GRCC In the News, 8-29-14

GRCC showcases $41 million in campus renovations completed over past two years

Aug. 28, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Students returning to Grand Rapids Community College this week saw plenty of changes around campus, after a series of summer projects renovated classrooms, updated lab equipment, and added new windows and fire suppression systems.

President Carter, Gov. Snyder to speak in Detroit

Aug. 28, 2014; KTAR

DETROIT (AP) — Former President Jimmy Carter and Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder will speak at an Islamic conference in Detroit this week.

… The 89-year-old Carter is set to visit Michigan again on Sept. 22 as part of Grand Rapids Community College’s Diversity Lecture Series.

See these ‘incredible toys’ at Grand Rapids’ first Maker Faire at Grand Rapids Public Museum

Aug. 28, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI The Geek Group calls the “World’s Largest Newton’s Cradle,” and at a glance, it’s hard to disagree.

… The Grand Rapids Mini Maker Faire, sponsored by Grand Rapids Community College and the Grand Rapids Public Museum, will be a smaller, community-focused event.

First apples of season donated to Food Bank

Aug. 28, 2014;

Instead of throwing a party, Riveridge Produce Marketing, a West Michigan apple grower, packer and sales company, decided to celebrate their 25th anniversary by feeding the hungry. On Wednesday morning, they invited volunteers from Feeding America West Michigan Food Bank to their orchard in Conklin to pick nearly 600 pounds of Ginger Gold apples for local families in need.

… Lannie Collard was among the volunteers at the orchard. An instructor at Grand Rapids Community College, she brought a group from her grandparent/grandchild program to help.

GRCC In the News, 8-28-14

Man enters plea in crash that killed Grandville High School senior, cousin

Aug. 27, 2014; MLive

MECOSTA COUNTY, MI — An 18-year-old has entered a plea in a crash that killed a Grandville High School senior and his cousin in May.

(Roman Aguilar-Emmons, who was killed in the crash, planned to attend GRCC’s Police Academy.)

Grand Rapids director Brian Miller enjoys significant career boost, helming two Bruce Willis films

Aug. 28, 2014; MLive

Brian Miller recently took a significant step forward in his film directing career and then took a much-needed vacation.

… Miller graduated from East Grand Rapids High School in 1993, and studied acting and film first at Grand Rapids Community College, then Grand Valley State University. He finished his degree in 1999 and moved to Los Angeles in 2003, where he wrote and pitched screenplays while working day jobs in sales and marketing. He got his break in 2009, when producer Randall Emmett gave the green light to his screenplay for Crossfire; the film starred Chris Klein (American Pie) and rapper 50 Cent.

Memphis-style BBQ restaurant to open downtown before ArtPrize

Aug. 27, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Steve Elkowitz is bringing a little bit of Memphis to downtown Grand Rapids.

… Elkowitz, who lives in Caledonia, graduated with a culinary degree from Grand Rapids Community College in the late 1990s, and also has degrees from Cornerstone University and Liberty University.

Top 5 things to do around Grand Rapids include Makers Faire, Whitecaps baseball, El Toro!

Aug. 28, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — If you’re staying in the area for Labor Day, here are a few entertainment options for your holiday weekend.

… Local creators will showcase their work at Grand Rapids’ first Maker Faire, to be held in the Public Museum, 272 Pearl St. NW, on Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 30-31. A Maker Faire combines elements of a science fair, engineering expo and design show. They have been popping up all over the country after debuting in California in 2006 and expanding to Detroit, New York and other cities since 2010.

The family friendly celebration will feature rockets and robots, DIY science and technology, unique handmade crafts, and more. Patrons will see installations from GR Makers and the Geek Group as well as other local West Michigan inventors and innovators. The Grand Rapids Mini Maker Faire is being organized by the GR Makers, The Geek Group, Grand Rapids Community College, Genesis Inc. and the Grand Rapids Public Museum and will be a smaller version of the festival that celebrates tinkering and the DIY crowd.

Michigan’s Skilled Trades and High-Tech Future

Aug. 27, 2014; YouTube

(Much of this video was shot at GRCC.)


Volunteers needed for Carter lecture

We will be kicking off this year’s Diversity Lecture Series with An Evening with Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter on Monday, September 22, at 5:00 pm in the Ford Fieldhouse. This is a very exciting way to kick-off the 20th Anniversary of the lecture series, which also falls during the centennial celebration of the college.

We are seeking about 20 volunteers to help us manage this kick-off event. All volunteers will receive a GRCC t-shirt to wear while volunteering that night.

We will need volunteers to start between 3:30 – 4:00 pm. Tickets will be available to all volunteers that want to stay for the lecture. If not staying for the lecture, you will likely be done by about 5:15 pm.

Please email Sara Dorer at if you are interested and willing to volunteer that night (and include your t-shirt size)!

GVSU Fall Workshops Added to Staff Development Schedule

Staff Development is entering into its second year of program collaboration with GVSU and has added their fall workshops to the Staff Development registration page Take a look! There is a wide variety of topics to choose from. Plus, it’s nice to have the chance to check out their campuses and meet their employees. Workshops are offered at both the main campus in Allendale, and the Pew campus here in GR.

The easy way to identify the GVSU workshops, is to look at the ones that the location shows “OFF” for off-campus. To view details of a session, click the + sign next to the Session title/topic.

Dunk tank donations to help United Way

The Dunk Tank Lineup is set and ready to go!

Please join us during Welcome Week on Tuesday, September 9th from 10 am to 1 pm to dunk some of your colleagues. We are asking employees to donate a minimum of $1.00 to throw a few pitches. Dr. Ender will match the total funds donated up to $500.00. All the proceeds will be given to The United Way to help support our community needs. We hope to see you out there!

  • 10:15-10:30 a.m. — John Cowles, dean of Student Success and Retention.
  • 10:30-10:45 a.m. — Kurt Meinders, IT customer support manager.
  • 10:45-11 a.m. — Rebecca Whitman, chief of Campus Police.
  • 11-11:15 a.m. — Arielle Brown, president of the Student Alliance.
  • 11:15-11:30 a.m. — David Anderson, chief information officer.
  • 11:30-11:45 a.m. — Sara Dorer, director of Student Life and Conduct.
  • 11:45 a.m. to noon — Jason Schueller, coordinator of placement testing.
  • noon to 12:15 p.m. — Brandon Sinclair, president of the Campus Activities Board.
  • 12:15-12:30 p.m. — Evan Macklin, coordinator of Student Life and Conduct.
  • 12:30-12:45 p.m. — Evan Macklin, coordinator of Student Life and Conduct.



Tom Neils, Mary Beth O’Rourke, Mary Kay Bethune win Excellence in Education awards

The Excellence in Education Awards were established in 1989 to honor GRCC employees — all of whom are nominated by their peers — for their contributions to the college, higher education and the community. Tom Neils, a chemistry professor in the physical sciences department, is the winner of this year’s Faculty Award, and Mary Beth O’Rourke, an adjunct instructor in the department, received the Adjunct Award. Mary Kay Bethune, a customer service manager in the financial aid office, is the winner of the Staff Award.

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GRCC In the News, 8-27-14

Mental health and aging

Aug. 26, 2014; WZZM

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) — Much attention is giving to physical health during the aging process, but mental health is often overlooked.
Mike Faber of the Older Learner Center at Grand Rapids Community College visited WZZM 13 News Tuesday, to give some advice on treating mental illness.

WATCH: The Maker Faire Movement Readies For First Ever West Michigan Show

Aug. 26, 2014; WOOD Radio

The first annual Grand Rapids Mini Maker Faire is scheduled for this weekend, Saturday and Sunday August 30 & 31, at the Grand Rapids Public Museum.

… The Grand Rapids Mini Maker Faire is originally a collaboration of the GR Makers, The Geek Group, Grand Rapids Community College, Genesis Inc. and the Grand Rapids Public Museum.

All eyes on starting quarterback Rush as Kater guns for top position

Aug. 26, 2014; Central Michigan Life (student newspaper for Central Michigan University)

Sophomore Cooper Rush has been named the Central Michigan University football teams starting quarterback heading into Thursday nights matchup with Tennessee-Chattanooga.

… Senior Cody Kater was a standout at Grand Rapids Community College before coming to CMU, where he earned the starting job in training camp. He was sidelined with a broken collarbone last season.

Volunteers needed for community picnic

Want to help celebrate GRCC’s 100 years in the community?  As you know, GRCC is hosting a Community Picnic on Saturday, September 13 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Ford Fieldhouse.  In order to make this event the best it can be, we need your help.  We are looking for folks to help in 1 or 2 hour shifts doing various tasks throughout the event.  This is sure to be a fun event.

If you want to be part of the fun, contact Liz Timmer at or 457-3708.

Photos from convocation

The academic convocation on Thursday marked the beginning of the college’s 100th anniversary celebration.  Steve Abid and Laurie Foster, master and mistress of ceremonies, opened the ceremony.  Guests enjoyed hearing the GRCC Brass Ensemble led by Mike Gillan and the national anthem by Kevin Dobreff. Former Provost Dr. Gely and Dr. Ender shared their thoughts about the college’s great past and bright future. The event was followed by a reception on the Dr. Juan R. Olivarez Student Plaza.

If you would like a program from the convocation, you can email Art Johnson at

Check GRCC Today this Thursday and Friday for photo galleries of the Excellence in Education Award presentations and the employee mixer that also took place last week.

To learn more ways you can join the yearlong centennial celebration, click here.

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