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Faculty Viewbook Exceptional educators with high-impact interests


Introduction 360° OF LEARNING

Excellent faculty make an exceptional university. The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s internationally recognized faculty exemplify “360° of Learning” by providing students learning experiences that span the globe and human history. In the following pages you will be introduced to several of these talented scholars who make a personal impact on the lives and education experiences of UW-Green Bay students. From the forests of Central America to the schools of Cuernavaca, from Alexander the Great to the works of Thomas Paine, and from boardrooms of community businesses to concert halls, our faculty also add to the vibrancy and intellectual ambience of the greater Green Bay community, and in fact, the world. UW-Green Bay students are provided the highest quality teaching by the highest quality faculty. In the following pages, we would like to share their impact with you. Go Phoenix,

Julia Wallace Provost, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay


Costa Rica Prof. Matt Dornbush Prof. Kevin Fermanich Natural and Applied ScienceS (Biology) Passion: Engaging students in scientific understanding and importance of conserving global biodiversity and the world’s natural resources Each year students interact with staff at Carara National Park, engaging in discussions about maintaining one of Costa Rica’s national treasures, and the challenges of limited funding, poaching, illegal logging, pollution, and the ecological pressures that tourism brings. This trip inspires UW-Green Bay students to pursue graduate work and careers in environmental science, biology, and related fields. “Nothing brings home the reality of challenges of conserving global biodiversity like seeing the firsthand consequences of a $5,000 annual budget for a 20-square mile park, or meeting with rural school children whose parents poach within the park, a necessity to feed their families,” says Professor Matt Dornbush. Over the years the trip has provided opportunities for more than 100 UW-Green Bay students to contribute to Carara and gain unique life experiences. The trip reinvigorates the faculty leaders who are often called on to share their work in the local community.

Prof. Matt Dornbush

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“Nothing brings home the reality of challenges of conserving global biodiversity like seeing the firsthand consequences of a $5,000 annual budget for a 20-square mile park, or meeting with rural school children whose parents poach within the park, a necessity to feed their families.”


Prof. AMY WOLF

“Because of the Panama course and its spin-offs, UW-Green Bay students are literally ‘plugged into’ international science networks. Best of all, the opportunities keep growing.”

Panama ProfESSORS/RESEARCHERS Robert Howe, Amy Wolf, Michael Draney, Vicki Medland Natural and Applied ScienceS (Biology) Passion: Using scientific methods to explore and protect the world’s biodiversity and mentoring students to do the same When UW-Green Bay science students register for a research opportunity in Panama, theirs is the invitation to explore, dream and discover, right alongside internationally recognized teachers and researchers. Students work closely with faculty to collect and analyze data for long-term scientific investigations that may include rain forest surveys of bats, birds, spiders, or fungi; or studies of corals and mangroves along Panama’s tropical Caribbean coast. Their work doesn’t end with a short immer-

sion trip. In 2011, UWGB alum Jennifer Goyette published a paper in the Journal of Field Ornithology based on her research during the 2008 Panama trip. Last summer, student Marian Shaffer returned to Panama on a Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute research internship with geologist Dr. Aaron O’Dea. The trip, itself, is “awe-inspiring,” says Prof. Bob Howe, but its importance, he says, is “measured by what happens to students when we get back.

In many cases, this is the most incredible part of the experience.” Students have many other hands-on opportunities as well. In the University’s collaboration with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, more than 100 students since 2008 have participated in field research at the Wabikon Forest Dynamics Plot in northern Wisconsin, contributing to an ambitious global network of forest study sites in Central and South America, Africa, Asia, Oceania, Europe, and elsewhere in North America.

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Katia Levintova PROFESSOR, PUBLIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL AFFAIRS Passion: Inspiring students to think globally Each year Prof. Ekaterina Levintova’s Global Summit receives a 95 percent plus “approval rating” — students who suggest she continue it the following year. But that’s not why she makes it a requirement. It’s because of the transformation that occurs in the students, she says. For the summit, students in her American Government and Global Politics classes are placed in teams of six to role play representatives of a country. They participate in a pre-summit “convention” to select their roles and receive instruction. Over the next several weeks, students research their assigned country’s environmental, social, economic, and political problems that pertain to sustainable development, and they learn about the role their country plays in international sustainable development efforts and international affairs in general. Each delegation creates a United Nations-like resolution on sustainable development, addressing both national needs and international priorities. “The learning objective is for students to leave the summit empowered as citizens, with an increased understanding of and appreciation for global citizenship, domestic and global negotiations and policymaking, knowledgeable about their own country and the complexities of the world,” Levintova says. “I can see transformation in students when they start thinking about world problems from a perspective of a different country, say, Rwanda or Vietnam. It increases cultural empathy. Based on statistical analysis, participating students demonstrated increased levels of knowledge about global politics and said they felt more comfortable discussing foreign policy. They saw global politics had a relevance in their own lives and felt that they were able to influence their own government and could contribute to the global community.”

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Scott Ashmann Professor, EDUCATION Passion: Teaching current and future teachers to be leaders in science Thanks to the efforts of Prof. Scott Ashmann, science instruction in Wisconsin is just a little more fun, more novel, and more meaningful. Ashmann leads elementary school teachers each summer, and throughout the school year, to better incorporate science into daily classroom activities. In collaboration with other University faculty members, he teaches them hands-on experiments, innovative ways of

assessing student knowledge, various strategies for enhancing content knowledge in many science-related areas. Through his work with The Einstein Project, a Green Bay-based, non-profit organization that provides leadership and support for science education in Wisconsin, he has helped impact science instruction for more than 4,000 teachers and 750,000 K-8 students in 350 schools.

“There are many challenges facing elementary school teachers to teach more science in their classrooms,” says Ashmann. “This project addresses two of these challenges by enhancing participants’ science knowledge and the teachers’ science teaching skills. Eventually, we want students to be able to come up with conclusions to scientific questions that are based on data and reasoning, and maintain their curiosity about the world around them.”

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Prof. Christine Vandenhouten

“UW-Green Bay students return willing and prepared to work with the Spanish-speaking populations both in Northeast Wisconsin and abroad, especially in the medical and education fields, and more frequently, in the business community, as well.”

Cuernavaca Lucy Arendt, Professor, Business Administration Steve Kimball, Professor, Education Christine Vandenhouten, Professor, Nursing Passion: Providing an immersion experience in Mexico that translates to Northeast Wisconsin and beyond It’s a collaboration that occurs more than 1,000 miles away, but the impact is felt close to home. UW-Green Bay students and faculty in Education, Business and Nursing, travel to Cuernavaca, Mexico, where they immerse themselves in Mexico’s culture, language and people.  Spanish language instruction is a focus each morning and afternoons are filled with excursions and lectures specific to the students’ areas of study.  

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Profs. Lucy Arendt, Steve Kimball and Christine Vandenhouten lead the excursions involving an overview of Mexican culture with business, education and nursing emphases, respectfully. Students study Spanish together each day and then break out in areas of their discipline — meeting with business professionals, visiting schools or spending time in area hospitals.

Students learn quickly to consider other cultures and apply what they’ve learned at home. One student, for example, returned to work at her parish food bank that served many Mexican immigrant families, educating parish volunteers in the process about typical diets and other cultural values. These experiences also help Education majors increase their professional portfolios for the highly competitive job market.


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Jennifer Lanter PROFESSOR, HUMAN DEVELOPMENT Passion: Turning research into child’s play As early as their sophomore years at UW-Green Bay, undergraduates are contributing to high-level studies of cognitive development and language acquisition in children. Prof. Jennifer Lanter directs the University’s Language Learning Lab, where over the course of a semester, she and typically four undergraduate research assistants work with more than 75 children, to observe toddlers’ play and their completion of simple tasks. The results provide a detailed description and explanation of early childhood language abilities and enrich a database related to skill and language development.  “We see a great advantage in our students getting involved in research opportunities as soon as possible,” says Lanter.  Her academic unit, Human Development, even requires a researchmethods prerequisite so that students have a solid preparation for upper-level courses. “Over time, students have the opportunity to participate often in graduate-level laboratory work, as well as get to know professors and, even more important, have professors get to know their quality of work. This speaks volumes in a letter of recommendation to a future graduate school or employer,” says Lanter. Some of her students have been able to co-present at regional and national conferences as well as co-author a major academic paper. Those are the portfolio-building experiences that graduate schools and employers look favorably upon.  “Also, what’s great for our students is they’re not just feeding numbers into the computer, or doing  paperwork. They’re working with  children, connecting with the parents and child-care providers, and learning five different experimental  procedures, all at once.”

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Gregory Aldrete Frankenthal Professor PROFESSOR, History and Humanistic Studies Passion: Sharing history through hands-on learning Prof. Gregory Aldrete and his students have received international attention for the “Linothorax Project,” an investigation into a mysterious type of armor that was widely used in the ancient world and worn by powerful figures such as Alexander the Great. The project involves reconstructing the armor, made of glued layers of linen, based on ancient textual descriptions and images. They then fol-

low up with extensive scientific testing, subjecting the armor to arrow strikes and hatchet blows. “The Linothorax Project is an example of experimental archaeology — an innovative and growing area of research,” Aldrete says. “This sort of archaeology has an explicitly interdisciplinary methodology, which makes UWGB an especially appropriate and welcoming home

for our project. I like to bring in physical objects from the ancient world, or to have students construct them, because it is only by handling and using such artifacts yourself that you can really understand their purpose, and it is also one way of making even the ancient past come alive and have relevance for today’s students.”

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Business Week Bill Lepley, Professor, Business Administration David Radosevich, Professor, Business Administration Larry McGregor, Lecturer, Business Administration Passion: Preparing business students to transition from successful student to valuable employee Working together across Academic Affairs, Career Services and the Business Administration academic program, faculty and staff integrated formerly free-standing programs, invited international speakers to campus, and engaged the local business community in creating a highly successful “Business Week,” now an anticipated annual event hosted by the Cofrin School of Business.

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360° OF LEARNING

Through the weeklong event, hundreds of UWGreen Bay students are introduced to current business leaders and tomorrow’s working environment via alumni and management panels, a job and internship fair, an etiquette luncheon, a business plan competition and plenty of networking opportunities. Every year participants are treated to the sage advice of a successful business leader in a keynote event.

“Our goal is to help our students bridge the gap from the classroom to the boardroom by offering a variety of opportunities to learn from, and network with, business professionals,” said Radosevich. “For the students who have not had a professional job or internship, Business Week offers several opportunities for them to adjust their expectations of being a professional and accelerate their knowledge of local businesses.”


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Cheryl Grosso Professor, Music Passion: Sharing her love of music and all things percussion with students Music Professor Cheryl Grosso’s scholarship spans conducting, composing, performing and publishing, but helping students explore the art of music is her true passion. Grosso is the music director and conductor for the Contemporary Percussion Ensemble, the New Music Ensemble, and the Hand Drumming Ensemble — a group founded and directed by Grosso, and a favorite among schools and festivals throughout Wisconsin. There’s something special about a professor who can junk pick materials to construct “instruments” for new sounds, and create nationally recognized and award-winning compositions performed by her own students and appreciated by the masses.  Grosso remains active as a composer,  percussion soloist, chamber musician and clinician. Her award-winning compositions are widely recognized in her field, earning a Kennedy Center ACTF Award of Merit and first place designation by the California Filmmakers Association. “UW-Green Bay provides an environment that allows me to engage with students in a multitude of ways at a critical time in their development,” she says. “It is an honor to be even a small part of this process.”

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Harvey Kaye Ben AND Joyce ROSENBERG Professor professor, democracy and justice studies Director of the Center for History and Social Change Prof. Harvey Kaye believes UW-Green Bay students deserve the same kinds of opportunities that students at larger institutions enjoy. Since 1985, Kaye and his family have personally hosted more than 100 historians, social scientists, artists, and journalists to share their ideas and perspectives with the community.   From classroom to hallway conversation, Kaye’s zest for life and passion for history, writing and debate, radiates from his very

being. It has also made him a welcome guest on national radio and television shows. His work as director of UW-Green Bay’s Center for History and Social Change and Historical Perspectives Lecture Series — the series that brings those aforementioned VIPs to Kaye’s home and classroom — is especially notable and appreciated by campus and community, alike.  

Speakers such as renowned British historians George Rude and E.P. Thompson, known for their studies of the role of the common people in history, and columnists such as David Brooks of The New York Times and E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post, challenge the intellect and expand the learning opportunities for the UW-Green Bay community.

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Laura Riddle Professor, Theatre Passion: Theatre. The research, the storytelling, the opportunities to explore…  Prof. Laura Riddle’s task is rewarding. Take a cast of students from UW-Green Bay’s Theatre program, mix in a professional if possible, sprinkle in talented alumni support and create a performance worthy of a standing ovation.  Riddle is the director of many of UW-Green Bay Theatre’s plays and performances. Recently, the spotlight on Riddle and her cast and crew shone brighter than ever, as Theatre joined forces with UWGB Music to perform the musical Cabaret on the main stage of the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts. The mammoth production successfully transformed a University stage into a place of social and political upheaval in 1930 Berlin, for a two-night audience extravaganza. The accolades are more of the same for a program recognized regionally and nationally for its talented faculty, students and technical expertise. None more deserving than the talented Riddle, who has been with UW-Green Bay since 1993. “Students going through this process learn professional practice and the art of collaboration,” she said. The type of skills learned by Theatre majors — collaboration, communication, discipline, dedication, and passion — take them far in a variety of pursuits.”

Prof. LAURA RIDDLE

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“A number of our graduates have beEN given work and internship opportunities from connections made working backstage on touring productions at the Weidner. Additionally, internships at regional theaters such as Peninsula Players and Milwaukee Rep have given students valuable contacts. Our graduates have an impressive list of accomplishments.”


LISA POUPART

“We’re the only school in the UW System that requires pre-service teachers to complete a three-credit course in First Nations Studies.”

Lisa Poupart Professor, Humanistic Studies; Chair, First Nations Studies Program Passion: Helping future teachers learn the history, culture, sovereignty and contemporary issues of American Indians, so they too, can share those lessons Leading a Center for First Nations Studies isn’t without its challenges, but it certainly has its rewards. Among them, students are able to learn from four tribal Elders from four different regional tribes (possibly the only academic program of its kind in the country). Each Elder is a scholar with considerable experience, and teaches in the tradition of First Nations oral teaching and learning. Students and

practicing teachers gain a deeper knowledge of American Indian history and culture, and in turn are better prepared to teach students. The Center was one of the reasons cited for UW-Green Bay’s Education program being named the top undergraduate program in the state of Wisconsin. Spending an afternoon with an Elder is a vastly different experience than students are

used to, but soon the apprehension evaporates. Students and teachers engage in honest education about Wisconsin’s First Nations. Although tribes and bands have their own history and traditions, there is a core set of values that extend across each — respect, reciprocity, responsibility and relationship. Those lessons are invaluable no matter the culture.

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Cristina Ortiz Professor AND cHAIR, MODERN LANGUAGES COORDINATOR, SPANISH PROGRAM Passion: Providing a collaborative environment in which her Spanish students can improve and achieve A former student asked Prof. Cristina Ortiz if UW-Green Bay still offered the “holistic” approach that she had experienced in the University’s Spanish program. The answer was “of course.” Spanish faculty are committed to providing their students with multiple learning opportunities outside the classroom. Students can take classes in different Spanishspeaking countries, but there is also a strong emphasis to practice their language skills right

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here, in the local community, including schools, hospitals, literacy centers, and other organizations.

agement strategies. These skills resonate with careers in education, but also business, finance, management, and many service opportunities.

Ortiz coordinates a program in which several UW-Green Bay students teach foreign languages, including French, German, Spanish and Japanese, to elementary school children at a local public school. They prepare lesson plans, create teaching strategies, and learn how to implement effective classroom man-

“These interactions are key to the students’ development of bilingual proficiency while at the same time they provide them with the knowledge, tools and practical experience needed to succeed in today’s world,” says Ortiz.


Award-Winning Faculty UW-Green Bay faculty take pride in a problem-focused, interdisciplinary approach to teaching. It’s an award-winning practice…. Prof. Greg Aldrete (page 9) is the latest in a long line of UW-Green Bay faculty members recognized with teacher- or professor-ofthe-year honors by major state and national organizations. Five of these prestigious awards have come within the last few years alone. CASE/Carnegie Teacher of the Year 2012 – Greg Aldrete 2009 – Regan A.R. Gurung (pictured, right) 1991 – Joyce Salisbury UW System Teaching Excellence Award 2011 – Regan Gurung 2011 – Education program 2004 – Denise Scheberle 2000 – Joan Thron 1996 – John Harris 1994 – Human Development program 1993 – Joseph Moran National Political Science Teacher of the Year 2012 – Denise Scheberle National Geography Teacher of the Year 1992 – William Laatsch Facts about our Faculty 154 teach full time 97% hold Ph.D. or highest credential in their field Our STUDENT/FACULTY RATIO is 25-to-1 Research boosts teaching Faculty lead both entry-level and advanced courses and are also active researchers. Faculty research interests • Methane generation from solids and food waste • Effects of age and stress on memory • Labor relations • Language preservation • Improving literacy of at-risk children • New methods of recovering fingerprints • Bedrock beneath Brown County • Holistic nursing • Death and grieving • And many more topics


360˚ OF LEARNING 2420 Nicolet Drive Green Bay, WI 54311


UW-Green Bay Faculty Viewbook 2013  

UW-Green Bay FacultyViewbook 2013: Exceptional educators with high-impact interests

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