Student Voice


July 12, 2024

Scholarship established after death of elementary education adviser

February 14, 2022

Michael Sean Martin, the senior coordinator of Educator Preparation Program Student Services at UW-River Falls, died Jan. 28 at the age of 53.

Michael Sean Martin
Michael Sean Martin

Martin was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, to the late Dr. Carroll and Marilyn Martin on Feb. 1, 1968. He married Rory Wittmus on Sept. 30, 1995, in Chilton, Wisconsin, and together they had three daughters. A dedicated and loving family man, Martin grew to love the sport of volleyball as he supported his daughters, all three of whom played throughout their K-12 education. Martin, an avid gamer, enjoyed playing a variety of games and was known to the gaming community as Thraxzz.

He graduated from St. Catherine’s High School in Racine, Wisconsin in 1986. Martin earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1991 and a master’s in counseling in 1993, both from UW-Whitewater. He started off at the UW-Marathon County as a hall director in 1994.

Martin started his career at UWRF as the advisor for the Elementary Education Program in 1997. Over his 25 years of service, Martin touched the lives of many students and held several responsibilities, including the TEACH learning community advisor, the elementary education teacher advisor, the admission to teacher education preparation program coordinator, and the data program manager and teacher licensing officer. In 2016, Martin’s dedication to his work was acknowledged when he was the recipient of the Academic Staff Excellence Award from the UW Board of Regents, the most prestigious award for a member of his field.

Martin is survived by his wife, Rory; three daughters Kaleigh, Makenna and Kennadi; sisters Michelle (Jason Rownd) Martin and Meghan (Tim Gifford) Martin; brothers Matthew and Mitchel; and aunt Jane Peterson. He is preceded in death by his parents Dr. Caroll and Marilyn Martin.

The UWRF foundation has established the Michael Martin Memorial Scholarship Fund in his honor. Donations to the fund can be made online at