This news release describes past events and should be used for historical purposes only. Please note date of release.
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield Hall 218
Eau Claire, WI 54702-4004
Grant to Provide Funds
To Improve Language Skills
phone (715) 836-4741
fax (715) 836-2900

MAILED: April 7, 2000

EAU CLAIRE — The American Ethnic Coordinating Office at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire recently received a $12,000 grant from the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.
The grant, created by David Gregorio Fleitas, Hispanic/Latino program coordinator, will be used to create a new pre-college, bilingual program to improve student communication skills in English and Spanish. The grant will target Hispanic students from Milwaukee, Madison and Green Bay — areas with large Hispanic populations. Twenty students in grades six through eight will be selected to spend June 26-July 2, at UW-Eau Claire improving their language skills.
The students will work on reading, writing and grammar skills in English and Spanish and will work to become more fluent in English. The students also will take trips to museums in the Chippewa Valley and Minneapolis-St. Paul. Money from the grant will be used to cover transportation costs, housing and meals for participating students.
This program is one of the first bilingual pre-college programs; most pre-college programs focus on math and science. But Fleitas said encouraging pre-college students to improve their English skills only can be beneficial.
"Communication is everything in the information age," Fleitas said. "It's absolutely essential that there is communication."
Students involved in the one-week program will be tracked throughout high school in hopes of encouraging them to continue their education at UW-Eau Claire or another UW System school.
"It's about making connections with faculty and staff," Fleitas said.
It is hoped those connections will bring more students of color to UW System campuses and increase the minority population, Fleitas said.

UWEC [Administrative Offices] [News Bureau]

Janice B. Wisner
UW-Eau Claire News Bureau
Schofield 218
(715) 836-4741

Updated: April 7, 2000