Odyssey grads

Odyssey’s 20th Anniversary

The 2022-2023 academic year will be the official 20th anniversary of the UW Odyssey Project, and we have planned some fun ways to mark this special year! Please join us in celebrating the incredible students and staff members that have made the past 20 years possible. Odyssey has grown tremendously since its inception in 2003, and we are all excited to see what Odyssey’s future has in store. We’d like to thank our 20th anniversary presenting sponsor, American Family Insurance. We’d also like to thank our event sponsors and partners, Cuna Mutual Group, Madison Gas and Electric, Summit Credit Union, Custer Burish Financial Services, UW Credit Union, A Fund for Women, American Players Theatre (APT), and Dane Arts, for helping with funding for these events and more! If you’d like to support the program as we venture on in transforming lives and helping students unwrap their gifts, please visit our Support page below.

Support the UW Odyssey Project

Celebrating 20 years (April 20)

Join us in celebrating Odyssey’s 20 years of life-changing impact, and help us look forward toward the future! Enjoy appetizers, drinks, opening remarks by Chancellor Mnookin, music by Kinfolk (featuring Odyssey alumni),  and inspiring remarks from extraordinary Odyssey alumni spanning two decades of our program as well as from Odyssey champions such as the Honorable Judge Everett Mitchell. Special thanks to the sponsors who are helping make this event possible, including American Family Insurance, Cuna Mutual Group, Custer Burish Financial Services, Summit Credit Union, and UW Credit Union.


When: Thursday, April 20, 2023 from 5-7 PM

Where: Chazen Museum of Art, Mead Witter Lobby

Cost: $20/ticket

Parking: State Street Campus Garage

Additional information: Your $20 ticket covers food and entertainment. Any additional tax-deductible donation you make before or at the event will support the Odyssey Future Fund to help ensure the long-term sustainability of our programs. A cash bar will also be available (*cash only).

Buy tickets here!

Odyssey Class of 2023 Graduation Ceremony (May 3)

Mark your calendars now to join us in person or via Zoom at the Great Hall of the Memorial Union for the joyful graduation ceremony of Odyssey’s 20th class on May 3, 2023, from 6-7:30 PM. Visit our graduation page for updated information!

Odyssey Class of 2023 Graduation Ceremony


Previous Odyssey Events

A Raisin in the Sun (September 18)

“Just tell me where you want to go to school and you’ll go. Just tell me what it is you want to be—and you’ll BE it. Whatever you want to be—Yessir! You just name it, son, and I hand you the world!”—Walter in A Raisin in the Sun

For all 20 years of Odyssey’s history, Odyssey students have acted out scenes from Lorraine Hansberry’s A Raisin in the Sun, the groundbreaking story of one Black family’s struggle on the southside of Chicago to achieve their dreams. Thanks to our partnership with American Players Theatre (APT), American Family Insurance Dreams Foundation, and Dane Arts, we will bring 100 Odyssey students to see a performance of the play for free, including a pre-show picnic dinner and engaging conversation with APT core company member Gavin Lawrence about his iconic role as Walter Lee. If you’d like to join, you can purchase your ticket below to be part of the fun! Make sure to use the promo code to get a seat near Odyssey students/staff and other supporters.


When: Sunday, September 18, at 6-9 pm

Where: American Players Theatre, Spring Green, Wisconsin (about 45 minutes away)

When purchasing tickets, please select the September 18th/6 PM showing for A Raisin in the Sun. Enter “Odyssey22” in the promo code box to receive a ticket near other Odyssey attendees!

Purchase your ticket(s)

Donate to Odyssey

A Raisin in the Sun

20 Years of Amplifying Odyssey Voices and Celebrating Voting (October 12)

Join us in person or via Zoom to celebrate Odyssey’s 20 years of empowering students to find their voices and change the world. We are planning a powerful evening featuring Odyssey student and alumni readings, a new film, and refreshments. We’d like to thank our event sponsors Madison Gas and Electric and Summit Credit Union for making this event possible.

This evening also will serve as our biennial “Why Vote?” event. Once again, we partner with the League of Women Voters, the Madison Public Library, the Urban League, and the Cap Times to encourage our students and the community to vote. Come cheer for democracy and for the winners of our Why Vote contest at a time when enfranchising marginalized communities seems more important than ever.


When: Wednesday, October 12, from 5:30-7:30 PM

*Main program will be 6-7 PM

Where: Memorial Union’s Great Hall or via Zoom

Who: This event is free and open to the public.

*Please be sure to register for updates, and to receive the Zoom link if you are interested in joining remotely!

Register here!


Odyssey Holiday Bazaar (December 3)

Many Odyssey students create handmade items such as jewelry, books, notecards, cookbooks, soap, and musical instruments. Start your holiday shopping early, support Odyssey artists and entrepreneurs, meet staff and students, and visit our new Odyssey space by attending our Odyssey Holiday Bazaar! We’d like to thank our event sponsor, A Fund for Women, for making this event possible.


When: Saturday, December 3, 1-4 PM

Where: South Madison Partnership space at 2238 S. Park St.

Why: Support local and small businesses while purchasing one-of-a-kind items!

Odyssey crafts

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