'Swing-State' Wisconsin: Government, Politics, and Participation

Upcoming dates (1)

Registration closed

Contact Anita Laabs at anita.laabs@wisc.edu or

For registration assistance: 608-890-3260


Wisconsin historically and currently is a key state at the center of political debate and processes involving U.S. local, state and national politics/governance.  In the last several presidential election cycles, the margin of victory for the candidate who won the state’s electoral votes was very close; hence the term ‘swing-state.’   The upcoming 2024 national election cycle is now beginning,  including election for president of the United States.  Milwaukee is hosting the Democratic Party presidential nominating convention in July of 2024 which will bring additional focus to the state.  Wisconsin presents a useful fulcrum point to explore important political issues, processes, and players including institutions, organizations, and individuals who aim to shape politics and policy for the future.  This course provides an overview of the State’s place in the federal system of constitutional and political processes with a focus on pressing issues involving national, local, and international policy and debates.  Such issues will include education, health care, foreign policy, international trade, immigration, human rights and election reform. 

In addition to regular instructor overviews and directed interactive learning sessions, students will meet with scholars and political professionals who work in Madison, the State capitol.  As a pre-collegiate interactive study program, the instructor will also draw on his extensive experience in university advising and student professional coaching to present practical ‘toolkits’ to help further your work on issues and programs of interest to you (e.g., internships, volunteerism, jobs) and strategize as you select and apply to your preferred university/college undergraduate programs. 

Student profile

This course focuses on political science and different social and environmental phenomena that impact policies and processes. This course is run in partnership with the Department of Political Science at UW–Madison.

Course Instructor

Joel Clark advises students and helps facilitate internships and career development programming for the Political Science and Sociology departments, and International Studies majors. Joel teaches career development courses for Sociology and Political Science which are open to all majors, as well as the Wisconsin in Washington, DC preparatory courses.

Important dates

Application deadlines

Application opens: Nov. 29, 2022
Deadline: Apply by May 1, 2023

Tuition deadlines

The first half of tuition is due by May 15, 2023. The second half of tuition is due by June 1, 2023.

Upcoming dates (1)

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Program Questions?

Contact Anita Laabs at anita.laabs@wisc.edu or

Badger Precollege Program Overview