Wisconsin Hope Lab

In 2014, we committed $2.5 million over 5 years to develop this research lab, the first of its kind, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Its charge is to find new and effective ways to minimize barriers to college completion, so more students reach their full potential.

The Wisconsin HOPE Lab intends to make research findings useful for practical application in college access and success services. Lab staff observe such services in real-world settings and actively engage with leaders in the field, so their research agendas are aligned with the most pressing challenges to college completion.

Lab activities include:

  • Presenting interactive workshops with counselors and students in the field, to identify problems and opportunities
  • Visiting schools and community-based organizations providing college access and success services
  • Conducting research to clarify challenges that might be addressed
  • Testing potential approaches and evaluating them experimentally
  • Sharing news on discoveries, ongoing developments, and evaluation results through a lab blog, podcasts, reports, and partnering with public policy think tanks

For updates on current research projects, visit

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