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Ryan Odeen

Ryan Odeen is a student at UW-River Falls.

May 4, 2016

A cap and gown doesn’t necessarily mean graduation for some at UWRF

When it comes time to apply for graduation, UW-River Falls students sometimes run into roadblocks that do not necessarily hold them back from participating in the commencement ceremony, but when they shake the chancellor’s hand, there is no degree handed out.

April 14, 2016

Restorative justice center offers alternative to low-level offenders

Upon being arrested and charged with a low-level offense or petty misdemeanor, someone accused of a crime may face uncertainty about what will happen in the court system. Instead of thinking in traditional terms of justice, the St. Croix Valley Restorative Justice Center in River Falls offers a different approach.

April 6, 2016

St. Croix projected to remain one of state’s fastest-growing counties

Over the next two decades, St. Croix County will continue to be one of the fastest-growing counties in the state of Wisconsin, according to population projections done by UW-Madison Applied Population Laboratory for the Wisconsin Department of Administration.

March 30, 2016

Wisconsin voters to see plenty of anti-Trump ads as primary looms

Wisconsin voters should expect a good amount of attack ads against Republican candidate and billionaire Donald Trump during the next week as the April 5 state presidential primary election draws near, according to political observers.

March 10, 2016

Campus computer experts suggest ways to battle phishing, malware

Members of the UW-River Falls campus community needs to be more aware and educated about phishing and scam attempts that often get trafficked through email, according to the Department of Technology Services (DoTS).

March 2, 2016

UWRF students face mandatory awareness training about sexual assault

Starting this fall, incoming freshman and returning students at UW-River Falls will have to complete an online course about sexual assault and harassment before they can register for classes.

February 4, 2016

Controversial university conceal-carry bill not likely to pass this session

A controversial bill that would allow concealed weapons to be carried in university buildings most likely will not pass this legislative session, says the Republican representative who proposed it. But first-term State Rep. Jesse Kremer (R-Kewaskum) said that if he is re-elected in November, he will re-introduce the legislation. Kremer introduced Assembly Bill 480 in November.

December 2, 2015

UW students, employees can anonymously report fraud, waste, misconduct

A website and hotline was launched this summer by the UW System that provides students, staff and faculty an anonymous way to report fraud, waste and a variety of other offenses and misconduct.

November 18, 2015

Survey suggests UWRF students today are less likely to drink and drive

UW-River Falls students today are less likely to drink and drive than those who attended the school 15 years ago, according to alcohol and other drug use data gathered from a 2012 survey. The same survey was given to students who attended UWRF in 2000.

November 12, 2015

Despite popular myth, alcohol will not stave off the cold

Fall is coming to an end and colder temperatures are starting to set in. Health officials and practitioners warn that harsher weather only further complicates staying safe while drinking.

November 12, 2015

‘Safe ride’ program stems from death last spring

The Student Senate at UW-River Falls recently approved a pilot program to provide students a free ride home anywhere in River Falls from Thursday to Saturday nights, but some opponents say the service will encourage students to drink.

The program, which will cost $5,400, would offer a free ride home to UW-River Falls students who present a valid student ID. The program would extend River Falls Taxi Service hours from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m., Thursday through Saturday, starting in November and would run for 15 weeks.

Student Senate President Christopher Morgan said the program did not get started in order to promote drinking.

“It simply didn’t,” he said.

He said the need for the program was first brought about after hearing stories surrounding the death of Robert “Bobby” Sontag, a 20-year-old dairy science major who was found dead May 4 in the Kinnickinnic River. He last had been seen in downtown River Falls after a night of drinking and had become separated from a friend as he walked home.

“We used a tragedy from last year, where someone died from unsafe drinking,” Morgan said. “That’s what really fostered this program. But the larger discussion at hand was how do we use this tragedy to promote student safety as a whole.”

UWRF Police Chief Karl Fleury said this is more than just a “sober cab” for students. It gives students access to a ride when they did not have one before the program.

“Unfortunately, we get those nights that dip well below zero,” Fleury said. “They might find themselves at a friend’s house, activity, or an event off campus where they may have walked in the past. This gives them opportunity to make that phone call and have a ride back to campus.”

Morgan said students should use this program whenever they feel unsafe getting home at night, and also hopes students will use this instead of deciding to drive after they have been drinking.

“The sole purpose of the program was to get students out of unsafe situations, back into wherever they live at night,” Morgan said.

“I think it has merit to take a look at it, to go ahead and see if it’s going to work,” Fleury said. “I think with the fact that it’s a pilot program, they will be able to gather more data.”

Morgan said that during the 15 weeks that the service will run, Student Senate will extensively evaluate the effectiveness of the program looking at things like ridership, where most of the calls are coming from, and where the high traffic areas are going to be. After those 15 weeks are completed, Student Senate will re-evaluate the need for the program.

Fleury said that there are not a lot of ways in which students can get around as it is right now, citing a lack of public transportation in River Falls.

“We’re not a large city that has a bus service or multiple taxi services that are available for (students),” Fleury said. “Our services are not as extensive as that.”

The program not only would provide another method of transportation for students, but offer it at no cost to them.

Morgan said he is proud of the fact the allocation passed by a supermajority, or a two-thirds vote across the Senate.

“I know the majority of student body knows that this isn’t an enabler of drinking,” he said. “It’s simply a way to get students out of harm’s way in the middle of winter at night.”

October 23, 2015

Bike registration program starts second year at UWRF

The bicycle registration program at UW-River Falls is in its second year of operation and it has not been without its snags. When the program first started last year, UWRF Police turned to Residence Life to help spread the word and register bikes.