UW-Whitewater officials announced Thursday a major donation the university said would pay for a new administrator who would work as a liaison between UW-Whitewater and Rock County businesses.

The “substantial” donation from philanthropists and former Janesville residents Quint and Rishy Studer would pay for a full-time director of strategic engagement based at UW-Whitewater at Rock County in Janesville, the university said.

According to a university release, the person hired would help connect businesses and industries in Rock County with “the necessary resources on campus to broaden opportunities and create partnerships.”

A director of strategic engagement would play a “key role” in curriculum development and would implement programs, courses and certifications tailored to Rock County businesses.

According to a job description provided by UW-Whitewater, the director would work through the chancellor’s office. The position would pay between $65,000 and $99,000 annually.

UW-Whitewater did not disclose the amount the Studers donated to support the new position, but it’s being considered a partnership between the university and the Studer Community Institute, a nonprofit community-building and economic development organization.

Quint Studer, a former hospital and health care business consultant, graduated from UW-Whitewater in 1973. He and Rishy Studer live in Pensacola, Florida.

In 2012, the Studers established a $1 million scholarship fund at UW-Whitewater for Janesville School District students.

Quint Studer said in a statement that he sees higher education as playing a vital role in communities developing and retaining workforce talent.

He said he wants to invest in the continued revitalization of Rock County and Janesville. He considers his donation to UW-Whitewater, and the university-to-business coordinator it would support, to be in the same spirit as revitalization work that is occurring in downtown Janesville and downtown Beloit.

UW-Whitewater Chancellor Beverly Kopper said the university is “deeply committed to serving Rock County, the region and the state.”

“I believe this new position contributes to our shared vision and shows what can happen when we all dream big,” Kopper said.

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