GRCC in the News, 12-4-13

Nancy Ayres conveys growth

Dec. 3, 2013; Grand Rapids Business Journal

At a time when the bottom line for many businesses in Grand Rapids took a drubbing, Nancy Ayres broke the mold.

… She is a strong advocate for workplace development, having played an active role for several regional organizations: FIRST Robotics, Kent/Allegan Workforce development board, The Right Place, Manufacturers Council, Economics Club of Grand Rapids, and Grand Rapids Community College Foundation.

Volleyball team ends season strong

Dec. 3, 2013;

Parkland’s volleyball program finished with a record of 52 wins and three losses, earning their sixth straight trip to the National Tournament in Toledo, Ohio. There, however, the Lady Cobras fell to the top seeded Cowley County Community College in a five set affair to earn the 2013 National Runner-Up.

… Several against quality opponents such as seventh ranked Kirkwood Community College, fourteenth ranked Des Moines Area Community College, sixth ranked Illinois Central Community College, twice over seventeenth ranked Lincoln Land Community College, nineteenth ranked Moraine Valley Community College, third ranked Johnson County Community College and the defending National champions and sixteenth ranked Grand Rapids Community College.


Screening Committee training added on Monday Dec. 9th from 2:00 – 4:00 PM in Room 122 LRC (Diversity Learning Center multi-purpose room)

This learning session is designed to brief all screening committee team members regarding their roles and responsibilities in the search process. Topics that will be covered include:

A.  Overview of Search Process

B.  Position Approval Process

C.  Recruitment/ SAAR Notebook Review Including:

  1. Screening Committee & Leadership Roles
  2. Candidate Screening/ Recruitment Solutions Training
  3. Interview Questions, Presentations/Demonstrations
  4. Diversity Considerations and Goals
  5. Effective Evaluation Tools and Consensus Decision-Making
  6. Human Resources Responsibilities.

Learning Objectives: Participants will understand their role in the selection of excellent candidates for staff and faculty positions and the hiring objectives, and legal parameters for assessing and recommending future staff and faculty members.

Workshop facilitated by employees in the Diversity Learning Center and Human Resources Department.

Staff and Faculty, please register online at or call Staff Development at ext. 4285.

Retired professor hosts book signing

Roger Schlosser, a retired GRCC social sciences professor, is hosting a book signing for his new book trilogy! The books are written under his Irish name  — Ruairi O’Cashel — and are titled Erin Go Bragh I: The Beginning 1969-1973; Erin Go Bragh II: The Middle of an Era 1975-1982; and Erin Go Bragh III: The End of an Era 1995-2002. You can find them here.

The signing will be 1-3 p.m. December 8 at the Barnes & Noble in the Woodland Mall, 3195 28th St. SE.

Don’t forget about his first work under his American name: Family History, Stories and Other Lives.

Construction trades CPR course scheduled for January

Prepare for and prevent medical emergencies in the construction trades industry with the First Aid/CPR Initial Certification course. This course covers primary assessment, heart problems, fractures, wounds and bandaging, stroke and shock management, eye injury, dislocation and splinting, obstructed airways, exposure to cold, control of bleeding, electrical injuries, back, head and neck injuries, epileptic seizures, and one-rescuer CPR. Sessions are scheduled for 6-10 p.m. January 20 and 27, 2014, at Tassell M-TEC. The cost is $60. To register, click here.

After completion, you will be certified in First Aid/CPR and will receive an official card. Initial certification expires two years after completion. To maintain certification, you must then take a recertification class. The next session is set for 6-10 p.m. January 16 at Tassell M-TEC for $50. To register, click here.

Academic Advising Highlight

The Visual Arts Department recently held an Advising Day in late October for students majoring in Art and Photography. Students had the opportunity to meet with full-time GRCC professors for academic advising. The department concurrently ran their first Michigan Portfolio Day, where Art and Photography majors participated in at least two portfolio reviews with two of eight transfer institutions that were present. Students had the opportunity of making connections and learning from institutions like Kendall, GVSU, U of M, MSU, and others. 8 Michigan colleges participated, 39 students attended, and they completed 107 reviews (averaging 2.9 reviews per student).

Math seminar to look at significant digits

The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department will host its last Mathematics Seminar of the Fall 2013 semester on Thursday, December 5, 3:00 – 4:00 PM in 107 Cook.  Our presenter, GRCC Mathematics Instructor Dana Sammons, will discuss the importance of, and the mathematics behind, significant digits.

The mathematics in this seminar will be accessible to anyone with good number sense, and should be of interest to those who wish to accurately represent the results of mathematical analyses of real-world problems.  Everyone in the greater GRCC community is welcome.

Pop and cookies will be served at 2:45 PM.

Significant Figures: The Mathematics Behind Their Significance

 Significant Figures are:

  • those digits that carry meaning contributing to its precision (Wikipedia)
  • the number of important digits in an expression (Whatis)

Just as many people believe what they read on websites like Wikipedia and Whatis when it might not be justified, often people believe that numbers are significant without carefully considering whether they deserve it.

In “The Pedagogy of Poverty vs. Good Teaching,” M. Abraham suggests we should provide students with a meaning-driven curriculum. If we are to analyze, discuss and interpret the meaning of the results of calculations with any integrity, we must know with what precision we should assign the numbers.

This talk will look into the mathematics behind the “rules” associated with significant figures, including some of the suggested improvements people have made over time.