Newswise — MILWAUKEE _ The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee initiated its 60th anniversary celebration last September by asking faculty, staff, students and alumni to complete 60,000 hours of community service across metro Milwaukee. On Wednesday, May 17, at 5:30 p.m., the university will host an awards ceremony and storytelling event, Building Bridges for a Better Milwaukee, at the Helene Zelazo Center for the Performing Arts, 2419 E. Kenwood Blvd., to celebrate the campaign’s successful completion.

“Back in September, we set a goal to reach 60,000 hours of community service to commemorate UWM’s 60th anniversary,” said UWM Chancellor Mark Mone. “As a campus, civic engagement is a vital part of our mission. In response to the challenge, students, faculty members and staff volunteered so much through their classes, events like Make A Difference Day and our Center for Community-Based Learning, Leadership, and Research that they exceeded our goal by reaching 66,000 hours of service. I am grateful that so many dedicated their time to making our community a better place. In the year ahead, we plan to raise the bar by increasing the number of hours as we strive to amplify our positive impact.” 

“The 60,000 Hour Challenge was an opportunity to strengthen our sense of civic pride across the university, and it also demonstrated all the service that goes on ‘behind the scenes,’” added Benjamin Trager of UWM’s Center for Community-Based Learning, Leadership, and Research. “Whether its community-engaged scholarship or board work, ongoing work at community organizations, or quick one-off volunteer events, volunteers are the engine that keeps Milwaukee running. UWM is proud to have contributed to our hometown in such a meaningful way.”

Both the campaign and its culminating event are a nod to UWM’s role as a community engaged university. In 2015, the White House and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching recognized UWM for decades of work building bridges and nurturing partnerships with nonprofits and service providers across southeastern Wisconsin.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Stories begin at 6 p.m., and the storytelling event will be co-hosted by Ex Fabula. Top volunteers will be honored during a brief awards ceremony, and the evening will conclude with digital stories curated by the MPS Deliberative Dialogue and Youth Voice program. Area high schoolers have partnered with UWM professors for the past year to discuss their challenges, triumphs and hopes, which they then transformed into digital stories.


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