Wanted: Stories of UW public engagement

As a campus community, we are well aware that UW-Madison puts the Wisconsin Idea into practice every day. To help us strengthen our current public engagement activities and to tell this story beyond campus, an extensive database, The Wisconsin Idea in Action, was created to show the extent to which our teaching, research, clinical and public engagement activities benefit the state.

In the past year, this Wisconsin Idea database has allowed us to:

  • Share county-by-county reports with each state legislator, which has received a strong positive response, and features examples of UW-Madison activities that serve their districts
  • Place targeted news releases published in newspapers throughout Wisconsin showcasing how UW-Madison benefits local citizens, businesses and organizations
  • Generate a series of Wisconsin Idea Profiles ( which, through publication in state newspapers and via a partnership with the Wisconsin Counties Association, has reached thousands of citizens and local government leaders
  • Fund the development of new and critically needed math and science certificate programs in partnership with K-12 educational institutions throughout the state for practicing middle school teachers.

To maintain these productive efforts, we must constantly refresh the database with new examples of the Wisconsin Idea in action. Hence, we are asking today that you take a few minutes to tell us about how you put the Wisconsin Idea into practice.

The process is easy to accomplish: open the Wisconsin Idea Submission Form, type in a 100-word description of your program, project or partnership, answer a few quick questions and click submit. If you’re not sure what to include, try browsing the database listings to get an idea.

If your work is already listed in The Wisconsin Idea in Action, thank you and please feel free to update your records or contribute new examples. If you will be submitting something for the first time and have any questions, please contact Wisconsin Idea Project Co-coordinator Bill Graf ( (265-0476). Thank you in advance for joining your colleagues and contributing to the success of this venture.