Outlook Magazine - Fall 2021


I t is with hope and gratitude that I write the welcome for this edition of the Outlook alumni magazine. After a year and a half of great challenges, we are looking forward to a fall semester that is as much a return to regular university operations as possible. Our ability to navigate the complexities of the last academic year as successfully as we did is due to the hard work and dedication of our faculty, staff, students, partners and friends of the university. We were creative, resourceful, patient and supportive of one another, and we remained focused on our mission and delivered on our promise to students. I am proud to report that we graduated more than 1,600 students during a collection of virtual, hybrid and in-person commencement ceremonies held during the 2020-2021 academic year. I hope you will enjoy the images and inspiring stories from these ceremonies included in the magazine. As graduates and supporters of our special university, you know that at UW- Stout we use the problem-solving and critical thinking skills that we teach our students as part of our own everyday operations. This was apparent in our commitment to designing and launching a new university strategic plan while we were dealing with the many immediate issues associated with COVID-19. FOCUS2030, launched officially in May 2021, is a 10-year strategic plan designed to allow us to position ourselves and lead as Wisconsin’s Polytechnic University in a post-pandemic landscape. We have aligned many of the stories featured in this edition of Outlook with the five goal areas of the plan: 1. Student Success; 2. Employee Success; 3. Institutional Sustainability; 4. Equity, Diversity, and Inclusivity; and 5. Identity. Many of you will likely recall that we remain the only four-year university to have ever received the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (2001), and the robust and inclusive planning process and accountability system associated with this status continues to guide our planning, implementation and assessment processes. The stories featured in the magazine are evidence of our strong institutional foundation that helps position us for success as we work toward achieving the goals of FOCUS2030. I encourage you to take some time to read through the new strategic plan at www.uwstout.edu/focus-2030, follow our progress and continue to offer ideas through your participation on advisory and university committees, via university connections or by emailing ideas to focus2030@uwstout.edu. We are excited to be returning to in-person university events like homecoming, featured in the magazine, and I hope that you will find time to visit Stout during one of these events and/or as your travels bring you to the area. The university community is always delighted to welcome you back to campus, to listen to your memories, to show you how far we have come and to share plans for the future. Thank you for all that you do for UW-Stout. It’s simple: Our students — past and present — are why we are here and able to do what we love as educators and supporters of public, higher education.

Message from the Chancellor KATHERINE FRANK

With gratitude,


U W - S T O U T O U T L O O K

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