JULY 8, 2019
Nelson Institute partner UniverCity Year wins a Community-University Partnership Award
On June 26, 2019, UW–Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank presented the UniverCity Year (UCY) program and its partners, including Green County, with a Community-University Partnership Award for their collaborative efforts to address community challenges while exemplifying the Wisconsin Idea of expanding education and outreach beyond the classroom.
JULY 2, 2019
Register to attend a Tallgrass Prairie & Oak Savanna Fire Science Consortium workshop
A recent Nelson Institute study led by The Nature Conservancy, showed that proper land management practices play a significant role in decreasing carbon emissions. In particular, the retention of grasslands, wetlands, and forests, were shown to help fight climate change. While there are many aspects of land management that can help, controlled burns have been shown to improve the viability of these important natural grasslands and savannas, particularly those that contain native oak trees. As such, the Tallgrass Prairie & Oak Savanna Fire Science Consortium (TPOS) will be hosting workshops throughout the Midwest this summer to educate land managers on the benefits of controlled burns.
JULY 2, 2019
In Memoriam: Maggie Stewart
Margaret Ann (Maggie) Stewart passed away at her parents’ home in South Milwaukee on June 10. Maggie was a 2016 graduate of the Nelson Institute’s Environmental Conservation Master’s Program and a 2014 graduate of the Department of Forest and Wildlife Ecology.
JUNE 25, 2019
Losing ground? When downgrading protected areas helps conservation, and when it doesn’t
Engaging local communities in land management while blocking industrial extraction is key to saving biodiversity in protected areas, according to a recent article in Science magazine. Written by Professor of Geography and Nelson Institute affiliate Lisa Naughton and Nelson Institute alumna and University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) Geography & Environmental Systems Professor, Margaret Buck Holland, the article, "Losing ground in protected areas?” reveals that downgrading some park areas might help engage local communities in governing and managing biodiverse areas, as mandated by the international Convention on Biological Diversity.
JUNE 24, 2019
Dean Robbins speaks at a dedication ceremony for the new heritage marker that honors the Ho-Chunk Nation
On June 18, 2019 a dedication ceremony was held on Bascom Hill to commemorate the addition of a new heritage marker that recognizes the land as the ancestral home of the Ho-Chunk and acknowledges the circumstances that led to their forced removal. Around 30 elected leaders and citizens of the Ho-Chunk Nation attended the ceremony as well as leaders from UW–Madison, including Chancellor Rebecca Blank and Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies Dean Paul Robbins.
JUNE 18, 2019
Tipping the scales of environmental justice
Growing up, in Guadalajara, Mexico, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies alumna Angélica Sánchez experienced both the positive and negative impacts of urban living. Although she moved to northern Wisconsin when she was twelve, those impacts weighed heavily on Sánchez, fueling her desire to increase environmental justice and support for children living in large urban areas such as Guadalajara. In an effort to be a part of the solution, Sánchez majored in Conservation and Environmental Science at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. A first generation college student, Sánchez saw the value of expanding her knowledge of environmental justice, so she connected with Nelson Institute International and Professional Programs Director, Nathan Schulfer, who introduced her to the Environmental Conservation Professional Master’s program (EC).
JUNE 13, 2019
Mental Health, Monarchs, and a Master’s
Along the bike paths of Iowa, mixed in with the lush green grass and the wildflowers, is the unassuming, but essential milkweed plant. The host plant of Monarch Butterflies, this green, leafy vegetation has been declining throughout the pollinator’s migration route. But during large biking events throughout the state of Iowa, you’re likely to see cyclists trying to change that fact by tossing seedballs – clay and soil mixed with native nectar plant seeds, including milkweed—into the grassy areas along the roadside. This effort is led by Milkweed Matters, an organization that supports pollinators by increasing their habitat in roadsides, an often forgotten slice of land. Started by Kelly Green Guilbeau in 2014, Milkweed Matters has spread more than 130,000 seedballs across Iowa, but for Guilbeau, there is still more to do. In fact, last summer she began a new, very personal conservation project, joining the Nelson Institute environmental conservation professional program as a graduate student.
JUNE 12, 2019
Sisters in Stewardship
As children, sisters Ismat and Iffat Bhuiyan dreamed of attending the University of Wisconsin-Madison. For Ismat, who was a few years older than Iffat, that dream became a reality in 2011, when she began her first semester as a biology major at UW-Madison. For Iffat, that dream came to fruition a few years later when she began her freshman year in the UW-Madison College of Engineering. While both were thrilled to be a Badger, they were looking for a way to connect their interest in environmental conservation with their career goals. That’s when Ismat happened upon the Nelson Institute Environmental Studies Certificate and the Nelson Institute Community Environmental Scholars Program (CESP), a discovery that ultimately shaped the career trajectory for both sisters.
JUNE 11, 2019
Board of Visitors member & Nelson Institute alumnus Matt Dannenberg receives the Extraordinary People Award
On June 4, 2019 Nelson Institute alumnus (’10) and Board of Visitors member, Matt Dannenberg received the Extraordinary People Award from the Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters (WLCV). Dannenberg, who currently serves as the Communications & Legislative Director at Public Service Commission of Wisconsin, received the award in honor of his efforts to protect state and natural resources. His notable contributions include his work to develop the Wisconsin Native Vote program, which encourages tribal members to vote and run for office and his eight years of service with the WLCV, which promotes public policy that benefits public health and natural resources.
JUNE 10, 2019
Nelson Institute affiliate Greg Nemet examines the drivers behind solar energy success in his new book
Discover the lessons solar energy can teach us about climate change innovations in the new book, How Solar Energy Became Cheap by Nelson Institute affiliate and La Follette School Professor Greg Nemet. Published on June 10, 2019, by Routledge, Nemet’s book includes a look at the impetus behind solar energy’s success and how other technologies can benefit from the lessons learning during solar energy’s rise. Read more.