If you are a high school senior or college freshman interested in applying to the First Wave Program, please fill out the inquiry form further down on this page.

For future reference on how to apply for First Wave, please note the three steps below:




If you have any questions, please email us at

STEP ONE: Fill out the Inquiry Form! You must first fill out this mandatory form in order to apply to the First Wave Program. With this information, we are able to track and prioritize your UW-Madison admissions application.

STEP TWO: Apply for admission to UW-Madison here! In order to move onto step three, you must first submit your UW-Madison admissions application and wait for an email within 48 hours that will give you your UW-Madison 10-digit Campus ID number (starting with 90-). This will be required to submit your First Wave application in step three. Please pay close attention to the UW-Madison Admission Application Materials List.

STEP THREE: Apply to First Wave! Step one and step two must be completed before submitting your First Wave application, which consists of

1) background information,

2) four short essays,

3) two to three art samples,

     *Please upload 2-3 art samples to your application that are a clear representation of your artistic passion and gifts that you will be bringing into the First Wave community. Samples may come in the form of video (YouTube or Vimeo links only), written text (.pdf format), or photos (.jpg format). Art samples can be of the same medium, but do not have to be. If you are emailing art sample files, please email them as attachments to writing "FW11 Applicant: [Full Name] [Campus ID number].

4) and two letters of recommendation (at least one from someone that can speak about your artistic talent(s).  The 2 recommendations should be emailed directly to as attachments.

The scholarship application will be available
August 1, 2016, for the 11th cohort of First Wave (beginning Fall 2017)

Fill out the First Wave application here!

*The UW-Madison Admissions Application, the First Wave Application, and all required materials for each of these applications, are due by October 15, 2016. Please start the process early in order to guarantee completion by the October 15th deadline and we encourage you to submit as early as possible. Allow yourself enough time to complete both applications and the required materials.

If you have any questions, please email us at