New approach triples the effort in getting more kids to college


The three largest educational institutions in southeastern Wisconsin – Milwaukee Public Schools, Milwaukee Area Technical College and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee are joining forces in an effort to increase the number of MPS students who graduate from high school and then MATC or UWM – well prepared to succeed in a competitive workplace.

The effort is named M³ or M-cubed. UWM Chancellor Mark Mone told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel “M-cubed is an exponential way for us to work together in a more powerful way than any one of us working alone.”

The joint efforts between the three educational institutions have several priorities targeted towards students, including curriculum development, helping students and their families through the financial aid process and an effort to give freshmen and sophomores the tools to stay on track through their junior and senior years.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports

About 58% of MPS students graduated in the 2014-’15 school year, the latest data available from the state Department of Public Instruction. The majority of MPS grads who go on to college enroll at MATC and UWM. But they often struggle when they get there, graduating in some cases at lower percentages than students overall, and often requiring remedial courses that drive up costs for students who can least afford it.

M-cubed grew out of conversations about those challenges between Mone, Driver and Martin, all three of whom assumed their positions about the same time in 2014 and crossed paths regularly as part of other educational initiatives. They spent the last year and a half pulling together more than 100 people from their organizations to brainstorm about the kinds of things they could do that might make a difference and begin creating the infrastructure and systems to put those in place.

“When we got together, we recognized that we really had to address Bradley Tech, said Martin, who chairs the Bradley Tech Commission, created in 1999 as part of a three-way agreement among MPS, MATC and UWM to provide guidance and oversight of the school.

Read more about this triple-approach education at Milwaukee Journal Sentinel