Adam Savage named 2018 Homecoming Distinguished LecturerAdam Savage will be the Colorado School of Mines 2018 Homecoming Distinguished Lecturer on Thursday, September 27.

Savage, an internationally renowned television producer, is best known for his role as the former co-host of the popular television show Mythbusters with Jamie Hyneman. Mythbusters produced more than 250 episodes that aired in more than 100 countries. The program tackled over 1,000 myths and performed nearly 3,000 experiments.

Savage has also worked as a graphic designer, robot builder, welder, machinist, toy maker and a variety of other jobs. He has written for Popular Mechanics, the Wall Street Journal and Wired Magazine, among others. Savage is an honorary lifetime member of the National Science Teachers Association, an honorary member of Sigma Xi and was presented with an honorary doctorate from the Universiteit Twente in the Netherlands for his role in popularizing science and technology. Read his full biography below.

Homecoming at Mines will take place Thursday, September 27 through Saturday, September 29. Alumni registration will open on July 9. More information and a full itinerary of Homecoming events can be found on the Mines Activities Council website,


Adam Savage is an internationally renowned television producer, host and public speaker. His mother is a psychologist, his father was a celebrated artist, painter and filmmaker. From the youngest age, they encouraged his flights of fancy. Adam has been a paperboy, a projectionist, juggler, unicycle rider, sculptor, graphic designer, scenic painter, robot builder, welder, carpenter, machinist, prop maker, toy designer, actor, writer, executive producer and director. He spent six years in theater and 10 years in commercial and film special effects working for clients such as Nike, Corning, Hershey's and Coca-Cola, and films like Star Wars, the Matrix films, A.I., Space Cowboys, Terminator 3 and Galaxy Quest. Adam has built everything from theater sets to miniature particle accelerators. From spaceships to animatronic arms. He's made Rube Goldberg machines, hand props and spacesuits. Adam's online videos have generated over 230 million page views. He's written for Popular Mechanics, the Wall Street Journal and Wired Magazine, among others. His program Mythbusters produced 270 episodes that aired in over 100 countries for 14 years. Adam shares his builds, his love for movie props and costumes, and passion for the transformative power of making on his award-winning website He lives in San Francisco with his wife Julia, his twin boys Thing1 and Thing2, and two amazing dogs.

Mythbusters Accolades 

Though Adam does not have a degree in engineering or science, he’s been made an honorary lifetime member of the National Science Teachers Association; an honorary member of Sigma Xi, and Dignitary Members of the Association of International Bomb Technicians and was presented with an honorary doctorate from the Universiteit Twente in the Netherlands for his role, along with Jamie Hyneman, in popularizing science and technology. 


Joe DelNero, Digital Media and Communications Manager, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3326 |
Emilie Rusch, Public Information Specialist, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3361 |

Colorado School of Mines was ranked eighth in the nation on Payscale's list of colleges and universities with the highest return on tuition investment 20 years after graduation.

With a 20-year return on investment calculated at $909,000, Mines was the top-ranked school in Colorado, one spot ahead of the United States Air Force Academy.

Mines is a great value for students paying out-of-state tuition as well, with their net ROI of $840,000 good for 13th best in the country.

Mines was also ranked seventh on Payscale's list of best value colleges for science majors based on the return on investment specifically for science majors, and 18th on Payscale's list of best universities and colleges by salary potential with early career pay of $71,900 and mid-career pay of $136,100.


Joe DelNero, Digital Media and Communications Manager, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3326 |
Mark Ramirez, Managing Editor, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3088 |

Twenty-four Colorado School of Mines graduate students participated in Three Minute Thesis (3MT®), an exciting event that challenges students to present their research in a clear, concise manner to a non-specialist audience, on April 5 for a chance to win a $1,000 grand prize.

3MT helps students learn how to effectively communicate their research. Competitors are only allowed a single slide to help their presentation and cannot use any additional props, visuals or resources.

“The competition cultivates students’ academic, presentation and research communication skills,” said Veronica Waller, operations manager in the Office of Graduate Studies. “We hope that this gives students a fresh and new opportunity to think about communicating their research to a wide audience.”

This was the first 3MT competition at Mines and was initiated by Graduate Dean Wendy Zhou with support from Interim Provost Tom Boyd.

Competitors submitted a three-minute video in the first round, 12 students moved on to give a live presentation in the second round and only seven finalists were selected to compete in the third round for their chance to win the grand prize. Halley Keevil, a PhD candidate from the Department of Geology and Geological Engineering, won the $1,000 grand prize; Stephen Semmens, a PhD candidate from the same department, came in second place, winning $500; and John Rea, a PhD candidate in materials science from the Department of Physics, won the $250 People’s Choice award. The other finalists were Meaghan Guyader, civil and environmental engineering; Lauren Sepp, mechanical engineering; Nathan Johnson, mechanical engineering; and Levente Sipeki, mechanical engineering.

Mines President Paul Johnson, Vice President of Research and Technology Transfer Stefanie Tompkins and the other judges scored the seven finalists based on comprehension, content, engagement and communication. Criteria included:

  • Did the speaker clearly understand their topic and make the audience understand something as well?

  • Did the presentation clearly describe key results including conclusions and outcomes?

  • Did the presenter engage and connect with the audience?

  • Did the presenter capture and maintain their audience’s attention?

“The competition helps students communicate the value and output of their research in a concise and approachable way to general public, which has become one of the critical skills for all researchers,” said Ye Li, the scholarly communications and instruction librarian at Arthur Lakes Library. “Featuring their presentations will help Mines to highlight research stories on campus and how we relate to our community and beyond.”

The 3MT event at Mines was cosponsored by the Office of Graduate Studies, Graduate Student Government and Arthur Lakes Library.


Joe DelNero, Digital Media and Communications Manager, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3326 |
Mark Ramirez, Managing Editor, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3088 |

Colorado School of Mines is launching a new, broad-based Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree this fall that integrates the strength of a Mines technical degree with the flexibility to pursue individual interests and passions.

This will be the first time Mines has offered a general engineering degree since 2012, when the previous iteration was transformed into four separate degree programs for mechanical, electrical, civil and environmental engineering.

The revitalized BSE will give students exposure to the broad fundamentals of science, mathematics and engineering while engaging in significant project-based learning experiences every semester. Flexibility will be a hallmark of the degree, with students able to build their own specialized area of focus or choose from one of six interdisciplinary areas – energy studies, water security, community development, robotics and automation, corporate sustainability, and music, audio engineering and recording arts. 

“The Bachelor of Science in Engineering is all about educating the next generation of engineering innovators, design thinkers and impact makers who will be leaders in defining and solving problems,” said John Persichetti, director of the BSE Program and teaching associate professor in the Engineering, Design and Society Division. “The BSE is for students who have a vision of what they want to do with their engineering degree that isn’t directly served by a traditional engineering degree, who want to integrate relevant social science content into that degree, and who are not intimidated by ambiguity or the complexity of tackling real-world problems.”

Core engineering education will cover five fundamental topics – fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, statics, circuits and materials – with a supporting foundation in the humanities and social sciences, including a required communications class. All BSE students will also participate in six semester-long Integrative Design Studios, with the hands-on, human-centered learning experiences culminating in the yearlong Capstone Senior Design Studio

“These Integrative Design Studios are intended to give students training in and exposure to the fact that in practice engineers must interact with more than the technical challenges of a problem and must often first be ‘problem definers’ before they are problem-solvers,” said Kevin Moore, dean of the College of Engineering and Computational Sciences. “Understanding the context of engineering in today’s world requires understanding the social, political, economic, environmental and cultural impacts of their designs in order to truly make a difference.”

Graduates of the BSE program will be well positioned to work in leadership roles in a wide range of industrial, governmental, academic and non-engineering disciplines, Persichetti said.  More than half of recruiters at Mines surveyed a couple years ago said they would be interested in graduates with a BSE. 

“Mines graduates are viewed as really being top-notch when it comes to solving problems – we’re just broadening a student’s mindset and exposure to how to solve those problems,” Persichetti said. “Stronger emphasis on communication and leadership skills coupled with design thinking and methodologies that are built and honed through ongoing design studios will provide employers with an engineer who is well equipped to make immediate and meaningful contributions as a new hire.”

Additional BSE focus areas could be added in the future, including pre-med and STEM education. 

Emilie Rusch, Public Information Specialist, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3361 |
Mark Ramirez, Managing Editor, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3088 |

Colorado School of Mines is excited to announce that the university is now an official partner of the Kern Entrepreneurial Engineering Network (KEEN). KEEN is a growing network of 30+ undergraduate engineering programs around the United States, including institutions such as Arizona State University, Santa Clara University and Villanova University. The network’s mission is to graduate engineers with an entrepreneurial mindset who can create personal, economic, and societal value through a lifetime of meaningful work.
As a KEEN partner, Mines will have access to exclusive benefits aimed at helping to expand and improve entrepreneurial education on campus. Benefits include faculty development opportunities, curriculum resources and grants and funding for aligned initiatives, such as support for the University Innovation Fellows program.
Advocating for expanding the entrepreneurial mindset – which encompasses student attitudes, motivations and dispositions – is critical in today’s dynamic and interconnected world. KEEN helps students to develop this mindset through a framework of the “3C’s:”
  • Curiosity: “An inquisitiveness marked by an insatiable desire to learn about our changing world”
  • Connections: “The ability to integrate information from many different sources to gain insight”
  • Creating Value: “Finding unexpected opportunities to create value for others”
Mines hopes to use the resources provided by KEEN to develop new programs and to equip faculty with the tools needed to incorporate these concepts into initiatives and curriculum at Mines so that students are best prepared to find success upon entering the workforce.
About Colorado School of Mines
Colorado School of Mines is known globally for the quality of its distinctive graduates, the success of its alumni and its unique expertise in topics related to earth, energy and the environment. Mines produces industry-ready scientists and engineers known for their work ethic, problem-solving ability and teamwork focus. Mines graduates are in great demand by companies and government entities around the world and are involved in solving major technical and societal challenges of our times.
About The Kern Family Foundation
The Kern Family Foundation invests in the rising generation of Americans, equipping them to become tomorrow's leaders and innovators. Established in 1999, The Kern Family Foundation is a prominent, strategic foundation based in Wisconsin that invests in the rising generation of leaders. The Foundation aims to effect systemic change through partnerships to preserve the tradition of private enterprise, which enables the United States to thrive intellectually and economically. Its three program areas are Education and Character, Faith, Work and Economics, and Entrepreneurial Engineering. The Foundation has a national vision for its strategic initiatives, but does not accept unsolicited applications.

Lexie Mitchell, Assistant Director, Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation |
Emilie Rusch, Public Information Specialist, Colorado School of Mines | 303-273-3361 |

The 2018 Joe Eazor Executive in Residence Seminar Series hosted by the Division of Economics and Business’ Engineering and Technology Management Program will be led by author, speaker, consultant and innovator Raj Rawat.

Open to all Mines students and faculty, the seminar series allows executives from industry to pass on insight and knowledge to students preparing for challenges that the seasoned executive understands well. This Engineering and Technology Management Program initiative facilitates active involvement by industry executives, through teaching, student advising activities and more.

Seminars begin Jan. 16 and take place 4-5:30 p.m. at Colorado School of Mines in Marquez Hall 126.

2018 Joe Eazor Executive in Residence Seminar Series Schedule

  • Jan. 16 - Reverse the Chase, Let Opportunity Chase You - Raj Rawat 
  • Jan. 30 - What Leaders Are Made Of - Greg Keller, James Jamison and Abby Benson 
  • Feb. 6 - Building Your Leadership Core - Katherine Knowles, Bart Lorang and Jessica Garcia 
  • Feb. 27 - Excellence and Leadership - Remy Arteaga and Julie Korak 
  • March 13 - Excellence = Fearless Life - George Promis and Nick Gromicko 
  • April 10 - Your Everest - Student Presenters 

Meet the speakers and learn more at

Raj Rawat: 2018 Executive in Residence
Raj Rawat is an author, speaker, consultant and innovator. After 20 years of leading “impossible” billion-dollar projects for Fortune 50 companies, he found his passion in inspiring companies and individuals to rise to their full potential.

Rawat’s recent book, “Find Your Everest: Before Someone Chooses It For You,” is gaining critical acclaim for its inspirational yet honest approach to think big and achieve. Rawat creates high-performance cultures by aligning individuals’ priorities with the organization’s performance targets.

Learn more at

Kelly Beard, Communications Specialist, Division of Economics and Business | 303-273-3452 |
Mark Ramirez, Managing Editor, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3088 |

The Colorado School of Mines student section of the Society of Women Engineers celebrated graduating female students at its midyear Continuum on Wednesday, December 13.

The Continuum is a biannual event held at the end of the fall and spring semester, and invites families, friends, alumnae and members of the Mines community to campus to celebrate the class of graduating women.

Kim Bogue ’03, a Mines graduate and systems engineer at Raytheon, was the keynote speaker at the event. Bogue has worked on multiple programs for the company, supporting the development of mission management and command and control software and hardware for satellite ground stations.

Graduating electrical engineering seniors Nana Adu and Andrea Benefiel also spoke at the event.

“I’m sure we are all anxious about entering the next stage of our lives but we want to encourage you to embrace that fear,” Adu said. “Keep learning because you have the ability to make a real impact in the world.”

The Continuum started in 1999 when Susan Rainey, a SWE member and graduating senior, wanted to form an event recognizing the women on campus. Rainey brought together SWE, the Women in Science, Engineering and Mathematics program and the Mines Alumni Association to develop and sponsor the event.


Joe DelNero, Digital Media and Communications Manager, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3326 |
Mark Ramirez, Managing Editor, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3088 |

ASM Silver Medal AwardA Colorado School of Mines professor has received an award for distinguished contributions in the field of materials science and engineering.

Kip Findley, an associate professor in the Department of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, received ASM International’s Silver Medal Award for outstanding contributions to developing a physically based understanding of deformation, fatigue and fracture in high-performance steels.

“It is a tremendous honor to be recognized by ASM International,” Findley said. “This recognition encompasses the work we do in the Advanced Steel Processing and Products Research Center. Our center works at the interface of users and producers of steel to develop steel alloys and processing for enhanced performance, including fatigue, fracture and deformation. Our research and cooperation with industry leads to advancements in steel products for these applications to enable increased fuel efficiency and safer pipelines, for example.”

Findley received the award at the MS&T17 conference October 8-12 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The silver medal recognizes mid-career researchers for contributions and service to the field. Only one academic and one non-academic may receive this honor each year. Judging is based on technical or business accomplishments, beneficial impact of contributions to industry or society and volunteer professional service.


Joe DelNero, Digital Media and Communications Manager, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3326 |
Mark Ramirez, Managing Editor, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3088 |

Marc Edwards will be the keynote speaker at The Young's Environmental SymposiumColorado School of Mines is hosting a film screening, panel discussion and keynote speaker in a two-day symposium on the water crisis in Flint, Michigan.

The Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, along with the Hennebach Program in the Humanities and former Mines President John Trefny, is organizing the Young’s Environmental Symposium on October 18-19.

The symposium opens Wednesday, October 18, with a screening of “Noah: Rising from the Ashes in Flint” at 6:30 p.m. in the Green Center’s Metals Hall. The film tells the story of Noah Patton, a young Flint resident, who is working to positively shape the future of his community.  The film will be followed by a panel discussion with filmmaker Dana Romanoff; Pastor Robert McCathern, a local Flint religious leader; Margaret Kato, the executive director of Genesee County Habitat for Humanity in Flint; and Marc Edwards, Thursday’s keynote speaker.

Marc Edwards, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Virginia Tech who was a key player in bringing the Flint crisis into focus, presents “Citizen Science and the Flint Water Crisis – Triumph, Tragedy and Misconduct” from 7 to 9 p.m. on October 19 in the Green Center’s Friedhoff Hall. Edwards will discuss case studies of engineering and scientific misconduct that have been perpetrated by government agencies meant to protect the public health.

"The purpose of the symposium is to bring awareness of environmental issues that have important social significance to Mines and the surrounding communities,” said John McCray, professor and head of Mines’ Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.

This symposium is sponsored through a gift from The Young Foundation and is named after Herbert Young, a 1939 Mines graduate who majored in mining engineering and established the symposium.


Joe DelNero, Digital Media and Communications Manager, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3326 |
Mark Ramirez, Managing Editor, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3088 |

The Mines library has launched a new specialized interface to help students, faculty and staff explore theses and senior papers.

Arthur Lakes Library’s new Mines Theses and Dissertations search interface allows students to explore senior papers, theses and dissertations. The collection already has more than 9,000 titles, and more will continue to be added. The library recently added Walter Howard Wiley’s paper, “Report upon the Utopia Mine, Ophir, Ouray Co., Colorado,” which is the earliest recorded Mines thesis, published in 1883.

The new search interface has features including multiple search filters and tags, and new features are being rolled out each month. Students can search by author, keyword, advisor, department or title.

“The pace of development is breathtaking,” said Laura Guy, a systems librarian at Arthur Lakes Library. “The new search interface allows users to easily and quickly identify the thesis they are looking for.”

Guy added that many theses have supplemental information such as maps, statistical data or other research outputs that can be beneficial for students looking to build upon past research.

The library has also developed a similar search interface for eBooks only, giving users access to thousands of online books.


Joe DelNero, Digital Media and Communications Manager, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3326 |
Mark Ramirez, Managing Editor, Communications and Marketing | 303-273-3088 |


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