Report to the Board of Regents

Biomedical engineering undergraduates at UW-Madison work in teams over multiple semesters to solve real-world problems. Students recently showcased their work, including prototypes for bone transplants, post-surgery limb compression, and kidney stone prevention. To help move research from the lab to market, students also practice short pitches to entrepreneurs at the end of their senior year.

The UW-La Crosse Clinical Doctoral Program in Physical Therapy was granted the maximum 10 years of accreditation. The national commission recognized UWL’s comprehensive PT curriculum and impressive 100% board exam pass rate, along with clinical and service opportunities for students and faculty to get involved in research and the community.

UW-Parkside continued its 50-year celebration with a record-setting number of graduates at winter commencement. Foxconn executive Dr. Alan Yeung delivered the keynote address, Chancellor’s Award recipient Brenna Eaves encouraged nearly 400 of her fellow classmates to celebrate their accomplishments, and Regent Michael Grebe commended graduates on behalf of the entire UW System.

UW-Green Bay Business Administration major Skyla Aissen graduated in December debt free by creating two side businesses as part of her family’s Christmas Tree Farm. This student entrepreneur paid her way through college by working hard and heeding her grandmother’s advice to make each hour in a day count. She hopes her story can inspire others.

A new Black Cultural Center recently opened at UW-Eau Claire after months of planning by a network of students, faculty, and staff. The new center brings to life a need expressed by black students for a space where they could flourish in their own shared environment. Research shows that creating such spaces on campus greatly contributes to underrepresented students’ success.

At UW-Whitewater, a record number of students participated in the Hired Before Graduation social media campaign. Students who landed a job or earned admission to graduate school before midyear commencement were invited to have their photos taken and posted to social media in what has become a highly anticipated and celebrated tradition at the university. More than 300 students participated in 2018.

UW-Superior held a naming and dedication ceremony for the William “Pope” Wright Jr. Student Center last fall. The refurbished space was named after Dr. Wright, a beloved former UW-Superior professor and artist who was also the first African-American professor at UW-Superior. The goal of the center is to provide a welcoming space and programming for underrepresented minority students.

UW-Stout has collaborated with the Mabel Tainter Center for the Arts to create the Red Cedar Film Festival in Menomonie, which will debut in July. The downtown festival venues will include UW-Stout’s historic Harvey Hall Theatre and involve university students majoring in entertainment design and video production. Organizers hope the festival gives an economic boost to the city and region while also promoting UW-Stout.

Faith Hatch is singing the praises of the 2018 UW System restructuring plan and the new opportunities it is providing for students. This UW-Stevens Point fine arts major is taking advantage of courses led by Associate Professor of Music Timothy Buchholz at the new Wausau branch campus. She is pleased that her performance course Jazz Central Voices now counts toward her major.

Last month, UW-River Falls Athletics was honored with the 2019 Award for Diversity and Inclusion, co-sponsored by the NCAA and Minority Opportunities Athletic Association. The department offers comprehensive, forward-thinking initiatives that enhance culture and student success not only in athletics but across the entire campus. UW-River Falls is the only Division 3 university to receive the award since its inception in 2013.

At its annual employee recognition luncheon, UW-Platteville celebrated the amazing career of one of its professors. Dr. Marilyn Tufte reflected on her 50 years as a biology professor on campus. During her tenure, she designed her own laboratory in Boebel Hall and 40 years later is now helping with the redesign. This popular professor believes fervently in creating a friendly, helpful, caring environment on campus.

Last fall at UW-Oshkosh was a time for sharing and healing. Fifty years ago, 94 African-American students were arrested and expelled after demanding improved experiences for students of color. The campus invited these students to return for midyear commencement and an emotional remembrance event. Chancellor Leavitt presented Sheila Knox with an honorary doctorate and recognized other Oshkosh 94 members as Chancellor’s Medallion honorees.

UW-Milwaukee has again been recognized as one of the top research universities in the nation. The university’s $58 million of research last year explored everything from the farthest reaches of space to the inner workings of the human brain, from futuristic 3D-movies of viruses to the energy potential of seaweed. UWM officially earned its status as an “R1” research university three years ago.

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