Milwaukee Academy of Science expansion paves way for enrollment growth

The high school wing of Milwaukee Academy of Science.

Last updated on October 1st, 2021 at 01:16 pm

Milwaukee Academy of Science leaders and supporters today celebrated the completion of a building expansion that allows the school to increase its enrollment by 250 students.

The project involved converting the third floor of what was formerly a hospital wing to house four high school classrooms, four middle school classrooms, eight staff offices and three multipurpose STEAM labs. The labs are outfitted with equipment donated by Milwaukee Tool.

The school is located at 2000 W. Kilbourn Ave., which was formerly Milwaukee Hospital and Sinai Samaritan Medical Center. Prior to the expansion, it occupied only the first two floors of the building.

The third-floor expansion will allow MAS to grow its enrollment from 1,250 students to 1,500 by 2024.

“This expansion ushers in an exciting new era of growth and opportunity,” said Anthony McHenry, chief executive officer of Milwaukee Academy of Science. “Thanks to our generous donors and partners in this project, Milwaukee Academy of Science can continue to offer our scholars unmatched educational opportunities that will serve them through their academic careers and beyond and expand to serve even more Milwaukee students.”

The project received funding from the Northwestern Mutual Foundation, which recently announced an additional $500,000 gift as part of the company’s focus on investing in high-quality education at targeted public, charter and choice schools in the region.

The Burke Foundation, Todd Wehr Foundation, Bradley Foundation, Kohl Philanthropies and Milwaukee Tool also were among the top donors to the $5 million capital campaign.

MAS was founded in 2000 by Michael T. Bolger, former president of the Medical College of Wisconsin, who was concerned at the time that fewer than 1% of the medical college’s students were minorities from Milwaukee. The school, which serves a 96% economically disadvantaged population, is focused on preparing students for careers in the STEM and health fields. For seven consecutive years, the school said its graduating classes have achieved a 100% graduation and college acceptance rate.

The school has garnered support from several business leaders, including the late Milwaukee real estate developer Gary Grunau, a founding board member and former board president for MAS. The project received a $100,000 gift from the Gary P. Grunau Good for Milwaukee Fund at the Greater Milwaukee Foundation.

The next phase of its expansion project includes the construction of a new gymnasium, which is expected to be complete by spring 2022. The planned 6,700-square-foot gym facility would be developed adjacent to the existing gym building and would have its own entryway and include locker rooms and bathrooms.

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Lauren Anderson covers health care, nonprofits and education for BizTimes. Lauren previously reported on education for the Waukesha Freeman. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she studied journalism. In her free time, Lauren enjoys hiking, kayaking, and seeing live music.

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