Lake Superior State University
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Ben Mitchell

Ben Mitchell
Mechanical Engineering '06

Ben Mitchell grew up in a devout household in the central Upper Peninsula of Michigan where emphasis was placed on helping others. He traveled with his father to places such as Kenya and Peru on short-term medical missions. When he was in Kenya, a missionary explained that engineers have the greatest potential to influence the largest number of people. During high school, Ben participated in a youth mission trip to Tijuana. A result of the mission trips, his family decided to adopt three Vietnamese children when he was a junior.

All of these experiences had a great influence on Ben’s outlook on life. He decided to major in mechanical engineering and enrolled at Lake Superior State University. Near the end of his senior year, he decided to volunteer for the Peace Corps to help others.

His two-year commitment began in the fall of 2007 and took Ben to Burkina Faso in western Africa. He resides in the village of Tansila, population 3,000, approximately 10 km from the Mali border. His host organization is the local cotton growers union. It works cooperatively with other villages to improve and expand their production techniques. He serves as an agribusiness advisor as a part of the Small Enterprise Development program which helps create market linkages and assists with the advancement of business skills.

Office of the President

Past Presidents: The Crawford Years, 1953-1965 Harry L. Crawford

The fight for the Branch’s survival, a familiar refrain in the legislature continued each year. Relations with Michigan Tech’s Board of Control were also tenuous until Judge James J. Fenlon of Sault Ste. Marie was appointed to that board in 1957. A staunch supporter of the Branch, Fenlon was the driving force in the establishment of four-year programs in Sault Ste. Marie.

On August 25, 1953, Harry L. Crawford was named resident director, having served as branch registrar since 1946. In keeping with Michigan Tech tradition, Mr. Crawford was educated as an electrical engineer.

During the Crawford years the athletic programs expanded and excelled. “Bud” Cooper, a Soo Tech alumnus and athlete, returned as basketball coach and during his tenure, 1953-1960, compiled a remarkable 100-win, 32-loss record.

The fight for the Branch’s survival, a familiar refrain in the legislature continued each year. Relations with Michigan Tech’s Board of Control were also tenuous until Judge James J. Fenlon of Sault Ste. Marie was appointed to that board in 1957. A staunch supporter of the Branch, Fenlon was the driving force in the establishment of four-year programs in Sault Ste. Marie.

Engineering technology degree programs were introduced to the Sault Branch in 1961. Those programs would become some of the most successful of its offerings.

A planning committee at Michigan Tech advocated adding baccalaureate programs at the Sault Branch. Judge Fenlon, Dr. Kenneth Shouldice, Director of War Memorial Hospital and representing the Sault Chamber of Commerce, and others finally succeeded. The Chamber under Dr. Shouldice’s leadership also spearheaded an effort to raise $220,000 to build a girl’s dormitory.

A new science and classroom building, the first such construction on campus, opened in 1964. Later named in honor of Harry L. Crawford, the building still serves today’s students.

Professor Crawford, Director of the Sault Branch since 1953, announced his retirement effective July 31, 1965.

 

Personal education...

Caroline Demary-Elliott

Caroline Demary-Elliott
Mathematics - Secondary Education

"Not only is LSSU close and convenient to my home in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, but the atmosphere is very welcoming. All of the staff and students seem to be really open, and the teacher-to-student ratio is very personal, unlike larger universities." [ more ]

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