Posse at K Turns Four; Nationally, 25

Kalamazoo College graduated its first group of Posse students in June 2013, its four-year orange-and-black anniversary in a national program that, in November, celebrates its silver anniversary.

K was the first Michigan school to partner with the Posse Foundation (with the organization’s Los Angeles chapter). The program finds students with academic and leadership potential who might otherwise be overlooked by traditional admissions metrics, gives them several months of training, and sends them off to elite undergraduate institutions in groups of 10 to 12 other students from the same city. The program also provides support for the students once they are on campus. Seeing K’s first 10 Posse graduates and their parents—and their tears—at K’s 2013 commencement, says Jon Stryker ’82, was very moving. “It’s not often you can give a gift that changes a life.” Stryker made a gift to K to support the first five years of the program. Posse at K will persist beyond those five years, and support for the program is a focus of K’s fundraising effort, “The Campaign for Kalamazoo College.”

In late October, the Chronicle of Higher Education published an article about the Posse Program’s 25th anniversary (“A Quarter-Century of ’’Posses’’ Underscores the Power of the Cohort,” by Libby Sander). The article quotes Kalamazoo College President Eileen B. Wilson-Oyelaran.