I read an article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel a few months ago with great interest. It was the story of a University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee education professor who was struggling to make ends meet. My story is not entirely different from his, except that I had the opportunity to make a change, and it led me to accept a position with a university just south of Wisconsin’s border.
My story is one that I fear is being replicated throughout the UW System.
In order to put my recent decision in context, I think it is useful to share a portion of my life story (albeit a condensed version). I was born in Green Bay and moved to Milwaukee at a young age. I attended Forest Home Elementary School, Kosciuszko Middle School and Milwaukee Trade and Technical High School.
No one in my family had ever attended college before my older brother did. A few years later, I followed him to UWM. I went on to earn a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree and a doctorate from UWM. Upon graduation, I took a research position in Madison but remained in Milwaukee because my wife and I enjoyed the area and were closer to family (my wife grew up in Greendale, attended Marquette University and has been working at Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin for the past 22 years).