BCU Congratulates Grand Valley State University on its $10.3 Million Grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation


June 6, 2024

GVSU will move to a building owned by BCU and expand programming in Battle Creek.

BATTLE CREEK, MICH – Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) congratulates Grand Valley State University (GVSU) on the $10.3 million grant award from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), announced on June 3, 2024. The funds will be used to expand GVSU’s activities in downtown Battle Creek, which will include new educational programming and community outreach. GVSU will utilize the Kendall Center, which BCU acquired in July 2022.

This announcement builds on a 2019 grant from WKKF to GVSU, which provided $15.5 million for the university to partner with Battle Creek Public Schools (BCPS). GVSU provided teacher mentoring, support for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) curriculum development, and career pathway exploration for high-paying, high-demand jobs in STEM and healthcare.

In May 2024, BCPS became the first public school district to join the Eighth Grade Pathways to GVSU Program, which provides qualifying students opportunities for early admission to Grand Valley upon graduation. Participants gain access to recruitment events and college-preparedness workshops provided by faculty and staff members. University leaders surprised eighth grade students with the announcement during a promotion ceremony held at the Battle Creek STEM Innovation Center on May 29, 2024

The new WKKF grant will allow GVSU to add degree programming, starting with courses for the Bachelor of Applied Science. GVSU will also provide in-person learning as well as remote courses through its OMNI platform for continuing education. Courses will be offered in person at the Kendall Center, located on West Jackson Street in the heart of downtown Battle Creek.

In 2022, BCU purchased the Kendall Center from Western Michigan University (WMU) following WMU’s decision to consolidate operations in Battle Creek at the expanded Aviation Education Center at the Battle Creek Executive Airport. The building is located a block away from the new DoubleTree by Hilton Battle Creek and across the street from the headquarters of WK Kellogg Co and Kellanova’s Battle Creek campus. The BCU team has been working closely with WKKF and GVSU as they develop plans for the building. Renovations to the building’s first floor will add a cafe, offices, classrooms, and multi-purpose spaces.

BCU President & CEO Joe Sobieralski remarked, “This is the latest move in the ongoing effort to revitalize downtown Battle Creek. Having GVSU in the Kendall Center returns the property to productive use and will bring people back to downtown. It also creates new partnership opportunities. For example, the Food Reimagined initiative may be able to collaborate with GVSU on programs on entrepreneurship, nutrition, and sustainability. This is a great use of the space, and I am grateful to the Kellogg Foundation for their continued generosity.”

Renovations to the Kendall Center will begin this summer and are expected to be complete in late 2025.



Established in 1972, Battle Creek Unlimited (BCU) is a private, non-profit corporation which serves as the economic development arm for the City of Battle Creek and manages the Fort Custer Industrial Park. The Fort Custer Industrial Park is home to over 80 businesses, including 25 international companies, and employs over 13,000 people. BCU’s mission is to build a strong community by driving strategic investment and job creation.


Joe Sobieralski

President & CEO

Battle Creek Unlimited

TEL 269-962-752



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