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Graduate Studies



Graduate Student GO PHOENIX Challenge!

The Office of Graduate Studies seeks to highlight exciting graduate student research, internships, travel course experiences, and any other signature activities undertaken during a student’s UWGB graduate education. To capture these stories, we have initiated a new videography competition, called the “Graduate Student Go Phoenix Challenge!” No need to be a professional photographer, just use your phone or camera, or contact the Graduate Studies Office ( to borrow one of our three small, mountable video cameras, then unleash your creative inner-self!

Please see our call for submissions for complete instructions.

Graduate Student Scholarship & Research

The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay has some pretty incredible graduate students! Although it can't all be captured, here we highlight a selection of the exciting research and activities, and bring attention to new scholarship opportunities. Go Phoenix!

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Jesse Weinzinger

July 2016

Jesse Weinzinger

Jesse Weinzinger is an Environmental Science & Policy graduate student. He researched sampling strategies for studying freshwater mussels in streams of Northeast Wisconsin for his thesis. Jesse believes that, "citizen monitoring is essential to the success of any statewide monitoring initiative.

Jesse's ideas recently came to fruition. He is currently working with the DNR in Madison as a Citizen-based Mussel Monitoring Coordinator. Congratulations, Jesse, from your Phoenix family!

Graduate Student Research Grant Recipients

June 2016

The Office of Graduate studies is proud to announce the second set of recipients of the Graduate Student Research Grant for the 2015-2016 academic year. The purpose of the grant is to support activities contributing to the enhancement and completion of graduate research and theses. Below is a brief description of the three recipients' research projects:

  • Amber Konrad

    Using Stable Isotopes of Well Water to Assess Geographic Influence in a Karst Aquifer, Kewaunee County, Wisconsin
    Ground water contamination has been a long-standing problem in rural northeastern Wisconsin, especially in areas with thin soils over karsted Silurian dolostone bedrock. Using stable isotopes, Amber intends to assess contamination vulnerability of local wells.
  • Tyler Hischke

    Stratigraphy & Petrography of the Cambrian Rocks in Northeast Wisconsin
    Cambrian rock units represent a large portion of the deep aquifer system in northeast Wisconsin, but they have yet to be studied in detail. The layering of these units, as well as their varied chemical compositions and textures, have a significant impact on water quality and quantity in the Northeast Groundwater Management Area. Tyler seeks to create a detailed and precise model of these rock units - which would allow for a better understanding of our deep aquifer systems.
  • Katie McDonald

    Macrofungi Diversity Study of University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Natural Areas: A preliminary investigation & record into the fungal community of Northeast Wisconsin
    Fungi are an extraordinarily diverse group of organisms with nearly 100,000 species described and a total global diversity of 1.5-5 million species. Perhaps because of this, coupled with limited resources for research, little is known about their diversity, processes, and temporal distribution across the world, especially in the Midwestern United States. Katie aims to contribute to the body of knowledge on fungi and to set the stage for future research.

Marc Minani

May 14th, 2016

Marc Minani Commencement Speaker

Opportunity can catch you by surprise, showing up in the most unlikely places. So it’s smart to leave no stone unturned. That was just one piece of advice shared by UW-Green Bay Student Commencement Speaker Mark Minani at the Spring 2016 Ceremony at the Kress Events Center May 14.

The graduate student and Graduating Class Speaker has been turning over stones since arriving on campus and Green Bay in the fall of 2014. “The sheer number of connections and contributions he’s made on and off campus are inspiring,” noted Prof. Michael Zorn, Chair of the Environmental Science and Policy Graduate Program, in nominating Minani as a Commencement Speaker.

Minani received his Bachelor’s Degree in Agricultural Economics at the National University of Rwanda in 2013. He received a master’s degree in Environmental Science and Policy and a Certificate in Environmental Sustainability at today’s commencement ceremony. He was chosen to speak on behalf of his graduating class by a committee of UW-Green Bay faculty members and administrators. His future career interests are to serve his country and the whole world as an environmental advocate in finding solutions to cross cutting issues as water, energy and food.

Read more about Marc's speech and his contributions to UW-Green Bay in Inside News.

Mitchell Lenz & Sahara Tanner

March 21st, 2016

Students Studying Pike

A group of UW-Green Bay environmental science students, including seniors Mitchell Lenz & Sahara Tanner, were recently featured - along with their supervising professor Patrick Forsythe - in a piece on Northern Pike spawning. "We've had a really early Spring.,The fish of course followed suit with that. They're also very early," said Patrick Forsythe, UW-Green Bay Biology Associate Professor.

Mitchell Lenz, UWGB senior, summed up their research, "We're catching pike, tagging them, trying to get eggs and milt to fertilize, and see how their egg recruitment is out of this wetland here." Their research could have implications for future wetland restoration projects. Saraha Tanner describes the importance of their research, "there's not a lot of data on northern pike, and the importance of it. So we're kind of gathering and creating a baseline for that."

Northern Pike

See the full feature on Fox 11 News. Congrats to all involved in the project & keep up the great work!

Brianna Kupsky

February 25th, 2016

Wetlands Conference

Brianna Kupsky, Environmental Science & Policy masters student, presented at the Wisconsin Wetlands Association's 21st Annual Conference. Her poster title, Identifying establishment and restoration potential of Vallisneria americana in the Lower Bay of Green Bay, WI won Best Student Poster Presentation Award. Bri's project, "evaluated the potential for large-scale restoration of a historically abundant aquatic plant, Vallisneria americana (wild celery), in the Lower Green Bay by altering the restoration size and the effect of inter-specific facilitation along a water depth gradient." Great work Bri!

Graduate Student Research Grant Recipients

February 2016

As part of a bigger push to promote research at our University, the Office of Graduate studies is proud to award the first recipients of its new Graduate Student Research Grants. The purpose of the grant is to support activities contributing to the enhancement and completion of graduate research and theses. Each student had the opportunity to be awarded up to $1,000. This year five graduate student's were awarded:

  • Kaitlin Gilles

    Survey of Motivation and Barriers for Environmental Efforts in Northeast Wisconsin
    Kaitlin seeks to study the environmental sustainability practices of small businesses within Northeast Wisconsin with the hopes of providing more tailored guidance to other business in the area.
  • Holly Harpster

    Characterizing Factors that Influence Water Quality and Plant Communities of Constructed Wetlands in Northeastern Wisconsin
    Holly is currently examining the water quality function of restored wetlands in Northeast Wisconsin. Holly describes how, “Phosphorus runoff from agricultural fields is a major concern in northeastern Wisconsin because it contributes to the eutrophication of Lake Michigan. I examined 13 wetlands restored between 1989 and 1999, collecting water samples, wetland sediment cores, and conducting an emergent plant survey.” She will use her grant to fund the continued evaluation of theses samples.
  • Marc Minani

    Environmental and Economic Implications of Soil Conservation Practices in Northeast Wisconsin
    Agricultural runoff has had a negative impact on the Lower Fox River watershed and collaborative efforts have been made to implement conservation practices to decrease phosphorus runoff and improve water quality. Marc seeks to demonstrate the short term and long term benefits of soil conservation practices by studying the soil and productivity of local farms – as well as the environmental implications of such practices.
  • Samantha Nellis

    Investigation of the Distribution and Composition of Nectar-dwelling Yeast and Bacteria Communities in Five Flowering Plants in Northeastern Wisconsin
    While it has been established that nectar-dwelling yeast and bacteria are pervasive in many plant species, little research has been done on the role of these microorganisms. Samantha seeks to contribute new knowledge about the role of microorganisms in the nectar of five flower species in Northeast Wisconsin.
  • Brian Yagle

    Isotopic Analyses of Magmas in Collision in a Natural Laboratory for Magma Mixing and Assimilation: Central Buss Pass, McMurdo Dry Valleys, Antarctica
    Brian is working on better understanding the processes of magma mixing using a natural laboratory field site found in the Dry Valleys of Antarctica. 180 million years ago vast intrusions of hot magma partially melted the crust, forcing the interaction of two distinct magmas. Through studying the distribution of minerals, chemistry, and textures throughout this magma mixing zone, Brian is putting together a detailed picture of how magma mixing occurs.

Alexandria Skoch

December 2015

Alexandria Skoch

Skoch graduated this last December with a master’s degree in Sustainability Management from UW-Green Bay. Her capstone project is “Greening the Browns: Understanding and Analyzing the Environmental Implications of a National Football League Team.” “My final project focused on the Cleveland Browns’ environmental implications, and a lot of research, observation, and time went in to the final paper,” she said. “I was fortunate enough to experience home games at FirstEnergy Stadium from a behind-the-scenes perspective. This opened my eyes to numerous shortcomings of National Football League teams and the Cleveland Browns. Perhaps most importantly, this project has shown me that sustainability, when viewed through a business lens, is handled through more of a “greenwashing” approach rather than a truly impactful approach. Honestly, there is a lot left to be done in sports sustainability, and although the Green Sports Alliance exists and has numerous resources to help NFL teams become more sustainable, little action has been taken by a majority of teams…”

Skoch’s final recommendations for the Browns focused on fully integrating sustainability into each department, branch, division and location within the organization and hiring an individual who would focus on full integration. “Unfortunately, for now, like most NFL teams, they will continue to grab the ‘low hanging’ fruit,” she says. “However, I believe that eventually all national sports teams and leagues will be required to meet set environmental impact reduction goals in the very near future.” Skoch is the the sixth UW-Green Bay graduate out of about 50 enrollees in the relatively new Sustainability Management program.