GRCC In the News, 7-29-16

Listen Up: NaNa Mafe Wo (I Miss You)

July 29, 2016; Modern Ghana

US based Ghanaian musician NaNa is out with this new highlife single titled Mafe W o( I miss you).

NaNa, who is currently a computer Science student at Grand Rapids Community College in Michigan decided to test the waters with this new tune and depending on how well Ghanaians( who this song was made for) accept this song will decide whether to pursue his interest in the music business alongside studies or drop music and only focus on studies.

Four seats draw five trustee applicants in Thornapple Township

July 28, 2016; The Hastings Banner

The race is on in Thornapple Township for four open trustee positions, and five applicants including incumbent Ross DeMaagd are in the running for the prize. DeMaagd, a Republican, will be joined by fellow Republican challengers Curt Campbell, Jake Jelsema, Andrew Lindemulder and Sandra L. Rairigh.

… Jake Jelsema, 30, lives on Twin Creek Drive and is a small business owner.

… What experience or education qualifies you for this position? I currently oversee a budget of over $5 million and a staff of 20 employees. I am also trained in financial and managerial accounting. I have an associate degree form Grand Rapids Community College, a bachelor’s degree from Aquinas College with a double major in political science and history, and a law degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School with specialization certificates in administrative law and constitutional law.

… Andrew Lindemulder, 28, lives on Holes Avenue and is an information technology director.

… What experience or education qualifies you for this position? I am currently the IT director for a large furniture manufacturer in Grand Rapids. Previously, I worked for a multi-national corporation, overseeing contracts in the millions of dollars. I have a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Ferris State University and an associate degree from GRCC.

Student Affairs staff additions

Valerie Butterfield smiles.

Valerie Butterfield

Lina Blair smiles.

Lina Blair

Please stop by to introduce yourself and welcome the new members of SA team. All bring excellent student services and support experiences that will benefit our students, faculty, and staff.

Valerie Butterfield, Registrar: Valerie holds a Masters of Public Administration from the University of Michigan-Dearborn, and comes to GRCC from Henry Ford College where she has worked as an enrollment administrator.  Valerie has experience working with students, staff, and faculty by serving in several roles in higher education including: Educational Site Coordinator, Enrollment Specialist and Registrar.  Valerie enjoys kayaking and hiking with her husband, Matt, and dog, Indy.

Lina Blair, Director of Student Life and Conduct: Lina holds a Master’s of Science in training and development from Northern Michigan University, and has spent her career at Northern Michigan University.  While at NMU, she was a resident director, Academic and Career Advisement Center Coordinator, and Director of Orientation. Most recently, Lina served as the assistant dean of students.  Lina is originally from Quincy, Illinois and enjoys spending time with her family, fly fishing and photography.

GRCC In the News, 7-28-16

Making it in Grand Rapids: How the startup community is preparing entrepreneurs for the ‘real world’


Can you teach entrepreneurship? This question may not have a straight answer, but is it even the right question? There are those in the Grand Rapids startup community who are not only working to educate entrepreneurs as much as possible but are also changing the question by asking not if it can be taught, but how it can be taught.

… This blending of skillsets is called “intrapreneruship” and is something that Professor Felix Pereiro, Business Department Head at the Meijer Center for Business Studies at GRCC, also recognizes as an integral part of an entrepreneurship education. “Can students discuss innovation and the creative process? Can they solve complex problems, lead and produce results? Companies are looking for these traits,” says Pereiro. That is why programs like those at GVSU and GRCC are so important to the next generation of entrepreneurs and those that choose to enter into a company. According to a 2014 survey of 3,335 human resources professionals conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), 54 percent of respondents indicated that job applicants lacked critical thinking and problem solving skills.

News Briefs

7/27/16 Community College Week

… GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Grand Rapids Community College has established a $7 million scholarship fund with Spectrum Health to help students pursuing careers in healthcare or the health sciences.

122 candidates file for school board seats in Kent, Ottawa counties

7/27/16 MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Eleven candidates are vying for three, four-year seats on the nine-member Grand Rapids Board of Education in the Tuesday, Nov. 8, general election.

… Here is a rundown of candidates who filed for Grand Rapids and other Kent and Ottawa county area school districts.

… Raynard Ross, an associate dean for Student Success & Retention Services at Grand Rapids Community College, is seeking a second term.

Radio personality tries a 3rd time to unseat county board incumbent

July 27, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Radio personality Robert Womack hopes his third try will be the charm as he challenges 17th District County Commissioner Candace Chivis in the Aug. 3 Democratic primary election.

… Chivis, who was first elected to the board in 2010 and counts former State Rep. Robert Dean and former Grand Rapids Community College board member Ellen James as her supporters, said Womack is focusing on issues that fall outside of the county board’s purview.

GRCC In the News, 7-27-16

Six steps sheriff, other leaders urge be taken to strengthen community colleges

July 26, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Kent County Sheriff Larry Stelma says law enforcement agencies and the private sector are dealing with a similar problem a skills gap.

… “Our recruits need to be among the best and the brightest among our citizens,” said Stelma, at a news conference at Grand Rapids Community College. “A recent poll of just our current local needs over the next four years indicates that there is not enough capacity to fill the need, to train those choosing to go into public safety as a career.”

Grandwich names top-10 sandwiches

July 26, 2016; Grand Rapids Business Journal

The top-10 sandwiches from this year’s Grandwich competition have been selected by voters.

… The panel of Grandwich judges represents a cross section of the city: MLive’s Amy Sherman and John Gonzalez; Valley City Linen’s Anna Anderson; Grand Rapids Community College Secchia Institute for Culinary Education’s John Sebestyen and Charles Olawsky; and Grand Rapids Police Department Deputy Chief Daniel Savage.

Generator fumes, fat cats, drunken crowds: Top comments from food truck hearing

July 26, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — A proposed liberalization of the city’s food truck rules came up for a hearing tonight, drawing comment from operators who say the changes don’t go far enough and from others who cautioned the city to keep some restrictions.

… What follows is a sampling of comments from the Tuesday, July 26, hearing:

… Dan Gendler, program director for Grand Rapids Community College’s Secchia Institute for Culinary Education

“Food trucks are going to make this city more vibrant. They’re going to broaden the culinary experience in Grand Rapids. While we need to go down this path, we do need to do it carefully so that it is good for everybody (including brick-and-mortar restaurant operators).”

Zeeland’s Palmbos signs with North Carolina Central

July 26, 2016; The Holland Sentinel

Holland, Mich. — Having received offers to continue his collegiate career closer to his family home in Zeeland, Justin Palmbos decided he wanted to spread his wings.

… Palmbos has spent the last two seasons playing at Grand Rapids Community College, anchoring the starting rotation as its ace. He finished the season at 4-6 with a 3.96 earned run average, a MCCAA conference best 85 strikeouts and ended the campaign with an All-Conference selection.


GRCC In the News, 7-26-16


July 25, 2016; Community College Daily

Surgical technicians and sterile processing technicians are just two areas under consideration for extending the apprenticeship program that launched last year at Grand Rapids Community College (Michigan), in which students work part time for a year in a clinical setting as they receive classroom training.

Spotlight: Key to success: ‘Honor and integrity’

July 25, 2016; The Herald-Palladium (St. Joseph)

BENTON TOWNSHIP — When he was growing up just outside Grand Rapids, Robert Boyce was intrigued by police and the work they do.

… He earned his law enforcement degree at Grand Rapids Community College while going through the police academy there. He got his first job in law enforcement as a Hillsdale police officer. But he wanted to be on the west side of the state. So after a year in Hillsdale, when a position opened up at the Benton Harbor Police Department, he went to work there for six years.

Grand Valley recognized for support of veterans

July 25, 2016;

Grand Valley State University was honored June 22 for its commitment to helping student veterans transition from the military to college life through the Michigan Veteran Education Initiative.

MVEI, a program through the Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency, places veteran resource representatives (VRRs) on campuses throughout the state to help student veterans succeed as they pursue an education. Marq Hicks, a veteran of the United States Marine Corps, serves as the veteran resource representative for Grand Valley and Grand Rapids Community College.

GRCC Hires Brian Skudre as Head Softball Coach

July 25, 2016; MLive

Grand Rapids, Mich. — Grand Rapids Community College’s softball program has a new skipper.  GRCC’s Athletic Department announced Friday that Brian Skudre has accepted the head coaching position for the 2016-17 season effective immediately.

Call to Makers Extended for the Grand Rapids Maker Faire

July 25, 2016; Broadway World

Grand Rapids Mini Maker Faire announced today that the Call to Makers for the 3rd annual Grand Rapids Mini Maker Faire has been an extended! Makers now have until Wednesday, August 10 to sign up to showcase what they have invented or are making. This year’s Maker Faire will be August 20 & 21 held at the Grand Rapids Public Museum and nearby Grand Valley State University’s John C. Kennedy Hall of Engineering.

… The Grand Rapids Mini Maker Faire is being organized by the GR Makers, The Geek Group, Grand Rapids Community College, Grand Valley State University and the Grand Rapids Public Museum.

Time tempers Steel’s Truesdell

July 26, 2016; Portland Tribune (Ore.)

Nick Truesdell has a to-do list he looks forward to tackling as the Portland Steels season comes to a climax.

… Truesdell wound up having to go a different route on the gridiron, after being dismissed from the University of Cincinnati team. He enrolled at Grand Rapids Community College in Michigan and got off to a great start, only to tear an ACL after one game. He then hired an agent and went to various pro camps, tryouts and workouts, but found he needed more football seasoning.


GRCC In the News, 7-25-16

Colleges leverage apprenticeship model for medical careers

July 24, 2016;

Amid growing demand for health care talent, the partners behind a medical assistant apprenticeship program now look to expand the model to other in-demand areas.

Surgical technicians and sterile processing technicians are just two areas under consideration for extending the apprenticeship program that launched last year at Grand Rapids Community College, in which students work part time for a year in a clinical setting as they receive classroom training.

Search ‘success’ rates at Michigan’s universities, community colleges

July 25, 2016; MLive

New state data shed fresh light on how long it takes students to earn degrees from Michigan’s public universities and community colleges.

Landmark 151-year-old mansion put on the block by college foundation

July 23, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Heritage Hill is a hot real estate market these days.

… The Grand Rapids Community College Foundation is taking advantage of the robust market by putting its 151-year-old McCabe-Marlowe House on the market for $575,000.

Grand Rapids icon Yesterdog turns 40

July 23, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Forty years ago, Bill Lewis opened Yesterdog with one goal in mind.

… Before Yesterdog, Lewis says he was a hippie who worked odd jobs to pay for his travels. He also served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War, from 1967-69. He later earned an associate’s degree from Grand Rapids Community College, but he credits his restaurant training to working in the kitchen at Mr. Fables, another iconic Grand Rapids eatery.

GRCC In the News, 7-22-16

Børns: ‘Everything in Music and Art is Cyclical’

July 15, 2016; Rolling Stone India

If social media rants are anything to go by, fans of breakout artist Garrett Borns aka Børns are mighty pissed that their little secret is no longer a secret, or for that matter, little. Fame comes at a price and this time, its the admirers of the American singer-songwriter who have to pay for it. Also, its no use keeping things under wraps when social media mammoth Taylor Swift exposes your private hero to the world. (“So ‘Electric Love’ by Børns sounds like an instant classic to me….. #justsayingggg,” she tweeted last year.)

(This article doesn’t mention it, but Borns is a GRCC alumnus.)

Congratulations to Sarah Barker!

Sarah Barker stands behind a sign that says: "Badwater Basin. 282 feet/855 meters below sea level."

Sarah Barker

The Physical Science Department is pleased to announce that GRCC geology student, Sarah Barker, was awarded an On To the Future (OTF) travel grant to attend this year’s Geological Society of America (GSA) Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado. One of only 125 recipients in the nation, Ms. Barker was offered a travel grant, full meeting registration, and a one year membership to GSA.

From the OTF website:

On To the Future celebrates the growing diversity of the GSA community and the importance of GSA’s student membership through inviting, supporting, and mentoring an increased number of students from diverse backgrounds to their first GSA meeting. This community is designed to provide a place for OTF students to gain exposure to the wide array of geoscience research and career options available. It is intended to facilitate effective mentoring relationships and networking opportunities to help OTF students become engaged leaders in the scientific and professional community.

GRCC Bookstore is hiring for temporary positions

Do you know someone who may be interested in a temporary position in the bookstore?  The Grand Rapids Community College Bookstore is seeking exceptional people with cashier, sales and/or stocking experience for short-term temporary positions this Fall.

They can apply by going to Just click on “Apply Now” and choose retail hourly, then find “Temporary Retail Team Member”on the job list, then type Zip Code 49503 and pick Grand Rapids Community College. They can either upload a resume or simply type their information into the field provided. All applications are required to go through this site. EOE M/F/D/V Requirements: Minimum Age: 18

Job Type: Temporary

Required education: High school or equivalent

GRCC In the News, 7-21-16

sHaPe camp introduces teens to health professions

July 20, 2016;

More than 40 West Michigan teenagers explored careers in the health professions field during interactive activities at the 7th annual Summer Health Activities and Professions Exploration (sHaPe) summer day camp, held at Grand Valley’s Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences July 11-14.

… This year’s sHaPe camp also welcomed students from Grand Rapids Community College, Grand Rapids Public Schools and University of Michigan’s Future Public Health Leaders Program during a special event July 15.

Safe space: Grand Rapids Police Department, community work to reform law enforcement

July 21, 2016;

One by one, they the young and the old, the Grand Rapidians who have lived here for decades, the spiritual and the community leaders step up to the microphone to speak of race and police and violence and guns and history. To shed tears. To call for change and speak of that big, daunting, amorphous thing called the future. There, at Grand Rapids’ LifeQuest Ministries, they speak of fears and anger and an unrelenting sadness. Days after police shot and killed Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minnesota and Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, and one day after a man shot and killed five police officers in Dallas, Texas, they together paint a portrait of what many in our city, and country, are feeling: hopeless, afraid, overwhelmed, frayed, wondering if change will come and if it does, how, and when, that will happen.

… Chris Sain, Jr., an educator, community activist and coordinator of retention at Grand Rapids Community College, as well as the vice president of the NAACP’s Grand Rapids chapter, notes at the same forum that, while progress is occurring with local police, including in Grand Rapids, Kentwood and Kent County, he, as an individual of color, has been “harassed and profiled” by law enforcement.

Coach Brad Koch To Lead Aquinas Softball Program

July 20, 2016;

Longtime softball assistant coach Brad Koch has been named the new Head Coach of the Aquinas College Softball program.

… Before coming to Aquinas, Coach Koch was the varsity softball coach at Kenowa Hills High School for five years, then spent five seasons as first assistant at Grand Rapids Community College. He has also coached the Grand Rapids Blaze 18U Elite travel team for five summers. Koch co-owns and runs Blue Chip Softball, which puts on youth softball camps and tournaments in Michigan.