GRCC adjusting commencement plans to provide safe, in-person experience

President Pink.

Grand Rapids Community College is changing its commencement plans to provide students with a safe, in-person experience while responding to the recent increases in COVID-19 cases.

The college is proceeding with plans to hold four in-person commencements, but attendance will be limited to graduating students with no graduate-invited guests attending the ceremonies. Family members will be able to watch the events virtually on GRCC’s YouTube channel.

School of Arts and Sciences ceremonies are planned for 4 and 7 p.m. on Friday, April 30. School of Workforce Development ceremonies are planned for 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 1.

“We’re making these changes out of an abundance of caution, along with other careful planning for an in-person commencement celebration experience for our students,” said Associate Provost Tina Hoxie, dean of Student Affairs. “Commencement is a special moment in the lives of our students. Streaming the events live will allow students to share this milestone with friends, family and other supporters since it is not possible for them to attend in person.”

Spreading out commencement over four ceremonies and two days will allow graduates to attend the event in the Gerald R. Ford Fieldhouse while socially distancing and following strict health and safety protocols.

GRCC continues to work with state and local authorities and monitor local conditions. GRCC might need to make additional adjustments to the commencement plan to ensure safety.

Additional details will be posted at

Highlighting staff who help our students

Always remember, at GRCC, you are surrounded by people who want you to be successful and are ready to walk with you on your educational pathway. We are here to help!

Meet Evan Macklin. Evan is GRCC’s Grand Rapids Promise Zone director, coordinating the college’s partnership with the Promise Zone Authority to provide tuition-free college to eligible students.

Evan is a GRCC grad who worked as a student employee before joining the team fulltime in 2009.

He’s helped students in roles in admissions and enrollment, counseling and advising services, Student Life, student orientation and the GRCC Foundation.

He’s passionate about connecting high school students with GRCC through the Promise Zone Scholarship, which he sees as a crucial first step toward a successful future.

The Promise Zone Scholarship provides qualifying high school students with access to attend Grand Rapids Community College for free, and pursue the academic, job-training or certificate program of their choice!

You can also hear Evan as one of the hosts of the My GRCC podcast, where he tells the stories of GRCC students and alumni.

Evan completed his Master of Education degree through Grand Valley State University in 2016. He also has a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from GVSU to go with his Associate of Arts degree from GRCC.

You can connect with the Promise Zone team by email at and phone at (616) 234-4321 and more information on the web at

GRCC women’s basketball team struggles against top opponent in NJCAA D2 National Tournament

GRCC’s women’s basketball team struggled in the opening round of the NJCAA D2 National Tournament, losing 86-49 to the top-ranked team in the country.

The Raiders’ season isn’t over, as the team will play again at 1 p.m. on Friday, April 23 in the consolation round.

A bright spot: GRCC head coach David Glazier was named Coach of the Year in the District C, National Junior College Athletic Association Great Lakes Conference.

GRCC is making its first trip to the National Junior College Athletic Association National Tournament for the first time since 1978.

The 12-4 Raiders were seeded 13th and faced a tough opening round opponent. Johnson County Community College, from Overland Park, Kan., is 20-1 on the season and was seeded fourth in the tournament.

GRCC hung close in the first and fourth quarters, but were dominated mid-game. The Johnson County defense smothered Player of the Year Shonyah Hawkins, limiting her to six points and two rebounds.

Eurasia Green-Boyd led the Raiders with 13 points and seven rebounds, and Danielle Lamancusa had 11 points and six boards. Jayla Bibbs had eight points and five rebounds.

GRCC is hoping to regroup in the next round, playing the winner of the game between Pima Community College and North Platte-Mid-Plains Community College on Friday.

GRCC offering free summer program to boost skills, prepare for college

Grand Rapids Community College is launching a free summer program for graduating high school seniors to help boost math and reading skills before they attend GRCC or another college.

Bridges to College – Raider Ready will be offered in two sessions in both Kent and Ottawa counties. The program will predominantly be offered on the GRCC Main Campus and the GRCC Lakeshore Campus in the Midtown Center. Some parts of the sessions will be offered online and the college is providing use of a laptop.

“The pandemic created challenges for both students and educators,” GRCC President Bill Pink said. “With this program, many students will benefit from both a refresher in foundational skills, as well as information that will prepare them for their college journey. Bridges to College – Raider Ready is one more way GRCC is serving its communities.”

Students also will work with college navigators, helping prepare them for the higher education experience.

The program is open to all high school graduates of the class of 2020 or 2021 who are planning to attend a college in the fall. 

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Van & Marinus Travel award for 2021

The coronavirus has transformed life as we know it, but that doesn’t mean we still can’t have fun!

The GRCC Foundation is happy to once again offer the Van & Marinus Travel award for 2021 – with a twist.  Employees may submit essays telling us how they intend to travel or relax, and still have fun during the pandemic this summer!

Please view the attached file for rules and deadlines.

Virtual Exam Cram

April 24 and April 25, 2021

As our students prepare for final exams, Academic Support & Tutoring Services is here to support them. Please pass this information on to our students.

Our popular Exam Cram event is going VIRTUAL again this semester.  On Saturday, April 24 and Sunday, April 25, students needing academic support or help with a last-minute question can connect with a tutor during these extended hours.  We use Zoom to provide virtual tutoring and in a typical session, students share their screen and have a live conversation with the tutor about whatever it is they are working on.

We encourage students to take advantage of the services we offer. All current GRCC students are welcome, and all academic support services are free.

Directions for connecting to online tutoring are available by clicking on the specific lab name in the chart.

 Saturday, April 24Sunday, April 25
Biology Learning or Ask a Tutor on Blackboard6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Business & Economics Tutorial Lab9:00 AM to 1:00 PM5:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Language Arts Tutorial Lab12:00 PM to 5:00 PM4:00 PM to 10:00 PM
Math Prep & Learning Lab1:00 PM to 6:00 PM1:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Mathematics Tutorial Lab1:00 PM to 7:00 PM1:00 PM to 7:00 PM

Please contact the ASTS Office with any questions.
(616) 234-4145

Rental returns

Faculty and staff please remind students rentals are due. It is greatly appreciated. 

The student will be charged non-return fees and we want to help them avoid that as well as get the books in the store for the next group of students.

Store Hours April 26 – May 1

Monday through Friday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Saturday 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.