Category: News

Michigan Tech AFROTC Cadets Selected for Competitive Training

Ten Michigan Tech AFROTC Detachment 400 cadets in their second and third academic years competed in a national selection board to attend the annual summer field training encampment at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama. They competed against all other 144 AFROTC detachments in the nation for limited slots, and all ten cadets were selected—a rare honor for any AFROTC detachment.

This year’s selectees are: Horatio Babcock, Micah Ball, Jacob Carley, Adam Cottrell, Caleb Dann, Reed Deemer, Cy DeLeeuw, Nicholas Fisher, Brian Nance and Logan Sheffield.

Each will attend one of five four-week encampments throughout the coming summer. Their training will include leadership and followership skills, problem-solving, time management, decision-making under pressure, teamwork, marksmanship, physical fitness, drill and ceremony, military ethos and knowledge, confidence building, cultural competency, survival skills and operating in austere deployment environments.

These ten cadets have been preparing all spring semester in an intense training program led by AFROTC cadet trainers Nicholas Grygleski and Jacob Ahles. This is a significant milestone in AFROTC; attendance is required to proceed in the program and become a commissioned officer in the Air Force. The ten cadets will return next fall to become the new cadet leadership in the 400th Cadet Wing here at Michigan Tech AFROTC. The Det 400 cadre and staff are immensely proud and eager to see them in action when they return.

From Tech Today, by Major Jason Engler, Department of Aerospace Studies.


Central Michigan University’s Doctor of Physical Therapy Program, in Partnership with Michigan Tech, Discussed During Benishek Visit

Jason Carter Benishek
Jason Carter (left) with U.S. Rep. Dan Benishek.

During a recent visit by U.S. Rep. Dan Benishek, a tour of the Advanced Technology and Development Center was arranged to discuss the doctor of physical therapy program coordinated between Michigan Tech and Central Michigan University (CMU). Dr. Jason Carter, Chair of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology, met with Dan Benishek in person while CMU was represented via videoconference.

Benishek visits Copper Country

Benishek said, “Many of the local hospitals contributed to the creation of this facility so that they would have students training here in Northern Michigan and know what Northern Michigan is like, grow to love the area and be able to have more of those people stay here in Northern Michigan and work here and provide for the care of the people living here.”

Read more at ABC 10 News, by Mike Hoey. WATCH THE VIDEO

Benishek pays visit to Michigan Tech

The program shares CMU faculty with Tech and gives undergrads at Tech access to CMU’s Doctor of Physical Therapy program.

“We have a cohort of 12 students per year that enroll into that program and graduate with a doctorate in physical therapy from Central Michigan, and hopefully stay here in our Upper Peninsula to become physical therapists.” said Jason Carter, Department Chair of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology.

Read more at Upper Michigan’s Source, by Nick Brennan. WATCH THE VIDEO

Benishek Tours U.P.

Tuesday began with a tour of the Doctor of Physical Therapy space at the Advanced Technology Development Center on the campus of Michigan Tech.

Read more and listen to the audio interview at The Keweenaw Report.

Benishek pays a visit

Carter said both universities have given their full support to the program.

“I think it’s a great example of universities being more efficient with resources,” he said.

During Tuesday’s stop, Benishek and Carter talked via videoconference with program head Pete Loubert and professor Tim Zipple.

Read more at the Mining Gazette, by Garrett Neese.


Linda Ott appointed Associate Dean in CSA

Linda Ott
Linda Ott

The College of Sciences and Arts is very pleased to announce the appointment of Linda Ott as associate dean for special initiatives, focusing on diversity in computing. Ott’s appointment signals a renewed effort to increase the diversity of students in computing and information. The under-representation of women and ethnic minorities has been little affected by significant national efforts to introduce changes—indeed, there has been some backsliding on earlier gains.

National attention for the difficulties came from recent attention to the poor record of largest firms in Silicon Valley in recruiting and retaining women in these firms. Michigan Tech, like many universities, has worked steadily to increase the number of women enrolled in computer science, software engineering and computer engineering, but the five-year average enrollment of women stands at only 7.5 percent of the total student population in computer-related degree programs. Morevoer the situation has changed only a little since 2009. Clearly, progress is elusive.

Ott’s appointment will bring much more energy to efforts to recruit a more diverse population of students into computing fields. Bruce Seely, dean of the college, notes how the appointment builds off Ott’s long-standing commitment to addressing the lack of diversity in the field. Over the past two years, Linda led the effort to bring Michigan Tech into the Pacesetters progam of the National Center for Women in Information Technology (NCWIT). And for a much longer time she has engaged in activities with the Summer Youth Program and other outreach efforts at the state-level to raise the awareness of female students concerning the opportunity in computing. Seely noted that “Linda is perfectly positioned to explore and help implement ways to bring more students from diverse backgrounds to campus. This is her true passion.” She will continue these programmatic efforts and outreach initiatives while also studying the lower retention and persistence rates for all students—not just women—pursuing Tech degrees in computer science, computer engineering, network and systems administration and software engineering. In addition, she will compare and benchmark Tech’s efforts against other schools and national patterns, understand the retention of students in computing-related fields and seek external funding to support programs to address these issues.

Because many groups on campus are working on these questions, Ott will collaborate with different groups on campus, including academic departments, schools and colleges, admissions, development, alumni relations, the Center for Diversity and Inclusion and WISE.

By allowing her to devote all of her time and effort to these tasks, Seely added, he hopes Michigan Tech can make real progress on diversity. “I am thrilled Linda is going to devote her time and energy to these important and challenging problems.”

She will begin her efforts Monday, March 16.

From Tech Today, by College of Sciences and Arts.

Tech appoints Ott as Associate Dean for Special Initiatives

Though the job title may be new, Linda Ott, Associate Dean for Special Initiatives in the College of Sciences and Arts at Michigan Technological University, is no stranger to promoting diversity in computer-related programs.

Read more at the Mining Gazette, by Meghan Marquardt (subscription required).


Dean’s Teaching Showcase: Scott Kuhl

Scott Kuhl
Scott Kuhl

The Dean’s Teaching Showcase nominee for this week comes from the College of Sciences and Arts. Dean Bruce Seely has chosen to recognize Scott Kuhl, an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science with an adjunct appointment in Cognitive and Learning Sciences. Dean Seely values “what Scott Kuhl attempts to accomplish as a teacher mainly for the mindset he employs, and less for the specific teaching techniques has adopted.” He notes that Scott “does not differentiate between regular classes, summer youth and support for Enterprise activities as educational venues—but approaches all with the goal of creating a fun and motivating environment.”

In his more traditional courses, Scott does attribute his teaching success to specific techniques, like providing detailed assignment descriptions with numerous tips to “help get students going in the right direction.” He also provides numerous examples, some of which he walks through in class in detail, and encourages students to share additional examples with each other. Finally, he emphasizes prompt feedback for his students. He has accomplished this by creating an automatic grading program which provides a “provides a transparent, well-defined set of expectations for assignments” and a score that can be adjusted by an instructor or grader as necessary. He’s even willing to share this tool with those interested.

Kuhl is also focused on continual improvement. Though the Husky Game Development (HGD) Enterprise he leads is focused on games, he attributes its dramatic growth under his leadership to a careful cycle of feedback, change and evaluation. He sees the value of interdisciplinary teamwork, communication, development and management for students in HGD, and has led the group in both publishing academic papers and receiving sponsorship from both Chrysler and the Department of Labor.

Scott will be formally recognized with the 11 other Dean’s Teaching Showcase nominees at a luncheon near the end of spring term. Please join Dean Seely, computer science chair Min Song and the Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning in thanking Scott for his outstanding contributions to the teaching mission of the College of Sciences and Arts.

From Tech Today, by Mike Meyer, director, William G. Jackson CTL.


SURF Proposal Workshop

Will Cantrell, coordinator for the Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program, will conduct a workshop for students on the SURF application process, including writing an effective SURF proposal. The workshop will take place on Wednesday, Dec. 3, at 6:30 p.m. in Fisher 127.

Faculty and staff are encouraged to notify students interested in applying for SURF funding to attend. For more information, see the SURF online information page.

The deadline for SURF applications is noon on Friday, Jan. 30, 2015.

From Tech Today.


New Memorial Wall Honors Fallen Michigan Tech Veterans

War Memorial WallMichigan Technological University has had a War Memorial Wall ever since its Memorial Union Building was dedicated in May 1952, but it only named those lost during World War II and the Korean conflict.

Michigan Tech’s Army and Air Force ROTC, the Student Veterans Association, American Legion Chaplain Paul Nelson, and Matrosic himself, a retired Army lieutenant colonel, participated in the ceremonies.

Read more at Michigan Tech News, by Jennifer Donovan.


New Faculty for Fall 2014

The College of Sciences and Arts welcomes new faculty and congratulates existing faculty who have now accepted tenure-track and lecturer positions.

For more about new faculty, see the PowerPoint slides presented at the New Faculty Orientation.

Biological Sciences
Ebenezer Tumban, PhD

Chemistry
Xiaohu Xia, PhD

Cognitive and Learning Sciences
Amy Lark, PhD

Humanities
Leyre Alegre-Figuero, MA
Carlos Amador, PhD
Sara Amani, PhD
Andrew Fiss, PhD
Dana Van Kooy, PhD
Marcelino Viera-Ramos, PhD
Audrey Viguier, PhD

Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology
Steven Elmer, PhD

Mathematical Sciences
Seokwoo Choi, PhD
Cecile Piret, PhD
Yeonwoo Rho, PhD

Physics
Jae Yong Suh, PhD

Social Sciences
Donald Lafreniere, PhD

Visual and Performing Arts
Lisa Johnson, MFA

Read more at Tech Today.


Provost Max Seel to Return to the Faculty

Max Seel
Max Seel

Provost Max Seel has announced that he will be returning to the faculty as soon as a successor is found and can begin work. Seel has served as Michigan Tech’s provost since February 2010.

“Max has done an outstanding job as provost during what is arguably a tipping point for Michigan Tech,” said President Glenn Mroz. “Well over half the tenured and tenure-track faculty have been hired on his watch, and working with the deans, chairs, exec team, Board of Control and Senate, he’s moved the University toward our long-range goal and vision.”

Read more at Tech Today, by Jenn Donovan, director of news and media relations.