December 14, 2020  |  News & Events, Provost's Monday Updates, Timely Announcements

Good morning, colleagues. Here is the last update from Academic Affairs for 2020. I’m sure we’ll all be relieved to put this very difficult year behind us. My next update will be on January 11 (updated from January 6).

Spring 2021 Semester Plans 

UWM’s plans for the start of Spring 2021 semester have not changed. We plan to start the spring semester as we started the fall semester with a mix of face-to-face, hybrid, and online courses. The spring academic calendar also remains unchanged, including Spring Recess scheduled the week of March 21. Although we do not plan on class format changes for spring semester, we are hoping the public health crisis will improve and allow us to expand in-person community-building opportunities on our campuses.


Amy Olen’s (Translation and Interpreting Studies) poetry was published last week in World Literature Today. Congratulations, Amy!

Ferne Yangyeitie Caulker (Professor Emerita, Dance), one of seven remarkable women awarded a Milwaukee Magazine Betty Award in 2020, will formally accept her Creative Genius Award on Tuesday, December 15. Well done, Ferne!

Maria Novotny (English) published a co-edited special issue for Reflections: A Journal of Community-Engaged Writing and Rhetoric focused on, “Rhetorics of Reproductive Justice.” The special issue features an article by Rachel Bloom-Pojar (English) and design work from master student Anna Edwards (English). Congratulations, Maria, Rachel, and Anna!

Lucy Mkandawire-Valhmu and Michele Polfuss (Nursing) were featured in the December issue of Milwaukee Magazine as awardees in its very first Excellence in Nursing Awards, launched in collaboration with the Wisconsin Nurses Association. The awards recognize the area’s top nurses in a variety of specialties who have made extraordinary contributions to healthcare. Well done, Lucy and Michele!

In the News

Journalism and Media Studies student Jessica Gatzow’s story on the impact of the pandemic on UWM bands and musicians aired last week on Wisconsin Public Radio.

Mary Bunzel (Connected Systems Institute) and Jennifer Abele (Strategic Partnerships) were guests on UWM Today and discussed how UWM’s Connected Systems Institute is working to make manufacturing more efficient.

Emeritus Professor Mark Schug (School of Education) was interviewed on WTMJ4 about a new book he co-authored, Teachers Can be Financially Fit.

Milwaukee Athletics

With the holiday season right around the corner, the Milwaukee Athletic Department wanted to give a reminder that we have plenty of gift ideas for Panther fans of all ages.

The Week

I start the week with my usual Coronavirus Management Team (CMT) Leadership meeting, followed by my weekly meeting with Robin Van Harpen, planning meetings with the Chancellor, an Anti-Racism/Anti-Bias Training session with the Chancellor’s Cabinet, my one-on-one with Joan Prince, my weekly staff meeting, and a 2030 School/College visit with L&S Natural Sciences.

In the morning, I have a 2030 Update meeting with Chancellor Mone, Sue Weslow, Mark Harris, and Kathy Dolan, an M3 meeting with the Chancellor, the monthly Integrated Support Services Executive Steering Committee update, and my standing meeting with Tom Luljak, Dave Clark, and Kay Eilers. In the afternoon, I have the UC meeting, my weekly meeting with the Chancellor, and a UWM and Zilber Family Foundation Leadership meeting.

Today, I have the Deans Morning Meeting, a Department Chair meeting, my monthly meetings with Kaushal Chari, Simon Bronner, and Tina Freiburger, my standing meeting with Peter Sands, and my one-on-one meeting with Pat Borger.

In the morning, I have another CMT Leadership meeting, the APBC meeting, an Executive Cabinet check-in, a Campus Budget Planning meeting, and my standing meeting with Phyllis King. In the afternoon, I have the Northwestern Mutual Data Science Institute Core Team meeting, a Moon Shot for Equity check-in, my one-on-one with Trudy Turner, and my bi-weekly meeting with Paul Klajbor.

I start the day with administrative tasks, followed by my weekly check-in with Dev Venugopalan and Laura Pedrick. Then I have 2030 School/College visits with the College of Engineering and Applied Science, Lubar School of Business, the College of General Studies, the School of Architecture and Urban Planning, the School of Freshwater Sciences, the Grad School, the School of Education, and the Helen Bader School of Social Welfare.


Investment Management
The Investment Management Certificate Program at the Lubar School of Business presents its second webinar in the series, “The Evolving Role of VC in the Innovation Economy and PE Trends and Themes in the Age of COVID-19,” on Wednesday, December 16 at noon. Information and registration.

Nuestra Graduación
The UWM Roberto Hernandez Center (RHC) is happy to honor and celebrate all 185 UWM Latinx graduates for Fall 2020 and Winter 2021 and invites you to view the Graduating Student Recognition video and the RHC congratulatory video.

UWM Libraries
The Libraries are excited to announce that our Archives Renovation Project has met its campaign goal of $2.8M. The transformative project will provide the Archives Department with a new space within the Golda Meir Library.

Tech Tips
Recent online scams and phishing attacks to avoid.

It’s good to be a Packers fan right now, but not so much for Arsenal

Take care,


Johannes Britz
Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs