The name and acronym - Participatory Learning and Teaching Organization, or PLATO - defines us well.

PLATO is a self-directed, volunteer-led, nonprofit organization serving more than 900 lifelong learners living in and around Dane County.  Most members are approaching or actively enjoying retirement.  All share a passion for learning and a desire to stay engaged with the world and with others who share their interests. No formal education or university affiliation is necessary to join.

If you enjoy self-directed, volunteer-led lifelong learning, PLATO is an ideal way to learn, contribute to others’ learning, enjoy new experiences, and meet new friends.

Members enjoy:

  • 40 or more participatory courses each fall and spring
  • Lectures, socials and special events
  • Guest Courtesy Card from UW Libraries (a $50 value)
  • Member newsletter, weekly emails, and program catalogs

Plato is about more than information.  It’s about interactions.  Meet other people with curious minds through classes, special events, bus trips, and member committees.

“We especially value the in-depth friendships we’ve already made, the intelligent curiosity and openness of the people we’ve met, and the wide range of classes.”

PLATO is a member run organization

PLATO is a 501(c)(3) organization run by its members who contribute their time and effort to carry out the administrative tasks. It is affiliated with the Division of Continuing Studies of the University of Wisconsin–Madison (UW-DCS), which provides programmatic and administrative support.

PLATO members share their expertise, skills, and talents to keep the organization strong and vibrant. We are always looking for more members to help keep PLATO running. If you would like to become involved in PLATO’s administration, contact any Board Director or Committee Chair.

Learn more about the History of PLATO

PLATO Turns 30!

In 2017 PLATO marked its 30th anniversary with the largest course line-up and roster of lectures, trips, and other special events we've ever offered.

Jeff Russell, Vice Provost for Lifelong Learning & Dean of UW-Madison Continuing Studies is offering his congratulations and thanks to PLATO for our 30th Anniversary.  Click here to view or here to read a transcript of his message.


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For more info about PLATO contact:

PLATO Office Operations, ATTN: Edie or Louise
c/o UW-Madison Continuing Studies
21 N. Park St, 7th Floor, Madison, WI 53715

Email: info@platomadison.org
Phone: 608-262-5823
Fax: 608-265-4555

PLATO is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization

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