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“Champion Magazine” Spring 2014 Issue Features Albion College Men’s Lacrosse Sr. Defenseman Carl Pressprich & Rebirth Of Michigan Auto Industry


Albion Men's Lacrosse Defenseman Carl Pressprich NCAA Champion Magazine Spring 2014Albion Men’s Lacrosse Sr. Defenseman Carl Pressprich is on the defense — in lacrosse and for the imperiled place he wants to call home.

An NCAA “Champion Magazine” Profile.

For months last year, Carl Pressprich worked behind two monitors and a laptop in a solitary cubicle at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee, the nation’s largest science and energy lab managed for the U.S. Department of Energy. Pressprich engineered a lofty project: writing computer programming code that could one day help protect wireless networks – which control everything from the electric grid to hotel heating and cooling systems – from hackers and terrorists.

“Hackers already have the tools they need to hack into these networks,” Pressprich said. “Because the tools exist and are so readily available, we wanted to focus on a way to identify outsiders so the network can shut out that traffic and prevent it from causing damage.”

Pressprich, a defender on the Albion College lacrosse team who is working toward a career in engineering, worked mostly alone, even as an intern. His only co-worker: a supervisor who provided direction through email because his work often took him out of the office. The project was fulfilling, matched Pressprich’s skills and could become pioneering work in the field of network security.

Yet despite working so closely on the cyberthreats of the future, Pressprich sees his own future on a different path – one that many might consider to be an industry of the past: automobiles. Pressprich wants to be among the legions of young people who write the next chapter for Detroit, just 90 minutes east of Albion and the longtime capital of the American automotive industry.

“Why would I work in Detroit after school? Why would I stay in the auto industry when they’re struggling and companies are going bankrupt?” Pressprich asks. “I see it as a new problem to solve. How do you make new cars more efficient? How do you make them lighter, cheaper, safer? There are just so many different interesting problems to solve with an automobile.”

Pressprich now wants to play defender for Detroit against an uncertain future. The Detroit of today might not seem like the place to focus a promising engineering career. The city, faced with $14 billion in long-term debt, filed for bankruptcy in 2013; an estimated 50 percent of its residents have no jobs; and the city is shrinking, with one-quarter of its inhabitants moving out between 2000 and 2010.

But for up-and-comers willing to take a chance on this Michigan city, opportunities abound: Entrepreneurism is contagious, with tech startups budding and young risk-takers flocking to take advantage of cheap real estate. Even the American auto industry is on the upswing: Americans’ appetite for buying cars is returning, and leaner, more efficient Detroit automakers are even outperforming foreign rivals by some measures for the first time in more than a decade.

Plus, Pressprich sees Detroit as more than just a problem to solve. A Michigan native and the grandson of two electrical engineers who worked in the automotive industry – one at Ford, one at General Motors – Pressprich wants to build a life in his home state and sees the rebuilding of Detroit as a charge for his generation of Michiganders.

“Most of our students are from Michigan, and their passion for and loyalty to the state of Michigan are incredible,” said Dr. Michael Frandsen, interim president of Albion. “They want to build a life here, and they want to invest their talent and their energy into helping Michigan be successful. Detroit has certainly taken a beating, in reality and in perception, and a lot of people want to be part of changing that.”

Photographed inside Caster Concepts, an Albion-based manufacturer that laser-cut hundreds of metal pieces for the “Comet!” sculpture in the college’s science atrium, Pressprich hopes his career keeps him in his home state.

 

Pressprich grew up in Ann Arbor as the son of two University of Michigan graduates. His dad is an accountant; his mother trained as a nurse. Among their children, Carl is the one their mother always calls upon to fix the dishwasher or the dryer because of his knack for taking things apart – and putting them back together.

As a boy, Pressprich enjoyed spending time with his maternal grandfather, Laurence Mieras, who worked in product development at Ford. Pressprich calls him a “method-driven man” and said he learns from his grandfather, now 79, just by listening to how he tackles a problem – whether he’s fixing engines or woodworking.

“I don’t have some story where I knew that I was supposed to be an engineer,” Pressprich said. “My whole life has kind of been constant reminders and constant inspiration drawn from my family, drawn from my teachers, drawn from the way I look at the world.”

Pressprich was in high school the first time he picked up a lacrosse stick. Already a football player, he realized that he performed better academically when he had a sport to help balance his time. He went looking for a spring sport – and found lacrosse.

“It’s a really physical sport, really fast-paced,” Pressprich said. “It was a real pressure environment. I loved it.”

Albion lacrosse coach Jake DeCola first met Pressprich while recruiting some of his teammates when Pressprich was a high school junior. DeCola was drawn to Pressprich’s size – 6-foot-1, 210 pounds – and told the high school student about Albion’s dual-degree program: Pressprich could attend Albion for three years, then transfer to an engineering school and finish in five years total with bachelor’s degrees from both Albion and the engineering school.

The Albion program fit Pressprich’s interest in earning a liberal arts education while also building personal relationships with his professors.

Physics professor David G. Seely said he has always been impressed by Pressprich’s ability to balance school obligations with his other interests, which are many and varied.

“Albion tends to attract students who have a lot of outside interests, and Carl’s not an exception,” Seely said. “But often, those students have a hard time balancing all their interests. Carl has always impressed me as being able to balance his schedule and do well in academics while at the same time participating in lacrosse.”

Pressprich learned in March that he had been admitted to his top-choice engineering school. His pick isn’t surprising: Michigan, a school that allows him to stay close to home and has myriad networking contacts in the city where Pressprich hopes to settle.

“My whole life, I’ve wanted to work in the auto industry or at one of the companies that work around Detroit to support the auto industry,” he said. “Detroit has shrunk so much, but there are so many people who are working so hard to make it an amazing city.”

 

 

Legends Of Lacrosse: Hobart Men’s Lacrosse Attacker Rick Gilbert (1971-74) Still Holds NCAA Div II Records For Career Points (444) And Assists (287)


Lacrosse Star Champion Magazine-page-001

Champion Magazine

Lacrosse ACL Knee Injuries: “Champion Magazine” Features “Obstacle Course: After Reconstructive Surgery, Student-Athletes Face A Grueling Path To Emotional And Physical Recovery”


Obstacle Course Article On Knee Reconstruction Surgery Champions Magazine

Every year, more than 2,000 NCAA student-athletes across 15 high-risk sports will feel that bomb detonate inside their knee, hear the menacing echo reverberate through their body, endure a few minutes of misery in their final moments on the playing surface and eight or more of the most trying months of their lives off it. Next season isn’t assured.

A YEARLONG BATTLE

“No matter how strong you are, you’re still at risk,” says Dr. Leland Winston, head physician for Rice athletics. “When the ACL tears, your muscles don’t have time to react quickly enough to protect it.”

Student-athletes crumple into a heap on a court or a field, clutching vainly at a knee. Slow-motion replays show the joint contorting, buckling, twisting. Questionable return, the announcers say. Torn ACL, the newspapers read. We’ll see him next season, fans think. Bring in the next player.

Then they turn the page.

ACL InjuriesBut what is an ACL? Why does it matter? Why does it so frequently interject itself into discussions of college athletics? After all, it’s merely one of four major ligaments that stabilize the knee. But it runs vertically through the middle of the joint, serving as its backbone, keeping the femur and tibia in place as players cut, jump and accelerate through practice and competition. Though student-athletes are faster and stronger than they’ve ever been, a study of NCAA injury data revealed that ACL tears rose by 1.3 percent annually over a recent 16-year period.

But advances in surgical and rehab techniques have shifted the odds dramatically in their favor. Orthopedic surgeons note that roughly 90 percent of athletes recover from ACL tears, most of whom reach pre-injury levels of athleticism. The snap of a ligament and gasps of concerned fans are no longer the requiem for an athletics career.

After they’re stitched – sometimes stapled – together, student-athletes will spend many waking hours in forgotten training rooms where torment and tedium collide. As the graft and the screws settle into tunnels burrowed inside bone, they’ll rehabilitate shriveled muscles, performing endless repetitions of exercises that evoke a startling, unfamiliar brand of pain. They’ll watch the teammates they’ve sweated and bled with go to battle without them. They’ll miss classes in the mostly bedridden week that follows surgery. They’ll tackle homework with minds smothered by pain medication.

And when they’re cleared to play again? Most endure a yearlong battle with themselves, learning once again to trust the joint that’s caused so much strife.

“This is harder than anything you’ll do on the court,” says Oklahoma State basketball athletic trainer Jason Miller. “This is the hardest thing to get through. It’s painful. It hurts. It’s time consuming.”

Champion Magazine

By Brian Burnsed

And student-athletes will navigate the other parts of their lives, the parts not devoted to or defined by basketball or soccer or football, on crutches. Tasks once taken for granted – sleeping comfortably, getting off a toilet, opening a door, maneuvering into a car or comically small college desk, getting a meal in a cafeteria, or carrying a textbook-laden backpack across campus – become monumental obstacles. And stairs sap time and energy, evoking dread and sweat. They’re to be avoided. Except, in college, they seem to be unavoidable; Olukemi lives on the third floor.

“Stairs were the hardest part after surgery,” Olukemi says, more than three weeks into rehab. “They still are.”

– See more at: http://www.ncaa.org/wps/wcm/connect/public/ncaa/Champion+Features/obstacle+course#sthash.G9jm7nPW.V37R3uhA.dpuf

Growth Of NCAA Lacrosse: Colleges Added 232 Womens Lacrosse Programs Since 1989 (48 Div I); 115 Men’s Lacrosse Programs Added (3 Div I)


For more: http://ncaachampionmagazine.org/

 

NCAA Lacrosse: “Fall 2011 Champion Magazine” Features “Tremendous” Impact Of Michigan Men’s Lacrosse Elevation To Varsity Status