My Story Started at GRCC: Alison Bieber found her voice, and her path, at GRCC

Alison Bieber smiling.

Alison Bieber found her voice – and her path – at GRCC. Now she works to help others find their voices.

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.

After graduating from high school, Bieber needed time to figure out her future so she enrolled at GRCC.

“At a young age, people are pushing you to figure out what you want to be when you grow up, and you receive a lot of backlash if you are going into the performing arts,” she said. “I was able to ‘try out’ the career option that everyone was telling me to avoid, and – guess what – it worked out!”

“Worked out” might be an understatement. After earning her associate degree in vocal performance, Bieber received a bachelor’s degree in vocal performance from the Boston Conservatory and a master’s degree in linguistics from the University of Massachusetts.

Early in her career, she provided music lessons for adults with developmental disabilities. She has since founded the Modulation Institute, which provides transgender and nonbinary people with vocal training and music lessons.

“I teach because of the people who have taught me,” Bieber said. “My purpose in life became driven by sharing my knowledge with others, as my teachers shared with me.”

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

Save the date for the Campus Winter Blood Drive on February 02, 2022

As you might be aware blood banks are at an all time low right now!

The Office of Student Life & Conduct is in need of folks to sign up for their next blood drive on Wednesday, Feb. 2.

Versiti Blood Center will be on campus from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

To schedule an appointment, visit Mobile Drive Schedule: Grand Rapids Community College. Walk-ins are welcome.

For Covid-19 protocols, visit Coronavirus Information.

All donors will receive a $10 e-gift card as a special thank you. SIGN UP TODAY!

Email questions to

Happenings in the CTE

Supporting Multilingual Students ~ Wednesday, January 26 ~ 3 to 4 p.m. – Virtual

What is Whiteness ~ Thursday, February 3, 10, 17 & 24 ~ 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. ~ Virtual

This Workshop is facilitated by Werner Absenger and Sasha Ahmed from the GRCC Culinary department. It’s a 4-Part Series that must be taken in succession. If you’re interested please contact Toy McNeal at to get the book that goes in part with this course.

Bounce Back with Student ~ Wednesday, February 9th ~ 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. ~ Virtual To read the descriptions of the sessions posted, please click on the CTE Calendar and Programming Page.

GRCC In the News 01/17/2022

GRCC to host COVID-19 vaccine clinic next week

1/14/22 FOX 17

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Grand Rapids Community College is hosting a COVID-19 vaccine clinic Wednesday, Jan. 19.

How colleges are honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, hosting Day of Racial Healing

1/14/22 University Business

“We Cannot Walk Alone. A Day On, Not a Day Off.”

… Several dignitaries will headline events, including former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who will headline the Martin Luther King Regional Celebration presented by Saginaw Valley State University on Wednesday; poet Nikky Finney at Vanderbilt University’s MLK commemoration on Monday; singer and civil rights icon Bettie Mae Fikes at Penn State University Scranton on Tuesday; journalist Lisa Ling at the University of Nebraska on Thursday; and Cheryl Brown Henderson, daughter of Oliver Brown of the famed Brown v. Board of Education case, at a combined event from Davenport University, Grand Valley State University and Grand Rapids Community College on Monday.

$9 million awarded to tax-funded early childhood programs in Kent County

1/14/22 MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Kent County’s early childhood millage has awarded $9 million to 28 programs this year aimed at improving the health and school readiness of children up to age 5 in the county.

… The groups that received program funding this year are Comprehensive Therapy Center, Early Learning Neighborhood Collaborative (ELNC), Grand Rapids Community College (GRCC), Kent ISD’s Bright Beginnings, Ready for School and Vibrant Futures.

Saturday Morning News

1/15/22 WZZM

(Basketball game food drive.)

W. MI community remembers Lena Meijer

1/15/22 WOOD TV

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Community members are mourning the death of Lena Meijer who died on Saturday at the age of 102.

… Grand Rapids Community College:

“GRCC extends condolences to the family of Lena Meijer. We are grateful for the support from the Meijer family for GRCC scholarships and renovations to Stewart White Hall. A life well-lived and a tremendous legacy.”

GRCC program aims to train hundreds of people for Industry 4.0


Grand Rapids Community College and workforce development organization West Michigan Works! have launched a program aiming to make big strides in preparing participants for the future of manufacturing.

Lansing Community College women’s basketball has win streak halted by GRCC

1/16/22 Lansing State Journal

GRAND RAPIDS – Elysia Causley had 12 points for the Lansing Community College women’s basketball team in its 66-35 loss to Grand Rapids Community College on Saturday.

Impact of landmark Brown v. Board of Education case is focus of 2022 Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration Day keynote

Cheryl Brown Henderson will talk about the landmark Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court case and its impact as the keynote speaker for the 36th Annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemoration.

Henderson is one of the three daughters of the late Rev. Oliver L. Brown, who, in 1950 along with 12 other parents and attorneys for the NAACP, filed suit on behalf of their children against the local Board of Education.

Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka was the 1954 Supreme Court case in which the justices ruled unanimously that racial segregation of children in public schools was unconstitutional. Brown v. Board of Education was one of the cornerstones of the civil rights movement.

Grand Rapids Community College, Davenport University, and Grand Valley State University collaborate annually on events for Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Commemoration Day. The 2022 keynote is planned for 6 p.m. Jan. 17 at Fountain Street Church, 24 Fountain Street NE in Grand Rapids.

The event is free and open to the public. Doors open at 5 p.m. Attendees can register at

“Our annual celebration amplifies Dr. King’s historical reflections and philosophies of attaining a fair and just society,” said Latoya Booker, Davenport’s executive director of diversity, equity and inclusion. “Cheryl’s presentation – ‘Brown v. The Board of Education: The Legacy Continues,’ will inspire attendees to take on persistent barriers to advancing educational equity. We are proud to bring Cheryl to Grand Rapids to share her message with our greater community.”

Henderson is the founding president of The Brown Foundation for Educational Equity, Excellence and Research, and owner of Brown & Associates, an educational consulting firm.

Henderson founded the Brown Foundation in 1988. It has provided scholarships to more than 100 students of color; presented awards to local, state and national leaders; established libraries for children in low-income communities; developed curriculum on Brown for educators across the country; and sponsored programs on diversity and educational issue.  

The Foundation in 1990 successfully worked with Congress to establish the Brown v. Board of Education National Park in Topeka, Kan., which opened in May 2004. The Foundation in 2001 successfully worked with Congress to establish the Brown v. Board of Education 50th Anniversary Presidential Commission, which served to provide a federal presence in the 2004 anniversary of the Brown decision.

Henderson has an extensive background in education, business and civic leadership, having served on and chaired local, state and national boards. She also has two decades of experience in political advocacy, public policy and federal legislative affairs.

Henderson has a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education from Baker University in Baldwin City, Kan., a master’s degree in Guidance and Counseling from Emporia State University in Kansas. She has an honorary doctorate of Humane Letters from Washburn University and an honorary doctorate of Education from the University of South Florida.

To request accommodations to attend this event, please contact the Davenport Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at This event will be held in accordance with local, state and/or federal COVID-19 guidelines.

For more information or to RSVP for the event visit

GRCC Athletics, Student Life team up to help fight food insecurity by offering free admission to fans donating to Food Pantry

Grand Rapids Community College Athletics is teaming up with Student Life to support students challenged by food insecurity, offering reduced price or free admission to two upcoming basketball games in exchange for food donations.

Spectators who bring three canned food items to the Saturday, Jan. 15 games against Lansing Community College or the Wednesday, Jan. 19 game against Muskegon Community College will be admitted free. Those bringing two canned items will be admitted for $1, and fans bringing one canned good will be admitted for $2.

On Saturday, the women’s basketball game starts at 1 p.m. with the men taking the court at 3 p.m. On Jan. 19, the women start at 5:30 p.m. with the men tipping off at 7:30 p.m.

All of the canned goods will be donated to the GRCC Food Pantry, which has served thousands of students since the start of the pandemic.

“The Athletics Department is part of our campus community, and it’s important for our student-athletes to be leaders on and off the court,” Athletic Director Lauren Ferullo said. “This is an opportunity to support our campus food pantry, but also raise awareness of the problem of food insecurity and how it affects our students.”

GRCC’s Food Pantry and snack pantries are designed to meet the immediate food needs of its students on campus by providing a variety of non-perishable food items and basic necessities to students and their families.

GRCC’s Food Pantry is located in the Student Center, and is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday. Students can visit the pantry weekly. Students can register in the Student Life Office.

There are 10 snack pantries located across campus, providing grab-and-go options including granola bars and microwavable soups. They are maintained in partnership by Student Life, the English department, Psi Beta, Counseling and Career Development, Library and Learning Commons and the Tassell M-TEC. The Snack Pantries do not require registration and food is provided when available.

Information is available at

“We’re so appreciative of GRCC Athletics, and all of the student and community groups that have supported the Food Pantry,” said Lina Blair, GRCC’s director of Student Life and Conduct. “Many of our students struggle with food insecurity, and the problem intensified during the pandemic. We’re fortunate to have a supportive community to help students overcome this obstacle.” 

Students can connect with additional campus and community resources at

The food drive is part of a conference-wide effort organized by the Michigan Community College Athletic Association.

GRCC plans Jan. 19 clinic to provide students, employees and community members COVID-19 vaccinations, boosters

GRCC plans Jan. 19 clinic to provide students, employees and community members COVID-19 vaccinations, boosters

Grand Rapids Community College is planning a COVID-19 vaccination clinic for students, employees, and community members for 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 19 in the Raider Grill in the Student Center, 122 Lyon St. NE.

No appointment is needed for the clinic, the latest in a series conducted at the college. About 300 people have so far been assisted in campus vaccination clinics.

The clinic will offer COVID-19 vaccinations as well as booster shots. Vaccines have been determined to be the most effective tool in preventing serious illness and hospitalization due to COVID-19.

People wishing to obtain the vaccines or booster shots can save time and create an account and fill out the required vaccine form in advance:

The clinics are part of a series of wellness protocols intended to help GRCC students, employees and community members.

The campus is requiring face-coverings indoors, and has posted face-covering dispensers near entrances in many buildings.

On-campus class sizes are limited to 75 percent capacity, and the college has replaced two-person desks with single-person desks in most classrooms.

The college also has installed new furniture for common areas that is intended to help with distancing.

Hundreds of hand sanitizing stations were added since the start of the pandemic, and changes were made to campus cooling and ventilation to increase air flow.

College leaders are monitoring developments with COVID-19 and its variants, and are communicating with state and federal health authorities for guidance as conditions change.

GRCC’s mission is to serve its community, and the campus has played a role in fighting the pandemic. GRCC Nursing students in 2021 administered shots into the arms of students, campus employees, and others in the spring as part of the Shot of Love campaign, a partnership with Urban Church Leadership Center and Spectrum Health.

In May, the college hosted a campus vaccination pop-up clinic, which was visited by first lady Jill Biden.

Nominations being sought for 2022 Emeritus Faculty Award – due by noon on Feb. 11

You are invited to nominate a GRCC retired faculty or administrator for the Emeritus Faculty Award.

This award was established in 1985 to honor those instructors and administrators whose dedication and creativity have left an indelible mark on the lives of students and colleagues at GRCC. 

During their tenure at GRCC and since their retirement, they have continued to promote GRCC’s “Commitment to Excellence.”

Please submit online nominations by noon on Friday, February 11, 2022.  For more information, please visit the website.