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Wisconsin Alumni Association gives $250,000 to Great People Scholarship Campaign

May 6, 2010

The Wisconsin Alumni Association (WAA) has given $250,000 to the University of Wisconsin–Madison’s Great People Scholarship Campaign to provide more students need-based financial aid on their path to becoming alumni.

The $250,000 gift is made possible through sales of The Red Shirt, a limited line of T-shirts developed by WAA to help fund scholarships and programming for alumni and students.

“We are absolutely delighted to be able to make this gift from proceeds of sales of The Red Shirt,” said WAA’s President and CEO Paula Bonner MS’78. “Wisconsin alumni are proof of the power of a UW education. It’s our great pleasure to invest in today’s students and the future of our alma mater by supporting the Chancellor’s priority to increase need-based financial aid.”

The Executive Committee of WAA’s Board of Directors unanimously approved the gift of $25,000 per year for five years from WAA, to be matched with funds from the UW Foundation. Bonner and WAA Board President Pete Christianson (’71, JD’77) presented Chancellor Biddy Martin (Ph.D’85) with a check for the gift on April 23 at its meeting during Alumni Weekend.

“This gift from the Wisconsin Alumni Association will help transform the lives of many young people who seek an education here at UW–Madison,” says Martin. “Need-based financial aid for students is our university’s highest priority, and I’m so grateful for this support from our partners at our alumni association and the alumni it represents.”

The Great People Scholarship Campaign is targeted toward raising funds for need-based financial aid. Its goal is to provide increased access and affordability to undergraduate students and improve the quality of the undergraduate experience at UW–Madison.

In alignment with this top priority of the university, WAA’s The Red Shirt program allows all Badgers to give back to the UW community in a fun showing of support, unity and Wisconsin spirit.

Proceeds from the sales of The Red Shirt, now entering its third year, contribute to the more than $550,000 already awarded by WAA every year through scholarship programs at the corporate level and through alumni chapters around the world.

“This generous gift from WAA will make it possible for us to provide need-based aid to nearly 25 deserving students in the first year alone,” says Susan Fischer, UW–Madison’s director of financial aid. “A gift of this size really makes a difference, and students will know that while they’re on campus, they have the support of their fellow Badger alumni.”

This year, WAA’s design of The Red Shirt, Second Edition, celebrated 100 years of the song “On, Wisconsin” and was used as the season’s stadium shirt, sold at Bucky’s Locker Room, Insignia, Wisconsin Active Sportswear and Name of the Game.