‘Town-Gown’ relationship is roundtable discussion April 13 April 3, 2023 Community collaboration will be discussed during a “Town-Gown Relationships” forum April 13 at the Portage County Library. A roundtable discussion on “Town-Gown Relationships in Stevens Point” will explore ways higher education and local institutions and residents can build a better community together. The event will be held Thursday, April 13, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in the Portage County Public Library Pinery Room. Sponsored by the Center for the Small City at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, this in-person only event is free and open to the public. Learn more here. “When universities and their cities align priorities and build collaborative relations, it bodes well for a community,” said Ismaila Odogba, co-director of the UWSP Center for the Small City and professor of geography/geology. “The benefits of such joint ventures include maximized capital and financial resources, the attraction and retention of a talented workforce, enhanced economic development and improved quality of life.” Panelists include Thomas Gibson, UW-Stevens Point chancellor; Mike Wiza, Stevens Point mayor; Benjamin Nusz, Mid-State Technical College-Stevens Point dean; Michael Witte, Portage County Business Council President and CEO; Kristi Roth, School of Education professor and shared governance chair, UWSP; and Ryan Kernosky, Stevens Point Community Development/Redevelopment Authority director. The discussion will be moderated by Joshua Hagen, College of Letters and Science dean at UW-Stevens Point. “While the relationship between universities and cities is critical in all cities, it is heightened in small cities, hence the interest of UWSP’s Center for the Small City,” said Ed Miller, center co-chair and political science professor emeritus. “Town-gown relations is an important continuing topic made especially timely for us with UW-Stevens Point’s merger with campuses in Marshfield and Wausau,” Miller added. Similar roundtables are being planned for Wausau and Marshfield as well.