RENEW Wisconsin Endowment for EAP Interns Still Paying Dividends

Don Wichert, EAP Alum (’87)

When it comes to supporting renewable energy, EAP alum (’87) Don Wichert tends to take the long view. In 1991, Wichert founded the non-profit RENEW Wisconsin with a mission to support renewable energy adoption in Wisconsin, at a time when renewable energy was barely on the radar of state policymakers. RENEW works on policies and programs across a range of renewables, and its growth has mirrored the burgeoning renewable energy industry in the past several years, going from a one full-time-person operation for nearly two decades to a staff of roughly a dozen in 2024.

With its connection to EAP from the start, RENEW had a history of hiring EAP students as interns to support its policy efforts. Seeking to extend that partnership in perpetuity, Wichert generously helped create and fund an endowment to sustain a paid internship position at RENEW exclusive to EAP students. Since the program’s inception, a handful of students have benefitted from the experience, with many students already working in the energy field after graduation for companies like OneEnergy Renewables and Rocky Mountain Institute. The EAP intern position supports many facets of RENEW’s mission, but generally revolves around researching energy policy and opportunities for renewable energy growth.

The latest intern position for an EAP student has just opened – click here for the official posting! We’re excited to see the impactful work EAP students will complete for RENEW, as well as the professional development RENEW provides for EAP students.


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