Friday Features - April 22, 2016

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Friday Features
April 22, 2016

University of Wisconsin-Platteville Online announces partnership with Thrivent Choice

The University of Wisconsin-Platteville Online has announced that it is now a part of Thrivent Financial’s Thrivent Choice program. Thrivent Choice gives eligible members the opportunity to recommend where to distribute some of Thrivent Financial’s Choice Dollars charitable outreach funds. Members can choose to direct Choice Dollars to enrolled 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, including churches, camps, schools and other nonprofit organizations.

Thanks to UW-Platteville alumni and Thrivent members, UW-Platteville Online will now be an option for directing the charitable outreach funds. Contributions will be used to fund curriculum updates and program development for the division according to Dawn Drake, executive director of alternative delivery systems, where the division is housed.

“We are enthusiastic about this new opportunity and thankful that our alumni nominated us for this program,” Drake said. “The funds we receive will allow us to continue our goal of improving online education. Allowing our alumni this opportunity to support us is very exciting.”

“Our organization is membership-owned and member-governed,” said Brad Hewitt, CEO of Thrivent Financial. “Thrivent Choice is designed to let members recommend where Thrivent Financial distributes part of its charitable outreach dollars each year and feel more personally involved in Thrivent decision making.”

Alumni who have Choice Dollars available are encouraged to direct funds to UW-Platteville Online. To learn more about Thrivent Choice, visit

Agriculture students compete at NACTA

The University of Wisconsin-Platteville participated in the National Association of College Teachers in Agriculture soils competition April 13-16. The contest was hosted by the University of Minnesota-Crookston.

Brittany Iverson from Oconto Falls, Wisconsin, placed first among 59 students from seven universities that participated in the competition. Alec Kueter from Dubuque, Iowa, placed fifth; Gerald Hotelling from Arcadia, Wisconsin, placed eighth; and Rachel Leege from Sauk Prairie, Wisconsin, placed ninth.

Other UW-Platteville participants included Shannon Schumacher from Genoa, Illinois; Dan Brumm, from Appleton, Wisconsin; Alycia Recker, from Dyersville, Iowa; Lea Koning, from Ashton, Illinois; and Michelle Cliff, from Patch Grove, Wisconsin.

UW-Platteville also placed first in the overall team competition. Other universities competing included Purdue University, UW-River Falls, Kansas State University, Iowa State University, Ball State University, and Missouri State University.

The contest consisted of four sites where students described and classified soils and landscapes in order to determine appropriate land use based on soil properties. Participants’ scores were based on the agreement between their descriptions and those of professional soil scientists serving as contest officials. The team is coached by Dr. Chris Baxter, professor of soil and crop science. Participation in this event was funded in part by The Glenn Webb Education Fund/GROWMARK Foundation and the Soils and Crop Team Endowment Fund.

Chinese language students attend Chinese Speech Contest

Chinese Speech ContestKathy Zhang and Jennifer Hao, instructors in the Confucius Institute, took eight students from the Chinese II and Confucius Institute’s Youth and Parent class to the state Chinese Speech Contest at UW-Milwaukee. 

Confucius Institute instructors and college students performed Tai Chi while the youth students performed a song with movement during the closing ceremony.

Students who attended include Danby Hang and Angela Yang, who tied with second place; Donghee Won placed third; Adam Starr placed fourth. Attendees from the youth class include Seth Wilson, Eagan Reeder and Abdul Ul-Haq who tied for first, and Bandon Wu who placed third.

Go Grad criminal justice logoOnline criminal justice program receives top ranking

The University of Wisconsin-Platteville was recently recognized as one of the 2015-16 Best Master’s Programs in Criminal Justice by

“Our 100-percent online criminal justice program offers students a high-quality graduate education at an affordable cost,” said Dr. Cheryl Banachowski-Fuller, program director for UW-Platteville’s online criminal justice programs. “The flexibility of the program allows it to fit into the lives of busy students’ schedules. We feel this is important to ensure our students have continued success and satisfaction.”

Schools were evaluated and ranked by based on the number of online graduate degrees available in a related subject area, graduate tuition, availability of academic and career counseling services, and the availability of job placement services.

“It was important to highlight institutions which are contributing to a peaceful, law-abiding society,” said Dan Schuessler, CEO and founder of Go Grad. “There are now over one million jobs in our economy that revolve around criminal justice, so these institutions are generating quality growth in a very necessary and growing field.”

Berg presents at library conference

John Berg, coordinator of public services at the Karrmann Library, recently gave a presentation at the Midwest Interlibrary Loan Conference in Dubuque, Iowa. Approximately 40 private colleges and universities were represented at the one-day conference.

The presentation focused on some ways that university and local public libraries can best serve distance education students. It has become increasingly popular for members in each community to enroll in online classes that require library materials not owned at the local level. The big question is how to serve these specialized needs with limited resources and personnel. The first part of the presentation demonstrated how a typical university library serves its distance education patrons and provides research materials in a timely fashion. Resource utilities such as ILLiad, Resource Sharing within Primo and other traditional library services like CHAT and email were demonstrated and discussed as the main feature. Secondly, and with more of an audience participation, he considered how a small public library can offer similar educational materials to patrons. Issues such as staffing, budget and mission were addressed from small library perspectives. 

Attendees were encouraged to volunteer their experiences, frustrations, desires, successes and failures in serving this growing portion of society.

Forum to explore fight for the Supreme Court

The Department of Social Sciences is sponsoring a forum on Monday, April 25 on the Fight for the Future of the Supreme Court. The event will be held from 5-6:30 p.m. in Doudna Hall Room 136.

Dr. John Rink and Dr. Adrienne Jones will be providing historical and current context for the post-Antonin Scalia Supreme Court battle that is being waged.

The event is free and open to the public.

Pre-Veterinary Club Attends APVMA Symposium

Pre-vet symposiumThe Pre-Veterinary Club at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville recently attended the annual American Pre-Veterinary Medical Association Symposium at Purdue University. At this event, pre-veterinary students from around the nation had the opportunity to attend various lectures and wet labs related to veterinary medicine, as well as meet and talk with specific veterinary colleges about their programs.

"The symposium gave me the opportunity to talk with veterinary students that have been in my shoes,” said Stephanie Galason, Pre-Veterinary Club president. “The students were able to give me advice on what it takes to get into veterinary school and the transition from undergraduate to graduate level courses."

While at the symposium, students were able to network with other students and industry professionals. Many U.S. and foreign veterinary school representatives attended the event to recruit students and provide information on their specific school. "I had a great time at the symposium, and met two students who I will be attending veterinary school with at UW-Madison next year," said Zach Hofacker.

"Going to the APVMA Symposium gave me the opportunity to explore the different veterinary school options that are available to me," explained Andrea Wilson. "I also enjoyed talking to the vet school representatives and getting an inside look at my top veterinary school choices."

“Attending the APVMA Symposium is an excellent opportunity for our students to gain exposure to the vast career options available to graduates of veterinary school, including private practice, research, teaching, and regulatory medicine,” said Dr. Krista Hardyman, Pre-Veterinary Club advisor.

The symposium's hands-on labs taught students different skills, including suture patterns and learning about different species' anatomy through necropsy. Students also attended lectures given by professionals who have made significant contributions to the profession. These lectures covered a variety of topics including, veterinary school preparation, exotic and zoo animal medicine, poultry medicine and bovine medicine. These lectures also informed students about the different career paths a veterinarian can take and the important role they have in today's society.

"The symposium has opened my eyes to what the veterinary field has to offer. It has shown me that a veterinarian's role goes far beyond just giving vaccines to cats and dogs," said Michael Krueger.

The Pre-Veterinary Club would like to thank The Glenn Webb Education Fund/The GROWMARK Foundation for their financial support. The club would also like to thank the campus community for supporting ITS fundraising efforts this year. With these funds, they were able to take 29 students and one advisor to this event.


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