Category Archives: In The Classroom

Vet Lounge 002

Supporting Our UWGB Veterans

UWGB is ranked No. 26 in the Midwest for 2015 Best Colleges for Veterans. So it is not surprising that last week the Chancellor’s Council on Diversity and Inclusive Excellence held a workshop on “Veterans Reintegration from Combat to the Classroom.” It was packed full of highly valuable information that each faculty and staff should be aware of in supporting our veteran students on campus.

For those who are not familiar with the Inclusive Excellence program, it is UW System initiative to create engagement at all levels and to develop a culture and learning environment accessible and sensitive to all. The core of its mission being to:  ” … fostering greater diversity, equity, inclusion, and accountability at every level of university life.

The UWGB Inclusive Excellence initiative offers topic specific workshops throughout the academic year to enhance awareness and responsiveness to particular issues and student populations. Additionally, they also offer a three tiered Inclusivity & Equity Certificate Program designed to create leaders throughout the University body in diversity and inclusivity issues.

This particular event focused on increasing awareness of veteran student needs and provided a platform of suggestions and resources for approaching these issues. The presentation began by introducing our campus student veteran leaders. They shared an overview of the current veteran student.

Key points included:

  • 80% of veteran students are male, over half are non-traditional students with families
  • Faculty & staff awareness of readjustment needs are critical
  • Proactive planning like a veteran friendly syllabus is very helpful to veteran students
  • Not all veterans have been in combat
  • Each veteran’s experience is unique
  • Faculty & staff knowledge of veteran resources (also slide 27 of presentation) can be key to supporting veteran student success
  • Veteran students can be leaders and great assets in the classroom

One way that these needs are being addressed successfully on campus is through the Vets 4 Vets student organization. This student org reaches out to new veteran students, provides 1:1 peer mentoring, and promotes veteran friendly activities on campus.

One of their most cherished accomplishments are the relationships they have developed and the new At Ease Veteran & Service Member Student Lounge in MAC 124 (see blog photo above).

“Before UWGB had the lounge I would walk the halls between classes. I didn’t really know anyone. Now that we have the lounge I have a place to go and relax and hang out with other veterans on campus. The friendships that are formed there will stay with me after I graduate.”

Terry Spranger, President Vets4Vets

Overall this workshop was a huge arsenal of resources – so for those of you who couldn’t make it check out the links and reach out if you have further questions. Elaina Koltz is our go-to for veteran related issues on campus.

As the spouse of a combat disabled Army veteran the efforts of the Inclusive Excellence program are encouraging and appreciated. Look for my upcoming blog on my personal experience at UWGB as a student and spouse of a veteran.

Mike CrumAshley Damp, MSW
CATL Program Assistant
UWGB Alumna ’09

QM Process

Hook, Line & Sinker at Quality Matters

“Charting the Course”, “Navigating the Currents of Change”, “Set Sail on a Course Tour”, “A Voyage through QM”.

The harbor-based puns (and subsequent groaning) came hard and fast at the 6th Annual Quality Matters Conference held in Baltimore, which I was lucky enough to attend and present at in September. The conference attracts faculty, designers and administrators from across the county to learn more about Quality Matters and it is a great opportunity for CATL to learn more about the process, share our progress and network with institutions with similar goals. Continue reading

Books on a shelf

You Don’t Know How To Read

“You don’t know how to read,” I’ve fantasized about saying to my students. Then, I realize that they would quite rightly be offended. Of course my students are literate: some of them are even very skilled readers. However, many of them lose this skill when reading theoretical or philosophical arguments. Beyond tried and true methods of insuring that reading “compliance” occurs (quizzes, online quizzes, literature circles,discussion…), I wanted to know how to help my students learn to read like a political theorist. Continue reading

Woman holding a red colored heart that is torn down the middle

Breaking Up Is Hard To Do

Before I became a professor, I utilized PowerPoint a great deal in my professional life. In fact, I prided myself in my ability to use the software and create dynamic presentations that interested whatever audience to whom I was speaking. In fact, when I first became a professor at UWGB, I felt as though my ability to use PowerPoint would be a strength to my teaching career. Boy, was I wrong! Continue reading

Vintage picture of female school teachers sitting in classroom

Myth of the Gender Neutral Classroom

Many of my female faculty colleagues probably experienced being addressed as Mrs. or Ms. at least once every semester and not just by incoming freshmen. Or they read comments about shoes in their end-of-semester evaluations. But are those isolated incidents or does gender matter in how students perceive the knowledge and expertise of an instructor? Do they see differences in pedagogies? Types of course work that male and female faculty assign? Do students find female instructors more relatable? Do they themselves behave differently in the classrooms of male and female instructors? Last academic year, I finally got a chance to collect data on several of these research questions as part of our Teaching Scholars Program. Continue reading

community

Innovative Strategies For General Education

I was given the opportunity to attend and participate in the Baccalaureate Program Directors (BPD) Conference in Louisville, KY in March 2014 under the auspices of a teaching enhancement grant.  My goal was to learn innovative strategies that could be implemented in the general education course I teach (American Social Welfare, soon to be called Foundation of Social Policy) both in the face-to-face offering and in the development of an on-line version of the course to be taught in summer.  Continue reading