November 22, 2021  |  News & Events, Provost's Monday Updates, Timely Announcements

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

UWM at Waukesha: Our Condolences, Classes Cancelled Today and Counseling Services Available

In light of the tragedy at the Waukesha Holiday Parade yesterday and the closing of roads in downtown Waukesha, classes and student activities at UWM at Waukesha have been canceled today, Monday, November 22. This cancellation only affects the Waukesha campus.
Please see the Chancellor’s morning message for more information. Walk-in counseling services for Waukesha campus students are available by writing to Faculty and staff can use the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) for personal and emotional needs. Additionally, there will be a Kepro counselor on-site at the UWM at Waukesha campus today tentatively from 1-3 p.m. and tomorrow from 9 a.m. to noon. This is a walk-in service in room C136B. No appointments are needed and all students, faculty and staff will be accommodated as quickly as possible. The main building, administrative offices and the library at Waukesha will remain open. Staff members should contact their supervisors about working remotely.

We hope this action will give our campus community time to join the wider Waukesha area in grieving, mourning, and praying for the victims and all those persons affected. We express our sincere sympathy to the victims, their families, and those with ties to Waukesha. As a College and University, we want to do our part to aid the community of which we are a vital part.

Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion  

This week, UWM is hosting the final candidate for the position of Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at UWM:

Details about the position, the candidates, Teams connection, and the open forums can be found on the Finalists page.


Distinguished Professor Mark Schwartz (Geography) is co-PI on the CHEESEHEAD19 project that was recently featured in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, the flagship journal of the American Meteorological Society. Well done, Mark!

Colleen Galambos (Social Welfare) was appointed by County Executive David Crowley, with approval of the County Board of Supervisors, to the Aging and Disability Resource Center Governing BoardCongratulations, Colleen!

David Pate (Social Welfare) received the 2021 Distinguished Social Worker Award from NASW-Wisconsin Chapter at their annual conference on November 3. This prestigious award is presented to one social worker every year who has made an outstanding contribution to their field of practice. David was selected for his groundbreaking work directed toward improving public policy affecting low-income black men and their families. Congratulations, David!

In the News

Kimberly Blaeser and Margaret Noodin (both English and American Indian Studies) are featured together with Vassar University colleague Molly McGlennen in “The Poetry Magazine Podcast.” Interviewed by Su Cho, a recent graduate of UWM’s Creative Writing program and guest editor at “Poetry Magazine,” the three talk about their recent poetry collaborations and two poems that were published in the November issue of the magazine.

Sandra McLellan (Freshwater Sciences) was part of a panel hosted by where she discussed how federally funded research trains new scientists, which can lead to new ideas and breakthroughs.

Geo Rutherford’s (Art and Design) work is extraordinary on many levels (as an artist, educator, community builder, and as the Art Director for the prestigious Blue Lakes Art Camp) and has garnered a great deal of public recognition, not only amongst her millions of TikTok followers, but also in a film by Thomas Sawyer, and the local media.


Kudos to the Milwaukee women’s soccer team for their record-setting season, which came to a close when they fell to #2 Virginia by a final score of 2-0 in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. The loss brings an end to a record-setting campaign for Milwaukee, tying the school record with 19 victories, setting a new standard with 14 straight wins, while also running the table as the most potent offense and defense in the nation all season long. The Milwaukee Panthers won this year’s Horizon League Tournament and advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the fourth consecutive season. They defeated #14 Xavier (1-0) in the first round before advancing to the second round for the fifth time in program history (and second-straight year).

Kudos also to the Milwaukee women’s volleyball team, who hosted the 2021 Horizon League Volleyball Tournament this past weekend, after they claimed the title of regular season Horizon League Champions with the 3-0 win over Youngstown State in the regular season finale. The Milwaukee volleyball team rolled out to a 2-0 lead but ultimately fell 3-2 to UIC in the Horizon League Tournament semifinals on Saturday evening. The Panthers finished the season 22-9, claiming their 14th regular season title and first since 2013.

The Week


I start the week with a virtual Clinical and Translational Science Institute External Advisory Committee meeting, followed by my weekly meeting with Robin Van Harpen, a check-in with Laura Pedrick, a Chancellor meeting, a check-in with Dev Venugopalan, my weekly staff meeting, and a Climate Action Plan meeting.


In the morning, I have a meeting with DEI finalist Chia Vang, a Coronavirus Management Team (CMT) Leadership meeting, a monthly update with Dave Clark, and my one-on-one with Simon Bronner. In the afternoon, I have my monthly meeting with Tina Freiburger, I’ll attend the University Committee meeting, and then I have my weekly meeting with Chancellor Mone.


Today, I have my standing meeting with Phyllis King, my monthly meeting with Kim Litwack and Amy Harley, my monthly meeting with Dave Clark and Kay Eilers, and the monthly Campus Space Planning meeting.

Thursday and Friday

I’ll be out of the office for a short break.


UWM Community Invited to Discuss Rittenhouse Verdict

The verdict announced Friday in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse may trigger strong emotions for marginalized communities, their allies, and many others with a wide array of views. Two campus dialogues are planned to provide open spaces for campus community members to discuss and process the verdict. Both dialogues will take place via Teams and be facilitated by Dean of Students Adam Jussel and Professor Elizabeth Drame, the interim special assistant to the interim chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer. The first will be on Monday, November 22, from 5-6 p.m., and the second will be Monday, November 29, from 5-6 p.m. All students, faculty, and staff are invited to participate.

Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program

After several months of collaborative discussions between Interim Chief DEI Officer Chia Vang and Interim Dean of the Graduate School Jason Puskar, the UWM Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program has been moved from the Graduate School to the Division of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Dr. Patricia Najera has been appointed as the new McNair Scholars Program Manager. She earned her doctorate degree in Urban Studies in 2018. Dr. Najera has been with UWM in multiple roles for more than two decades. Congratulations to Dr. Najera.

Mellowes Masters Research Assistantships

The School of Architecture and Urban Planning is offering an opportunity for three new Architecture graduate students to apply for paid master’s research assistantships that will cover the cost of tuition. More information.

Multi-Factor Authentication

Microsoft MFA is live – now that faculty and staff are enrolled, here are a few more helpful resources.

Teaching and Learning Symposium

You are cordially invited to participate in the UWM Virtual Teaching and Learning Symposium on Thursday, January 13, 2022. Well-known author, Dr. Michele DiPietro, will deliver the keynote address, “How Learning Works: Knowledge Organization, Student Development, and Course Climate.” Please register by January 10, 2022.


Our hearts go out to all those affected by yesterday’s tragedy.

Take care,


Johannes Britz

Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs