Ford Early Learning Center

2440 Clark Road

Ypsilanti, MI 48198

Phone: (734) 221-1800

Ford Early Learning Center

Melissa Calabrese, Site Coordinator

E-Mail: mcalabrese5[at]

Phone: (734) 487-0372

Melissa Calabrese thoroughly enjoys spending time with her “Bright Futures family” which allows her to work with Ford students and families, teachers and staff, college students, and community members.  She is passionate about promoting healthy communities through positive student development; and she values the opportunity to work with a dynamic team of motivated and creative individuals whom encourage and prepare students to be successful.  Melissa graduated with an English degree from Rutgers University and earned a M.A. from Eastern Michigan University.  Her professional experiences include working as an EMU GEAR UP Site Coordinator, a 21stCCLC Site Facilitator in New Brunswick, NJ, as well as teaching team initiatives, nutrition, water conservation, and photography to community members through programs such as NJPIRG, AmeriCorps, and the Chai Project.  She loves having the opportunity to be creative with her students and appreciates all that she learns from them, too.  When not at work, Melissa enjoys being active outdoors and spending time with her family.

Program Description

EMU Bright Futures is thrilled to be a part of the Ford Early Learning Center community!  We strive to offer a positive atmosphere, enriched with supportive staff and community partners, by providing opportunities for kindergarten and first-grade students to explore, learn, have fun and participate in community building and leadership activities.


The program runs Monday through Thursday, directly after school until 5:45 p.m.  It includes snack and supper, academic time, various clubs (such as superheros-in-training, Tinkerlab, team sports, and drama), and weekly special guests.  During the academic time, Bright Futures staff and a Ford ELC teacher are available to help students complete their homework from the school day, as well as provide engaging activities with embedded literacy, math, and science learning opportunities to students who do not have homework.


Family events and trips are frequently offered including the opportunity to go to the theater and sports events, join us for Thrilling Thursday guests, participate in math night activities, view student work, and share meals together.


We also offer a six-week summer program that runs Monday through Thursday from mid-June to late July.


If you are interested in adding your student to the EMU Bright Futures at Ford wait list, please complete a Bright Futures interest form and return it to the main office.


Contact Us

Send us an email





203 Boone Hall

Ypsilanti, MI 48197

lmalinoff [at]

(734) 487-0372

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