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The Wisconsin Idea Database tracks the many ways in which the UW impacts all 72 counties of the state. This impact is generally known as the Wisconsin Idea. It’s an oft-referenced concept beloved by administrators and alumni alike. The Wisconsin Idea stems from a statement made in 1905 by UW president Charles Van Hise 1879, 1880, MS1882, PHD1892: “I shall never be content until the beneficent influence of the University reaches every family of the state.” (We’d add even beyond the state, but we’ll keep our focus within state lines — just as the Wisconsin Idea Database does.) Want to know how many alumni your county boasts? Or how much direct revenue your county gets from the UW? You can get quick facts like these and more on any county in Wisconsin. You can even search by topic to see what kinds of research projects and partnerships the UW has in each area. Try typing in agriculture, and you’ll get 131 hits back on various projects dedicated to improving farming practices and supporting agribusiness. Or search by county. For any Wausharans reading this, you have 373 projects located in or benefiting your county. Ruskites, you have 371 projects impacting your county. Look up your own county to see how the Wisconsin Idea walks the walk where you live! And if you live outside of Wisconsin, try using the UW’s home base of Dane County to track the UW’s influence beyond its many fine students and alumni.

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