Page 1

Spring 2011

From the Director Hello Region 8! We’ve made it through another great school year! (Or at least, you’re really close.) Despite being pulled in so many directions this time of year, I hope you take the time to read this edition of The Communique. It’s been a while since the last Region 8 newsletter was distributed and we have many important updates, events, and stories to share with you.

So what has Region 8 been up to these past few months? I was so pleased by the turnout from Region 8 last fall at the Regions 8 & 9 Conference at Valparaiso University. Ninety-nine members were in attendance representing eighteen schools. With all the concern over travel restrictions and tightening budgets, it was wonderful to see how many students and staff were in attendance last November. Region 8 recognized the situation and rewarded eleven scholarships to help make this conference a reality for additional students and staff members from 5 different schools. Please take the time to read the recipients’ conference write-ups which appear later in this newsletter. The Recreation and Academic Challenge Tournaments took place on February 5th at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. Although we would have hoped for more participants, all of the volunteers at UW-Green Bay put on a great event.

The participants seemed to be happy with the event and we are now better prepared for the 2012 tournaments. Many thanks to our Recreation Coordinator, Ruby Vega, and Academic Challenge Coordinator, Dan Abler, and the UW-Green Bay Union staff for coordinating these tournaments. The Region 8 Poetry Slam returned! Thanks to the efforts of our Poetry Slam Coordinator, Liz “Jr.” Rickaby, and UWMilwaukee for stepping up to host this year’s Slam on March 4th. Momentum has been created and we are already planning to make a better effort to promote next year’s Region 8 Poetry Slam to ensure this event continues to grow. As you know, this year’s Annual ACUI Conference was right in Region 8’s backyard - downtown Chicago. Region 8’s representation was strong: Eightyone members from twenty-one schools were in attendance. It was wonderful to see so many Region 8 folks involved in so many different ways at this year’s conference.

So, what’s next? Not only did UW-Green Bay host the Recreation and Academic Challenge Tournaments, but they are preparing to host us all this fall at the Region 8 Conference. I encourage all of you to challenge yourselves and be an active participant this fall. Submit an Education Session proposal. Volunteer during the conference. In addition to the seasoned veterans of ACUI, I

hope we can bring a large contingent of students and staff who have not yet experienced an ACUI Regional Conference. Certainly, we’ll have a number of updates to share with you throughout the summer and fall. The very best way to receive these updates is to follow Region 8: Twitter: @acui8 Facebook: Finally, I wanted to congratulate Andy Williams from UW-Stevens on being elected our next Region 8 Director. Andy has volunteered for ACUI as an undergrad, graduate student, and fulltime staff member. For the past two years, Andy has served as the Region 8 Recognition Coordinator. Andy is going to bring a wealth of knowledge, experience, and leadership to this position. Please join me in congratulating Andy if you haven’t already. I look forward to seeing all the great initiatives Andy implements during his time as our Regional Director. Good luck to all of you as you transition from school year to summer.

James McHaley Region 8 Director Keep an eye out for the next issue of The Communiqué this fall. In the meantime, be sure to check the Region 8 website, Facebook, or Twitter for updates!

Regions 8 & 9 Conference Valparaiso University November 5-6, 2010 Reflections from Scholarship Recipients Steve Zywicki UW-Green Bay Thank you Region 8 for providing me a scholarship to attend the joint regional conference at Valparaiso University. In these times of budget cuts and travel restrictions, the scholarship allowed our campus to take additional students out of state to attend the conference. I’ve been fortunate over the past few years in that I’ve had the privilege of attending the last four regional conferences. Let me say Valparaiso University and the fine folks at the Harre Union put on one heck of a conference. They have set the bar high for us when UW-Green Bay hosts the Region 8 Conference in 2011. After checking in, our merry band of travelers jumped on an opportunity to take a tour of campus and the Harre Union. From there we hit the conference running. We barely got back in time from our tour to get to the Keynote Speaker (we asked our patient tour guide A LOT of questions). After the Keynote Address and dinner it was time to get to our first educational session. I don’t know about you, but I always have a difficult time deciding which sessions to attend as several usually look like they would be benificial (I had this problem the whole weekend). We stayed to attend the Valpo After Dark and I do believe that UW-Green Bay will now be buying some SpinArt machines. Saturday was no disappointment ei-

ther. After some high stakes bidding at the silent auction I came away with a nice portfolio and mugs. I couldn’t have asked for a better conference experience. My favorite part of attending any conference though has always been the timewe get to spend with our coworkers and student employees outside of the office. We don’t often get chances to be together and not be in “work mode” so I always cherish these opportunities to get to know each other in a different light. Once again, thank you Region 8 for giving me the opportunity to attend the 2010 conference. See you next year at UW-Green Bay!

Jessica Cwik Marquette University ACUI is always an interesting experience for me, especially when you are with Dan Abler. I was able to attend the Regional Conference last year in Whitewater so this year’s Regional Conference in Valparaiso was not my first. One of the things that I liked a lot about this year’s conference was that there were more schools, obviously because we were combined with region 9, but I feel that I was able to learn a lot more because of the diversity of schools present at the conference. I found that I was able to relate my experiences at my union to a lot of the educational sessions that were available this year. It was nice to collaborate with other schools that weren’t necessarily familiar with our union pro-


grams. After this year’s conference I found myself being able to have some more ideas to take back to my specific department within our union, that hopefully we are going to start implementing soon. I think that the ACUI conferences are a great way to learn about other college unions. You can really learn to appreciate your college union by comparing it to other unions. I also think that a great benefit from going to the conferences is also just the fact that you get to meet a bunch of new people. Without going to the conference I wouldn’t have had the opportunity to meet other students who share a passion for their union. When you are simply an employee for a college union you don’t realize what the administration of the union actually does. There is a lot of hard work that directors of unions put in and by attending ACUI I have been able to better understand how the directors of our unions are truly creating the great places that we work in. This year’s ACUI conference in Valparaiso was a great experience. I learned a lot and who doesn’t love an 80’s throwback night or just meeting some great people.

Jon Eckleberg - UW-Green Bay I enjoyed my time very much at this year’s joint Region 8 and 9 ACUI conference. I liked the idea of doing the joint conference because it gave even more networking opportunities. I met so many great people and made some great connections with students who are in the same position as I am in their Union. I loved speaking with other students about their role and responsibilities in their position. It was neat comparing what I do as a student manager to what they do and then finding the pros and cons of each. I exchanged e-mails with a few students from other schools and we talked about how we can keep the lines of communication open and contact each other if we have questions about how other Unions go about things. I also had the opportunity to present a program, True Colors, at this year’s conference. I enjoyed that experience very much. My program was well perceived by most in attendance, and I had a lot of fun with it. The room was jam-packed which made me feel great! This was my second year attending the ACUI conference, and cannot wait for the next. The 2011 conference will be especially exciting for me personally because my school, UW-Green Bay is hosting and I am a student chair.

Kaitlyn Hoch - UW-Oshkosh This was my second time attending an ACUI conference, and I am once again really glad that I attended! I always enjoy exploring another university’s union and leaning about unique things people are doing on their campus to serve their students better. Attending this conference was especially important to me this year, because at the conference I co-presented my very first educational session. It was a really awesome experience for me to share what I do on my campus with others, and after presenting once, I am eager to do it again in the future! Words cannot express my great experience attending the ACUI Regions 8 and 9 conference. I learned a lot about issues affecting a university union everything from community outreach to how to be a more effective leader, ate great food (especially fudge puppies), got to meet new people in the field, and just had fun! Special thanks to Region 8 for giving me a scholarship to attend the conference and to Valparaiso University for doing such a wonderful job hosting this year’s conference!

More photos (and a video about Harre Union) on the Region 8 Conference Web Page

Lisa Goetsch - UW-Oshkosh Once again, I thoroughly enjoyed my time spent at a Region 8 conference. I have been to a joint conference before and I’m glad I was able to attend another one. The energy that you feel is something special. The conference always motivates and energizes me to take my job to the next level when I get back to my campus. This was my first opportunity to present at an ACUI conference and I hope I get the chance again. It was exciting to share our knowledge with others and to be able to gather new ideas that we could bring back home. I hope those that attended our session were as pleased with it as we were. Now that I’ve attended four regional conferences, I’m starting to feel at home with everyone. Seeing all the familiar faces is such a comforting feeling. I’m really enjoying the friendships that I’ve been building upon. Had I not been awarded this scholarship, I would not have been able to attend the conference. I am very appreciative of Region 8 for being so generous this year.

Megan McGivern - UW-River Falls As a Building Manager of the University Center at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls I was thrilled to drive eight hours to attend the ACUI conference at Valparaiso University. Most people ask me, “What do you actually do for your job?” It was a change of pace to be in a room full of people that understand completely. Since the ACUI Region 8 & 9 conferences could be combined this year, I was able to meet professionals from schools that seem so distant from River Falls, WI. ACUI brings students and professionals together that understand the importance of student unions at universities. I am a Marketing Communications Senior at UWRF so obviously I was ecstatic to hear that there were sessions available about marketing student unions. I enjoyed the silent auction because I was able to take home a brand new Marquette shirt. My number one favorite session was the Building Manager Round Table. We discussed operations throughout different universities. The job description of a Building Manager can mean a lot of different things to different student unions. Some managers are involved in event planning, building security, or facilities management. No two student unions run the same way but we all contribute to the same cause, building a home away from home for students. Next year, unfortunately, I will not be able to attend the ACUI Region 8 Conference at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay because I will have graduated. I will take my experiences from ACUI on to my future career, whatever that may be. I would like to thank Valparaiso University for hosting a highly successful ACUI Region 8 & 9 conference.

2011 Annual Conference, Chicago

Region 8 at Regional Dinner (Zocalo)

Congratulations to Rob Rouzer (UIC), recipient of the 2011 Butts Whiting Award!

Interactive Step Performance with UW-W Greek Students Region 8: 1st Place in Lego Wars and Men’s FUNd Run!

Academic Challenge and Recreation Tournaments UW-Green Bay - University Union & Kress Events Center February 5, 2011 2011 Academic Challenge (NAQT) Tournament Standings Division I: Lawrence University “A” Team Greg Peterson, Emily Koenig, Meghan Hickey

Division II: Northwestern University “B” Team Daniel Donohue .

Overall Top Scorer: Greg Peterson (Lawrence University) 9 Ball Tournament Winners Men’s 9-Ball: Jonathan Strzewski (Wilbur Wright College) Women’s 9-Ball: Samantha GIbson (UW-Green Bay)

Table Tennis Winners Men’s Singles Table Tennis: Nathaniel Curran (UW-Madison) Women’s Singles Table Tennis: Gina Lin (UW-Madison) Table Tennis Doubles: Zhuojie Li and Nathaniel Curran (UW-Madison)

Poetry Slam UW-Milwaukee March 4, 2011 Winners

• Elijah Furquan (UW-Milwaukee) • Jonathan Williams (UW-Milwaukee) • Marley Flueger (UW-Milwaukee) • Anthony Miller (UW-Oshkosh)


I’m just saying... Hello fellow colleagues! The end of the school year is here and it is time to say goodbye to our graduates and hello to vacations. However, it is also time to reflect on this past school year’s highs and lows and time to re-strategize for next year. Although most of us have not really felt the lovely Spring weather we have been hoping for as of late, Spring Cleaning should be well underway! Out with what didn’t work, goodbye to projects that didn’t make the cut, and whatever else seems to hold us back from the success we desire! I, unfortunately had to “clean house” as well. Here at the University of Illinois at Chicago, Campus Recreation instituted the Student Staff Experience Program with our student employees. It begins with a formal hiring process, an in depth training session on the tools needed to successfully complete the job description duties, a mandatory workshop (ie. Customer service, sexual harassment at the workplace, CPR/AED training, personal safety, etc.), a written test (must pass with 85% or higher), and an end of the year evaluation. The idea here is not only to build a strong relationship between the student employees and the full time staff, but also to make sure that our student employees get more out of the work experience than just a paycheck. In turn, we expect the student employee to feel ownership of their job and provide excellent customer service. Everybody wins! Well, as much as we worked with the student employees, and gave them many opportunities to shine, some students had too much going on and could not handle the demands of the job, or just did not make the effort to succeed in the program. I had to do one of the toughest things that comes with my job as a manager… terminate the student employees that did not make the cut. It was 25%. Ouch! However, the program is measurable and expectations must be met. There was definitely a sense of shock throughout the staff that remained. They know we are serious. They know they have to continue to do well to succeed here. I can only hope that those students no longer working for us realize how important it is to manage your time and adhere to policies and procedures. So feel free to drop me a line on your “cleaning house” experiences for the year, Until next time, I leave you with this quote, because I’m just saying…sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. Housework is something you do that nobody notices until you don’t do it. ~Author Unknown

Ruby Vega

University of Illinois at Chicago Academic Challenge Program Team Leader Education Team Leader Education Council Chair

Join the Region 8 Leadership Team! The Regional Leadership Team (RLT) is excited to announce many openings on the RLT. This is a great way to network and develop relationships with colleagues in the region while also getting involved in ACUI. With the wide variety of positions available, there is truly something for everyone. Apply today, and help make your experience with Region 8 what you would like it to be! Applications now accepted for the following positions: Educational Coordinators Membership Coordinator Recognition Coordinator Recreation Coordinator Student Representatives Web Coordinator Applications will be due on Friday, July 29, 2011. If you have any questions, or if you would like to submit an application for an RLT position, please contact:

Andy Williams Region 8 Director-Elect University of Wisconsin Stevens Point 1015 Reserve St. Stevens Point, WI 54481 email: phone: 715-346-2486 fax: 715-346-2365

Submit an Ed Session Proposal for Boston 2012 The 2012 Conference Planning Team would like to invite you to submit an education session proposal for Boston 2012. The theme is “Our Revolution: Relate, Reflect, React.” It is the hope of the Conference Program Team that education sessions will provide opportunities for members of the association to come together and get to know one another, reflect on the profession’s past and future and to think critically about the challenges that the profession faces today, and to ignite action on our campuses and in our association as we adapt to the ever-changing context within which we work. One of the best resources we have in ACUI is each other, so we hope you will consider sharing your student union knowledge with the rest of us! Submissions are due June 12 and can be completed online at If you have questions or need more information please contact Barry Bram at or Nancy Loosle at We hope you will consider submitting a proposal, and we look forward to seeing you in Boston!

Thank you to Ajacks Photography for many of the photos from Valparaiso

Communique | ACUI Region 8 Spring 2011  

Communique | ACUI Region 8 Spring 2011