Campus President Carolyn Long and the WVU Tech Student Government Association are reaching out to veterans this week in honor of Veterans Day, Tuesday, November 11, 2014.
Tuesday morning, President Long will meet with veterans from within the WVU Tech community for an appreciation breakfast in the Bears Den. During the day, the SGA will host tables in the Engineering Building and the Tech Center where students, faculty and staff can stop by to create cards that will be delivered to the Huntington VA Medical Center in Huntington, West Virginia.
The SGA will sponsor two trips to the hospital one on Wednesday, November 12 and the other on Monday, November 17 to visit with veterans and deliver the cards. Students interested in participating in the visits should email Amy Haddix to reserve a seat on the van. The van will depart from behind Maclin Hall at 3:15 on November 12 and at 2:15 on November 17.
WVU Tech Career Services will host a Nursing Career Fair this Tuesday, November 11 from 11:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. in the second floor hallway of Orndorff Hall.
The fair is open to all students interested in health care career opportunities, including students who are enrolled or who are planning to enroll in WVU Tech’s Nursing or Health Services Administration programs. The event provides students a chance to network with area employers and discover full-time employment and nurse externship opportunities.
Employers include the Charleston Area Medical Center, Princeton Community Hospital, Golden Living of Glasgow, Meadowbrook Nursing Center, Genesis HealthCare and Federal Correctional Institutions.
Students should dress professionally, bring updated resumes and be prepared to talk about themselves and their experience.
WVU Tech’s campus was a flurry of activity on Thursday, November 6, as 900 area students from ten West Virginia counties visited Montgomery for the annual Engineering & Sciences Open House.
The half-day event allowed middle and high school students to visit dozens of presentations conducted by WVU Tech professors and students. Covering fields such as biology, chemistry, mathematics, robotics, physics, computer science and engineering, these presentations offered attendees a chance to see the exciting things STEM students and professionals get to do in their fields.
“Our faculty and students have come up with a series of outstanding, high-end presentations that are well-designed and entertaining. These exercises are a lot of fun for visiting students and they showcase the things that we actually do, the real exercises we get to perform in ours labs every day,” said Dr. Z. Torbica, dean of the Leonard C. Nelson College of Engineering and Sciences at WVU Tech.
Visiting students learned about stream ecology and soil science, how steam turbines and power plants produce electricity and how air conditioning works. They saw a student-built racing buggy, watched a distillation column in action and fired t-shirts and tennis balls from a pressurized air cannon. Students also got a taste of college life on guided campus tours.
“We want students to see that they can study these fields right here, but our motivation goes beyond WVU Tech. It’s a bigger mission to promote STEM in general and help students at these early ages to understand the beauty of STEM fields. If we can open the eyes of a student so that he or she finds something interesting in one of these fields, it may motivate them to seek a four-year degree and eventually make a great scientific contribution later on,” said Torbica.
WVU Tech has hosted the open house in its current form for nearly two decades, and previous versions of the event go back even further. The open house has become so popular that the college had to put a cap on attendance so participants can experience everything the day has to offer.
“This is something that we truly enjoy doing. The feedback we’re getting is wonderful and students are always excited to be here. It’s a tradition we want to continue for a very long time,” said Torbica.
Check out photos from this year’s open house on Flickr .
Join the WVU Tech Student Activities Board and stand-up comedian, Landry, for a night of laughs this Thursday, October 30.
The Canadian born, Atlanta-based comedian employs a “crossover” style of comedy that appeals to a wide range of audiences, and is stopping in Montgomery as part of his current college campus tour.
“He’s so funny and he’s big on the college circuit,” said Emily Sands, Director of Student Activities. “We’re excited to have him on campus. The show is a going to be a great way for students to take a break from studying or doing homework and get out to enjoy something fun.”
Landry’s brand of humor has been recognized in Canada and the United States, where the comedian won the Boston Comedy Festival (2011), captured the title of “Best Male Comic” in the Atlanta Stand Up Awards (2010), and was a finalist in the Great Canadian Laugh Off (2010), the World Series of Comedy (2011) and the Miller Lite Stands Up Competition (2012). He has also appeared on TVONE’s “Bill Bellamy’s Who’s Got Jokes?” and on SiriusXM satellite radio.
Thursday’s show is free and kicks off at 7:30 p.m. in the Tech Center Ballroom.
During the early morning hours of Wednesday, October 29, 2014, there was an off-campus home invasion in Montgomery, where gun shots were fired. Montgomery City Police, Kanawha County Sheriff’s Department and WVU Tech Police quickly contained the situation and took suspects into custody. The investigation continues by the proper law enforcement authorities. This incident did not pose a threat to the safety and security of the University campus. The campus remains open and all classes are in session.
While this incident occurred off campus, it should serve as a reminder to immediately report any suspicious activity to WVU Tech Police at 304-442-3101 or, in the case of an emergency, call 911.
The Student Activities Board will host WVU Tech history professor, Dr. Paul Rakes, for his lecture, “Life’s a Comedy, Not a Tragedy: The Rakes Methodology” on Wednesday, October 29 at 7 p.m. in the Tech Center Ballroom.
Dr. Rakes’ lecture is the third in the SAB’s Last Lecture series at WVU Tech, which asks professors to present their final lecture.
“The idea is that, if this is the last lecture you were ever going to present, what is it that you would want to share with students. It always makes for an interesting lecture, and it gives professors a chance to speak about those things that interest them, things they don’t teach in the classroom,” said Director of Student Activities, Emily Sands.
Colleges and universities have hosted last lecture series for years, and the concept received national attention when Carnegie Mellon University professor, Randy Pausch, gave his last lecture “Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams” in 2007 after a terminal pancreatic cancer diagnosis.
Dr. Rakes was selected by students and the SAB for his varied life experiences, which include his work with a timber crew at the young age of 14, military experience, two decades in the coal industry, a lifetime of traveling and recording with musicians and twenty years of teaching at the college level.
“Dr. Rakes has lived enough lifetimes for three people,” said Sands. “His lecture is an opportunity for students to see that professors don’t spend their whole lives teaching they lead rich lives outside of the classroom, just like students.”
The SAB will serve refreshments at the lecture and a Q&A session will follow Dr. Rakes’ presentation. WVU Tech alumni in the area are encouraged to attend.
AWESOME, the Association for Women Engineers, Scientists, Or Mathematicians Empowerment, is a new WVU Tech student group dedicated to supporting female students in STEM programs and sharing STEM with K-12 schools.
The organization hosted its kickoff Mix & Mingle event on Thursday, October 23 in WVU Tech’s Leonard C. Nelson College of Engineering and Sciences auditorium. At the event, attendees heard from guest speaker, Millie Marshall, President of Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia, Inc., who oversees the company’s manufacturing facility in Buffalo, West Virginia.
Marshall delivered a message of encouragement to students, shared tips for finding success in the workplace and charged AWESOME members with helping to change the culture around gender roles in STEM fields.
“I was fortunate to grow up in a family where I never felt like I couldn’t do everything I wanted to do,” said Marshall. “But there are perceptions that need to change from an overall cultural perspective. We’ve got to combat the image that engineering or manufacturing is your grandfather’s job, and the first step is to get students interested in STEM at a young age.”
Dr. Stephany Coffman-Wolph, AWESOME faculty advisor and professor in the WVU Tech department of Computer Sciences and information Systems, said the group will give members a chance to take that challenge to the classroom by participating in outreach programs that get young students interested in pursuing these important fields.
“We need to pull them at those early, early ages and get the students involved during the outreach, before they have been influenced, before someone has said to them ‘you can’t do that.’ We want to get them before that so that we can say ‘hey, you can do this,’” she said.
In addition to outreach, the organization will allow members to participate in networking events, STEM conferences and mentorships with faculty and industry professionals.
Kristie Tran, WVU Tech mechanical engineering major and Vice President of AWESOME, said the group is much more than a just a girls’ club.
“It’s a space for all the women in STEM to get together, to talk with each other, to encourage each other just to know that someone’s there with you, and you’re not alone,” she said.
On Thursday, October 23, join the WVU Tech Sports Studies Club as they bring together players, coaches and fans for “Tech Madness,” the 2014 Winter Sports Kickoff in the Neal D. Baisi Athletic Center.
The kickoff will feature WVU Tech’s men’s and women’s basketball programs, introduce new WVU Tech coaches, honor the men’s soccer team for their 2013 USCAA National Championship victory, recognize distinguished wrestlers and the women’s soccer team, and honor Bob Williams, WVU Tech men’s basketball Head Coach.
“This event is a great way to promote awareness of our athletic activities and events,” said Sports Studies Club faculty advisor, Dr. Rachael Alley. “This is a big event for the club, and a great opportunity for students and the community to come out and show their support.”
Attendees will also watch a men’s basketball dunk contest featuring guest judges from WVU Tech, and fans will be able to compete in half-court and three-point shot contests, participate in a relay race and sign up for chances to win WVU Tech gear. Guests wearing pink will be entered for a chance to win a Nike Elite backpack.
“It’s going to be a fun, light evening for students to spend time with our athletes and one another,” said Aquila Fox, WVU Tech Sports Studies Club President. “Our athletes work so hard to compete at their best level and it means the world when they receive support from the WVU Tech community.”
Doors open at 8 p.m. and the Kickoff is open to students, faculty, staff and the general public.
Students interested in getting involved with the WVU Tech Sports Studies Club, which allows members to network within their industry and participate in a variety of events throughout the year, can contact Fox for more information.
The WVU Tech chapter of the Association for Computing Machinery will host TechLAN this Saturday and Sunday, October 25-26 in the Tech Center Ballroom. The LAN party allows gamers to join one another on a local network to play games, compete in tournaments, meet fellow gamers and win prizes.
“The LAN party is a great way to socialize with people from the school and the surrounding community. You get to play great games while meeting a variety of people,” said WVU Tech ACM President, Richard Murdock.
Participants are welcome to play any game they choose, though there will be scheduled tournaments for select games. Early event activities, starting Friday, October 24, include early registration and setup, a FIFA 15 console tournament (ACM provides hardware and games) and a costume contest.
“While most modern games allow people to play online, there’s something more meaningful and memorable about playing these games together in person. A student who has never attended a LAN party will see a ton of people playing computer and console games together. It’s quite an incredible sight,” said Dr. Matthew Williamson, Assistant Professor of Computer Science and Information Systems.
Participating students will need to bring a desktop or laptop computer (it doesn’t need to be the best or the most expensive just capable of playing games), with gaming software already installed and adequate anti-virus software. For more information, visit TechLAN’s rules page or the N00b guide.
Students can register for TechLAN at www.lanville.org. General admission is $10 and bonus packages run from $15-$40 depending on selected options such as early equipment set-up, dual monitor use, pizza packages and chances at better prizes. Attendees are guaranteed to win a raffle prize, which include computer hardware, accessories and unique items. Visit the ACM store page for more info.
Dr. Williamson said that TechLAN is also an excellent opportunity for students to learn more about the ACM, which hosts a variety of events throughout the year.
“ACM provides students opportunities for advancing their interest in computer science,” he said. “One key event is the regional programming competition, where our students test their problem-solving skills against some of the top schools in the nation.”
“ACM also hosts several events that bring together people who have a similar interest in computing. Through these events, students get to learn new aspects of computing they may not be able to see in the classroom.”
Any student can join the ACM, regardless of major, and interested students can speak with any of the group’s officers: Richard Murdock, Thomas Baker, Michael Sansone or Josh Sizemore.
For WVU Tech students like Murdock, the ACM is much more than a group of computer fans.
“Joining the ACM is like becoming part of a family, if someone in the organization is struggling, there is a person there that will be able to make sure they get the help they need,” he said.
TechLAN is sponsored by WVU Tech, AMG Network Hosting, Fast Signs, Rival Cards and Games, AFK Games, GameStop and Foodland.
In an annual tradition of honoring distinguished alumni, WVU Tech has announced Dr. Aaron Morris and Sarah “Sally” Smith as 2014 Alumni of the Year, and will induct Doug Epling, Dameion Mills, Mike Morrison, Dr. Leonard C. Nelson and Ronnie Rice into the WVU Tech Athletic Hall of Fame.
WVU Tech has honored Alumni of the Year since 1949. Honorees are selected for their recognition and successful stature in their chosen profession, a strong dedication to their communities and a commitment to serving as role models for all WVU Tech alumni.
Aaron Morris, Ph.D., ‘01, is a roboticist, author of 17 publications, co-inventor of four patents and successful tech entrepreneur. Morris works in the Reality Solutions group at 3D design software company, Autodesk, which purchased Morris’ tech startup, Allpoint Systems, in 2012. He graduated from WVU Tech summa cum laude with a double major in computer science and electrical engineering. He holds a doctorate from the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University.
Sarah E. “Sally” Smith, J.D., is a partner in the Charleston office of Bowles Rice LLP. She is a member of the WVU Tech Board of Visitors and the Charleston Area Alliance Board of Directors. Smith has served on a variety of economic, educational and legal boards, and by gubernatorial appointment on the Kanawha County Correctional Officers Civil Service Commission. She has been recognized by Best Lawyers in America and as a Bar Foundation Fellow. Smith graduated summa cum laude from WVU Tech and earned her J.D. at the WVU College of Law.
The WVU Tech Athletic Hall of Fame has been honoring notable athletes, coaches, administrators and contributors since 1956, and will add five new names to the Kelley Hall of Fame Room wall:
Douglas Epling has contributed to WVU Tech athletics for two decades. Owner of Mountain Edge Mining, Legacy Resources and Hanover Resources, Epling has served as the West Virginia State Boxing Commissioner, Chairman of the Beckley Police Commission, board member of the West Virginia Parkways Authority and a Board of Visitors member at WVU Tech. WVU Tech’s baseball program currently uses the Douglas M. Epling Stadium in East Bank, West Virginia.
Damieon D. Mills, ‘02, was a WVU Tech wide receiver and quarterback from 2000-2002, where he was an all-conference player both years and currently stands third on the school’s all-time receiving list. In the early 2000s, Mills served as a receivers coach and special teams coordinator at WVU Tech. He is currently the head basketball coach at North Central High School in Opelousas, Louisiana.
Mike Morrison, ‘64, played tight end/ defensive end at WVU Tech from 1960-1964, where he served as team co-captain and earned SIGMA EP all-American tight end accolades. Morrison’s coaching career includes football, wrestling and track in Ohio and West Virginia. He eventually went on to serve as Fayette County’s athletic director.
Dr. Leonard C. Nelson served as the president of then West Virginia Institute of Technology for 25 years and is the namesake of the WVU Tech College of Engineering and Sciences. The University’s longest-standing president, Nelson was a member of several prestigious national honor societies. As president, Dr. Nelson supported the efforts of noted basketball coach, Neal D. Baisi, who led a nationally recognized team in the 50s and 60s, and from whom WVU Tech’s athletics center gets its name.
Ronald K. Rice, ‘59, played baseball at WVU Tech from 1955-1959 where he batted over .300 each year. He also kicked for the WVU Tech football team in his senior year. Rice’s football coaching career took him high schools in West Virginia, Ohio and Virginia until he accepted an assistant coaching position for the University of Maryland football team in 1970.
WVU Tech will host a reception and dinner to honor these alumni on Friday, November 14 at the WVU Tech campus in Montgomery. Tickets can be purchased by calling 304.442.1025 or e-mailing Tech-Homecoming@mail.wvu.edu.