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Showcase spotlights ideas for campus improvements

March 11, 2014

Showcase 2014 logo


Showcase – where creative ideas, innovations, best practices and success stories from across campus are highlighted – moves to Varsity Hall at Union South on Wednesday, April 2.

The event, now in its 15th year, is a great opportunity to explore dozens of ideas that have been successfully implemented at UW–Madison and converse with the individuals who made them happen. Last year, more than 500 people attended the poster presentations, break-out sessions and keynote presentation.

During the morning session, which runs from 8-11 a.m., Varsity Hall will host 65 posters demonstrating a wide range of improvements.

Connections made at Showcase often spur follow-up meetings where projects can be explored in greater depth and cross-campus collaborations are set in motion. People frequently remark that Showcase is their opportunity to meet UW colleagues and learn of projects they would never know about otherwise. Whether you can spend the full three hours or only 45 minutes, the poster session is well worth a visit.

Some topics for this year’s session include:

  • Collaborating across campus boundaries
  • Using technology to improve processes
  • Consolidating related data into a single source
  • Using scenarios to enhance students’ educational experience
  • Improving advising and career services for students
  • Supervising student workers
  • Streamlining the scholarship application process
  • Developing a campus-wide leadership framework
  • Several of the latest Educational Innovation projects
  • And many more.

During the poster session, attendees can also attend one of the break-out sessions. About 45 minutes in length, they are held in separate rooms and feature panels of speakers. This year, the break-outs will focus on data visualization, career-ready Students and three Educational Innovation success stories. All sessions encourage audience Q&A and no advance sign-up is required to attend them. Two will be offered at 9 a.m. and two at 10 a.m.

The theme of the keynote address this year will be “Design Thinking,” presented by Dave Franchino, president and principal of designconcepts, a Madison-based design and innovation company.

Franchino, who has also been a lecturer in the UW College of Engineering, will review the basic concepts of design thinking and offer some ideas about applying those concepts in a university setting. He will be introduced by Soyeon Shim, dean of the School of Human Ecology, who has been championing design thinking within SoHE and across campus.

The keynote session will also take place in Varsity Hall, where a free buffet lunch will be available beginning at 11:15 a.m. It will also be streamed live via the Office of Quality Improvement’s website. Registration to attend the keynote is required by March 24.

OQI maintains a list of this year’s posters and break-out sessions, along with posters and presentations from prior years, here. 

Showcase is free, but registration is requested – click here to register for the poster session. A separate advance registration is required for the keynote session, which includes a free lunch. 

Showcase is sponsored jointly by the Office of Quality Improvement and the Office of Human Resource Development and is open and free to all UW–Madison faculty, staff and students.