Tech Celebrates World Usability Day

World Usability Day 2012The Human Interface Design Enterprise was showing off their driver simulator. It was one of a couple of major projects the group has taken on, according to Margo Woller-Carter, a PhD student in applied cognitive science and human factors. The Human Interface Design Enterprise is advised by Bob Pastel, associate professor in computer science.

Elsewhere, Harriet King discussed her master’s thesis in computer science, which focuses on two categories of daily computer users: those who know just enough (JE) to get their work done and those who are much more proficient and comfortable in their work (intrinsic). It was the focus of her poster presentation at the library. King is advised by Charles Wallace, interim chair of CS, and she received additional guidance from Karla Kitalong from humanities and Bob Pastel from CS.

Read more at Tech Today, by Dennis Walikainen.


Bob Mark Elevator Pitch Competition:That’s Entertainment (and Ingenuity)

Elevator Pitch 2012Winning first prize and $1,000 was MyPaar (My Love), a dating website for India, created by physics PhD student Abhi Kantamneni.

At the Fourth Annual Bob Mark Elevator Pitch Competition at Michigan Technological University, more than 20 teams made their best pitches promoting ideas for new businesses, and the judges had some hard choices to make. The contest emulates an elevator ride with a potential investor, and this year featured sound effects, dramatic lighting and entertainment.

Read more at Michigan Tech News, by Dennis Walikainen.


8th Annual Northern Lights Film Festival

Northern Lights Film Festival 2012The Eighth Annual Northern Lights Film Festival will be held November 1-3 at the McArdle Theatre on the Michigan Technological University campus. This year’s festival brings recent award-winning independent films and filmmakers to the campus and surrounding community.

The Northern Lights Film Festival is sponsored by the departments of Humanities and Visual and Performing Arts, Cin/Optic Communication and Media Enterprise Team and PANK.


CLS and KIP at Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Meeting

HFES Annual MeetingFaculty and students attended the 56th Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society last week in Boston.

Attending were faculty and graduate students from the Department of Cognitive and Learning Sciences (CLS) and the Department of Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology (KIP). The contributed to oral presentations, a discussion panel, and poster presentations.

Read more at Tech Today.


Go West, Young Microbiologist

Mosquito“Yuritzi went out of her comfort zone when she joined my chemical engineering research lab, even though she is a biological science major,” Caryn Heldt says. “My lab is biochemistry focused, so her expertise fit well. She has added depth to my lab, and I have enjoyed working with her.”

“I am really excited that Yuritzi was able to present her research results at SACNAS,” Sue Bagley added. “This is a premier venue. Hopefully other Michigan Tech students will be inspired to the same in the future.”

Read more at Tech Today, by Dennis Walikainen.


Bruce Seely Presents on NSF GRFP

NSFNoon to 12:50 pm, Thursday, October 18, in the Pat Nelson Graduate Conference Center on the fourth floor of the Administration Building. Dr. Seely’s presentation is entitled “How to Write Exceptional NSF GRFP Letters of Recommendation.” He will discuss tips for writing exceptional letters that result in funding for graduate students.

Read more at Tech Today.

Seminar Addresses “Letters of Recommendation”

The session is open to all faculty interested in learning tips about writing great (good is often not good enough) letters of recommendation for competitive fellowship, scholarship or graduate school opportunities.

Read more at Tech Today.


Michigan Tech Supports National “Commitment to the Future”

APLUNearly 490 public colleges and universities, including Michigan Tech, have signed a “Commitment to the Future,” pledging to increase the number of baccalaureate degrees by 3.8 million by 2025. That is a 60 percent increase over the number of bachelor’s degrees granted now.

The commitment, released at a national news conference on Oct. 2, includes pledges to reduce the time it takes to earn a degree, enhance academic quality and contain the cost per student of a college education. The initiative is led by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU).

Read more at Tech Today, by Jennifer Donovan.


Successful Program in Calculus

Calculus ProgramMichigan Tech has been identified by the Mathematical Association of America’s National Science Foundation project, “Characteristics of Successful Programs in College Calculus,” as having one of the best calculus programs in the country.

During the initial phase, the researchers evaluated more than 200 college-level calculus programs in the US. In the second phase, which begins this fall, teams will visit the eight top programs, including Michigan Tech’s, to learn about what makes them successful.

More information about the project is available at
Characteristics of Successful Programs in College Calculus” .


Technical Communication Scholars to Converge on Tech

Technical CommunicationMichigan Tech is hosting the 40th Annual Meeting of the Council for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication (CPTSC) Thursday to Saturday, September 27 to 29. It is one of the largest international meetings of its kind, according to Ron Strickland, chair of the humanities department, and it brings many benefits with it.

Strickland said the annual meeting is also a chance to showcase the University’s humanities programs, faculty, and facilities. The humanities department will set up a couple of tables to present their publications and grants, one focusing on technical communication.

Read more at Tech Today, by Dennis Walikainen.