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University Diplomas Misspell ‘Wisconsin’

December 10, 1988

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) _ The University of Wisconsin presented nearly 4,000 diplomas to graduates in May, but it took six months for anyone to notice that the name of the state was misspelled.

″It’s amazing that something like this could happen,″ said Rosa Johnson, supervisor of degree summary and verification at the registrar’s office on the university’s Madison campus. ″It’s disbelief.″

The error is in the lower right-hand corner of the diploma under the signature of UW-Madison Chancellor Donna Shalala.

It reads: ″Chancellor, University of Wisconson-Madison.″

″A student noticed it in mid-November,″ Johnson said, the Green Bay Press-Gazette reported Saturday. ″We do proofread the diplomas, but we concentrate on the name and the degree. We usually consider that the standard information is correct. It just didn’t occur to us that this could happen.″

Josten Diploma Service in Red Wing, Minn., where the diplomas were produced, will pay for new replacement diplomas, Johnson said.

A spokesman at Josten’s said the person who had information about how the error was made would not be available for comment until Monday.

Johnson said she had been told an incorrect plate was made but does not know how many were printed incorrectly.

″We awarded 3,133 undergraduate degrees and 764 master’s diplomas in May,″ Johnson said. ″But we don’t know how many were incorrect because they used several plates. So we ordered a complete new set and will have them if anyone discovers the mistake and wants it corrected.

″But this is not being done at the expense of the state of Wisconsin. It will cost the company a pretty penny.″

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