This is the latest online edition of Learning Connections, a magazine for alumni and friends of the UW–Madison School of Education. The Winter 2020-21 issue centers on the launch of Impact 2030. With an eye to the School’s centennial in 2030, this new initiative is allowing us to bolster opportunities and significantly increase support for our faculty, staff, and students to better serve our communities, the state, and the world. This issue of Learning Connections also highlights high-quality work being done across all 10 of our departments. A pdf of the print edition is available here. Check it out!
Program investing in Wisconsin’s future teachers one highlight of new Impact 2030 initiative.
The past many months have certainly been memorable — but for reasons Dean Diana Hess never anticipated at the start of 2020. Despite the many challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, Impact 2030 has Hess excited for the future and believing in big ideas.
The School of Education is making substantial new efforts to support faculty doing outstanding work by committing significant resources over the next decade to a new faculty fellowship program. These new fellowships provide flexible funding over five years to further a faculty member’s research and scholarship. Meet the School’s first nine faculty fellows, including artist Helen Lee (pictured above).
In late 2018, alumni Tashia and John Morgridge provided a lead gift to the School of Education’s Impact 2030 initiative. Over the next year, a small group of donors joined them in making leadership gifts. Thanks to the generosity of the Impact 2030 Dean’s Leadership Circle, the School was able to launch Impact 2030 in August 2020.
When the fall 2020 semester kicked off at UW–Madison on Sept. 2, everyone realized it would be unlike any that had come before. But our School of Education students remained upbeat — and proved to be just as driven and inspiring as always.
During the course of the academic year, the School of Education shares Q&As completed by its newest faculty members in an effort to introduce them to the campus and School communities. Learn about Baron Kelly, who joined the School as a faculty member with the Department of Theatre and Drama prior to the start of the fall semester.
Courtney Bell stepped into her new role as director of the Wisconsin Center for Education Research (WCER), which is housed in the School of Education, on July 1 of 2020. She joined her new colleagues at UW–Madison remotely, as she and most of WCER’s researchers and staff have been working since mid-March 2020.
Spotlight: Counseling Psychology Training Clinic pivots to offering services remotely during pandemic
The clinic is staffed by graduate students in the Department of Counseling Psychology’s master’s and doctoral programs who are supervised by licensed psychologists.
Alumna Alexa Posny recently created a scholarship for students who are studying to become administrators. Two students each year spend a summer in Washington, D.C., working in policy and networking. “This experience will open doors and their mind,” Posny says. “They will have such a wider understanding. The laws are more flexible than many people think.”
The School of Education is welcoming 16 new faculty members to campus during the 2020-21 academic year, which is one of the largest cohorts to sign on with the School since its founding in 1930.
UW–Madison’s Athletic Training program is transitioning to the master’s degree level due to changing national accreditation standards and an anticipated growth in demand for athletic trainers in the coming years. The new Master of Science in Athletic Training (MSAT) program — which was approved by the UW System’s Board of Regents in April — is now accepting applications and will enroll its first cohort in the summer of 2021.
“Despite the Best Intentions: How Racial Inequality Thrives in Good Schools,” attracted the attention of educators in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, and led to a book study group this past summer. About 270 people from over 30 urban, suburban, and rural school districts in Wisconsin read the book co-authored by UW–Madison's John Diamond.
Sadhana Puntambekar is working with researchers across the nation on establishing one of five artificial intelligence (AI) institutes and education hubs. An initiative of the National Science Foundation, the centers — each being backed with $20 million in support — are the single most significant federal investment in exploring how AI can benefit the nation’s quality of life, economy, and international competitiveness.
The School of Education’s Office of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (OEDI) teamed up with its Office of Professional Learning and Community Education (PLACE) to produce a series of symposia focused on critical issues of racial justice titled, Real Talk for Real Change. It aligns with the vision statement for PLACE, which aims to provide transformational learning experiences.
Check out what School of Education alumni from across the globe have been up to.
When the coronavirus moved nearly all teaching and learning online in the spring of 2020, the Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD) and School of Education utilized existing partnerships to quickly create plans for a virtual Summer Tutoring Collaborative — which was designed to address the potential summer slide of MMSD students who were experiencing significant barriers to successful virtual learning.
Faculty and staff from across the School of Education are routinely quoted or make their voices heard in newspapers, magazines, and online news media outlets. Similarly, these experts are often interviewed and showcased on a range of local, national, and international radio and television news reports.
Serving the School of Education at the nexus of research, mission, and community, the office of Professional Learning and Community Education (PLACE) draws on the best ideas and people across the School to provide transformational learning experiences for artists, educators, leaders, and lifelong learners around the world.
Keep in touch!
If you have questions or comments about Learning Connections, email Todd Finkelmeyer at email@example.com, or call 608-890-1430.
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