Dear participants and visitors,
I’d like to add my welcome to Brad’s! The 2008 institute participants are a rich mix, coming to us from a mosaic of institutions and from intriguing locales around the globe. Leaders and participants, we will all learn mutually from one another, recharge our batteries, work hard, and have fun. There’s always a lot of laughter at the Summer Institutes, sometimes there are made-up songs to commemorate the occasion, and occasionally there are tears, sometimes tears of joy.
Madison is one of my favorite places. In a funny way I came of age there, brought my two daughters there from the east, and then got the surprise of my life when the university just casually admitted me as a student. I’d dropped by when the girls were in school to explore the campus, asked a question about taking a class, and was ushered into the office of a genuine advisor who told me I could start right away. What a wonderful surprise. My youngest daughter went to kindergarten while I took an English class, lit and comp. Wow. My world changed in Madison, and I found my calling when I began there as a TA.
The university has morphed since then. It was an exciting, beautiful place, and the teaching and learning that went on were awesome. It has continued to grow and to retain its place among the top research institutions in the country. Ask Brad, and he will tell you about the great research that goes on there.
The UW-Madison Writing Center (http://www.wisc.edu/writing/) is one of the best in the country, and we are lucky to be able to visit, meet the staff, and see what happens there. I was a graduate tutor there in the seventies!
It’s an honor to work with Brad, Lisa, and a most excellent team of leaders. I am so looking forward to the Institute.