Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 67.68
Liaison John Gardner
Submission Date May 31, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
PA-8: Affordability and Access

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.39 / 4.00 Kate Nelson
Chief Sustainability Officer
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have policies and programs in place to make it accessible and affordable to low-income students?:

A brief description of any policies and programs to minimize the cost of attendance for low-income students:

As a state institution of higher education, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee is committed to keeping tuition and fees affordable for Wisconsin residents and our surrounding communities. UWM is the most affordable 4-year degree in the Milwaukee area and is one of the most affordable R1 institutions in the country.

A brief description of any programs to equip the institution’s faculty and staff to better serve students from low-income backgrounds:

"Beyond the First Year Summit"- Campus session to support advisers and faculty with student success and retention.

A brief description of any programs to prepare students from low-income backgrounds for higher education:

The Student Success Center has several services and centers that support low-income students, including, but not limited to the Access to Success Program.

A brief description of the institution's scholarships for low-income students:

A State grant for undergraduate Wisconsin residents who don't receive the Wisconsin Higher Education Grant (WHEG). Family income must be less than $60,000 and must have unmet need.

The Pell Grant is available to high need undergraduate students seeking their first undergraduate degree. Student’s eligibility is determined by the federal need analysis formula. The amount of the Pell Grant varies depending on the information supplied on the FAFSA and whether a student goes full-time or part-time.

The Federal Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant is awarded to undergraduate students with high need and is awarded in addition to the Federal Pell Grant. Eligibility is also based on the availability of funds.

This is a state funded grant available to undergraduate Wisconsin residents pursing their first undergraduate degree who have high need as determined by the state formula. Students must be enrolled for at least six credits and can receive the grant for a maximum of 10 semesters.

The Talent Incentive Program (TIP) Grant provides grant assistance to the most financially needy and educationally disadvantaged undergraduate Wisconsin resident students. First-time freshmen students are nominated for the TIP Grant by the school financial aid offices or by counselors of the Wisconsin Educational Opportunity Programs (WEOP). To continue to receive the TIP Grant, students must show financial need. Eligibility cannot exceed ten semesters and is only available for six years after the initial grant is awarded. Funding for the TIP Grant is provided by both the State of Wisconsin and the Federal Government.

Federal Work Study is one of the Title IV federal financial aid programs. It is awarded to students based on their demonstrated financial need using information from the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Through this program students may earn up to the amount listed on their financial aid award letter and their wages will be subsidized by the federal government. Due to this subsidy, some employers require students with Federal Work Study awards and their job postings will state this. If a student does not qualify for Federal Work Study they apply for any position listed as Regular.

A brief description of any programs to guide parents of low-income students through the higher education experience:

"Panther Families" is an extensive support system for parents of UWM students. Parent-focused website and programs support UWM students with specialized guides, workshops and orientation. This includes financial planning among many other things.

A brief description of any targeted outreach to recruit students from low-income backgrounds:

Outreach with Milwaukee Public Schools is extensive. Also there is the Upward Bound programs. Students who enroll in the Upward Bound program must be a first-generation college student or meet income eligibility guidelines. The UWM Upward Bound program selects students in grade 9 and 10 who attend one of the following "target" schools: Bay View, Hmong American Peace Academy, Morse Marshall, Milwaukee High School of the Arts, Riverside, South Division, Washington, and Wisconsin Conservatory Lifelong Learning..

Host multiple programs for middle and high school students to prepare them for college success.

A brief description of other admissions policies or programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students:

The UW-Milwaukee mission statement includes:
"(e) To further academic and professional opportunities at all levels for women, minority, part-time, and financially or educationally disadvantaged students."

A brief description of other financial aid policies or programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students:

A brief description of other policies and programs to make the institution accessible and affordable to low-income students not covered above:

Does the institution have policies and programs in place to support non-traditional students?:

A brief description of any scholarships provided specifically for part-time students:


The Life Impact Program assists disadvantaged parents in their efforts to attain a higher education. The program provides participants with a $5,000 renewable scholarship as well as academic, professional and personal support. Program scholars have access to a Life Coach team who serves as a first point of contact for all concerns. This team follows students' progress, assesses their needs and provides them with resources, workshops and/or referrals to other on-campus or community programs. To date, program efforts have resulted in 84.2% graduation and retention rate for the 133 UWM student parents that have been served. Of the program graduates, 100% have reported employment and/or are seeking advanced degrees within 6-9 months of graduation.

The Life Impact Program was established in 2005 through a generous donation from the Jane Bradley Pettit Foundation. Along with their continued support, funding from Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation has allowed Life Impact to expand and extend thier program services.

A brief description of any onsite child care facilities, partnerships with local facilities, and/or subsidies or financial support to help meet the child care needs of students:

The Children's Learning Center is located right on the main UWM campus. UWM Students receive greatly discounted fees for child care.

A brief description of other policies and programs to support non-traditional students:

The Student Success Center offers distinct services and orientation for Transfer and Adult Students.

UWM’s extensive program array offers a wide range of academic options, including hundreds of online and blended courses to accommodate your busy life. UWM offers 23 degree programs that can be completed entirely during evening hours. Resources such as the UWM Children’s Center, the Life Impact Program, Military Education Benefits Office and many other support services help adult and returning students keep balance in their lives while earning a degree.

UWM also hosts an Outstanding Nontraditional Student Awards every year.

Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 of this credit (accessibility and affordability indicators)?:

Indicators that the institution is accessible and affordable to low-income students::
Percentage (0-100)
The percentage of entering students that are low-income 37
The graduation/success rate for low-income students 32
The percentage of student financial need met, on average 42.90
The percentage of students graduating with no interest-bearing student loan debt 27

The percentage of students that participate in or directly benefit from the institution’s policies and programs to support low-income and non-traditional students:

The website URL where information about the institution's affordability and access programs is available:

As a nationally ranked Doctoral/Research Extensive University emphasizing results-oriented research, and as a public university that promotes diversity and inclusion in all we do, our faculty, instructors and advisers provide many ways for UWM students to achieve academic excellence.


The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.