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UW-Madison receives Osher Foundation gift for returning adult student scholarships

January 8, 2008

The Bernard Osher Foundation has announced a grant of $1 million to the University of Wisconsin–Madison to endow scholarships for returning adult students.

The Osher Reentry Scholarship Program benefits students — ideally aged 25-50 — whose collegiate studies at a four-year campus were interrupted by circumstances beyond their control and who now want to resume their university studies.

"We’re enormously grateful that the Osher Foundation has chosen UW–Madison to receive this level of support," says Katy Duren, assistant dean of the UW–Madison Division of Continuing Studies, which will administer the scholarship. "Though they’re often overlooked, returning adult students bring a tremendous vibrancy and diversity to our campus. They work very hard to overcome daunting obstacles, and it’s wonderful to have their efforts finally rewarded in this major way."

Qualified students may include part-time and full-time students, both newly matriculating and currently enrolled at the institution receiving the funds. Students must be able to demonstrate financial need and should demonstrate high academic potential.

Founded in 1977, the Bernard Osher Foundation provides scholarships to colleges and universities across the U.S., with special attention to reentry students. The foundation especially seeks to recognize the commitment, efforts and financial hardships of reentry working adults as they balance their family, work and school responsibilities to achieve their educational goals. The foundation also supports a growing network of lifelong-learning programs at more than 100 institutions — including UW–Madison, where an Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (UW-OLLI) was established in 2005.

For more information contact Duren at or (608) 263-5114.