Lisa Fay Coutley ’04 (English) says she learned how to dream big at UW-Green Bay. Coutley is an assistant professor of Poetry and Creative Nonfiction at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. She is also a poet, essayist, teacher and editor, and in the past year, was named among UW-Green Bay’s most honored young alumni. More on Coutley.
Doug Wirth ’89 (Social Work) entered UW-Green Bay feeling good about who he was, but unsure about who he would become. According to Wirth, a degree from UW-Green Bay prepares you well for the world of work. Wirth is the president and CEO of Amida Care, a Medicaid Special Needs Health Plan in New York City. More on Wirth.
Josh Kaurich ’07 (Masters of Environmental Science and Policy) knew he had a lot more to give, but was unsure on how to express that. At UW-Green Bay, he received guidance on how to connect learning to life. Kaurich serves as principal for Verita Energy, LLC and founded and manages Midwest Energy Procurement Solutions, LLC. More on Kaurich.
Being good at something is one thing. Being passionate about learning is another. Outstanding Student Award Recipient, Joshua Vollmar, came to appreciate the difference after taking an Introduction to Human Biology class, realizing that learning about health science while sharing compassion through active volunteerism were key to how he wanted to build his future career. That combination of learning and living make Vollmar a most deserving recipient of this year’s Outstanding Student Award.
Vollmar was presented with the award by the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Alumni Association at a May 17 student award ceremony on campus and was recognized on Saturday, May 18 at the 99th Commencement Ceremony at the Kress Events Center. The Alumni Association, which has been designating a single Outstanding Student Award Recipient for each graduating class since 1976, recognized Vollmar for his undergraduate success as a student and volunteer service for others and the community. He was nominated and selected from all students eligible to receive diplomas at May commencement.
Vollmar graduates today with a Bachelor of Science in Human Biology with a Health Science emphasis. A native of Suring, Wisconsin, Vollmar first came to the UW-Green Bay campus as a fifth grader on a Phuture Phoenix field trip more than 11 years ago. Today, he crossed the stage as an example of UW-Green Bay’s finest: a graduate with a 3.787 GPA, five semesters earning honors, a student highly engaged on and off campus, a Chancellor’s Medallion recipient and a Phoenix ready for more.
Throughout childhood, money was tight and an education past high school was rarely discussed. “I never thought getting a degree was an option for me, let alone being able to have an extensive resume,” Vollmar wrote in his award application. “Attending UW-Green Bay has changed my life for nothing but the better. I have found passion in pursuing a career in medicine and am hoping to return to the area to continue serving the community.”
As a first-generation college student and Phuture Phoenix, Vollmar received several scholarships upon enrolling at UW-Green Bay. He credits these scholarships as the turning point in his education, when he was able to focus more on his academics than on his financial responsibilities. These awards also granted him the opportunity to experience a human biology travel course to Germany and Poland.
Vollmar also worked throughout college to fund his education, starting as a table assembler for a woodcrafts organization and ending as a Certified Nursing Assistant for Bellin Health.
As a human biology major aiming to make a difference, Vollmar immediately got involved in campus organizations including the Tri-Beta Biological Honor Society, where he assisted in turning the organization from inactive to a bustling chapter with 68 members and 22 graduate members and helped create the Human Biology Professional Development Council. Vollmar is a member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and has participated in the UW-Green Bay Fall Research Symposium, the Tiny Earth Research Symposium and the Undergraduate Research, Scholarly and Creative Activity (URSCA) Symposium.
Vollmar’s community volunteer record is impressive and includes giving of his time and talent to numerous community and campus events over the last four years. “Every chance I was given to give back to the community through donations or assisting with an event revolved around one driving force, and that is compassion. While there may be times when the world needs more of it, I am grateful to have witnessed the power of compassion and the effect it can leave on a community. I am excited to carry these qualities into my future career.”
Success comes at your own pace. Yuntlekalau Mamie McLester, Satuday’s graduating class speaker, knows this well. As a non-traditional student, mother and mentor, McLester forged a path toward earning her degree that was neither fast nor easy, but is indeed her own. UW-Green Bay is the fifth and final college she’s attended on her path to completing an undergraduate degree. Along the way, she’s found the importance in one’s passion should be encompassed within earning a degree.
Her unique journey toward obtaining this diploma today included asserting her passions, finding belonging in the right program, having a valuable sense of community on campus and starting a family. Originally from Oneida, Wisconsin, McLester is of the People of the Standing Stone and she’s of the Wolf Clan.
McLester graduates today with a Bachelor of Arts in First Nations, a minor in environmental science and a certificate in Environmental Management and Business. She was nominated to serve as Commencement Speaker by John Arendt, Forrest Brooks, Carol Cornelius, Elizabeth Wheat, JP Leary, Lisa Poupart, Rosa Serrano, Karen Stahlheber, Alison Staudinger and David Turney.
Described as a powerful Haudenosaunee woman, she embodies the work of her ancestors as a positive campus leader. Her contributions to the upward mobility of student successes include but are not limited to serving as a peer mentor in the Gateway to Phoenix Success program, leading the Intertribal Student Council, assistant teaching undergraduate students Ethnohistory with Carol Cornelius. Her strength in helping others comes from being an active community member and a mother. As a student she attended the Wisconsin Sustainability in Business Conference, was a presenter at the Widening the Circle Conference, and presenter at the Wisconsin Indian Education Association. She continues to advocate for wellness and social change in underrepresented communities.
This past year, as an intern at the Great Lakes Inter-Tribal Council’s Native American Research Center on Health, McLester looked into policies and practices that colleges and universities could adopt to help foster greater academic success and better overall wellness for Native American students. McLester served as the student representative on the search and screen committee for the Native American Student Success Coordinator for the UW System, and was the only student from across Wisconsin selected to do so. The work she completed through her internship leaves an important legacy for other Native students who attend UW-Green Bay.
McLester credits UW-Green Bay faculty and fellow students for encouraging her to get involved and to use her voice to encourage the real conversations about inclusion and diversity that are so important in Wisconsin and beyond.
“Ms. McLester works collaboratively across all social groups to build consensus and promote inclusion,” wrote Associate Prof. Lisa Poupart in her letter of recommendation. “Her strengths are many and include strong intellectual abilities, excellent oral communication and presentation skills. She is an authentic ally in action to members of oppressed social groups including people of color and the LGBTQ communities. She is always working to understand her own privilege and challenges those around her to grow and do the same. Her approach to challenging others is effective and firmly rooted in respect.”
Upon graduation, McLester will be applying her education at the Oneida Cultural Heritage department as a language and culture trainee. She was recruited by the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin to serve as an Indigenous language apprentice, where she will be applying for acceptance into an adult immersion program in Ontario.
The University Mace — a ceremonial staff signifying authority — is carried to the stage by one of the most accomplished faculty members just ahead of the Chancellor during the commencement procession. The centuries-old academic tradition is believed to be based on medieval practice when a member of the king’s court would carry an ornate club as a symbolic protection for the monarch. Carrying the mace for the May 2019 commencement ceremony is UW-Green Bay Professor Phillip G. Clampitt.
Clampitt received his Ph.D. in organizational communication from the University of Kansas. He holds the Blair Endowed Chair of Communication and was previously the Hendrickson Professor of Business. Clampitt is the chair of Communication and Information Science. Sage Publications recently published the sixth edition of his best selling book, Communicating for Managerial Effectiveness. He also has co-authored two books with Robert J. DeKoch, President/COO of the Boldt Company: Embracing Uncertainty: The Essence of Leadership and Transforming Leaders into Progress Makers. His newest book, Social Media Strategies for Professionals, was published in May 2017.
Clampitt’s work on “Decision Downloading” was featured in the MIT Sloan Management Review and the Wall Street Journal. Additionally, he has been published in numerous journals, including The Academy of Management Executive, Journal of Communication Management, Journal of Business Communication and Management Communication Quarterly. He is also on the editorial board of many professional journals. Over the past 30 years he has worked on communication and leadership issues with many organizations including Nokia, PepsiCo, Schneider National, The Boldt Company, Dental City and Menasha Corporation.
Clampitt has been a guest speaker at the U.S. Army War College where his books were used in Strategic Leadership class. In addition to many guest speaking opportunities in the U.S., he has also been invited to speak internationally at places such as The University of Pisa, The University of Aberdeen, The University of Ulster, as well as to numerous multi-national businesses and professional organizations. His students have heard him say, “So what?” so often that they started calling him “Dr. So What.” Subsequently, he developed an associated website (www.drsowhat.com) that highlights his passionate commitment to critical thinking and thoughtful inquiry.
The Log is posting grants what were awarded in the last year… Congratulations to Tara Carr, Director of the Small Business Development Center, on being awarded $123,969 from the Small Business Administration for the project titled, “Wisconsin Small Business Development Center” last July. The Small Business Development Center is a program within the UW Division of Business and Entrepreneurship. The budget for the center is fully grant funded. The ongoing grant is matched by UW Extension and partially funded through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. The Development center serves people in a 12 county area including Brown, Calumet, Door, Florence, Forest, Kewaunee, Manitowoc, Marinette, Menominee, Oconto, Shawano and Sheboygan. The Small Business Development Center serves businesses at all stages, from assisting entrepreneurs starting businesses to helping previously established small businesses grow. The center is part of a statewide network created to support entrepreneurs and small business owners through no-cost confidential consulting and educational programs. They offer referrals, resources, and tools to help businesses expand and evolve including customized solutions and regional expertise. Learn more here and here.
The Log is publishing grants that were awarded in the past year:
Congratulations to the Behavioral Health and Training Partnership’s Jessica Delzer on being awarded $152,312 from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services for the project titled, “Collaborative Crisis Intervention Services to Youth” in November. This grant funds a collaborative effort between social workers, therapists, county workers, schools and parents/foster parents to decrease the escalation of crises, and subsequent hospitalization, of teens and young adults. The goal is to understand how trauma affects students emotionally, mentally and physically. To understand how their minds, behavior and school performance are affected by trauma so students can receive better support. Another goal is to figure out what county workers need to better serve the community, like secondary traumatic stress training, so they can perform their jobs to the best of their abilities. The collaborative effort of training staff (social workers, therapists and county workers), training school staff (teachers and principals) and training foster parents greatly increases the success of crisis de-escalation. When the people who see children every day in school and at home are educated to deal with trauma, they can better support these kids and de-escalate crises. Monthly surveys measure the effectiveness of these collaborative efforts. Surveys count how many teens and young adults were diverted from hospitalization or suicide. This data is compared to the number before the courses were implemented to measure the effectiveness of the courses in improving how county workers, school staff and parents are able to handle and de-escalate crises. Learn more.
The Lawton Gallery has announced its exhibition schedule for Fall 2019.
The Museum of Natural Inspiration: Artists Explore the Richter Collection
September 5, 2019 through October 3, 2019
Opening Reception: Thursday, September 5, 2019 from 4:30 to 6:30pm
In collaboration with the Richter Museum of Natural History, artists have created artwork inspired from the Richter Museum’s collection of specimens. These specimens will be displayed alongside the artwork they have inspired in a true partnership of art and science.
October 10, 2019 through October 31, 2019
Opening Reception: Thursday, October 10, 2019 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Contemporary fashion inspired from traditional Hmong patterns and clothing. Ly’s work has contributed to the Hmong American fashion movement and communities by embracing Hmong identity and exploring cultural narratives through conceptual and wearable art pieces.
47th Annual Juried Student Exhibition
November 14, 2019 through December 12, 2019
Opening Reception: Thursday, November 14, 2019 at 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
Annual exhibition opportunity for UW-Green Bay students.