Archives for November 2012

Steven Griffin: Rocket man

Steven Griffin, AE’07, recently told more than 1,000 kids all about rockets during the 2012 USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington, D.C. Griffin is a propulsion engineer with the Weapons and Energetics Department at the Naval Air Warfare Center in China Lake, Calif. “I love talking about rockets with kids,” he says. “Whatmy mom thought was a dangerous hobby turned out to be what I really enjoy doing for a living.”

Other festival participants included Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman of the Discovery Channel’s MythBusters television series, Bill Nye the Science Guy, PayPal co-founder Elon Musk, and Mayim Bialik of The Big Bang Theory.

S&T grad holds important job at the fort

As deputy to the commanding general at Fort Leonard Wood, Rebecca Johnson, CerE’83, PhD EMgt’99, is the post’s highest-ranking civilian. Born in Morocco, Johnson got her early education mostly overseas — until her father retired from the Navy. In addition to her degrees from Missouri S&T, she earned a master’s degree in strategic studies from the U.S. Army War College.

James Head: Ultimate fighter

James Head, PetE’06, likes to challenge his mind and his body. A petroleum engineer by day, Head is also an ultimate fighter in the Ultimate Fighting Championship. He started training while attending Missouri S&T and now holds a purple belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. In April, he won his UFC welterweight debut in Stockholm, Sweden, defeating Papy Abedi.

Run, Rieker, Run

A swimmer in college, Jeff Rieker, CE’99, felt like he was starting to get out of shape. So he started running. Two years later, two pairs of running shoes used, and 20 pounds lighter, Rieker finished his quest to cover every neighborhood street in his Nevada community. When he was done, earlier this year, he had covered approximately 550 miles.

Sigma Nus gather in Springfield, Mo.

A hardy group of Sigma Nu alumni from classes 1947–55 met this summer for the 14th time since 1995 in Springfield, Mo. The four-day gathering included visits to the annual “Watercolor USA 2012” art exhibit at the Springfield Museum. A day trip to Rolla to view the new buildings and state-of-the-art labs proved educational because many hadn’t been there in years.

Thanks to hosts, Bob, CE’53, and Joan Vienhage, for all of their planning and special arrangements.

Attendees included Dick, MinE’51, MS MinE’55, DE MinE’75, and Jan Bullock; Jim Chaney, MinE’48, MS MinE’49; Joe, GGph’54, and Edie Gray; Jack, CE’50, and Denise Guth; Bill Hallett, MetE’55, and Dorothy Walters; Don Johnson, ME’50; Dick Moeller, ME’50, and Maggie Bauer; Joe, MinE’49, and Charlotte Quinn; Joe, ME’49, and Jan Reiss; Lorraine Spackler; Ron, ME’47, and Sondra Tappmeyer; Bruce, MinE’51, and Anita Tarantola; Ed, ChE’50, and Joyce Thielker; Jim, ME’54, and Pat Toutz; Bob, CE’53, and Joan Vienhage; Bob Farris, CerE’55, MS CerE’61; and Herb Lincoln, CE’54.

Wyrick takes position in Morocco

David Wyrick, EMgt’89, recently became dean of the School of Science and Engineering at Al Akhawayn University, an English-language university in Morocco. Previously Wyrick was the Bagley Regents Chair of Engineering at Texas Tech University. He has also served as chair of the department of mechanical and industrial engineering at the University of Minnesota Duluth.

In addition to his current duties in Morocco, Wyrick is president of the American Society for Engineering Management.

Ramsay named top advisor

Chris Ramsay, MetE’83, MS MetE’85, was named Advisor of the Year by Pi Kappa Alpha in 2011. Ramsay has been the chapter advisor to the fraternity at Missouri S&T since 1994. A former professor at S&T, he still teaches classes. He also founded Ramsay Scientific Inc., but he still finds time to be heavily involved with the Pi Kappa Alpha chapter. In addition to providing support to the fraternity members on campus, he attends international conferences and leadership summits. Ramsay is married to Darlene (Meloy) Ramsay, MetE’84, executive director of alumni relations and advancement services at S&T.

Peaslee to lead AIST

Kent Peaslee, PhD MetE’94, the F. Kenneth Iverson Chair of Steelmaking Technology and Curators’ Teaching Professor of metallurgical engineering at Missouri S&T, was appointed president of the Association for Iron and Steelmaking Technology (AIST) for 2012–13.

Leaders promote leadership

Prominent African American business leaders recently launched the Consortium for Leadership Development at an event in St. Louis. Among the key participants were David Price, CE’68, CEO and founder of Birdet Price LLC, and David Steward, founder and chair of World Wide Technology. Price received a professional degree in 1999. Steward is on the UM System Board of Curators.

Elmore leads new S&T department

Cecilia (Gutierrez) Elmore, EMgt’86, was named director of student diversity, outreach and women’s programs. The new department was created by combining the student diversity and pre-college programs office.