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Thursday, June 20, 2024

Embarking on the Action Project

The Daily Cardinal tackles college accessibility, affordability and more

In 2014, The Daily Cardinal first set forth on a series of three topic-focused issues, which we dubbed the “Action Project.” These issues explored diversity at UW-Madison, dissected the value of a college degree and delved into areas of sustainability both campus and citywide. Two years later, we’re tackling this project again. 

Thanks to a generous grant from the Evjue Foundation, Daily Cardinal staffers have been able to dive into three new areas of focus, looking once again at what matters and what’s relevant to students today. 

Not only are these exciting issues for our writers to take part in producing, but these are topics we feel should exist in forums where they may not currently. Day-to-day coverage does not always lend itself to bigger conversations; with the Action Project, we hope to give these topics the conversation they deserve.   

Join us as we embark on this year’s Action Project. After exploring this issue on college accessibility, make sure to return March 14 for our second piece on political advocacy on campus, and again April 18 for our final installment on student mental and physical health.

About this issue 

Education is arguably the most important policy debate happening today, and having a college education has become more and more crucial recently. A 2014 study by the Pew Research Center found that among full-time employees between the ages of 25 and 32, those with a college degree could expect to earn $17,500 more annually than those who only had a high school diploma.

With growing concern over income inequality, making college accessible is one of the most important things our legislators and policymakers can do for young adults. 

But there’s far more to college accessibility than just the financial standpoint. How can we open up more doors for people of different racial and socioeconomic backgrounds? How does one approach college at UW if English is not one’s first language? What happens to those who have disabilities that hinder their literal access to college classrooms?

But the questions and struggles don’t stop once the student is inside the institution. 

When students do obtain that access, how can we make sure the college environment is inclusive and caters to different minority groups? If certain groups are ostracized or isolated, how can we combat this? 

This issue strives to answer these questions and approach this topic from viewpoints that are oftentimes overlooked. We hope these stories can stimulate discussions on college accessibility, from topics of far-reaching consequence to more nuanced ones of equal significance.

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You can check out all our Action Project stories here.

What areas of our coverage did you enjoy? Was there an issue of accessibility that we missed out on? We’d love for our readers to be part of the Action Project conversation. Please send all comments and concerns to Jim and Emily at 

This issue will be on stands all week. If you’re looking for our daily coverage, check out and stay up to date.

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