The President's and Chancellor's Challenge

The President's and Chancellor’s Challenge: A Crosstown Collaboration to Address Poverty

Marquette University and University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee 



The President’s and Chancellor’s Challenge is a seed grant program, developed in partnership with Johnson Controls, that provides funding for innovative, interdisciplinary, collaborative work that addresses critical issues and opportunities facing the City of Milwaukee. This round of the challenge will focus on the urgent issue of poverty, its root causes, and its subsequent effects on members of the various communities across Milwaukee.

The program will support 2-3 funded projects with budgets of $50-75K for an 18-month timeframe. Proposals are encouraged to address one or more aspects within the following focus areas, adapted from the indicators and monitoring framework for the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, a Global Initiative for the United Nations.


Deprivation in:

  • Nutrition; healthcare; education; safe drinking water; and modern energy.


Access to:

  • Nutritious and affordable food; full and productive employment; safe and affordable housing; social protection; inclusive and equitable education; a functioning health system; transportation; and internet.


Additional areas of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Household vulnerability to economic shocks and those posed by natural hazards; empowerment or psychological wellbeing; diverse talent development opportunities; violence; the justice system; financial literacy; sustainable wealth-building; and homeownership.


Partnerships with community organizations are highly recommended from the ideation phase through the development of the proposal.  Proposals will require participation of faculty from both Marquette and UW-Milwaukee as well as community partners.


Criteria for project funding will include:

  • Description of intended outcomes, methods to evaluate project impact, including clearly articulated metrics, ability to sustain outcomes
  • Engagement with a community organization
  • Ability to complete meaningful work in the 18-month timeframe
  • Experience and composition of the team
  • Level of student involvement

For more information on this year’s challenge, as well as past Marquette President’s Challenge competitions, see


Challenge Timeline

June 1, 2022        Application materials available (application and check-in form)

June 16, 2022      Faculty and community networking session (4:30-6pm, 707 HUB,

                             1102 West Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee, WI - Register here.)

July 28, 2022        Information Sessions for President’s and Chancellor’s Challenge 

Aug. 15, 2022      Check-in forms due from teams intending to apply (check-in form)

Aug.-Sept.            Consultation/coaching sessions to assist with project development

Sept. 22, 2022      Budget development workshop (10am, email here for calendar invite) (budget template)

Oct. 7, 2022          Proposals due (application)

Jan. 2023              Expected start date for funded projects



Please email questions to