Voices of Veterans: Capturing the oral history and spirit of Northeast Wisconsin veterans

UW-Green Bay students and veterans Ashley Wiles and Sean Gleason have important stories to share. In this case, they are not their own, but the personal, front-line accounts from veterans who served in the United States armed forces in times of conflict. These oral histories provide a personal narrative to future generations so that all can understand the sacrifices made and the realities of war throughout the generations.

The UWGB project originated in UWGB Professor Rebecca Meacham’s “Documenting Memory” class in consultation with University archivist Deb Anderson. While some students chose to work on the personal histories of elderly palliative care patients, for instance, Wiles and Gleason gravitated toward documenting the oral histories of veterans.

“They have been a part of history and their history is important,” said Gleason. “I want to encourage people to come out and share what they experienced, and I want them to know that it is for the benefit of everyone: historians, researchers, students, other family members, and other service members.”

Anderson’s help was crucial to the process, according to Gleason.

“Her knowledge and expertise really expanded the pool of knowledge that went into the Documenting Memory,” explained Gleason. “Deb also has impeccable networking skills and was able to help coordinate a large number of the interviews, and make contact with the narrators. She is responsible for the legal archival aspect that goes on behind the scenes, such as cataloging and storing the interviews, drafting and storing the release forms. She helped provide instruction on recording and transcribing interviews. She also coached and mentored students on how to best approach a variety of situations in the field.”

Gleason and Wiles hope to expand the physical and human resources to grow the project, and make it a more permanent part of UWGB culture, community and a resource that is widely accessible.

These are their voices…

Louis LeCalsey III – ‘Cuban Missile Crisis’

Louis LeCalsey

Duration: 3:36 | MP3

  • Force Recon Marine
  • Deployed: Cuban Missile Crisis, South America and Vietnam
  • Formerly Tufco’s President and CEO
  • First UWGB Men’s Soccer Coach
  • Currently the Chair of the UWGB Council of Trustees

Claude Bohn – ‘One Hell of a Party’

Claude Bohn

Duration: 3:17 | MP3

United States Marine Corps

  • Sworn in January 22, 1942
  • Marine Raider in Japan, China and Guadalcanal
  • Collected memorabilia and photos during deployment
  • Passed away July 11, 2015 — Rest in Peace, Semper Fidelis

Robert Skorczewski – ‘Coming Back’

Robert Skorczewski

Duration: 3:17 | MP3

United States Army

  • Enlisted in U.S. Army, Communications Security Repair Specialist in 1968
  • Military assignments include: White Sands Missile Range and Southern European Task Force, Italy
  • UWGB Veteran Services Counselor
  • Leader of UWGB Office of Outreach and Extension
    • Academic Staff Emeritus
    • Distance Learning; Lifelong Learning; Green Bay Correctional Institute Associate Degree Program; High School Extension

Jared Spude – ‘9-11 Story’

Jared Spude

Duration: 3:17 | MP3

Wisconsin Army National Guard

  • Received the Outstanding Student Award during his May 2015 Graduation ceremony from UWGB
  • Major in Political Science and Public Administration, graduated Suma Cum Laude
  • Combat veteran deployed to Afghanistan with the 101st Airborne Division as a joint forward observer
  • Instructor at Fort McCoy

Patricia Finder-Stone – ‘B-17 Infant Medical Rescue’

Patricia Finder-Stone

Duration: 3:17 | MP3

United States Air Force

  • Air Force Nurse during the Korean War
  • Served in Greenland
  • Psychiatric Nurse at Cook County Hospital
  • Member of League of Women Voters Board
  • Delegate to the White House Conference on Aging
  • UWGB Distinguished Alumni Award

Mark Brunette – ‘Turkey Deployment’

Mark Brunette

Duration: 3:17 | MP3

United States Air Force

  • UWGB Veterans Club President
  • Air Force Veteran, deployed to Turkey for the duration of Iran Hostage Crisis

Jack Christianson – ‘Flare Mission’

Jack Christianson

Duration: 2:06 | MP3

United States Navy

  • Attended Green Bay West High School
  • U.S. Naval pilot during the Korean War
  • Stationed in Guam and Hawaii
  • Flew 63 missions out of Okinawa

The people behind the Voices of Veteran’s Project seek to enhance the capabilities of students at UWGB to capture the stories of veterans within the community. The intent is to develop personnel and resources to permanently affix the the project as an endeavor of the student veterans of UWGB.

UW-Green Bay presents Susan Gallagher-Lepak for the “Last Lecture Series”

Prof. Susan Gallagher-Lepak is the third speaker in the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s “Last Lecture Series” line-up. Gallagher-Lepak will present, “E-learning: The Train has Left the Station,” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, November 18.

The Last Lecture Series is part of the celebration of UWGB’s 50th Anniversary. Each month of the fall and spring semesters, a UW-Green Bay faculty is chosen to give a public presentation on a topic of his or her choice. They are to convey what lecture they would give if it was to be their last. The monthly lectures take place in the University Union’s Christie Theatre, at 2420 Nicolet Drive, Green Bay. The lectures are free and open to the public.

“Higher education has changed dramatically since UW-Green Bay began in 1965,” Gallagher-Lepak says, as to why she chose this topic. “A major transformation has been the introduction and growth of e-learning. E-Learning is ubiquitous and a desired format for many learners. It allows for anytime/anywhere learning. As a faculty member heavily involved in teaching online courses, I have a perspective to share about why I ‘jumped on the train.’ “

Her lecture will focus on several pivotal e-learning influences that have shaped her thinking and application of e-learning. The lecture will specifically address the questions:

  1. What is e-learning? How much e-learning is going on?
  2. What influences and experiences led me (and excited me) to teach online courses?
  3. What’s ahead for e-learning in higher education (includes some areas we need to be concerned about)

Gallagher-Lepak is both a licensed psychologist and a registered nurse for the State of Wisconsin. She has been an instructor at UW-Green Bay since 2003, and was promoted to full professor in 2015. She serves as both Chair and Director of the UWGB’s Nursing program. She earned a B.S. in Nursing from Marquette University, a Master of Science in Nursing from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a Ph.D. for Rehabilitation Counseling Psychology with a minor in Educational Psychology from University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The following are the remaining Last Lectures:

  • Feb. 17- Lucy Arendt, Associate Dean, College of Professional Studies, “Made to Serve: The Tragic Corruption of America’s Founding Values”
  • March 23- Steve Meyer, Associate Professor, Natural and Applied Sciences, “Forget the Three T’s: Focus on the Six C’s”
  • April 13- Phil Clampitt, Professor, Information and Computing Science, “The Magical Connection between Uncertainty, Innovation, and the Human Spirit.”

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This November, wild rice is for seeding, not stuffing


Remember the grant received by Natural and Applied Sciences faculty members to pilot the restoration of native wild rice, bulrush and wild celery stands in the lower bay? This just in: Researchers have obtained 350 pounds of rice and are targeting Tuesday afternoon, Nov. 17, to seed areas near the mouth of Duck Creek as a first step in returning wild rice to the bay. Adjunct faculty member and environmental researcher Patrick Robinson will head the planting team. Robinson and NAS Profs. Matt Dornbush, Bob Howe and Amy Wolf received the $225,000 federal grant to further the reintroduction of desirable plants in the lee of the new Cat Island Chain breakwater by establishing what size plantings are optimal, at what water depths, and the best means (seeding or plugs). Robinson says the 350 pounds of wild rice should seed about 7 acres of near-shore shallows.

Chancellor Miller to address LIR class on UWGB history (and future)


Learning in Retirement is throwing open the doors to one of its classes that will feature a presentation by Chancellor Gary L. Miller and discussion of the institution’s 50th Anniversary. Faculty, staff and friends are invited to this Wednesday’s installment of the LIR course “Celebrating 50 Years and the Power of the Phoenix.” The session runs from 10 a.m. to noon Oct. 21 in the 1965 Room. Moderator Mike Troyer and a panel of retirees and campus historians will share stories from UW-Green Bay’s development over five decades; it is expected that Chancellor Miller will open the program by discussing how a history of innovation positions UWGB for leadership over the next half century.

Slideshow: Phuture Phoenix Day I, 2015

The first of two Phuture Phoenix Days this fall brought 950 fifth-graders from across Northeastern Wisconsin to the UW-Green Bay campus on Oct. 13 for a full day of tours, activities and fun. The program builds connections with young students to promote educational attainment and get them thinking about secondary education at a younger age. Student photography interns captured the day in photos.

Photos by Kayla Ermer and Kayla Teske, photo interns, Marketing and University Communications

Click to advance slideshow
Phuture Phoenix Day, October 14, 2015

UW-Green Bay Theatre presents ‘Theophilus North’

University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Theatre and Dance presents the comedic drama Theophilus North, a Jazz Age tale based on a semi-autobiographical story by Thornton Wilder, as its first production of the 2015-16 season.

The performances of Theophilus North will take place Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 15-17, and Wednesday through Saturday, Oct. 21-24 at 7:30 p.m. each evening in the Jean Weidner Theatre at the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts on campus, 2420 Nicolet Drive. General admission prices at the door are $20 for the general public and $17 for seniors and students (discounted to $18 and $15 if purchased in advance). Tickets for currently enrolled UW-Green Bay students are $10.

Set in 1926, the play follows 30-year-old Theophilus North, who quits his teaching position in New Jersey and embarks on a quest for fun, adventure and his place in the world. When his used car breaks down, leaving him stranded in Newport, Rhode Island, Theophilus takes on odd jobs in houses of the wealthy.

The title role in the student production will be played by junior Evan Ash, a double major at UW-Green Bay and the recipient of the Irene A. Shewalter Memorial Scholarship for Theatre.

When asked about the role, Ash said, “I identify most with Theophilus, and I instantly fell in love with the journey he and the rest of the characters take during the show…The part I enjoy most about playing Theophilus is being able to project his aura of kindness and good-hearted nature and his willingness to help anyone.”

Theophilus North is written by Matthew Burnett based upon the semi-autobiographical final work of Wilder, the Pulitzer Prize-winning icon of American literature. The production is directed by Associate Prof. John Mariano.

For more information about this event, call 920-465-2944 or visit the Weidner Center website.

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Cofrin Center for Biodiversity shares in $10 million Great Lakes grant

Biologist Bob Howe, professor of Natural and Applied Sciences and director of the Cofrin Center for Biodiversity, and Erin Giese, the Center’s data manager, are UW-Green Bay’s participants in a newly announced, multi-state, multi-university grant of $10 million to monitor coastal wetlands around the Great Lakes Basin over the next five years. This project expands an existing grant that has involved Howe, Giese and more than 20 UW-Green Bay undergraduate and graduate students since 2010. Coordinated by researchers at Central Michigan University, the project allocates $222,000 to support field activities and data analysis by UW-Green Bay staff and students. The basin-wide coastal wetland monitoring program evaluates ongoing and future wetland restoration efforts, as well as fish, invertebrates, birds, amphibians, plant communities, and chemical and physical variables at the majority of coastal wetland areas throughout the Great Lakes basin. Results will be used to prevent further wetland degradation and to set priorities for future wetland protection. Along with Central Michigan and UW-Green Bay, the initiative includes collaborators from the University of Minnesota-Duluth, UW-River Falls, Lake Superior State University, University of Notre Dame, Grand Valley State University, University of Windsor, State University of New York at Brockport, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, U.S. Geological Survey, Environment Canada, and Bird Studies Canada.

Sounds of ‘6:30 Thursdays’ concert series feature Sylvia Hong and Michael Rector

The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay continues its “music from every angle” 6:30 Thursdays experience with a two-piano duo/ husband and wife team, Sylvia Hong and Michael Rector. They will be presenting “The Music Trance” at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, October 15 in Fort Howard Hall of the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts at UW-Green Bay.

Hong and Rector are prize winners of the Ellis Duo Piano Competition and have concertized extensively in both the U.S. and abroad. Hong is Artist-in-Residence at Belhaven University; Rector is an assistant professor of music at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.

In a program that illuminates the power of harmony and repetition to create intense musical effects, Hong and Rector will perform pieces by a stylistically diverse group of composers. Expression ranges from romantic yearning in Schubert’s Fantasy, to the architectonic force of Rachmaninoff’s Symphonic Dances, and the developing ecstasy of John Adams’s Hallelujah Junction. The couple is committed to making the language of classical music vivid for people of all ages and backgrounds.

The “6:30 Thursdays” concert series is designed to connect campus and community to music in meaningful ways. Composers, performers and arrangers perform their work, offer commentary and lead discussion about diverse musical styles and the fact there are often multiple, varied ways to approach any given piece of music.

The 2015-16 “6:30 Thursdays” series features a wide array of musical styles and guest artists, including jazz, classical, contemporary, and “third-stream” music blending jazz and classical. All 6:30 Thursday events in Fort Howard Hall are free and open to the public. Donations are welcome. Remaining 2015 concerts are:

November 5 — “Travelogue” Marimba/clarinet duo Transient Canvas
November 12 — “Piano Per Diem: 30 Piano Pieces in 30 Days” Pianists Holly Roadfeldt and Michael Rector perform compositions by Michelle McQuade Dewhirst
December 3 — “Dragons, Stones and Circuses” Compositions by David Colson to be performed by UW-Green Bay faculty and friends

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UWGB faculty participate in boosting liberal education

On Thursday and Friday, Sept. 24 and 25, seven UW-Green Bay faculty members traveled to Madison to attend “Connecting Your Work to LEAP Wisconsin: A Faculty Collaboratives Conference.”

Organized by the UW System and AACU — the national Association of American Colleges and Universities — the conference focused on strategies for providing he highest quality learning experiences for students, connecting essential learning outcomes to institutional disciplines, and assessing student learning.

The nationwide LEAP initiative (Liberal Education and America’s Promise) seeks to advance liberal learning and high-quality undergraduate education for all students. Wisconsin and the UW System were pilot partners when the campaign launched in 2005. Workshops at the recent Madison conference included Advocacy, Signature Work, Tuning, Providing Evidence of Student Learning, Curriculum Mapping for General Education, and Value Rubrics.

The UW-Green Bay participants (from left, photo below) were JP Leary, assistant professor, First Nations Studies; Jennifer Ham, associate professor, Humanistic Studies; Heidi Fencl, professor and chair, Physics; Alison Gates, associate professor and chair, Art; Doreen Higgins, associate professor, Social Work; Kate Burns, associateprofessor and chair, Psychology and Human Development; and Matt Dornbush, associate vice provost for academic affairs and director of graduate Studies.

leap

Psychologists to hold EPIC conference

epic-logo-web-3It started with a small group of high school psychology and college teachers getting together to discuss professional development opportunities. It has turned into something “EPIC.”

On Saturday, October 10, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Psychology faculty will host more than 40 educators from the Midwest, for the 2015 Excellence in Psychology Instruction Conference (EPIC).

Topics and breakout sessions include Understanding the Brain, Innovative Uses of Teaching Technology, Integrating Research into Your Classroom, and more. A full agenda can be found here.

UW-Green Bay Psychology Prof. Regan A. R. Gurung, past recipient of the Wisconsin Professor of the Year Award from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, will present the keynote, “Cultivating Learning: Capitalizing on the Science of Learning.”

“A small group of psychology teachers from around Northeastern Wisconsin have been working on bringing all the great psychology teachers from the region together for a day of sharing ideas, techniques, content, and more,” said Prof. Ryan Martin, Chair of UWGB’s Psychology program. “There are so many great psychology teachers throughout the area but we rarely get to talk to one another. We’re hoping this conference will help us forge these new relationships and this becomes a consortium of teachers who continue to work together, share ideas, and provide students with many opportunities.”

Serving on the planning committee: Gurung, Martin and Prof. Georjeanna Wilson-Doenges from UWGB; Jeff Gumz, Green Bay West; Chris Hamp, West DePere and Amy Ramponi, Kimberly school districts.

The fee is only $20 and includes lunch. For more information or to register.