Despite another snowy April, this year a large cohort of faculty and staff from UW-Green Bay’s four campuses descended on Madison for the UW System’s Office for Professional and Instructional Development’s annual conference. This year theme explored “The Joys of Teaching and Learning: Intersecting Pedagogies and Identities.” In a refreshing break from the traditional, lecture-style keynote, this year’s two speakers gave their address as an intergenerational conversation. Dr. Rosalyn LaPier and Abaki Beck shared their knowledge and research on indigenous ways of knowing, particularly within their respective fields of ethnobotany, public health and food sovereignty. Among the many topics they explored, Dr. LaPier discussed changes to indigenous rights movements over last two decades. Her studies trace the influence of rematriation, particularly among women who (look at notes). Their conversation grappled with the rejection or subordination of indigenous approaches to science, health, and food sovereignty. The keynote necessarily provoked many in the audience to contemplate what epistemologies they privilege in classrooms and curricula, which resulted in a reflective discussion with the two speakers after lunch. Abaki Beck, who is currently pursuing a Master’s in Public Health at Washington University, shared her research on Blackfeet food sovereignty and encouraged all to attend the Oneida Nation’s Food Sovereignty Summit on September 23-26, 2019.
UW-Green Bay faculty and staff showcased their talents at the faculty development institute on January 19th. Workshops ranged from how to navigate the changing landscape of academic freedom to how to write grants to how to develop cultural competency in the classroom. While the workshops varied greatly in their subject matter, there were two elements common to all presentations. The first is that they all gave participants ideas and practices to use in their work. The second is that UW-Green Bay has a remarkable collection of workers who are a truly valuable resource for each other. From the perspective of the Center, the key takeaway from the day was that we felt fortunate to have provided a platform where over ninety UWGB community members – plus colleagues from elsewhere – could share in each other’s strengths. Be on the lookout for reading groups and workshops this Spring that seek to continue the Center’s mission to bring UWGB together to enhance teaching and learning.