UniverCity Year Pepin County

With 7,400 residents and encompassing 249 square miles, Pepin County is one of the smallest counties in the State of Wisconsin. Despite its size, county leaders are pursuing a grand vision to improve resident health and quality of life, protect natural resources, and bolster the rural economy.

Pepin County is comprised of the City of Durand, the villages of Pepin and Stockholm, and eight towns. It is most well known for being the birthplace of Laura Ingalls Wilder and the setting for her beloved autobiographical children’s novel, “Little House in the Big Woods.” The county is also a top vacation destination, boasting year-round outdoor recreational opportunities.

Faculty, staff, and students working on UniverCity Year projects in Pepin County during the 2019-2020 academic year will focus on the county’s economic development and water quality efforts. Those interested in conducting independent research projects, teaching classes, or leading student work should contact Gavin Luter, UniverCity Alliance managing director.

Old Courthouse Museum on Washington Square in Durand, WI. Image courtesy of Pepin County.

Projects and courses

  1. “Business park development plans for Durand.” Civil & Environmental Engineering 578: Senior Capstone Design. Jan Kucher.
  2. “Community branding for Durand.” Independent research project. Kristin Runge.
  3. “Community economic analysis and business development strategies for Pepin County.” Independent research project. Steve Deller and Matt Kures.
  4. “Community revitalization plans for Durand.” Urban & Regional Planning 912: Planning Workshop. Alfonso Morales.
  5. “Economic development resources guidebook for Pepin County.” Urban & Regional Planning 912: Planning Workshop. Alfonso Morales.
  6. “Tourism marketing plans for Pepin County.” Journalism 445: Creative Campaign Messages. Doug McLeod.
  1. “Fall Creek watershed conservation plan.” Environmental Studies 972: Conservation Planning. Arlyne Johnson.
  2. “Feasibility study of composting manure in Pepin County.” Civil Engineering 421: Environmental Sustainability Engineering. Andrea Hicks.
  3. “Feasibility study of composting yard waste in Pepin County.” Civil Engineering 421: Environmental Sustainability Engineering. Andrea Hicks.
  4. “Health impact assessment of extreme weather in Pepin County.” Environmental Studies 560: Health Impact Assessment of Global Environmental Change. Jonathan Patz.
  5. “Sanitary treatment plan for Stockholm.” Civil & Environmental Engineering 578: Senior Capstone Design. Jan Kucher.
  6. “Storm water management plan for Stockholm.” Civil & Environmental Engineering 578: Senior Capstone Design. Jan Kucher.
  7. “Water quality data, privacy, and communication strategies.” Environmental Studies 950: Environmental Monitoring Seminar. Steve Ventura.
  8. “Wells and water quality.” Environmental Studies 600/Soil Science 499: Capstone. Steve Ventura and Nick Balster.