GRCC In the News, 12-18-14

3 West Michigan colleges share $65,000 grant to develop service learning opportunities

Dec. 17, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Three West Michigan colleges will use a $65,000 grant to create more service learning opportunities for students and strengthen community partnerships.

Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids Community College and Aquinas College will each select two departments where service learning opportunities in which students learn in the field by partnering with business or nonprofit organizations can be implemented.

New report shows GRCC’s struggle to retain African-American students

Dec. 17, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Keeping students in school and on path to graduation is one of Grand Rapids Community College’s most important tasks. But when it comes to African-American students, it’s a task the college continues to struggle with.

New police chief notes lowering recidivism rates; continues to seek ways to lower rates further

Dec. 17, 2014; therapidian.org

“Your question is timely,” says our new Chief David Rahinsky of the Grand Rapids Police Department when presented with accounts of remarkably low rates of recidivism among participants in a Peace Education Program at San Antonio’s Dominguez State Jail, and then asked about his approach for checking and applying this kind of result.

… “In the back of the room were social service providers- everyone from Grand Rapids Community College to people from Cherry Street Health Services. I think one of the things that is unique in Grand Rapids is what we touched on previously- that the support is here to help people succeed even despite challenges that they’ve had in the past. Even people who’ve been incarcerated,” says Rahinsky. “When we went around the room, one of the gentlemen from the Department of Corrections asked who was a first time offender, who was a second time offender, who was a third time offender. There was an individual in there who had been imprisoned four times, and one who had been in there five times. The fact that this community still reaches out to them, tries to embrace them, tries to put them on the right trail, tries to show them what social support is there for them, and that law enforcement sees their role as being pro-active and supportive is unique from any place that I’ve been.”

From seminary to STEM: Local pastor heads up huge education project at Steelcase pyramid

Dec. 18, 2014; rapidgrowthmedia.com

On first glance, Jerry Zandstra, the co-founder of the Pyramid Campus Group that recently announced its finalization of a $7.5 million purchase agreement for the Steelcase pyramid building, doesn’t exactly fit the mold you’d imagine for a player in ambitious real estate deals and cutting-edge experiments in incubator-style spaces.

… Among those details: The facility will feature innovations like a leadership council, funded with $200,000 and headed by Bert Bleke, a Grand Rapids Community College board chairman and former superintendent of Grand Rapids public schools. The leadership council will work to research new ideas, assist the schools and encourage collaboration, and is part of a two-pronged approach that Zandstra says will shape the sort of incubator spirit of the Pyramid Campus, along with aspects of spatial design like shared teachers lounges, classroom areas and arts and music facilities.

Northview Superintendent Mike Paskewicz to retire

Dec. 17, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Northview Superintendent Mike Paskewicz has announced he intends to retire effective July 1, 2015, saying it is the right time.

… In November, Paskewicz ran an unsuccessful race for one of two open seats on the Grand Rapids Community College Board of Trustees.

After 5 seasons away as head basketball coach, David Selmon rolls with changes at GRCC

Dec. 18, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — David Selmon, who thought he had coached his last basketball game in 2009, is like a kid in a candy store with the Grand Rapids Community College basketball team.

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