Diversity at UW-Milwaukee
The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee addresses the issue of diversity in many ways and its progress can be seen by many measures:
- It educates increasing numbers of students of color, especially those from underrepresented groups.
- UWM educates more individuals age 35 and older than any other UW System institution, and enrolls more than one-third of all UW System students age 60 and older.
- More than 1,200 students attending UWM are military veterans or dependents—the largest total in the System.
- To ensure students are regarded on the basis of ability and not disability, the Student Accessibility Center opens additional doors through its Deaf/Hard of Hearing Program, Blind/Visually Impaired Program, Mobility/Physical Disabilities Services and more.
The university maintains a website detailing its attention to diversity at https://www4.uwm.edu/diversity/
Fall 2010 Semester Enrollment Report, Diversity Section
The Fall 2010 freshman class was the most diverse ever, with 22 % of entering freshmen being from underrepresented groups (as compared to 17% last fall). When all students of color are included, they made up about 25% of the entering class (up from 20% last fall).
There was a similar trend of increased diversity among undergraduate transfer students, with students of color from underrepresented groups comprising 20% of incoming transfers (compared to approximately 17% last year). When all students of color are included, the total is approximately 23% (compared to 20% last fall).
As a result, the overall student body continues to be increasingly diverse. Students of color from underrepresented groups now comprise 17% of UWM’s total enrollment (up from less than 15% last fall). When all students of color are included, they comprise almost 20% of our total student body (compared to 17% last year). In addition, the UWM enrollment includes more than 900 international students, up more than 4% from Fall 2009. While international students make up less than 2% of the total undergraduate population, international student make up more than 10 percent of the graduate student population. They represent about 80 different countries.
Access to Success
In both 2008-2009 and 2009-2010, UWM granted more than 5,000 academic degrees for the first time in the university’s history. It seeks to grant more academic degrees in the future through new initiatives, the most significant being Access to Success (A2S). Started in 2005, A2S is the campus blueprint to enhance access to UWM while, at the same time, promoting greater student success. Those who participate in Access to Success consistently perform satisfactorily in their classes and continue on to the next academic level at a higher rate than those who do not participate.
One of the primary goals of Access to Success is to close the gap in performance and retention between targeted populations (underrepresented students of color: African-American, Latino/Latina, Southeast Asian and American Indian) and non-targeted populations. Over the first four years of A2S, the gap in retention rates has closed between targeted and non-targeted students from more than 15 percentage points to less than 9 percentage points (Table 1) and the gap in satisfactory performance rates has been closed from 25 percentage points to 17 percentage points (Table 2).
Source: UWM Access to Success Four Year Update, February 2010.
Financial support for students of color
Significant new scholarship programs, some of them supported by the university’s record-breaking $125-million Campaign for UWM, have been created. Especially attractive are the Chancellor's Scholarship for Diversity and Leadership, and the Academic Achievement Leadership Award programs. Both are full-ride scholarship programs renewable for up to four academic years.
UWM academic programs that address issues of diversity
- Africology Major
- American Indian Studies Interdisciplinary Major
- Asian Studies Certificate
- Cultures and Communities Certificate Program
- Education - M.S. in Cultural Foundations of Education
- Education - PhD in Urban Education
- Ethnic Studies Interdisciplinary Program
- Global Studies Major
- International Studies Major
- Jewish Studies Certificate
- Latin American & Caribbean Studies Certificate
- Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies Certificate
- Middle Eastern & North African Studies Certificate
- Russian and Eastern European Studies Certificate
- Women’s Studies Graduate Certificate
- Women’s Studies Major/Minor\