Metro High School Police Academy to visit GRCC

The Metro High School Police Academy will be visiting the Devos Campus on Wednesday, June 18. There will be several police cruisers, armored vehicles and mobile command vehicles from area police agencies parked in the lot between the Mable Engle and Lettinga buildings from 7 A.M. to 4 P.M.. We are asking all students and staff members who normally park in this lot to park in the parking structure or the surface lot on the North side of the Sneden building. We will have Police Recruits from GRCC’s Police Academy on site to assist with traffic on the day of the event. Please contact Officer Bo Peters at ext. 3743 with any questions. We appreciate your assistance.

Pizza garden under way at Tassell M-TEC

Great minds are growing at the Tassell M-TEC this summer! The M-TEC teamwork/communications team invited Ms. Thue’s 5th graders from GRPS’s Southwest Community Campus to plant a pizza garden in raised beds at the M-TEC.! The project will teach the students about soil and composting and will include planting vegetables and spices to be harvested in the fall. The students will be returning for a pizza party that will use the tomatoes, basil, oregano and parsley.

We will update you as the garden grows!

garden with Ms Thue


Honors Program student wins Albion College scholarship

Clare Kolenda

Clare Kolenda

Congratulations to GRCC alumna Clare Kolenda, who received the Distinguished Albion College-Community College Transfer Scholarship.

The scholarship, given to one student from six local community colleges, covers 75 percent of tuition. Kolenda had to meet grade-point average requirements and undergo an interview with a selection committee.

Kolenda graduated from GRCC this spring with an associate in arts degree with the MACRAO stamp and completed the Honors Program. She plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in professional communications, with a minor in Spanish, at Albion.

“I am beyond thrilled to be transferring to Albion this fall, and cannot thank GRCC and its  Honors Program enough for preparing me not only to be able to receive this scholarship, but giving me the confidence as a student to achieve my goals,” she said.

Kristin Roberts wins Blackboard Catalyst Award

Kristin Roberts

Kristin Roberts

Kristin Roberts, a professor in GRCC’s Computer Information Systems Department, was awarded the 2014 Blackboard Catalyst Award for Exemplary Course for her C++ programming. Blackboard Inc., a developer of educational software, will honor Roberts and the other award winners during a conference in July in Las Vegas.

The Blackboard Catalyst Awards program recognizes courses that demonstrate best practices in four areas: course design, interaction and collaboration, assessment, and learner support. More than 300 faculty and instructional designers evaluated over 200 entries. This is the third such award achieved by CIS faculty in the past few years: Cheryl Kautz received Blackboard Catalyst awards in 2012 and 2013.

“All my courses include a ‘course tour’ to help students learn where everything is located in the course,” said Roberts. “Each week there’s an outline that presents student learning outcomes and closed-captioned videos related to topics covered during that week.”

The committee members who reviewed Roberts’ course called it “exemplary” and praised its accessibility, with one member saying: “The use of technology in this course is extraordinary, and it looks like it also plays a motivational role in endorsing learning.” To see a video about Roberts’ course, click here.

Dean Fiona Hert said Roberts and the entire CIS Department work hard to keep pace in a quickly changing field.

“Kristin has gone above and beyond to ensure her course meets the high demands and high standards of our computer information systems department and its students,” Hert said. “In this day and age of continuous technology changes, Kristin has designed a course that will prepare students for the future within their field.”