The Wisconsin Idea
Service is who we are and what we do. UW–Madison’s longest and proudest tradition remains the Wisconsin Idea, the principle that the university should improve people’s lives beyond the classroom.
First articulated in 1905 by UW President Charles Van Hise, the Wisconsin Idea continues to guide our research, teaching, outreach, and public service. And it knows no bounds. Together, the contributions of our students, faculty, staff, and alumni extend far beyond our campus—blazing new trails for the citizens of Wisconsin, the nation, and the world.