Western, Kalamazoo Literacy Council team up to boost adult literacy

KALAMAZOO, Mich. — Western Michigan University and the Kalamazoo Literacy Council announced a new collaboration Monday.

The formal partnership would strengthen the bond between the groups, allowing them to improve adult literacy more effectively in the Kalamazoo area, according to a statement from the Literacy Council.

“The Kalamazoo Literacy Council educates the public about the needs of adults who struggle to read,” said Michael Evans, executive director of the Kalamazoo Literacy Council. “One of our strategies is to build collaboration with our community partners, such as WMU. This agreement with WMU will help us to go even further in achieving our goal of making Kalamazoo County a fully literate community.”

Western Michigan University and the Kalamazoo Literacy Council have worked together since 2011 to develop services and opportunities to explore adult literacy instruction.

They’ve also developed new research opportunities for students in the field to discover more about the issue.

“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,” said WMU President Edward Montgomery.

Montgomery formally announced the partnership during his welcome address Friday at the 2021 Adult Literacy Research and Training Symposium.

The symposium was held at the Fetzer Center and online from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., and was free and open to the public.