MADISON, Wis. – The University of Wisconsin System needs to reach out to business and community leaders around the state to better understand how the UW System can better serve Wisconsin’s needs, says President Ray Cross.
Cross was in Algoma Wednesday to meet with small business owners, community leaders, and educators. He heard first-hand about the important challenges and opportunities they face.
“The UW System has the human and capital resources to be a powerful catalyst, one capable of transforming the state’s societal and economic conditions in ways that benefit all the people of Wisconsin,” Cross said. “We are committed to working with our business, community, and education partners to more fully develop the rich talent base we have here in Wisconsin.”
Cross’ mini-tour included the Farm Market Kitchen, a market incubator facility led by director Mary Pat Carlson; the Von Stiehl Winery, the state’s oldest licensed winery; and the Bearcat’s Fish House, a small family business established in 1986.
At Algoma High School, Cross met with Algoma School District Superintendent Nick Cochart, local school board members, faculty and students. He also learned more about the high school’s successful STEM-focused technical education program, which received Wisconsin’s Manufacturing Education Innovation Award for 2014. Graduates of the program have gone on to careers with local manufacturers.
“Collaborative efforts between educational programs and the business community can provide great mutual benefit, boosting the local economy while providing rewarding careers in high-demand fields,” Cross said.
Cross, who became the UW System’s seventh president in February, has spent a good part of his first year listening to the interests and concerns of Wisconsin community members.