How it Works: Kalamazoo Promise Expands to Private Colleges

KALAMAZOO, Mich. ( June 10, 2014) — An exciting day as the program that allows Kalamazoo Public School students to achieve the dream of higher education, gets even bigger.

The Kalamazoo Promise was created in November, 2005. It guarantees free tuition to in-state public colleges and universities for kids who attend KPS from Kindergarten through 12th grade.

But Tuesday, officials announced it will expand to include 15 select private Michigan colleges.

“This is about choice, this is about opportunity and when you add more to the mix, it improves the mix,” said Janice Brown, Trustee with Kalamazoo Promise.

With the average private school tuition costing around $28,000 a year, it’s a huge financial commitment, but one the Michigan Colleges Alliance sees critical.

“Where a student decides to go really is the greatest predictor of whether they graduate and be successful,” added MCA President, Bob Bartlett.

“The kind of faculty interaction, eclectic experience they get on those campuses are tailor-made for some students and they will thrive in it.”

kzppHere’s how it works: The Kalamazoo Promise will take the average tuition it costs to attend the College of Literature, Science and Arts at the University of Michigan. Then, the Michigan Colleges Alliance will cover the difference.

“Our institutions aggressively raise private funds to support all students and that’s no different here,” explained Bartlett. “The very funds they raise will go in to support this package.”

This will not affect tuition for other students attending these private colleges, and admission standards will not be lowered.

Since 2005, it’s been a $54,000,000 investment which is already having a priceless return.

Students graduating in the 2015-2016 school year will be the first to take advantage of this expansion.

To look into applying for the Kalamazoo Promise, click here.

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