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Gene Haas Foundation donates $540,000 to college for scholarships and to help students return to college

Gene Haas Innovation Alley Ribbon Cutting  Ceremony

Gateway names space Gene Haas Innovation Alley

This week has been one of celebrating the strength of the partnership between Gateway Technical College and the Gene Haas Foundation.

Gateway on Wednesday announced a $500,000 donation from the Gene Haas Foundation to the Gateway Technical College Foundation, a contribution that will assist former students to return to college and finish their degrees through the Promise 2 Finish program.

The program provides adults who have earned 12 or more college credits and have been out of college for at least two years the opportunity to finish their degree tuition-free. Potential students must be at least age 23 or older by Jan. 1, 2022.

“With this investment we will be able to reduce the financial burden for current students and increase college access for many more,” said Gateway Technical College President and CEO Bryan Albrecht.

The college also celebrated the ongoing generosity of the Haas Foundation by announcing the naming of the Gene Haas Innovation Alley in its SC Johnson iMET Center. This space plays a role in Gateway students completing their education and has also served as a location where important local, state, regional and national functions have been held.

“The mission of Gene Haas Foundation is to introduce young people to careers in manufacturing and improve the pathway by providing students with scholarships and life-changing experiences by partnering with the institutions they attend,” said Kathy Looman, Gene Haas Foundation director, education. 

“Gateway has an exceptional program developed under the inspired leadership of Bryan Albrecht and the amazing team at Gateway Technical College. We are so proud to be part of their success.”

Finally, the Gateway Foundation announced that the Haas Foundation will also donate $40,000 to be used for scholarships for computer numeric control students. A total of 16 scholarships will be awarded over the next two years to students at $2,500 each, helping them to continue their education and gain the skills to succeed in a very in-demand career field.

“On behalf of the Gateway community we are grateful for the investments the Gene Haas Foundation continues to make in our college and students,” said Albrecht. “The Gene Haas Innovation Alley is symbolic of the importance of manufacturing career pathways for Southeastern Wisconsin and the nation.”

Haas has contributed finances, equipment and training to the college over the years in many ways, helping instructors as well as students.

“We are grateful for the Haas commitment to education and training and their commitment to partner with Gateway and the Foundation,” said Gateway Technical College Foundation Executive Director Jennifer Charpentier.

“They have a long history of supporting community organizations and education, and we are honored to be part of their legacy of giving.”