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Preparing for a lifetime of change

If you are an undergraduate in the 21st century, you’d better be nimble. And alert. The knowledge you’re trying to acquire is a fast-moving target. So is the job market you’ll enter when you graduate.

That’s the challenge facing the 2,200-plus undergrads currently enrolled in the College.

In their world, there are few constants. The technology that is cutting-edge when they are freshmen may be out of date by the time they graduate. The science they’re studying is developing so rapidly that textbooks can’t keep up. They’re preparing for highly specialized careers that may not yet exist. When they graduate, they’ll dive into a job market that is highly competitive and global in scale.

Rest assured: When these students graduate, they’ll be ready, thanks to an independent, entrepreneurial approach to education that teaches students to educate themselves.

EDUCATING THEMSELVES
By earning a degree in landscape architecture, Katie Selin followed the footsteps of her grandfather, who graduated in the College’s first LA class in the 1940s and then started his own nursery and landscape firm. Read more…

For his sophomore-year research project in the College”s honors program, Scott Laeser studied water quality on a branch of the Pecatonica River that runs through land his family owns near Argyle. Read more…

Becky Adams followed a tradition that”s as old as the College itself. She majored in dairy science, then returned to her family”s organic dairy farm in Eleva (population 635), near Eau Claire, to apply what she”d learned. Read more…

Maybe you’re a bit bewildered by biotechnology and genetics but feel that you need to better understand this lightning-paced area of science. If so, you have plenty of company. And, fortunately, you will have help from people like Ann Kronenwetter — who both understands the science and has the skills to explain it to all sorts of audiences. Read more…

Long before he graduated, Sean Bruggink knew what he wanted to do with his biochemistry degree. Growing up in Minocqua and working in the local emergency room during the summers after his sophomore and junior years, he saw the importance of solid doctor-patient relationships and quality public health education. Read more…

Aaron Wunnicke has racked up some mileage. As an undergraduate he went to the Wisconsin northwoods, the Pacific northwest and sunny Spain. While on campus, he was virtually in Massachusetts, using satellite technology to analyze wildlife habitat in that state. Read more…

By the time Adam Lechter arrived in Madison, he had earned an associate”s degree from the famed Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, N.Y. and tried his hand cooking at Blackbird, a trendy restaurant in Chicago”s West Loop. While he knew quite a bit about food, he wanted to learn more about the science behind it. Read more…

Bridget Holcomb’s focus at the UW-Madison and her career plans can both be summed up in two words: sustainable agriculture. Read more…