Northwestern Mutual's charitable foundation has awarded $1.6 million in grants to 25 educational programs that emphasize improving reading proficiency and college and career readiness in the Milwaukee area.
[caption id="attachment_123412" align="alignright" width="300"] Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co.'s headquarters in downtown Milwaukee.[/caption]
The foundation said it will also give out college and trade school scholarships to students from the Amani, Metcalfe Park and Muskego Way neighborhoods in Milwaukee.
"The future of our city is dependent on the quality of education we provide our youth," said John Schlifske, chairman and chief executive officer of Northwestern Mutual. "A well-educated community builds the foundation for a skilled and responsible workforce."
Many of the grants have been awarded to programs that aim specifically to address third-grade reading proficiency. In a statement released Thursday, foundation representatives cited a 2015 report completed by Milwaukee Succeeds that found only 16 percent of 3rd grade students in the city read at a proficient level.
Here's a list of the grant recipients:
Arts @ Large
Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee
COA Youth & Family Centers
First Stage Milwaukee
Milwaukee College Preparatory School
Milwaukee Public Library
Next Door Foundation
Penfield Children's Center
St. Marcus Lutheran School
SHARP Literacy Inc.
United Community Center
Culture & Climate
City Year Milwaukee
Schools That Can Milwaukee, Inc.
Teach For America-Milwaukee
Milwaukee Public Schools
The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System on behalf of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee