GRCC professor Mursalata Muhammad works to honor legacy of her inventor grandfather

Mursalata Muhammad

English professor Mursalata Muhammad is building a collection of documents and artifacts from the life of her grandfather, working to honor his legacy and recognize the contributions he made as a Black inventor.

While Muhammad’s project, which she’s named The Claude Harvard Project, is personal, she plans to use it in her English classes to show the value of doing primary research.

“I can say, ‘I did this work,’” she said of how she plans to create personal connections to research with her students. “Now I have such a rich appreciation for it.”

Muhammad’s grandfather, Claude Harvard, invented more than 25 items at Ford Motor Company in Detroit, but he’s still not credited for all of his work. She’s working to change that by building awareness and finding as many resources as she can to link Harvard to his work. 

“The biggest part (of the project) is to trace and figure out which inventions should have his name on them,” said Muhammad, who has taught at GRCC for 20 years. 

One of Harvard’s first inventions was the automated piston pin measuring machine, which used radio waves to check, shape and sort piston pins by size. As an example of the prejudice he faced, an advertisement for the machine first featured Harvard but later was changed to replace him with a white man.

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GRCC baseball game at LMCU Ballpark a celebration of community colleges, alumni and athletics

Baseball team.

Admission and parking will be free for Friday’s baseball game between Grand Rapids Community College and Kellogg Community College at LMCU Ballpark, home of the West Michigan Whitecaps.

The doubleheader is a celebration of community colleges and their sports programs, and looks to be an enjoyable afternoon with two top teams competing in a doubleheader. Games are scheduled to start at 2 p.m. and 4:30.

The games also will be live streamed on the Internet by Michigan Sports Radio at

The health and safety of spectators and participants is a top priority. GRCC is strictly following state and local health authority protocols at LMCU Ballpark, formerly known as Fifth Third Ballpark. Attendance will be limited to 2,500 spectators – far below the ballpark’s 9,000-person capacity. All attendees will be required to have their temperature checked, wear a face covering, and respect social distancing guidelines.

Spectators are asked to park in the lot on the ballpark’s south side, near the main entrance, and enter through Gate A.

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Language Arts Online Tutorial Lab (LA.TUTORLAB): MLA 8 Citation workshop

Next week Wednesday, April 21, the Language Arts Lab is hosting the final MLA citation workshop of the semester.

We’ll spend about a half hour reviewing MLA 8 in-text citation and works cited conventions, and during the last half hour you will have the opportunity to ask any specific MLA citation questions you might have. We look forward to seeing you there!

MLA 8 Citations ~ Wednesday 4/21 @1pm

MLA 8 4_21_21.pdf

Faculty and staff, please pass this information on to our students!

Please feel free to reach out with any questions or concerns to Maria McKee at | (616) 234-4244

Evidence Based Selection Process update

We’re happy to provide this update on our work to implement Evidence Based Selection Process for our staff positions. 

Our Human Resources Project team began setting this in place in October 2020.

Here are some “fun facts” about the last six months and this transformational work.

  • We started with an announcement and video to the Strategic Leadership Team in October.
  • We’ve conducted five EBSP virtual training sessions, and 63 employees have learned about this important process.
  • We’ve completed 10 subject matter expert sessions for all 10 of our job families. The subject matter sessions validated all of the job analysis work that was done during our cohort sessions. A special shout out and thank you to all of the subject matter experts who participated.
  • We currently have 30 active searches at the moment; 16 of these searches are in EBSP.
  • We completed seven searches through EBSP.  We’ve already seen a reduction in our time to hire dashboard measurement.  Our average time to hire is 43 days (measuring the date the posting closes to the date an offer is extended). Our old screening committee hiring process typically averaged 60-plus days for staff positions. We’re excited about providing this more efficient process for our hiring managers and our applicants!
  • I asked one of our hiring managers for a testimonial on their EBSP experience. David DeBoer, executive director of Financial Aid, reported:

“The EBSP process is a great help to hiring. Three positions in the Financial Aid Department have gone through the process, and we have seen the benefits. The pre-planning helped us think about goals and department culture. It helped us think about what type of person would be the best fit. This helped us as we conducted interviews because we had a better idea of how a candidate would fit within our department.”

Two more training sessions will be offered in April or May.  Anyone is welcome to come and learn about EBSP.

A special thank you to Dr. Pink and all of the Executive Leadership group. You have been so supportive of our learning, design and implementation of EBSP. The hiring managers involved thus far have been supportive, too.  Thank you!

And a huge shout out to the HR project team.  Laura Caulk, Danielle Flaumenhaft, Jessica Berens and I have all been working hard to design and implement the changes. 

HR also wants to announce the hiring of a temporary HR professional who will assist us with EBSP searches for the next six months.  Michelle Chapo joined our team this week and we’re working to bring her up to speed as quickly as possible.

Cathy Kubiak ~ Exec Dir of Human Resources