Robert M. La Follette School of Public Affairs
Tuesday, March 5, 2019

Showcase to feature DreamUp finalists

Showcase to feature DreamUp finalists

The DreamUp Wisconsin Showcase on April 3 will feature dozens of innovative ideas submitted to meet the Alliance for the American Dream 2018 Challenge of helping 10,000 Dane County households increase their income by 10 percent by 2020.

DreamUp Wisconsin, the local affiliate of the Alliance for the American Dream, is a community-university collaboration seeking to expand economic security and shared prosperity in Dane County. The Alliance is sponsored by Schmidt Futures, a philanthropic initiative founded by Eric and Wendy Schmidt that seeks to improve societal outcomes through the development of emerging science and technology.

Participants at the Showcase, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Gordon Commons, will hear from organizers of the two local teams that advanced to the final round of competition, where they will compete for potential investment.

The Showcase, hosted by Annette Miller, CEO of EQT by Design, also will highlight other local proposals developed as a result of the initiative and launch a second round of competition. Chandra Miller Fienen, executive director of StartingBlock, will give the keynote address. EQT by Design is a strategic advising and planning company that helps organizations and businesses develop and design engagement and inclusion activities. Founded in late 2013, StartingBlock is an entrepreneurial hub in Madison.

Finalists are “Legal Interventions for Transforming (LIFT) Dane,” with Legal Action of Wisconsin, UW–Madison’s Law School, and Employment and Training Association of Dane County, and “We Care for Dane Kids,” with the Wisconsin Early Childhood Association, Reach Dane, Satellite Family Child Care Systems, UW–Madison School of Social Work and School of Education, City of Madison, Madison Out-of-School Time, and TASC.

In 2018, UW–Madison received a $1.5 million grant from Schmidt Futures to fund DreamUp Wisconsin. La Follette School Associate Professor J. Michael Collins is a faculty lead of DreamUp, and former La Follette School Associate Director Hilary Shager (MPA ’05, PhD ’12) is the project manager. Shager is associate director of programs & management/researcher at UW–Madison’s Institute for Research on Poverty, which is leading the proposal development process.