All-University Address

UWL Chancellor Joe Gow gave his All-University Address Wednesday, Jan. 22, in The Bluffs, Student Union.

UWL looks ahead to projects and strategic planning, plans for demographic shifts

While the decades ahead are predicted to be a challenge for college and university enrollments nationwide due, in part, to a decline in the number of 18-year-olds, UWL is working to meet this challenge by better understanding the programs and services these incoming students will need, UWL Chancellor Joe Gow said Wednesday.

During his All-University Address, Gow shared UWL’s creation of a long-term enrollment task force that will look closely at these issues. The work is one of many initiatives Gow mentioned during the address that align with the university’s strategic plan.

Gow also shared that UWL has a lot to celebrate, including meeting its accreditation criteria, continuing to attract outstanding students in record numbers, improving campus facilities and more.

Recent Awards

Nese Nasif, UW-La Crosse assistant professor of marketing, received an inaugural Faculty Research Award for Extraordinary Service award during the Chancellor’s All-University Address.
  • Renee Redman, UWL senior lecturer in biology, was nominated for the Regents Teaching Excellence Award. One outstanding faculty member from UWL is nominated for the award that recognizes an outstanding career achievement in teaching.
  • Several people in UWL’s Office of Residence Life received awards from the Upper Midwest Region of ACUHO (Association of College and University Housing Officers).
    • Kyleah Bell for Graduate Student Social Justice Action Award
    • Hannah Amann for Top Five Program Presentation, and New Presenter Award
    • Michelle Edge for Support Staff Recognition Award

Achievements

  • The Higher Learning Commission reaffirmed that UWL meets the criteria for accreditation during a standard mid-cycle review, with no additional monitoring.
  • UWL’s Share the La Crosse Experience Scholarship Campaign wrapped up in December with a total of more than $18 million raised to support UWL student scholarships. The campaign, which started in 2013, aimed to raise more than $15 million to support students by 2019.
  • In March 2019, UWL’s School of Education was the first institution in Wisconsin to be approved by the Department of Public Instruction as an Educator Preparation Program under the new licensure law (PI 34). UWL SOE underwent its first onsite annual review under the new procedure in November and was granted one-year initial approval. This is the first year of a five-year annual visit cycle. DPI recognized SOE for innovative programming including Trauma Informed Schools (a partnership between Educational Studies, School Psychology, and Northside Elementary School in La Crosse) and the summer Milwaukee Urban Experience (an intensive Field I Experience with diverse Elementary and Middle School partners in Milwaukee). DPI noted that SOE’s partnerships with K-12 programs are vital to exemplary educator preparation and support for local school districts.

Strategic planning-related initiatives

  • UWL now offers a Diversity & Inclusion Certificate Program, aligning with the Equity and Diversity pillar of the strategic plan. Certificates are organized by roles: instructors, employees, supervisors/department chairs, student advocates (e.g., Student Affairs and D&I professional), and Equity Liaisons.
  • Community engagement at UWL is taking many forms from the opening of a Common Thread, a new campus clothes closet, to a new collaboration with the La Crosse Police Department to secure a grant for community policing.

Future developments

  • Wittich Hall will reopen this summer. The renovated 1919 building will be updated with 2020 technology, and it will become the new home for the College of Business Administration. The CBA is planning a celebration for the grand opening of the building at 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 3, followed by a reception.
  • Construction of a new fieldhouse and soccer support facility is anticipated to begin in fall 2020 with completion in August 2022. The design report for the fieldhouse project will be submitted to the State Building Commission for approval at its February meeting. “I think the fieldhouse will get a lot of use and be important for recruiting students who want to live the ‘mind and body’ values we have at UWL,” said Gow.
  • UWL is working to get Phase II of the Prairie Springs Science Center included in the next state budget.