Alumnus speaks up on state budget; campus busy with legislator visit, Career Conference, ‘Stout Proud’ film


Joseph Pregont, President and CEO of Prent Corp.

I wanted to share with you a column that ran in today’s Milwaukee Journal Sentinel written by a great friend and supporter of UW-Stout, Joseph Pregont, the president and CEO of Prent Corporation in Janesville who graduated from here in 1981 and was the 2011 Cabot Executive in Residence. This 2,000-employee company has dozens of UW-Stout graduates in its workforce.

In the column, Joe supports Gov. Walker’s 2017-19 state budget proposal that calls for increased funding for the UW System, as well as salary increases for UW employees. I believe this column will have a significant impact on our advocacy efforts for the UW budget, and I want to publicly thank Joe for adding his voice to our supporters. We also are working with other employers in Wisconsin to join our advocacy efforts.

Rep. Stafsholt holds listening session on campus

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UW-Stout Chancellor Bob Meyer, left, with Rep. Rob Stafsholt.

Speaking of advocacy, I had the privilege Tuesday afternoon of introducing state Rep. Rob Stafsholt before his listening session in the Memorial Student Center. I thanked Rob for holding his meeting on campus and had a chance to explain our thoughts on Gov. Walker’s 2017-19 state budget.

The meeting was well-attended, and the speakers included members of the Stout Student Association leadership.

The Leader-Telegram covered the meeting; the story is available on their website.

Career Conference a great experience

I don’t think I could ever spend too much time at the two Career Conferences held on campus, in the fall and again in late winter. I enjoyed walking around the conference Tuesday in Johnson Fieldhouse Multipurpose Room speaking to the employers who were looking to hire Cooperative Education students as well as permanent employees and to students who were seeking those positions.

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There are many UW-Stout alumni in the employer booths, and I even ran into a couple of former students I remembered having in class some years ago. The employers seemed pleased with the quality and the quantity of the students they were attracting to their booths.

Career Services does a great job organizing this event. More information is available on their website.

Alumni Association film truly thrilling

I still am marveling at the tremendous “Stout Proud” video produced for the Alumni Association that premiered last Friday during Stout Proud Day in the Memorial Student Center. The video was made by two recent alumni, Christopher Bartlett and R.T. Vrieze, who co-own Knorth Studios in Eau Claire.

More than 55,000 people have seen this video since it was posted Friday on our Facebook page. I encourage everyone who hasn’t seen the video to watch it.

I’d also like to thank Christopher and R.T. for the time they spent producing the video and everyone at the Alumni Association who worked on the project.