GRCC hosting three ArtPrize entries on Dr. Juan R. Olivarez Student Plaza

Grand Rapids Community College will be a part of ArtPrize as the event returns this week, hosting three outdoor entries on the Dr. Juan R. Olivarez Student Plaza.

ArtPrize is the international art competition celebrating artists who work in all mediums. Starting Thursday, the entries will be on display for 18 days.

The three entries at GRCC are located on the south end of Olivarez Plaza. 

Liz Albert and Shane VanOosterhout, working under the name Liz and Shane Studio, installed “Instant Classic,” a project based around discarded Polaroid photographs.

The artists, friends since childhood, add poignant and humorous phrases to the outsized prints of the photos.

“In today’s digital universe, we remain transfixed by the Polaroid camera’s clever design and the vibrant memory-object it leaves behind,” they wrote for their artists’ statement.

Albert is a Grand Rapids native now living in Boston. VanOosterhout is an adjunct digital media professor at Kendall College of Art and Design and is a coordinator with the Grand Rapids Center for Community Transformation.

Niarus Walker’s “Good Breeding Stock” consists of two sculptures made from recycled coax cable debris salvaged from Hurricane Maria. The sculptures are a male and female, with the lower half of the male becoming a bull and the lower half of the female a cow. Each is breaking a chain.

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My Story Started at GRCC: Grand Rapids Gold Vice President Trey Conner connects basketball and community service

Trey Connor smiling.

Start at GRCC and go anywhere. Every former student has a story to tell about how GRCC gave them the education and opportunity to be successful. “Consistency, patience and hard work.”

Trey Conner attributes his success to those three characteristics — and GRCC got him off to a good start, too.

Conner graduated from GRCC with an Associate of Science in 2007 and then earned a bachelor’s degree in health, physical education and fitness from Western Michigan University in 2011.

After a few years as a P.E. teacher, he was presented with a unique opportunity: helping to start a minor league basketball team for the Detroit Pistons. The team has a new affiliation for the upcoming season – affiliating with the Denver Nuggets – and Conner has a new role, serving as vice president.

The Grand Rapids Gold start its NBA G League season in November at the DeltaPlex.

While it might seem like a career change, Conner has always considered his work with the team to be an extension of his commitment to community outreach.

The team works closely with area schools, visiting classrooms, organizing basketball camps, and coordinating a reading club that rewards students with tickets, gear and other prizes. When team organizers were seeking a new affiliate, they were adamant that they wanted to remain a part of the West Michigan community.

Conner says the same abilities he tapped as a teacher serve him well in running a sports team, as do the skills he built as a GRCC student.

“My time taking classes at GRCC helped set my foundational values with communicating, working with others, and goal setting,” he said.

“GRCC is a great foundational starting point to your successful journey.”

Let GRCC help you start your story. The first chapter starts at

New Shipping & Receiving Clerk

Avonte Braden-Love smiling.

Please take time when you see her to welcome Avonte Braden-Love to Shipping and Receiving.

Avonte has assumed the role of Shipping & Receiving Clerk, so you will see her bright and cheerful face all over campus delivering your parcels.

Avonte brings years of GRCC experience given her prior role in Facilities. Please help me welcome her!

Matthewson Mansfield

New Coordinator of Student Success & Retention

After several months of vacancy, I’m excited to share that Denise Jones will fill the role of Coordinator of Student Success & Retention beginning Monday, September 13. 

Many of you know Denise from her recent role as a Success Coach within the College Success Center where she has provided passionate, attention-oriented support for students. Denise is truly a dedicated advocate and soldier as it relates to promoting individual and collective student success and we’re thankful that she will be embarking upon this new role.  

In this role, Denise will primarily work with students for whom concerns have been raised via Navigate Early Alert.  These are typically concerns due to overall academic performance and/or other observations that result in a faculty concern about a student’s ability or opportunity to be successful.  In doing this she may very well lean on many of you and the resource(s) that you provide as she walks alongside students in a spirit of support, accountability, and encouragement. 

You can learn more about Denise by reading her GRCC Bio at this link.  

Please join me in congratulating her. Welcome aboard Denise!!!

Raynard Ross, Associate Dean, Student Success & Retention

2021 Van Marinus Swets Award Winner shares photos from trip to zoo

Danelle Sedore, who won Honorable Mention for her essay in the 2021 Van Marinus Swets Award competition, shares some photos and says, “Just wanted to follow-up on the Trip to the Zoo. What a great time we had at the Zoo. Our dearest friends joined us and with their Zoo status, we went on a private tour stopping at the giant turtle exhibit to help feed them their breakfast. It was a beautiful sunny day! Thanks again for the opportunity to explore.”

ODEI: John Leguizamo at GRCC now available on Vimeo

John Leguizamo smiling.

#GRCCequity kicked off Latino Heritage Month with Emmy and Tony Award winner John Leguizamo. Join us for a rebroadcast of the entire event, available on Vimeo with password access.
Password: odei2021

The recording is available until October 12

Share your feedback about the presentation on social media using the following hashtags #GRCCequity #LHM #Leguizamo.

We also invite you to provide feedback on our survey:

What happened / Que Paso?
Due to a scheduling conflict and restrictions related to Covid-19, the discussion was telecast live on Sunday, September 12, 2021.

Honors Projects support for Faculty

The Honors Program has experienced a record increase in both current and prospective students for Fall 2021. As a result, faculty members should anticipate students requesting to collaborate in Honors Projects. We hope that if approached, faculty will help students in the design and facilitation of these projects. The Honors Program is here to help and support faculty over the next several weeks in the design/facilitation of their Honors Projects.

Here’s a presentation with basic information about Honors Projects. 

Here’s an overview of an Honors Project Timeline

Here’s an overview of an Honors Project Timeline - see presentation.

If you have questions or suggestions, please email Jonnathan Resendiz at

Flu shot clinic set for tomorrow, Sept. 15

This flu season, don’t get caught without your flu vaccine. Protect yourself by getting vaccinated. It is even more critical to get a flu shot this particular flu season because of the added complexities brought on by COVID-19.

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Flu Shot Clinic for GRCC Staff and Faculty (no students)

Flu shots will be administered by Spectrum Health Visiting Nurses

Scheduled: Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Time: 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.

We are taking precautions to keep everyone safe, we ask that you schedule an appointment to get your flu shot. We have two locations to choose from. Schedule your appointment today!

SNEDEN HALL ROOM 108-Schedule Flu Shot Appointment

ATC AUDITORIUM-Schedule Flu Shot Appointment

Don’t forget to bring your BC/BS insurance card to receive a flu shot at no charge. Employees covered under the WMHIP- health plans must bring their BC/BS insurance cards in order for Spectrum Health to bill on your behalf.

No health insurance, no problem. The cost to GRCC staff will be $20 cash or check payable to “Grand Rapids Community College.”

We recommend you complete the Influenza Vaccine Consent  Form  and bring with you to the flu shot clinic.


Employees must wear face coverings in all public spaces. Vaccines cannot be given without a mask. 6 ft. social distancing is required for all employees waiting for their vaccine, as well as while inside the Flu Shot Clinic Area.

Spectrum Health Nurses will be screening employees the day of the Flu Shot Clinic for any COVID Symptoms. If any employee has symptoms of COVID and/or have been sick in the past 14 days, we ask they do not attend the Flu Shot Clinic.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Debra Davis at (616) 234-4175 or Maria Belmares Herrera at (616) 234-4052

GRCC In the News, 09/14/2021

Quick Hits 9/13

September 13, 2021; The Lanthorn (Grand Valley State University student newspaper)

… Over the Labor Day weekend, Chelsea Brehm, a Grand Valley State University alumna and leader in women’s sports, was recognized as one of four women who have made a difference in sports. On Sunday, Sept. 5, the Whitecaps audience took a moment to snap a few pictures of Brehm with Roxy the River Rascal as she accepted flowers.

Brehm graduated from GVSU in 2010 with a B.A. in Physical Education and an emphasis in Sport Leadership, later getting her M.Ed. in Adult Higher Education to work in the GVSU Sports Management department for a few years. She also worked at Grand Rapids Community College and Western Michigan University for various teaching jobs in the sports department.

GRCC earns $1.2M grant to help adult learners access higher education

September 14, 2021;

A five-year, $1.2 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education will support Grand Rapids Community College’s effort to help adult learners enter or return to higher education.