GRCC English professor Mursalata Muhammad selected for residency with award-winning poet Thomas Lynch

A Grand Rapids Community College English professor has been awarded a monthlong residency at the home of poet and essayist Thomas Lynch.

Professor Mursalata Muhammad is the first recipient of the Sweeney Memorial Boat House Residency at Lines End. The Lynch & Sons Fund for the Arts initiative is designed to encourage emerging writers and includes a stipend as well as the residency on the south shore of Mullett Lake in Cheboygan County.

Muhammad, who has taught at GRCC for 20 years, is completing her first manuscript of poems.

“I’m beyond grateful for this residency,” she said. “It comes with two resources I often lack: a place and time to write. I’m looking forward to four weeks of writing while staying in a boathouse, which has a lovely lakefront view.”

Muhammad has a bachelor’s degree in English and communications and a master’s in English, both from Oakland University. She is working on her doctorate in Antioch University’s Leadership and Change program.

She is known for her innovative approaches to distance learning – which was especially useful during the pandemic.

In December, students in her creative writing class had questions about Lynch’s work, which led to the author joining the class via Zoom.

Lynch shared his perspective on the process of writing and finding inspiration, then listened as students read their own work to him, providing feedback and encouragement – often with humor. You can watch it here.

Muhammad served on the state Education Department’s K-12 Social Studies Standards Bias Review Committee and is a member of the Michigan American Council on Education Women of Color Collaborative. She was awarded the Leadership Skills Champion Award from the Grand Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce’s Community Leadership in 2013.

The Sweeney Memorial Boat House Residency honors the late Irish poet Matthew Sweeney, who wrote his limited-edition chapbook, “On Mullett Lake,” while spending time at Lines End in 2016.

Here to Help: Matt Langton focuses on connecting fellow student veterans with support services to be successful

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 Matt Langton. As a Veteran2Veteran lead guide, Matt provides peer advising and support for GRCC’s Veteran Services department. Veteran Services provides support for military connected students as they transition from military to civilian student life.

Matt is focused on connecting with student veterans, educating them about the services of the Veteran Center, and providing them ongoing support. This support could include helping student veterans adjust to college life, helping them address challenges they may face as a student or a veteran, and referring them to appropriate resources on and off campus.

“Veterans2Veterans is a new program we are implementing on campus this semester,” Matt said. “I get excited talking to other student veterans and discussing what we have available to them. I want all student veterans to be aware of our facility and resources so they can connect with us on campus.”

Matt is also a finance major at GRCC. He was initially planning on attending the college for one year. But because of the great experiences he has had so far, he is now planning to transfer to Davenport University through a 3-1 transfer program where he will attend GRCC for three years, and then graduate from Davenport with a bachelor’s degree after attending there for one year.

Matt attended an out-of-state university after his military service. He remembers that university not being very military friendly, so he’s thankful for the support and commitment GRCC has for their student veterans. Matt understands what it’s like for a military connected student to consider attending college, go through the admissions and enrollment process, and then study and attend classes on campus and online, and navigate student services on campus.

“I want student veterans to feel comfortable reaching out to our department so I can assist them however I can,” says Matt. “From providing a comfortable space for studying or socializing, to sharing knowledge and resources to help them meet their goals.”

GRCC has a history of being a veteran-friendly campus, and just held a Grand Opening of the new Veteran Center, located on the G2 level of Raleigh J. Finkelstein Hall on the college’s main campus in Grand Rapids.

The center will provide one-on-one advising, Veterans Administration work-study positions, tutoring and academic support, and assistance in completing the VA education benefits process. Staff will also connect veterans with other campus resources, including financial aid, advising and disability support. The project also will expand GRCC’s partnerships with state and local veteran’s agencies, helping students access benefits and support in the community.

Students can connect with the Veterans Center by phone at (616) 234-2578, and by email at Additional information is at

GRCC volleyball coach Chip Will wins 400th game, surrounded by student-athletes past and present

Surrounded by student-athletes past and present, Grand Rapids Community College volleyball coach Chip Will celebrated his 400th career victory, with his team battling back to beat rival Muskegon Community College in five sets.

The Raiders, ranked No. 7 in the nation, ran their victory streak to 12 matches and remain in first place in the Michigan Community College Athletic Association’s Western Conference.

Alumni and families swarmed onto the court after the deciding fifth set, celebrating the milestone win with balloons and signs. That support, Will said, was more important to him than the victory.

“I think after 15 years we’ve been able to build something special – something people want to come back to,” he said. “It’s really, really awesome to see alumni come back, and so many families here. That’s what it’s about. At the end of the day, the wins are great. But having this culture of family and togetherness — that’s what’s most important.”

GRCC has become a national volleyball powerhouse during Will’s coaching tenure, which includes a national championship in 2012, 10 regional championships and nine conference crowns.

“I want to share huge congratulations to coach Will on 400 victories,” said Dr. Christopher J. Parker, president and CEO of the National Junior College Athletic Association. “A milestone that he should be very proud of and I certainly appreciate all of his dedicated service to the college, the student athletes and the association.”

Will also had 10 student-athletes earn National Junior College Athletic Association All-American honors, including Kendra DeJonge, who earned the title in 2017 and 2018.

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ODEI honors PRIDE OUTside the Box

All events are at Noon (EST) and virtual

𝗠𝗼𝗻𝗱𝗮𝘆, 𝗢𝗰𝘁𝗼𝗯𝗲𝗿 𝟭𝟭
Indigenous People’s Day, Latino Heritage Month, & National Coming Out Day

Latin𝑿: Unpacking the experiences of transgender and non-binary communities.

𝗕𝗿𝗶 𝗦𝗲𝗿𝗿𝗮𝗻𝗼 is a first-generation student, neurodiverse/Latinx/ trans/ masc/ non-binary, and queer scholar of intersectional transgender studies.

Per the speaker’s request, the event will not be recorded.

𝗪𝗲𝗱𝗻𝗲𝘀𝗱𝗮𝘆, 𝗢𝗰𝘁𝗼𝗯𝗲𝗿 𝟮𝟳
The Politics of Anti-Fatness as Anti-Blackness

𝗗𝗮’𝗦𝗵𝗮𝘂𝗻 𝗛𝗮𝗿𝗿𝗶𝘀𝗼𝗻, a fat, Black, disabled, and nonbinary trans writer, abolitionist, and community organizer, facilitates workshops on Blackness, queerness, gender, fatness, disabilities, and the intersection at which they all meet.

𝗧𝘂𝗲𝘀𝗱𝗮𝘆, 𝗡𝗼𝘃𝗲𝗺𝗯𝗲𝗿 𝟵
𝑁𝑎𝑡𝑖𝑣𝑒 𝐴𝑚𝑒𝑟𝑖𝑐𝑎𝑛 𝐹𝑖𝑙𝑚 𝑎𝑛𝑑 𝐴𝑟𝑡
A film screening & talkback with 𝗕𝗲𝗻-𝗔𝗹𝗲𝘅 𝗗𝘂𝗽𝗿𝗶𝘀, director of Sweetheart Dancers.

Adrian and Sean are the “𝗦𝘄𝗲𝗲𝘁𝗵𝗲𝗮𝗿𝘁 𝗗𝗮𝗻𝗰𝗲𝗿𝘀,” who broke ground in powwow communities by entering the popular couples competition. They are the first “Two-Spirit” couple to enter the competition and continue to pave the way for LGBTQ Indigenous people.

PRIDE OUTside the Box illuminates scholar-practitioners, artists, and initiatives that critically examine socio-political, economic, and identity issues from an intersectional framework (Crenshaw, 1989).

National Coming Out Day (NCOD) – Monday, October 11

NCOD is a day of celebration where we honor those who have the courage to stand up and stand out as their authentic selves, while continuing to fight for those who cannot do so safely. Come join GRCC as we celebrate authenticity as well as the official “coming out” of our newest College Action Project, the LGBTQ+ Inclusive Fundamentals Team!

The purpose of the new CAP 3.4 LGBTQ+ Inclusive Fundamentals Team is to establish GRCC as a college of choice by providing a welcoming, supportive, and inclusive experience for LGBTQ+ faculty, staff, students, and the larger GRCC Family. We are official and we are fighting for inclusivity.

The event will be held Monday, Oct. 11 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in front of RJF Hall on the Dr. Juan R. Olivarez Student Plaza. We look forward to seeing you there and welcome any questions you have about the new CAP!

We also want to highlight our community advocates and partners: Grand Rapids Pride Center, StandOut, Grand Rapids Trans Foundation.

Human Rights Campaign resource: Celebrate National Coming Out Day with HRC!

Tech Tip: Resetting your GRCC Password

The MyGRCC password expires every 120 days. To avoid any potential login issues, we recommend resetting your password at the beginning of every semester. To change your password, login to the MyGRCC Portal, and select Hello, USERNAME in the upper righthand corner and select Change Password. Once your password is reset, it will sync with all of your accounts immediately except for email which will take an additional 15 minutes.  

Please Note: If prompted to change your password at login on a campus computer, make sure to follow the requirements for a new password. Passwords need to be at least 10 characters long, have at least one capital letter as well as one number.

If you set a password that does not meet these requirements, it will not sync across all your accounts. If you are noticing you need to use multiple passwords to login to your accounts, please reset your password through the MyGRCC Portal to ensure it will sync. 

Resetting Your Password

For more information and helpful tips, please visit the IT Customer Support Portal or contact the IT Customer Support Desk at x4357.

If you have a suggestion or a Technology Tip you think can be useful, you can submit them by emailing 

GRCC In the News, 10/08/2021

GRCC celebrates opening of new Veterans Center in Grand Rapids

October 7, 2021; The Holland Sentinel

GRAND RAPIDS — Grand Rapids Community College commemorated the opening of a new space on its main campus dedicated for student veterans Wednesday, Oct. 6.

GRCC to build Secchia Piazza

October 7, 2021; Grand Rapids Magazine

Grand Rapids Community College is adding a new piazza to its culinary program.

Meet the Leaders Taking Action for Families in America

October 7, 2021; Aspen Institute

In order for America to thrive, our families must thrive. This is the understanding of Ascend at the Aspen Institute, a program dedicated to mobilizing systems, policy, and social impact leaders who are working to create a world where every family passes a legacy of well-being from one generation to the next. This week, the Institute announced that 19 leaders were selected for the 2021 Ascend Fellowship, an 18-month-long program that brings together innovators from diverse backgrounds to build political will, change systems, and drive policy that benefits the well-being and prosperity of all children and families in the US. 

… Daniel Williams, President & CEO, The Steelcase Foundation

As a leader in education and equity-centered design, Daniel works to advance justice through education and community engagement. Before assuming his role at the Steelcase Foundation, Daniel worked to advance equity and innovation throughout Michigan at the West Michigan Center for Arts and Technology and co-founded Grand Rapids University Prep Academy. He was elected to the Board of Trustees for Grand Rapids Community College, appointed by then-Governor Rick Snyder to the Michigan Consortium of Advanced Networks, and appointed by Governor Gretchen Whitmer as vice-chairperson of the MI-STEM Council. 

 Morning News

October 8, 2021; FOX 17

(Volleyball coach Chip Will’s 400th win.)