GRCC boosting ways to help with FAFSA, access free-tuition programs

Student in class writing notes in a notebook.

The number of Grand Rapids Community College students completing federal financial aid forms has increased dramatically in the last year, but many students are still potentially missing out on grants and programs to make college more accessible and affordable.

GRCC is boosting ways to assist students filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, also known as FAFSA.

The number of FAFSA forms submitted to GRCC for the 2021-2022 academic year is up by nearly 2,000 applications, about 44 percent.

That’s the opposite of state and national trends, according to the National College Attainment Network. But GRCC leaders say there are many students who can still take advantage of financial aid opportunities.

“The FAFSA application is unquestionably the key to accessing scholarships and financial aid programs that can reduce or even eliminate college costs,” said Dr. Tina Hoxie, GRCC associate provost and dean of Student Affairs. “GRCC is focused on helping students complete their FAFSA. We don’t want anyone to miss out on a life-changing education.”

FAFSA is an online form that requires financial and tax information for students and parents, if the students are dependents.

Students can connect with GRCC financial aid specialists by phone at (616) 234-4030; email at; text at (616) 219-8224; or virtually or in-person by appointment.

GRCC has a series of helpful videos available on YouTube’s GRCCtv.  

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CTE – March 2021 Newsletter

The CTE March 2021 Newsletter is available here.

Quality Matters (Asynchronous Online Course)
Starts Tuesday, March 9
Facilitated by Mursalata Muhammad and Ian Matthews.  Register here

Portfolio Training (virtual via Zoom)
Friday, March 12 from 1-2p.m.
Facilitated by Dan Sullivan and Chris Johnston Register here

Rethinking Mental Health (Virtual via Zoom)
Monday, March 15, 3-4p.m.
Facilitated by Werner Absenger Register here

COMMUNITY SERVICE – Feeding America West Michigan
In-person, off campus
Thursday, March 18 from 1-4p.m.
6 spots left!
Facilitated by Laura Kennett Register here

ADHD Goes to College (virtual via Zoom; students welcome)
Wednesday, March 24 from 1-2p.m.
Facilitated by Laura Kennett Register Here

Faculty Showcase (virtual via Zoom)
Thursday, April 15, 2021 Time TBD
Faculty to be featured: Meghan VanderMale, Wilfredo Barajas, Drew Rozema, John Dersch, Bill Faber, Sam Gould, Rachel Lutwick-Deaner
Facilitated by Laura Kennett

Online Hybrid Certification Course (Asynchronous Course)
Monday May, 10 – Sunday June, 20
Facilitated by Garry Brand Register here

Great Teachers Seminar (in-person, limited number of registrants)
Monday, August 2nd to Wednesday, August 4th.
Applications open soon! More information here
Facilitated by Deb Vilmont

Summer Institute (virtual, online, and in-person)
Wednesday, August 4 – Friday, August 6
Learning tracks include: Assessment; Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion; Learning-Centered Teaching Practices
Please provide input or suggestions here
Facilitated by Laura Kennett and Deb Vilmont

Excellence in Education Awards
Thursday, August 26 (nominations close May 14)

IT Notification – Off-Campus Technology Reminders

Information Technology has three important reminders for you as some of us continue working remotely.

  • Your campus network password expires every 120 days. If you experience a loss of access to one of your accounts, you can update your password here or by clicking on the Forgot Password link located on the MyGRCC sign in page. This will replace your password across all GRCC services with the exception of your Windows login password on any GRCC issued laptop. To sync a new password with your laptop login, simply visit campus and log into the laptop with the expired password once more.
  • If your equipment has not been on campus since March you may begin seeing a loss in functionality to Microsoft Office and Windows 10. To avoid any loss of functionality, simply stop by the parking lot of the Administration Building and connect to the GRCC Secure wireless network. Restarting your device and connecting to our Secure wireless network for a minimum of 15-30 minutes will revalidate your Office and Windows licenses automatically. If you choose to come into a campus building, we kindly ask that you fill out the COVID Return to Campus form and wear a mask per our current campus protocols. 

Note: We understand, however, that not everyone can visit campus. If you’re not able to stop by, please call Information Technology’s Support Desk at 616.234.4357 and we can discuss alternative options.

  • Windows updates are critical for maintaining your computer’s functionality and security. While away from campus you should be regularly checking for updates. Remember, Microsoft updates require a system restart. Complete these steps only when you’re at a good stopping point. You’ll be notified several times before your computer restarts.  

Checking for Microsoft Updates  

  1. Expand the Start Menu.
  2. Click the Settings Icon.
  3. Click on the Update & Security button.
  4. Click the Check for updates button.
  5. Wait for Windows to check, download, and install your updates. You will need to restart your computer when prompted to complete this process.  

Note: If you receive a message stating your device cannot connect to an update point, proceed to the Checking Online for Microsoft Update section.

Video of steps 1 to 5 above.

Checking Online For Microsoft Updates  

Complete this section if you encountered an error message during the above section.  

  1. Expand the Start Menu.
  2. Click the Settings icon.
  3. Click on the Update & Security button.
  4. Click the Advanced Options link.
  5. Toggle the Download updates over metered connections switch.
  6. Click the Back button.
  7. Click the Check online for updates from Microsoft Update.
Video of steps 1 to 7 above.

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Faculty, staff cap and gown orders due February 26

The GRCC Bookstore is taking orders for caps and gowns for staff and faculty through February 26. If you need any commencement regalia please stop in the bookstore and fill out the form to order yours today!

Due to turnaround time and production needs, all orders and prepayments must be in by February 26, 2021 to be ready in time for the April GRCC Commencement ceremony.