Tag: Outstanding Student Award


UW-Green Bay named ‘Military Friendly’ again … and vet reminds campus to ‘celebrate daily’

For the seventh consecutive year, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay has earned the 2016 Military Friendly® School designation. The designation reflects positive marks in ten categories including military support on campus, graduation and employment outcomes, military spouse policies, and more.

“It is definitely an honor to be considered a Military Friendly institution,” says Elaina Koltz, UWGB’s Veterans Services adviser. “Not many will understand exactly what these veterans have gone through.

“When they sign up for their GI Bill, they present their DD214 discharge papers and I get a small peek into their sacrifice. I see the Purple Heart awards; the discharges due to service-connected disabilities and the long periods of time spent in a combat zone.”

Koltz says that she and UW-Green Bay staff colleagues see it as an honor to serve these veterans and their families.

“When you are surrounded by these silent heroes on a daily basis it is an honor to serve them,” she says. “Then you see them graduate and become successful like Staff Sergeant Jared Spude, selected speaker for UW-Green Bay’s Veteran’s Day Reception on Nov. 11, and you are again both inspired and humbled. UW-Green Bay recognizes these sacrifices and responds. That is why it is considered a Military Friendly institution.”

UW-Green Bay alumnus Spude is a staff sergeant in the U.S. Army and Wisconsin National Guard. He presented an impassioned speech on behalf of Veterans, calling those in attendance to think about veterans and those who serve each day, and not just once a year.

Spude thanked the faculty, staff and administration on behalf of his fellow veterans for “going above and beyond to make sure that our needs our met, and for providing us with the tools to be successful in our educational endeavors.”

The following are some other excerpts from his Veterans Day remarks:

“I’m here to remember, encourage, motivate and challenge each and every one of you to reflect on what today is, what it represents, what the sacrifices remembered here today have brought for us and the great nation that we call home. I’m here to remind us that we all need to take a little time out of our day today—and every day to remember those who have served.

“Winston Churchill said, ‘Never in the field of human conflict was so much owed by so many to so few.” …That is what Veterans Day is all about. As a nation, we have flourished because we’ve always had citizens willing to stand up and answer the call to serve in hours of need. Today, we honor our veterans, past, and present, for their sacrifice and dedication to our great nation.

“As Americans we forget too often and too quickly what it took and continues to take to be alive… even on a day like today, we want to celebrate, bringing in a little pomp and circumstance when too often we forget about what this day is really about — solemn remembrance, peaceful reflection, active thankfulness.

“My call to action and challenge for you this Veterans Day 2015 is to remember Veterans and all they have done not only today, but every day. Thank a Vet. Find time. Make time in your days to reflect for one minute about what it means to be free and remember the sacrifices it took. Make time to educate your children, serve in your community, help others and most importantly live a life that is worthy of the sacrifices Veterans made to live in the land of the free and the home of the brave. I challenge you today to find a veteran every day. Whether it is your teacher, your coach, your neighbor, or that guy that sits next to you in church and thank them. Thank them for their service. Thank them for their courage. Their commitment. Their sacrifice. I call you to action. To take time out of your day to stand here and look at old glory. Think about these veterans and other veterans you know. Have some pride for this flag and for our country and in our liberty.

“On this Veterans Day, there is so much to commemorate, and so much more to be thankful for. We would not be where we are today without the heroes we call veterans. Today we have the privilege of honoring this very small and special group of Americans, whose service spans every decade of our country’s existence. We owe them so much. But most importantly we owe them our freedom. And today, especially, we owe them our gratitude. Thank you —and God Bless America.”

Jared Spude is a 2008 graduate of Southern Door High School. He was named UWGB’s outstanding graduate in May 2015. He and his platoon served in Afghanistan. His role was to serve as a master navigator and coordinator from the ground as his platoon controlled fires of mortar tubes and artillery cannons. He continues to serve in the Wisconsin National Guard as an Instructor at the Wisconsin Military Academy, Fort McCoy — which is recognized as one of the outstanding artillery training institutes in the nation. He works full-time as a client services manager for Breakthrough Fuel, in Green Bay.

Spude is featured speaker on Veterans Day 

Staff Sgt. Jared Spude — you might recall his selection as the Outstanding Student from among his May 2015 graduating class of roughly 1,000 students — is being featured again, this time as the primary speaker at the 2015 Veterans Day Reception at 4 p.m. Wednesday (Nov. 11) in the Union’s Phoenix Room. Fellow veterans Elaina Koltz and Lou LeCalsey will also deliver brief remarks. Open to all.

Nominate now for end-of-semester University Leadership Awards

The 35th annual University Leadership Awards Program is issuing its call for nominations. Forms are currently available in the Office of Student Life, UU150 or nominations may be emailed. The deadline to submit names for consideration has been extended to Monday, September 14 at 4:30 p.m. Nominations may be submitted for:
Chancellor’s Leadership Medallions
University Leadership Awards
Outstanding Student Award
Questions? Please contact Tina Tackmier in Student Life at 2220.

Fox-11 profiles Outstanding Student honoree Spude

Fox-11 did a nice job in capturing Saturday’s commencement for Jared Spude, the political science and Public Administration major selected Outstanding Student of UW-Green Bay’s May 2015 graduating class. They interviewed both Spude, a National Guard staff sergeant who enrolled at UWGB after a tour of duty in Afghanistan, and veterans services coordinator Elaina Koltz. Nice story.

Returning vet Spude is Outstanding Student

jared-spude-outstandingJared J. Spude of Sturgeon Bay is the May 2015 recipient of the Outstanding Student Award presented by the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Alumni Association. He will receive the award May 16 at a student award ceremony on campus, on the eve of spring commencement.

Spude is earning his bachelor of science degree with a near-perfect gradepoint average and summa cum laude, or highest honors, having completed majors in Political Science and Public Administration.

The UW-Green Bay Alumni Association, which has been designating a single Outstanding Student Award recipient for each graduating class since 1976, recognized Spude for his undergraduate success as student, researcher and volunteer in service to others. He was nominated and selected from among approximately 930 graduating seniors eligible to receive diplomas at May commencement.

Originally from Brussels, Wis., Spude graduated from Southern Door High School in 2008 and immediately joined the U.S. Army. After serving two years at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and completing secondary job training, he was deployed to the Nangarhar Province of Afghanistan with the 101st Airborne Division. He enrolled at UW-Green Bay within months of leaving active duty in November 2011. He began service with the National Guard that continues today with his work as a training instructor at Fort McCoy and the Wisconsin Military Academy.

At UW-Green Bay, Spude has been active in both academic and community-service initiatives. He has contributed in several campuswide advisory roles, sharing a student perspective with University leadership. Within his Political Science academic unit, he participated in a student-faculty task force that helped develop curriculum, draft the syllabus, and conceptualize a new capstone class and project to be required of all future majors.

Spude devoted significant time and energy to Phuture Phoenix, assisting administrators of the pre-college program with grant applications and behind-the-scenes management. He also gained first-hand experience as a mentor to participating grade school, middle and high school students, and served as coordinator for the Phuture Phoenix tutoring program at Green Bay West High School.

His advanced-level research in public policy addressed the complex issue of state of Wisconsin allocations to local K-12 school districts. His research findings supported the view of many small, rural districts that they are treated inequitably by the current formula. He shared this information with his hometown Southern Door School District and various legislative officials. Spude was chosen this spring for appointment to the University’s internship program with the Office of the Mayor of Green Bay. He worked closely with the mayor’s chief of staff, focusing on research and services related to economic development and entrepreneurship.

In his spare time, Spude has worked as a WIAA-sanctioned football and basketball official, local radio announcer, public-address announcer for high school sports, volunteer varsity basketball assistant, and as music ministry leader for his Brussels parish.



Grapentine of Human Development named Outstanding Student

The December 2014 recipient of the Outstanding Student Award presented by the UW-Green Bay Alumni Association is Jordan Grapentine of Appleton. She will accept the honor Friday night (Dec. 12) during a student awards ceremony on campus, and be acknowledged at mid-year commencement the next day. Grapentine is earning her bachelor’s with magna cum laude, or high, honors, and majors in Psychology and Human Development. Grapentine has been an active researcher and assistant with FOCUS, the First-Year Seminar Program and the Phoenix GPS program, working with Profs. Denise Bartell and Jenell Holstead, and presenting at national conferences. She has been active with Circle K, Habitat for Humanity, the Pride Center and a variety of causes. Read more.

Appleton student to receive Outstanding Student Award

Jordan Grapentine

Jordan Grapentine

The December 2014 recipient of the Outstanding Student Award presented by the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Alumni Association is Jordan Grapentine of Appleton. She will accept the honor Friday night (Dec. 12) during a student awards ceremony on campus, and be acknowledged during the next day’s UW-Green Bay winter commencement ceremony at the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts.

Grapentine will graduate Saturday with a bachelor’s of science degree with magna cum laude, or high, honors, and majors in Psychology and Human Development.

The UW-Green Bay Alumni Association, which has been designating a single Outstanding Student Award recipient for each graduating class since 1976, recognized Grapentine for her undergraduate success as student, researcher and volunteer in service to others. She was nominated and selected from among approximately 500 graduating seniors eligible to receive diplomas at Saturday’s ceremony.

Grapentine is a 2010 graduate of Valley New School, a small public charter school of the Appleton Area School District. She says her career plans include doctoral studies, with the goal of teaching at a public institution and continuing her research into best practices for helping at-risk students succeed in college.

As a peer mentor with the First-Year Seminar Program at UW-Green Bay, Grapentine assisted with course activities, encouraged new students to pursue co-curricular interests and served as an informal adviser and counselor. Her success in that role led to a position as peer mentor coordinator and, later, as assistant to the director of the Phoenix GPS (Gateways to Phirst-Year Success) program, a new initiative designed by Associate Prof. Denise Bartell to help at-risk students navigate the early challenges of college life.

Grapentine assisted Bartell with her academic research aimed at improving success rates for students in transition. The quality of Grapentine’s contributions to that work was reflected in her being chosen to co-present at the National Conference on the First-Year Experience in February 2014 in San Diego, and to make a second presentation at next February’s conference in Dallas. Additionally, she and several student colleagues were chosen to help represent UW-Green Bay at the annual Posters in the Rotunda undergraduate research symposium this past spring in Madison. They presented the project “Gateways to Phirst-Year Success: Navigating College by Building Relationships.”

Grapentine served as a teaching assistant in the Introduction to Human Development course and worked with Assistant Prof. Jenell Holstead on research into the effectiveness of after-school programs in the Green Bay area. More recently, Grapentine interned with the University’s FOCUS program to enhance orientation by offering more activities of possible interest to students from diverse backgrounds. She investigated offerings at peer institutions nationwide and recommended that the American Intercultural Center, Pride Center and the Veterans’ Center here become more active with events and open house sessions for newcomers.

Grapentine has been a chapter president and active volunteer with Circle K, a student-led service organization. She made trips to Louisiana and Alabama with the campus chapter of Habitat for Humanity, and worked at a camp in Wisconsin Dells serving individuals with disabilities. Other volunteer involvement on campus and in the community included work for local schools, food pantries, the local LGBTQ community, the Humane Society and the Brown County Human Services Department’s Pals Program.

After the passing in January 2014 of her friend and fellow research assistant, KaNisha Flemming, who died of leukemia, Grapentine and others organized a successful series of fundraisers to create the KaNisha Flemming Memorial Scholarship. The newly created scholarship assists Psychology or Human Development students whose lives have been affected by cancer.


A huge Commencement Saturday for Athletics… and the list of grads

We see that Green Bay Athletics has posted all of Saturday’s big news involving awards and honors at commencement, and more: Coach and Academic Coordinator Mike Kline receiving the Chancellor’s Award… Summa cum laude Human Biology grad Nicole Will of the women’s cross country team earning Outstanding Student honors for the graduating class… Four softball players having their diplomas presented by AD Mary Ellen Gillespie before their NCAA tournament game in Minneapolis… And hoops star Alec Brown earned attention for his last-minute flight to make the ceremony and become the final graduating senior to receive a degree from Chancellor Tom Harden. Anyway, the full list of all the fine May 2014 UW-Green Bay graduates who have also played NCAA Division I sports for the school:
Alec Brown, Men’s Basketball, Business Administration
Gabrielle Cassady, Softball, Business Administration
Ellen Joppe, Women’s Soccer, Business Administration
Sabrina Marunowski, Volleyball, Business Administration
Leah Poel, Volleyball, Business Administration
Stephen Wagner, Men’s Cross Country, Business Administration
Chanel Aries, Women’s Soccer, Communication
Paul Choudoir, Men’s Nordic Skiing, Communication
Brittany Groth, Volleyball, Communication
Jonathan Lesniak, Men’s Swimming, Communication
Monica Anderson, Volleyball, Democracy and Justice Studies
Shannon Butts, Softball, Democracy and Justice Studies
Tyler Evans, Men’s Swimming, Design Arts
Edward Gurney, Men’s Nordic Skiing, Economics
Kelly Baron, Women’s Swimming, Education
Stacey Butts, Softball, Education
Lindsy Cook, Women’s Cross Country, Education
Taylor Trelka, Women’s Swimming, Education, Social Work
Paul Malcore, Men’s Cross Country, English
Wayne Clark, Men’s Nordic Skiing, History
Melissa Killpatrick, Women’s Swimming, History
Maria Anderson, Women’s Tennis, Human Biology
Carrie Dinelli, Women’s Diving, Human Biology
Jenna Harrington, Women’s Soccer, Human Biology
Jacki Johnson, Women’s Golf, Human Biology
Katie Mroczenski, Volleyball, Human Biology
Miranda Reinke, Softball, Human Biology
Renee Therrien, Women’s Soccer, Human Biology
Nicole Will, Women’s Cross Country, Human Biology
Lyndsay Zabkowicz, Volleyball, Human Biology
Hailey Feltz, Women’s Nordic Skiing, Human Development, Psychology
Breannah Ranger, Women’s Basketball, Human Development
Allison Goecks, Softball, Psychology
Sam Zastrow, Women’s Basketball, Social Work

Outstanding Student Award winner is Human Bio grad with perfect GPA

A doctorate-bound Human Biology grad with a 4.0 GPA will accept the UW-Green Bay Alumni Association’s Outstanding Student Award during a Friday (May 16) ceremony, and will be honored from the podium at commencement the next day. Nicole Will of Luxemburg is a Human Bio major with an emphasis in exercise science. Her stellar academic record, research and internship experience and extracurricular and community involvement earned Will the honor, which the Alumni Association selects for each graduating class. Will recently was accepted into the Doctor of Physical Therapy program at UW-Madison. For more on the honoree.