The State of Michigan is still the single largest provider of funding supporting the students of Western Michigan University. A robust and meaningful political action committee is critical in providing the University with the support and leverage it needs to make sure that the interests of our students are on the agenda in the state capitol.
FoWMU uses contributions it receives to support legislators who support WMU. We don't subscribe to the "strawberry jam" theory of spreading our support thin and broad, but target our contributions to those who are in a position to affect funding and legislation impacting our students. It is important to know that there is never a quid pro quo understanding. The FoWMU is about building relationships with legislators and policy makers so that we have the opportunities to deliver our message in a very crowded and noisy political environment.
Being successful in Lansing is about building and maintaining relationships with state legislators and policy makers. Building relationships with legislators is accomplished in two ways:
- Having a "feet-on-the-ground" presence working with legislators on legislation and helping them with constituent issues and concerns. This the University does quite well through its Office of Government Affairs and the Bronco Advocacy Network.
- Ensuring the University is represented in the electoral process that brings good legislators to Lansing–this is where the Friends of WMU comes in. FoWMU volunteers and donors can do what the University cannot do—represent the University in the electoral process by supporting good candidates that support education in Michigan. You can help!