The Upjohn Institute plays a leading role in research, evaluation, and community mobilization activities surrounding the Kalamazoo Promise, an unprecedented experiment in community development that guarantees full college scholarships to potentially every graduate of the Kalamazoo Public Schools (KPS).
Announced in November 2005 and funded by a group of anonymous donors, the Kalamazoo Promise is the first of a growing number of Promise-type programs nationwide. Read more about the Kalamazoo Promise.
Institute staff members conduct research on the Kalamazoo Promise and related programs, with findings presented in books, papers, and presentations for a variety of audiences.
- Data collection
As the central repository of data covering KPS and comparison districts, the housing market, and the regional economy, the Institute collaborates with other stakeholders to develop and disseminate useful measures of the program’s impact.
The Institute assists other organizations and communities interested in replicating elements of the Kalamazoo Promise, carrying out contracted studies that cover feasibility, impact, and cost.
- Community mobilization
The Institute plays a key role in convening community stakeholders around the linked issues of education and economic development, and Institute staff members participate in a variety of efforts to align and mobilize the Greater Kalamazoo community around the regional economic goals of the Kalamazoo Promise.