$pending o counter ‘elitist’ perception

Andrew Bahl:

The University of Wisconsin-Madison plans to launch a statewide marketing campaign to change public attitudes that the school is too “elitist” and “leftist” in hopes for more state funding, documents show.

In documents seeking applications from private vendors to produce the initiative, UW-Madison said it wanted a campaign that would combat “misperceptions among state residents about the university and higher education in general.”

The chief goal, however, would be a favorable outcome next year, when the Legislature’s budget writers and Gov. Tony Evers will negotiate a new budget to cover Wisconsin’s state government until 2027.

“Primary mark of success will be a positive state budget for UW-Madison in the next budget biennium,” a university document answering questions about the project said.

The UW said it is looking to double its media spending as part of the campaign, with the total cost of producing and airing the ads expected to be around $1 million. UW-Madison spokesperson Kelly Tyrrell said the campaign will be privately funded.