IGERT trainees and associates from Michigan Technological University and Southern University and A&M College met to share their research and experience as IGERT students.
The agenda included an appetizer reception, a one-day tour of the scenic Keweenaw Peninsula, and a picnic dinner. On the following day the work started with a collaboration groups update, then a discussion of the SF1, SF2, SF Colloquium and Certificate in Sustainability. Next were student presentations about their research, and afterwards there was an assessment of IGERT. "Being involved in IGERT has provided me with a multidisciplinary (some call it metadisciplinary) perspective on one of the greatest challenges we face globally--sustainability," said Margot Hutchins, an IGERT trainee and graduate student in mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics. "I think this will be useful because it allows me to better understand the assumptions and arguments of people from a variety of disciplines, communicate with them and, hopefully, bring them together to address complex problems."
Donna Michalek, assistant provost and associate professor of mechanical engineering-engineering mechanics, is an IGERT advisor. "It is very rewarding advising and working with the IGERT graduate students at both campuses," she said. "The program places many challenges before the students, and they not only meet them but also challenge the faculty by requiring us to go beyond our individual comfort zones."