The West Michigan Alliance Program is a special initiative of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) that provides forums for the public and private sectors to network, share ideas, discuss industry issues and explore retail development opportunities. For a little more background on the ICSC, it is the global trade association of the retail real estate industry, and provides its members with education, research, information and advocacy services.

This year they are introducing a new program for students. Phi Chi Theta Alumna Fran Spencer (Chicago Alumni Chapter) informed the group about Phi Chi Theta and they are offering a special opportunity for Phi Chi Theta students to participate. The March program will feature a report by GVSU Professor Paul Sicilian on the economic impact of ArtPrize, as well as a thorough presentation on Michigan’s structural deficit, and panels on urban development projects and unique Brownfield redevelopment projects.

This year they are introducing a sponsorship program for students which covers the annual membership fee of $50, and then allows the students to attend this event for $15. They are hoping to draw as many Phi Chi Theta students as possible and are looking for contacts with teachers/departments who can help get the word out to the students regarding this opportunity.

Attached is a letter explaining the sponsorship opportunity along with the agenda and a membership application for students to fill out.

If interested please contact Anne Marie Bessette at or (616)456-3797

Anne Marie Bessette
Downtown Development Authority
300 Monroe NW
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 456-3797