April 5, 2021  |  News & Events, Provost's Monday Updates, Timely Announcements

Good morning, colleagues. Here is this week’s update from Academic Affairs.

Virtual Town Hall

There will be a virtual town hall meeting tomorrow, April 6, from 10 – 11 a.m. for UWM faculty and staff. Chancellor Mone, other campus leaders, and I will focus on 2030 Plan implementation and will be available to answer your questions.


Donna Pasternak’s (Emeritus, School of Education) co-edited collection The Bloomsbury Handbook of Reading Perspectives and Practices (2020) has been shortlisted for the UK Literacy Association’s Academic Book Award 2021. Leanne Evans (Teaching and Learning) has a featured chapter in the collection entitled, “Teaching for Biliteracy Development in Linguistically Diverse School Environments of Young Children: What Do All Teachers Need to Know.” The winner will be announced in July. Congratulations, Donna and Leanne!

Susana Antunes (Spanish and Portuguese), Kim Hernandez (LACUSL/History/Comparative Ethnic Studies), and Krislyn World (Dance) are the awardees of 2021 CLACS Course Development grants. Well done, Susana, Kim, and Krislyn!

The Office of Research has announced the recipients of the Discovery and Innovation Grant awards and the Advancing Research and Creativity awards, representing scholarship across the university. Congratulations to all!

Alyssa Geisler (UWM Health Care Administration alum), Vice President, CBRE, was honored by the Milwaukee Business Journal and recognized among the 2021 class of “40 Under 40” winners during a virtual awards event on March 29. Well done, Alyssa!

Swapnil Tripathi (Mathematics and Natural Sciences) published “An Analysis of Shadows Made from Sunlight Reflected by a Curved Surface” in The Physics Teacher 59 (2021). Congratulations, Swapnil!

In the News

Simon Bronner’s (College of General Studies Dean) folkloristic research on pranks and calendar customs was featured in an article on March 31 about April Fools’ Day, distributed by Tribunnews in Asian newspapers in Vietnamese, Malay, Indonesian, and other languages. The English title is “The History of April Fools’ Day and a Collection of Past Tricks, From Pasta Trees to Bathing Lions.”

Academic Initiatives: 

Moon Shot for Equity 

A two-day virtual Moon Shot for Equity convening was held on March 29 and 30. More than 150 participants heard inspiring testimonials by Houston GPS and Georgia State University on how to close equity gaps, and engaged in a discussion on equity-mindedness by Shaun Harper, USC Equity Institute. UWM’s leadership for the prioritized best practice areas received consultation from subject matter experts. You are invited to view the slides and materials.

The Week


I start the week with a Coronavirus Management Team (CMT) Leadership meeting, followed by my weekly meeting with Robin Van Harpen, my one-on-one with Joely Urdan, and the Chancellor’s Executive Cabinet Deep Dive meeting. Then, I’ll record my commencement address, meet with my staff, and check in with Dev Venugopalan and Laura Pedrick.


In the morning, I have the quarterly TechEd Frontiers Executive briefing, my monthly meeting with Dave Clark and Kay Eilers, our Town Hall meeting, my monthly meeting with Brett Peters, and my one-on-one with Kathy Dolan. In the afternoon, I’ll attend the University Committee meeting and I’ll join other campus leaders to meet with Regent Miller.


Today, I have the Dean’s morning meeting, a June Board of Regents planning meeting, my one-on-one with Simon Bronner, my standing meeting with Brian Thompson, and a UW System Provost Council Pre-Board meeting.

Thursday and Friday

The Board of Regents meets. The Education Committee will consider our new degrees: General Business, BBA and Neuroscience, BS.


Center for Water Policy

Center for Water Policy Director Melissa Scanlan has announced the Center will have a Journalist in Residence for the next two years. Dan Egan, an environmental journalist and author of Death and Life of the Great Lakes, has been named the Brico Fund Journalist in Residence at the Center for Water Policy in the School of Freshwater Sciences.

World Health Day

Join the UWM Partners for Health and the Center for Global Health Equity in a participatory dialogue on embodying health at personal, local, and global scales in honor of World Health Day on April 7 at 4 p.m. Register.

Tenure and Promotion Workshop

Secretary of the University Trudy Turner is sponsoring a session for faculty desiring to learn more about the tenure and promotion process on Wednesday, April 7 at 1 p.m. via Microsoft Teams.

Long 2020

C21 welcomes Roderick Ferguson (Yale) and Rebecca Wanzo (Washington University in St. Louis) on Thursday, April 8 at 3:30 p.m. for a Long 2020 conversation about race, gender, and the U.S. political landscape.

Online Program Council

The Council will meet on Friday, April 9 from 10:30 a.m.-Noon in Teams. Agenda to include Cool Tools: Lightboard, a brief update on the UW System RFP on a course evaluation/survey platform, and federal regulations on distance education. The meeting is open to all. If you have not attended previously, email Laura Pedrick at lpedrick@uwm.edu to be added to the Teams meeting.

Asian Celebrations: India

Vinaya Valsan (Physics) will take us on a tour of India, her home country, on Friday, April 9 at 7 p.m.


Learn what’s new in spatial data analytics April 12-16. Register for various activities including hands-on workshops, presentations, and keynote address by Yolanda Chioma Richardson-Albert.

414 for UWM: Day of Giving

UWM’s first-ever university-wide Day of Giving is Wednesday, April 14. Alumni, friends, faculty, and staff are invited to make a gift to the Chancellor’s Student Success Fund or to any part of UWM between now and April 14 at dayofgiving.uwm.edu. Then, take a selfie with Flat Pounce and share on social media to encourage others to give (#414forUWM).

Judges Sought for Virtual Undergraduate Research Symposium  

The Office of Undergraduate Research seeks faculty, academic staff, and graduate students willing to serve as judges for our Virtual Undergraduate Research Symposium on Friday, April 16. Asynchronous presentations can be judged any time that day, and synchronous presentations will be scheduled 1-3 p.m. Those interested can fill out this short form.

A Conversation with Michael Fenlon

Michael Fenlon, UWM alum and Chief People Officer at PwC (formerly Price Waterhouse Coopers), will join Chancellor Mone on Tuesday, April 27 at 1 p.m. for a virtual discussion on digital upskilling and the workforce of the future, inclusive leadership, talent acquisition and diversity, and innovation in higher education. Registration.

Data Science and Predictive Modelling Hackathon

Sahana Goswami (Master of Urban Planning, 2014) is promoting participation in the Wave2Web Hack, sponsored by her firm, WRI India. Applications are invited from students, professionals, and start-ups from all over the world interested in developing a proof-of-concept algorithm to forecast near real-time reservoir water availability and a prototype dashboard for associated visualization. The best three teams will be selected, with a top prize of $30,000. Deadline for registrations and team formation is April 30.


Cambridge did it again . . . but at a different river.

Take care,


Johannes Britz

Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs