Photos – “Armen Award” Innovation Competition


[Updated] After seven months of collaboration, creative thinking, and hard work, the final 7 teams made their pitch on Tuesday, April 19th, to be crowned champions of GRCC’s first ever Innovation Competition! Our judges, representing the Sustainability Council, had their work cut out for them as each team built a strong case for their idea, but in the end 3 teams stood out as those with the best balance of originality, feasibility, alignment to the problem statement, and collaboration among their team.

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In addition to the cash prize of $3,000, the winning team of Sara Yob, Elly Bainbridge, Vicki Hudson, Susan Goeman and Scott Dittenber will see their idea – called “Ride-Share” implemented on campus this Fall.

Our 2nd place team of Renee Fortnam, Jeff Spoelman and Deb Bryde won $1,500 for their idea called “Energy-Mizer ” and the $750 3rd place award went to Mark Dodd and team for a solar-panel retrofit on the 3rd floor of the ATC.

Fast Facts:
The problem: How could GRCC reduce its energy costs, so those savings could be directed towards student success programs?

The process: Each champion submitted an idea and created a team consisting of faculty, students and staff.
There were two rounds of competition. Out of 20 ideas submitted in Round 1, the Top 10 were chosen last December and each team won $100 and a chance to move onto Round 2. In Round 2, teams had to build a case for their idea – and present written, video, and oral support.

The pitch: Each of the 7 teams competed in the final round of judging on Tuesday, April 19.  Full video will be available in GRCC Today tomorrow.

How do I edit or create my Bio on the GRCC Webpage?

Starting this week, the webteam will be featuring ‘how-to’ segments to help you in keeping your web pages fresh and up-to-date. This week’s feature deals with biographies.  This week: How do I edit or create my Bio on the GRCC Webpage?

  1. Log in to Drupal at with your Novell username and password.
  2. In the left-hand Navigation, Click on Recent Posts (left side)
  3. Click on the tab My Recent Posts (middle of page)
  4. Click on your bio (actually click on your name)

Questions? email

GRCC in the News: 4/23/11-4/25/11

About 350 people attend first day of visitation for slain Kalamazoo officer Eric Zapata
Published: Sunday, April 24, 2011, 9:35 PM | Rex Hall Jr. | Kalamazoo Gazette

KALAMAZOO — About 350 people, including police and firefighters, paid their respects Sunday at Langeland Family Funeral Home during the first day of visitation for slain Kalamazoo Department of Public Safety Officer Eric Zapata.  (More)

After plea, groups to hold second school board candidate debate
Published: Thursday, April 21, 2011, 5:03 PM | Monica Scott The Grand Rapids Press

GRAND RAPIDS – Three community nonprofits have responded to a plea for more public forums from Grand Rapids school board candidate Raynard Ross. [… Raynard] Ross, director of Grand Rapids Community College’s Upward Bound program, a pre-college program for low-income and potential first generation students, said he’s pleased his message resonated with the organizations.  (More)

In GRCC board race, Fred Sebulske and Richard Stewart are leaders in spending
Published: Saturday, April 23, 2011, 10:00 AM | Dave Murray | The Grand Rapids Press

GRAND RAPIDS – Former Grand Rapids Community College professor Fred Sebulske has raised the most money in a race for a spot on the college’s board of trustees, but he’s being outspent by former Cornerstone University professor Richard Stewart.  (More)

GRCC’s Women’s Tennis Coach Retires

Coach Katerberg 2011After 19 years as the head coach of the GRCC women’s tennis team, head coach Sue Katerberg is retiring. Katerberg began her playing career at GRJC in  1985.

In her two seasons of competition with JC, she finished 5th in the nation in doubles and singles. After her player career at GRJC ended, she began her coaching career as an assistant coach under Skip Nelson in 1987. In 1992, she took over as the head coach.

Financial Planning for Financial Security for Employees

VALIC Financial Advisors are offering a seminar on Planning for Financial Security. The seminar will provide information, tools and resources to help make financial planning simpler. You can register for the seminar in one of the following ways: 1) go to, use registration code: 8393KAL11AA; 2) call 1-800-426-3753; or 3) contact Dave Ferwerda at 800-892-5558 Ext. 88125.

Topics covered will be on Financial Planning and Wealth Preservation. The speaker is Attorney David Carrier. Date: Thursday, April 28, 2011
Time: 6:00 PM-8:00 PM
Location: Fifth Third Ballpark-Pepsi Stadium Club

Please RSVP using one of the above methods.

Information on Donating on Behalf of Fallen Officer Eric Zapata

Recently, alumus of GRCC’s Criminal Justice program PSO Eric Zapata was killed in the line of duty serving with the Kalamazoo Police Department.  For those interested in contributing to the “PSO Eric Zapata Memorial Fund” (created as part of the Cuff and Ladder Fund, which assists the families of fallen police officers and firefighters) on behalf of Officer Zapata, donations can be made at any Lake Michigan Credit Union branch office, or mailed to this address:

The PSO Zapata Memorial Fund
PO BOX 325
Schoolcraft, MI 49087

In addition, visitation for Zapata is scheduled for 4 to 8 p.m. Sunday and again from 1 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. Monday at Langeland Family Funeral Homes, Westside Chapel, 3926 S. Ninth St., in Oshtemo Township and a funeral is scheduled for 11 a.m. Tuesday at Miller Auditorium on the campus of Western Michigan University. A private burial service for Zapata is scheduled for Wednesday in Lake Odessa.  More information on Officer Zapata can be found at his Officer Down Memorial Page.

Reminder: Dick Foster & Chris Foster Retirement Party Tomorrow

A retirement reception to honor Dick Foster and Chris Foster will be held on Tuesday, April 26, 2011 from 2:30pm to 4:30pm in the Multi Purpose room of the Student Center. Between these two individuals they have 80 combined years of service! Dick Foster will be retiring with 50 years of service to the college. The Electronics department  Business departments both hope you will be able to join us in celebrating with them.

Terry Simmons Retires From Computer Applications

Terry Simmons Retirement Party

Last week Friday, a retirement dinner was held for Terry Simmons in the Bistro. Fun was had by all, and she will be missed by the Computer Applications department (even though she’ll be seen from time to time). More so then us missing her, the students will miss her dedication and genuine teaching. She’s one of a kind, and has made a permanent mark on our department.

If you missed the dinner, it’s not too late to stop and Thank her! Thank you Terry!

Congratulations to Dick Foster on 50 Years of Service

Dick FosterRecognize this guy? Dick Foster (Electronics) is retiring after 50 years of service to GRCC! Please come and wish him AND Chris Foster (Business), who is retiring after 30 years, the best of luck in the next phase in their lives.

The retirement reception will be held Tuesday, April 26th from 2:30pm to 4:30pm. in the Multipurpose Room of the Student Center.

Thanks From Nan Schichtel

This message came from Nan Schichtel in the Library:

“Sincere thanks to my thoughtful GRCC colleagues for the kindnesses extended to my brothers and me upon the death of our mother, Esther Schichtel.  The cards and messages, funeral home visits, flowers, and donations in her honor are much appreciated.

Sincerely, Nan Schichtel”