Report by President Ray Cross to the Board of Regents

UW-Green Bay environmental science undergraduates mimic the mechanics of volcano magma using gelatin and wax. This student capstone experience models how magmas are transported through the Earth’s crust, including economically important ore deposits.

UW-Eau Claire’s student and faculty researchers conducted a history harvest to gather stories and artifacts from area residents for “Sounds of Eau Claire.” The team will digitize its findings to create detailed online exhibits for this public history project.

Data scientists are in high demand across Wisconsin, and six UW campuses partnered with UW-Extension to offer a collaborative, online master’s degree program. This innovative approach earned the 2018 Outstanding Program Award from the University Professional and Continuing Education Association, the organization’s highest honor.

UW Colleges student Becky Berry won a $500 award for best undergraduate poster at an international conference. This UW-Marinette junior is performing research into cyanobacterial cells and their potential to remove harmful metals from water bodies.

Professor Russ Kashian and UW-Whitewater students in the Fiscal and Economic Research Center help businesses, nonprofits, and municipalities with practical economic services in real-world cases.  The group’s projects include analyzing the economic impact of cranberries in Wisconsin to the value of clean lakes in our state.

UW-Superior assistant professor Dr. Jenean O’Brien is hopeful her research team can better understand muscle and immune development to provide insight into rhabdomyosarcoma.  This devastating pediatric muscle cancer has a five-year survival rate of less than 30%.

Research is a key part of UW-Stout’s STEMM College curriculum, according to Dean Chuck Bomar. The recent STEMM Student Expo featured about 115 research projects involving more than 370 students. They tackled real-time problems in engineering, science, computer science, and mathematics.

UW-Stevens Point’s Groundwater Model Project is a non-profit organization run completely by students. They create and sell models that demonstrate how underground contaminants and groundwater flow affect the water we use for drinking, agriculture, and recreation.

UW-River Falls will join 170 partners from 12 nations this fall as part of the Small World Initiative research program. This collaboration harnesses the power of student researchers to discover new antibiotics from soil microorganisms, which will help tackle the worldwide health crisis of antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections.

Several UW-Platteville students and recent graduates will present research they conducted last spring on the vital contributions of African-American lead miners in Wisconsin. They’ll join the Council on Undergraduate Research’s Posters on the Hill event in Washington, D.C., later this month.

UW-Parkside students Chloe Calderon and Durward Bevis use a state-of-the-art electric research tool that performs chemical transformations. Under the guidance of chemistry professor Dr. Daryl Sauer, they use the Electra-Syn to mimic human liver function and improve the safety of future medications.

UW-Oshkosh student Nick Pierson created a piece of work that shows his prowess as both an artist and a coder. Nick’s interactive artwork allows viewers to interact and control the way LED lights move throughout the canvas, creating a collaboration between the art and the person viewing it.

Students at UW-Milwaukee perform world-class research, even as undergrads. This includes students such as Eugene Cherry, who’s investigating the link between diabetes and vision trouble. Sara Seidita studies how treehopper bugs use plants to communicate with potential mates, leading to a better understanding of how new and distinct species are created.

U.S. Geological Survey biologist Nick Schloesser is a recent UW-La Crosse graduate that helps protect the Great Lakes from invasive sea lamprey. Last December as part of his master’s thesis project, Nick described how we can better protect the world’s largest collective body of fresh water against these fish-killing parasites.

UW-Madison graduate student Carly Ziter led a study of jumping worms, an invasive species from Asia that recently appeared throughout southeastern Wisconsin. These jumping worms can release nutrients too rapidly in the soil, which are then washed away or may impact how plants grow, ultimately disrupting local ecosystems.

A recent Oshkosh Northwestern story highlighted that for the first time in UW-Oshkosh’s history all of its deans are women. Thank you to all the outstanding women in leadership positions across the UW System who serve as role models for students, staff, and faculty – including our Deans, Provosts, Chancellors and Regents.