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Milner to retire as vice provost for academic affairs

November 11, 2021 By Doug Erickson

Vice Provost for Academic Affairs Jocelyn Milner has announced plans to retire at the end of the 2021-22 academic year following a career of more than three decades at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

Milner, who directs Academic Planning and Institutional Research (APIR), will continue her full duties through Dec. 31. Beginning Jan. 1, she will step away from daily responsibilities and focus on a defined set of projects until her retirement in summer 2022.

Portrait of Jocelyn Milner

Jocelyn Milner

Milner came to UW–Madison in 1988 as a postdoctoral researcher in biochemistry and went on to build a 33-year career on campus, mostly in academic administration. She joined APIR as an analyst in 1999 and has been its director since 2003. She became vice provost of academic affairs in 2016.

“Jocelyn has made an extraordinary impact at UW–Madison, shepherding a vast array of academic programs and policies, including our new portfolio of revenue-generating programs and our online portfolio,” says Provost Karl Scholz. “It is hard to imagine the operations of the Provost’s Office without her exceptional knowledge and skills. But we look forward to her continuing contributions in the months ahead and wish her all the best in the next chapter of her career.”

Milner’s achievements include implementing the Lumen academic and curricular management platform, leading the university’s successful 10-year institutional accreditation review in 2019, helping increase student graduation rates and time-to-degree metrics to all-time highs, and substantially boosting the university’s data infrastructure in the areas of institutional research and data analytics.

“Jocelyn Milner has built one of the best educational analytics departments in the country,” says Chancellor Rebecca Blank. “She’s led our accreditation reviews and was instrumental in our efforts to increase graduation rates and reduce time to degree. I thank her for many years of excellent service to UW.”

Milner received her BS in biological sciences and PhD in biochemistry from the University of Guelph in Canada. Prior to joining APIR, she was a research scientist and instructor in the UW–Madison Department of Plant Pathology.

“When I came to UW–Madison in 1988 for a two-year postdoc, I never expected that I would have such a long and productive career here,” Milner says. “I’m so grateful to all the amazing colleagues who have made this work so satisfying and rewarding.”

Beginning Jan. 1, Allison La Tarte, an APIR associate director, will serve as interim associate vice provost for academic planning and institutional research. La Tarte joined APIR in 2014, having previously worked at the Wisconsin Legislative Audit Bureau. She received her master’s degree in public affairs from Indiana University. A search will be conducted to fill the permanent position.