Meet Our 2018-2019 Student Employees of the Year!

Second Place: Auna Kaufmann-Schwartz
Assistant Ranger
UW Arboretum

Hometown: Holmen, Wisconsin (has also lived in Milwaukee and Denver, Colorado)
Major: Wildlife Ecology
Graduation: May 2019
Future plans: Field technician for the Bird Conservancy of the Rockies in Wyoming

Other campus involvementThe Wildlife Society

What is your favorite part of your job? My favorite had to be the people. The Arboretum helped Madison become a home to me. I received endless advice from current Ranger Stephanie Petersen and former Ranger (current Research Associate) Christy Lowney, I met some of my closest friends here in Madison, and I was given many opportunities to explore my interests outside the scope of my precise job description.

What is the most important thing you’ve learned in your job? There are concrete skills such as plant identification, trail maintenance, and prescribed burning that I can put on my resume, but there are less palpable skills as well. I’ve learned how to best interact with visitors who may be breaking rules, how to express myself firmly but agreeably to find a solution, and all the different paths that my career could take.

First Place: Morgan Larson
Assistant Meat Lab Manager

Hometown: Loyal, Wisconsin
Major: Dairy Science
Graduation: May 2019
Future plans: Continue working in the meat science industry

Other campus involvement: Women’s Club Ice Hockey and Badger Meat Science Club

What is your favorite part of your job? All the great people I have met along the way. This includes top level professors, supervisors and coworkers, inspectors, and client company personnel. The best group of people I have met are the other students who work here with a passion for meat science. I couldn’t do what I do without a great crew of students like I have.

What is the most important thing you’ve learned in your job? I came into this job knowing absolutely nothing about Meat Science, so I learned everything from harvesting animals to selling finished product in our retail store and every little step along the way. I’ve learned about managing students, working with state inspection agencies, and following food safety plans. I have learned more than I ever thought possible about meat science and look forward to continuing to learn after graduation!

Third Place: Brody Bien
Student Research Assistant
Department of Surgery

Hometown: Savage, Minnesota
Major: B.S. in Cell and Molecular Biology
Graduation: May 2020

Other campus involvement: Board Member for Student Emergency Medical Services, Biocore member,  and Researcher in the Huttenlocher Lab

What is your favorite part of your job? My favorite part of the job is being able to interact with so many amazing people, and the unique challenges and opportunities that I’m tasked with daily.

What is the most important thing you’ve learned in your job? I have learned so much in the past three years I’ve been at this job, however the most important thing I would say is communicating and working with a team of people to reach a common goal, in our case that goal being to help advance research for the future well-being of patients.

The Student Employment team would like to thank the campus partners who helped select the winners of this years’ competition: Ben Clark, Jennifer Brown, Adin Palau, Tanya Hubanks, Dan Wehr, and Kim Mueller.