage of the outdoor activities in the Copper Country as they kayak around the Portage Canal
A group of students taking advantage of the outdoor activities in the Copper Country as they kayak around the Portage Canal

I hope you’re all having a great week! The summer weather is finally here to stay which means the adventurous outdoor activities that the Keweenaw has to offer are more popular than ever. There are a plethora of activities for students and community members alike to enjoy during the summer months. Some of the most popular activities include hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, and canoeing. As promised last week, I’ll outline a more detailed description of these activities with various locations below.

Hiking is probably the most popular local outdoor activity and we have an incredible number of venturesome trails to explore. The Keweenaw and surrounding areas have over 30 established hiking trails with an extensive amount of backpacking trails as well. Here are some of the most beautiful and popular hiking trails. (For more details on these trails and for the trails not listed, please visit the Keweenaw Visitors Bureau website.)

1.) Marsin Preserve
The Marsin Preserve is owned by the Keweenaw Land Trust and is located along the Portage Canal. The sanctuary was designed to make the natural land open to the public to explore and enjoy the outdoors. There is both a preserve and a short hiking trail that includes shrubby areas, wet meadows, and a wide variety of wildlife to observe.

2.) Gratiot Lake Overlook Sanctuary
These trails include over 100 acres of Michigan Nature Association Sanctuary and one mile of nature trails. The terrain is fairly strenuous and includes a gradual 400-foot hike. This beautiful trail also encompasses a panoramic view of Gratiot Lake from a high peak as well as a gorgeous view of the waterfall on Eister Creek.

3.) Central Mine and Village
The Central Mine site houses two hiking trails of various length and difficulty. Sponsored by the Keweenaw Historic Society, these trails explore the woods and the historic site of the Central Mine, an early copper mine that was in operation from 1854 to 1898. The Central Mine and Village is especially unique because it not only encompasses wooded areas in its trails, but explores a historic copper mine as well.

4.) Estivant Pines
Estivant Pines Wilderness Nature Sanctuary in Copper Harbor is an absolutely gorgeous woodland that constitutes over 510 acres of hardwood and eastern white pine trees. Some of these trees have a diameter of over 3 feet! This Nature Sanctuary includes three looped trails of  rugged terrain. These incredible trails are open year round to for hiking, cross country skiing, and snowshoeing.

5.) Grinnell Memorial Nature Sanctuary
This most beautiful and challenging hike to Bare Bluff in Bete Gris is one of the most phenomenal sites in the Keweenaw. This robust and demanding three mile hike is at a high difficulty level, and it’s advised to allow three hours for the trip. The top of Grinnell Memorial Nature Sanctuary overlooks the southeast view of the Keweenaw Peninsula in an absolutely stunning view of Lake Superior and the surrounding areas of the Keweenaw. The trek is worth the challenge, however, as this is truly one of the most breath-taking locations in the area.

Mountain Biking
We have some fantastic mountain biking trails here in the Keweenaw with some nationally recognized courses! Michigan Tech students have the Michigan Tech trails right in their backyard, but if they are avid mountain bikers they might want to check out some of the other local trails. (For more details on the mountain biking trails and to explore more areas, please visit the Keweenaw Visitors Bureau website.)

1.) Copper Harbor
The Copper Harbor mountain biking trails has some of the best trails in the nation. Spanning over 30 miles, the trails range in difficulty from beginner to expert with most of the trails being for the advanced rider. The trails are very scenic with paths going along various inland lakes and beside the shores of Lake Superior. For more information on the Copper Harbor mountain biking trails, please visit the Copper Harbor Trails Club website.

2.) Bill Nichols Trail Rail
The Bill Nichols Trail connects Houghton to Mass City and spans a distance of 41 miles. The trail coasts along the former Copper Range Railroad for a smooth and adventurous ride around the Keweenaw. The trail crosses 3 bridges over the Firesteel River. This grade is also open to off-road vehicles.

3.) Swedetown Trails
The Swedetown Trails are located near Calumet, Michigan and span a total of 22 miles of single-lane trails. These trails are fantastic for both the beginner and advanced rider, and offer a plethora of loops and segments to allow riders to customize their own ride. In addition, there are also 8 miles of two-track trails to allow for side-by-side riding and running.

Kayaking and Canoeing
The Copper Country is also an absolute paradise for kayaking and canoeing. Because Houghton is an area surrounded by a variety of lakes, rivers, canals, and streams, kayaking and canoeing are a huge part of culture here. There are countless places for students to stick a kayak or canoe in the water and start paddling. Here are some of the more popular places where paddlers like to visit:

Copper Harbor
Copper Harbor offers a wide variety of waterways to explore. Most of these are inland lakes that are all within a ten-mile radius of the Harbor’s village limits. These lakes include Lake Fanny Hooe, Lake Manganese, Lake Medora, Lac La Belle, Schlatter’s Lake, and Lake Bailey. These lakes provide beautiful scenery and a wide variety of wildlife to observe along the way, all within a short drive from the Houghton/Hancock area.

Chassell: Sturgeon River and Sloughs
The Sturgeon River also offers an exciting adventure for local kayakers and canoers to paddle. The site offers a ramp for launching and landing small boats, which is especially convenient for launching a canoe. Explorers can make their way around the bay, down the Pike River, or Sturgeon River. The Sturgeon River offers beautiful scenic views, complete wildlife and animals.

Keweenaw Water Trail
The Keweenaw Water Trail runs along a beautiful, rugged coastline of the Keweenaw Peninsula and explores wilderness areas with parks, nature preserves, and sheltered harbors for camping spread intermittently throughout the trail. This waterway is unique because it allows the paddler to make a loop without having to backtrack along the pathway. The entire route can be paddled between six and eight days, so it’s a great trip for the adventurous paddler!

In addition to these exciting waterways, there are also plenty of kayaking and canoeing options right here in Houghton. One obvious choice for many paddlers is the Keweenaw Waterway, which includes Portage Lake on one side and the Portage Canal on the other. Paddlers can launch from anywhere along the canal and enjoy a beautiful trip that’s a little closer to home.

That’s everything I have for you this week! As you can see, there’s so much to do in the Keweenaw during the summer months. It’s such a beautiful outdoor paradise and I hope your students take advantage of these activities if they are up here for the summer! If you have any questions about outdoor activities in the Keweenaw or would like to see more information on a specific topic, please feel free to email me at Have a wonderful weekend!


Quincy Mine Tours and Other Local Happenings

Hello Parents,

A glowing photo of the historic Quincy Mine, located in Hancock, MI. Public tours of the Mine begin on Friday, June 5.
A glowing photo of the historic Quincy Mine, located in Hancock. Public tours of the Mine begin on Friday, June 5.

I hope you’re all having a great week! It’s been warmer here this week and it’s finally starting to feel like summer as we begin June and mark the halfway point through Track A courses. Campus has been lively and flourishing with busy students as they continue their hard work with classes, assignments, homework, and exams. Community life has been humming as well with various events taking place including the weekly Wednesday night Car Show at our local Culver’s restaurant, outdoor activities such as fishing, hiking, kayaking, and mountain biking, and a plethora of other special events.

Speaking of local special events, the famous and historic Quincy Mine Hoist will begin its public tour season starting this Friday, June 5. The Hoist will be open daily for tours from 9:30 am – 5:00 pm until Saturday, October 17. Located across the Portage Lift Bridge in Hancock, The Quincy Mine was established in 1846 and continued action for almost 100 years until 1945. It’s the world’s largest steam hoist and was one of the most successful commercial copper mining companies in the nation. Quincy Mine Tours take guests around the shaft house and continue down below ground into the actual hoist itself, where guests can get a glimpse of where the action took place during the mining era. It’s a very educational and engrossing trip that brings its tourists into a captivating excursion through time. For more information on the Quincy Mine and its tours, please visit the Quincy Mine Hoist Association website.

On Saturday, June 6, UP Cruising will be hosting a charity ride for war veterans. UP Cruising is a website dedicated to the avid motorcyclists in Michigan and provides a guide to biking in the UP. The website is one large road map of all the greatest biking routes in the UP, and offers suggestions for tourist stops, provides information on local fishing and snowmobiling, and much more! This Saturday, the organization is hosting an an all-day motorcycle riding event that will be dedicated to various charities in the Upper Peninsula that benefit local veterans. The ride will be based out of Gladstone, Michigan, and will span the entire day and include lunch, dinner, and a wide variety of prizes for its participants. For more information on the organization and the charity ride, please visit the UP Cruising website.

That’s all I have for you this week! Stay tuned for next week’s more lengthy post, as I dive into a more detailed article about some of the local hot spots for popular outdoor activities. I hope you all try take advantage of the summer weather, and enjoy the rest of your week! Until next time!


Upcoming Summer Events

Hello Parents,

A photo of Quincy St. in Hancock circa 1890. The Fourth Thursday in History will on May 28 will center around 19th and 20th century photos of Hancock, Michigan. Photo courtesy of ViewsOfThePast.
A photo of Quincy St. in Hancock circa 1890. The Fourth Thursday in History presentation will on May 28 and will center around 19th and 20th century photos of Hancock, Michigan. Photo courtesy of ViewsOfThePast.

I hope you’re all having a great week! It’s been a few weeks since I’ve written to you, and a lot has happened. The “summer weather” still comes and goes (as usual), and Track A is on its way to being halfway complete, and will be by next Wednesday, June 3. It’s hard to believe how fast it goes by; it seems like the summer flies even faster than the school year!

We have a lot of great events coming up this week. On Thursday, May 28 we have a plethora of events taking place. The seventh annual Bike to Work Day will be underway, where local residents are invited to go green and reduce their carbon footprint by riding their bicycle to work rather than driving their vehicles. Rest stops and refreshments booths will be posted along the way in various areas throughout the Copper Country, both in the morning and the evening, so participants may enjoy a light refreshment and conversation with friends on their way to or from work. There will also be information on local bike transportation available so residents can learn more about environmentally friendly ways of travel. This is an awesome local event that celebrates both fitness and environmental health in a fun and enjoyable way. If your students are in Houghton for the summer, I would encourage them to participate by biking to school or work!

In addition, a workshop on driving research will also take place on Thursday. The Michigan Tech Transportation Institute (MTTI) will host a symposium on “Developing Partnership and Advancing Driving Research”. They are inviting all researchers interested in applications and user interfaces for in-vehicle purposes to participate. The workshop is designed to help determine and establish reasonable project ideas and collaborators for each project, determine funding options and logistics for each proposed project, and help create opportunities make the project proposal as competitive as possible. A catered lunch and refreshment reception will be provided. There will also be a demo session of the reserach facilities in the Mind Music Lab Machine the day before and after the event. There will be various guest speakers from all over the country present, including Andrew Kun from the University of New Hampshire, Bruce Walker from Georgia Technological University, Colln Castle from the Michigan Department of Transportation, and more. For more information on the Developing Partnership and Advancing Driving Research workshop, please visit the MTTI website.

Another event taking place this week is the Fourth Thursday in History. Throughout the summer, there will be presentations and symposiums on local and regional history that take place on the fourth Thursday of every month. This month’s Fourth Thursday in History is “Lost in Hancock”. This presentation focuses on early 20th century photographs of the City of Hancock that center around the buildings and structures that are no longer standing. Author John Haeussler will give the presentation and will show his own photographs from his book Hancock. For more information on the Fourth Thursday in History, please visit the Keweenaw Visitors Bureau website.

In addition, The Calumet Players will be performing the beloved story of Anne of Green Gables at the Calumet Theatre from Thursday, May 28 through Saturday, May 30. The story is centered around a young orphan, Anne, who is accidentally sent to an island in Nova Scotia to help an elderly family run their farm. Performances will be at 7:30 pm and tickets cost $12. For more information on the Anne of Green Gables, please visit the Calumet Theatre website.

There is a lot going on this week and weekend, and if your students are up here I hope they take advantage of these opportunities and enjoy the Houghton summer! If you have any questions about any of the above events, or would like to see more information written on a specific topic, please feel free to email me at Have a great remainder to your week! Until next time!



Welcome to Summer!

Hello Parents,

My brother and I at the commencement ceremony on May 2

I hope you’re all having a great week! Now that spring classes are completed and final grades are submitted, summer has officially begun! And with the start of summer comes the start of summer courses, which began last Monday. Students taking courses over the summer take them in an accelerated manner; we cram a typical 14 week course into 7 weeks to provide two summer semesters: Track A and Track B. Track A will extend through June 26 and Track B will begin on June 29. I will continue to write for ParentNet through Track A, but the new ParentNet Weekly writer will begin in Track B.

Spring Commencement took place just over two weeks ago on Saturday, May 2. Over 800 undergraduate students walked during the ceremony, including myself and my twin brother, who graduated with a degree in Civil Engineering (the two of us are pictured). It was a fantastic ceremony with wonderfully eloquent speakers. I hope that those of you who attended thought the same! We were extremely lucky and had delightful weather; the last few commencement ceremonies had less-than-ideal weather, so this year’s families were able to see the Copper Country with its beautiful atmosphere. I hope your own students’ commencement ceremonies are just as great!

Students should have received their final grades for the spring semester. To check final grades, students must log into Banweb. Once logged in, students can click the Students tab → Student Records → Final Grades. When you see the drop down menu, click Spring 2015. As a parent, you may also be able to log onto your student’s account and access this information via Guest Access. Through Guest Access, your student can grant you access to not only their final grades, but you may have access to their electronic bill notification, tuition bill and associated holds, emergency contact information, financial aid awards, an unofficial academic transcript, midterm grades, term end grades, and class schedules. For more information on how to be granted guest access to your student’s account, please visit the Guest Access website or contact the Registrar’s Office.

This summer is filled with excitement as summer courses, campus tours, Summer Youth Programs, and Athletic camps take place throughout the four-month break, before the 2015-2016 academic year begins. Wadsworth Hall is humming with excitement as undergrad students and students from these camps live there throughout the summer. There’s also a lot to look forward to within the local community as well. A plethora of fun summer events such the annual Bridgefest celebration, the Pine Mountain Music Festival, and the SISU Challenge will take place during this time. Many of these special events are local traditions, and I look forward to sharing more information about them as they approach this summer!  For more information on these and other events taking place in the Copper Country this season, please visit the City of Houghton Website.

There’s so much to look forward to this summer and so many activities to explore! As the summer continues, I will write about outdoor activities, local events, and campus happenings that take place throughout the break. If you have any specific questions or would like to see more information written on a specific topic, please feel free to email me at I hope you’re all enjoying the summer in your own hometowns! Until next week!