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Grand Rapids native Dann Sytsma has long wondered why it's customary for companies to offer new employee orientation, but not so for communities to provide such training for its new residents. That question has led him to launch the "Welcome to Kalamazoo" show during downtown Kalamazoo's Art Hops. The next one is May 4.

Evgeniya (Jane) Kozhevnikova

The WMU Symphony Orchestra will present the 59th Annual Concerto Concert as its last concert of the 2017–18 season on Sunday, April 22 at 3 p.m. in Miller Auditorium.  The three soloists - trombonist William Ford, alto saxophonist Andrew Keating, and marimbist Evan Leffert - joined Cara Lieurance in the studio to talk about their backgrounds, and how they prepared for the concert.

Sehvilla Mann / WMUK

Western's Trustees also revised the school's policy for staff who work with minors, and approved a three percent increase in room and board rates. 

Graduate students who teach at Western Michigan University say they’re unhappy with the contract terms the school has offered. Members of the Teaching Assistants Union packed a Trustees meeting on Wednesday. They told the Board that students who teach at Western struggle to support themselves on their wages.

Michael Markowski

On Thursday night, the Western Michigan University Symphonic Band will finish its season with the world premiere of a new piece by special guest composer Michael Markowski, and the audience-pleasing Suite from Star Wars, by John Williams. Dr. Scott Boerma, director of bands at Western Michigan University joins Cara Lieurance to preview the 50th annual Spring Conference on Wind and Percussion Music, a day-long event including workshops, demonstrations, and two afternoon band concerts presented by the Three Rivers High School Symphony Band and the Portage Central High School Symphonic Band. The conference culminates in a free public concert in Miller Auditorium at 7:30 pm by the Michael Markowski All-Star Band and the WMU Symphonic Band.

Dr. Boerma describes the new work, Amor Fati by Michael Markowski, which will get its world premiere on Thursday night. The composer, a rising young American talent, will be on hand to help prepare the piece and witness the concert.

AP Photo

The word "literary" doesn't usually come to mind when thinking about U.S. presidents. But the nation's 26th president most definitely was a "literary man." So argue Western Michigan University professors Thomas Bailey and Katherine Joslin in their new book, Theodore Roosevelt: A Literary Life (University Press of New England, 2018).