Class of 2020 to visit WMU for Bronco BUDS program

contact: Deanne Puca
| WMU News
Photo of participants in the Bronco Buds program in front of the Bernhard Center.

Previous Bronco Buds participants gather in front of the Bernhard Center.

KALAMAZOO—Kalamazoo Public Schools sixth graders who make up the Class of 2020 will tour Western Michigan University and participate in activities on campus in March and April so they can get a first-hand look at college life and the opportunities available through a college education.

For the fifth year in a row, WMU has opened its residence halls, classrooms and dining halls through a partnership with KPS called Bronco BUDS—Building Unique Dynamic Students. The program encourages early middle school students to set their sights on college and take advantage of the Kalamazoo Promise tuition scholarship program.

The goal of the program, which this year begins March 19, is to make sure all of the district's sixth-graders are transported 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 a visit to a classroom and residence hall, and the students also eat lunch at a campus dining hall. KPS students are guided through their college experience by WMU students and staff. Many of the college-student guides are Kalamazoo Promise scholarship recipients themselves.

Bronco BUDS is an annual program for KPS sixth-graders and one that is reinforced with programs each year, beginning with the Class of 2016 and continuing as these students move toward high school graduation.

Scheduled visits

  • Linden Grove Middle School: Wednesday, March 19, and Friday, March 21
  • Milwood Magnet School Center for Math, Science and Technology: Wednesday, March 26, and Friday, March 28
  • Maple Street Magnet School for the Arts: Monday, March 31, and Wednesday, April 2
  • Hillside Middle School: Wednesday, April 16, and Friday, April 18

For more information, contact Vanessa Laurent, doctoral graduate assistant for the WMU Office of Diversity and Inclusion, at or (269) 387-6325.