Alumni Spotlight: Joseph Halaas ’03

Joseph is a Denison alumni who graduated in 2003 with a Bachelor’s Degree in French and Language and Literature. Following his graduation from Denison, he attended University of Wisconsin-Madison and achieved a Master’s Degree in French studies with a concentration in international education.

Joseph traveled around Europe for some time, teaching both French and English to children of various ages. He worked for TASIS-Switzerland, an American boarding school set on setting its students up for successful careers.

Joseph continued exploring his interest in education. He got a job with his alma mater, University of Wisconsin-Madison, working his way through several positions with the university. From starting as an International Admissions Counselor to working as the Director of International Programs in the Wisconsin School of Business to finally settling down in his current role as the Assistant Director at the UW Madison Arboretum, Joseph certainly knows his way around employment in higher education.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum is used by students, faculty, and researchers alike to study ecological restoration. At the University of Wisconsin-Madison Arboretum, Joseph oversees a number of administrative functions (e.g. fiscal management, human resources, research administration) to support the Arboretum’s operations.

Joseph has navigated multiple workplaces as a member of the LGBTQ+ community. His advice to Denison LGBTQ+ students: “Many companies and professional organizations have affinity groups for LGBTQ+ people. Finding mentors, colleagues, and friends in these networks can be a great way to learn more about your field as you navigate a new job. In my experience, engaging in these spaces has led to meaningful professional contacts as well as personal friends!”

Connect with Joseph on LinkedIn

By Fiona Schultz
Fiona Schultz Student Assistant & Peer Fellow: Nonprofit, Education & Government