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.
People come to the Lake Superior State University for all sorts of reasons and from many different backgrounds. The one thing they all have in common is taking the next big step--college life, and we here at Lake State strive to make that step as manageable as possible.
To help ensure students are able to excel at Lake State we require our Freshmen and Sophomore students to live on-campus (see policy). By doing this, the transition from home life to student life is much less stressful and allows the student to concentrate on college life.
One of the lesser known benefits of attending Lake State is the ability to choose a residence that best suits your needs. We have traditional dorms to apartments to townhouses. As our students grow and mature, so does their on-campus housing opportunities.
Living on campus is an important part of the college experience. The transition from living at home to living on your own can be a stressful one, and LSSU has created a support network to help students overcome any obstacles they may face during this time.
There are many advantages to living on campus and they include:
Not having to commute
No utilities to worry about
A support network of advisors and staff to assure that your needs and concerns are met
The ability to gain independence by creating your own schedule and managing your time
Every student having their own work-station
Internet accessibility in every room, and if you don’t have a computer the library is close and convenient.
A friendly staff of resident advisors
LSSU has a variety of housing options available. On-campus living options include traditional residence halls, suites, furnished apartments, two-story townhouses and historic houses. Each wired for cable and high-speed internet.
Brady Hall is home to freshman and sophomore male students. This residence hall offers private, two-person, and four person fully-furnished rooms.
Osborn Hall is home to freshman and sophomore female students. This residence hall offers private and two-person rooms.
Upperclassmen occupy the Townhouses. These are fully-furnished two-level apartments that include two bedrooms, private bath, cooking and laundry facilities.
Our one-, two-, and three-bedroom apartments are reserved for single, upper-class students.
The Student Village is primarily for students of sophomore status. It is a co-ed unit containing 36 suites consisting of four bedrooms, a commons area and a bathroom. The Village alternates male and female floors.
Note: Unmarried students enrolled for 12 or more credit hours and who are within 27 calendar moths of their graduation from high school at the beginning of the academic year (for this purpose, high school graduation dates are assumed to be June 1st) must reside in a University residence hall.
The exceptions are:
if you live with parents within a 60 mile radius, of the three-county (Luce, Chippewa, and Mackinac) service are of the University campus. An exception application, available in the Housing Office, must be approved by the Housing director.
if you are exempted in writing by the Housing director when residence hall space is filled.
if you face unusual financial or health problems and are exempted by the Director of Housing and Residential Life.
Questions and Concerns Regarding Campus Housing
Is it possible to study while living with so many people?
Community living can be a challenge, but all of the students who live on campus go through an application process and we try to place students with similar study habits. If your roommate has similar study habits, then you probably won’t have to worry about not getting your studying done in your room. If you’re worried about noise outside of your room, LSSU sets apart certain areas of the dorms as quiet wings and you can request to be placed there.
Is it possible to get my own room?
Most students who come to Lake State do share a room with at least one other student, but upon request single rooms are available, but usually at a greater cost.
I have a friend who already attends Lake State , is there any way that I can share a room with them?
Upon request you can live with your friends. There are words of caution though, make sure that you both have similar living habits, because sometimes best friends do not make the best roommates.
I’m a private person, if I live on campus do I have to participate in all Housing Activities, or will people leave me alone?
No one from Lake State will make you participate in anything. If you need time alone, you’ve got it. If you feel as though you are feeling pressured to participate then talk to your resident advisor and they will help to make sure that any problem you may have is addressed and taken care of.
When comparing Lake State to other, larger universities, we continually strive to meet the individual needs of our students.
What made Rachel's Lake Superior State experience so unique was the practical research she did with top-notch faculty.
"I really enjoyed working with environmental chemistry professor Judy Westrick and biologist Deb Stai," Rachel says. "For my senior project, we evaluated a lab method for cultivating a fungus that causes infections in humans."