UW-Milwaukee Premiering At
WURHA UW-La Crosse 2014
YEAR February 21-23, 2014
Table of Contents Letter from the Bid Team-1 | Campus-2 | Institution-3 | Residence Life-4 | Residence Halls-5 Residence Life Staff-6 | Residence Life Committees-7 | SHAC-8 | Community Councils-9 NRHH-10 | RAs & Student Staff-11 | Residence Hall Events-12 | Campus Events-13 Conferences-14 | Inclusive Programming-15 | Service-16 | Policy & Legislative Changes-17 Sustainability-18 | Financial Information-19 Obstacles-20 | Letters of Recomendation-21, 22, 23, & 24
Dear WURHA Directorship and Wisconsin Communications Coordinators, It is with great delight that we present the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee as a candidate for School of the Year for WURHA 2014. We have seen our organizations, residence halls, and campus grow and shine over the past year, and we would like to share our pride with all of you. Our Student Housing Administrative Council (SHAC) has overcome the challenges of disastrous governing documents, a student court case, and a dramatic restructuring of councils to become a stronger and healthier governing organization that has a strong presence within the residence halls. Within all of residence life we have the first inclusive housing option in the UW System, dozens of living and learning communities, an online retention tool which allows for tailored support of students in the halls, and a plethora of sustainability initiatives aimed at educating students on respecting the world around them. The campus as a whole has a strong reputation as a leading research institute, takes pride in the immense diversity on campus, and is seeing a growth in facilities and opportunities designed to better serve the student body. We believe it will become clear to you why UW-Milwaukee is a strong candidate for WURHA 2014â€™s School of the Year and weâ€™d like to thank you in advance for your consideration. The UW-Milwaukee Bid Team
Heather Salvo 2013-2014 SHAC Vice President
Alyssa Zasada 2012-2013 NCC
Chris Laabs 2013-2014 NRHH President
The STudio UW-Milwaukee is located on a 104 acre campus in the Downer Woods neighborhood on the Upper East Side of Milwaukee. The campus is a mix of mid-century, modern, and historic buildings that are split into two locations, North Campus and South Campus. UW-Milwaukee retains its intimate nature by remaining compact and having a shuttle which runs back and forth between campuses. While the larger North Campus of UWM is in a residential neighborhood, it is less than a ten minute drive to downtown and all students are provided with a bus pass which allows them free travel on Milwaukee County Transit System buses which provide safe and efficient travel. North Campus contains the majority of academic buildings, Sandburg Residence Hall, Purin Hall, the student union, the Klotche Sports and Recreation Center, and Norris Health Center. North campus is compact and the average student can walk from one side to the other in less than ten minutes. Currently, a major feature of the campus is a large crane constructing the Kenwood Interdiciplinary Research Complex, a stateof-the-art lab and scientific research building. South Campus is the newer of the two campuses. Located off of trendy North Avenue, it features Kenilworth Square Apartments, a residence hall for upperclassmen, and Kenilworth Square East, a collection of art galleries, studios, and classrooms. It also includes the newly constructed Cambridge and RiverView residence halls. UW-Milwaukee was founded in 1956, but its history goes back to 1885 as the Milwaukee State Normal School, a teachers college. It has existed in its current location since 1961 when it bought the former Downer Seminary buildings, which are still a feature of the college of Letters & Science. In its long history, UWM has seen many famous alumni including two heads of state; most famously Israeli Prime Minister, Golda Meir. More recently US Ambassador to Iceland, Luis Artega, received his Bachelors, Masters, and Doctorate at UWM. In February 2014, UW-Milwaukee alum Satya Nadella was named the CEO of Microsoft. While UW-Milwaukee is the second largest university in Wisconsin, it contains the largest number of Wisconsin state residents as students. UW-Milwaukee proudly sets itself apart from other universities through its large course offerings. It features the only architecture and public health programs in the state, and the only freshwater science school in the nation. It also contains the only dedicated art school in the UW System. Additionally, UWM is one of two research institutions in the state and boasts its undergraduate research programs which allow students to work alongside professors on groundbreaking programs. It is also one of two doctoral granting institutions in the UW-System with 32 doctoral programs available. 2
The Production Company The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is a one-of-a-kind school that provides a top-notch education while being accessible to students from all walks of life. The Honors college offers students the chance to earn an Honors degree with seminar-style classes focused on reading and writing, the Student Success Center provides multiples support tools to students including free tutoring sessions, and the student body is the most diverse in the entire UW System.
Our Chancellor- Michael Lovell Chancellor Lovell is always striving to best serve UW-Milwaukee students. Whether he’s giving a welcome speech to the incoming freshman class, working out alongside students in the Klotche Center, or challenging students to a pedal kart race, you’re sure to see our chancellor active and visible on campus. His initiatives for UW-Milwaukee include investing in and expanding research, promoting student success and retention, creating an open and inviting work environment, and becoming a leader in in energy and power technologies. He is extremely accessible to the entire student body, which can be seen by his willingness to visit the residence halls for question-and-answer forums on hot campus topics and to visit inquiring communities, such as the Honors LLC who hosted a casual meet-and-greet with him over tea.
Guiding Values • Innovation, leadership, and collaboration that fosters learning through education, scholarship and research, and public service. • Opportunities for open inquiry to support the positive transformation of individuals (students, faculty, and staff), institutions, and communities. • A caring, compassionate, and collegial community characterized by mutual respect and safety. • Diversity in all of its definitions, including who we are, how we think, and what we do. • Ethical behavior, based on integrity, accountability, and responsibility • Transparent and inclusive decision making. • Stewardship of resources that promote sustainability, prosperity, and equity for all in the local and global communities. • Pride in our institution, our unique qualities, and our vital role.
Fast Facts • • • • • • •
29,000 students from all 50 states More than 1,000 international students from over 80 foreign countries 1:20 faculty-student ratio 140,000 alumni More than 1,000 campus events, games, and performances every year. Over $60 million in research grants annually 34,000 applications recieved in 2011-2012
The SET “UWM University Housing is committed to enhancing community members’ cultural understanding, leadership skills, academic success, social connections, and social responsibility by creating safe, comfortable, and well-maintained living learning environments that inspire growth and development.” -University Housing Mission Statement Living Learning Communities (LLCs) LLCs offer students the chance to connect to others with similar interests by living in the same community and taking a class together in the residence hall in which they live. There are 20 different community choices offered ranging from specific majors to general interests, including: •
• • •
The American Sign Language LCC where students who know or are learning ASL have the opportunity to learn more about deaf culture and history. The Panther Military, Veterans, and ROTC LCC where active military members, veterans, and ROTC cadets are able to build a community together with support services designed specifically for their needs. The Social Justice, Diversity and Pride LLC where students learn about inclusion, activism, and the complexities of identity. The Transfer Community where incoming transfer students are placed in a community with events and resources tailored to their needs. The Career Quest LLC where students explore their personal, school, and career related interests and formulate goals for their future.
Mapworks Imagine having a system that alerts staff members to the struggles and successes of students so that changes could be made to better support residents. UWM has this system, and it is called MAP-Works: Making Achievement Possible Works. This program sends out an online survey to students four times a year in order to gain information on their college experience, and the results serve as a tool for achieving student success and retention. The data collected allows staff to better support the students while at UWM, refer them to campus resources, and get the entire campus community to participate in a student’s college experience. A direct result of MAP-Works information has been the creation of programs and events designed to aid student success where it is most needed, such as tutoring sessions, the Panther Academic Reboot Program, and the 1G Collective, which is an initiative focused on first generation college students.
The Sound stages Restaurant Operations
There are three main cafeterias within the residence halls which provide residents with a plethora of options made by in-house dining services. Not only do many of the ingredients come from local Wisconsin farms, but some even come from the campus green roofs, gardens, and hoop house. When the cafeterias are closed you can head to Palm Gardens, a late-night eatery which provides made-to-order burgers and wraps, grab-and-go pizza, and other munchies for when students are up late... studying. When you need a pick-meup before class you can stop at The Grind, a campus coffee shop serving a variety of drinks and baked goods. For healthy options, the RESTORE convenience store provides minimally processed or nonprocessed foods and beverages.
Sandburg Residence Hall
Sandburg is a community within itself, offering a fitness center, dining hall, coffee shop, convenience store, late-night dining, movie theater, laundry room, and computer lab all under one roof. Just under 3,000 beds make up the four towers where residents live, learn, and play. Three of the towers are suite-style and house predominantly first year students, and the apartment-style fourth tower attracts many upperclassmen.
Cambridge Commons Residence Hall Built in 2010, this residence hall of 700 students is LEED Gold Certified and is seated on the shore of the Milwaukee River. Students enjoy kitchens on every floor, a contained green space for recreation, a workout facility, and a walking path down to the river. Common rooms are available for programming, council meetings, and even classes.
RiverView Residence Hall Located just across the river from Cambridge Commons, this residence hall offers spacious suites for around 475 students. Take a walk down the halls and you will find a collection of professional art pieces created by local residents and UWM graduates.
Kenilworth Square Apartments Located in what used to be a Model-T Ford factory, these modern living quarters are anything but old. The space was opened in 2006 and offers a unique living option for upperclassmen, graduate students, and older students by being run more like a traditional apartment building and less like a campus residence hall.
Purin Residence Hall Purin Hall is a quaint apartment-style building enjoyed by approximately 50 upperclass students. Originally an apartment builidng, it was purchased for students in the Peace Corp before becoming a residence hall. It offers a quiet and intimate hall for those who want to be close to campus yet away from the hustle and bustle of larger residence halls. 5
The Producers UW-Milwaukee’s extremely fortunate to have professonal staff members who truly care about residents, student leaders, and student staff members. Matt Crouse
Assistant Director of Residence Life
Assistant Director of Student Success
Supervises the entire Residence Life Unit Leads Assessment of Learning Outcomes Professional Staff Recruitment & Training
Supervises 3 Graduate Assistants Program Director, Learning Communities/LLCs Leads University’s MAP-Works Initiative Works on Special Retention Projects
• • •
Residence Life Coordinator
Residence Life Coordinator
Supervises South Tower RAs Residence Life Training Committee RA Recruitment & Selection Committee Co-Advisor, SHAC
Residence Life Coordinator • • •
Residence Life Coordinator
Supervises North Tower RAs Fall Welcome/Winter Welcome/ Family Weekend Planning Committees Co-Advisor, SHAC
Supervises East Tower RAs Advisor East/Purin Council
Duane “DJ” Johnson
Residence Life Coordinator • • •
Co-Supervises Cambridge RAs RA Recruitment & Selection Committee NRHH Advisor
Residence Life Coordinator • •
Supervises West Tower RAs Social Justice Committee Chair Advisor West Tower Council
Supervises RiverView RAs Advisor RiverView Council
Associate Residence Life Coordinators
Jesse Singleton- Cambridge Amy Westmoreland-North & West Tyler Stahl-South Tower LindyEvans-North Tower
The Table Read There are three residence life committees which address specific needs within the halls through education and programming. Each is chaired by a member of the professional staff and aims to give students resources and support on issues which are important to the college experience. Social Justice Committee This committee focuses on expanding students’ minds and promoting inclusive ways of thinking. A major pillar of this group is celebrating diversity of identity and learning about those who are different from you. They held a social justice week full of events, including Boxes and Walls. This program gives students an inside look at what discrimination, oppression, and social stigma looks and feels like. Different rooms were set up for students to walk through, each one with a different theme. On the walls in each room there were posters and clips taken from social media posts that showed real acts of discrimination that were taking place in our community. This event really made the acts of hate and and stigma a realistic concept for students. Some of the topics covered in each room included race, sexual orientation, gender/body image, and socioeconomic status. After the tour students went into a discussion where they were free to speak openly, yet respectfully, about what they had seen, felt, and learned during the experience. It was an eye-opener for students about the power of words and actions.
Sustainability Committee UW-Milwaukee strives to be environmentally friendly, and the root of that effort is education of the students. This committee focuses on getting students excited about and involved in sustainable efforts in the residence halls including recycling, composting, and energy reduction. A goal that is currently being worked on is coming up with a formal proposal on how the Residence Life department should move forward regarding recycling bins for students throughout University Housing. There are discussions going on about factors such as desired student behavior, cost of different recycling bin strategies, and many other logistics. Recycling bags were purchased for each suite for the 2013/14 school year as the beginning step, and the next step being worked on is educating the students. The Senior RA created half-sheet flyers for distribution by RAs that was designed to communicate the normal recycling process for University Housing (how to use their bags, where the contents goes, etc.). The on-duty RAs went from suite to suite to explain the process and hand out the flyers for the residents to keep. The Senior RA also created bulletin boards and posters designed to address the high levels of contamination in recycling we are currently experiencing throughout all of the residence halls. New “single-stream” posters were created for all public recycling bins to help educate residents on the new single-stream (aka “co-mingled”) system that UWM has recently implemented. To get students actively participating in conservation efforts, the committee held an energy competition among the six residence halls. Utilizing an online tracking system, students could see in real time how much water and energy was being used by each hall, so the one that conserved the most received a collective $500.
Alcohol and Other Drug Alternatives Committee (AODA)
Providing an alternative for students to stay in the halls instead of going out drinking is incredibly important, especially when the majority of students living in the residence halls are under 21. This committee puts on programs that offer students a safe, fun, and legal alternative for their Thursday and Friday nights. Panthers After Dark is an initiative started this school year to provide students events on Thursday nights, and all events start at 9:27pm. Why such an odd time? Because it gets people’s attention! When students attend three of these events they get a free t-shirt, which helps to get students to attend week after week. Events which have been held include a trivia night, dodgeball, Ok-sober-fest, a highlighter party, and Get Turnt Up, which was a guest speaker from Neon Entertainment who spoke on alcohol education and safety. 7
Starring The Student Housing Administrative Council (SHAC) is the official Residence Hall Association of UW-Milwaukee. Consisting of a five-member executive board, a general body, and six community councils, it represents residents in Cambridge, RiverView, Sandburg, and Purin Residence Halls. Executive Board
President- Kenlei Cowell
The president presides over executive board and general body meetings, provides leadership opportunities to all members, and is in charge of keeping the organization on track. It is this person’s responsibility to make sure goals are being achieved, voices are being heard, and the students are being represented. In a nutshell, the President is the face of the organization and acts as the main liaison between SHAC and all external entities.
Vice President- Heather Salvo
Serving as a liaison between SHAC and the Community Councils, it is the Vice President’s duty to make sure that councils are efficiently resourced in order to be successful and independent. This person focuses on recruitment, retention, recognition, and motivation of the General Body.
NACURH Communications Coordinator (NCC)- Emma Price
The NACURH Communications Coordinator holds the responsibility for all state, regional, and national residence hall conferences. The NCC is the official representative of UWM’s Residence Halls and is in charge of leading conference delegations, maintaining communication with conference officials, and assisting with the creation of bids and programs.
Events Coordinator- Jessica Jansen
Our Events Coordinator focuses on organizing programs and events for all residents of University Housing. It is the duty of this position to hold annual events that make up some of the traditions of SHAC, as well as implement new events in order to constantly bring fresh experiences to the residents. The Events Coordinator is also the acting chair of the Events Committee, a council of residents which helps to bring a variety of perspectives to SHAC programing.
Business Manager- April Sloan
The person in charge of minutes, records, and budget is our Business Manager. This person is the bookkeeper of the organization and is also in charge of care packages, managing everything from communication with OCM to getting the packages out to residents.
The General Body consists of two representatives from each of the six Community Councils, one representative from the RA staff, and one from the NRHH Panther Chapter. Lead by the President and the rest of the SHAC Executive Board, the General Body makes final decisions on large budget requests, represents the residents in campus and housing wide plans, and maintains communication between SHAC, the Community Councils, and the rest of the University Housing staff. The General Body meets every Tuesday at 7 p.m.
Committees In order to keep the General Body focused on tasks with tangible outcomes and to turn conversation into action, the General Body splits into three committees after every meeting. The Events Committee assists the Events Coordinator in planning and staffing events. The Facilities and Issues Committee recieves comments and suggestions from students and works with housing on solutions. The Public Relations Committee manages all outgoing contact of SHAC through traditional advertising, social media, and a newsletter.
Co-Starring SHAC contains six semi-independent Community Councils, one for each building and tower. Each have their own general body made up of representatives of each house, their executive board, and a staff advisor. Their primary purpose is to plan programs and represent the residents of their community. East Purin Involvement Council (EPIC)
The East Purin Involvement Council is the UWM Community Council serving East Tower and Purin Hall which are both majority upperclassmen. These students bring their experience and knowledge of the campus to create programing that is not the traditional type of event aimed at first year students. For example, EPIC hosted the 3rd Annual The Walk to Die For, a haunted walk through the Downer Woods. This not only served as a twist on the classic Halloween haunted house for students, but it also made them aware of the nine acre woods on our campus which has several walking paths and an atmosphere where students can escape from the city life.
Sandburg West Attack Team
The West Tower Community Council brings an unexpected edge of diversity to SHAC in the 2013-14 school year. Composed of mostly young men, the team brands itself as the wild-yet-responsible Community Council that is open to all individuals who want to build community through music, dancing, and a good time. The West Tower Community Council became the Sandburg West Attack Team, not because this group of student leaders is violent, but to attract students...which it did. They are known for the their socials, dances, and showcases that were open to anyone who wanted to attend, whether or not they lived in West Tower. SWAT transformed a common space called The Channel into Club Channel (pronounced like the fragrance Chanel) several Thursday nights into a place for socializing and community building.
North Tower Community Council
The North Tower Community Council came into the year as the council with the largest number of students to represent, and is determined to encourage its large population to connect and be tight-knit. With 26 floors and over 800 students living in the hall, it decided to reach its constituents directly by holding weekly events and meetings in their first floor lounge every Monday night--a night they dubbed â€œMonday Funday.â€? These events allowed the council representatives to ask residents their opinions on overall SHAC decisions while simultaneously giving them a place for fun and community building. It also hosted a tower wide decorating contest that encourage the various floors in North Tower to use their creativity and teamwork to build their smaller communities.
South Tower Assembly of Residents (STAR)
STAR started the year determined to utilize all resources available to them for Sandburg South Tower residents. They hosted regular meetings in the Meltwater House, a student built green facility situated right outside of South Tower, as well as having regular advertising in the cove under the main staircase. The STAR team was also the only Community Council to use all of its first semester budget. A large amount of the STAR funds were spent on a Winter Relaxation Day held on the last day of classes before exams. They brought in massage therapists, exfoliating hand wash stations, delicious food, and low key activities for all students in the residence halls to use and start their exam week with less tension.
As the newest residence hall in University Housing, the Cambridge Commons Community Council has a modern arena in which it has developed a modern council. It quickly took advantage of the technology minded millenials in Cambridge to host video game nights and meetings in the chic front lobby in order to be as visible as possible. In fact, Cambridge Commons Community Council President Abe Glasbrennar holds his weekly office hours in the front lobby so residents can come to him with any ideas and issues they faced in their particular community.
RiverView Community Council
Riverview Community Council came into the new school year as a council made up of previously underrepresented students from the far south end of campus. With the new split into hall councils, Riverview had its first chance at building a council that was geared specifically towards their unique location and building style. The students in Riverview Community Council took the Panther Pride from the north campus and spread it with enthusiasm to the sound campus. They did this by choosing engaged SHAC General Body members who arenâ€™t afraid to speak up for the south campus minority.
UW-Milwaukee is home to the Panther Chapter of the National Residence Hall Honorary (NRHH). Following in the four pillars of NRHH, it hosts volunteerism, leadership training, scholastic, and recognition events for its members and student leaders within the residence halls. Executive Board President- Chris Laabs The president presides over executive board and general body meetings, provides leadership opportunities to all members, and is in charge of keeping the organization on track. This year, the president was given the task of re-writing the constitution and reshaping the direction of the organization.
Vice President of Communication, Leadership, and Recognition- Haley Evanoff
The VP of Communication, Leadership, and Recogniton is in charge of keeping the organization in line with two NRHH pillars (Leadership and Recognition) by co-planning a leadership conference with SHAC and coordinating all recognition efforts. This exec board member also serves at the NRHH-CC.
Vice President of Schoolastics and Service- April Sloan
The VP of Schoolastics and Service plans one community service event per month as well as a service activity that takes place during a meeting. This year, since April is also on the SHAC executive board, she also relays what NRHHâ€™s sister organization is planning.
The secretary takes meeting minutes, reserves rooms for meetings, and assists the rest of the exec board with events and planning meetings.
Rebuilding In 2012, NRHH nearly ceased to exist when an executive board of five became an executive board of one within two days. While that final executive board member kept the organization running, it was not until the 2013-2014 year that the organization was able to re-build its membership and status on campus. The NRHH Panther Chapter was completely re-written to adjust the mission of the organization, makeup of the executive board, and how day-to-day operations were run. This has resulted in a membership gain of nearly 400% and a renewed focus of recognition, especially OTMs.
There are two main events which are fixtures of UWMâ€™s residence halls. NRHH sponosors a bi-yearly clean-up of Bradford Beach, a popular beach for students and Milwaukee residents alike. Each cleanup results in hundreds of pounds of garbage being removed from the beach. It also sponsors and runs the End of the Year Banquet, a recognition banquet held for all RAs, student staff, NRHH, SHAC, and Community Council leaders.
With The backbone of University Housing is the student staff that keep the buildings safe, clean, and an enjoyable environment for students to live and learn. Between RAs, Security, and Service Desk, there are many students who work in the five halls. Resident Assistants (RAs)
The RAs at UW-Milwaukee are student employees who have been selected and trained to assist and support approximately 72 residents each. They help build communities within our halls by organizing events, providing useful resources, and ensuring that all University Housing policies are followed. The RAs this year have worked and trained with SHAC. They listened to many presentations about our desires to collaborate and to bring our communities even closer. They also included our executive board in their trainings. The RAs this year volunteered to motivate the students to give back to the community in a very unique way. Each RA put a box for food donations outside their suite, and residents were to â€œvoteâ€? for specific RAs by placing items in the box of the RA of their choice. Whoever had the most goods at the end of the competition would receive a pie in the face! Residents put their name on the bottom of each item they contributed, so when it came to deciding who would throw the pies a name was randomly selected by pulling donated items out of the boxes. Lastly our RAs have always been ones to promote the on-goings of SHAC. They encourage their resident to be involved and to attend the many events we host, including those of the councils. They themselves also take the effort to participate in our events and be involved, as one RA serves as a liaison to the SHAC general body.
In order to enter any residence halls students must swipe their student ID. Only residents are allowed entrance, and any other person wishing to enter must register as a guest. Because of this, we have security on duty at all times to monitor the doors. Along with that, security staff regularly make rounds of the building to assure the maintenance of a safe and secure living environment for all students. The students who work security positions take on a large responsibility with their job duties, and have consistently stepped up to fulfill these responsibilities in a caring and professional manner.
If you need help with anything or everything, the student workers at the service desk can help you out. These students can answer almost any question you have, and when they donâ€™t know the answer to a question they can send you to the person that does. They are expected to handle a plethora of tasks including lending out cleaning and recreation equipment, managing lost and found items, replacing keys and providing key-ins to rooms, and selling cable and ethernet cords. The service desk is staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so you always have a helping hand when you need it.
Feature Films Within the Residence Halls, SHAC, Community Councils, NRHH, RAs, and Professional Staff all host programs for one specific community, one tower or building, or all of University Housing. While some are social, many incorporate educational or service aspects encourage University Housing residents to become upstanding community members. Blood Drives
With over 4000 arms to pull from, the Blood Center of Wisconsin relies on SHAC to help organize and sponsor nine blood drives throughout the academic year. The drives are spread equally throughout Sandburg, Riverview, and Cambridge so students can donate in their residence hall.
SHAC has been sponsoring Sex Week for the past four years, with each year getting exceedingly better. In one year, participation in the weeklong educational event grew from 650 participants to nearly 900. The weeks ongoings cover everything from pleasure to condoms to just being smart so students know what to expect when their freedom moves into the realm of college and adulthood.
A new addition to the SHAC events book, Blur the Lines was a weeklong event that focused on spreading awareness for diversity within the residence halls and in the greater Milwaukee community. Students learned about race and ethnicity, immigration, gender and sexuality, income level, and hunger through a series of games and activities that kept students aware of their personal judgements.
So students could have one last day of relaxation before the start of crazy exam week, the SHAC Events Coordinator and STAR teamed together to make a Relaxation Week. The first night was hosted by K-Von, a well known comedian often featured on MTV’s Disaster Date so students could laugh off some of the tension. The next day featured massage therapists, comfort food, exfoliating washes, and fireside games so students could sleep well before studying all night.
SHAC has brought up-and-coming Hypnotist, Chris Jones to the residence halls twice in the past year. Once at the end of the 2013 Spring Semester to act as a buffer between class and exams, and again at the start of the 2014 Spring Semester as part of the Winter Welcome-Back festivities. Chris Jones was also featured at the statewide RA conference hosted by UWM in February 2014.
Panthers Pay it Forward
As a welcome to housing event, SHAC hosted a philanthropic event that included several options for contribution. Students were able to tie fleece blanket which were donated to the Children’s Hospital, make textured dolls for blind children, and decorate glass vases and tissue paper flowers for local nursing homes. The last part of the event included composing thank you letters and cards for members of the military overseas.
The A-MAZE-ing SHAC Adventure
“The A-Maze-ing SHAC Adventure” was a weekend event in which students in the residence halls took a bus to Homestead Animal Farm. This farm also included a petting zoo, an interactive maze, and hayrides. This event provided students the opportunity to enjoy a traditional fall experience they may have been accustomed to at home and had been missing while away at school. 12
Major Motion Pictures On campus, there are several programming boards, the largest of which is the Campus Activities Board (CAB). Other campus organizations including SHAC and Eighth Note Coffeehouse produce programs for the campus community as well. While there is almost always an event taking place on campus, there are several major events which are heavily promoted. Fall Welcome
Fall Welcome is a new yearly tradition to welcome all students back to campus. It is a week packed with events, culminating with Pantherfest, a concert held on the Milwaukee Summerfest grounds. A few of the events held include a Brewers Game, Panther Dance, Condom Olympics, movie nights, Gasthaus Trivia, an outdoor carnival, a trip to Target, and a Chancellor’s Welcome Dinner.
Fall Welcome culmulates at Pantherfest, a large concert taking place at the Marcus Ampetheater downtown. Performers are picked based on a survey sent to all students and free tickets and transportation are provided to all students. This year the performers were Matt & Kim and Mac Miller.
Similar to Fall Welcome, Winter Welcome is a weeks worth of activities beginning the weekend before Spring Semester classes begin.
Geek Week is a collection of events occuring in early February where many student organizations such as CAB, SHAC, and the Comic Book Club come together for geeky campus events such as a “Hack-a-thon,” and guest speaker Bill Nye the Science Guy.
Right before exams, CAB hosts a relaxation day in the student union. It has massages, an oxygen bar, and other relaxing activities.
Alternative Spring Break
Since 2012 UW-Milwaukee has annually organized an Alternative Spring Break program in which students spend a week volunteering in a community in need. This past year a group of over forty students and staff members traveled to Asheville, North Carolina. They spent time serving at various non-profit agencies and focused on developing their leadership skills.
On Location Filming Conferences have always been a big event for UWM students, as we bring a delegation made up of SHAC, NRHH, RAs, and residents. We do our best to bring a mix of new faces and veterans who can help lead the way. We encourage each veteran who is presenting a program to pick a first time delegate to co-present so that the new students can learn the process of planning, organizing, and presenting a program at conferences. We strive to make conferences a learning experience for all by focusing on teamwork and reflection.
At this wild conference the delegation rocked out to Ke$ha and the Harlem Shake in roll call. We won the Student of the Year bid for Kenlei Cowell. Two programs were presented, titled A Walk to Die For and Gotta Catch Em All: Events Edition. Three UWM students were awarded two-year service pins.
No Frills 2013
A veteran NCC introduced the NRHH-CC, a first-time conference attendee, to boardroom. Within no time the NRHH-CC was participating in discussion and proudly representing UW-Milwaukee.
At this conference we bid for Program of the Year, (R)evolutionized the conference with a Les Misérables theme, and carpooled there with three other Wisconsin schools, leading to new friendships being formed along the way. Three programs were presented: (R)evolutionize your team dynamics: student leaders with healthy confrontation styles; That ‘90s Show; and Your RHA Facebook is Bad, and You Should Feel Bad.
While the NCC had been in boardroom before while in training for her position, this was her first conference where she served as the UW-Milwaukee NCC. The delegation had fun by doing the Wobble all over campus. Bids were submitted for Advisor of the Year and Student Award for Leadership Training.
Wisconsin Student Staff Conference 2013
A delegation of UWM RAs attended this leadership conference and made sure to get involved by presenting multiple programs.
Wisconsin Student Staff Conference 2014
This year UW-Milwaukee is hosting this conference with a theme of “Stay Classy, Wisconsin.” Approximately 100 student delegates and 15 Professional staff advisors will be in attendance representing 11 Wisconsin schools. We chose the theme as a way to feature out UWM University Housing’s CLASS (Cultural Understanding, Leadership Skills, Academic Success, Social Responsibility, and Social Connections) programming model. All programs presented by RAs and professional staff during the conference will fall into one of those categories. We will have a total of 30 programs being presented during five rounds of presentations. We are also providing evening entertainment and social opportunities for delegates. 14
Inclusive Programming UW-Milwaukee ranks a 4.5 out of 5 on the LGBT-friendly Campus Climate Index and is considered one of the most LGBT friendly campuses in the nation. Much of this comes from UWMâ€™s dedication to making the student experience positive for every student. This goes beyond the on-campus LGBT Resource Center to every department on campus. Inclusive Housing As of 2013 we offer inclusive housing, which gives an option for a safe living space for students who self-select and self-identify as gender non-conforming or who have other cultural or identity considerations related to living in the residence halls at UWMilwaukee and students who identify as allies. Additionally, there are all-male and all-female floors for students with religious, social, or personal reasons for not living in a co-ed environment. UWM is the first UW-system campus to offer these options to
LGBT Resource Center The LGBT Resource Center began in 2002 as a resource center for the LGBT+ community and its allies. It hosts programming, provides counceling, and oversees the harassment reporting process.
UWM Drag Show The UWM Drag Show occurs in mid-February and is the largest of its kind in the midwest. It attracts students, local community members, and LGBT+ supporters from across the country. It serves as a social and educational event that is free to students.
Safe Space Many departments, advisor offices, professor and academic staff offices, every housing professional staff member office, and the SHAC and NRHH office are Safe Spaces. This means that all students are able to come in and talk about any issues (including those beyond LGBT issues) in a non-judgemental environment. In order to become a Safe Space all employees who work in the office must go through training provided by the LGBT resource center.
Inclusive Excellence Center The Inclusine Excellence Center is an office which is dedicated to creating an open and positive atomosphere for all students on campus. While open to all students, the center focuses on historically underrepresented students. Their ultimate goal is for all students at UW-Milwaukee to have the ability to succeed and enjoy being a UWM student.
Community OUtreach UW-Milwaukee is dedicated to making sure that its students are also good neighbors and community members. Through student organizations, volunteer events, and a dedicated community volunteerism office, over 30% of students actively volunteer on campus and in the community. Community Design Solutions (CDS)
Community Design Solutions is a student led community design outreach organization which pairs designers and community need. These services include neighborhood visioning, streetscape and landscape planning, sustainable development and design, designing for special needs and activities, urban green space planning, and more. Based out of the School of Architecture and Urban Planning, Community Design Solutions allows students to get real world experience.
Habitat for Humanity (H4H)
H4Hat UW-Milwaukee is a student led campus organization with a focus of helping educate the community on issues relating to homelessness and poverty. It aims to have a positive impact on the Milwaukee community as well as other places around the world by reducing poverty and homelessness. They also work to educate the community about substandard housing and the impact each person can have in making a difference. Volunteers may donate their time to several different aspects of the process including sorting through donated items at the Milwaukee Restore, building new homes, and assisting homeowners with exterior home maintenance. This year they are hosting a week entitled “Act! Speak! Build” to raise awareness about the homelessness in Milwaukee and around the world through art. H4H also provides student with the opportunity to participate in an alternative spring break program where they travel somewhere in the nation for a build project.
Each year UW-Milwaukee hosts an event entitled “Hunger Clean-Up”. This is an opportunity for students to make a difference in the community through a day devoted entirely to service work. Around 500 students volunteer to help local non-profits, assist local elderly residents, and do a massive neighborhood clean-up around campus. This year the coordinators of the event have gone one step further to increase the impact this day of service has by incorporating a fundraiser to raise money for Interfaith Older Adult Programs.
The RAK-a-THON is a day for Random Acts of Kindness. Similar to the Hunger Clean-up, this is an event in which students come together to help improve the community that surrounds our campus. Approximately 500 UWM students, faculty, and staff come together to help local elderly residents prepare their homes for winter by doing tasks such as putting up storm windows, cleaning patios, and raking leaves.
Center for Community-Based Learning, Leadership, & Research (CCBLLR)
The CCBLLR was established in 2012 with a mission to partner with the community to inspire students, faculty, and staff to engage in activities that foster enduring personal and social change. It promotes student civic and leadership experience through a holistic and seamless approach to community engagement. The center offers opportunities for volunteer service, academic servicelearning, leadership development, and community-based work-study. 16
In the past year we did a complete re-write of the SHAC governing documents, moving from six conflicting, repeating, and confusing documents to one concise and clear constitution. Previously when trying to look up guidelines for the organization we found ourselves scavenging to find documents that were located in difference places and may or may not have been the most up-to-date versions. We decided to collect everything we could find, combine it into one document, and review everything word-for-word in order to create a user-friendly constitution that would aid instead of hinder our organization.
Community Council Expansion
Over the history of SHAC, councils are a relatively new feature. The step we took in the past year was to split our three existing councils into six smaller councils in order to allow for better representation of residents, more leadership opportunities, stronger community identities, and more events. While this was a big leap of faith to take without knowing for sure if enough students would step up to the plate to fill in the now double amount of positions, all six councils have found success.
As councils have grown and changed, it was difficult to have consistency and order over time. We targeted that problem by introducing basic constitutions for each council which they could amend as they saw fit in order to find a system that works best for them. This created a resource that helped students find order in their organization as well as maintain fair and democratic processes.
A challenge we faced early this school year was filling an empty spot on the SHAC executive board. According to the guidelines we were to fill the vacancy similarly to how we elect officers each year, but we found that it required much more time than was reasonable to get things up and running. Thus, we amended the constitution to allow for vacancies to be filled in a more efficient manner by eliminating unnecessary wait time.
Each year when electing a new executive board we establish an Independent Election Commission (IEC), whose duty it is to ensure fair and just elections which are in accordance with the SHAC Constitution. Previously the IEC had the power to amend election rules as they saw fit, but we decided that it was undemocratic for the handful of people runnning the elections to be able to make those decisions. We amended the SHAC Constitution so that elections rules and procedures could only be amended by a vote of the SHAC general body. 17
Going Green on Set UW-Milwaukee takes going green very seriously. With its own Office of Sustainability, recycling and sustainability projects are common sights on campus. Furthermore, multiple sustainability committees and clubs allow students to play an active role in green initiatives. Zero Discharge Zone
As the City of Milwaukee has difficulties processing wastewater during storms, UWMilwaukee became committed to turning the campus into a zero discharge zone. This means that any water that falls on the campus will be retained in green roofs, retention ponds, etc. instead of being immediately discharged into the sewers.
This club was started in October of 2013. Its main objective is to educate students about our ecosystems, community, and neighborhoods. They also identify as a club that hopes to help students get outside more often and to build friendships among students with a shared passion for the environment.
This year our Residence Life department switched to single sort recycling in order to make the process simpler and more convenient for all residents. Residents were provided a reusable bag in their suite during move-in to encourage recycling in each room. Each floor has a location to dispose of single sort recycling that is conveniently located next to the trash disposal. All residents were made aware of the different means to dispose of their waste through posters, bulletin boards, flyers, and discussions with RAs.
Composting in the cafeteria is greatly encouraged this year. There are several containers labeled as compost for residents to use. These containers are conveniently located near the regular trash cans and tray drop off points. These containers are labeled with laminated instructions and large images to help students understand what does or does not belong in the composting.
Growing Power and UW-Milwaukeeâ€™s Food and Garden Club collaborated to create our very own hoop house on campus. The hoop house allows for year-round gardening which helps to supply our residential cafeterias with fresh fruits and vegetables.
Campus gardens were built in Spring 2012 next to Sandburg Hall. They include community beds, gardening plots for Restaurant Operations, and an assortment of trees including hazelnut, plum, pear, and apricot. A pergola, pathways, and seating areas were added to give the campus community a greater ability to enjoy the gardents.
There are three buildings on campus with green roofs. Cambridge Commons has small green roofs on two portions of the building, Sandburg Residence Hall has a green roof over the commons, and the Golda Meir Library is home to the largest green roof in the State of Wisconsin at 33,000 square feet.
Accounting Department Since UWM has so many on-campus residents, SHAC is fortunate enough to have a generous budget between itself and its councils. SHAC is dedicated to ensuring that University Housing residents get as much as possible for their money by being frugal and carefully considering every purchase made by the executive board and general body. Furthermore, SHAC has taken steps to ensure that SHAC will not be a financial burden on students with financial aid. SHAC Budget 2013-2014 Exec Payroll
$9,500 $7,500 $1,000 $500 $600 $2,000 $500 $2,250 $45,350
$21,500 $3,300 $4,020 $4,020 $2,800 $4,030 $3,030 $19,000 $7,500 $1,000 $1,000 $1,200 $4,000 $1,000 $4,500 $75,200
Councils East Purin North South West Cambridge RiverView Events Conferences Computer Operations Public Relations Office Supplies Committees Reserves Discretionary Totals
*President Cowell chose not to recieve her first semester honorarium.
After discovering that SHAC executives were the highest paid RHA execs in the state, the executive board made the decision to cut all executive board honorariums in half. Additionally, SHAC no longer gave honorariums to council presidents. This means that slightly more than $10,000 is distributed to councils, programming, committees, and conferences each year instead of to a small group of students, a much more fair use of funding.
Funding Changes Prior to this year, SHAC was funded by a $20 per semester per resident which was also distributed to NRHH, RAs, and other programming. This year that fee was consolidated into the cost of housing so that financial aid dispursements can automatically cover it rather than requiring the student to pay out-of-pocket.
Fundraisers SHAC has two fundraisers to generate extra income. First, it partners with On Campus Marketing for five care packages per year. In Spring of 2013 SHAC renewed their contract after having met with OCM representatives. SHAC also partners with OCMâ€™s Linen program to provide sheets for students to purchase at the beginning of the year. After collaborating with the International Student Services Office who had a similar fundraiser, SHAC renwed their contract with OCM. All care packages are handled by the Care Package Committee which is chaired by the SHAC Business Manager. Additionally, if a student does not claim their care package after a certain time will be distributed to council representativess to deliver to the studentâ€™s door. 19
Production Setbacks UW-Milwaukee is not without its obstacles for student leaders. How these leaders respond to difficult situations, however, is what sets us apart. With a desire to make our school better, obstacles became opportunities for greater success. Student Court Case
In the spring of the 2013 a formal complaint and temporary restraining order request were taken out against SHAC and the executive board by a resident. We were charged to be in violation of Wisconsin State Open Meeting Law and UWM Student Association regulations, to be undermining the legal rights of students to utilize the University Student Court, and to not be exercising the authority granted to student governance bodies by the state of Wisconsin. If it sounds confusing to you, thatâ€™s because it was to us as well. A student who none of the executive board had met before or even heard of was bringing us to student court because our governing documents and procedures didnâ€™t line up with rules and regulations that he believed SHAC was legally required to adhere to. We proved to be running in a legal manner and that all of the complaints brought against us were unfounded because we are not legally required to comply with any of the rules and regulations used against us. It was a messy ordeal, but dealing with this court case proved the strength of both our executive board and our organization as a whole.
Student Association Election Fraud
Election fraud forced university administration to defraud the election of the Student Association (SA). Fortunately, students from nearly every school and major student organization banded together to form the Board of Trustees which has been diligent in creating an ethical and positive Student Association which is already successfully funding student organizations, staffing university committies, and promoting a positive environment at UW-Milwaukee. Amendments to the SA Constitution were approveed by the entire studeent body, and elections procedures are currently in process to select next yearâ€™s SA members.
Events Coordinator Vacancies
At the start of the 2013-14 school year, SHAC was still in need of an Events Coordinator. We recruited and found interested candidates, but we faced the challenge of the election criteria in regards to the amount of time it would take to elect an executive board member. When we calculated it out we realized we would still be without an Events Coordinator at least two months into the semester. In order to expedite this process we constructed legislation that allowed all who were interested to run and be elected through a process with our General Body without the need for an Independent Election Committee. This legislation was fully supported and voted on by our General Body; they too felt filling the position as soon as possible was detrimental in recruiting and sparking the interest of residents as early in the school year as possible. Three individuals ran for the position and the entire election served as an educational and informative experience for the new, less-experienced General Body representatives. Unfortunately, at the end of fall semester our Events Coordinator informed us that she would be transferring to another university. With even more legislation and the support of our General Body members, our President approached the individual who came in second place during the fall elections with an offer for the Events Coordinator position. This individual was extremely enthusiastic in helping our Events Coordinator while she was still with us so transitioned smoothly into her role once the position was officially hers. While the complications we faced this year in finding and keeping an Events Coordinator may not have seemed ideal, they were very beneficial for us as a team. Our Executive Board worked together to plan and execute events along with fulfilling all of their regular duties. Our General Body learned about the election process, they were given an opportunity to run for a larger leadership position, and they were given the chance to work with parliamentary procedure and the process of amending governing documents. This experience may have been a challenge but it has been one that has strengthened us all as a team. 20
February 4, 2013 Dear WURHA Directorship and Wisconsin Communications Coordinators, Three years ago, I enrolled as a scholar at the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee. I admit, I was expecting my college career to be centralized around the classroom and my academics. However, since coming to this urban campus I have learned that being a Milwaukee Panther means more than scholastic success, it means learning and growing through the diverse community of instructors, advisors, students, athletes, neighbors, and everyone else who makes up the campus which offers a plethora of opportunities for development and dreaming. The tremendous growth this institution, especially the growth within residents life, has seen over the past three years has been astounding. I feel both honored and blessed that I have been one of the many students to witness the recent successes of UW Milwaukee due to my involvement with the Student Housing Administrative Council. Please allow me to share with you some of the highlights of our campus community that make UW Milwaukee an excellent candidate for the WURHA 2014 School of the Year. The development of Community Councils three years ago earned UW Milwaukee the title of WURHA 2012 Building Block of the Year. Since then, the leaders that have come through the Student Housing Administrative Council (SHAC) have developed the Community Council concept even further. We split our councils from three area councils to six hall councils. The reason this change took place was to offer more leadership training for first year students because with twice as many councils we have twice as many executive board seats, twice as many advisors, and most importantly twice as many chances to reach students. We thought leadership would be the best result of splitting the councils. In hindsight, we were wrong. Beyond the leadership positions, the new hall councils have given the students in each building the chance to brand their council and have more pride in their communities. By building stronger Community Councils with stronger and more enthusiastic leaders, the residence halls have been able to connect the incoming class with the other organizations in housing and across campus. In the past year I have seen the students of UW Milwaukee seek out more opportunities to show their personal beliefs on what it means to be a Panther. SHAC representatives in the Sustainability Committee and UWM Conservation Club have banded together to reduce our carbon footprint by petitioning the administration to get recycling bins in all of the residence hall's suites, as well as single-sort recycling. They also have worked with Restaurant Operations to ensure students have a better understanding of the composting process and worked to develop a composting hoop house right on campus. Participation in Living and Learning Communities is up, especially since we added the Panther Military, Veterans, and ROTC LCC which is available to non-first year students. Students around campus are making sure they have their voice heard in the decisions our institutin makes. We have several student representatives on committees to boost Panther Pride, select Panther performers, and welcome incoming Panthers into our community. The students who aren't necessarily seen as the most involved have even took a stand and shown their appreciation for our school. The Panther After Dark series, which offers an alternative to partying on Thursday nights has had a huge turnout. Participants in SHAC events has grown with over 600 people attending SHAC's Sex Week this fall. Even Panther fan numbers at sporting events has gone up. It is with great pleasure that I give my fully support to the UW Milwaukee WURHA delegation, and I strongly encourage you to consider this nomination. With such a tremendous number of students, faculty, and staff who have shown the Panther Pride on our campus and in our community, there is no doubt in my mind that the University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee is worthy of the WURHA 2014 School of the Year Award. Sincerely,
Kenlei Lenae Cowell Student Housing Administrative Council President
University Housing Residence Life
3400 N. Maryland Ave. Milwaukee, WI 53211-2953 414-229-5712 February 1, 2014 Dear WURHA Directorship and Wisconsin Communications Coordinators (WCCs): Almost four years ago, I came to the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee and University Housing. As someone with a strong leadership background in my undergraduate career, I continue to want to support a vibrant residential leadership program. I can attest that in the last three years, the Student Housing Administrative Council, Panther Chapter of National Residence Hall Honorary, and University Housing have made significant progress toward engaging a larger group of residential student leaders. Three WURHA’s ago, UW Milwaukee bid for and won Building RHA of the Year at WURHA 2012 hosted by UW-River Falls. Two years later, I would like to enthusiastically support a new group of leaders who have taken on some tough challenges and make significant changes for the better at UW Milwaukee. Please allow me to share three examples of why I believe UW Milwaukee should be selected as WURHA 2014 School of the Year. Community Councils: Two years ago, the Student Housing Administrative Council executive team decided to pilot the use of Area Councils. This was not particular popular with the current SHAC team, but they had seen success happen at other schools through participation in organizations like NACURH, GLACURH, and WURHA. The first reason I would support UW Milwaukee and the Student Housing Administrative Council is the creation of full-fledged community councils last March and elections this past September. Many executive board members thought the community councils could not succeed because there were “not enough leaders to support an RHA and community councils at UW Milwaukee.” This year, I have seen greater hall involvement and participation because of the local leaders created at the community council level. This would not have been possible with the previous “area council” model that favored the larger of the two halls in the two halls paired up in our three Area Councils. Particularly in our traditional first-year buildings, having a community council has meant more engagement with programs, events, and hall improvements that previous student and professional staff would have led in the past. Governance and Accountability: Last February-April 2013, the SHAC executive board made really tough choices and went through a period of self-reflection about the purpose and function of SHAC and NRHH. As a result, the executive board re-wrote significant portions of the job responsibilities, governance duties (including how elections are run, and voted to significant reduce the executive board compensation (stipend) per year. Each of these changes went up for a vote in front of the SHAC representatives. While none of these tasks was earth-shattering, the group had meaningful and difficult conversations about the purpose and future of the organization in a way that had not been done in quite some time. Changes were initiated by students, not staff. This was a huge step for our leadership team and worthy of recognition of the progress they have made. Engagement: UW Milwaukee has always been involved, but the SHAC executive board last year and this year have made strides at being more inclusive, developing leaders that were not student staff members (RAs), and doing more train emerging leaders. Conference delegations for WURHA, GLACURH, and NACURH (as well as to some campus leadership trainings) have been more students in leadership roles instead of student staff members. More programming and events are happening at both the hall and campus level. Also, SHAC brought a hypnotist from Chicago (April 2013) and an MTV comedian from Los Angeles (December 2013) to further enhance the campus-level programs being offered by SHAC. SHAC has really morphed in the campus-level government and allowed some of the traditional hall programs to move back to community councils where it belongs. Additionally, as discussed before, the community councils are really helping to get more students at the floor level involved in student leadership. UW Milwaukee has always been a consistent and involved member of WURHA, GLACURH, and NACURH. We are the institution that brings full delegations, presents programs, submits award bids, participates in spirit and banner competitions, and occasionally rocks an all-star roll call. What is changing about our institution, housing program, and SHAC/NRHH, is that we are getting more average students involved in leadership roles. Our student leaders have truly been making tough decisions and building strong governing documents to create more engagement of the average resident and better fulfillment core functions of SHAC: resources, representation, and leadership development. I strongly encourage you to select them as WURHA 2014 School of the Year. Sincerely,
Matt Crouse Assistant Director of Residence Life