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Chancellor announces final second-round awards

Chancellor Biddy Martin has accepted 15 additional projects to complete the second round of funding for the Madison Initiative for Undergraduates.

“I’d like to thank all the members of the community who developed proposals in the first two rounds,” says Martin. “We saw a range of impressive ideas aimed not only at enhancing, but, in some cases, transforming aspects of undergraduate education and the student experience on campus. I regret the fact that we are unable to approve even more proposals.”

Funding for faculty lines will be provided to:

–Chemistry, Letters and & Science.
–International Studies Major, L&S and International Studies
–Building Excellence in Natural Resources and the Environment, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.
Economics, L&S.
–A proposal to increase TA Resources in CALS.
–History, L&S.
–Psychology, L&S.
–Spanish & Portuguese, L&S
–School of Social Work, L&S
–Digital Studies Initiative, L&S, School of Education and School of Human Ecology
–Physiology 435, School of Medicine and Public Health
–Certificate in Prof Communication in East Asian Languages, L&S
–An educational initiative in global public health, CALS.

The new student services-oriented projects to be funded are:

–A proposal to expand Residential Learning Communities, University Housing.
–Internships in the liberal arts, L&S

Complete copies of specific, accepted proposals can be received by emailing provost@provost.wisc.edu. The first set of second round proposals was announced on March 24 and detailed here.

As in earlier rounds, the review process included both a student board and the Madison Initiative for Undergraduates Oversight Committee, which is composed of students, faculty, staff and administrators. A group of 31 top-rated proposals was then recommended to Martin. The second round funding was split into two groups.

The full second round will involve about $8.2 million in projects. The first round of funding last fall totaled about $3.8 million, leaving about $4 million for the third — and final round — next year. At this point, the Madison Initiative has led to the authorization to hire about 55 faculty, 25 staff, and more than 50 TAs.

“Even at this point, the impact on campus is huge,” says Provost Paul DeLuca. “The additional faculty positions are enabling departments to offer new opportunities to students. Two great examples are areas such as Psychology, which is revamping its curriculum, and CALS, which will greatly expand courses in the economics of natural resource management.”

Proposals for a third round of funding will be accepted beginning this fall and will be announced in early 2011. More information will be forthcoming.

“I thank those who submitted proposals for caring about undergraduate education and the overall quality of the university,” Martin says. “I hope we can find other funds over time, private as well as public, to enable the improvements you seek to make.”

The Madison Initiative for Undergraduates, approved last spring, involves a supplemental tuition charge to be phased in during the next four years to improve the quality and long-term value of undergraduate education while also providing funds for need-based aid.

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