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The Office of Government Relations looks forward to supporting the University community 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Please call (269) 387-2072 to schedule an appointment or for immediate assistance, or use the Contact Us form to send a general inquiry email. 

Community Partnerships is a unit of the Office of Government Relations. 

Bronco Advocacy Network Newsletter

Learn more about the work of the Offices of Government Relations and Community Partnerships in the Bronco Advocacy Network newsletter. We welcome you to join the network by sending us a message.

Fall 2021

WMU celebrates the opening of Business Technology and Research Park North, Ascension Borgess Cancer Center

On September 15, 2021, Western Michigan University officially inaugurated its Business Technology and Research (BTR) Park North, situated alongside Drake Road between Parkview Avenue and Stadium Drive. This is the Northward Expansion of Western’s original business park that is operating at full capacity with 40 companies and more than 850 employees including 100 alumni. Over the past 20 years, the original BTR Park has attracted more than $150 million in investments, generated more than 1,400 jobs, and has helped to create numerous internships, co-ops, and other experiential learning opportunities.

"The Kalamazoo area has a long history in nurturing business, health care, education and technology. … When a community values its people, their education, and their future, it leads to advances like the expansion of the BTR and the opening of the Ascension Borgess Cancer Center," WMU President Edward Montgomery said at the event.

WMU collaborated with a variety of entities to make this a reality, including Oshtemo Township, Kalamazoo County Road Commission, Southwest Michigan First and the U.S. Economic Development Administration. Ascension Borgess Cancer Center is the new park’s first tenant and welcomed its first patients on Sep.20, 2021. The cancer center is one of the twelve Ascension Michigan comprehensive cancer care facilities across the state.  It offers medical oncology, hematology and infusion services in a multilevel, contemporary clinical space with a patient-centered wellness program, access to prevention and early detection programs, cancer education and a full array of support services among other amenities.

Read more at WMU News.

WMU Resiliency Center gets funding from state budget

With the help and support from Rep. Mary Whiteford, chair of Michigan House health committee, and WMU’s legislative delegation, Western’s Resiliency Center will receive $750,000 in one time funding through the 2022 state budget process.

The Michigan legislature has passed a balanced budget for fiscal year 2022 in late September with the help of Governor Gretchen Whitmer. Western’s allocation one-time, 1% increase which stands to 1.1 million dollars. This one-time funding increases the university’s ability to plan for long term strategies and future investments.  WMU would begin the 2022 fiscal year budget with an annual appropriation of approximately 111 million dollars. State universities received a one-time 3.9% payment through the ARP in order to maintain minimum levels of funding.

Read more at Bronco Advocacy Network.

WMU Establishes Formal Ties with Kalamazoo Literacy Council

In order to improve the state of regional adult literacy, Western Michigan University and Kalamazoo Literacy Council have announced a new collaboration. The partnership was signed by WMU President Edward Montgomery; Associate Vice President for Community Partnerships, Kara Wood; and Michael Evans, executive director of the Kalamazoo literacy council. This helps to formalize and strengthen the work of the two organizations that have been engaged together for the past decade.

Montgomery says, “Western Michigan University has had a history of dedicating efforts to promote civic engagement in our community. This agreement will help us to strengthen our efforts not only in civic engagement but in social responsibility and shared prosperity by formalizing our already robust collaboration with the Kalamazoo Literacy Council.”

The Kalamazoo Literacy Council a non-profit agency that is led by volunteers to provide free education services to adults with low literacy. Their programs include English as a second language, health literacy, parent literacy and workforce literacy. They also provide one-on-one tutoring, computer, writing and language classes to enable adults to reach their full potential as employees, parents and community members.

Read more at WMU News.