February 15, 2021  |  News & Events, Provost's Monday Updates, Timely Announcements

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


Simone Ferro (Dance), Gladys Mitchell-Walthour (African & African Diaspora Studies), and Dante Salto (Administrative Leadership) were recently selected as 2020-21 CLACS Fellows. In addition to their own individual research projects, each Fellow will co-plan public engagement activities with the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies. Well done, Simone, Gladys, and Dante!

Elisabetta Cova (Classics) was appointed the Classical Association of the Middle West and South State Vice President for Wisconsin. CAMWS is an academic organization for Classics (Latin, Greek, and classical antiquity) teachers at all levels, undergraduates, and graduate students. Congratulations, Elisabetta!

Xiao Qin (Civil and Environmental Engineering) and team members from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Inc. were awarded $600,000 from the National Cooperative Highway Research Program for research that will help guide planning, design, and operational decisions related to U.S. highways. The team will develop a methodology to incorporate driver characteristics and behavior into safety prediction methods that can be used to estimate the expected crash frequency and severity related to infrastructure features. Well done, Xiao!

Ginny Stoffel (Rehabilitation Sciences and Technology) has been named the American Occupational Therapy Association Delegate to the World Federation of Occupational Therapists. Congratulations, Ginny!

Michael Day’s (Professor Emeritus, Geography) chapter, “Wisconsin Caves and Karst,” was included in the book, “Caves and Karst of the Upper Midwest, USA.” Well done, Mick!

Sara VanderHaagen (Communication) published her article, “‘A Grand Sisterhood’: Black American Speakers at the 1893 World’s Congress of Representative Women,” in the Quarterly Journal of Speech. Congratulations, Sara!

Jocelyn Szczepaniak-Gillece (English and Film Studies) and Richard Grusin (English and C21) published their co-edited volume, “Ends of Cinema,” with University of Minnesota Press. Well done, Jocelyn and Richard!

Alida Cardós Whaley (Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies) is included among the honorees of Milwaukee Magazine’s first-ever Unity Awards, recognizing six individuals and organizations who support the Milwaukee community to bring people together. Watch the virtual award program on Thursday, February 25 at 7:30 a.m. Congratulations, Alida!

Peter Blewett’s (English) poem, “The Butcher,” was selected for inclusion in, “The Bliss of Reading,” the 100th issue of “Poetry East.” Well done, Peter!

Kimberly Blaeser (English and American Indian Studies) has poetry included in four recent publications: “No More Can Fit Into the Evening: An Anthology of Diverse Voices,” “In Other Words: Poems by Wisconsin Poets in English and Chinese,” “Through This Door: Wisconsin in Poems,” and “Yellow Medicine Review: Women’s Wisdom, Women’s Strength.” Brenda Cárdenas (English) and Margaret Noodin (English and American Indian Studies) also have poems included in “Through this Door.” Congratulations, Kim, Brenda, and Margaret!

In the News

Research by Anne Pycha (Linguistics) and her colleagues was featured in US News & World Report, CBS Television News, WFMY News, KBUS Radio, and KCBS Radio. Their work examines how people understand talkers who are wearing masks.

Kim Kosmitis and Nick Gordon (Sport and Recreation) and Janis Eells (Biomedical Sciences) were featured in a CBS Sunday Morning story on the benefits of outdoor activity.

Milwaukee Athletics

The Horizon League announced a revised League championship schedule along with updated postseason brackets for all team sports this week. With the movement of fall sports to the spring during the pandemic, the Horizon League is planning to conduct all 19 championships beginning in late February and concluding in late May.

The Week


I start the week with the Coronavirus Management Team (CMT) Leadership meeting, followed by my weekly meeting with Robin Van Harpen, an Academic Staff Committee meeting (I join this meeting bi-weekly to provide a Provost update), the Chancellor’s Cabinet meeting, my weekly staff meeting, and then my weekly check-in with Dev Venugopalan and Laura Pedrick.


In the morning I attend the monthly M3 update, I have my standing meeting with Dave Clark and Kay Eilers, and one-on-ones with Kim Litwack and Nancy Nelson. In the afternoon, I’ll attend the University Committee meeting, I have the Freshwater Collaborative Executive Team meeting, my weekly meeting with the Chancellor, and my monthly meeting with Tina Freiburger and Hope Longwell-Grice.


Today, I have my standing meeting with Chancellor Mone, Jennifer Abele, and Sue Weslow, my bi-weekly meeting with Mark Harris, a Moon Shot for Equity check-in, my one-on-one with Michael Doylen, a meeting with UW System Vice President for Academic and Student Affairs Anny Morrobel-Sosa, my one-on-one with Scott Gronert, and my standing meeting with Joan Prince.


In the morning, I have another CMT Leadership meeting, my monthly meeting with Nadya Fouad, and the monthly Integrated Support Services Executive Sponsors update. In the afternoon, I have the Northwestern Mutual Data Science Institute Core Team meeting, I’ll attend Faculty Senate, and I have an Executive Search RFP Evaluation Committee meeting.


Today, I have an Audit Gateway Program meeting and I’ll attend to administrative tasks and complete some of the mandatory training we have to do.


International Day of Women and Girls in Science

All graduate students, faculty, and staff are invited to a screening of the critically acclaimed 2020 documentary, “Picture a Scientist.” The film provides insight on how to make science more diverse, equitable, and open to all. More information and registration.

Festival of Films in French

The 24th Festival of Films in French is rolling out as a pandemic-safe event this February, with five feature-length films and a short available for streaming from the UWM Union Cinema. The Festival runs from 9 a.m. Friday to midnight on Sunday on the weekends of February 12-14 and 19-21, and from 9 a.m. Wednesday to midnight on Thursday, February 17-18.

Investment Management Webinar

The UWM Lubar School of Business Investment Management Certificate Program presents its webinar, “Investment Strategy,” on Wednesday, February 17 at noon. More information.

C21 Lecture Series

The Center for 21st Century Studies begins its spring series, The Long 2020, on Friday, February 19 at noon. Stacy Alaimo (Oregon), Frédérick Keck (CNRS-Collége do France-EHESS), and Jennifer Gabrys (Cambridge University) discuss the relationship of breath to the COVID-19 pandemic and environmental crisis.

2021 Diversity Career Fair

Faculty and staff, please encourage your students to attend the 2021 Diversity Career Fair that will be held on Wednesday, February 24 from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. via the virtual platform Handshake. Students must register to participate.

Spring 2021 Campus Connect Gatekeeper Training

Help to strengthen our network of UWM faculty, staff, and students prepared to reach out to students in crisis! Please join us for a Spring 2021 Campus Connect Gatekeeper Training, offered virtually. Booster sessions are also available for those who already completed the initial training. More information.

Climate Survey

UWM is participating in the UW System initiative to provide a campus climate survey to system campuses. As decided by the UW System, this survey will be for undergraduate students only. It will be administered by the Higher Education Research Institute (HERI), with a dedicated campus committee responsible for campus-specific outreach and follow-up. Students will receive an email invitation to take the survey on Monday, February 22. Please encourage students to complete the survey. Their feedback will help build a more equitable campus community for all. Contact Michael Rogers (rogersmi@uwm.edu) with questions.

UW-Milwaukee Connects

UW-Milwaukee Connects is looking for experts and speakers (virtual and in-person) to populate our Speakers Bureau and Pounce’s Classrooms outreach efforts. UW-Milwaukee Connects helps share UWM’s story with the community. Consider making yourself a profile so external groups can reach out to you. Contact Keri Duce (klduce@uwm.edu) with any questions.

UWM Undergraduate Research Symposium

UWM’s (virtual) Undergraduate Research Symposium will be held April 16. Students interested in sharing mentored research, scholarship, or creative activity can submit an abstract by March 1.

UWM Authors

Reminder: The next UWM Authors Recognition Ceremony will be a virtual, asynchronous celebration that will launch in March 2021. Faculty and staff who have written, edited, translated, or illustrated a book; composed music for a published score or recording; or had a primary role in creating a commercially distributed film or video since the last even in 2019 should fill out the UWM Authors Collection submission form to be included in the event.

Teams Calling

Phase One of the Teams Calling Project will end this month and the project team has given an update.


Will we see the Elfstedentocht again in the Netherlands?

Take care,


Johannes Britz

Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs