Football Creates More FinAid for UW

December 31, 2011

With two appearances in the Rose Bowl back to back, University of Wisconsin-Madison has developed a fantastic football program. However, that football success story has also paid off for students who use financial aid to go to college at University of Wisconsin. The on-field success has also brought help for classrooms and libraries, providing even more funding. There are record-breaking sales for the trademarked university merchandise due to the football team's success. Students are also now able to receive more funds for need-based aid because of the football program.

The gross royalties of the licensed merchandise total in about $3.3 million, which is the highest total in the history of the Wisconsin licensing program. The merchandise sells everything from t-shirts, hats, logo stickers, decals, cups, and all sorts of other items. The football team has brought enormous amounts of attention to the school and gotten people all over the state involved in its success, which has only improved the financial aid program for students.

The total revenue represents a 36 percent increase. In 2009, the licensing program only made $2.4 million, and before that, there was a high of $2.8 million, which means that this is the highest grossing year yet for University of Wisconsin's licensing team. The additional revenue will supply the school with more resources and get more students interested in financial aid. Students who were already receiving aid can ask for additional amounts or see an increase in their financial aid packages for the following year.

Cindy Van Matre is the trademark licensing director for University of Wisconsin. She believes that the football program's success is only the beginning to what the licensing program plans to do. "This is a huge testament to the success of our teams, our university and the strength of the Wisconsin brand," says Van Matre. "Our products are available literally around the world."

When selling any merchandise, whether it be a hoodie, mug or keychain that bears the likeness of Bucky Badger, the school's mascot, a motion W or University of Wisconsin Logo, the manufacturers agree to a code of conduct and will pay a small royalty fee based on the sales generated for any of these items. Half of the funds go directly to financial aid programs as need-based "Bucky Grants" for University of Wisconsin students. These funds are targeted for undergraduate students on campus.

"We're thrilled by this success, and even more proud that we can use it to help students and families in need," Susan Fischer stated, the director of the Office of Student Financial Aid for UW.

Fischer also stated that the number of students who will receive the grants was 155 for the 2010-11 academic year. The average award was about $4,193. As royalties are rolling revenue, the amounts are disbursed throughout the fiscal year and that will also dictate how many funds are available for Bucky Grants. Students also receive a combination of loans and work-study programs as part of a package that combines, federal , state and institutional aid.

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