Tag Archives: Rochester

OptimizeRx Names New Board Chair; Founding CEO To Retire

ROCHESTER — OptimizeRx Corp. (OTCQB:OPRX), an aggregator of pharmaceutical-sponsored services in electronic health records, appointed company director Gus D. Halas as chairman of the board, effective June 30. He will succeed retiring chairman and company founder, David Harrell.

As the company’s CEO until February of last year, Harrell created the first technology and network to automate customized copay savings and other patient support directly within doctors’ existing electronic prescribing workflow.

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AT&T Brings Faster Network to More Than 100 Michigan Sites

DETROIT — AT&T Inc. has activated upgrades to bring faster speeds to nearly 100 cell sites around the state.

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AT&T Expands 4G LTE In Five Michigan Counties

DETROIT — AT&T Inc. announced expansions of its fast 4G LTE data network in five Michigan counties.

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Michigan’s Future City Champs Win Third Place at National Finals

WASHINGTON, D.C. —  A city of the future called “Egabrag,” engineered by students from  St. John Lutheran School in Rochester, took third place Tuesday at the 2016 Future City National Competition.

Three presenting students — Emily Abramczyk, Emma Scharfenberg and Leah Schroeder — teamed with teacher Jon Pfund and volunteer mentor Linda Gerhardt, PhD, a chemical engineer at General Motors, to earn the prize.

St. John Lutheran School receives a $2,000 scholarship for its STEM program, sponsored by IEEE-USA.

The team also won two special awards after three hours of judging on Sunday — best virtual city design and best use of innovative construction materials and techniques.

The St. John team won the ESD Michigan Regional Future City Competition — their sixth straight state title — in a daylong event held Jan. 25 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi.

Earlier versions of the St. John team won the national championship in 2014 and 2015.

Since last fall, 40,000 middle school students from 1,300 schools have been engaged in the 2015-16 Future City Competition. This year’s challenge: Waste Not, Want Not, challenged students to design waste management and recycling systems of the future.

Teams from 37 middle schools and organizations, each a winner of intense regional competitions held throughout January, participated in the Future City National Finals, which took place Feb. 13 – 17 at the Capital Hilton in Washington, DC as part of National Engineers Week.

During the Future City Competition, students work as a team to design a virtual city using SimCity software. They research a city-wide issue and write an essay with their findings and solutions. They build a tabletop scale model of their city using recycled materials costing no more than $100 and they write a brief narrative promoting their city.

ESD organizes the Michigan regional competition, recruiting more than 200 engineering and technical professionals to serve as team mentors and judges.

To learn more about the ESD Michigan Regional Future City Competition, click here, or contact Allison Marrs at amarrs@esd.org or 248-353-0735, ext. 121.

The St. John team is pictured above with its third place trophy.

ESD Kicks Off Student Chapters At Oakland U, UM-Ann Arbor

SOUTHFIELD — The Engineering Society of Detroit launched two more student chapters at the University of Michigan’s main campus in Ann Arbor and at Oakland University in Rochester.

Over a pizza dinner at UM and a pizza lunch at OU, students learned about ESD’s professional development, networking and leadership development programs, as well as its member discount programs.

They also learned about mentoring opportunities for college students at ESD’s Future City Michigan Regional Competition for sixth through eighth graders, and at its SMArT Michigan energy efficient home design contest for high school students.

And, ESD executive director Robert Magee pledged to help college engineering students with the “21st century soft skills” they need to succeed, from resume writing to interviewing skills. And he said ESD’s 120-plus corporate members stand ready to help members of ESD college chapters with internship and co-op opportunities.

Magee pointed out at both schools that Michigan has more engineers per capital than any other state, making it the nation’s engineering capital. He said ESD’s goal is to make sure that No. 1 ranking continues.

And there’s a huge shortage of engineers in Michigan today. ESD’s last job fair had more than 50 companies exhibiting, offering more than 3,000 jobs — and only about 300 people attended. And economic researchers show thousands of engineering job openings going unfilled in Michigan, especially in computer engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, and manufacturing and industrial engineering.

Besides UM-Ann Arbor and Oakland U, ESD now has student chapters at Michigan Technological University, Lake Superior State University, Michigan State University, Lawrence Technological University, the University of Detroit Mercy, Wayne State University and Eastern Michigan University. Talks are under way to establish chapters at Saginaw Valley State University, Grand Valley State University and Western Michigan University.

Here are a few pictures of both chapters’ launches:

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AT&T Expands 4G Network Across Michigan

DETROIT — AT&T Inc. announced a number of network expansions of its fast 4G data network throughout the southern half of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula.

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AT&T Expands Fast 4G Network In Oakland, Macomb Counties

DETROIT — AT&T Inc. Thursday announced expansions of its 4G network in Oakland and Macomb counties.

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National Future City Champs From Rochester At Space Camp

HUNTSVILLE, ALA. — The two-time defending Future City national champions from St. John School in Rochester are having an out of this world time.

The presentation team of Abby Dayton, Leah Schroeder, and Emily Abramczyk, along with engineer-mentor Linda Gerhardt and St. John teacher Jon Pfund, are at Space Camp, at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center.

It’s the first time to Space Camp for the presenters, who helped the St. John earn the championship of the Future City Michigan Regional, run by The Engineering Society of Detroit, back in January. They earned the trip by winning the National Championship in February.

Since this was the second consecutive year that the team has been honored with the national title, the trip to Space Camp will be the second visit in as many years for Linda Gerhardt and Jon Pfund.

This week, the presenters are participating in Space Academy activities for students in grades 7 through 9, while Gerhardt and Jon Pfund will participate in Space Camp for Educators with the 2015 State Teachers of the Year from across the U.S. and its territories.

In addition, international teachers and students from Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Greece, Norway,  and India will participate in Educators Space Camp with Jon and Linda Pfund, while students from these countries will participate in the Space Academy activities with Future City presenters.

Both groups spend their week at Space Camp participating in hands-on science, technology, engineering, and math activities. The week will be filled with special guest speakers, simulated shuttle and lunar missions, astronaut training simulators, rocket building, and a number of laboratory based experiments.

The teams will hear first-hand accounts of space flight and the development of NASA’s manned space program from speakers who were involved in those missions. This year’s guest speakers include former teacher and astronaut Dottie Metcalf-Lindenberger, “Rocket Boys” author Homer Hickam, and former NASA public affairs officer and Space Camp Founder Edward O. Buckbee.

The day the team arrived was also the date of the annual Space Exploration Celebration at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center’s Davidson Center for Space Exploration’s Saturn V Hall. This event commemorates the scientists, engineers and others who worked in the space program from the Mercury era to the Space Launch System.

In addition to all of the exciting activities taking place throughout the week at the U.S. Space and Rocket Center, the team has also been invited to visit the Bentley Systems office in Huntsville for an honorary luncheon on Wednesday, July 22. Bentley Systems is a major sponsor of the Future City Competition at the national level and the award sponsor for the national championship team.

To watch a video of the winning Future City team, which aired in May on Rochester community TV, visit http://www.cmntv.org/2015/04/rochester-report-may-2015.

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Future City Kicks Off 2015-16 Competition: ‘Waste Not, Want Not’

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Solutions to the challenges of waste management are critical to the very survival of urban environments around the world.

But don’t worry. The Future City competition will have tens of thousands of middle school students working on the problem, including the two-time defending national champions from St. John Lutheran School in Rochester.

Future City 2015-16 is now under way, with the theme “Waste Not, Want Not.” Future City, a program of the engineering promotion group DiscoverE, is a national project-based learning experience in which students in sixth, seventh and eighth grades imagine, research, design and build cities set 150 years in the future.

Each year, the competition’s theme changes to keep the challenge fresh. This year’s theme asks students to design waste management systems of the future, as part of Future City’s goal to get students thinking about how to make the world a better place.

Over the centuries of human history, civilization has dealt with its ever-expanding piles of trash in a variety of ways — burying it in landfills, burning it in incinerators, and more recently, recycling and reusing through techniques like composting. Today’s engineers are focused on the four R’s of waste management — reduce, reuse, recycle and rot — and are increasingly viewing solid waste not as trash but as a resource.

This year’s theme encourages students to design waste management systems for residential and business use by looking at issues such as collection, separation, processing, recycling, health and safety, energy efficiency, environmental impact and cost.

In Future City, students will learn how today’s engineers and city planners deal with citywide sustainability issues like solid waste management. They’ll research cutting edge technologies and imagine and design a plausible and futuristic solution that can exist for generations.

Working in a team with an educator and engineer mentor, Future City students present their vision of their future city in a virtual city design, using SimCity software. They also write a 1,500-word city description, and build a scale model of their city using recycled materials. Finally — and often, very entertainingly — they develop a presentation about their city that they perform before a judging panel of volunteer STEM professionals.

Teams from 37 regions present their ideas at regional competitions, held each year in January. Winners of these regionals make presentations at the National Finals in Washington, DC in February, held in conjunction with National Engineers Week.

St. John School has won the Michigan regional, managed by The Engineering Society of Detroit, the past five years in a row, and the national finals the past two years straight.

More than 40,000 students, representing 1,350 schools, take part in the Future City Competition. The deadline to register is Oct. 3. Register today or learn more at http://www.futurecity.org. More about DiscoverE, a coalition of more than 100 professional societies, corporations and government agencies, at http://www.discovere.org. DiscoverE introduces students, parents, and educators to engineering, and engages them in hands-on engineering experiences to make science and math relevant.

Major funding for the National Finals comes from Bechtel Corp., Bentley Systems, and Shell Oil Co.

Photos From ESD’s Tour Of Leader Dogs for the Blind

ROCHESTER — Around a dozen Engineering Society of Detroit members enjoyed a tour of Rochester’s Leader Dogs for the Blind Thursday afternoon.

Included was a presentation from Sarah Osaer of Leader Dogs client services on the advanced spoken-word GPS technology now included as part of the Leader Dogs service.

The GPS device helps clients with their confidence and mobility, giving them the ability to follow directions to a destination with the assistance of their leader dog.

David Locklin, class coordinator and guide dog mobility instructor, gave a tour of the 30-room residential area where Leader Dog clients spend about a month in training with their dogs. Leader Dog clients must be at least 16 years old, legally blind, with good orientation and mobility skills, and must have the ability to care for a dog on their own.

And Rachelle Kniffen, director of communications and marketing, gave a tour of the Leader Dogs kennel, currently undergoing a $14.5 million renovation and expansion.

Leader Dogs breeds its own guide dog puppies from generations of proven stock. The dogs are raised by volunteers for their first year of life, then come to Leader Dogs’ headquarters on Rochester Road for further training.

Leader Dog matches its clients with a dog that best suits their lifestyle, travel pace, physical size, stamina, and other considerations.

Leader Dog service is free to the blind. The cost — about $32,000 to breed a dog, train it, and match it with a blind person — is covered by foundation, corporate and individual donations. Leader Dogs matches about 200 dogs with visually impaired people a year, in classes of about 25 at a time.

Following are photos of the tour:

The interior of the Leader Dogs residential area
The interior of the Leader Dogs residential area
One of the guest rooms in the Leader Dogs residential training area
One of the guest rooms in the Leader Dogs residential training area

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The residential rooms also open onto an outdoor courtyard so it's easy to let the dog "go" when it needs to.
The residential rooms also open onto an outdoor courtyard so it’s easy to let the dog “go” when it needs to.

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Rachelle Kniffen, Director of Communications & Marketing at Leader Dogs, leads the group on a tour of the kennel, currently undergoing a $14.5 million renovation and expansion.
Rachelle Kniffen, Director of Communications & Marketing at Leader Dogs, leads the group on a tour of the kennel, currently undergoing a $14.5 million renovation and expansion.

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Leader Dogs in training
Leader Dogs in training
What a smile!
What a smile!

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A pavilion is in the center of the two wings of the residential area.
A pavilion is in the center of the two wings of the residential area.
The interior of one wing of the kennel.
The interior of one wing of the kennel.