GRCC In the News, 3-2-16

College professor’s sexual misconduct leads to resignation

March 1, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – A longtime Grand Rapids Community College professor, accused of repeatedly kissing a student against her will, resigned the same day he learned school officials would recommend his firing for sexual misconduct, according to documents released by the college.

GRCC receives $449K job training grant to help low-income residents earn living wage

March 1, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – The W.K. Kellogg Foundation awarded a two-year, $449,862 grant to Grand Rapids Community College to continue to help train people in need of a post-secondary education to find employment that provides a living wage.

GRCC professor weighs in on Presidential campaign after Super Tuesday

March 2, 2016; WZZM

Keith St. Clair, a political science professor at Grand Rapids Community College, joined us Wednesday morning to talk about Super Tuesday results and how they’ll affect the race heading into Michigan’s primary next week.

GRCC cancels afternoon classes, closes all campuses early 

March 1, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Grand Rapids Community College has canceled classes due to inclement weather Tuesday.

Oceana County Sheriff Robert Farber to retire

March 1, 2016; WZZM

HART, MICH. – Oceana County Sheriff Robert Farber is not seeking re-election in the upcoming November election.

… The sheriff has taught law enforcement courses at West Shore Community College, Ferris State University, Grand Rapids Community College and Muskegon Community College during his long career.


Faculty Spotlight: Sophia Brewer

A woman sits at a desk behind a computer monitor.

Sophia Brewer

Sophia Brewer started her journey at GRCC in 2008 as an Adjunct Librarian. In 2014, she was promoted to a full-time position. Currently, she works as the Serials & Collection Development Librarian. This means she is responsible for the overall collection of printed books, ebooks, magazines, journals, streaming videos, etc. in the library’s collection. Her duties also include everything from collection management to reference, to teaching library research and academic advising. Sophia strongly feels, “the library is a great place to work, not only do we work directly with students on a daily basis, we also work with faculty, staff and administrators to ensure that students have access to the resources they need to be successful.”

In fact, one of the things that Sophia values most is the relationships that she is able to build with her liaison areas. Each librarian at GRCC is assigned departments and/or areas of study in which they have to build collections and engage the faculty, staff, and students. In her time at GRCC, she has been able to work with Business, Academic Foundation Programs, Diversity Learning Center, ESL, Gender and Women Studies, Reading, Fashion and Interior Design. By engaging the faculty, staff and students in her liaison areas, she has been able to really customize instruction and resources for the students in those specific areas of study.

Sophia has also been responsible for many innovative projects within the library including de- selection projects, space assessments, software/vendor selection and research. In addition to her work in the library she has also participated on several committees and College Action Projects (CAP). She is currently on the Diversity Team, the Campus Climate CAP and the Lowest Reading Level CAP. Sophia has also volunteered and ushered at many campus events such as MLK Day, Giants Awards, The Diversity Lecture Series, Salute to Women, Latino Youth Conference and much more.

Through the work that Sophia has done with the Diversity Team and on the Campus Climate CAP, her passion for learning and serving has been reinforced. She is truly grateful to work for an institution that values diversity and inclusion. Sophia greatly appreciates being able to work in an open, public institution. Affordable access to knowledge, education and job training really adds purpose and meaning to the work that she does here at GRCC.

In addition to all of the marvelous work that Sophia Brewer does here at GRCC, during the November 2015 election, she won a seat on the Grand Rapids Board of Library Commissioners. This position allows her the opportunity to advocate for free and open access to knowledge and services for all Grand R
apids citizens. This is a great complement to the work that she is already doing within the college.

Sophia strongly values the relationships that she has built with her colleagues. She says, “In every facet of my work here at GRCC, I have to give credit to all of my colleagues especially the librarians, Lori Debie, Mike Klawitter, Nan Schichtel and Steven Putt. We all take our work seriously and support each other.” We, at GRCC, are so thankful to have such a passionate advocate that works hard to promote positive progress toward our goal of educating and preparing students for success.


IIPD Grants: Funding Opportunity

The deadline for the submission of grant applications for the Instructional Improvement & Professional Development (IIPD) Grants program is 4:30 p.m., March 18, 2016. Applicants are encouraged to submit their applications electronically. The IIPD application packet and IIPD Guidelines are available in the GRCC Internal Grants area of the Grants Office website at

Please note that applications must include a Supervisor’s Approval form, a budget form and budget documentation. If you have any questions about IIPD grants, please contact Judith Larsen, Director, Grants and Resource Development Department, at 234-3910 or Good luck!