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Feb 2, 201711:02 AMOpen Mic

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UW Colleges are essential component of Wisconsin Idea, workforce development

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State investment in the UW System supports Wisconsin’s public-education infrastructure, making it possible for the UW Colleges to support our state’s civic, economic, and social foundation. The partnership that the UW Colleges have with their host counties and municipalities further strengthens that foundation at the local level.

The UW Colleges are an essential component of the UW System, which is essential to Wisconsin’s ability to remain culturally, economically, and socially strong. Through the Wisconsin Idea, the UW moves our state forward. Strong public support of the University of Wisconsin System is essential to the success of the UW Colleges, which are emblematic of the Wisconsin Idea and which help build strong social capital.

As our state moves into a new budget cycle, Wisconsin residents will face critical questions of how best to use our state’s fiscal resources. How will we fund initiatives to ensure that our state remains a vital place to live, work, and raise families? Where does publicly funded education — from K–12 through the baccalaureate degree and beyond — fit in this picture of strengthening our social capital, of preparing civically-minded citizens, of cultivating tomorrow’s leaders? As our elected officials grapple with these questions, they will look to us, their constituents, for input.

Dr. Charles E. Clark is regional executive officer and dean for the SW Region UW Colleges comprised of UW–Baraboo/Sauk County, UW–Richland, and UW–Rock County.

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