Campus News

A year in the making: Campus news from convocation to commencement

September: Mike Leckrone announced his retirement. 

UW-Madison band director, Michael Leckrone, announced the 2018-’19 academic year would be his last, leaving behind a 50-year legacy at the university.

October: Students protested Brett Kavanaugh 

UW-Madison students and community members participated in the #CancelKavanaugh Walkout Against Sexual Assault on Oct. 4 in response to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s trial.  

The protest was part of a national call to action by the International Women’s Strike. People marched in solidarity with Dr. Christine Blasey Ford, Anita Hill and all other sexual violence survivors in cities ranging from Seattle to Washington D.C. 

November: Student voter turnout soars in 2018 Gubernatorial Election

Communications specialist Xai Xiong said that of the eight total polling locations on campus, the voter turnout totaled 87 percent of those eligible to vote at these wards. Additionally, throughout the city of Madison, the pre-registered voter turnout totaled 92.9 percent.

December: Theta Chi Fraternity no longer affiliated with UW

Theta Chi renounced their student organization status in a letter to Chancellor Rebecca Blank. This came after nearly a year of investigation into the fraternity following multiple allegations of misconduct. 

The university found the chapter responsible for charges of underage drinking, inappropriate text messaging and Rohypnol drugging, which resulted in a 10-month suspension. 

January: Campus closes because of snow, cold

UW-Madison students petitioned for the closure of school due to extreme cold temperatures. Chancellor Rebecca Blank called off classes for the first time in decades. 

February: Student org matches UW students based on survey data

Datamatch, a matchmaking service that originally started at Harvard University in 1994, made its appearance at UW-Madison in February.  

Students who participated had to answer a brief survey and woke up on Valentine’s Day to an email with 10 student matches based on their responses. 

March: External Greek life review

UW-Madison conducted an external review of fraternity and sorority life on campus in order to increase safety and better the overall student experience of these organizations. 

The purpose of the external review was to assess, clarify and strengthen the relationship between the university and the Greek community, which has been present on campus since 1857. 

April: Solar panels on Gordon Dining and Event Center 

Students from Helios, a student organization that aims to create renewable energy sources on campus, along with university officials from the Office of Sustainability, University Housing and Facilities Planning and Management worked for more than a year to create, test and implement solar panels on the roof of Gordon. 

The solar panels are projected to produce 42,800 kilowatt hours of electricity a year, the equivalent energy use of five typical Wisconsin homes. This will contribute to powering Gordon daily but will not cover the entire cost of lighting and heating the building. 

May: JJ Watt to speak at Spring 2019 commencement 

National Football League star J.J. Watt will return to Camp Randall as the commencement speaker for the spring graduation. 

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