The Commons is a collaboration between Southeast Wisconsin's businesses and academic institutions formed to augment campus learning with hands-on, project-based skills development. Students form interdisciplinary teams to work on real-world projects that build experience and develop the fundamental skills necessary to create new ventures or innovate within an existing company.

It's one of the largest efforts of its kind and it's changing the economic potential of Southeast Wisconsin. If you're a student interested in joining, a mentor that wants to help or a local business looking to connect with tomorrow's premier talent, follow the link below...


The commons creates:

New ventures

The best way for students to develop entrepreneurial skills is to actually launch a startup. We bring these ideas to life with mentoring, professional connections and access to capital resources.

A Talent Pipeline

Not everyone needs to be a CEO. Business challenges from local companies give students the opportunity to hone their entrepreneurial skills while on the fast-track to getting hired. 

Economic growth

The Commons attracts the best and brightest minds, arms them with entrepreneurial skills and retains them in Southeast Wisconsin. We are helping shape the region's economic ecosystem.


participating schools

Alverno College 
Bryant & Stratton College
Cardinal Stritch University
Carroll University
Carthage College
Concordia University
Gateway Technical College

Lakeland College
Marquette University
Medical College of Wisconsin
Milwaukee Area Technical College
Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design
Mount Mary University

UW-Washington County
Waukesha County Technical College
Wisconsin Lutheran College