Mines News

Release Date Monday, January 14, 2019

SD Mines, SDPB and Hay Camp Brewing Company Present STEAM Café

STEAM Café, an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics, is held at 6 p.m. the third Tuesday of each month, at Hay Camp Brewing Company.  A food truck will be available at each STEAM Café where patrons can purchase dinner, and handcrafted beer will be available for purchase from Hay Camp.  


South Dakota School of Mines & Technology continues its partnership  with South Dakota Public Broadcasting and Hay Camp Brewing Company to present four new STEAM Café talks during spring 2019.  STEAM Café is a series of free informal talks by SD Mines faculty and staff on topics ranging from cutting edge research to history.

STEAM Café, an acronym for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics, is held at 6 p.m. the third Tuesday of each month, at Hay Camp Brewing Company.  A food truck will be available at each STEAM Café where patrons can purchase dinner, and handcrafted beer will be available for purchase from Hay Camp.

“STEAM Café is a great opportunity for the community to connect with the staff and faculty at SD Mines to talk about the amazing things happening in the areas of science, technology, engineering, arts and math,” said Rachel Mannhalter, SD Mines Training & Development Coordinator. “We love the idea of this very informal atmosphere where conversations can happen, and connections can be made.”

January 15
Dinosaurs: A Catalyst for Critical Thought
Darrin Pagnac, PhD., Associate Professor in the Department of Geology and Geological Engineering

Dinosaurs provide an effective means for developing more than just knowledge of extinct reptiles. Passion for dinosaurs, when properly directed, can trigger interest in science and be used to develop critical thinking skills. Examination of both scientific and popular dinosaur paleontology can develop competence in information analysis, perception of flawed arguments, recognition of persuasion techniques, and application of disciplined thought processes.  Dinosaurs can also be applied to illustrate examples of logical fallacies. Additionally, television documentaries can be used to examine the popular portrayal of dinosaurs and illustrate the disconnect between scientific fact and storytelling techniques. 

February 19
Despite Our Nature: Incentivizing Cooperation

Saurav Kumar Dubey, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in the Department of Industrial Engineering 

Generally, human beings tend to make decisions that maximize personal benefit. This concept of self-interest is considered in scientific modeling as the property of rationality. However, such decisions do not always lead to the best possible outcome. Sometimes, when people act in self-interest it can have a negative impact on the community or organization.

The focus of this informational talk will be to show that the analysis of real-world systems in the context of game theory provides researchers with the power of foresight and mitigation of human impulses with the assumption of rationality. Game theory is the study of mathematical models of strategic interaction between rational decision-makers. It has applications in all fields of social science, as well as in logic and operations research.

Based on an analytical depiction of the real world, researchers can suggest incentives to modify expected human behavior in order to achieve a better outcome. For instance, promoting cooperation when competition would lead to lower payoffs is an invaluable insight for the purpose of improved decision-making.   This talk will explore ways science and engineering can help create systems and incentives that encourage people, or computer programs, to make decisions in-favor of the community rather than self-interest. 

March 19
The Boundary Work of Double Mothers
Kayla Pritchard, Ph.D., Assistant Professor in the Department of Social Sciences

Cultural ideologies surrounding motherhood represent powerful frameworks for shaping women’s experiences within that role and tend to assign greater value to experiences that fall within a traditional family framework.  However, many women’s experiences of motherhood do not fit within this framework.  The experiences of double mothers - women who have both biological and stepchildren – can highlight the identity work that women perform in blended families. Balancing the cultural expectations of biological motherhood with the challenges of stepmotherhood, many double mothers occupy a space in-between, and perform regular boundary work to navigate their roles.

April 16
Uncertain Futures
Jason Kofke, SD Mines’ Visiting Artist

Due to the threat of ISIS, the Sahara Desert of eastern Mauritania, Africa, has been neglected by most western academics for the past decade. The area is seeing increasing desertification due to global climate change and encroaching sands have buried ancient texts and manuscripts stored in villages along a medieval pilgrimage route. Jason Kofke, SD Mines visiting artist, has organized an expedition to villages deep in the Sahara with the intention of using technology to record what is left of the disappearing history. This project functions as an entry point into issues Kofke explores as an artist: the social ramifications of technological progress and the tendency to understand new technological processes through the perception of outdated technologies. With his STEAM presentation, Kofke will discuss perceptions of change, philosophies of uncertainty, and how what we might expect in a future may not always be an outcome that is predictable. This presentation will correlate with an art exhibition at SD Mines’ APEX Gallery, which is free and open to the public.

Hay Camp Brewing Company is located at 601 Kansas City Street in Rapid City


About South Dakota Mines  

Founded in 1885, South Dakota Mines is one of the nation’s leading engineering, science and technology universities. South Dakota Mines offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees and a best-in-class education at an affordable price. The university enrolls 2,493 students with an average class size of 24. The South Dakota Mines placement rate for graduates is 98 percent, with an average starting salary of more than $70,036. For these reasons  South Dakota Mines is ranked among the best engineering schools in the country for return on investment. Find us online at www.sdsmt.edu and on FacebookTwitter, LinkedInInstagram, and Snapchat.

Contact: Charles Michael Ray, 605 394-6082, Charles.Ray@sdsmt.edu

Upcoming Events

Tuesday, Sep. 26, 2023
11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
King Center
Wednesday, Sep. 27, 2023
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