Throughout the years, UW-Milwaukee has seen many notable students. In October, the Alumni Association Awards were held at Discovery World, honoring notable past students who are succeeding outside of the classroom. More than 20 UWM alums were awarded because of their professional achievements, civic involvement, and partnerships with the university.
Mark Sabljak is a Milwaukee native, graduating from PIUS XI High School. He continued his education at Marquette University and earned his B.A. in Journalism. Sabljak came to UW-Milwaukee for his graduate program in Communications the early 1980s. Today Sabljak is Publisher of the Milwaukee Business Journal.
How was your college experience?
Sabljak: Graduate experiences are very different than undergrad….I really juggled a growing family, full time job and my studies, so very little fun or friends but a rich experience in learning.
What stands out to you about UWM?
Sabljak: I was amazed at the talent on campus….from faculty, to student organizations, to the fabulous library. For someone who loved learning, UWM was a gold mine.
How has UWM influenced your career?
Sabljak: I was well into my career when I came to UWM, so the choice was very intentional. I looked at my studies as a way to distance myself from others I may have been competing with for promotions. Good news, I think it helped.
Do you have any advice for the current students?
Sabljak: Go to every class. No point in paying tuition if you don’t go to class. Ask questions. If you don’t get it, raise your hand. If you still don’t get it, get a tutor. Most important, if you have a clear idea of what you want to do when you graduate — GET AN INTERNSHIP. You have to separate yourself from the herd, so to speak, and internships do that.
Was there a specific professor who challenged you?
Sabljak: Dr. Kanti Prasad taught several marketing classes I took and found him a huge influence. We still interact as he is again the interim dean of the Lubar School. He’s a great man.
What was your favorite campus hangout spot?
Sabljak: When I had a few moments on campus, I hung out at a quiet spot in the Union.
What do you love about Milwaukee?
Sabljak: Milwaukee is the city I have lived in all but a year in my life — and I have done it intentionally. It is a big enough city where relationships are critical. It is a city with huge challenges but lots of good people working on them. We have all the amenities we need, and if we need to, can pop to Chicago or on a plane and go further
What was your alumni award for?
Sabljak: Community service. I have been highly involved in education reform efforts including serving on the UWM School of Education board of visitors, as well as Greater Milwaukee Committee education committee co-chair, and executive committee on Milwaukee Succeeds.