Things to do in GR during Winter

Got cabin fever? Want to get outside and do something fun in West Michigan? Check out these great suggestions brought to you by the Wellness Champions Team. 

World of Winter Festival — January 7 – March 6, 2022

Grand Rapids Parks – Lists all the parks, features and a separate link with Trails and maps/lengths

FREE – Chilly Challenge (this is through Experience GR but Caroline Cook set it up…2 more left

Experience GR has lots of great info about things to do in GR!

Caroline Cook leads EXCELLENT tours of downtown Grand Rapids


Muskegon Luge Park – cool and not too far away!

GR Kids – sledding hills in the area

GRCC GEAR UP Wyoming Campus visits & college credit

For the last two Saturdays, GEAR UP Wyoming has been on the move. Cohort 10th graders and parents visited Davenport University on January 29 and Ferris State University on February 5.

Families learned about program offerings, financial aid, toured campus facilities, dined in university cafeterias, and watched basketball games in the afternoons.

And GU students aren’t waiting for 2024 graduation to start college. More than forty GEAR UP Wyoming sophomores at Kelloggsville, Wyoming, Godfrey Lee and Godwin Heights have already earned credits at GRCC through dual enrollment or Middle College coursework. 

Homecoming 2022 activities include first Young Alumni Award winner, meals, and basketball

The introduction of Grand Rapids Community College’s first-ever Young Alumni Award winner, breakfast with presidents, and basketball games against rivals Kalamazoo Valley Community College are among the week of activities featured in this year’s Homecoming.

While a number of the activities are taking place remotely, others will be conducted in person with wellness protocols as the campus faces challenges created by the pandemic.

“There is truly something for everyone in this year’s Homecoming celebration,” said Lina Blair, director of the Office of Student Life. “We’re proud of who we are and what we do at GRCC. It’s exciting to recognize our alumni – and our future alumni – with activities that are fun, informative, and inspirational.”

Additional information is available at

Friday, Feb. 11:

  • It’s Spirit Day! Employees, students, alumni, families, and even pets are encouraged to show their spirit by wearing your GRCC attire. Take individual or team photos for a chance to win prizes.

Monday, Feb. 14:

  • GRCC’s first-ever Young Alumni Award winner will be announced on social media. The GRCC Foundation is honoring alumni age 40 and younger, highlighting accomplishments and sharing inspiring stories about how a GRCC education is vitally important to launch educational journeys and careers.
  • A virtual Student Organization Mixer is planned for 2-4 p.m. Representatives from groups across campus will be available using REMO and will share information about opportunities and activities.  Registration isavailable here.

Tuesday, Feb. 15:

  • Have breakfast with GRCC President Bill Pink, Student Alliance President Brendan Burke, and other student leaders. Grab-and-go meals will be available between 9 and 10:30 a.m. on the fourth floor of Raleigh J. Finkelstein Hall.
  • Get vaccinated or boosted. We’re all fighting the pandemic together. GRCC’s latest vaccination and booster clinic is planned for 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on the fourth floor of Raleigh J. Finkelstein Hall.
  • We’re celebrating leaders, events and opportunities during Black History Month. The GRCC Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is hosting a virtual keynote address at 6 p.m. featuring LaTosha Brown. She is a 2019 fellow with The Institute of Politics at Harvard University, is an award-winning organizer, philanthropic consultant, political strategist, and jazz singer with over 20 years of experience working in the non-profit and philanthropy sectors on a wide variety of issues related to political empowerment, social justice, economic development, leadership development, wealth creation, and civil rights. Details about registration are available here.

Wednesday, Feb. 16

  • Employees are invited to a Winter Warm-up presented by the GRCC Human Resources Department. Three kinds of soup will be available as a grab-and-go meal between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. at Sneden Hall Room 103 and Student Center Room 234.
  • Students can participate in a BINGO night sponsored by the Campus Activities Board in the Raider Grill between 5:30 and 7 p.m.
  • Learn how to create a charcuterie board with alumni Chef Jennifer Fillenworth. Jennifer is executive chef at Roots Farmacy, a graduate, and an adjunct professor at the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education. You also watched her on television when the emerged victorious on Food Network’s “Supermarket Stakeout.” The free class will be on GRCC’s YouTube channel and go live at 7 p.m.

Thursday, Feb. 17

  • Leslie Tassell M-TEC employees are invited to a Winter Warm-up presented by the GRCC Human Resources Department. Three kinds of soup will be available as a grab-and-go meal between 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. at the M-TEC.

Friday, Feb. 18

  • It’s Spirit Day! Show your Raider Pride by wearing your GRCC attire. The winner of the Raider Spirit photo contest will be announced.
  • Raiders on Ice! GRCC students, employees and alumni are invited to skate for free between 5 and 10 p.m. at Griff’s Ice House Address: 30 Coldbrook St NE in Grand Rapids.

Saturday, Feb. 19

  • The Big Game! The GRCC men’s and women’s basketball teams are taking on the rivals at Kalamazoo Valley Community College. The action will be available for viewing online. The women’s team tips off at 1 p.m., with the men’s team starting at 3 p.m.

CTE Sessions offered in February

Please check out the CTE Calendar and Programming page for registration instructions and descriptions of all the workshops and sessions offered. 

  • Bounce Back with Student Life ~ Wednesday, February 9 from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
  • Building Community in the Online Classroom ~ Thursday, February 10th and February 24 from 12:00 to 12:45 p.m. ~ Register with Garry Brand 
  • What is Whiteness ~ Thursdays, February 10 – 17 & 24 from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. (Registration for this workshop will close this Thursday, February 10 at 4:30 p.m.
  • I Didn’t Sign Up to Teach Online, But Here I AM! ~ Friday, February 11th from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
  • Faculty Conversations on Open Educational Resources ~ Friday, February 11 from 12:00 p.m. to 12:45 p.m. ~ REGISTER HERE
  • Understanding Today’s Veteran ~ Thursday, February 17 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
  • LGBTQ+ Panel Discussion ~ Friday, February 18 from 1:30 to 2:15 p.m.
  • They/Them/Pronouns ~ Thursday, February 24 from 8:00 to 9:00 a.m.

GRCC In the News 02/07/2022

Grand Rapids Community College plans COVID-19 vaccine clinic with booster shots Feb. 15

2/4/22 MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Grand Rapids Community College is hosting a COVID-19 vaccine clinic with booster shots available to the community this month.

First-gen college grad gives credit to parents, K-12 years

2/4/22 (Kent Intermediate School district)

Caledonia  — Hours before ringing in 2022, Caledonia High School alum Amer Bektaš sat in the announcers booth, calling the Orange Bowl playoff football game in Miami, Florida for the University of Michigan student radio program, WCBN Sports

… Grand Rapids Community College served as the bridge for Amer to knock out introductory level classes and gain two years’ experience as a first-generation college student. 

Journalist shares mission, story behind The 1619 Project

2/4/22 (Kent Intermediate School District)

The truth cannot destroy us, journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones, Pulitzer Prize-winning creator of the The 1619 Project and a staff writer at The New York Times Magazine, told an audience of more than 600 during a virtual event Monday evening.

Hannah-Jones was keynote speaker for the 27th Annual Diversity Lecture Series at Grand Rapids Community College. The question-and-answer formatted event was titled “Crossroads: Academic Freedom and (the) Ivory Tower.” B. Afeni McNeely Cobham, chief equity and inclusion officer and executive director for the Woodrick Center at GRCC, and equity fellow Leslie Neal interviewed Hannah-Jones. 

Deputy Todd Frank to retire after 29 years of service

2/4/22 The Post (Cedar Springs)

Deputy Todd Frank, 53, of the Kent County Sheriff’s Office, has come full circle. He started his first full-time job as a police officer working for the Cedar Springs Police Department in 1995, and within a couple of weeks, he will end his career here as well, after 25 years with the Kent County Sheriff’s Office. 

… Dep. Frank grew up in Kentwood and graduated from Kellogsville High School. He attended Grand Rapids Junior College (GRCC) to get a radiology degree, but then switched to criminal justice, and also attended the police academy. From 1993-1995, he was with the Kent County Sheriff Reserve; from 1993-1994 he had a part time job with the Lake Odessa Police Department; and in 1995, he was hired full time by the Cedar Springs Police Department. In 1997, he was hired as a county patrol officer by the Kent County Sheriff’s Office.

2022 Excellence in Education Awards

The GRCC family is full of amazing and outstanding people . . . people who care, people who go above and beyond, people who bring the very best of themselves to the work that they do.
True excellence is alive at GRCC. We are all fortunate to be a part of a community of educators who make GRCC shine both inside and out. There are special individuals who make learning at GRCC meaningful and impactful for our students and working at GRCC an honor and inspiration for fellow employees.

To recognize them, please take the time to nominate them for the annual GRCC Excellence in Education Award.

Recipients of the full-time faculty, adjunct and staff award each receive $1,000, and a $1,000 contribution to the GRCC Foundation is made in the recipient’s name.

Anyone can nominate! The deadline for nominations is May 13, 2022.

The application has gone online! This makes the entire process faster and easier.

Start HERE and select either Full Time Faculty, Adjunct, or Staff. 
Faculty & Adjunct: Email the Provost Office at
Staff: Email Angela Salinas at angelasalinas@grcctoday

Thank you for taking the time to nominate a deserving member of the GRCC family for these awards.

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.

GRCC plans Feb. 15 clinic to provide students, employees and community members COVID-19 vaccinations, boosters

Student getting a vaccine.

Grand Rapids Community College is planning a COVID-19 vaccination clinic for students, employees, and community members for 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 15 on the fourth floor of Raleigh J. Finkelstein Hall, 143 Bostwick Ave. NE.

No appointment is needed for the clinic, the latest in a series conducted at the college. About 350 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: (or QR Code below)

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.