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Alumni Stories

Brittany Conery

Previous Name: Brittany Henrich
Graduation Year: December 2015

I am so happy with my decision to receive my teaching degree from UW-Green Bay. The faculty was wonderful to work with. I graduated feeling very prepared to join the education field. I currently teach early kindergarten at my husband's hometown school in Norway, Michigan. Thank you, UWGB, for the incredible education experience.

Laura and Drew Schreurs

Former name: Laura Conard
Year(s) Graduated: 2012 and 2013

Drew & I are grateful for the practice we got in the classroom early on in the Education program at UWGB. We felt very prepared to work with students, manage a classroom and design meaningful lessons. We both very much appreciate learning to "begin with the end in mind"; a lesson plan design method that has been very helpful to our creating intentional lessons!

Drew is a Spanish teacher in Port Washington and I have been an elementary teacher the past few years but am currently enjoying the stay at home mom life & being a teacher in the every day aspects of life!

We love that we met at UWGB and are both teachers! We have a very family friendly schedule and are looking forward to summers off together!

Thank you, UWGB for the rich learning, useful practice and years of sweet memories!

Matt Dommer

I am just so thankful for my years at UWGB working with the outstanding Faculty! They prepared me to be a sucessful teacher, and I am so grateful for them. I made it through my first year!! Go Phoenix!

Matt Dommer

Vanessa Moran

I wanted to take a moment to express a heartfelt thank you to the entire UWGB Education Department for putting me on the path that led to me becoming one of the 2012 Golden Apple Recipients, while still in the initial educator phase of my license. From the honor of being nominated, to the thrill of learning that I was named a Teacher of Distinction, to the complete and utter shock of winning the Golden Apple, every step along this journey can be traced back to my time at UWGB. The high-quality classroom instruction coupled with the invaluable experiences in the field provided by your department during the course of the program helped to mold me into the educator I am today. As encouraged by Linda Tabers-Kwak during my very first education course, I am, for the first time, taking on a student teacher in the fall. This is a tremendous honor and I am already preparing for her first day in the classroom. To know that I am not only touching the lives of my students, but also her future students, is something I do not take lightly. In fact, as much as I enjoy teaching elementary school, I would like nothing more than to one day join the ranks of professor at my alma mater…one day. Thank you again for providing me with a superior education! I feel so blessed to have been mentored by such an outstanding group of dedicated, knowledgeable professors and look forward to reconnecting with the university this fall with the addition of my student teacher. Vanessa Moran 2007 Summa Cum Laude UWGB Graduate 2012 Golden Apple Recipient 3rd Grade Teacher Meadowbrook Elementary School Howard-Suamico School District (920) 662-5090

Vanessa Moran

Becky Chaltry

I applied to the Applied Leadership and Learning Graduate program in the Summer of 2008 when I was frantically trying to get one of emergency teaching certifications into a professional one. I called UWGB in a panic hoping that I would find some answers as to how I was supposed to go about this license renewal. Tim Kaufman was very gracious and suggested that rather than take a few credits here and there, I should enroll in a Master’s program that would not only get me my Master’s Degree, but also take care of my license issue. I enrolled on the spot. I used my 9 elective credits in the program and applied them toward the additional concentration that I was seeking. In addition to those credits, I took 21 credits that the program required. These credits came from 4 core classes and 6 thesis credits. The beautiful thing about UWGB’s Master’s program is that you can choose to do a formal thesis paper or a thesis project. I chose a project and was able to start an amazing running club for the elementary students in my school district! This Master’s program was wonderfully flexible and the staff was amazing to work with. Helen Schaal was enthusiastic and entertaining always. Tim was very informative and helpful through all of coursework as well. I would definitely recommend this program to all those interested!

Alex Bakker & Rachel Harmon-Bakker

My wife Rachel and I are first year teachers at Colegio Americano de Torreon in Torreon, Coahuila Mexico. I am teaching 4th grade in the elementary school and she is teaching 7th grade pre-algebra in the high school, all on the same campus. We obtained these jobs last February at the University of Northern Iowa (UNI) Overseas Placement Fair. If anyone is interested in international teaching, the fair is an excellent opportunity to start their career in education. We had 6 interviews from places all around the world, received 2 offers, and ended up having jobs all in one weekend, even before finishing student teaching. In all, it has been a great experience with new adventures at every turn. We feel like we owe it to the great preparation that we received from the UWGB Education Program.

Cara Lucky

The education that I received at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay really put me ahead of the game when it came to feeling prepared to teach on my own. The classes not only taught me the basis behind the philosophy of our educational system, but they also gave me user-friendly techniques that could be implemented immediately. The professors were incredibly supportive and their desire for your success was apparent. I believe that my education from UWGB has helped me to become a successful ELL teacher who loves to go to work every day!

Kraig Western

Year(s) Graduated: 2004 BA 2009 MS
The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay has been one of the amazing stepping stones in my life. As a young child, my family would always travel to Green Bay to catch Green Bay Packers Training Camp. It was definitely something we looked forward to every year because our family bleeds Green and Gold (Like Professor Kaufman!). As I grew older and was looking to make a college choice, I knew that Green Bay was a place I would love to be. I registered and was accepted early in my senior year of high school. The next four years at UWGB were full of great people and wonderful experiences. A special thanks to Dennis Nellis (Central Receiving Coordinator), Coach Mike Kline (Life Coach/CC coach), and Professor Kaufman (Master of Education) for creating a positive working, athletic, and educational experience at UW-Green Bay. I enjoyed the support and experience so much that I returned to receive my Masters Degree a few years after receiving my Bachelor’s degree. Within the Masters program, I was able to create an educational guide for the Green Bay Packers Hall of Fame. Opportunity is the best thing you can ask of any academic institution. UWGB offered me that opportunity and I am eternally grateful.

Melissa Wagnitz

Year(s) Graduated: 2007 BS; 2011 MS

I thought I could get everything finished before Angelina arrived, but then she decided to come 5 weeks early. I had to finish analyzing and typing my research while trying to take care of a premature newborn on 2 hours of consecutive sleep. After all that hard work, she chews on my diploma cover. That diploma represents hours of meticulous work, research, exploration, and collaboration…and makes a great teether.

Stephanie Stevens

Former name: Stephanie Bunzel
Year(s) Graduated: 2006, 2011

I had my first born son when I was a junior in college. It was a big life change, and I didn’t know if I would finish school or not after my son was born. Thankfully, I met Dr. Lisa Poupart. Not only did Lisa get me acclimated to UWGB, she encouraged me to keep with it, and she helped spark a fire inside me that made me want to work hard to succeed—not just for me, but for my family. I graduated from UWGB with high honors with a degree in Humanities and an emphasis in First Nation Studies in 2006. I reached a goal that I wasn’t sure if I ever would reach. I was the first in my family to graduate with a Bachelor’s degree. I was a wife, a mother, and a full-time employee, but I still had a fire burning, that desire to continue learning. I decided I wanted to continue with my education at UWGB, and I knew that it would help provide me with additional skills that would help me in all areas of life. After an insightful meeting with Tim Kaufman, I enrolled in the Masters of Education program: Applied leadership for Teaching and Learning. It wasn’t always easy, but with family support, I found a way to balance everything in my life. The weekend class schedule worked well for me. Currently, I am employed under the Oneida Nation Early Head Start Program. I am a Home Visitor/Parent Educator. I teach parents that they are their child’s first and most influential teacher. I help provide parents with the confidence and materials they need to ensure that their children are going to excel in all areas of development. I am able to reciprocate what Lisa has done for me, and that is very rewarding. I now encourage young mothers to continue their education and pursue their goals. I am very thankful for the skills and the knowledge that I have gained at UWGB. The education program is wonderful, and there are excellent staff members there who provide the framework for you to build upon your own desires, so you too can rise like the phoenix as you pursue your own dreams!

Nick Rusboldt

Year(s) Graduated: 2009

After receiving a Bachelor’s Degree in 2004, I went back to college to obtain my teaching license in 2007. I chose UWGB based on reputation and recommendations from friends and teachers I knew. As a 27 year old with a family, I needed a university that would be flexible and professors that would do their best to accommodate my situation. All of the professors in the education department did what they could to accommodate me as much as possible. Besides for providing me with excellent classes at the university that helped make me the teacher I am today, the education program also provided me with a wealth of training and experience in school classrooms. In 2009, I was hired as a special education teacher in the Kewaunee School District. My license was not in special education. I was hired under an emergency license based on the district’s confidence in my knowledge in areas such as differentiation, technology, and current literacy and math instruction. I was hired based on the idea that I could teach, and I owe much of my success to the wonderful experiences in the education program at UWGB.

Sara Rohde

Former name: Boyer
Year(s) Graduated: 1999-2004

I was at UW-Green Bay from 1999-2004 and can’t even describe how wonderful my experience was with the Education program when I attended there. The professors, courses, and most importantly, the relationship I built with everyone was very important to my education and something that still exists today. I am currently a 4th grade bilingual teacher in the Green Bay Public Schools and am the Varsity Girls Basketball coach at Notre Dame Academy.