University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire

NEWS RELEASE

News Bureau . Schofield Hall 201 . Eau Claire, WI 54702
phone: (715) 836-4741
fax: (715) 836-2900

UW-Eau Claire’s Jumpstart Program
To Benefit From Federal Grant

 MAILED:  Dec. 18, 2003

EAU CLAIRE — The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire is one of the partners to a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that was announced this week.

The Early Learning Opportunities Act Discretionary Grant was awarded to the Connect for Children Council: A Partnership of the Infant and Child Health Action Team and the Eau Claire Coalition for Youth. It’s the first time the grant has been awarded to a Wisconsin community.

UW-Eau Claire’s Jumpstart program is among the projects to be funded with the grant dollars. Jumpstart pairs federal work-study college students with children in Head Start and other programs serving low-income preschoolers to help improve their early literacy and social skills.

“Jumpstart has been a very successful program,” said Donald Mowry, director of UW-Eau Claire’s Center for Service-Learning. “The program connects two national trends — the public need for quality early childhood programs and the national service movement that recruits college students to community service.”

UW-Eau Claire is at the forefront of the community service trend with its requirement that all students fulfill 30 or more hours of service-learning activities to graduate, Mowry said. Jumpstart is a perfect fit with the university’s academic and community goals, he said.

Eau Claire County Department of Human Services is a partner with the Connect for Children Council and will be the fiscal agent for the federal grant funds. Eight collaborating partners — including UW-Eau Claire — will carry out the grant funded projects, all of which will address the early learning needs of area children.

“It’s wonderful that our community has received $500,000 to support programs that help area children,” Mowry said. “Programs like Jumpstart help children enter school better prepared to succeed. The community is a better place because of it.”

U.S. Rep. Ron Kind joined representative from the Connect for Children Council and the project coordinators to announce the 2003 Early Learning Opportunities Act Discretionary Grant Dec. 17 in Eau Claire.

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 Judy Berthiaume, Director
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield 201
(715) 836-4741
newsbur@uwec.edu

Updated: December 18, 2003