Tag: Public Administration

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.



UWGB Philanthropy Club makes strides with ‘Steps to Make a Difference Walk’

top-steps-differenceMore than 100 walkers raised $4,658 to be shared among four local charities in the Steps to Make a Difference Walk last Saturday, April 11. House of Hope, myTeam Triumph, Kenya Help, and Live54218 will benefit. The total includes a $2000 matching grant from the Giving 2.0 Foundation. The Phoenix Philanthropy Club members organized the event as part of their annual service project. The event raises money for local nonprofit organizations, and gives students — many of them Public Administration majors who are pursuing nonprofit management careers — leadership experience.

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Photos submitted by Lora Warner

The votes are in: Koepke successful as Green Bay Mayor’s office intern

vanya-koepke-topFor UW-Green Bay student Vanya Koepke, a meeting over coffee might have helped to solidify his future career.

“I actually had the chance to get coffee with my professor, Dr. Weinschenk, and his good friend, Andy Rosendahl last semester,” said Koepke, “Andy Rosendahl just happens to be the Green Bay Mayor’s Chief of Staff.”

The conversation sparked a desire in Koepke to become even more involved.

“After talking with him I was just really inspired to dive into this as soon as possible,” he said.

A series of events after this initial meeting led Koepke, a double major in Political Science and Public Administration, to accept an internship as an assistant to the Mayor’s Chief of Staff. (Above, Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt and Koepke show their Phoenix pride). Koepke, who is also the UW-Green Bay Student Government Association President, began the internship in January 2015.

As an assistant to the Mayor’s Chief of Staff, Koepke’s main job is to work on the State of the City address that the mayor gives annually in March.

“I’ve been doing a lot of research trying to find facts and various stats that we can beef up the State of the City with,” he said, “It’s also an election year, so you’re trying to be creative with setting a message or tone that could resonate with the voters later on in April.”

This internship is Koepke’s second. He previously interned in the De Pere Planning and Zoning Department, where he compiled the sustainability report.

“I put that together and presented it to the city administrators and staff at the end of my internship. It was very rewarding.”

Koepke will be graduating in May 2015 and hoped to further enhance his education by taking on this new opportunity during the spring semester.

“I knew that it was my last semester and I could choose to sit in five classes or I could build off of the great experience I had at the De Pere internship last semester and get out,” he said, “So I figured, why not get out into the real world and get that hands-on experience during my last semester here.”

This experience translates directly into what Koepke plans to do in the future.

“My hope is to work as a staffer at the capitol in Madison for five or six years,” he said, “My ultimate goal is to run for office. I’d like to run for state assembly or later on House of Representatives.”

Koepke feels that when UW-Green Bay students pursue internships they not only set themselves apart, but also build a stronger Green Bay community.

“I think if we get them connected with an internship in the greater Green Bay area, that will motivate them even more to not only explore the possibilities of getting a career here but also settling down here and raising their family here, and maybe retiring here one day,” he said, “So it’s really important for us to retain our talented students. And second, I think is just to get that real world experience. To take what you’ve learned in class and show ‘Hey, I can apply this to various parts out in my vocation.’ So I think that those are the two key areas for that.”

For Koepke, the experience itself has been positive.

“I’m really enjoying it,” he said, “I would recommend it to anyone else.”

Story by Katelyn Staaben, editorial intern, Marketing and University Communication
Photo submitted

Next ‘After Thoughts’ is Prof. Warner on March 3

Associate Prof. Lora Warner will speak about her research into the quality of life in Brown County during the University’s next After Thoughts event Tuesday, March 3. The Public Administration faculty member was principal investigator for the Leading Indicators for Excellence (LIFE) Study, which looked at 10 key indicators in three different communities. The program begins with a 5 p.m. reception, followed by Warner’s talk at 5:45 p.m. in the Grand Foyer of the Weidner Center. Advance registration is recommended. The cost of each program is $14. For details.

UW-Green Bay helps veteran transition from soldier to student

spude-top-storyIt is hard to imagine that someone who went through extensive physical and mental training, and served in high-stress situations, would be intimidated by a computer and keyboard.

But for Jared Spude, a Political Science and Public Administration major, who served four years of active duty with the 101st Airborne Division of the U.S. Army, and many other veterans who return to a University setting, that was the case.

“Being in the Army for four years and then coming back to school and thinking about writing papers scared the daylights out of me,” he said.

Originally from Brussels, Wis., Spude graduated from Southern Door High School in 2008 and immediately joined the Army. After serving two years at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and completing secondary job training, he was deployed to the Nangarhar Province of Afghanistan from August 2010 to 2011.

Spude left active duty in November 2011 and started at UW-Green Bay just two months later. He says the welcoming nature of the UW-Green Bay campus community helped to make him feel at home.

“This surrounding community and the faculty and staff here care about their veterans and are super supportive of us coming back to school,” he said. “I have had nothing but positive interactions here as I transitioned from warrior to student.”

That nurturing environment and stepped-up services for veterans are among the reasons UW-Green Bay was named a “Military Friendly School” for the fifth consecutive year in 2013. UWGB dedicated the new “At Ease Veterans Lounge,” just last year for studying and socializing.

Campus location was one of Spude’s main criteria when he chose UW-Green Bay. He found UW-Green Bay’s atmosphere reminded him of his Door County home.

“It’s set in a beautiful natural environment that makes you feel part of the great peninsula that we grew up in yet its a stone’s throw from the legendary city of Green Bay,” he said, “It is far enough from home to get the great ‘college’ experience and grow as an individual but close enough to make it home for the holidays!”

Spude said when he returned, he had anxiety about interacting with other students and getting back into the academic environment. His first class upon returning was Education 295 with instructor Kim Desotell. The class involved working with the Phuture Phoenix program, which helps fifth-grade students see the value in a college education. While nervous about returning to the classroom, Spude said after that class he knew he’d made the right decision.

“I can tell you after one class I knew I was meant to be here at UWGB,” he said. “I couldn’t have had a better first teacher than Kim. She was so welcoming, comforting and helpful. As I got more involved with that program, the people I worked with have been incredible mentors and friends guiding me and helping me as I progressed through college. I owe them a lot.”

Spude has been involved with the Phuture Phoenix program ever since. This semester he also serves as a peer mentor as part of the First Year Seminar program, and served on many committees, including the Student Representative to the UW-Green Bay Founders Board and Dean of Professional Studies student advisory board. He is also currently working with a political science group to found a capstone project. Outside of school, he teaches joint forward observers at the Wisconsin Military Academy in Fort McCoy, Wis. and serves in the National Guard.

There is one group that helped to make his transition even easier: his family.

“I am lucky; I have a great family that has always supported me and my endeavors and a loving wife who has always stood by my side. Not everyone has that.”

Spude plans to graduate in May 2015 and get a position in city government or management.

“I have always been a small town guy that wants to make a difference. I joined the service to make a difference, participate in the organizations I do to make a difference on campus and in the community and want to get into a field of work that positively influences people.”

Spude is confident that his choice of school will help him get there.

“It is has big college potential with a small town, safe, learning environment dedicated 100 percent to making students successful. I would not want to be going to school anywhere else!”

– Story by Katelyn Staaben ’15, editorial intern, Office of Marketing and University Communication

Faculty note: Helpap presentation

Political Scientist David Helpap, assistant professor of Public and Environmental Affiairs, recently presented the paper “Explaining the Use of Recommended Practices and Guidelines: The Case of Public Budgeting” at the American Society for Public Administration Annual Conference in Washington D.C. (March 14-18). The paper demonstrates why the current practices of certain local governments correspond to those developed and promoted by professional organizations, and others do not. The paper also was accepted for publication in Public Administration Quarterly, a peer-reviewed journal dedicated to topics in public administration.

Student’s classroom, co-curricular experiences pave unexpected path

Student Marleigh FiedlerHow does a shy aspiring fashion designer choose to major in Political Science and Public Administration, develop a passion for providing affordable housing for low-income families, become a peer mentor for a freshman seminar, and lead a high-profile annual event for her sorority? For student Marleigh Fiedler, a breadth of experience and relationships have led to a direction she couldn’t have imagined three years ago when she enrolled at UW-Green Bay.

Fiedler experienced her 15 minutes of fame in summer 2013, when she received a $500 tip while waitressing at a pizza joint in Wauwatosa. A nonprofit called Aaron’s Last Wish has been doling out the huge gratuities in honor of a Kentucky man who died in 2012, just weeks shy of his 30th birthday. The feel-good story of Fiedler’s tip made news statewide and beyond, with media outlets from Milwaukee to Minneapolis sharing the touching footage. And although the outside attention was unexpected, those who know Fiedler at UW-Green Bay say she shines in many ways, on campus and beyond.

Fiedler receives $500 tip in Milwaukee restaurant– Photo courtesy of Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Fiedler’s story is one of discovering one’s direction at UW-Green Bay, of having experiences and influences that embody the University’s 360° of Learning approach and all it stands for. Her story is unique but its transformative nature is not, thanks to a connected learning experience that integrates classroom and co-curricular options to help students discover fresh insights, new perspectives and rich opportunities to learn, grow — and ultimately, to give back.

A 2011 graduate of Brookfield East High School, Fiedler chose UW-Green Bay because of her interest in design arts and fashion design. On a whim (and with some gentle nudging from her mother), she signed up for a campus Habitat for Humanity trip to Slidell, La. during winter break of her freshman year. Fiedler was decidedly out of her comfort zone, traveling to an unfamiliar place with people she didn’t know to do home construction — something with which she had absolutely no experience.

That one-week service-learning trip changed everything.

Marleigh Fiedler, Habitat for Humanity tripIn Slidell, Fiedler worked on a new home for the Desmonds, an elderly couple that had lost their house to Hurricane Katrina. The Desmonds had been living in a ramshackle trailer since 2005, housing that was completely inadequate for Mr. Desmond, who was disabled. Fiedler and her crew formed a deep bond with the Desmonds, and she was able to see firsthand what a difference she could make in someone else’s life. She also met new friends, some of whom invited her to pledge the philanthropy-focused Zeta Omega Tau sorority. It would become another important part of her UW-Green Bay experience.

Upon returning to Green Bay for her second semester, Fiedler had found new friends — and a new calling.

“I could see the impact I was making on people,” she said, “and I decided that I wanted to do that for a living.”

With encouragement and help from her adviser, Associate Prof. Katia Levintova, Fiedler settled on a double major in Public Administration and Political Science. She worked for the Obama campaign in 2012, contacting volunteers, canvassing and assisting with logistics when the president visited Green Bay. Fiedler increased her involvement in Zeta Omega Tau, organizing one of its chief fundraising efforts, and used connections with Assistant Prof. Lora Warner to become a peer mentor for a freshman seminar class. Habitat adviser and Dean of Enrollment Services Michael Stearney helped Fiedler make further connections, and she secured campus jobs in the Office of Grants and Research and later in the Office of the Dean of Professional Studies.

Through it all, Habitat has remained Fiedler’s passion. She returned to Slidell on the January build trip in 2013, helped with fundraisers and became an officer in the organization during that academic year. She co-led the most recent Habitat winter build, a trip to North Carolina in January of this year. Building on her passion for Habitat and her classroom studies, Fiedler applied and was selected for the three-day “Habitat on the Hill” conference, held in February in Washington, D.C. She was one of just 14 young people nationwide — and the sole individual from Wisconsin — chosen for the conference, which centers on advocacy, education and lobbying for affordable housing and community development. Fiedler says she’s learning firsthand about the interdisciplinary nature of the affordable housing problem in the U.S. and worldwide.

Marleigh Fiedler, Zeta Omega Tau sorority“I know that I have grown up very lucky,” Fiedler said. “I am very appreciative of everything I have had — a nice home to grow up in, the chance to attend one of the best high schools in the state. Growing up in Milwaukee, I was also aware of how different others’ circumstances were, but I didn’t have a way to act on it. Now, I just want to be able to give back. I want to be the person pushing for the change.”

UW-Green Bay will continue to be a critical component of that journey as Fiedler continues her studies and campus involvement until her planned graduation in May 2015. After that, working for a nonprofit organization or in a legislative capacity are career possibilities — as is graduate school, where she is considering a focus on public policy and education.

And as for that $500 tip? Perhaps there is something about giving that begets giving. Fiedler took the generous gratuity and paid it forward, using half of it for the 2014 Habitat trip and saving the other half for her final UW-Green Bay build next year. For Fiedler, it’s yet another way to give back.

Five Phoenix named Future 15

future-15-topOf the 15 young professionals who will be recognized by the Green Bay Area Chamber of Commerce, Thursday, Feb. 20, five have roots and an undergraduate degree at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.

The “Future 15 Young Professional Awards” recognizes 15 young professionals who have made an impact in both their relatively short professional careers, and also in the Brown County community.

The Future 15 recipients were featured in a special publication in the Green Bay Press-Gazette and will be honored at a recognition ceremony from 5 to 8:30 p.m., Feb. 20 at the Hyatt on Main/KI Convention Center.

BianchiChad Bianchi ’12, an Economics and Public Administration major, works at Associated Banc-Corp as a senior financial analyst in the corporate treasury department. His contributions to the community include serving on the board of directors for Mosaic Arts Inc. and the UWGB Alumni Association. He serves as a  guest lecturer to current UW-Green Bay students. He is pursuing a master’s in business administration from UW- Oshkosh.

KarnzShelly Karnz ’98, Humanistic Studies, began with Literacy Green Bay as a volunteer in 1999, and was hired by the agency in 2007. The current program manager of adult tutoring worked as a family literacy assistant and a workplace instructor. In 2012, she received the Evie Jensen Spirit Award by the Literacy Green Bay board of directors. Through her work, she has helped more than 40 families with literacy challenges, while supporting more than 400 volunteers and adult learners. Outside of work she volunteers at her children’s school and is a troop leader with Girl Scouts of the Northwestern Great Lakes.

RuhKelly Ruh ’01, Accounting and Business Administration, is a controller for PDQ Manufacturing. Ruh volunteers for the annual Junior Achievement Business Marathon by coaching area students and serves on a sub-committee focused on marketing and community awareness for the Brown County Trust for Historic Preservation. She spent eight years on the UWGB alumni executive committee, serving as treasurer, vice president and president. She is pursuing a master’s degree in international business.

SchumackerDarin Schumacher ’96, Communication Processes, was hired in 2011 as Dental Associates’ first  marketing manager. He helped create a public relations strategy to bring awareness to the importance of oral health in children, addressing the extended school-time lost annually because of dental-related conditions. Schumacher is a spokesperson and advocate for the National Kidney Foundation of Wisconsin (NKFWi) and is encouraged that in the past five years the number of registered organ donors in Brown county has increased from 52 to 58 percent. This personal passion was spurred when he personally became the recipient of a kidney transplant in 2000. He is a former Leadership Green Bay participant and serves on the organization’s marketing committee.

VoigtHope Voigt ’04, Accounting and Business Administration, is an operations manager at Tweet/Garot Mechanical Inc. She and the eight-person team she supervises is responsible for growth opportunities. She also serves as a member of the Twee/Garot Mechanical executive team. Voigt also worked to establish an internship program with the company. Outside of work, Voigt often works with local schools and serves on the board of directors for the House of Hope.

Story by Cheyenne Makinia
Photos provided by the Green Bay Press-Gazette

Emergencies are routine for Angie (Johnson) Qualio

top-story-qualioSometimes it is the life-challenging events that lead to life-altering opportunities. Such was the case for 2001 University of Wisconsin-Green Bay graduate Angie (Johnson) Qualio.

Starting out as an art major, the Little Chute native changed her mind and her major during her father’s serious illness her freshman year in college. She experienced a sense of frustration in not fully understanding the illness, while at the same time, she felt compelled by curiosity to explore more about the field of medicine.

“I had already taken Human Biology as a freshman as a general education requirement and loved it,” Qualio explained. “I realized at this time just how fascinating I found medicine to be. When I returned for my sophomore year of school, I made the decision to pursue medical school and declared my major as Human Biology.”

portrait-Angie-QualioQualio is now an emergency physician (and junior partner) with Green Bay Emergency Medicine Services at Bellin Hospital, Green Bay. In January 2014 she became the department chair.

“Being an emergency physician is both thrilling and challenging — we get to see, and to help, people at a time in their lives when they are most in need, scared, and unsure of what is going on,” she says. “Although, for the most part, it is not a crazy adrenaline rush, there are times when every second does count and people come in in very bad shape and it is rewarding to be able to, sometimes, make a scary situation end in a positive way.”

After graduating from UWGB in May of 2001, Qualio took a year off to work in the physiology department at the Medical College of Wisconsin. She then earned a medical degree from Des Moines University, in Iowa and attended residency at Palmetto Health Richland Hospital in Columbia, South Carolina. She shared responsibilities as a chief resident with one other resident in her third year, graduating in 2009.

“Entering medical school, I was unsure what specialty I was going to follow, but as I decided on emergency medicine, I did envision myself working in an emergency room in Wisconsin and am thrilled that my path brought me back to Green Bay.”

She and her husband Aaron Qualio ’01, (Public Administration and Political Science) also a UW-Green Bay graduate, have two daughters, a four-year-old and an infant.

“I definitely believe that UWGB prepared me to not only get accepted in to medical school, but to thrive there, due to the base of knowledge I attained from the Human Biology program, and in particular the faculty,” she said, pointing out Professor Brian Merkel and professors emeriti Richard Stevens and Ron Starkey as especially influential.

“I’d say my favorite memories of UWGB include meeting my husband, the many great friends I made, and always feeling like the faculty was accessible and sincerely cared about how I was doing both at GB and in regards to my post-graduation plans.”

Alumni rising: Recent grad Boss lights way for others in new career

Every day is a holiday for Chiara Boss and every door jingle is a gift.

The recent UW-Green Bay graduate is the volunteer and resource coordinator for Green Bay Habitat for Humanity Restore — a retail operation that profits from donated building materials and home improvement items to benefit the Greater Green Bay Habitat for Humanity.

“At the ReStore, everyone benefits,” Boss says. “Donors get rid of things that they don’t have a use for, keeping useable materials out of the landfills. Customers get items at low cost and their purchases go towards the construction of Habitat homes in Brown County. I love that each day is different and you never know what to expect. Our inventory is constantly changing. Whether you are dropping off or purchasing, someone else is benefiting.”

One of Boss’s current responsibilities is to get the word out about a Christmas lights collection… working or not, strands of lights can be dropped off at the Restore — 2965 Ramada Way #B, Green Bay. Restore recycles the lights and the proceeds assist families in need in Brown County. Boss has been working with local media, e-mail lists and social media to spread the word.

The West De Pere native and 2013 University graduate, said UW-Green Bay played an important role in preparing her for her career. At UWGB she was able to major in public administration and specialize in nonprofit management. “UWGB played a significant role in the preparation for this job and gave me the background and skill set I needed to work in the nonprofit sector,” Boss said.

Direct opportunities to work for, and with, non-profit organizations while in college, also helped Boss develop a specialized skill set.

“Being on the leadership committee for the UWGB Steps to Make a Difference Walk in 2012 developed my special event and fundraising skills, while raising money for four local nonprofits. Working in various volunteer experiences with the Bay Area Humane Society, Hand-N-Hand, Women’s Fund of Green Bay and Make-A-Wish Foundation of Wisconsin developed my passion to helping others. My most rewarding experience was helping to jump start the Civics Club, now known as the Phoenix Philanthropists.”

A part-time job in UW-Green Bay’s Advancement office also gave her a jump start on other recent graduates.

“It helped me to understand donor correspondence, leadership and fundraising skills, which are critical for working in the nonprofit sector.”

As it turns out, lighting the way for others turns out to be the perfect start to Boss’s new career.

Why recycle? Boss says…

• Recycling holiday lights keeps them out of the landfills. Landfill contribution from throwing away holiday lights poses a threat to wildlife. It is easy for animals to get tangled in or choked by the strands of lights.
• It can take 100-1000 years for holiday lights to decompose when they are thrown away.
• Your donation of holiday lights allows Restore to profit with proceeds given towards the construction of Habitat homes.
• You can receive a potential tax deduction from your donation.