Aspiring Educators awarded grant, help children in need

Written by Kristie Reynolds on Tue, 12/20/2022 - 08:52 |
Aspiring Educators
Aspiring Educators

The University of Wisconsin-Platteville Aspiring Educators was recently awarded a grant by the National Education Association to purchase outdoor gear, such as coats, snow pants, hats and mittens, for children in need in the Platteville School District.

“This is the first grant I have ever applied for,” said Ryan Ladd-Winders, president of UW-Platteville Aspiring Educators. “I was beyond excited that we were awarded the grant, because we are going to be able to help the students of the area stay warm.”

Ladd-Winders, a senior technology education major from Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, first learned of the grant from state liaison Nathan Ugoretz and said that deciding what to do was a natural choice.

“By being in schools, Aspiring Educators sees the community first-hand, and by speaking with community members, was able to find out that many students are in need of winter gear,” said Dr. Doug Adams, the faculty advisor for Aspiring Educators. “I can’t speak highly enough of this organization. Aspiring Educators are very self-motivated, driven to do great work and very enthusiastic. That’s how student-led organizations should be.”

Adams believes that another part of what makes the organization so successful is how active it is, hosting events to try to get everyone in the School of Education involved. Adams noted they have a great track record of doing events and doing them well and emphasized that if they hadn’t been in the schools, they wouldn’t have seen this need.

“As a leader on campus, I can make a real, lasting change in the lives of students in the local area, which will make me a better educator,” said Ladd-Winders. “I’ve developed relationships with the Wisconsin Education Association Council and the National Education Association. I think this may give me a chance to write more grants to help students.”

Ladd-Winders is currently writing another CREATE grant for the spring semester.

“Ryan doesn’t give himself enough credit. He works very hard and was proactive in writing this grant,” said Adams. “He is involved at a state and national level, leveraged his position and was savvy in contacting the right people to help him with the grant.”

According to their webpage, the goal of UW-Platteville Aspiring Educators is to send quality teachers into public schools by improving teacher education, protecting student rights, influencing government and working towards human relations.