Learning Day, Opening Day, Adjunct Dinner to be ‘zero waste days’

GRCC is taking steps toward reducing the amount of trash it sends to landfills, starting with the upcoming Learning Day.

The Facilities team, Creative Dining and the Sustainability CAP are making Learning Day, Opening Day and the Adjunct Dinner “zero waste days” – with a goal of expanding to other events.

Zero waste refers to waste prevention, saving resources and helping the environment by sending fewer materials to landfills.

Dean Mike Vargo said sustainability is one of the college’s strategic goals.

All the utensils, plates, napkins, and glasses used by Creative Dining is compostable, meaning it can decompose quickly rather than last for years – or decades – in a landfill like many single-use plastic materials.

But to be most effective, the materials have to be sorted after being used, so the Facilities Team can add them to the campus’ compost facility and recyclables can be sent to the proper place.

The January 9 Learning Day will bring hundreds of staff and faculty together for a meal before attending breakout training and informational sessions. Vargo said there will be designated, labeled bins for people to sort their compostable waste, as well as information about sustainability.

Vargo said the goal is to start with the large campus gatherings, but potentially expand to smaller meetings and events throughout the year.

Sign up for training in online, hybrid courses

Our next OHCC session will take place this upcoming winter semester!

Coming up  this January 10, 2020, our 6-week Online Hybrid Certification Course will be open for registration! This multi-session learning opportunity prepares faculty to teach online and hybrid courses at Grand Rapids Community College.

Make sure you secure your spot by enrolling through the CTE website.

Participants must have taken “Blackboard Basics” as a prerequisite prior to the start date of the course.

For further information, visit the OHCC Website. Also, feel free to contact us at 616-234-3205 or dlit@grcc.edu

GRCC In the News, 12-19-19

Business Journal names Newsmaker finalists

Dec. 18, 2019; Grand Rapids Business Journal

With 2019 about to slip into the rearview mirror, it’s time to reflect on the people and events that shaped West Michigan during the past 12 months.

… For now, though, here is the first look at the finalists in each of the categories for Grand Rapids Business Journal 2019 Newsmaker of the Year.

… Education

 Bill Pink, Grand Rapids Community College

Cirque de Noël celebrates 10 years

Dec. 18, 2019; WOOD TV

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) – There’s something special on stage this week that’s sure to get you in the holiday mood, the 10th annual Cirque de Noel with the Grand Rapids Symphony. Today we have Associate Conductor, John Varineau and aerialist Christine Van Loo, a Grand Rapids native in studio with us.

… At both shows in DeVos Performance Hall you’ll be greeted by a magical “Land of Sweets,” created by pastry and baking students at Grand Rapids Community College’s Secchia Institute for Culinary Education. Certified pastry chef Gilles Renusson, a world-renowned sugar artist, led the team that created a wonderland out of sweets for the outer lobby of DeVos Hall.

Nominations being sought for 2020 Emeritus Faculty Award

You are invited to nominate a GRCC retired faculty or administrator for the Emeritus Faculty Award.  This award was established in 1985 to honor those instructors and administrators whose dedication and creativity have left an indelible mark on the lives of students and colleagues at GRCC.  During their tenure at GRCC and since their retirement, they have continued to promote GRCC’s “Commitment to Excellence.”

Please submit online nominations by noon on Friday, February 14, 2020.  If you prefer a paper nomination form, please contact provost@grcc.edu to request one.  For more information, you may visit the website.

GRCC In the News, 12-18-19

Using her skills for good

Dec. 17, 2019; schoolnewsnetwork.org (Kent Intermediate School District)

Senior Cebrina Kader carries a 4.00 GPA, is a second-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do and competes on the school’s cross-country track team.

… When she graduates next spring, Cebrina plans to pursue engineering courses at Grand Rapids Community College and then, a degree in biomedical engineering at Grand Valley State University. She says her CAD skills will help her develop prosthetic devices using 3D printers.

Caelyn Smith Named PHS Raider of the Week

Dec. 17, 2019 The Portland Beacon

Portland High School is pleased to announce this week’s recipient of the “Raider of the Week” award.

… Post-High School Plans:  After graduation, Caelyn (Smith) plans to attend Grand Rapids Community College to study culinary arts and to become a pastry chef.

Hattie’s Dream

Dec. 18, 2019; Grand Rapids Times

Hattie Beverly graduated from Wealthy Avenue Training School for Teachers in Grand Rapids in 1899. At the time, she was close to the same age as the Grand Rapids School District.

… A Collection Development Librarian at Grand Rapids Community College and also Co – President with JoEllen Clarey of the Grand Rapids Women’s History, (Sophia) Brewer has a passion for women’s history and the desire to share with others what she discovers, especially about African – Americans.

Winter 2020 employee exercise class schedule

The Winter semester employee exercise schedule begins Monday January 6.

NO classes the week of Spring Break (March 2-6), and concludes on Thursday April 30.

For descriptions of the classes and information on the regular schedule, visit the webpage.

Please take note: The first week requires that we move around a few classes due to the Opening Day & Learning Day activities. Please review the details below:

  • Tuesday Jan 7 — Gentle Yoga (6:45-7:30 a.m.) will meet in Room 212 FFH (normally will meet in 213 FFH)
  • Wednesday Jan 8 — Butts & Guts (5:15-6:00 p.m.) will meet in Room 212 FFH (normally will meet in 213 FFH)
  • Thursday Jan 9 — Bootcamp (12-12:45 p.m.) CANCELLED

Start the year off right and make your body and mind feel well!

GRCC In the News, 12-17-19

The USA Team qualifier announced for Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie

Dec. 16, 2019; So Good

The selection of the USA team that will participate in the Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie 2021 will take place on February 28, 2020.

The Secchia Institute for Culinary Education at Grand Rapids Community College in Grand Rapids (Michigan) will be the scene of this qualifier, where finalists will be evaluated by a jury composed of members of previous US Pastry Team.

Technology holiday shutdown reminders

As we get closer to our Holiday shutdown period, IT is asking you do a few things before you leave for break.

  • Set up an email vacation rule letting those that contact you know when you’ll return to the office.
  • Shut down any computers in your office space before your last day of work. IT does not plan to push out any updates to systems over the break.
  • Shut down any printers in your area
  • Update your voicemail greeting indicating your leave dates

Thank you for your help and we hope you have a safe and enjoyable holiday break!


GRCC In the News, 12-16-19

One Good Thing: Grand Rapids Community College holds clothing drive

Dec. 13, 2019; WZZM

“And now for the last ‘One Good Thing of the Week’ – someone or something that makes Grand Rapids a great place to live. Living in a northern climate, we see clothing drives a lot of times during the winter. I want to highlight one of them today. This one was put on by one of our local colleges, and by all measures, it looks like it was really successful. Grand Rapids community College held a one-day clothing drive and collected everything you see here. They asked people to drop off gently used winter items at the Wisner-Bottrall Applied Technology Center, and they set aside time for anyone who needed something, either for themselves or their kids, to stop by and pick it up. Winter’s tough – we know it – and sometimes people need a little help to get through it. So GRCC and the people who put on the drive and everyone who donated to that winter clothing drive gets today’s One Good Thing.”

Ionia County Sheriff’s Office adds three deputies

Dec. 14, 2019; Ionia Sentinel-Standard

IONIA — A desire to work with the community is the main focus for the three newest deputies at the Ionia County Sheriff’s Office.

… (Prentice) Carter, 25, graduated from the Grand Rapids Community College Police Academy in 2015. He has worked stints at the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office and Lowell Police Department before coming to Ionia County. He began on Monday, Dec. 9.

… (Jayson) Tovar, 22, grew up in Belding and graduated from Belding High School in 2015. He graduated from the GRCC Police Academy in April. Ionia County is Tovar’s first gig.

In the business of rejects

Dec. 13, 2019; Grand Rapids Business Journal

Two brothers who grew up during the age of Amazon are making a living off its excess.

Ross Kunzi, 22, who is a 2018 graduate of Grand Valley State University, and his brother, Blake Kunzi, 20, a current student at Grand Rapids Community College, opened Grand Rapids Liquidators on Sept. 14.

Encourage students to apply for Campus Election Engagement Project

What is the Campus Election Engagement Project? 

Campus Election Engagement Project (CEEP) is a national non-partisan project that helps America’s colleges and universities get as many of their 20 million students as possible to register, volunteer in campaigns, educate themselves, and turn out at the polls. We teach administrators, faculty, staff, and student leaders to use their institutional resources to engage students.

Position: Institutional Fellow at GRCC

Overview: Fellows will lead their campus with voter registration, voter education, and voter engagement events leading up to the 2020 elections. Fellows should use the CEEP assessment to develop and implement a plan on their campus on how administrators, faculty, staff and student leaders can help register and engage students in the election process. Ultimately forming a team type approach for their school.  Fellows will receive orientation, training support and guidance from CEEP. This position is for the spring 2020 collegiate semester, with the potential of extending through fall 2020.

Selection Process: Fellows must currently be enrolled in courses. They will be selected by campus advisors and confirmed by CEEP staff.

Terms of Service: January 20, 2020 – May 22, 2020

Payment: $500

Semester Hours: 100 hours

Description: CEEP fellows will organize various election engagement events on campus, while building leadership skills with other fellows and organizations both at the state and national levels. Through this fellowship you will work to institutionalize voter engagement efforts, leaving a lasting legacy for students to come. Nonpartisan engagement contributes skills that look good on a resume and are applicable to all job fields.

Specific things to expect:

  • Schedule biweekly CEEP check-in calls with CEEP State Director or National Fellowship Director to troubleshoot campus plan and provide additional support;
  • Collaborate and partner with student organizations, campus administrators, and faculty to organize voter registration, voter education, and voter engagement efforts on your campus;
  • Plan and complete at least 4 – 8 election engagement deliverables documented in the activity tracker;
  • Compose and submit an end of semester report summarizing activities and accomplishments.


  • Currently enrolled students with a positive and friendly attitude;
  • A commitment to educating peers about the importance of voter registration and becoming an informed voter;
  • Self-starters who take initiative to develop and implement their work plans;
  • Not presently serving in a fellowship role for another partisan or nonpartisan organization;
  • Flexible with time commitments and interest for voter registration/voter education;
  • Willingness to participate in initial orientation/training, and maintain regular contact with CEEP staff.

Please share with students who you think would have interest in applying. Please direct them apply at this link.


Employee event coming in Winter 2020!

BRRRR … Are you cold? Wanna warm up and swim and play in 82 degree water?

Well… soon you can enjoy this paradise with your family! No, we’re not sending you on a Caribbean vacation … but we have something just as fun in store!

A FREE Employee Family Swim event at the Ford Fieldhouse pool has been organized for Saturday, February 22, from 10 a.m.-12 p.m.

The online sign up form and more details will be posted here in GRCC Today after the holiday break.

Happy Holidays!

Winter 2020 employee exercise class schedule

The Winter semester employee exercise schedule begins Monday, January 6.

There are no classes the week of Spring Break (March 2-6), and concludes on Thursday April 30.

For descriptions of the classes and information on the regular schedule, please go online.

Please take note: The first week requires that we move around a few classes due to the Opening Day & Learning Day activities. Please review the details below:

  • Tuesday Jan 7 – Gentle Yoga (6:45-7:30am) will meet in Room 212 FFH (normally will meet in 213 FFH).
  • Wednesday Jan 8 – Butts & Guts (5:15-6:00pm) will meet in Room 212 FFH (normally will meet in 213 FFH).
  • Thursday Jan 9 — Bootcamp (12-12:45pm) CANCELLED.

Start the year off right and make your body and mind feel well!