Exciting news for the UW-Green Bay Professional Program in Education. Early Childhood Education programs at UWGB and NWTC will soon be bridged to allow Early Childhood Education Associate Degree Program graduates from NWTC to transfer seamlessly into the licensure and non-licensure education programs at UWGB. Additionally, faculty from both institutions will work hand-in-hand, designing a course to help transition these NWTC graduates to a four-year institution. This project is funded by Wisconsin Department of Children and Families, Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, Wisconsin Early Childhood Association, and TEACH Early Childhood Wisconsin.
For many students, the transition from high school to college can be daunting. But for homeschooled students, that switch comes with an even potentially deeper set of challenges.
That was the experience initially for Education major Lexi Jasen. “I was very used to doing my own thing,” said the senior who will graduate in May 2015 with highest of honors. “My mom gave me a lot of control as far as planning my own curriculum and my schedule, as long as she approved it. But she gave me a lot of freedom. She knew I would be very responsible and I would get it done.”
After homeschooling through high school, Jasen began her college experience at UW-Sheboygan before transferring to UW-Green Bay.
“It is very different to have your own expectations and then to adapt to multiple professors with different expectations for different classes,” she said, “But honestly, the hardest thing for me is the actual sitting in class. I don’t take notes. I’m a doodler. Notes don’t help me at all. That’s not how I learn.”
Jasen turned to her UWGB faculty members for guidance.
“There are some professors, especially in the Education department, who have really gotten to know me and that has been wonderful.”
Their support motivated Jasen to become an active participant in her own learning and to the betterment of those around her. She is a mentor in the Phuture Phoenix program, serves as the president of UW-Green Bay’s Student Wisconsin Education Association and is in the process of creating an honor society for the Education department.
After graduating this May and completing her student teaching, Jasen hopes to find a position as a teacher and one day open her own charter school.
“I want to do something fairly similar to the Phantom Knight charter school which I’ve worked with through Phuture Phoenix,” she said, “They are very project based and inspire independent learning — very similar to how I learned — and I know there are many other people out there like me. My goal, eventually, is to give students more of a say in their learning, because then they’re going to be more motivated to do it and more interested in it.”
Jasen feels other homeschooled students can be just as successful if they speak up and ask for the help that they need.
“The homeschoolers that I know and grew up with are kind of like me and they know how they learn and they now what they need in order to succeed. The more I communicated that with my professors, the more successful I was in those classes, and I think that that is something a lot of people are really hesitant to do.”
Photo and story by Katelyn Staaben.
Christin DePouw, assistant professor of Education, has been named the recipient of a 2016 Research Scholar Award as presented by the faculty Research Council chaired by Prof. Amy Wolf. The selection was based on DePouw’s proposal, “Role of Critical Race Consciousness in Strengthening Academic and Cultural Identities in Hmong American Students.” The award will help DePouw complete a study she began more than a decade ago. The Research Scholar Award, with funding by the Provost’s Office, provides for a 3-credit reassignment. More information on Prof. DePouw’s ongoing research will be posted on the UW-Green Bay Research Council website in the near future.
Arjun Sanga, executive director for WiSys, and regional liaison Bob Wise will be on the UW-Green Bay campus Thursday afternoon (Feb. 19) to meet with University leadership and attend the gathering that will mark the launch of two new faculty-designed computer apps, from 3 to 4 p.m. in MAC Hall 137. WiSys is the entity that helps fund and facilitate innovative projects at the UW System comprehensive campuses. Sanga and Wise will meet with Chancellor Gary Miller, Provost Stephen Fritz and others, and participate in the 3 o’clock session at which the new apps will be demonstrated. Profs. Susan Gallagher-Lepak and Heather Herdman will display the capabilities of their new nursing diagnostic tool, and Scott Ashmann will demonstrate a teacher evaluation tool. Refreshments will be served; all are welcome.
The College of Professional Studies is inviting interested members of the campus community to a gathering this Thursday (Feb. 19), from 3 to 4 p.m. in MAC Hall 137. “Help us celebrate the launch of two innovative computer apps by faculty members — Dr. Susan Gallagher-Lepak and Dr. Heather Herdman (Nursing), who will demonstrate their new nursing diagnostic tool, and Dr. Scott Ashmann (Education) who will demonstrate a teacher evaluation tool. Refreshments will be served.”
Profs. Ray Hutchison (Sociology and Urban and Regional Studies) and Pao Lor (Education) have received word that their paper “Educational Achievement of Hmong College Students has been accepted for presentation at the Hmong Studies Conference sponsored by the Hmong Studies Consortium (Southeast Asian Studies Center) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison April 10-11. Hutchison (who serves as Director of the Hmong Studies Center at UW-Green Bay) has published research on marriage patterns, educational achievement, and language use of the Hmong in Wisconsin and Minnesota, and Lor has written extensively about educational issues in the Hmong community. And to make this line-up even more interesting, as an undergraduate before earning his Ph.D., Lor worked on the original Acculturation in the Hmong Community study that was part of a research grant Hutchison received from the UW Institute on Race and Ethnicity shortly after he arrived at UW-Green Bay.
The old saying goes, “If you love something set it free, if it comes back to you it’s yours.” This sums up the love affair between a growing number of UW-Green Bay alumni and their alma mater. What’s with the sappy sentiment? It’s nearly Valentine’s Day!
UW-Green Bay has seen an increasing number of alums who loved their campus so much, they returned for a second degree. The Advancement Office database shows 454 people with dual degrees from UWGB. With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, now is the perfect time to share a few tales of love, devotion and hard work in pursuit of their happily ever after.
Marian Shaffer (above and at left) joined this love-struck group when she returned to UW-Green Bay to work on her M.S. in Environmental Science and Policy — a decision fueled by her love of studying the natural world. Her passion was awakened in her first undergraduate ecology course with Prof. Amy Wolf.
“Dr. Wolf was a fantastic mentor. She made me realize what really excites me and lit a flame within me, providing opportunities that forever changed my life and opened my eyes to the most amazing and rewarding career,” Shaffer said.
Shaffer works as an appointed research graduate assistant in the Natural and Applied Sciences department at UW-Green Bay. She feels fortunate that her appointment is in conjunction with and supported by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, where she has been working as a biological science technician since 2013.
Not only did UW-Green Bay open doors for Shaffer professionally, but romantically too. She says she met the love of her life while working on her master’s degree.
“He is one of the best things to ever come into my life,” she says. “Not only were we lucky enough to study and grow together during our time at UWGB, we were blessed to get jobs at the same conservation agency. Together, we are working to protect and conserve the habitat and animals in our beautiful Great Lakes.
Barbara Feeney is a two-time UW-Green Bay alum who left a piece of her heart on campus as an undergraduate and returned to capture the love she felt the first time around. Feeney earned her B.S. in Human Development and Urban Studies and returned to work on her Master’s in Administrative Science-Policy and Planning. She started at UW-Green Bay when the campus was transitioning from being a two-year college to a four-year college. Feeney was attracted by the unique identity the University was claiming for itself.
“At the time I started my master’s degree, I was living in Sturgeon Bay, and had two young children. So for me UW-Green Bay was the most practical choice,” Feeney said. Feeney ended up adoring the interdisciplinary education she received from UW-Green Bay, each time.
“I had so many great professors and classes,” she says. “Looking back from the vantage point of 40 years, I am grateful for the single classes I took in art history, pottery and poetry. I knew at the time that I was not going to major in those areas and took the classes out of interest, but exposure to those disciplines has enriched my life.”
And now she is thankful.
“I am so grateful for my education,” she says. “It allowed me to have a career that was interesting and challenging. Most days, I woke up looking forward to the day’s work ahead of me. When you think about it that is really kind of amazing.”
Ben Markowski also became a member of the beloved two-timers club. Markowski chose the University for his undergraduate and master’s studies because of the beautiful campus and the distinguished Education program.
“I loved the Education program and its faculty. Tim Kaufman, Steve Kimball, and James Coates were professors who really stuck out to me, they showed me the educational light,” Markowski said.
Markowski has a soft place in his heart for UW-Green Bay. He admits that during his time on campus, he learned to be himself, an important lesson that has served him well. His studies at UW-Green Bay gave him valuable work experience in the classroom. When he started teaching as a bilingual kindergarten teacher at Danz Elementary in Green Bay, he was well prepared.
“I am definitely living my happily ever after thanks to UWGB,” Markowski said.
So the old adage rings true, “Do what you love and never work a day in your life,” especially for these lucky in love UW-Green Bay alums!
— Story by Daniele Frechette.
Education Chair and Associate Prof. Tim Kaufman lent his expertise recently to a pair of Green Bay Press-Gazette stories on the issue of school report cards and poverty. Kaufman was quoted in Sunday’s (Jan. 25) cover story that found poor and minority students are more likely to attend what are termed “failing” schools than their more affluent courterparts. “These data point at an issue that is outside of schools’ control,” Kaufman said, “… Poverty often trumps good teaching.” Kaufman also was quoted in a Monday follow-up story that looks at the successes of the relatively affluent — and high-performing — Wrightstown Middle School. “For schools with less poverty,” Kaufman said, “the report cards may be a truer indication of teaching and learning.”
The U.S. Department of Education will release a much-anticipated outline of its college ratings system on Friday, according to several sources familiar with the department’s plans. Institution names will be omitted to protect the innocent, but the reveal is expected to show how the feds will go about structuring their system, which President Obama announced in August 2013. For more, see the online news site Inside Higher Ed.
We told you here recently about Assistant Prof. Aurora Cortes’ new “Working and Communicating with Hispanic Parents of Young Children” course, which is making a difference for families (and the Education students they work with) at the Casa Alba resource center in Green Bay. Thursday, WBAY, Channel 2 reporter Kristyn Allen tagged along for the class’ last meeting at Casa Alba this semester, speaking with Cortes, students, the center’s director and a local parent about the impact the course has made. You can check out that story, as well as our UW-Green Bay News feature, by clicking the links:
WBAY, Channel 2
UW-Green Bay News