A SoHE Alumni Learning Event


Recapture the thrill of learning! Join UW School of Human Ecology alumni for an afternoon of hands-on workshops, talks by faculty, food, and fun. It’s time for you to go BACK TO SCHOOL!

Friday, September 15

1:00 – 7:00 PM
Day of Schedule

Nancy Nicholas Hall | 1300 Linden Drive | Madison, WI 53706

Register Now!

RED Talk: Keynote Presentation

Dr. Larissa DuncanMindfulness and Well-Being
Larissa Duncan, PhD Associate Professor, Elizabeth C. Davies Chair in Child & Family Well-Being 
One of the newest graduate courses offered in SoHE covers the science of mindfulness and contemplative practices and includes experiential practices that create well-being when employed in daily life.  Dr. Larissa Duncan will share the cutting edge science of mental training and offer simple tools you can use right away to experience greater well-being. Dr. Duncan’s related research on mindfulness during pregnancy and childbirth has recently been featured in the New York Times and The Guardian.


Dr. Sigan HartleyOptimizing Well-Being in Families of Children with Autism
Sigan Hartley, PhD, HDFS Associate Professor
For the past five years, Hartley’s research lab has followed 180 Wisconsin families who have a child with autism, the neurodevelopmental condition that affects one in 68 children in the U.S. After an overview of autism, Dr. Hartley explores what her research has revealed about family experiences—both the joyful and challenging—as well as strategies for optimizing family well-being.


Dr. Linda RobertsThe Science of Love & Intimacy
Linda J. Roberts, PhD, HDFS Professor
Relationships matter—at work, at home, and even at the grocery story. The quality of our interpersonal relationships is the single most important factor determining our overall life satisfaction.  But, why are our relationships so central to well-being?  And, what are the “secrets” to successful close relationships?  Dr. Linda Roberts has studied relationships for the past 30 years and shares her insights on the findings and theories from the emerging field of “relationship science.”

Jerry O'Brien.Intergenerational Management: From Boomers to Millennials to Gen Z
Jerry O’Brien, Executive Director, Kohl’s Center For Retailing 
In his role at SoHE, Jerry O’Brien successfully interacts with a range of partners, from students to Fortune 100 CEOs. For this workshop he’ll bring to light the advantages and challenges he’s found when working across generations, focusing on Baby Boomers to Millennials but also Gen Y. He’ll also provide empathy-based solutions that attendees can use to gain organizational effectiveness and boost camaraderie.

Linda LepeMoney & Mindfulness: Making Your Brain & Wallet BFFs
Linda Lepe, Director of Consumer Finance & Financial Planning and Financial Life Skills programs
It’s no surprise that well-being and money are closely connected. Lepe, instructor for some of UW’s most popular financial well-being classes, discusses the latest science of mindfulness and how we approach our financial lives. Receive quick tips and activities you can start using right away!


Dr. Heather Kirkorian

Your Mind on Media: The Impact of Technology on Work & Well-Being
Heather Kirkorian, PhD, HDFS Associate Professor
Do you constantly check emails, text messages, or social media alerts during the day? Is your phone the last thing you look at before you go to bed and the first thing you look at in the morning? Do you even check it in the middle of the night? Join Dr. Heather Kirkorian in a conversation about research on technology, work, and well-being then brainstorm ideas for intentional technology that can keep us connected without being overloaded.


Lesley SagerLiving the Good Life: How Design Thinking Can Help Solve Some of Life’s “Wicked” Problems
Lesley SagerFaculty Associate, NCIDQ
Whether it’s how to get our children to eat healthy food, what to make for dinner, or how to buy the perfect gift, we all have little and big stresses in our daily lives.  Led by one of campus’ leading design thinking experts, this interactive workshop will provide problem-solving protocol that can help improve daily life. No design skills are needed! Just a desire to approach problems in human-centered way. 


If you have questions, please contact Linda Zwicker at lazwicker@wisc.edu or 608-265-5136.