Nicholas Donation Creates UWM Camp Scholarships For MPS
June 7, 2010
MILWAUKEE - The Nicholas Family Foundation will underwrite the funding for 100 scholarships to allow Milwaukee Public School students to attend boys and girls basketball camps at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee this summer.
The family's donation was announced today during an event at UWM's Pavilion.
UWM Chancellor Carlos E. Santiago, incoming Milwaukee Public Schools Superintendant Dr. Gregory Thornton and David Nicholas, President and Chief Investment Officer of Nicholas Company, Inc., made the announcement.
UWM alumnus Nicholas has been an ardent supporter of the school and its athletics program, and now provides a big assist in helping the department and University get even more involved with youth in the local community.
"The University is key to the success of this community, and what we are celebrating this morning is another aspect of what UWM does in this community," Santiago said. "David and (wife) Lori have been huge supporters of this athletic program since before I arrived, and without their support we couldn't make the kind of connections that are so important. We are happy to partner with the Milwaukee Public Schools in this endeavor, and in the end this is all for the students, giving them an opportunity to get better at whatever they try to do."
The donation will give MPS students from grades 3-8 the opportunity to attend a handful of basketball camps at UWM over the next few weeks, including day camps and a special "Day With Dad" event.
The "Day With Dad" camp is June 12 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Girls' day camp is June 14-18 from 9-11:30 a.m., while boys' day camp is June 15-18 from 1-4:30 p.m. and June 22-25 from 8:30 a.m. to noon. All camps are held in the Klotsche Center and are directed by UWM men's basketball coach Rob Jeter and UWM women's basketball coach Sandy Botham.
"This is a great program and we are more than willing to support it," David Nicholas said. "Rob and Sandy have done a great job with community involvement, and I can't wait to have these young kids in the program and with the coaches. I know these coaches will provide a great program for these kids and will teach them a lot more than basketball."
For MPS, the donation will provide immediate summer opportunities for students, giving them a way to positively experience the beginning of the summer and to connect with healthy activities and with UWM. The hope is that, by exposing the kids to UWM at a young age, it might lead to involvement in some of the summer academic programs or other sports camps at the University.
"Today, on behalf of those 100 youngsters who probably wouldn't have had an opportunity to come (to camp), I say `thank you'," Dr. Thornton said. "This may be one thing to inspire them to continue to go on through high school, do a great job and matriculate here to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee."
For Jeter and Botham, the support of their programs from the Nicholas family has been vital in their continued growth. This now extends to assisting them with opportunities in the community, something crucial for both programs. In fact, the two programs shared the Horizon League's Community Outreach Award this year.
"We are very happy to be able to offer this opportunity to some deserving kids from Milwaukee Public Schools," Jeter said. "The Nicholas family has always been very generous with support for our program and is also extremely active in a positive way with our community. This is a perfect way to combine that support with our continued goal of being a very active partner in Milwaukee."
"This is a great way to help UWM athletics and UWM basketball become even more involved in our community," Botham said. "We are thankful for all of the support the Nicholas family has provided for our program over the years and it's very nice that some of their support can be used to provide opportunities for deserving students from the Milwaukee Public Schools."
The Milwaukee Public Schools Recreation Department will coordinate the selection of the scholarship recipients. William Molbeck, Commissioner of Sports and Athletics, will be the point person for MPS and can be reached at 414-475-8219.