In honor of national student worker week, we’re proud to present CUW’s 2023-24 Student Workers of the Year!

The bottom line is, life on our beautiful campus just wouldn’t be the same without so many dedicated, hard-working student employees. We count on their help for everything from food service, to worship activities, to assisting in many essential offices. If you can think of a job to do on campus, chances are there’s a student helping out!

“We are just so blessed and thankful to have so many wonderful student workers on campus,” said Cheryl Weber, human resources training and development specialist. “They cheer us up with their positivity, inspire us with their faith, make our lives easier with their hard work, and make us all proud each and every day.”

Each year we choose four of the best of the best for this award. Students are nominated by faculty and staff from from than 800 student workers, based on the following criteria:

  • Exemplifies a strong, Christ-like character
  • Shows enthusiasm, dedication, initiative, and reliability in service to their department
  • Performs excellent work
  • Willingly goes above and beyond expectations
  • Has a mind-set of service to others

Congratulations to this year’s winners (shown below with their gift bag of prizes)! Thank you for making so many things on our campus run more smoothly, efficiently, and cheerfully.

Rebekah Milbrath (’25) | Freeville, New York

Campus Ministry Assistant

Major: Director of Church Ministries, Theology

Nominated by Steve Smith:

“Rebekah is an absolute gem.  In Campus Ministry, we have often had great student workers. Rebekah is at the top. She does everything with a smile and in a Christian and pleasant way. In a year where our ministry staff has been depleted (with only Pastor Smith on staff now), Rebekah has stepped up to be almost like professional staff.  She is as reliable as could be and does everything with excellence.  Her efficiency shines every day in getting so much done.

“Rebekah often just anticipates issues or things to be done and will do them. On days that I am so busy that I’m barely in my office, she needs little or no direction. She handles all of our van and bus reservations and troubleshoots problems regularly. She works well with everyone. She is the friendly face I’d hope for to greet drop-in traffic and so much more. She enables our ministry to flourish, even in a time of less staff. Picking up t-shirts (to save shipping costs), receiving and tracking student applications and money for trips, helping people with a myriad of issues, and serving the needs of many campus ministries, are just a few ways Rebekah has blessed us all. She is the dream student worker and a blessing to me and our campus!”

Jacob Carlson (’24) | Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Major: Business Communication

Nominated by Cassandra Chmielewski:

“Jacob started in the Admissions Office this past summer as our full-time summer tour guide. He quickly learned the tour route, office tasks, and assimilated to our work. He has continued throughout the academic year and has been such a positive addition to our team. He is always willing to help in any way necessary and often does so without waiting for a request to be made. Jacob is a strong leader in our office and sets an example for the high level of customer service and quality of work that is expected in our office. He effortlessly connects well with prospective families and his peers alike making him a great nominee for this recognition.

“Beginning in the fall, Jacob accepted the position as our Events & Visits Intern and has transformed our work in the office. Jacob has taken over the day-to-day scheduling of appointments and texting every touring prospective student the day before their visit with a final reminder and details. In addition to this work, he also has overseen the planning and implementation for our Twilight Tours as well as most recently a Taste of Concordia event. He has taken on the planning and scheduling for these events with ease, asking questions when appropriate.

“Lastly, his main task, and for what has been the most significant help, is his work with group visits. Jacob serves as the primary contact for groups and manages the scheduling and coordinating for each visit. Since we see 30+ groups a year, having Jacob dedicated to the constant communication and follow-up with the group leaders has significantly helped our office. He tackles each task and project with a high level of professionality and I know that he can be entrusted with any task given. All while holding this internship, Jacob still tours prospective families weekly, ensuring our guests always have a positive experience. Jacob is a phenomenal student and student worker who truly exemplifies our Concordia mission throughout everything he does.”

Kalleigh Thorne (’24) | Bonduel, Wisconsin

Financial Aid Student Worker

Major: Sport and Entertainment Business

Nominated by Vicki Waschow:

“Kalleigh continuously goes above and beyond for not only the FA team but the entire One Stop Shop.  She is the hardest working, most thoughtful, generous student worker that I have ever had the pleasure to work with in the 20 years that I have been at CUW.  I have never had a student worker who deserves to be recognized more than Kalleigh.  She even brings treats in for the counselors!

“Kalleigh regularly comes in to the office or will call  on days that she is not scheduled to work to ensure that we have coverage or to make sure that projects were done.  When Kalleigh finds a better/faster way to do a project or process, she will make sure that it is OK with FA and then will implement the change(s) and update the FA “how to” binder and train all the other student workers.  When all the work is done, Kalleigh will check with all counselors to see if there is anything she can do to assist them.  Kalleigh has worked in our office during the summer while also doing two internships. Kalleigh not only excels in her job but has learned some of the Academic Advisor student workers information so that she can assist that office when they do not have student worker coverage.

Maddie Taubenheim | Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin

Lead Student Ambassador

Major: Marketing (in Business Scholars program)

Nominated by Lydia Nuechterlein:

“Maddie is often found in our office working on numerous projects as a Lead Student Ambassador. Along with the typical Student Ambassador tasks (such as touring families, prepping materials, and answering/directing calls for the University) she gives many of our VIP tours to guests of our CUW President, Board of Regents members, or our international partners. They always come back with glowing reviews of their wonderful tour experience with Maddie. She is more than happy to help boost a prospective student’s CUW experience and often meets with students if they have an interest in playing for our Women’s Basketball Team.

“Maddie has also taken over our social media platforms and creates fun/engaging content for prospective CUW students to enjoy. Maddie runs our Tiktok account (@cuwisconsin), our Instagram account (@cuwadmissions), and our Spotify account (@Concordia University Wisconsin Admissions). She posts multiple times a week and strategically tracks engagement information so our posts reach the maximum amount of people.

“She has created multiple “viral” TikToks, with a few videos reaching 3.6 million views and half a million likes. Those TikTok videos mentioned above are also posted on our Instagram and they have received upwards of half a million views.”

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Concordia University Wisconsin is a Lutheran higher education community committed to helping students develop in mind, body, and spirit for service to Christ in the Church and the world. To learn more about CUW, click the link below.