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Who's Who?
Assistant Director for Advising and Student Programs

Faculty Fellow
Program Associate
Honors Student Staff & Advisors

University Honors Director:

jeff vahlbuschJefford Vahlbusch ( became director of the University Honors Program in July 2009. He is also an associate professor of German in the Department of Foreign Languages. His areas of scholarly and teaching interest include 19th and 20th century literature and philosophy,literary reception, classical literature, and the history of Marxism. He is currently working on a book-length study of Hermann Hesse's reception in the USA, especially in the counterculture, anti-war, and student movements during the 1960s and 1970s.

Assistant Director for Advising & Student Programs:Ivy Bohnlein

Ivy Bohnlein ( joined the University Honors Program in September 2011, an appointment made possible by the Blugold Commitment program. Dr. Ivy holds a BA and MA in Anthropology from Arizona State University and the University of Arizona, and earned her Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from ASU while employed there full-time. She has over 12 years of experience in advising and student affairs, and her doctoral research focused on the effects of university-level Honors programs on student development. In addition to helping students discover their passions and achieve their goals, she enjoys cooking, sculpting, and taiko drumming..

Honors Program Faculty Fellow:

David M. Jones ( is an Associate Professor of david jonesEnglish and Women’s Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire.  His writing examines a wide range of topics in literature, social movements, and popular culture using interdisciplinary methods.  His essay on Lorraine Hansberry and sexuality in the civil rights movement is collected in Growing Up Postmodern (2002), and he has recently published essays on Booker T. Washington, William Jennings Bryan, and Clarence Major.  Current writing projects include a full-length manuscript on the Black Arts Movement and a biographical essay on the blues and soul musician Etta James.  David is also the executive producer of a program series on the history of jazz, blues, soul, and reggae music, Jazz, Blues, and Beyond.  The program will be broadcast during Fall 2006  on 89.7 FM WUEC in Eau Claire. David is also a professional musician.  His site,, provides information about his live performances and sound recordings.

Program Associate:

pam goldenPam Golden ( is the program associate for the University Honors Program. Prior to joining the Program January 1, 2010, she worked nearly six years with the Ronald E. McNair Postbaccalaureate Achievement Program on campus. Before coming to UWEC, Pam worked as a Marketing Manger and, for nearly 12 years, as a Girl Scout Executive staff member - an organization with which she retains a lifetime membership. Pam earned her B.A. in Political Science with a minor in Business Administration from Wright State University in Dayton, OH and her M.A. in Public Affairs from the University of Iowa in 1989. To complete the Master's degree, Pam wrote her thesis on Affirmative Action in city government researching 14 cities in eastern Iowa. When not enjoying time with her teenage children, Pam is likely to be found reading a British mystery novel, listening to great Blues music while sipping herbal tea - or Diet Mountain Dew.

Honors Student Staff, Advisors, and Ambassadors:

Our Student Ambassadors are available for new and current University Honors Students to:Anja and Emily

  • connect with the Program;
  • assist with scheduling honors and other courses;
  • discuss ideas for innovation and retention in University Honors;
  • assisting in any way to provide Honors students with a meaningful experience in University Honors and at UWEC.

emilyHometown: Green Bay, Wi
Major: Biochemistry/Molecular Biology, pre-med
                I am a sophomore here at UWEC, with a strong interest in science and medicine. My goal is to go to medical school on the east coast and specialize in neurology. I have been dancing since I was 3, and spend most of my free time dancing and working as an assistant coach for an area high school dance team. I also started doing research in the Materials Science program last winter, which is something that I’m really excited and passionate about.

Being a part of the University Honors program has enabled me to work towards my own individualized education at UWEC, and really get the most out of my time here. The classes I am most excited for each semester have been my Honors classes because of the unique approach they provide to learning and education. The content is fresh and exciting, and it is great to feel a sense of individuality in class and to be able to actually discuss with the other students and the professor--something you don’t get in a huge lecture hall.

anjaHometown: Edina, MN
Major: Nursing
I am a sophomore here at UWEC however I’m two years older than most sophomores. I took two years off after high school to live and work abroad in Denmark and England, each for a year. I really like it here in Eau Claire and have tried to get involved on campus. Currently I am the Co-chair of the Festivals Committee, a branch of the UAC, Secretary of the College Democrats, in the social sorority Alpha Xi Delta and a member of Advocates 4 Choice.

The Honors Program is something I was unsure of when I enrolled my freshman year. As a nursing major I figured it wouldn’t really help me or that I would be able to graduate with honors. I am glad to say I was completely wrong on both counts. The new Honors Program is fantastic and something I am very passionate about. Their flexibility and individual approach is something new and is a way that more students in honors will be able to graduate with honors and achieve more unique experiences through the program.