UWGB Make a Difference Day

Reminder: Sign up for Make a Difference Day

The final day to register for UWGB Make a Difference Day is at noon, Monday, Oct. 17. The office of Student Life shares a sneak-peak at this year’s UWGB Make a Difference Day t-shirts. Each volunteer who participates in the afternoon of planned community service activities will receive a shirt while supplies last. The soft, breathable cotton blend comes in light heather gray with a UWGB Make a Difference Day graphic printed in phoenix green on the chest.

UWGB Make a Difference Day is Friday, October 21 from 1 to 4 pm. UW-Green Bay students, faculty and staff are welcome to take part in any of the on- or off-campus volunteer opportunities. (Employees are directed to work with their supervisor(s) for approval.)  All participants are invited to join in a celebration following the community service work by enjoying some hot soup and refreshments located in the Winter Garden.

Amenson-Hill, Make a Difference Day Committee, nominated for Volunteer Award

Congratulations to the UWGB Make a Difference Day committee, representing the UWGB community in its nomination for the Green Bay Packers Give Back-Large Group Award to be presented at the WPS Volunteer Awards breakfast and ceremony this week. The event takes place from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. Thursday, April 14 at the KI Convention Center. In addition, Dean of Students Brenda Amenson-Hill was nominated for the Schneider Foundation-Volunteer Leadership Award. Serving on this year’s Make a Difference Day committee was Amenson-Hill, the University Union’s Rachel Wussow, faculty members Denise Bartell and Lora Warner, student Sierra Spaulding, Student Life’s Stephanie Kaponya and UWGB’s office of Marketing and University Communication’s Kimberly Vlies, Sue Bodilly and Jena Richter.

Littig, volunteers, stood out as ‘2015 Person of the Year’

Each year the Green Bay Press-Gazette editorial boards honors a “person of the year.” The board took a different approach this year, honoring “The Volunteer” as its 2015 selection, but not without specific mention of both the 300-some students, staff and faculty who turned out for Make a Difference Day in October, and to UWGB emeritus faculty member David Littig. Log readers already know the impact of 300 volunteers to a community. Here is more about Littig according to the PG, “Connecting with his community is one of big reasons David Littig volunteers. In nominating her husband as Person of the Year, Eileen Littig wrote, ‘His passion for the promise of democracy, civic participation and the American dream for future generations are at the core of his community work.’” ….Congratulations to David, and to all of you volunteers on this year’s honor. Read more from the Press Gazette’s Dec. 27 (page 4A) issue.

‘Difference’ destinations include Sanctuary, Baird Creek, neighborhoods

View selected photos from Friday afternoon’s Make a Difference Day activities on Flickr.

As part of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s 50th Anniversary celebration, more than 300 students, faculty and staff will participate in Make a Difference Day activities, October 23 and 24. The UWGB contingent will volunteer 1,000 hours of service Friday, October 23 at a number of sites in the community between 1:30 and 4 p.m. including Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary, Baird Creek, St. Vincent de Paul, and the Green Bay Botanical Garden. Also, a large number of students will be taking part in the Volunteer Center’s “Neighborhood Volunteer Connection” — hand-delivering thousands of letters throughout Green Bay in an effort to recruit volunteers who will in turn assist seniors and people with disabilities remain independent and in their homes longer.

Volunteer Center director mentions UWGB in TV interview

Michael Schwartz-Oscar, executive director of the Brown County Volunteer Center, went on WFRV TV-5’s afternoon program recently to talk about “Make a Difference Day” activities with host Kris Schuler. He offers background on the Volunteer Center and mentions how several hundred UW-Green Bay students have signed up for this Friday to help recruit even more community volunteers.

Early signups strong for Make a Difference weekend


As part of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s 50th Anniversary celebration, more than 300 students, faculty and staff will participate in Make a Difference Day activities Friday and Saturday (Oct. 23 and 24). Friday afternoon work sites include Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary, Baird Creek, St. Vincent de Paul, and the Green Bay Botanical Garden. Also, a large number of students will be taking part in the Volunteer Center’s “Neighborhood Volunteer Connection” — hand-delivering thousands of letters throughout Green Bay in an effort to recruit volunteers who will in turn assist seniors and people with disabilities remain independent and in their homes. For more detail.

More than 300 UW-Green Bay students, faculty and staff joining Make a Difference Day efforts

As part of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s 50th Anniversary celebration, more than 300 students, faculty and staff will participate in Make a Difference Day activities, Friday and Saturday, October 23 and 24. The UWGB contingent will volunteer hundreds of hours of service Friday, October 23 at a number of sites in the community between 1 and 4 p.m. including Bay Beach Wildlife Sanctuary, Baird Creek, St. Vincent de Paul, and the Green Bay Botanical Garden. Also, a large number of students will be taking part in the Volunteer Center’s “Neighborhood Volunteer Connection” — hand-delivering thousands of letters throughout Green Bay in an effort to recruit volunteers who will in turn assist seniors and people with disabilities remain independent and in their homes longer. Those participating will receive transportation to and from campus. Volunteers return to the University Union at 4 p.m. for a celebration and refreshments, with a short program that includes comments from UW-Green Bay Chancellor Gary L. Miller, Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt, UWGB student Sierra Spaulding, and The Volunteer Center Coordinator Michael Schwartz-Oscar. The program emceed by UWGB Dean of Students Brenda Amenson-Hill. Campus members also had an opportunity to volunteer directly through The Volunteer Center for Saturday’s activities. For details, visit the UWGB Make a Difference Day page.

Make a Difference work day


Distributed campuswide but repeated here for the record: As part of the 50th Anniversary Celebration and Common Theme-Engaging in Public Life, the University is participating in a coordinated UWGB-Make a Difference Day event from 1 to 4 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 23. Employees interested in participating are encouraged to work with their supervisor for approval. Employees would be working side-by-side with student volunteers. If you are interested in participating, please sign up online as an individual or group.

Annual Steps to Make a Difference Walk has a $2,000 match this year

top-difference-walkThere aren’t many student-run charity walks that can boast raising more than $45,000 in five years. But the UW-Green Bay Steps to Make a Difference Walk can claim just that.

This year’s annual walk will be held on Saturday, April 11 beginning at 10 a.m. and starting at the Mauthe Center. The walk, organized by the Phoenix Philanthropy Club, helps to raise funds for local nonprofit organizations and encourages the UW-Green Bay community to step up and help others. This year the Club has a matching gift opportunity of $2,000 from the Giving 2.0 Foundation in California — one of only six pilot chapters of University chapters in the U.S. to receive the gift match.

All proceeds go to local organizations. This year’s nonprofits are House of Hope, Live 54218, My Team Triumph, and Kenya Help. The cost is $15 for students older than 12 and $25 for non-students with an early bird discount for those who register prior to April 6. Kids under 12 walk for free.

The walk winds along the campus perimeter through the Arboretum trails for two miles, before ending at the Mauthe Center for refreshments.

This walk is part of the larger Make a Difference Day, held annually in October. While this year’s walk will be held in April, it encourages the same idea: get involved and help others.

“It’s important to get these nonprofits out there,” said Stephanie Krupski, co-chair of the Steps Walk planning committee, “I didn’t know two of the nonprofits before this, so it’s great to get their names out there and raise money for them and awareness.”

The Steps to Make a Difference Walk began in 2002 when the Public and Nonprofit Management Class originally designed and implemented the walk. The walk has garnered national attention and was a USA Weekend finalist for the Make a Difference award.

The guiding principle of the walk is to give 100 percent of the donations made by walkers to the nonprofit organizations. This year, the Steps Walk received a matching gift from the Giving 2.0 organization.

“Anything raised up to $2000 is matched,” said Krupski. “That is our ideal, but we’re always shooting for the stars.”

While local nonprofits benefit, students do as well. Each year, the walk involves more than two dozen student organizations, providing opportunities for more than 200 students to give back to the community.

The walk is entirely student run, providing students with leadership opportunities and a way to gain experience that can help them succeed in the future. Since 2002, more than a dozen students involved with the walk have gone into entry-level management positions of nonprofit organizations throughout the state. Many students also note the event as memorable on the alumni survey and return to complete the walk after graduation.

“I think it’s just an awesome opportunity to be involved in as a student, and it’s important to my career aspirations and my goals as well,” said Krupski, “I think it’s cool that we have some freshmen involved in it. It’s been great to see their ambitions and aspirations blossom too.”

To register, visit Steps to Make a Difference Walk.

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

Photos submitted

Students, Ruzek featured in Make a Difference Day story

A group of UW-Green Bay students and director of continuing education Joy Ruzek were featured Sunday (Oct. 26) in a Manitowoc Herald Times Reporter story about this weekend’s annual Make a Difference Day. The students were among 50 to 75 volunteers who turned out to assist with landscaping improvements at the low-income Southfield Townhouses in Manitowoc. Ruzek oversees the townhouse project and was able to use $5,000 in grant money to purchase mulch, materials for benches, two garden sheds and numerous plants and shrubs, the story says. “If you saw what it looked like before and saw what it looks like now, it is night and day difference,” Ruzek said. “What’s nice about that is residents feel like they don’t have anything of their own, so by having all this planted, they feel like it is more home for them. They have something outside that makes it feel like their own.” Full story.