Letters – Fall/Winter 2014

Dear Editor,

I first read your article “Where’s Dave” in Missouri S&T Magazine during my freshman year in 2009. At that time I was looking for motivation and a direction for my future. Of all the material I had read while searching for my dream career, I found this article to be the most inspiring; I decided I wanted to travel in Dave McCann’s footsteps. My career needed not be with GE, but would simply allow me to interact directly with people of many different cultures while solving technical problems. I still reread the article now and again to remind myself of the end goal. I would like to contact Dave McCann, so if you could point me in the right direction, I would greatly appreciate it.

Evan Carroll, senior in mechanical engineering, Clarence, Mo.

Editor’s note: Dave McCann, ME’79, was featured in the Summer 2009 “Miners Around the World” issue. We forwarded Evan’s note to Dave. Here is his response:


Dear Editor,

Wow! What a nice and unexpected honor to know that my story has provided inspiration for a young person interested in following a similar path in life. Thanks for forwarding his message to me. I will contact Evan directly, and hope that I can provide him with some insights. And just in case you are interested, I retired last year, and have continued to travel and explore new places and cultures. I came back to Jeff City to attend my 40-year high school reunion and celebrate my dad’s 87th birthday, but I just got back from my first-ever trip to Costa Rica, where I spent the month of May sightseeing. My favorite moment was spotting a wild toucan in the trees just above me one afternoon while I was watching the sun set over a little beachside village. Life is good. 🙂

Dave McCann, ME’79, Jefferson City, Mo.


Dear Editor,

I just received the latest issue of Missouri S&T Magazine and while reading through it I noticed that on page 22 in “by the numbers” it says the baseball team has 608 wins since its inception in 1966. I take exception to that because I was part of the first baseball team that played in the spring of 1965. So this year would be the 50th year. We were 6-6 that first year. I even have the school newspaper that mentions that record. I always felt that we didn’t get any recognition for that year and it seems like we’ve been forgotten. I hope you can rectify this error. We would start each practice on the third base line and walk the infield to pick up any rocks on the infield.

Mike Hahn, ME’70, Florissant, Mo.

Editor’s note: You are correct, Mike. The Miners played as an independent team in 1965, one year before joining the MIAA Conference in 1966. We apologize for the error. Thank you for setting us straight.

What is your best spring break memory?

Some college students spend spring break lounging on a beach. Others help rebuild a small town after a natural disaster or trek the Continental Divide. We asked about your favorite spring break experiences. Here is what you told us.

[Read more…]

Tweets

 

What advice would you share with a new S&T student?

 To welcome new students to campus during Opening Week at the start of the school year, we asked upperclassmen and alumni to share advice for new S&T students. Here is what they told us.

“This will be the most impactful four years (or more) of your life. It is a watershed. As an alumnus (retired vice president of a Fortune 500 company) said, “Come to Rolla and change you and your family station in life for generations to come.” Most of us came from modest means. We look back and realize we would not be where we are today if it were not for that decision to come here … and the stick-tu-it-ive-ness to hang in there when it got tough. Best decision I ever made, many of us have said.”
– Bob Stevens, ChE’81, Houston, Texas

“Work hard, make friends, workout, stay safe.”
– Jeff Evans, ME’11, Kansas City, Mo.

“Join a design team. Employers care more about your campus involvement and leadership skills than your GPA. You can be as smart as Sheldon Cooper, but if you don’t demonstrate an ability to work with a team, they won’t hire you. I was hired in largely because of my leadership positions with AAVG (Advanced Aero Vehicle Group).”
– Tim Peters, AE’10, Derby, Kan.

1. Study hard — Most employers have minimum GPA requirements. 2. Get involved — There are plenty of extracurricular activities to choose from (design teams, faith-based groups, res life organizations, etc.) Starting as a freshman will put you in a good position to be in a leadership position your junior or senior year — another thing employers look for. 3. Actively participate in Opening Week — Class, Project X, make some new friends, and don’t forget the evening activities! 4. Make the most of the opportunity — College is your opportunity to try new things, meet new people, build new skills and develop friendships that will last long after you graduate.”
– Gail Lueck, EMgt’02, MS EMgt’03, St. Louis

A note from (Mehmet) Nihat Taner, MS CE’73

It was a long journey from Istanbul. Our plane refueled somewhere near Ireland and then in a small airport in eastern Canada before landing at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. At JFK we learned that we must go to La Guardia Airport for the flight to St. Louis. There was another person, a middle-aged Greek lady who was also going to St. Louis. We all got into a cab and barely made it on time to our flight. From St. Louis, we had to take a Greyhound bus to Rolla. We arrived sometime after midnight, very early on a Sunday morning in August 1972. [Read more…]

Letters to the editor

The article on Ron Epps, Phys’67, was of high interest to me as there were four students from Mount Vernon High School in two consecutive years who were physics majors at (then) UMR – Epps, Nick Prater, Phys’67, Charles Steven Nichols, Phys’68, and myself. This would seem to be exceptional as our high school classes were only about 70 students! We all graduated near the top of our classes at UMR — pretty good record for four country kids from a small high school in southwest Missouri. This was due in no small part to the mentoring we received from Henle Holmes, MS Tch Math’61, our physics and math instructor at Mount Vernon, and then the fine university leadership of Dr. H.Q. Fuller and Dr. John T. Park, who later became chancellor.

I taught math and physics for 11 years and then worked 30-plus years in the oil service industry, retiring in April from Schlumberger as project manager in the area of exploration software development.

—Eugene Aufdembrink, Phys’68, MS Phys’70, Needville, Texas

I earned my master’s degree in December 1973 and we moved on to Montréal, Canada, for my doctorate. Now, 40 years after we left Rolla, I am writing from my hometown of Mersin, Turkey. My wife is a professor in Mersin University. I am director of a manufacturing company and our clientele includes Nooter/Eriksen Inc. It is always nice to find out that some of the people at Nooter were students at Rolla at the same time with me.

Looking back, I can say that we have spent some of our most pleasant days in Rolla and we remember them fondly. Thank you, Rolla. It has been a privilege and honor to be among your students and alumni.

(Mehmet) Nihat Taner, MS CE’73, Mersin, Turkey

I just received my Fall/Winter issue of I and it reminded me of Prof. Kent Peaslee, who presented me with the Benjamin F. Fairless Award at AISTech 2013 in Pittsburgh on May 7, 2013. Prof. Peaslee was president of the Association for Iron and Steel Technology (AIST) and he presented the award at the President’s Breakfast with more than 1,200 people in attendance. I have attached a photo of the presentation. Tragically, Prof. Peaslee suddenly passed away the following week. I thought that you may want to include the photo in an upcoming magazine.

— Bruce Bramfitt, MetE’60, MS MetE’62, PhD MetE’66, Steelton, Pa.

Tweets

https://twitter.com/STEMConnector/status/425991339210457088

https://twitter.com/ozarkswriter/status/425448873700507649

https://twitter.com/kaleykmac/status/407169110041051136

https://twitter.com/GLM1/status/414959058756452352

Q&A: What was your hardest class at S&T?

Maybe it was beneficial and you use the knowledge you gained daily or maybe you’re just glad you survived. Either way, we asked about your hardest class or your toughest professor. Here’s what you told us: [Read more…]

Letters to the editor

I was pleased to see (“On the Right Track,” Summer 2013) that you do not share the Wall Street Journal’s hatred of railroads (and bicycling and walking for that matter). One of my very few professional regrets is following my father’s otherwise excellent advice when I left MSM/UMR/Missouri S&T in 1967. A railroad employee all his working life, he recommended I not consider railroads as a career. For about one decade, the advice looked sound; but as we, and Warren Buffet, know this has changed dramatically. Based on what I saw while riding the “High Line” from Seattle to Minneapolis, It would appear that Travis Duncan, the subject of the article, faces better employment prospects than pipeline engineers.

Paul Marlin, MS CSci’67
Quincy, Ill.

I have an ash tray that I cast in a foundry class in 1959 that the archives might be interested in. It is a testament to the cultural changes that have occurred during the past half-century. At the time, a large number of students smoked and it was a fairly popular item, but it was a poor design. It 
was really too shallow to keep ashes from being blown around, and if you set a cigarette in the notch on the side, the length of the cigarette would contact the bottom of the ash tray and extinguish the cigarette. The other interesting feature is the name cast in the top — “Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy.”

Kudos to Missouri S&T Magazine. It is a great publication. It is amazing the number of women that are mentioned. I graduated in January 1963 and I think the number was around 30 then. 

Ed Kriege, ME’63
Ocean Pines, Md.

Dear Editor,

I am what you might call one of the ol’ timers. I graduated from, as we called it, MSM, way back in 1947. This afternoon, I was sitting in the swing on our front porch in Erwin, Tenn., that is halfway between Flag Pond, Tenn., and Unicoi, Tenn. (now you know where it is!), reading the summer copy of your Missouri S&T Magazine. I enjoyed it very much. You all did an outstanding job. I finished reading it and picked up my copy of the July 15, 2013, National Review. On page 27, I saw an article titled “Blowing up Barbie.” I didn’t think I wanted to read it until I saw “Rolla, Mo.,” under the author’s name. This piqued my interest and I found the article to be very interesting. I don’t know whether or not you have seen it. On the assumption you did not, I have enclosed the article. I found it to be very interesting as it told the story of the Explosives Camp offered at Missouri S&T. Keep up the good work.

Cliff Dameron, MetE’47
Erwin, Tenn.

Tweets