GRCC In the News, 4-14-17

Family and friends of fatal beating victim gather for vigil

April 13, 2017; MLive

Julius Vinson III was severely injured in the early morning hours of Friday, March 31 along Vineland Avenue SE south of 28th Street.

… Relatives of Vinson said he was studying at Grand Rapids Community College and hoped to become a Realtor.

Former local man opens GR eatery

April 13, 2017; Grand Haven Tribune

A former Spring Lake Township resident has turned his experience at a local restaurant into a business of his own.

… (George) Chittenden attended Grand Rapids Community College’s Peter Secchia Culinary Institute, graduating in 2011. He then worked at the upscale Bay Pointe Inn on Gun Lake, 30 miles south of Grand Rapids. He lives in Wayland and commutes to his Grand Rapids restaurant.

9,000 students engage in interactive career exploration

April 13, 2017; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – DeVos Place was all abuzz Thursday, April 13, when nearly 9,000 middle and high schools showed up to be exposed to an innovative, hands-on career event.

… For example, she (Alejandra Cruz) said she enjoyed the virtual reality integrated welding exhibit from Grand Rapids Community College’s M-TEC.

Photos from Honors Program celebration

On Wednesday, April 12, the Department of Experiential Learning hosted the GRCC Honors Program Completion Reception. Ten students were recognized for completing the Honors Program this year. Emceed by the director of Experiential Learning, Michael Schavey, guests enjoyed an amazing dinner, a speech from a fellow Honors student, Sam Slaw and received their program completion certificates and commencement cords.

In addition to meeting degree and transfer requirements, these students worked diligently to complete both Honors Courses and Honors Contracts.  Additionally, these students attended co-curricular activities like the Diversity Lecture Series, exposing them to new ways of thinking, or engaged our community through service learning like tutoring in our Writing Lab of packing lunches at Kids’ Food basket. We asked them to participate in our social events like Painting with Honors, the GVSU/GRCC Honors Game Night or, recently, the Honors Networking event that paired students with professionals in the field. These experiences bring students together, forming an Honors community of both future scholars and leaders.

The students who complete the program this year are:

  • Morgan Brown, returning to GRCC.
  • Dayna Dunneback, transferring to Grand Valley State University to study Speech Pathology.
  • Lilly Duyck, transferring to Grand Valley State University to study Psychology.
  • Caleb Graveldinger, transferring to Grand Valley State University to Physical Therapy.
  • Kayla Musil, transferring to the University of Michigan.
  • Carrie Rister, possibly transferring to Grand Valley State University or to Ferris State University.
  • Elaina Sagorski, transferring to Grand Valley State University to study Psychology.
  • Sam Slaw, possibly transferring to Brandis University or the University of Michigan.
  • Leo Tokarski, transferring to Ferris State University.
  • Jessica Verbeek, earning her Associates in Arts & Science.

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Volunteers needed for Finals Relaxer

The Campus Activities Board (CAB) is seeking your participation in this year’s Finals Relaxer happening next Thursday, April 20, from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. outside on the Dr. Juan R. Olivarez Student Plaza. CAB needs volunteers to staff the registration tables, manage the rock wall and air jumpers, elephant ears, Double Gyro-sphere and help with setup and tear down. If you would like to participate, please add your name to the volunteer form. This event will not be possible without your help!

If you have any questions, please contact Jon Blackwell, Campus Activities Board co-advisor, by phone at 616-234-4039 or by email at

Mathematics Seminars look at origin of numbers, Escher

The Grand Rapids Community College Mathematics Department is pleased to announce that it will host presentations by two current students at its final Mathematics Seminars of academic year 2016-2017.

The first seminar features José Garcia, who will discuss “The Origins of Numbers” on Tuesday, April 18, 3-4 p.m. in 103 Cook.  This talk should appeal to those with an interest in mathematics, mathematics education and history.  Jose’s abstract follows.

The Origins of Numbers

Every time we wonder if there is enough money to buy that new iPad AND groceries, numbers are used. We take for granted what it means to do basic arithmetic and, even more so, why the numbers came to be the way they are.  Come join us in looking into the origins of numbers and why they look the way they do today!

Our second talk will be given by Jeff Powers.  His topic, “The Open Gate of Mathematics: From the Alhambra to Escher,” will be presented Thursday, April 20, 3-4 p.m. in 103 Cook.  In addition to those with a love of mathematics and its teaching, this talk should be of interest to anyone who appreciates art and beauty.  Jeff’s abstract provides more information.

The Open Gate of Mathematics: From the Alhambra to Escher

In 1922, a 24-year-old artist named M.C. Escher visited the Alhambra, a 13th-century Moorish fortress and palace in Granada, Spain. The stunning Islamic design and geometric patterns overwhelmed the young artist, who began a 50-year obsession with dividing the plane. Today, Escher’s name is synonymous with tessellations, symmetry, and impossible shapes. His art’s mathematical structure has affected fields as far-reaching as combinatorics, graph theory, non-Euclidean geometry, and crystallography. This seminar focuses on Escher’s exploration of the two-dimensional plane and his link to the Moorish artisans of the past, begging the question: Were these artists doing math? 

Both talks will be accessible to a wide range of students, faculty and administrators.  As always, everyone is welcome to attend.  Assorted refreshments will be available at 2:45 p.m.