A Ferris State University Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration associate professor has received an award from the Mechanical Service Contractors of America, for his work with students in the program.
Mike Feutz received the D.S. O’Brien Award of Excellence at the MSCA Conference held in Colorado Springs, Colo., in October. He has served as faculty advisor to Ferris’ MSCA student chapter since 1998. Feutz said that the honor was a “total surprise,” though he noted having a front row seat at the conference awards ceremony should have tipped him to an unusual development.
“I was totally unprepared, as most of the recipients are MSCA member contractors,” Feutz said.
The D.S. O’Brien Award was established in 2000, and is presented each year to an individual who exhibits extraordinary dedication to the HVACR industry, and to the MSCA.
Feutz said that he was asked to serve Ferris’ MSCA chapter as faculty advisor by students, in 1998. The chapter had formed the year before through the efforts of Scott and Chad House, whose father, Don, was business manager of the United Association of plumbers, fitters, welders and service technicians. Feutz said that group has been instrumental in the supporting the HVACR program, and the campus organization.
“They’re the ones who got this started,” Feutz said. “The pipefitter’s union was very instrumental in pushing our service curriculum, and scholarships for our students.”
Feutz also recognized Sandra Miller, the president of the Greater Michigan Plumbing and Mechanical Contractors Association, for her involvement with the MSCA chapter.
“My being named for this award is somewhat unfair to her,” Feutz said. “She has been right there with me in support of these students.”
The MSCA chapter currently has $16,000 in scholarships available each year for participants of this registered student organization. The chapter has received nearly $300,000 in scholarships and additional contributions since its inception.
Feutz said that while graduates of Ferris’ Associate of Applied Science in HVACR Technology, and Bachelor of Science in HVACR Engineering Technology and Energy Management find multiple job offers in their field, participation in the MSCA chapter also supports these students’ goals.
“It’s important to show those leadership roles and organizational involvement on their resume,” Feutz said. “Belonging to an industry-sponsored RSO is the best way to build a network of potential employers.”
Feutz was also chosen as the Mechanical Contractors Association of America’s Educator of the Year in 2008 and again in 2010. The chapter itself was named chapter of the year four times (2000, 2002, 2008 and 2010). Ferris was the first university to earn such recognition.
Feutz earned his associate’s degree in HVACR from Grand Rapids Junior College, now Grand Rapids Community College; a Bachelor of Science degree in HVACR Engineering Technology and a Master of Science in Career and Technical Education, from Ferris; and his Ph.D in Educational Leadership from Western Michigan University.
PHOTO CAPTION: Ferris State University associate professor of HVACR, Mike Feutz, received the D.S. O’Brien Award of Excellence from Scott Berger, 2015 chairman of the Mechanical Service Contractors of America Board of Managers. (Photo courtesy Terry McIver, ContractingBusiness.com)