UW-Madison Sees Tenfold Increase In Summer Scholarships

University Will Offer $250,000 In Need-Based Aid This Summer

Steve Shupe (CC-BY-ND)

The average summer course at the University of Wisconsin-Madison costs about $1,200 for a Wisconsin student while an out-of-state students pay more than $3,000.

To help with this burden, the university began offering financial aid for summer courses last year. The budget was $25,000 and only 12 students received aid.

“Many students want to consider summer term but they’ve already spent if they have any financial aid,” said Jeffrey Russell, dean of the Division of Continuing Studies at the UW-Madison.

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To get more students involved in summer term, the university has pledged to offer $250,000 in summer scholarships in 2016.

“We could see a tenfold increase in the number of students who get aid this summer,” said Russell.

In addition to increasing the amount of aid, the university is expanding its selection of courses. More than 100 new online and in-person courses are expected to be added this summer. Russell said the surge in the number of courses is expected to attract many more students to enroll in summer term. That additional tuition revenue would go to covering scholarship costs.

Russell said many students see summer term as a time to take courses too rigorous for the normal school year. He said the summer term has the potential of being equally as valuable to students as the fall or spring semester.

“If a student can utilize a couple of summers and prevent having to take the fall term, that can be significant savings to a student and their family because they then dont have to worry about a 12-month lease, they dont have to worry about paying tuition,” Russell said. “Many of them would be in the marketplace. Instead of paying, through job placement they would actually be receiving income.”