Annette Blanchette graduated from UW Oshkosh in 1960 with a BS in English. She started working at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in 1965 in the Instructional Materials Center and later became a student status examiner to aid elementary education majors in course planning and selection. Annette retired from the University in 1998 after 33 years of service. When she retired, Annette received the UW-River Falls Chancellor’s Recognition Award to Classified Staff. She passed away in 2015.
Annette created several scholarships for UW Oshkosh students, wanting to give back to others after a state-funded grant allowed her to attend the University:
- Irene L. Blanchette Nursing Award – established in 2002 in memory of her mother, who was unable to realize her dream of becoming a nurse. She wanted to help provide other students the opportunity her mother never had.
- Irene Blanchette Sophomore Achievement Award – established in 2000 in memory of her mother to support students majoring in elementary education.
- Dr. Roy and Geraldene Dixon-Robinson Scholarship – established in 1996 in memory of Roy Dixon-Robinson, faculty emeritus in psychology, who passed away on March 24, 1995. Roy earned his undergraduate degree from Wayne State University in Detroit, then spent three and a half years in the Canadian Army. He returned to Wayne State University for a master’s degree and a teaching position. He earned a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. After teaching at the University of Wisconsin Madison for four years, he joined the UW Oshkosh department of psychology in September 1960. Following his retirement in 1985, he returned to the University and taught part-time until 1990. His avocation was music, in particular the pipe organ, and he played in churches in Detroit, Madison, and Oshkosh. He spent 21 years as organist’choirmaster at Trinity Episcopal Church in Oshkosh.
- Nevin James Scholarship – established in 1970 in honor of Professor Nevin James with the help of other former students, friends, colleagues, and family of Professor James. He served UW Oshkosh for 44 years, including 23 years as chairman of the Department of English, until his retirement in 1967.
- Nevin James Communication Fund – established in 2010 in memory of Professor Nevin James and in honor of Annette’s Golden Titan 50th reunion, she wanted this fund to help keep the spirit of debate alive in our classrooms and communities and to promote good public speaking techniques. Though Professor James spent most of his career teaching English, Annette fondly remembered that Professor James most loved debate and argumentation. He would bring up controversial issues and defend them with the hope that his students would take sides and defend their positions with him or other class members.