University of Wisconsin–Madison

2017​ ​Class​ ​Act​ ​Program​ ​Succeeds​ ​Yet​ ​Another​ ​Year

By: Matthew Tragesser, Communications Intern

This​ ​past​ ​August,​ ​incoming​ ​UW-Madison​ ​students​ ​participated​ ​in​ ​the​ ​2017​ ​Class​ ​Act​ ​program,​ ​a program​ ​that​ ​aims​ ​to​ ​develop​ ​students​ ​into​ ​leaders​ ​within​ ​the​ ​campus​ ​community.

Now​ ​in​ ​its​ ​third​ ​year,​ ​Class​ ​Act​ ​ran​ ​from​ ​August​ ​26-29​ ​and​ ​included​ ​136​ ​first​ ​year​ ​students. As​ ​one​ ​of​ ​UW-Madison’s​ ​exclusive​ ​leadership​ ​initiatives, ​​students​ ​received​ ​the​ ​opportunity​ ​to build​ ​a​ ​sense​ ​of​ ​belonging​ ​by​ ​engaging​ ​in​ ​team​ ​building, ​ ​exploring, ​ ​and​ ​developing​ ​leadership capacities​ ​and​ ​meeting​ ​new​ ​people. 

The​ ​four​-​day​ ​program​ ​featured​ ​a​ ​wide​ ​variety​ ​of​ ​sessions​ ​ranging​ ​from​ ​guest​ ​speakers​ ​to leadership​ ​workshops​ ​to​ ​social​ ​events.

Eric​ ​Knueve,​ ​the​ ​assistant​ ​dean​ ​of​ ​students​ ​who​ ​oversees​ ​the​ ​Class​ ​Act​ ​program,​ ​was especially​ ​excited​ ​about​ ​this​ ​year’s​ ​program​ ​due​ ​to​ ​some​ ​noteworthy​ ​changes​ ​ from​ ​previous years.

“The​ ​big​ ​difference​ ​this​ ​year​ ​was​ ​that​ ​we​ ​had​ ​students ​who​ ​went​ ​through​ ​a​ ​6-week​ ​facilitator training​ ​this​ ​spring,​ ​that​ ​presented​ ​most​ ​of​ ​the​ ​material​ ​for​ ​the​ ​program.​ ​Each​ ​of​ ​these​ ​student facilitators​ ​has​ ​participated​ ​in​ ​Class​ ​Act​ ​as​ ​a​ ​participant,”​ ​Knueve​ ​said.

The Class Act program will continue through fall with sessions and workshops that allow students to reconnect and see how students are putting those leadership skills to use.

Following​ ​completion​ ​of​ ​the​ ​program,​ ​Class​ ​Act​ ​participants​ ​were​ ​able​ ​to:

  • Know​ ​they​ ​can​ ​make​ ​a​ ​difference​ ​on​ ​campus​ ​with​ ​their​ ​actions
  • Develop​ ​leadership​ ​skills​ ​and​ ​clarify​ ​connections​ ​to​ ​intervention
  • Learn​ ​how​ ​to​ ​use​ ​leadership​ ​skills​ ​to​ ​intervene​ ​in​ ​campus​ ​settings​ ​where​ ​change​ ​is needed
  • Form​ ​strong​ ​connections​ ​with​ ​peers​ ​who​ ​are​ ​committed​ ​to​ ​this​ ​work