Meet Our 2021-2022 Student Employees of the Year!

Each year the Student Employment team opens nominations for Student Employee of the Year. With nearly 9,000 students working in thousands of roles across campus, this represents a prestigious honor to ultimately appreciate the invaluable work completed by students each day. The impact of each of these students is tremendously important and felt by the entire campus community. In addition to acknowledging these contributions on our campus, our top nominee is also passed along for consideration for Regional Student Employee of the Year as well as National Student Employee of the Year, which are programs administered by the Midwest Student Employment Association in conjunction with the National Student Employment Association.

 UW-Madison First Place Winner-Dakota Roettger

Student Employment Lead-Office of Student Financial Aid

Hometown: Eau Claire, WI
Major: Marketing and Management & Human Resources
Graduation: May 2022

Upon graduation Dakota will be joining the marketing team at AlphaSights in New York City.

Other campus involvement: Dakota has previously been involved with an undergraduate marketing student organization, MKT, as well as Collegiate 4-H UW-Madison. Currently Dakota serves as an ambassador for the LGBTQ+ Affinity Group in the Wisconsin School of Business. Dakota also enjoys spending time with friends at the Memorial Union Terrace, viewing art at the Chazen, and taking in all of the opportunities that surround the UW campus.

What is your favorite part of your job?  Dakota’s favorite part of his job is the people he gets to work with. Dakota is very appreciative for the guidance and support provided by his supervisors throughout his undergraduate career and feels lucky to have worked with such a talented group of people. The friendships Dakota has made while working as a student employee will remain a highlight of his experience at UW-Madison, and have played an integral role in shaping the person he is today.

What is the most important thing you’ve learned in your job? Dakota’s student employment experience has prepared him for his career, acting as a fantastic compliment to the lessons learned in his classes. Dakota’s employment on campus has provided many opportunities to practice skills in communication, marketing, project management, and so much more.

Hometown: Sherwood, WI
Major: Biochemistry and Psychology
Graduation: May 2023

Other campus involvement: Victoria is part of Alpha Omega Epsilon, a sorority for underrepresented genders in STEM and also plays the flute in the University Band.

What is your favorite part of your job? Victoria’s favorite part of her job is the opportunity she gets to learn and develop new professional skills as well as network with individuals at other institutions UW-Madison has partnerships with.

What is the most important thing you’ve learned in your job? Victoria has learned so much from having her job, but what will stay with her in the future is the process of doing research and coding qualitative data.

UW-Madison Second Place: Victoria Zurakowski

Administrative Assistant-Center for the Improvement of Mentored Experiences in Research

UW-Madison Third Place: Willem Weigel

Lead Special Awards Analyst-Office of Student Financial Aid

Hometown: Waukesha, WI
Major: Triple Major in Economics, Political Science, and History
Graduation: May 2022

After graduation Willem will be continuing his education at UW-Madison by pursuing a Master’s of Public Affair at the La Follette School.

Other campus involvement: Willem is involved with the peer student mentorship program Lead@Econ as well as ProGov2l, a searchable digital library of progressive policies and practices for local government.

What is your favorite part of your job? Willem’s favorite part of his job is collaborating and working with the Scholarship Support/WiSH team. Not only have they been supportive of his professional development, but they have provided a great workplace environment that is lively, flexible, and a joy to be a part of.

What is the most important thing you’ve learned in your job? Working with scholarship administrators across campus has taught Willem how important collaboration can be in a largely decentralized environment. The work the team has done has allowed Willem to learn how a focus on inclusivity and holistic review of applicants is vital for the future of not only scholarships, but financial aid more generally at UW-Madison. Willem hopes to continue seeing the team and office expand opportunities and financial support across all our campus communities.

The Student Employment team would like to thank the campus partners who helped select the winners of this years’ competition:

  • Hannah Pringle, Department of Information Technology (DoIT)
  • Allyson Nysted, Division of Recreation & Wellbeing
  • Kasie Strahl, Office of Student Financial Aid
  • Adin Palau, Community Relations and Campus Engagement
  • Gwynette Hall, McBurney Disability Resource Center