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Carolyn Wicyk

Often, study at Gateway Technical College serves as a stepping stone to future educational and career success. That was the case for Carolyn Wicyk, who estimates she saved between $10,000 and $15,000 on her bachelor’s degree by starting at Gateway.

She is Banquet Coordinator at the Stout Ale House and Off-Broadway Banquet Center in Menomonie, WI, applying her interest, experience, and education in hospitality services. While working at Grand Geneva Resort ( Lake Geneva, WI ) over the summer before her Senior year at Elkhorn Area High School , she became interested in UW-Stout’s Service Management Program. But was discouraged by the cost. “I knew I’d have to pay for college myself,” says Carolyn.

As she pursued her senior-year classes, she learned two things that helped financially.

  • Through the Youth Options Program she took Gateway classes that counted for credit both at high school and at Gateway.
  • Credits for some Gateway courses could also apply toward the UW-Stout degree.

Following high school graduation, she entered Gateway’s Hotel/Hospitality program on the Elkhorn Campus. She studied for just two semesters, but carefully chose courses transferable for credit at Stout. “By studying for two semesters at Gateway,” says Carolyn, “I saved between $10,000 and $15,000. Gateway was an excellent option.”

She entered UW-Stout just a couple of credits short of sophomore standing and received her bachelor’s degree in May 2006. Carolyn expects to take on more responsibility at her new job soon. Longer-term, she’s interested in event planning.