UW-Green Bay will host its 12th annual Phuture Phoenix Days Tuesday, Oct. 13 and Thursday, Oct. 15, welcoming nearly 1,400 area fifth-graders who will tour campus and explore life as potential college students.
UW-Green Bay’s signature Phuture Phoenix program partners with schools that have high percentages of students from low-income families and encourages students to graduate from high school and pursue a college education.
The program has hosted a total of 17,241 fifth grade students since it began in 2003. To help support the large number of participants, there will be more than 250 UW-Green Bay students serving as role models and group leaders for the day and at least 120 faculty and staff members participating.
This year’s campus visit intends to offer the visiting fifth-graders a varied look at the college experience, introducing them to multiple aspects of campus life. Every fifth-grader and their UWGB mentors will visit a lecture, a residence hall, the Kress Events Center, and enjoy a meal in the Weidner Center or the University Union’s Phoenix Room. Additionally, numerous UW-Green Bay students and faculty members have planned special, large-group activities for students to interact with peers from their own and other participating schools. A few of these activities include exploration of the Cofrin Library archives, interactive improvisational games, a “slime laboratory,” printmaking, and “College 101” presentations touching upon financial aid, admissions, advising and social work.
Phuture Phoenix Day is a coordinated effort to inspire academic success and alert children to educational opportunities available to them. Phuture Phoenix programming helps prepare elementary school students for college early, says Jenny Woldt, a fifth-grade teacher at Jefferson Elementary School and fan of the program.
“You have to start in kindergarten, get it in their brain that they are college bound no matter where they come from, and that they just need to work hard in school and work hard in their community, and they can get there,” Woldt says.
New to the Tuesday field trip this year are expanded opportunities for fifth-graders to explore the Kress Events Center and UW-Green Bay’s Office of Residence Life, getting a feel for fitness and recreational options and on-campus housing.
“The Office of Residence Life is happy to be able to participate in the Phuture Phoenix program, as it’s never too early to introduce the concept of attending college,” says UW-Green Bay Director of Residence Life, Gail Sims-Aubert. “It’s so important that today’s youth understand going to college means they will be a part of a vibrant educational experience both inside and outside the classroom. This program is an outstanding opportunity to provide a sneak peak of life on campus.”
Brent Tavis, Assistant Athletics Director for Events and Operations, agrees, adding, “The Kress Events Center is very excited to be able to host the Phuture Phoenix participants every year. It’s an excellent experience for the participants and for the Kress. We get to expose kids to a great atmosphere of sports, fitness, and activities that we hope will make their time here at UW-Green Bay more memorable.”
For more information about Phuture Phoenix.