May 5, 2023  |  News & Events, Provost's Updates, Timely Announcements

Good morning, colleagues. Here is this week’s update from Academic Affairs.
2030 Feature of the Week
Websites are now live for three of the newly aligned colleges – the College of Community Engagement and Professions, the College of Health Professions and Sciences, and the Joseph J. Zilber College of Public Health.
Enrollment Management Feature of the Week
The Educational Opportunity Center (EOC), housed in the Division of Enrollment Management and Student Success, is a federally funded TRIO program designed to help first-generation adult students who want to begin, resume, or continue their education beyond the secondary level. The path to college is not unidimensional, and second chances, as part of the adult untraditional educational journey, are transformative, requiring creativity, flexibility, and affordable options. Therefore, the EOC program is there to assist adult returning students in navigating their options and making informed decisions about successfully enrolling or reenrolling in a college of their choice. Learn more.
On April 26, the Eta Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa at UWM inducted 37 students into the honor society during their 50th annual ceremony and reception. See the list of inductees and read their biographies. Congratulations to this very impressive group of scholars!
Christine Wolf (Global Studies) will give a presentation on a new Global Studies initiative with the Ghana Library Authority at the Delta Kappa Gamma (DKG) Wisconsin State Convention on Saturday, May 6, in Pewaukee. The initiative, entitled, “Youth Engagement Project,” seeks to match Global Studies interns with youth development and education initiatives through the library system in Ghana. Well done, Christine!
Kristin Woodward (UWM Libraries) joins a team of UW System employees accepted to participate in the 2023-24 AAC&U Open Educational Resources (OER) Institute. The institute will help prepare UWS to advance OER initiatives Systemwide. Kristin is recognized across UW System for her expertise, leadership, and passion for supporting students through OER. Congratulations, Kristin!
UWM is well-represented in Sculpture Milwaukee’s exhibit, Dear Nature, on view through October at The Avenue. Curated by Whitney Moon (Architecture) and Jennifer Johung (Art History), the exhibition features works from PSOA students Kathrine Adelaide Wade, Kira Straub, and Patrick Thomas Willow; SARUP faculty members Kyle Reynolds, Karl Wallick, Lindsey Krug, Sam Schuermann, and Alex Timmer; as well as pieces from MIAD and MSOE. Well done, artists!
Violinist Bernard Zinck (Music) has recently joined the artist roster of the New York Classical Music Society. His first NYCMS performance will be at the American Church in Paris on June 25. Congratulations, Bernard!
Winson Chu (History) received a senior fellowship at the Vienna Wiesenthal Institute. The fellowship is for conducting research in Vienna during the 2024 summer semester. His project there focuses on the Nazi police that operated in the Lodz ghetto. He also received the Worker’s Circle/Dr. Emanuel Patt Visiting Professorship in Eastern European Jewish Studies. The fellowship is for conducting research at the YIVO institute for Jewish Research in New York City for three months in 2023-24. His project there focuses on Polish Jewish interactions with the German criminal police in the Lodz ghetto. Congratulations, Winson!
In the News
Yaidi Cancel Martinez (Urban Planning) spoke about the factors contributing to Wisconsin’s affordable rental housing shortage, how the lack of affordable rental housing impacts residents, and what strategies cities are adopting to mitigate the problem on Spectrum News’s In Focus with Pete Zervakis.
Maria Novotny (English) spoke to CBS 58 to discuss the governor’s state budget and its inclusion of a fertility treatment and preservation insurance mandate. She was also interviewed for the Madison-based radio show and podcast, “Let’s Get Local,” to discuss the impact of providing fertility coverage for Wisconsinites.
Sheri Williams Pannell (Theatre) discussed, “Zuri’s Crown,” her adaptation of the classic Rapunzel story based in an African American setting with TMJ4’s Stephanie Brown. Sheri directed and co-wrote the musical, which featured PSOA alumni Aminah Rockett (BFA 2022) and Amaya Rockett (BFA 2022) and was performed at the Marcus Center as part of World Premier Wisconsin, a state-wide festival celebrating new plays and musicals.
Karl Wallick and Kyle Reynolds (both Architecture) collaborated through an emerging research and development partnership with solid-surfaces manufacturer Vendura Industries to create the nearly 20-foot “Wall-E,” one of eleven pieces of art in Sculpture Milwaukee’s Dear Nature exhibit. The piece is making waves for its innovative use of materials and potential for application in a variety of built environments. The Daily Reporter, CBS 58, and Urban Milwaukee were among the news outlets to report on the work.
Milwaukee Athletics
This past weekend, Milwaukee women’s basketball head coach Kyle Rechlicz was honored by the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame as a member of its Silver Anniversary Team, recognizing outstanding high school senior basketball players.
The Milwaukee women’s volleyball season schedule has been announced by head coach Susie Johnson. This year’s slate will feature a trio of early-season tournaments, in addition to five first-time opponents.
The Week in Retrospect
I began the week with Jason Puskar, who will be leading our work group looking at the recommendations of the Washington County Higher Education Task Force and examining our options in the county. The work group has members from the College of General Studies, Academic Affairs, and other central administration. I met with the University Committee on Tuesday and gave updates on the School of Freshwater Sciences Dean search (congratulations, Rebecca!), the Testing Center, and other topics. On Wednesday, the Deans Meeting had presentations from Professor Purush Papatla on the impressive progress of the BS in Data Analytics and the MS in Data Science, both key parts of the Northwestern Mutual Data Science Institute initiative. Highlights of the day were also visits to “Class it Up,” a fun and productive event focused on registering students for fall, and the Cultures and Communities Open House celebration of their new home and mural in Bolton Hall. On Thursday, I gave updates at the Academic Planning and Budget Committee and checked in with an exciting Innovators Expo hosted by the Lubar Entrepreneurial Center. I finish the week with a Provosts Council meeting.

  • Dean of the School of Freshwater Sciences
    Dr. Rebecca Klaper has accepted the position of Dean of the School of Freshwater Sciences effective July 1. As the Founding Director of the Great Lakes Genomics Center, she’s been with UWM for 20 years. Rebecca earned her PhD in Ecology from the University of Georgia and is a well-known expert in the fields of emerging contaminants, nanomaterial toxicology, and ecotoxicology. Her research also investigates the mechanisms by which certain species are more sensitive to stressors such as contaminants. Rebecca received a highly competitive US-UK Fulbright Scholarship, an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)-Science and Technology Policy Fellowship, and she is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry.
  • Call for Advisory Committee Members
    The Chancellor’s Advisory Committee for LGBTQ+ Advocacy is seeking members-at-large from among UWM faculty and staff. This committee meets monthly and works to advocate to improve inclusive policies and practices at UWM. If interested in joining, or to request more information, please contact committee Chair Ariana Natalie Myers (
  • Data Collection on Experiential Learning Placements
    To fulfill UW-System reporting mandates and maintain students’ access to out-of-state learning placements, the Office of Assessment and Institutional Research (OAIR) is currently collecting information on all experiential learning placements that began in 2022. Many thanks to instructors who have received a data request email for completing the survey by May 19.

Campus Events

  • Springdances: Elemental
    Guest artist Alfonso Cervera and Dance faculty choreographers Zakiya Cornish, Maria Gillespie, Gina Laurenzi, and Dan Schuchart stage an evening of premieres that includes dances with the elemental forces of nature, ancestry, hope, and tenderness. Performances are May 10 – 14 at 7:30pm at the Jan Serr Studio. More information.
  • Employee Assistance Program Session: Managing Priorities to Maximize Your Day
    Learn how to manage priorities professionally and personally at this EAP webinar on Thursday, May 11, from 10 – 11am. In this session, participants will obtain practical skills, tools, and techniques to maximize gains in effectiveness and increase productivity. This event is free and will be recorded for those unable to attend. More information and registration. For questions, please reach out to
  • Senior Screenings
    Celebrate the PSOA Film class of 2023 and their fantastic films! Seniors work all year on writing, producing, editing, and polishing short films of their own design. Come see some of the most unique and exciting films coming out of Milwaukee! Screenings run May 18 – 20 at the Union Cinema.

Something Different
The history behind Cinco de Mayo.
Take care,

Scott Gronert
Interim Provost