The Martin’s are the third family to be featured by the campus in their billboard promotion. Michael Martin, Monica Martin, Margaret Martin and Marie Flanagan (four of seven siblings in the Martin family) can best be described as high achievers and are fondly remembered by many long term faculty at UW-Washington County (UW-WC). Each of the four completed the first two years of their college studies at UW-WC and went on to earn their bachelor’s degrees and move into very successful careers.
Michael transferred to UW-Milwaukee, where he completed a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry and a master’s degree in Organic Chemistry. He works as a Senior Systems Analyst for Eli Lilly and Company in Indianapolis. Michael says, “Small class sizes on a small campus that were taught by professors instead of teaching assistants was a fantastic start for a career in a demanding field like the sciences – that kind of direct access to faculty meant you didn’t have to struggle for long before getting solid help, and the close knit campus kept you honest about your commitment and dedication as a student. In addition, living at home a tad longer and being able to commute for the first few years helped me manage the expense. Without that kind of beginning, I’m not sure I would be enjoying the same success and rewards.”
Margaret, completed both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in Linguistics at UW-Madison. After graduation, she served in the Peace Corps in Sri Lanka for three years. Margaret believes that it was the leadership opportunities at UW-WC that helped her receive a recommendation letter from the chancellor for her Peace Corps application. “It’s not clear that I would have been able to do as much at such high levels in the bigger pond at Madison.” Today, Margaret teaches in the Intensive English Program in the Department of Modern Languages and the Center for International Education at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. She continues her volunteerism in her parish, teaching in the religious education program.
Monica transferred to UW-Madison, where she completed a double major in Cultural Anthropology and Physical Geography. The small UW-WC campus meant “more direct and personal interaction with my professors” and “all but two of my UW-WC credits transferred to UW-Madison, when I matriculated to that campus, which meant I could easily continue my studies and didn’t have to worry about retaking any course work.” She’s currently employed as the project manager in Business Technology Services for Total Administrative Services Corporation (TASC), headquartered in Madison. Monica remembers an atmosphere at UW-WC that “was always positive – student government, the newspaper, sports, plays and musicals.” Her fond memories also include the annual art fieldtrip to Chicago, “Puttin’ on the Ritz” formal dance, playing foosball in the Rathskellar, and a summer “fishing trip” with Professor Wayne Schaefer to Canada.
Marie transferred to UW-Oshkosh, where she completed a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s in Public Administration. Marie serves as a Senior Editor for the North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program and as Sustainable Food Correspondent for Minnesota Monthly Magazine. Marie remembers the “fantastic English professors and my work with the Writer’s Guild at UW-WC” and notes that it “contributed to a solid writing foundation.” Since then, Marie has “hit the ground running” with her writing career and she hasn’t stopped.
Each of the Martin’s has fond memories of their student days at UW-WC. The whole family has one particular memory that has also become somewhat of a classic among long-time UW-WC staff. As an active member of the SGA (Student Government Association), Margaret frequently found herself delivering items for various campus events. This particular incident happened one day when she was unloading some boxes near the theatre at the top of the hill. As she slammed the hatch on her station wagon, the car slipped out of park and her car rolled backwards down the hill. According to Margaret, “It took out a little light pole, and narrowly missed Mike Murphy’s car and one of the big cement light poles as it crossed the circle by the front doors.” It then rolled down the hill and across the soccer field until it finally ran out of steam and came to a stop. “Thankfully, all I had to do was replace the little light (that was expensive enough for a college kid!).”
The Martins have two other successful siblings, Mary and Mark. Mary Martin (Jones) completed a dental assistant program at Lakeshore Technical after high school. Unlike her siblings who moved away from the West Bend area, Mary lives in town and after completing a degree in marketing from MPTC, works as an advertising consultant for Conley Media. Mark Martin pursued his passion in music at UW-Whitewater. As a professional pianist, he performs regularly in the Fox Valley area. He also works fulltime as a computer technician for Computer Corner in Oshkosh.
Another sibling, Matthew died when he was five. The Martin family has since remembered him with a $1,000 scholarship, given annually to a returning UW-WC student who is pursuing a post-secondary education leading to a Bachelor of Science or a Bachelor of Arts degree in the UW System.
Parents, Rose and Vernon Martin, attend the fall Convocation ceremony each year and meet with their scholarship recipient. The joy of helping a student who is financially in need, helps alleviate some of the pain they still feel from the loss of their son.
UW-Washington County is located at 400 University Drive in West Bend. For admission information, visit the campus website at washington.uwc.edu or phone Student Affairss at 262-335-5201.