Faculty and staff encouraged to participate in the CALS Freshman Seminar

Over a decade ago, a group of CALS faculty created the CALS Freshman Seminar (InterAg 155) as a way to expose students to the wide range of disciplines and opportunities the College offers. The course is associated with important academic outcomes and receives very positive evaluations from students and from the faculty / staff who participate in the class. I am always looking for new people to be group leaders for the course. So, if you have an interest in working with new undergraduate students, take a look at the course details below and contact me (jklatt@cals.wisc.edcu) if you would like to be involved.

Course Details

  • The class meets from 3:30 – 4:20 on Thursdays during the fall term.
  • The seminar is a 1-credit course in which big topics in food, agriculture, energy, health, and the environment are presented to new students. The class alternates between lectures and small group discussions.
  • Faculty and staff from around the College serve as group mentors and meet with the small groups (n = 12 – 15 students) six times during the semester.
  • The time commitment for section leaders is about 2 hours per week (this includes email with students, the six small group meetings, and grading).

A recent course evaluation showed students who take the CALS Freshman Seminar have higher first term grade point averages, faster time to degree, higher faculty interaction, higher retention in the College, and fewer academic actions than those who did not take the course. Students benefit greatly from the wide participation among faculty and staff across the College, and group leaders often comment that they enjoy working with the course and with the new CALS students.