Kalamazoo Public School sixth-graders set to visit WMU this spring

contact: Deanne Puca
| WMU News

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—Western Michigan University students, faculty and staff are again gearing up to welcome local middle school students to campus for a day to participate in free activities on campus.

The program is in its eighth year and called Bronco BUDS—Building Unique Dynamic Students—is a partnership between WMU and Kalamazoo Public Schools to bring all sixth-grade students to campus for a day to get a firsthand look at college life and the opportunities available with a college education. More than 1,000 sixth-grade students in the KPS Class of 2023 will tour the University for a day on a school-by-school basis and participate in free activities on campus beginning Thursday, March 16, and continuing through the end of the month. The goal is to encourage early middle school students to set their sights on college and take advantage of the Kalamazoo Promise tuition scholarship program.


Participants in WMU's Bronco BUDS program.

Sixth-grade Kalamazoo Public School students visit WMU as part of the Bronco BUDS program.


During March, KPS will transport all of the district's sixth-graders to WMU for a day to engage in hands-on activities related to choosing a college career and to take a University tour. The latter includes visits to a classroom and residence hall. Students also eat lunch at a campus dining hall. KPS students are guided through their campus experience by WMU students and staff.

Many of the college-student guides are Kalamazoo Promise scholarship recipients themselves. These Student Ambassadors often vary in the majors and careers that they are pursuing, and their involvement in the program is key in helping students learn about the various areas of study and career paths they can pursue if they enroll in college.

The Bronco BUDS effort is reinforced with programs each year that continue as students move toward high school graduation.

For more information, contact Siobhan Williams, graduate assistant for the WMU Office of Diversity and Inclusion, at siobhan.m.williams@wmich.edu or (269) 387-6325.

For more WMU news, arts and events, visit wmich.edu/news.