Miner Stories

Year after year, the ‘Best Ever’

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Since George Menefee first donned a bishop’s hat and robe and rode a rail handcar into Rolla on March 17, 1908, St. Pat’s has been the single tradition most identified with Missouri S&T. The annual celebration occurs every March during the week of St. Patrick’s Day, who students of Menefee’s time dubbed the Patron Saint…

From banker to ‘Bachelor’

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Aaron Buerge, a 1997 mechanical engineering graduate and president of the First National Bank in Springfield, Missouri, was the focus of season two of “The Bachelor” in 2002. The reality television show followed Buerge as he tried to woo various eligible bachelorettes. After several weeks on reality television, he finally returned to the real world…

Builders of the bomb

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The U.S. government’s Manhattan Project, which led to the development of the first nuclear weapons, was a massive but highly secretive World War II undertaking that involved thousands of scientists and engineers at dozens of sites across the nation. They included a few with Rolla connections, most notably Thomas G. Day, a professor of organic…

Tom Benton’s ‘Missouri,’ from mural to movie

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It was “over a few root beer floats” one night that James Bogan and Frank Fillo decided to make a documentary of Thomas Hart Benton’s “A Social History of the State of Missouri,” the mural housed in the Missouri State Capitol. Bogan, a Curators’ Distinguished Teaching Professor emeritus of art at Missouri S&T, and Fillo,…

Alumni leading the telecommunications industry

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Roy Wilkens, EE’66, and Mario A. Padilla, MetE’60, worked for years to challenge and change the status of the telecommunications industry in the early to mid 1990s.  Wilkens, founder, president and CEO of telecommunications company WilTel, worked to challenge and outpace the “big three” at the time of AT&T, MCI and Sprint. His 3,500 employees…