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Hello All!

First of all, if you haven't yet done so, I'd appreciate it if you would sign my guestbook, and perhaps you may want to view my guestbook as well. For those of you who don't know, my name is Marc Sulfridge. I attempt to keep this website current, but as with most personal websites, it falls a bit out of date every so often. I am currently in the process of making it a bit more current.

The setting for the image you see above is the Sawtooth Mountains in my home state of Idaho. By the way, the guy on the right is me, and the other guy is my good friend Jake. Anyway, this is one of the most spectacular mountain ranges I have ever seen; it is covered with scenic mountain lakes and rugged peaks, and it is a perfect place for a summer hike. There are literally hundreds of miles of trails traversing the entire range, which lies just to the west of the nation's number one ski resort: Sun Valley.

Okay, you say, but why is this on your home page? The reason is that currently, I am nearly 2000 miles from the great American Northwest, in an area of the country that is known, ironically, as the Midwest. Specifically, I am a seventh year graduate student in mechanical engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Fortunately, that condition is going to change very soon. For those who haven't heard the news, I'll bring you up to speed very shortly. Anyway, having lived here in the Midwest for nearly 7 years now, I can definitely say that I much prefer the Pacific Northwest. I guess the primary thing I miss is the mountains. It is SO FLAT here!

Anyway, on to other things. Let's see. I am a college graduate. Yes, it's true. I got my first expensive piece of paper (Specifically a BS in engineering) in June of '96 from Caltech , and rather than being smart and using that degree to my full advantage by actually making some money with it, I decided to go to graduate school. I keep telling myself that I did it in the pursuit of knowlege, but more likely it's because I've been in school so long that I don't think I'd know what to do with myself in the real world. =) Since I have been here in Illinois, I received my Master's Degree in mechanical engineering in October of 1998. My Master's thesis was the design of a MEMS scale compressor for an ultra-small, wearable air conditioning system (MEMS stands for Micro- ElectroMechanical System). I also passed my Ph. D. qualifying exam (written and oral. . . very brutal) in August of 1999. I thenn finished all of my coursework toward my Ph. D. in the Fall of 2001, and I successfully passed my Preliminary Exam (where I chose my thesis committee and presented to them what I plan to do for my thesis work) in May of 2002. Now for the BIG update: I passed my Ph.D. Final Examination (a.k.a. thesis defense) on April 7, 2003, and deposited my thesis in the Graduate College on April 24, 2003, so I am now officially Dr. Sulfridge! Unfortuanately, that means that at the end of this semester, I am also officially unemployed, since I have yet to actually find some sort of gainful employment. Ahh well... C'est la vie. Besides, I'm sure I will be able to find work before too long... If you'd like to take a peek at my resume, click here.

Actually, I am pretty excited about the prospect of making a living working as an engineer. I've always liked seeing how things work, and putting things together, so engineering is the natural thing for me. Several testaments to this interest can be found in the blimp project that my friends and I took on in our senior year at Caltech, The Egyptian Stack, which constituted this same group's contribution to Caltech's Ditch Day legacy, and on a smaller scale, my ME72 design project, pictured here. And, here is a good look at the entire competing ME72 class.

By the way, my Ph. D. work is a new MEMS project funded by NSF on using light to actuate MEMS devices. Very cool. Silicon microprocessing (lithography, plasma etching, metal sputtering, ion milling, etc.) and lasers: it can't get much cooler than that. . .

Oh, and there's one other extremely important update to my life in the past year. Last July (2002), I met a really sweet, down-to-earth, beautiful woman named Melissa. She has come to be an extremely important part of my life since then, and I couldn't believe it when I noticed that there was no mention of her on my web page--so I figured I'd better remedy the situation.

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Marc's Web Page/Caltech/marcsulf@hotmail.com /revised January 04