Boardwalk Academy 2020

Get Involved | Have Your Voice Heard | Make A Difference

United Way’s Boardwalk Academy is an exciting 7-week, personal & professional development series. Stipends of $25/hour may be available to participants.

Deadline for our Fall cohort: Friday, August 14, 2020 | 5:00 pm

Click here to state your interest in joining the Fall cohort.

Are you an adult (18+) who has worked your way through financial challenges like any of the following?

  • Eviction or Homelessness
  • Relying on a food pantry to feed your family
  • Unemployment or underemployment that led to an unstable living situation
  • No access to quality, affordable childcare

Are you interested in using your experiences to help make decisions regarding local social support services?

  • Are you a natural problem solver?
  • Are you trusted and respected by your friends and neighbors because you keep everyone informed and inspired?
  • Are you a leader in your family or circle of friends?
  • Do you voluntarily connect people in your circles to resources?
  • Do you often speak on the speak behalf of others?

If so, you may be a perfect fit for United Way of Dane County’s Boardwalk Academy! 

Due to the overwhelmingly positive response we received following the 2019 redesign of United Way’s Boardwalk Academy, this year we will offer two sessions:  Spring 2020 and Fall 2020!



Boardwalk Academy is a key strategy in support of United Way of Dane County’s commitment to engage and involve diverse communities – especially those that are racially and ethnically diverse – in decision-making, leadership, and action to achieve equitable outcomes in Education, Income and Health. Through this program we:

  • Strengthen community capacity by offering barrier-free personal/professional development opportunities to members of a specific target audience, those having expressed an interest or demonstrated the potential to serve as in/formal community leaders.
  • Strengthen community capacity by supporting the placement of non-traditional leaders – those with the critical voices and perspectives that are commonly absent from decision-making tables – into volunteer and paid leadership positions across our community.
  • Support the collective commitment of organizations (businesses, public entities and nonprofit organizations) in our strategic efforts to strengthen diversity and inclusion initiatives.


Boardwalk Academy sessions are held at the Anderson United Way Center located at 2059 Atwood Avenue in Madison, Wisconsin. Each cohort runs for seven consecutive Thursday evenings from 5:30 – 7:30 pm. A celebratory completion ceremony is held on the final Thursday of each cohort.

Fall 2020

September 10 – October 22 (Session Dates:  September 10, 17, 24; October 1, 8, 15, 22)
Fall Completion Ceremony:  October 29, 2020

Spring 2021

More information on session dates in Spring 2021 to come!