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UW-Eau Claire news release

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Tipsheet for week of Feb. 20, 2012

February 20, 2012

Story Idea

UW-Eau Claire's Honors Program was honored this month by the UW System Board of Regents for its implementation of holistic admissions policies that have resulted in diversity among its participants. Dr. Jeff Vahlbusch, Honors Program director, and Dr. David Jones, Honors faculty fellow, received a Regents Diversity Award on behalf of a campuswide team that developed a holistic Honors Program admissions pilot project. The project developed new program admissions policies that take into account factors such as service and extracurricular activities in addition to academic performance and potential. As a result, a larger number of capable students of all races and ethnicities are benefiting from Honors Program opportunities, which are known to be powerful in enhancing student learning and success. The pilot project has resulted in an increase in the representation of students of color in the Honors Program from 1.7 percent in 2009 to 9.6 percent in 2010. (Read previous related news release.) Previously, students were admitted to the Honors Program only if they received a score of 28 on the ACT and ranked in the top 5 percent of their high school graduating class. Implementing holistic admissions requires those leading the program to read prospective students' applications for admission to the university. Through the applications, they learn about the students' academic achievements, activities, service commitments, employment and career interests, and personal stories. All those things help them decide if the student would be successful in the Honors Program. For details, contact Dr. Jeff Vahlbusch at or Dr. David Jones at

Story Idea

UW-Eau Claire was named one of The Princeton Review's top 150 "Best Value Colleges for 2012" in the U.S. The list includes 75 public and 75 private institutions. UW-Eau Claire and UW-Madison are the only public colleges or universities from Wisconsin on the list. The list appears in The Princeton Review's book, "The Best Value Colleges: 2012 Edition," as well as on its website and on the USA TODAY newspaper's website. When creating its list, The Princeton Review looked at academics, costs and financial aid for more than 650 institutions in the U.S. Student surveys also provided input for the ratings. The Princeton Review has included UW-Eau Claire in a variety of rankings, most recently in August 2011 when it named the university a 2012 Best Midwestern College. In April 2011, UW-Eau Claire was included in "The Princeton Review's Guide to 311 Green Colleges: 2011 Edition."

Story Idea

For 16 years, UW-Eau Claire junior accounting major Julie Lilla took to the ice with a broom and a 42-pound polished stone and worked to become one of the best in the world at what she does. It paid off when she competed this month in the Junior Women's Curling National Championships in Madison. The Trempealeau native was a member of Minnesota 1, which won the silver medal at the tournament. This was the fifth Junior Nationals in which Lilla has competed. Her team was a part of "Project 2018," a program designed to build a pool of curlers for the Olympics six years from now in South Korea.

Visiting Expert

Dr. Adriana Galvan from the UCLA Brian Institute will given a presentation titled "The Adolescent Brain: Decision-Making and Brain Maturation" from 10 a.m.-noon Wednesday, Feb. 22, in Davies Theatre. Some of her research relates to brain development in adolescent risk-takers, as well as the role of social influence and peer pressure on decision-making and neural activity in typically developing children and adolescents. For details about the presentation, email

Photo Idea

McIntyre Library will host a Harry Potter Reading Marathon and Costume Contest from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 21. Volunteers will read Potter books throughout the day. People in costumes can visit the library during the day to get a picture taken. Pictures will be posted on the library's Facebook page; the person with the most likes will win. The Potter displays will be in the Grand Corridor through February. For details, contact Eric Jennings,

Excellence. Our Measure. Our Motto. Our Goal.