Political Scientist Aaron Weinschenk is being quoted by The Atlantic as an expert on political participation following his recent interview about voter turnout in local elections across the United States. Weinschenk has written extensively about political engagement and has a forthcoming book on the topic. The article, which was published at The Atlantic’s CityLab website last week, includes a number of references and links to Weinschenk’s published work on voter turnout. Weinschenk is an assistant professor of Public and Environmental Affairs.
Students in the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Strategic Philanthropy course announced a $10,000 grant to Family Services’ Transitional Living Program in a ceremony Thursday, May 7.
Through this course, students are provided $10,000 by the Learning by Giving Foundation to give to a deserving organization in the community. The class focused this year on youth struggling with issues such as homelessness, alcohol and other drug addiction, and mental illness. The finalists for the grant were Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin, American Foundation for Counseling Services’ Kamp Kare, and House of Hope.
Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin provides support to people in Northeastern Wisconsin communities during challenges and transitions in their lives. These services include counseling or treatment, early childhood development, crisis services, at-risk youth programs, and self-sufficiency programs. The $10,000 grant will support the Transitional Living Program, a self-sufficiency program for young adults between the ages of 17-29, which currently has a waiting list of over 100 individuals. Brown County ranks second in the state for the number of homeless youth. This program provides an innovative approach to not only addressing homelessness but also assisting in developing a plan to address many of the other issues that come along with that.
The Strategic Philanthropy course at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay is the only one of its kind in Wisconsin, allowing students to have hands-on experiences by going through the granting process themselves. This is the third year that the course has been offered and is instructed by Public and Environmental Affairs Associate Professor Lora Warner. More information can be found on the students’ blog: https://uwgbphilanthropy.wordpress.com/
The Public and Environmental Affairs academic unit invites any and all members of the University community to feel free to join them Thursday (April 30) from 4 to 6 p.m. in the University Union Alumni Rooms, when the faculty and staff will be celebrating some of the program’s top students. They’ll recognize students involved in internships, research, teaching and independent studies, along with graduating seniors and community partners and supervisors. Several awards will also be handed out, including Outstanding Student, Outstanding Teaching Assistant, and Community Partner of the Year. Refreshments will also be served during the program. Those honored will include:
• Outstanding Student Award: Gretchen Klefstad
“Gretchen is a Public Administration minor who will also be graduating with a Nonprofit Management Certificate. She is a high-achieving student who has memberships in multiple honor societies… Notably, she created a ‘campus crew’ for the national nonprofit organization Love Your Melon, which operates on a ‘buy one give one’ philosophy, donating hats for every hat purchased to children battling cancer…”
• Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award: Gina Vlach
“Gina is a triple major in Environmental Policy and Planning, Public Administration and Political Science. She is an extremely high-achieving student who has also proven to be an asset to other students learning through her experience as a teaching assistant. This semester, Gina assisted Dr. Elizabeth Wheat in her Environmental Politics and Policy course. Dr. Wheat said Gina had been “exceptional and instrumental” in making the course a success…”
• Community Partner Award: The Village of Bellevue
“…The Village of Bellevue is a longstanding partner of the Public and Environmental Affairs department. The Village has supported our students through service learning opportunities and by serving as an internship site for students to gain quality professional experiences….”
On an invitation from Assistant Prof. Aaron Weinschenk, state Rep. Eric Genrich was on campus last week to speak to students in Weinschenk’s Congress: Politics and Policy course. Genrich provided students with information on the evolution of the state legislature and also answered questions. He spoke on a wide range of topics, including polarization, representation, redistricting, the importance of interacting with constituents, and the sources of policy ideas. Weinschenk’s class focuses on federal-level politics, but he also likes to show students what legislative politics are like at the state level. Genrich has visited Weinschenk’s class every semester that it has been offered; Weinschenk says students seem to enjoy the chance to interact with a state legislator. Genrich concluded his talk with suggestions on how students could get involved in civic life.
Assistant Profs. Aaron Weinschenk and David Helpap have an article in the March issue of the journal State and Local Government Review, one of the premier outlets for research on state and local politics. Their article “Political Trust in the American States” focuses on understanding the state-level factors that influence public opinion on trust in state government.
Student organizations at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay have taken the lead in scheduling a full lineup of Earth Week events Monday through Saturday, April 20-25. Wednesday is the 45th anniversary of the first Earth Day, which took place on April 22, 1970.
Events, times, places and sponsors for the 2015 observances are as follows:
Monday, April 20
• Showing of documentary ‘Making Stuff Wilder’ about modeling future technology after nature’s designs, 8 p.m., Christie Theatre of the University Union, presented by student Chemistry Club
Tuesday, April 21
• Cleanup Walk I — The first of two similar walks this week, this one runs from 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. with participants fanning out from the Cofrin Library, outdoors near the “Sifting and Winnowing” replica plaque. Organized by the American Environmental History course.
• Earth Week Forum, from 3 to 7 p.m. in the Union’s Phoenix Room C, with booths and displays by campus and community organizations starting at 3; remarks by NEW Water resource specialist Erin Wilcox at 4; a locally sourced meal courtesy of Trust Local Foods at 5; and remarks by business leader and environmental advocate Robert Atwell, president and CEO of Nicolet Bank, Green Bay, at 6 p.m. The forum is sponsored by the Student Government Association’s environmental committee.
Wednesday, April 22, Earth Day
• Earth Week Picnic, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the University Union plaza atop the Student Services Building — with a no-cost lunch for UWGB students ($5 for community members), live musical performances by the UW-Green Bay Hand Drumming Ensemble and the Milwaukee indie-folk-country band Ladders, and activities and giveaways related to water and native plant species. (Rain location is inside the Union.) Sponsored by the student Public and Environmental Affairs Council, the Dietetics Club and the SLO Food Alliance.
• Lecture on Native Plants, at 6 p.m. in Room 219 of Mary Ann Cofrin Hall, with speaker Justin Kroening from Stone Silo Prairie Gardens talking about the benefits of native plants and value for wildlife, organized by Round River Alliance.
Thursday, April 23
• Planting at the University Garden, beginning at 5:30 p.m., in the planters at the University Union plaza atop the Student Services Building. Volunteers welcome. Hosted by the SLO Food Alliance.
Friday, April 24
• A second day of planting at the University Garden, beginning at 5:30 p.m., in the planters at the University Union plaza atop the Student Services Building. Volunteers welcome. Hosted by the SLO Food Alliance.
Saturday, April 25
Annual Arboretum Cleanup, from 9 a.m. to noon — Participants are asked to meet at the corner of Champeau and Sussex roads and to bring rainboots and gloves. Organized by the Round River Alliance.
Questions about any of the events can be directed to student Anna Gribova, an officer of the PEAC organization, at email@example.com.
The ninth edition of Environmental Policy: New Directions for the Twenty-First Century is coming out Tuesday (April 14). Michael E. Kraft, UW-Green Bay professor of Political Science and Public and Environmental Affairs, is co-editor along with Norman Vig of Carleton College. Kraft notes the book debuted in 1990, 25 years ago, with a new edition every three years or so. It’s still going strong, Kraft says, and the publisher tells him it remains the best selling text on environmental policy. Here is a link to the book’s webpage for CQ Press, a division of Sage Publications.
Assistant Professor Elizabeth Wheat of the Public and Environmental Affairs academic unit recently published an article in the journal Resources. Her piece is titled “Groundwater Challenges of the Lower Rio Grande: A Case Study of Legal Issues in Texas and New Mexico.”
Katia Levintova, associate professor of Political Science with Public and Environmental Affairs, is the co-author of a newly published article in The Canadian Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. Its title is “Sustainability: Teaching an Interdisciplinary Threshold Concept through Traditional Lecture and Active Learning.” The article is the result of collaborative, undergraduate research involving Levintova and then-student Daniel W. Mueller, in a project that was part of the Wisconsin Teaching Fellows and Scholars program. Mueller is now pursuing a Ph.D. in political science at Washington State University. It his first publication overall, and Levintova’s first co-authored article with an undergraduate student.
Professor John Stoll of Public and Environmental Affairs attended the Midwest Economics Association annual meeting in Minneapolis, recently where he served as a moderator for a session entitled, “Environmental Economics.” He also served as commentator in an another session, “Income Inequality and Air Pollution: A County-Level Analysis,” and reported on a third topic, “Impact of Communication upon the Selection of Environmental Targets, Policy Implementation, and Political Acceptability,” a continuing collaboration with Matthew Winden of UW-Whitewater and Arrington Stoll of UW-Milwaukee.