Froedtert Hospital announced it will establish an $11.5 million scholarship program using funds from the Kurtis Froedtert Memorial Lutheran Hospital Trust to benefit Milwaukee Area Technical College and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee students.
Each school will receive $5.75 million over 20 years to fund scholarships for students in health-related fields.
It is the largest-ever donation to the MATC Foundation, according the college’s president Vicki Martin.
“We are grateful for this meaningful gift from Froedtert Hospital and together we will prepare Milwaukee’s diverse future health care workforce, reduce skills gaps and workforce shortages, and continue to break down the barriers that stand between students and an education that connects to a career with a family-supporting income,” Martin said.
Both she and UWM chancellor Mark Mone said the funds will enhance their schools’ existing partnership with Milwaukee Public Schools, called M-cubed, which is aimed at improving graduation rates and better preparing students for college and workforce.
Portions of the scholarship funds will also be allocated to graduates of MPS and will include a need-based component.
“The Milwaukee Area Technical College and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee were chosen for their strong local presence and steadfast commitment to providing educational opportunities to those who live and work in the community,” said Eric Conley, executive vice president of Froedtert Health and president of Froedtert Hospital. “Equally important was the opportunity each institution offers students who traditionally might not have access to post-secondary education, fundamental to the scholarship program. Foundationally, this gift also continues to honor our commitment to health equity across the region by helping eliminate health care disparities and addressing social determinants of health like education and employment.”
The Kurtis Froedtert Memorial Lutheran Hospital Trust was established by the Last Will and Testament of Kurtis Froedtert, the late leader of the Froedtert Malting Co., in 1951 to fund construction of the hospital.
Prior to her death last year, Kurtis’s daughter Mazie Willms was involved in a years-long legal battle over her father’s wishes for the $100 million trust, arguing it wasn’t being directed to his other charitable interests.
The new scholarship program is the result of a settlement agreement reached by the trustees of the trust, state attorney general Josh Kaul and Froedtert Hospital. The agreement is subject to approval by the Milwaukee County Circuit Court.