The Environmental Research and Innovation Center at UW Oshkosh will soon begin testing residence hall wastewater for COVID-19. It’s a strategy rising in popularity to help prevent outbreaks before they happen.
While the fall semester is well underway, the official fall season begins today. While fans of warm weather might not be too pleased to have to start layering up, most likely would agree the stretch of time beginning in late September and running into October and November offers the most eye-candy. Here’s a preview of fall colors soon to be splashing across the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh campuses.
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It’s a sight many months of hard work in the marking: Titans out and about on the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh campus for the fall semester. The new term got underway Sept. 9 and students, while staying mindful of social distancing, masks and other safety measures, are again making steps toward their academic goals.
The Oshkosh campus of the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh is again a bustling place, with the start of the revamped move-in process kicking off Wednesday. With a renewed focus on safety during the coronavirus pandemic, the annual rite of passage for college students is spread out over five days instead of the traditional weekend of action. It’s one of countless measures taken to ensure the fall 2020 semester is a success as part of the Titans Return plan.
Click the image below to view photos from the opening day of masked-up students moving into residence halls ahead of the Sept. 9 start of classes.
A large colorful mural—with a unifying theme celebrating differences―is on view for all to see this fall on the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh campus.
Three years in the making, the UW Oshkosh Multicultural Student Task Force this week unveiled the new artwork, made up of a dozen 4-by-8-foot sheets in all, affixed to the side of Albee Hall facing Polk Library.
“This project took so long to do and it’s finally here,” said Pa Houa Xiong, a task force member who graduated with a degree in biology in spring 2020. “I’m so excited and hope that other students are excited as well.”
Xiong said the mural is important to her because it is intended to uplift and recognize the communities on campus as well as symbolize the differences amongst each other and “create unity.”
Nicholas Metoxen, task force member and former president of the UWO Intertribal Student Organization, graduated in December 2019 and works as a teacher for Oneida High School. He said he’s extremely happy other students stepped up after original task force members graduated to see the project through.
“I’m super excited to see what kind of impact it has on campus,” he said.
Metoxen believes as students walk to class, the mural will be a reminder of varying cultures. And prospective multi-cultural students who are thinking about attending UWO will see a mural both put up by students and for students.
Eau Claire artist Jason Anhorn said he was inspired to create a very colorful and visually busy mural that includes musical aspects and fun designs.
“I’m hoping the mural includes a little cultural flavor from all around the world and sings its own song to each viewer,” he said. “With music, every culture has its own music, but every culture is singing the same song. I titled the mural, Same Song.”
Chancellor Andrew Leavitt said the mural represents that all are supported and valued—”that is what we are trying to achieve.”
UW System Regent Corey Saffold, on hand for the unveiling, said the UWO students didn’t take “no” for an answer regarding the mural.
“Build this mural in every aspect of your life: for justice, for equity, diversity and for inclusion,” he said.
Mai Khou Xiong, acting director of Student Achievement Services in the division of Academic Support of Inclusive Excellence, is adviser of the Multicultural Student Task Force and the student-led initiative to get a mural placed in a prominent part of campus.
She said several years ago leaders from various multicultural student organizations came together to talk about diversity, inclusion and their experiences on campus. From these dialogues, students identified that there needed to be greater representation of cultural diversity both in and outside of the classroom. One of the critical areas of need was having multicultural artwork on campus. As a result, the student task force was formed with a goal of installing a mural on campus. Students led all aspects of the project, from securing funding, finding a location and selecting the artwork.
The mural is sponsored by the Asian Student Association; Black Student Union; Gentlemen of Excellence (formerly Men of Distinction); Hmong Student Union; Intertribal Student Council; Multicultural Education Coalition; Sisterhood; Student Organization of Latinos; and Women’s Advocacy Council; along with the support of University leadership and various offices across campus.
Dedicated and hard-working students “had a vision three years ago and brought that vision to life,” Xiong said, calling the artwork “an important piece and a meaningful piece.”
The unique artwork is the creative work of Anhorn, owner of Anhorn Entertainment in western Wisconsin. Anhorn is successful as a caricature artist and creates murals and ice sculptures. This latest work is among the larger ones he’s done over the years.
In July 2001, he and a fellow artist were hired to paint the side of an entire building in Brooklyn two months before 9/11. The 150-by-10-foot mural of a space scene was untouched for four years before it was vandalized.
Another mammoth piece was a 2,500-foot children’s play area mural in July 2013 he was commissioned to paint at the Oakwood Mall in Eau Claire.
For the UWO mural, Anhorn painted the 12 plywood panels with a double coat of primer and then a latex coat of red to the mural side. He then drew his design with latex paint and completed the entire mural freehand with spray paint. He finalized the panels with a clear coat before delivering them to the University. He estimates each panel weighs 75 pounds, noting they were “heavy to move during the entire process but an incredibly fun way to exercise.”
What will students think when they pass by Albee Hall?
“I’m guessing students will like having something colorful and whimsical to look at as they pass along that part of campus,” he said. “I left the design open for interpretation and I hope the mural sparks the students’ imagination.”
The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh is ready to welcome students back to its campuses. Students will notice several changes that have been made to enhance the safety of our community amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
Facilities crews have been hard at work installing plexiglass barriers, removing or covering furniture to ensure proper distancing, adding foot handles to doors, applying stickers to floors, and placing hand sanitizing stations throughout the university.
Signage has gone up outlining safety protocols. Students are asked to please adhere to them at all times. Face masks must be worn when inside and are encouraged outside when proper physical distancing can’t be maintained.
Students, faculty and staff have all been confronted with unprecedented challenges. With mutual dedication and respect, we can navigate these uncertain times together while upholding our commitment to higher education. To that end, every student, faculty and staff member is asked to make the Titan Safety Promise and perform a daily self-assessment before coming to campus. This information and much more can be found on the Titans Return website. The health assessment may also be accessed on our UWO Mobile app.
Additionally, everyone will receive a Titans Return bag that will include two UWO face masks, hand sanitizer, and health and safety information.
Whether you’re on the Fond du Lac, Fox Cities or Oshkosh campus, we ask that everyone do their part to ensure a safe and productive return to school this semester. So please wash your hands, wear your mask, keep your distance, and hail Titans.
When we asked our donor community to help support our students as they navigated the financial crisis presented by COVID-19, we were blown away by the response.
Our students needed help, and the Titan community rose to the occasion.
Because of our donors, the Titans Rise campaign raised $84,000 and has helped more than 250 students so far. From the bottom of our hearts, we want to say thank you.
If the powerful words of these students inspire you to make a gift to the Titans Rise campaign, please know that your contribution is needed and appreciated. Applications continue to arrive daily and nearly 500 students remain hopeful that they, too, will receive a grant.
The University of Wisconsin Oshkosh History Club will host an online discussion about the legacy of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and the future of the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday, Sept. 29 at 4:30 p.m.
The event is in partnership with the Women’s Center, Women and Gender Studies Program, Political Science Student Association, American Democracy Project and the history department.
The discussion led by UWO historian Paisley Harris will be available at bit.ly/330RGYr.
“This event will help us explore the significance of Justice Ginsberg’s work and the role of the Supreme Court in our Constitutional system by placing them in historical perspective and inviting discussion,” said Harris, who teaches history and gender and women’s studies on UWO’s Fond du Lac campus.
Students on the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh, Oshkosh campus in need of food assistance are welcome to use the food pantry once per week. The only requirement is that students bring their TitanCard.
Open times for the semester are Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The Cabinet is located in the lower level of Reeve Memorial Union next to Titan Underground.
The Cabinet will now have restricted in-person access. Only one student user will be allowed to use the pantry at a time. As with the rest of campus, users will need to wear face coverings and comply with directions from staff and student volunteers.
Students also can fill out an online form and pick up their pre-packaged pantry order from the Student Involvement Desk (near the Algoma Boulevard entrance).
For more information, please contact student Food Pantry Director, Kaitlyn Henry at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Registration is now open for national public summit on preventing sexual harassment in higher education
Registration is now open for the second annual national Public Summit of the Action Collaborative on Preventing Sexual Harassment in Higher Education hosted by the University of Wisconsin System. The summit, scheduled for Oct. 19-20, was originally to be held at UW-Milwaukee but will be taking place virtually this year due to COVID-19.
“The UW System is proud to be at the forefront of addressing this important issue in our society and particularly in higher education,” UW System President Tommy Thompson said. “In order for our students to receive the best possible education, they must feel comfortable and safe in their campus communities.”
The public summit is an open forum for higher education leaders, faculty, staff, and students to identify, discuss and elevate innovative and effective approaches for addressing and preventing sexual harassment in the university setting.
The event will bring together a diverse group of stakeholders and will feature a combination of panel discussions, expert presentations and a poster session through which attendees can share research and novel ideas and practices currently being explored or implemented.
The Action Collaborative includes the UW System, as well as more than 60 organizations, including large public and private institutions, smaller technical or liberal arts institutions, community colleges, minority-serving institutions, and research and training sites. The UW System was the first state public higher education system to join the Action Collaborative as one of its 28 founding members.
The four goals of the Action Collaborative are to:
- Raise awareness about sexual harassment and how it occurs, the consequences of sexual harassment, and the organizational characteristics and recommended approaches that can prevent it.
- Share and elevate evidence-based institutional policies and strategies to reduce and prevent sexual harassment.
- Contribute to setting the research agenda and gather and apply research results across institutions.
- Develop a standard for measuring progress toward reducing and preventing sexual harassment in higher education.
To register to attend the summit and view the agenda, visit the event webpage.
In 2014, then–UW System President Ray Cross called for the creation of the UW System Task Force on Sexual Violence and Harassment, a two-year investigation of current and best practices for preventing sexual violence and harassment. In 2016, the UW System put forth a comprehensive new Board of Regents’ sexual assault and harassment policy, codifying the UW System’s commitment to addressing the issue and mandating sexual violence and harassment training for all UW System employees and students.
In 2018, the UW System instituted groundbreaking new policies on reference checks and the sharing of personnel files that aim to prevent the “pass the harasser” practice. The new policies, unanimously approved by the Board of Regents, require all UW System universities to document in personnel files instances of sexual violence or sexual harassment perpetrated by employees and to share that information with other employers. The policy also requires that final employment candidates be asked whether they have been found to have committed harassment.
Uplifting messages are brightening the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh campuses in what has overall been a gloomy 2020.
Staff from University Marketing and Communications ordered and placed a number of yard signs in student-facing locations at Oshkosh, Fond du Lac and Fox Cities.
You might see the following messages:
“Not all heroes wear capes. Some wear masks. Be a HERO.”
“Spread kindness. Not germs.”
“Inspire Hope. Ignite Imagination. Love Learning.”
“It’s okay to not be okay.”
The UWO Counseling Center this week put out a list of tips to “positively cope in distressing times” during the COVID-19 pandemic.
One of the tips tells us to focus on the strength that has been a guiding positive force and keep that at the front of mind as you continue to walk through your day.
Hopefully the simple, inspiring messages will provide a little of that strength.
Following a thorough evaluation of all COVID-19 risks and safety protocols, and numerous meetings involving various Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference governance groups, the WIAC Council of Chancellors voted unanimously to suspend all winter sports competition through Dec. 31, 2020.
The suspension includes the conference sports of men’s and women’s basketball, women’s gymnastics, men’s and women’s ice hockey, men’s and women’s indoor track & field, men’s and women’s swimming & diving, and wrestling.
Further, the WIAC will continue to gather information and monitor developments in order to best determine a competitive structure during the spring semester. At the same time, the WIAC is committed to providing an engaging and meaningful experience for student-athletes.
Spectrum News 1, Sept. 27
FOX11/WLUK, Sept. 26
WHBY, Sept. 25
Wisconsin State Journal, Sept. 27.
madison365.com, Sept. 24