College News

New partnership between Foxconn and UW-Madison promotes a promising future in research

Chancellor Rebecca Blank confirmed that this is one of the largest gifts UW-Madison has received towards research programs and the university as a whole. 

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Chancellor Rebecca Blank and Foxconn chairman and founder, Terry Gou, announced a gift of $100 million to aid in promoting engineering and innovative research at UW-Madison in the Wisconsin Institute of Discovery Monday.

“At Foxconn, we see our role as not only being a major investor in Wisconsin, but also a long-term partner to the local community,” Gou said. “This includes promoting a vibrant environment that nurtures and enables Wisconsin’s talented workforce, allowing them to tap the immense opportunities that Wisconn Valley has to offer.”

In hopes of combining efforts with the upcoming science and technology complex in southeastern Wisconsin, the university will allocate the funds toward a new research facility in the College of Engineering.

"You don't get a $100 million gift very often," Blank said following the announcement. "The generosity of Chairman Gou and Foxconn is just great."

In order to receive the investment, UW-Madison will have to match the $100 million in private gifts. This is a part of the larger campaign called All Ways Forward, which is looking to fundraise $3.2 billion over the next two years toward research.

Foxconn and UW-Madison will collaborate on various projects, ranging from robotics to new cancer treatments. The partnership offers an agreement to maintain cooperation between the university and the corporation without having to renegotiate the terms with each new venture.

This will serve as an opportunity for students to work in labs and contribute to projects using Foxconn’s advanced equipment while at UW-Madison, which Blank hopes will lead to a brighter job outlook following graduation.

“This is the type of work that accelerates discovery so that life-changing innovations can move more quickly from the lab into the workplace — creating jobs and helping drive Wisconsin’s economy,” Blank said.

While most of the funds will be put toward the new engineering complex, the remaining money will finance the new Foxconn Institute for Research in Science and Technology in Mount Pleasant, but will maintain an off-campus presence in Madison.

The legalities of the partnership still need to receive a successful vote by the Board of Regents, but the intent to advance a technological future in research remains a primary goal for the university.

“Our collaboration will bring together some of the world’s leading scientists, physicians and engineers to drive advances in technology and science while fostering the talent pipeline that will help build Wisconsin’s future,” Blank said.

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