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News & Events

Meet Human Ecology’s May 2024 commencement flag bearer: Cuauhtemoc Guizar

Cuauhtemoc stands in front of a window, wearing a black T-shirt and smiling with his arms crossed.

Story by Sofia More x’26, UW–Madison student studying Community & Nonprofit Leadership.

The School of Human Ecology is proud to recognize Cuauhtemoc Guizar ‘24 as the school’s May 2024 commencement flag bearer. He was selected by the staff at the Advising & Career Center based on his numerous accomplishments in the classroom and community.

Guizar is a Mercile J. Lee Scholar from Milwaukee, double majoring in Community & Nonprofit Leadership and Political Science with certificates in Public Policy and Chican@ & Latin@ Studies. He is the current president of the Latine Student Union and a cabinet student leader to the UW–Madison Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs. Within Human Ecology, Guizar is an active member of The P.O.W.E.R. Collective and a former intern with the Center for Community & Nonprofit Studies (CommNS).

Three people smile and pose together behind a table.
Cuauhtemoc Guizar (left) with Carolina Sarmiento (center), associate professor of Civil Society & Community Studies, and Carolee Dodge Francis (right), department chair and professor of Civil Society & Community Studies at the Center for Community and Nonprofit Studies’ CommUnity Conference.

As a first-generation and Latino student, Guizar works to promote student success and inclusive excellence. His previous campus and community involvements include roles with the Associated Students of Madison, Multicultural Grant Council, Department of Political Science, UniverCity Alliance and Centro Hispano of Dane County. Most recently, Guizar was an economic policy intern with Dane County. Read more about his experiences in the following Q&A:

What does this honor of being Human Ecology’s flag bearer mean to you?

I am humbled to know that my work to promote student success, foster inclusive excellence and build community is valued. It is a reminder to Human Ecology and the greater university that the diverse interests and backgrounds of all students matter.

What is your favorite part of the School of Human Ecology?

My favorite part of the School of Human Ecology has been the staff, faculty and my peers. Human Ecology is a small community, so I got to know others well throughout my time here. I have had the opportunity to “grow up” in Human Ecology with my fellow students and become friends with several of them. My professors have all been helpful and genuinely support student success and learning.

Three men stand side by side in a formal picture in front of a fireplace. The state flag of Wisconsin stands adjacent to the them.
Cuauhtemoc Guizar (center) with Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers (left) and former Lieutenant Governor of Wisconsin Mandela Barnes.

What drew you to the Community & Nonprofit Leadership program?

I was a direct admit to the School of Human Ecology for the Community &
Nonprofit Leadership program. I was originally drawn to this major due to its focus on community-based change and approaching work through an equitable lens.

Upon entering college, I was unsure about what I wanted to do post-graduation, but I knew I wanted to explore my interests in addressing civil society issues. Additionally, the Civil Society & Community Studies Department provides a more intimate academic experience which was appealing at such a large university.

How have your personal experiences impacted your professional experiences?

Growing up, I have always had a strong interest in public policy, government and community-engaged work. My community and upbringing have been a large influence, and it has motivated me to explore and address civil society issues that have been relevant to my life. I hope that my professional experiences can allow me to pay it forward to my community in Milwaukee in the future.

Seven people, all dressed in suits and formal dresses with name tags, smile and pose together.
Cuauhtemoc Guizar (second from right) with Lori Reesor (far right), UW–Madison Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs, and members of Reesor’s Cabinet of Student Leaders during the UW–Madison’s 175th Anniversary Gala.

How has the School of Human Ecology prepared you to be successful in professional spaces?

The School of Human Ecology has prepared me to be successful as a professional as a result of its coursework. I have had the opportunity to engage in community-based research, strategic planning and evaluation, grant writing and more. Additionally, the CommNS, a center for community-engaged teaching, research and outreach that is housed within Human Ecology, provided me with my first internship in college. Human Ecology has challenged me to think creatively and lead equitably to make a positive social impact.

What are your post-graduation plans?

I will be working for a management consulting firm in its Chicago office. Before I start, I will be spending time with friends and family, along with traveling.

Cuauhtemoc Guizar is a 2024 recipient of the Rosalie Amlie Morton Award, which recognizes the achievement of outstanding students graduating from the School of Human Ecology. Selection is based on academic achievement, leadership, community involvement and personal accomplishments.

The Rosalie Amlie Morton Award was established by Dr. Jane M. Siegel and her late husband, Dr. Ben Siegel in honor of Jane’s mother, Rosalie, who graduated from the School of Human Ecology (then named the School of Home Economics) in 1928.