UW-Platteville Richland receives funding from We Energies Foundation to support expanding outreach to underserved communities

Richland Center Campus

The $5,000 grant will support new programs from UW-Platteville’s Continuing Education Institute (CEI) helping high school students connect with the campus, and with local business and industry.  

UW-Platteville Richland will be expanding three of its new Professional Pathways programs, thanks to a new grant from the We Energies Foundation. The $5,000 grant, all targeted for the UW-Platteville Richland’s service area, will fund outreach efforts for programs for area high school students, particularly in traditionally underserved communities working toward enrolling in college, according to Rebecca Powell, continuing and strategic program manager with UW-Platteville Richland.  

“We Energies’ gracious grant will help us grow these new programs, and serve the Richland County area’s underserved families,” said Powell.  

The grant will fund scholarships and other outreach for the High School Online Scholars Academy, which offers additional coursework and support for college readiness; for the Mentoring program with local industry leaders, which matches students with role models and forges deep connections; and for the new “Making the Case for College” webinar series, which presents UW-Platteville faculty and staff in an opportunity to share their programs and their excitement with potential students.    

Kerie Wedige, executive director of the Continuing Education Institute at UW-Platteville, applauded the support from We Energies for the programs, saying it showed the potential CEI has to link students all across the service area to the campus, and to what UW-Platteville, or any higher education can offer any student.

“We’ve been innovating and expanding our programs for high school students, and being able to offer those programs more widely in the areas surrounding the Richland campus will reinforce what a resource the Richland campus can be,” added Wedige.   

These programs are just a start of the Richland branch campus’ renewed overall effort to connect with underserved populations in and around Richland County, according to Melanie Platt-Gibson, the director of community outreach for UW-Platteville’s two branch campuses in Richland Center and Baraboo.  

“Building strong communities takes these types of partnerships between education and industry, and we appreciate We Energies’ support of the students we hope to serve. We’re working hard to make new and improved connections with people through the Richland campus, and partnering with We Energies to bring those efforts forward will be a big help,” Platt-Gibson said.  

The We Energies Foundation supports initiatives for community and neighborhood development, health and human services, arts and culture, education and environment.   

More information on all the CEI programs for high school students is at https://www.uwplatt.edu/youth-programs