WISCIENCE Peer Leader Program

The WISCIENCE Peer Leader program trains undergraduate students to support their peers in WISCIENCE programs and courses. WISCIENCE Peer Leaders (WPLs) will receive training in leadership skills and engage in leadership opportunities and reflection. WPLs are well poised to complete the UW–Madison Leadership Certificate.


Applications are currently closed.


Through the WISCIENCE Peer Leader program (WPL), WISCIENCE seeks to train a community of undergraduate leaders from all STEM disciplines.

Goals for the undergraduate students participating in WPL:

  1. Develop and practice leadership skills
  2. Engage in activities that fulfill the requirements of the UW–Madison Leadership Certificate
  3. Develop STEM identity through leadership training, leadership experiences, and professional development workshops
  4. Support fellow undergraduate students to be successful in STEM by providing peer leadership in WISCIENCE programs and courses

Questions? Contact WISCIENCE (connect@wiscience.wisc.edu).


WPL undergraduate students complete three components:

  1. Learn: Complete Integrated Science 230 Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership before or during their Peer Leader placement.
  2. Lead: Serve in a Peer Leader position in a STEM course or program.
  3. Develop: Participate in professional development workshops while serving in their Peer Leader placement.


WISCIENCE Peer Leader Positions:

There are several ways to get involved as a Peer Leader depending on your interests and schedule. Note: not all programs are available each semester (see position information below for details).


Reminders

  1. Before you apply, review the WISCIENCE Peer Leader positions and identify which one(s) you are interested in and qualified for. Note that application periods differ by position and may be in fall semester, spring semester, or both. 
  2. All students must complete Integrated Science 230 Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership before or during their Peer Leader placement. 
    • INTEGSCI 230 is offered in both fall and spring semesters 
    • Course schedule: in-person lecture on Tuesdays from 1:00–2:15 p.m.; in-person discussion on Thursdays from 1:00–1:50 p.m

How to Apply

Please assemble the following materials before you begin the application.

  1. An online application form. This will be available online when the application window is open.
  2. A statement of interest for each position you are applying for. If you are applying for multiple positions, you must submit a separate, unique statement for each one. Each statement should be about 250–500 words. Please include the following:
    • Why are you interested in serving in this specific WPL position? What do you hope to learn in this role?
    • What skills and experiences do you bring that will help you in this WPL position?
  3. Your ranked position preferences, if applying for multiple positions.

 

Questions about the application process? Contact connect@wiscience.wisc.edu.

Questions about a Peer Leader position? Contact the course/program director listed for that position (see below).

All WISCIENCE Peer Leader Positions

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INTEGSCI 100: Exploring Biology Peer Leader

Course director:  Dr. Cara Theisen (chtheisen@wisc.edu)

Description

Exploring Biology Peer Leaders support student success in Exploring Biology, a 2-credit course for first-year students interested in the biosciences. Peer Leaders support in-class activities, collaborate with instructors, give presentations about campus involvement, and provide guidance to students on opportunities and strategies to make the most of their Wisconsin experience. Students in Exploring Biology learn about the biosciences at the college level and the diversity of majors and beyond-the-classroom learning opportunities at UW–Madison.

Timeline

For Placement in… Complete These Steps
Fall 2024
  • Fall 2023: Apply
  • Spring 2024: Attend monthly meetings and take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed)
  • Fall 2024: Serve as Peer Leader

Requirements

  • Must be available to attend weekly Exploring Biology class sessions on Mondays OR Wednesdays from 2:25–4:20 p.m.
  • Must be available Friday afternoons during the fall semester; time TBD
  • Majoring in the biosciences or a related field

Responsibilities

  • Complete Integrated Science 230 Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership before or during Peer Leader placement
  • In spring semester, attend monthly Exploring Biology Peer Leader meetings (all other responsibilities below are for fall semester)
  • Attend assigned Exploring Biology class session each week (Mon OR Wed 2:25–4:20 p.m.) and weekly meetings with the Course Director and PL team (Friday afternoons)
  • Help connect students to co-curricular experiences and campus resources
  • In class, help facilitate student activities, develop and lead presentations about campus involvement and academic development, and work to develop personal relationships with students
  • Outside of class, hold office hours, organize trips to campus events, and correspond with students
  • Be proactive in supporting students and helping the instructional team offer a meaningful learning experience

Internship

Peer Leaders enroll in 2 credits in fall semester.

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INTEGSCI 140: Exploring Service in STEM Peer Leader

Course director: Dr. Anna Bishop Courtier (anna.courtier@wisc.edu)

Description

Students taking this course get a taste of public service in STEM and find out how to effectively engage various age groups in STEM. They will learn about university-community partnerships and the essential ingredients for successful outreach while also experiencing successful outreach first-hand by getting involved. Peer Leaders will facilitate student participation and active learning, and support and collaborate with instructors for the Exploring Service in STEM course, a one-credit seminar course for STEM-interested first-year students.

Timeline

For Placement in… Complete These Steps
Fall 2024
  • Fall 2023: Apply
  • Spring 2024: Take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed) and serve as Peer Leader

Requirements

Previous experience in a first-year seminar, experience working in the community, or participation in INTEGSCI 140/240/375 Exploring Service in Science/Engaged Children in Science/Service with Youth in STEM

Responsibilities

  • Complete Integrated Science 230 Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership before or during Peer Leader placement
  • Attend all required classroom sessions
  • Collaborate with the course instructor to provide instructional leadership for the course
  • Meet weekly with the assigned course instructor to assist in planning the curriculum and instructional activities
  • Coordinate with course instructor to meet with each student outside of class at least twice during the semester. This time period should be used to monitor the student’s academic progress and to intervene with appropriate recommendations that could assist with the student’s retention and success at UW–Madison
  • Help students become independent learners by modeling good student behavior—take notes, be on time, etc.
  • Publicize and support the academic policies and standards of UW–Madison Support and participate in the evaluation process of the class

Optional Internship

Peer Leaders may enroll in INTEGSCI 320 (Internship; 1 credit) in fall semester.

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INTEGSCI 230: Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership and Mentoring Peer Leader

Fall 2023 course instructor: Dr. Nancy Ruggeri (nruggeri@wisc.edu)

Description

Peer Leaders in Integrated Science 230 help facilitate student participation and active learning, and support and collaborate with the instructor for Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership and Mentoring, a 2-credit lecture/discussion course for STEM student leaders. Peer Leaders are able to draw on their own previous Peer Leadership experience to help new Peer Leaders consider how course content relates to real experiences supporting diverse students in STEM. Peer Leaders can expect to gain a deeper understanding of the significance of peer mentoring for student success, as well as develop their own skills related to leadership, collaboration, and communication.

Timeline

For Placement in… Complete These Steps
Spring 2024
  • Fall 2023: Apply
  • Spring 2024: Serve as Peer Leader

Requirements

  • Students must have completed Integrated Science 230 Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership with a grade of B or higher before applying for this position
  • Must be available to attend lecture and/or discussion (Lecture: Tuesdays 1:00–2:15 p.m.; Discussion: Thursdays 1:00–1:50 p.m.). Please note availability in the application.
  • Preferred qualification: has held a WISCIENCE peer leadership position or other leadership position at UW–Madison for one or more semesters

Responsibilities

  • Attend class sessions and weekly meetings with the instructor and PLs
  • Develop and lead presentations and activities in class, emphasizing campus involvement, academic development, and application of leadership and mentoring principles to Peer Leader roles
  • Work to develop personal relationships with students
  • Share your own experiences as a Peer Leader with students
  • Help to create a welcoming and supportive environment in class and work to develop personal relationships with students to more effectively support them
  • Hold office hours and correspond with students outside of class
  • Offer input and ideas from a student perspective to improve the course
  • Be proactive in supporting students and helping the instructional team offer a meaningful learning experience for Integrated Science 230 students

Internship

Peer Leaders enroll in INTEGSCI 320 (Internship; 1 credit)

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INTEGSCI 240: Service with Youth in STEM

Course instructor: Dr. Anna Bishop Courtier (anna.courtier@wisc.edu)

Description

Service with Youth in STEM (SWYIS) Peer Leaders facilitate student discussion and active learning in both lecture and lab components. Students enrolled in SWYIS learn how to work with community partners and lead after-school science clubs in the Madison area. Peer Leaders taking this 1-credit internship build upon previous work in the community to provide leadership, lead small discussion groups, and support after-school activity development and implementation.

Timeline

For Placement in… Complete These Steps
Spring 2024
  • Fall 2023: Apply
  • Spring 2024: Take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed) and serve as Peer Leader

Requirements 

Previous work in the community, preferably in INTEGSCI 240 Service with Youth in STEM.

Responsibilities

  • Complete Integrated Science 230 Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership before or during Peer Leader placement
  • Attend the lecture section and at least one lab section of the course
  • Complete weekly meetings with the course director and community liaison
  • Help connect SWYIS students with the logistics of working with community partners, including assisting with information on transportation to the after-school sites
  • In class, help facilitate student activities and discussion, and work to develop personal relationships with students
  • Outside of class, manage lab and activity materials, and correspond with students (in-person and electronically) to support after-school site activities
  • Lead a primary discussion or activity for one class period
  • Complete pre- and post-class discussions and reflections assigned by the course director

Optional Internship 

Peer Leaders may enroll in INTEGSCI 320 (Internship; 1 credit) in fall or spring semesters.

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Research Peer Leaders

 Directors: Nancy Ruggeri (nruggeri@wisc.edu) and Alexius Lampkin (lampkin@wisc.edu)

Description

NOTE: Not accepting applications for Spring 2024

Use your research experience and training to help undergraduates identify areas of research interest and potential research mentors as well as provide insight into navigating lab cultures. Research Peer Leaders share resources with students interested in engaging in or already engaged in research through workshops, panels, one-on-one meetings, and courses. These Peer Leaders will also work with WISCIENCE staff to develop new resources and workshops to meet the needs of undergraduate researchers. Through their various responsibilities, Research Peer Leaders will develop skills in public speaking, facilitation, active learning techniques, and more.

Timeline

For Placement in… Complete These Steps
Spring 2024

(full for Spring 2024)

  • Fall 2023: Apply (not accepting applications for Spring 2024)
  • Spring 2024: Take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed) and serve as Peer Leader

Requirements  

Must be engaged in undergraduate research for two or more semesters before serving in the position. In your application, be sure to describe your research experience as part of your response about the skills (qualifications/experiences) you will bring to the position.

Responsibilities

The Research Peer Leaders work as a team to accomplish the following. Once you are selected, you will have the opportunity to have input on which responsibilities you take on.

  • Complete Integrated Science 230 Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership before or during Peer Leader placement
  • Facilitate undergraduate research workshops and/or participate in panels on topics such as “Finding a Research Experience at UW-Madison”
  • Meet one-on-one with students who have questions about undergraduate research experiences
  • Develop new workshops and resources such as workshops and guides in support of undergraduate research
  • Be a Peer Leader in a WISCIENCE research course, with responsibilities such as attending weekly class meetings, building community among students, leading small group discussions, providing peer feedback, and sharing your research insights and experiences
  • Participate in regular Peer Leader meetings with the Research Mentor and Mentee Training Coordinator

Internship

Peer Leaders can choose to volunteer their time or enroll in INTEGSCI 320 (Internship; 1 credit) in fall or spring semesters. To receive internship credit, Peer Leaders must develop and implement one new resource or program each semester.

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STEM Immersion Peer Leader

Program Director: Keegan Buscaino (buscaino@wisc.edu)

Description

STEM Immersion Peer Leaders support the STEM Immersion program, which is an immersive learning community for students interested in science, technology, engineering, math, or medicine disciplines. STEM Immersion offers events and informal gatherings throughout the academic year designed to support the transition to college and persistence in the field. Programming focuses on building community among peers, finding yourself in STEM, and sharing resources that support your academic journey.

Timeline

For Placement in… Complete These Steps
Spring 2024
  • Fall 2023: Apply
  • Spring 2024: Take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed) and serve as Peer Leader

Requirements  

Majoring in a STEM field.

Responsibilities

  • Complete Integrated Science 230 Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership before or during Peer Leader placement
  • Develop and facilitate programming focused on building community among peers
  • Be a resource and/or know about the resources available to students that can support their academic journey
  • Support WISCIENCE by participating in resource fairs and events offered to STEM students
  • Maintain and support the STEM Immersion e-community canvas page
  • Collaborate with BioCommons student employees to plan and offer engagement opportunities and create a welcoming space at the BioCommons

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Summary of Application Timelines & Requirements

Position Upcoming Opportunities Timeline Requirements
INTEGSCI 100: Exploring Biology Peer Leader Fall 2024 Fall 2023: Apply

Spring 2024: Attend monthly meetings and take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed)

Fall 2024: Serve as Peer Leader

  • Must be available to attend weekly Exploring Biology class sessions on Mondays OR Wednesdays from 2:25–4:20 p.m.
  • Must be available Friday afternoons during the fall semester; time TBD
  • Majoring in the biosciences or a related field
Fall 2024 Fall 2023: Apply

Spring 2024: Take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed) and serve as Peer Leader

Previous experience in a first-year seminar, experience working in the community, or participation in INTEGSCI 140/240/375 Exploring Service in Science/Engaged Children in Science/Service with Youth in STEM.
Spring 2024 Fall 2023: Apply

Spring 2024: Serve as Peer Leader

Students must have completed Integrated Science 230 Exploring Discipline-Based Leadership with a grade of B or higher before applying for this position

Must be available to attend lecture and/or discussion (Lecture: Tuesdays 1:00–2:15 p.m.; Discussion: Thursdays 1:00–1:50 p.m.); please note availability in the application.

Preferred qualification: has held a peer leadership position at UW–Madison for one or more semesters

Spring 2024 Fall 2023: Apply

Spring 2024: Take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed) and serve as Peer Leader

Previous work in the community, preferably in INTEGSCI 240 Service with Youth in STEM
Not accepting applications in Spring 2024 Spring 2024: Take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed) and serve as Peer Leader
Must be engaged in undergraduate research for two or more semesters before serving in the position. In your application, be sure to describe your research experience as part of your response about the skills (qualifications/experiences) you will bring to the position.
Spring 2024 Fall 2023: Apply

Spring 2024: Take INTEGSCI 230 (if not already completed) and serve as Peer Leader

Majoring in a STEM field.

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Contact

Connect with WISCIENCE

Email: connect@wiscience.wisc.edu

Phone: 608-263-0598

Address:
445 Henry Mall
Madison, WI 53706