By Alex Pauls
Because of her experiences studying art education within the College of Fine Arts, the soft-spoken Kylie Taft has come to love being a student at Western Michigan University.
The College of fine arts had 86.8 percent of its students return to school following their freshman year, that was the highest college-specific retention rate at Western Michigan in 2017. Taft, who is in her first semester at WMU, plans to stay because of the state of the art facilities and the classroom experiences she has had so far.
Click here to watch a video excerpt of the interview.
As a first-generation, first-year student, Kylie Taft has a 76 percent chance of returning to WMU after this year, compared to the 86 percent chance of a student who is not low-income or first-generation, according to a study done by the Pell Institute. The Pinckney, Mich. native is part of TRiO, a learning community that is funded by the U.S. Department of Education that helps first-generation, income eligible and students with disabilities complete their baccalaureate degrees, according to the TRiO page on WMU’s website.
TRiO asked Taft, 19, to design a t-shirt that would represent the organization. “They gave me the opportunity to design a t-shirt for them,” Taft said. “So like, as a freshman I didn’t expect something like that, like right off the bat.”