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In This Issue

UW-Eau Claire makes Princeton Review 2012 'Best Value Colleges' list

And the Grammys go to ... Bon Iver!

Curtain opens on renovated Schofield Auditorium

Honors Program recognized for holistic admissions success

UW-Eau Claire implements new transcript request process

University's historical photos now easier to access

Vice chancellor receives award from women's student affairs organization

Four UW-Eau Claire students named Gilman Scholars

Students study stream ecology in Argentina during immersion trip

Social work majors thrive during internships in South Africa

Political science major to serve as student lobbyist in D.C.

Forensics team wins 20th consecutive state championship

The Forum to present renowned brain researcher V.S. Ramachandran Feb. 29

'Let's Do Lunch!' speaker to offer tax information

Viennese Ball tickets are now available

Aldo Leopold Banquet attendees invited to hike to event

Open house scheduled for new online degree program

Host friends sought for international students

New alumni success stories

Blugold Trivia

Alumni Links

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Alumni events

Blugold Babies

Blugold Bliss

Photo album

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February 2012

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UW-Eau Claire makes Princeton Review 2012 'Best Value Colleges' list

Princeton sealUW-Eau Claire has been named one of The Princeton Review's top 150 "Best Value Colleges for 2012" in the United States.

The Princeton Review's 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 best-value-colleges list appears in The Princeton Review's new book, "The Best Value Colleges: 2012 Edition," as well as on dedicated areas of the company's free website and on the USA TODAY newspaper's website.

When creating its "Best Value" list, The Princeton Review, a New York-based education services company, looked at academics, costs and financial aid — using the most recently reported data from each institution for its 2010-11 academic year — for more than 650 higher education institutions in the United States. Student surveys also provided input for the academic ratings. Full story. back to top

And the Grammys go to ... Bon Iver!

Bon Iver

Bon Iver performs at UW-Eau Claire
in December 2011
(UW-Eau Claire photo by Bill Hoepner)

Well, they did it! UW-Eau Claire alumni Justin Vernon '04, Sean Carey '07 and the rest of the indie rock band Bon Iver won two Grammys at the 54th annual awards show earlier this month.

The Eau Claire-based band walked away with Grammys in the categories of best new artist and best alternative music album.

On the heels of its debut performance as the musical guest on "Saturday Night Live" a week earlier, the band was represented at the Grammys by Vernon, who gave a shout-out to Eau Claire during one of his acceptance speeches.

Currently touring Australia, Bon Iver also has tour dates scheduled in Europe and the United States during the coming months. More information. back to top

Curtain opens on renovated Schofield Auditorium

Schofield Auditorium

The auditorium's new theater lighting system, energy-efficient house lights and numerous aesthetic improvements are visible in this shot from the balcony of the renovated campus venue. (UW-Eau Claire photo by Bill Hoepner)

A Schofield Auditorium seat-naming opportunity to sponsor individual chairs at $250 each is under way. More information can be found on the UW-Eau Claire Foundation website.

Learn about the status of other campus construction projects.

The curtain recently rose on a new era for the historic Schofield Auditorium at UW-Eau Claire.

A recently completed renovation project in the auditorium, located in the only National Historic Building on campus, totaled just over $1 million. The project was funded collaboratively through the UW-Eau Claire Foundation, Student Senate, University Centers/Event Services, and university and state facilities improvement funds.

Schofield Auditorium is the largest fixed-seating venue on campus, with a seating capacity of 628. It is the setting for major presentations such as the Artists Series, The Forum, musical events, orientation welcomes and lectures. Schofield Auditorium hosts an average of 135 student-sponsored events per year, accounting for 98 percent of its use.

Updates include new seating, sound improvements, theater lighting, central room control, a video wall projection system, and other aesthetic and facility improvements, including improved handicap accessibility. Full story. back to top

Honors Program recognized for holistic admissions success

Honors Program award recipients
Dr. David Jones, UW-Eau Claire Honors Program faculty fellow, left, and Dr. Jeff Vahlbusch, Honors Program director, center, received a UW System Regents Diversity Award Feb. 10 in Madison on behalf of a campuswide team that developed and implemented a holistic Honors Program admissions pilot project. Regent Charles Pruitt, right, presented the award. (UW System photo)

The UW-Eau Claire Honors Program has been honored by the UW System Board of Regents for the program's implementation of holistic admissions policies that have resulted in diversity among its participants that is more reflective of the broader student population.

Dr. Jeff Vahlbusch, Honors Program director, and Dr. David Jones, Honors faculty fellow, received a Regents Diversity Award Feb. 10 in Madison on behalf of a campuswide team that developed and implemented 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 deserving and capable students of all races and ethnicities are benefiting from Honors Program opportunities that are known to be powerful in enhancing student learning and success.

The regents' Diversity Awards program was established four years ago to recognize and support individuals and programs in the UW System that foster access and success in university life for historically underrepresented populations. Full story. back to top

UW-Eau Claire implements new transcript request process

James Barrett
James Barrett

UW-Eau Claire students and alumni now have a quicker and more streamlined process in place for requesting copies of their official academic transcripts.

UW-Eau Claire's Records and Registration office, which maintains the university's academic records, has implemented a new secure PDF option for requesting transcripts that allows documents to be sent instantaneously to their intended recipients.

"Students often need these documents sent quickly to employers and graduate schools, and sending them by mail could result in a delay," said James Barrett, UW-Eau Claire registrar. "Secure electronic transcripts will now be sent within one business day of receipt of the order."

Students and alumni using the new system request a transcript through an online account with the Registrar's office. The process will provides the individual with email confirmation of the request, the sending of the transcript and receipt of the transcript by the intended party. Full story. back to top

University's historical photos now easier to access

Winter Carnival

The fraternity Alpha Kappa Lambda's members hoist buckets of snow to create a sculpture near the School of Nursing building during the Wisconsin State University-Eau Claire's 1970 Winter Carnival. (Photo provided by UW-Eau Claire Special Collections and Archives)

When Gregory Kocken began examining UW-Eau Claire's archived photograph collection last year, he found more than 2,000 photographic prints loosely organized in folders and placed within the drawers of two file cabinets.

Kocken, head of UW-Eau Claire's Special Collections and Archives department, said he needed to come up with a plan to better organize the collection and give users easier access to the photos, many of which date back to university's earliest days.

"Over the span of many years, during which photographs and entire folders were misfiled, the original structure of the collection deteriorated and reached a point where access to the prints was restricted and finding images became increasingly difficult," Kocken said. Full story. back to top

Vice chancellor receives award from women's student affairs organization

Beth Hellwig
Dr. Beth Hellwig

UW-Eau Claire's vice chancellor for student affairs is the recipient of a prestigious award from a national organization that supports and advocates for women working in higher education.

Dr. Beth Hellwig will receive the Dr. Zenobia Hikes Award from the NASPA Center for Scholarship, Research and Professional Development for Women (Center for Women). Hellwig will be recognized March 12 in Phoenix, Ariz., at the 2012 NASPA national conference during a reception hosted by the Center for Women, Women in Student Affairs Knowledge Community and Alice Manicur Symposium Alumnae.

The award honors NASPA members who have worked full time in students affairs for at least 10 years and who have demonstrated a commitment to the advancement of women in higher education and student affairs through mentoring and professional development activities; have strong evidence of contributions to the development of students as engaged citizens and ethical leaders; and have a record of community service to the profession and locally. Full story. back to top

Four UW-Eau Claire students named Gilman Scholars

Darcy Behringer Kelsey Freymiller
Darcy Behringer
Kelsey Freymiller
Kathryn Jensen Collin Weyers
Kathryn Jensen
Collin Weyers

Four UW-Eau Claire students were awarded scholarships through the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program to study abroad for the spring 2012 semester.

Freshman Darcy Behringer, River Falls, was awarded $3,000 to study at Southern Cross University in Lismore, Australia. Sophomore Kelsey Freymiller, Viola, received $4,000 to study in Marburg, Germany. Junior Kathryn Jensen, Tomah, and sophomore Collin Weyers, Two Rivers, received scholarships to study at the University of Ghana at Accra, West Africa, through the International Student Exchange Program. Jensen was awarded $3,500, and Weyers was awarded $5,000.

The Gilman International Scholarship Program, established by the International Academic Opportunity Act of 2000, provides awards that allow American undergraduate students who receive federal Pell Grant funding at two- or four-year colleges or universities to participate in study abroad programs worldwide. The program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, and is administered by the Institute of International Education through its Southern Regional Center in Houston, Texas. Full story. back to top

Students study stream ecology in Argentina during immersion trip

Argentina group

Four UW-Eau Claire biology majors and a UW-Eau Claire biology faculty member spent three weeks in Argentina studying streams in the Andes Mountains. The research team included, back row from left, Zach Snobl, Chris Wojan, Dr. Todd Wellnitz and Kim Wellnitz; and front row from left, Ong Xiong and John Schoen.

When four UW-Eau Claire biology majors returned to campus last month to start spring classes, they brought with them a better understanding of the world's ecosystems, a new appreciation for cultural differences, connections to South American scientists and a desire to share their research with an international audience.

The seniors and a biology faculty member spent three weeks in January in Argentina, where they worked with Argentine scientists and students to study Andean mountain streams.

"It showed me a whole different culture that I probably never would have had a chance to see without this trip," Zach Snobl, Eau Claire, said of the international Winterim immersion experience. "It also helped me build connections with ecologists from different parts of the world. I think that is a really unique undergraduate experience."

Dr. Todd Wellnitz, associate professor of biology, led the research team, which included biology majors Snobl; John Schoen, Eau Claire; Chris Wojan, Wausau; and Ong Xiong, Eau Claire. The researchers spent nearly a month in the Argentina Andes and the nearby city of Mendoza, where they collaborated with Argentine scientists and undergraduate science students to study stream and riparian communities in the Andes Mountains. Full story. back to top

Social work majors thrive during internships in South Africa

Social work internship

Social work majors Kyrie Smith, left, and Brianna Niemi spent the fall 2011 semester working as interns in child care agencies in South Africa that serve children with a variety of needs.

Four social work majors from UW-Eau Claire completed their final semester of studies by completing an internship program in South Africa.

"Social workers need to have specific knowledge about how to work with diverse cultures, and this experience will enhance the students' future practice," clinical instructor Jeffrey Wright, who oversees the university's 10-year-old South Africa internship program, said of the international social work program.

Read about other social work majors participating in an immersion experience in Guatemala.

The internship program — first developed by Dr. Nicholas Smiar, professor emeritus of social work and adjunct lecturer of social work — currently has social work internship sites in Durban, King William's Town and Cape Town.

During their semester-long internships, UW-Eau Claire students work in child care agencies in South Africa that serve children who are placed with the agencies due to abuse, neglect or abandonment. Full story. back to top

Political science major to serve as student lobbyist in D.C.

Katy Faust
Katy Faust

A junior political science major at UW-Eau Claire will get some real-life experience this spring lobbying members of the U.S. Congress.

Katy Faust, a member of the UW-Eau Claire sorority Sigma Sigma Sigma-Gamma Lambda, was selected as a congressional representative by Tri Sigma and the National Panhellenic Council.

Faust will travel to Washington, D.C., April 21-25 to serve as a student lobbyist. The Neenah native will spend several days lobbying congress about the Collegiate Housing and Infrastructure Act, which would allow donations to Greek houses to be tax-deductible, safer and more affordable for members of fraternities and sororities. Full story. back to top

Forensics team wins 20th consecutive state championship

Holly Albers
Holly Albers

For the 20th year in a row, the UW-Eau Claire forensics team earned the championship trophy at the Wisconsin State Forensics Tournament.

Senior Holly Albers, Mazeppa, Minn., won the oratory competition at the Feb. 17-18 tournament at UW-Whitewater. Albers will represent UW-Eau Claire and the state of Wisconsin at the Interstate Oratory Contest in April in Boston. The Interstate Oratory Contest is the nation's oldest forensics competition.

In addition, UW-Eau Claire's forensics team won 10 of the 11 events offered at the 2012 Wisconsin State Forensics Tournament. Full story. back to top

The Forum to present renowned brain researcher
V.S. Ramachandran Feb. 29

V.S. Ramachandran
Dr. V.S. Ramachandran

The Forum will present celebrated brain researcher Dr. V.S. Ramachandran Wednesday, Feb. 29, at UW-Eau Claire. His lecture, titled "The Tell-Tale Brain: A Neuroscientist's Quest for What Makes Us Human," will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Schofield Auditorium.

An adjunct professor of biology at the Salk Institute, Vilayanur S. Ramachandran directs the Center for Brain and Cognition at the University of California, San Diego, where he is a distinguished professor in the psychology department and neurosciences program. Time magazine named him one of 2011's "100 Most Influential People in the World."

Ramachandran is known as a storyteller who is able to concretely and simply describe the most complicated inner workings of the brain. He is fascinated by patients who have unusual abilities or defects in the way they perceive the world. These include such puzzling phenomena as the phantom pain experienced in a missing limb, the inability to recognize a familiar face following a stroke, and the belief that one is actually dead. Ramachandran investigated many of these strange cases in his acclaimed book, "Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind" (1998), which was translated into nine languages. In 2001, Ramachandran was the subject of a one-hour episode of PBS's "Nova," titled "Secrets of the Mind." Full story. back to top

'Let's Do Lunch!' speaker to offer tax information

"Let's Do Lunch!" logoJoin the UW-Eau Claire Alumni Association for this month's "Let's Do Lunch!" noon-hour speaker series Wednesday, Feb. 29, at Fanny Hill Restaurant in Eau Claire. Enjoy a luncheon buffet, informative presentation and engaging discussion with a UW-Eau Claire expert.

Ray Hughes, director of the entrepreneur program in the UW-Eau Claire College of Business, will provide an update on a few pertinent IRS changes for 2012 and helpful information just in time for tax filing. More information. back to top

Viennese Ball tickets are now available

Viennese BallTickets for the 38th Annual Viennese Ball at UW-Eau Claire are now available at the Service Center counter in the east lobby of Davies Center. Walk-up and telephone sales have already begun, not on March 5 as previously announced.

The largest social event hosted annually by the university, the Viennese Ball will be presented April 13 and 14 from 6:30 p.m.-1 a.m. in Davies Center. Tickets are $40 for the public or $27.50 for UW System, Chippewa Valley Technical College and high school students.

The Service Center is open from 7 a.m.-9 p.m. weekdays and from 10 a.m.-9 p.m. weekends. Patrons also may charge their tickets to Discover, MasterCard or Visa when they order by phone. Call 715-836-3727 — or, outside the immediate Eau Claire area, call toll-free 800-949-UWEC. A $3 handling fee will be added to all telephone charge orders. There will be no online sales for this event. Full story. back to top

Aldo Leopold Banquet attendees invited to hike to event

Aldo LeopoldPeople attending the seventh annual Aldo Leopold Banquet and silent auction March 2 are invited to hike to the event as a way to celebrate the conservation legacy of Aldo Leopold.

People who want to make the seven-mile trek from the UW-Eau Claire campus to the Eau Claire Rod and Gun Club should meet on the Central Campus Mall at 2:30 p.m. March 2.

The event — which will introduce students and community members to the Aldo Leopold land ethic and pass the conservation torch to the next generation — will run from 5-10 p.m. at the Eau Claire Rod and Gun Club.

Those who walk from campus to the Eau Claire Rod and Gun Club will be recognized during the banquet. Event organizers will help find the walkers a ride back to Eau Claire when the event ends.

Tickets are still available for the banquet, collaboratively hosted by UW-Eau Claire's Environmental Adventure Center. All banquet attendees, including those hiking to the event, must purchase a ticket in advance. Full story. back to top

Open house scheduled for new online degree program

Designed for busy adults, UW-Eau Claire's fully online Bachelor of Professional Studies (BPS) in organizational leadership and communication degree completion program provides the practical knowledge and professional skills necessary for success and advancement in many careers.

Additional information will be provided at an open house scheduled for Wednesday, April 4, from 6-8 p.m. in the Presidents Room of Davies Center. Complete open house details can be found online.

If possible, RSVP Phil Huelsbeck at ce@uwec.edu or toll free 1-866-893-2423. Can't attend the open house but want to learn more? Email professionalstudies@uwex.edu or call toll free 1-877-895-3276. back to top

Host friends sought for international students

Host Friend ProgramThe Center for International Education at UW-Eau Claire invites Chippewa Valley community members to become hosts for international students arriving for the fall 2012 semester.

Host families/friends provide a weekend home stay before the students move into their residence halls. Hosts and their students stay in touch for activities and outings throughout the students' time at UW-Eau Claire. The Center for International Education's Host Friend Program encourages intercultural sharing and understanding.

For more information, contact community outreach coordinator Lucy deMalignon at 715-836-4411 or email hostfriend@uwec.edu. Applications and additional program information are available online. back to top

Alumni success stories

In addition to the alumni below, you can read about the accomplishments of other UW-Eau Claire alumni on the Alumni Success Stories Web pages:

Daniel Horner

Daniel Horner '90, a UW-Eau Claire elementary education graduate, continues to live and teach in Miharu, Japan, despite the devastating earthquake that hit the area last year. Full story.

Stacey Boehm

Stacey Boehm '05, a UW-Eau Claire elementary education graduate who also received a master of science in teaching degree in 2010, is a literacy coach at Locust Lane Elementary School in Eau Claire. (Photo by Steve Kinderman of the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram) Full story.

Sarah Rasmussen

Sarah Rasmussen '07, a UW-Eau Claire journalism graduate, has joined Morgan&Myers in Waukesha as an associate providing public relations and consumer media support for the firm's agricultural and consumer trust accounts. Full story.

UW-Eau Claire excellence seal Nate Jahn '07, a UW-Eau Claire kinesiology graduate who also received a master of education-professional development in science in 2009, is health and wellness director at the Eau Claire YMCA. Full story.
Sue Haigh Sue Haigh '84, a UW-Eau Claire nursing graduate, has received a Jefferson Award for community and public service. Full story.
John Sackett

John Sackett '76, a UW-Eau Claire accounting graduate, has been appointed to serve a one-year term as chairman of the CUNA Volunteer Leadership Committee. Full story.

UW-Eau Claire excellence seal Vicki Hoehn '80, a UW-Eau Claire management graduate, and Mary Rose Willi '90, a UW-Eau Claire accounting graduate, have each been selected to receive a 2012 Women of Courage, Confidence and Character award from the Girl Scouts of the Northwestern Great Lakes. Full story.
Ruth Gullerud Ruth Gullerud '71, a UW-Eau Claire English graduate, plans to retire from her position as executive director of United Cerebral Palsy of West Central Wisconsin in May. (Photo by Dan Reiland of the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram) Full story.
Ginny Ormsby Ginny Ormsby '74, a UW-Eau Claire music graduate, is executive director of the Northwoods Homeless Shelter in Amery. Full story.
Dan Platta Dan Platta '08, a UW-Eau Claire business finance, accounting and economics (business) graduate, is a Cargill kitchen solutions risk manager and is featured on the Cargill website as a model of how to be successful in business. Full story.
Alison Deininger Alison Deininger '08, a UW-Eau Claire mass communication graduate, has joined Starion Financial as a mortgage banker at its Greenway Station location in Middleton. Full story. back to top

Blugold Trivia headline
Show how much you know about UW-Eau Claire — AND win great Blugold prizes! Email your answer to this month's question to the Blugold Trivia mailbox (trivia@uwec.edu). Those sending correct responses to this month's question will be entered in a drawing for a Blugold beanie and scarf. The name of this month's Blugold Trivia winner will be published in the March 2012 issue of e-View.

February Blugold Trivia question:

UW-Eau Claire's Schofield Auditorium recently underwent a major renovation. On average, how many student-sponsored events are held in the auditorium each year?

Know the answer? Email it, along with your name and class year, to trivia@uwec.edu. You'll be notified by email if you are this month's winner!

January's winner:
Congratulations to Tonya Miller, a 1998 UW-Eau Claire elementary/middle education graduate (MST '08) and winner of the January Blugold Trivia prize! Tonya's name was drawn from among those who correctly answered that Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine evaluated more than 500 colleges and universities to create its list of the nation's 100 best values among public colleges (on which UW-Eau Claire was included). back to top

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Last Updated: March 2, 2012 Questions/Comments: alumni@uwec.edu