Phuture Phoenix will have twin at UW-Eau Claire

The Phuture Phoenix program at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay will soon have a twin.

Gov. Jim Doyle announced Monday, June 8, that the UW-Eau Claire has been selected as the recipient of new funding to expand pre-college awareness programs on its campus.

Blugold Beginnings, will replicate UW-Green Bay’s successful Phuture Phoenix program to encourage young at-risk students to pursue higher education.

“UW-Eau Claire is a wonderful choice to replicate UW-Green Bay’s Phuture Phoenix,” said Phuture Phoenix Director Kim Desotell. “Eau Claire’s community faces many of the same challenges we see in our community. Integrating the Phuture Phoenix model will allow for program expansion, thus, providing an opportunity to serve additional at-risk, under-served and first-generation students toward an attainable educational pathway.”

Funding for the replication will come from a $100,000 allocated portion of the Wisconsin College Access Challenge Grant, which is administered through the Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation on behalf of the state.

UW-Green Bay’s Phuture Phoenix coordinators will use some of the grant funding to help facilitate the development of the Blugold Beginnings on the UW-Eau Claire campus. Blugold Beginnings was selected from nine outstanding proposals to receive funding from the grant’s open competition. The Phuture Phoenix program was earlier selected as the program to be replicated.

Started in 2003, the Phuture Phoenix program hosts an annual field trip day for 1,500 fifth-graders from low-income schools in the Green Bay area and recruits undergraduate students to mentor students at surrounding schools.

The program has helped more than 5,000 school children understand the importance of education as a path to a brighter future. During the tour, the students are exposed to the college experience, encouraged to be excited about education, eventual high school graduation, and the possibilities for college, university or technical college careers.

The program will be replicated on the UW-Eau Claire campus, with field trip days for area students to be held in spring 2010.

Click here for the Governor’s Office news release.