University of Wisconsin–Madison
So. Madison Partnership Fitness Class

Partners and Programs


  • Division of Continuing Studies:
    • The UW Odyssey Project offers a free humanities course for adult students facing economic barriers to college, helping them overcome adversity and achieve dreams through higher education. As students discuss Shakespeare, Socrates, Martin Luther King, and others, they find a voice and a new sense of hope. Students receive free tuition, textbooks, materials, and childcare. Each year since 2003, 30 students have been accepted into this award-winning program. As one student wrote, “The Odyssey Project helped me unwrap my gifts and rewrite the story of my life.” (Contact: Emily Auerbach)
      • Odyssey Junior provides enrichment to children and grandchildren of Odyssey students and alumni. While the adult class is meeting in The Partnership space on Wednesday nights, children are engaging in work on literature, art, writing, music, theatre, science, and other subjects. Odyssey Junior takes place in three nearby locations: children ages 2 through kindergarten (“Odyssey Jumpstart”) are in the Head Start classrooms; children grades 1–5 (“Odyssey Explorers”) meet in the UW Space Place; and children grades 6–12 (“Odyssey Junior Teens”) meet in the Goodman South Madison Library. This year, 55 children ages 2–18 are participating in Odyssey Junior.
      • Onward Odyssey provides graduates of the Odyssey Project with continued support as they continue on their journeys. In The Partnership space, two targeted UW courses are offered to Odyssey alumni: a summer program training 12 Odyssey graduates to become special education teacher aides fast-tracked to employment in the school district, and a spring course giving 20 alumni intensive work with composition.
    • PLATO (Participatory Learning and Teaching Organization) is a volunteer-led nonprofit organization serving more than 900 lifelong learners in and around Dane County. Most members are approaching or actively enjoying retirement. All share a passion for learning and a desire to stay engaged with the world and with others who share their interests. No formal education or university affiliation is necessary to join. (Contact: Rick Orton)
  • Millionaires Club, a program by Asset Builders of America Inc., focuses on financial literacy, academic achievement, and youth development. The program, which meets every second Sunday of the month, is geared toward middle and high school youth, but parents often attend the sessions with their children. Millionaires Club prepares youth for post-secondary education, as evidenced by three alumni who currently attend UW–Madison. In keeping with the goals of The Partnership, Millionaires Club conducts specific outreach to Odyssey students and their children and encourages their participation. (Contact: Bob Wynn)
  • Morgridge Center for Public Service provides classroom space for service-learning courses, bring together UW–Madison students with a number of different community partners. (Contact: Beth Tryon)
  • The Professional Accelerated Licensure Program (PAL, School of Education), popularly known as the Grow Our Own Program, is a joint project of the UW School of Education and MMSD that supports public school paraprofessionals in becoming dually certified grade 1-8 regular and special education teachers. The PAL participants already hold bachelor’s degrees in subjects outside of education.       (Contact: Mary Klehr)

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