GRCC in the News – 12/16/11

Students, Colleagues Pay Tribute to Dr. Daniel Swets
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 15, 2011 | Augustana College

At a memorial service on Wednesday, Dr. Daniel Swets, associate professor and chair of computer science and mathematics, was remembered as a talented scientist and revered teacher who cared deeply about his students, his colleagues and, most of all, his family. […] From 1990-1991, he was an instructor at the Grand Rapids Community College and at Grand Valley State University. (More)

Raider Salute to Food Pantry Donors

This salute comes from Student Life, Student Congress and Campus Activities:

“Raider Salute to everyone who has donated to the GRCC Student Food Pantry; thank you all so much for your generous donations to the GRCC Student Food Pantry. Your kindness and donations will truly help students and their families in need and is a great start to helping get this food pantry off the ground.  Happy Holidays!”

Congratulations to Garry Brand – 2012 Outstanding eLearning Faculty Award Recipient


GRCC congratulates Garry Brand, professor in the Business Department and Lead Faculty Facilitator in the department of Distance Learning and Instructional Technologies!

Garry was selected to receive the 2012 Award for Outstanding eLearning Faculty from the Instructional Technology Council (ITC). (GRCC became members of this well known and respected organization this year.)

Each year ITC selects an exemplary faculty member who has implemented outstanding and innovative teaching and class management strategies with demonstrated course success and excellent student retention.

Garry’s nomination was reviewed and chosen by panels of judges that were comprised of members of the ITC board of directors, past award winners, attendees at ITCs annual leadership academy, and other ITC members.

This recognition is extremely well-deserved and highlights his commitment to faculty professional development, quality, student success, innovation, and exemplary online course delivery. Garry is recognized on the front page of ITC and can be viewed here:

Finally, he will have the opportunity to receive his award in person at a special luncheon at eLearning 2012, which will be held in Long Beach, California, on Feb. 18-21, 2012.

Distance Learning and Instructional Technologies Department

Holiday Breakfast Centerpieces Created by Fashion & Interiors Students

2011 Holiday Breakfast Centerpiece

This beautiful photo is just one of the 50 lovely and unique centerpieces created for the Employee Holiday Breakfast. These were all made by students from our Fashion & Interiors department under Sue Baglien’s instruction. Students LaTonya Mabon, Tonya Riva, Jill Daniels and Jacque Yskes spent many hours working on these beautiful pieces of art. What a wonderful way for them to apply their creative gifts and skills! We look forward to showing off the rest of the centerpieces at the Holiday Breakfast! See you there!

– The Holiday Breakfast Planning Team

Make The Yuletide Gay A Benefit Cabaret – 12/18/11


Actor’s Theatre will feature “Make the Yuletide Gay” – a benefit cabaret featuring Ellie Frances & Rob Karel with Todd Wilkie at the Piano at the Spectrum Theatre (160 Fountain Street) on December 18, 2011 at 7:00 p.m.  Tickets are $15 Adults, $10 Student/Senior and all proceeds benefit The Fred and Mickey Sebulske Scholarship Fund, The GRCC Scholarship Fund, and The Combined Theatre Scholarship Fund.

For tickets and information, (616)234-3946 or visit

Is GRCC Achieving the Dream?

Linda Spoelman, faculty representative to the Achieving The Dream (AtD) committee here at GRCC, is presenting an update on our efforts to date on the Reading Apprenticeship (RA) portion of AtD today at Dean’s Council. Here is a brief summary of Linda’s report:

Winter 2011 – Introduction to RA delivered at AFP learning day; reading faculty given more in-depth introduction to RA.

Fall 2011 Training

  1. RA training for all reading adjuncts–August 2011
  2. Three day RA training for 32 developmental faculty and staff, including tutor coordinators–Sept 29-Oct 1.
  3. In-depth study of RA adopted as topic for reading instructors’ Professional Reading Group. Meetings held in October and November.
  4. RA training delivered at English Department learning day to all full time and several adjunct department members–Oct. 7.
  5. RA follow up workshop on questioning offered to those who attended the Sept/Oct. training–November 4.
  6. Fall 2011 Assessment: Zoomerang survey assessing instructor perception of RA effectiveness delivered to the workshop attendees–December 4.

IT Holiday Hours

The GRCC IT Customer Support Desk will be open 7 AM – 5 PM Friday, December 16th, as well as Monday-Thursday December 19 through December 23.

The Customer Support Desk will be closed for the holiday shut down, December 24 through January 2. We will re-open on January 3rd.

If you have any questions, contact the IT Support Desk at 234-HELP(4357)

Happy Holidays, From GRCC IT Customer Support!

Condolences to the Family and Colleagues of Daniel Swets

Dr. Daniel Lee Swets, age 47, of Sioux Falls, SD, passed away December 9, 2011, as the result of a charter plane crash near Sioux Falls. Born September 1, 1964 in Chicago Illinois, Dan was the son of Kenneth and Rosemary (Engbers) Swets. […] From 1987 to 1992, he was an aerospace software engineer at Smiths Industries, Grand Rapids, working on embedded software for flight systems and ground station software. From 1990 to 1991, he was an instructor at the Grand Rapids Community College and at Grand Valley State University, Allendale, Mich.

[…] Funeral services will be Friday, December 16 at 11 a.m. at Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Sioux Falls, SD, with interment at Woodlawn Cemetery following. Visitation will be Thursday at Heritage Funeral Home in Sioux Falls from 12 to 8 p.m., with the family present from 6 to 8 p.m.

The full obituary is available here.

GRCC in the News – 12/14/11

Five GRCC football players earn NJCAA All-America honors after unbeaten season
Published: Tuesday, December 13, 2011, 10:00 AM | Grand Rapids Press

Five Grand Rapids Community College football players have received prestigious postseason honors. The National Junior College Athletic Association released its 2011 football All-America teams on Monday and the unbeaten Raiders were well represented.  (More)

Raider Salute to Chef Marcia Rango and SICE Student Katie O’Neil

cake decorate (Small)

This Salute came from Kate Byerwalter in the Behavioral Sciences department:

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Chef Marcia Rango and student Katie O’Neil helped my daughter decorate a cake for my daughter’s 11th birthday. Chef Rango and her student Katie did a fabulous job of teaching tips and helping my daughter (Emma Byerwalter) and her friend (Lauren Kunnen) create a “Lego” cake to celebrate their lego team making it to the State tournament this past weekend. Emma and Lauren will be sharing the cake tonight at the Jenison Public School Board meeting, where the lego teams are being recognized.

I was so impressed by Chef Rango’s patience and instruction, and Katie’s positive attitude and suggestions. A good time was had by all!

Thank you,
Kate Byerwalter

Psychology Lecture on Micro-Aggressions – Video

Last week, GRCC’s Psychology Department Speaker Series hosted a presentation by Social Worker Lois Smith Owens, MSW, MA, on how we “constantly use micro-aggressions as a way to devalue and demean those that we are ‘different’ from.”

Despite the public’s demand for transparency and truthful communications, according to Owens,  many individuals frequently use small, yet very hurtful, “micro-aggressions” in our communications.  The presentation was titled “I Didn’t Do Anything to Make You Feel That Way – How We Communicate Without Saying Anything” and is available online courtesy of the Media Technologies Department:

Holiday Breakfast an Opportunity to Help Stock the Student Food Pantry

At our upcoming Holiday breakfast, bring along something from the list below to help stock our new GRCC Food Pantry for students and their families who are in need.  Donors will be entered into a special drawing at the breakfast for a chance to win a fantastic prize.  Help us love our students well this Holiday season.

Student Food Pantry List of Needed Items: Continue reading