Van and Marinus Swets 2022 Travel Award winners

Congratulations to the Van & Marinus Swets 2022 Travel Award Winners! The Foundation was able to award 8 travel awards to employees this year.

The winning essays were interesting and creative, just as Marinus would have liked.

Congratulations to:

1st place – Jason Hansen: $400

2nd place – Karen TenBroeke:  $300

3rd place – Karin Gallagher:  $200

Honorable Mentions:

  • Dennis Sutton: $100
  • Malinda Powers: $100
  • Susanna Lankheet: $100
  • Cynthia Browne: $100
  • Coryn Mittelstadet: $100

Thank you to all who submitted essays. The Foundation received a total of 26 travel submissions. 

We hope you all enjoy your vacations you have planned. We look forward to hearing from the winners and seeing pictures from their travels.

Safe travels!

GRCC partnering with DeWys Manufacturing to create on-the-job training program

GRCC welding student welding in MN 116 Basic Welding class.

Grand Rapids Community College is partnering with DeWys Manufacturing to create the company’s first accredited on-the-job training program.

The partnership helps DeWys Manufacturing team members continue or even start their education journey while receiving the financial and health benefits of being employed.

“Partnerships create opportunities to build skills and change lives,” said Julie Parks, interim dean of the GRCC School of Workforce Development. “The DeWys training starts a pathway to GRCC, where employees can continue their education, grow their skills in advanced manufacturing while earning a credential that can take them to the next level.”

DeWys University was developed in 2012 to sustain business through on the job training, creating the talent required to keep up with the company’s growth. The program is now an accredited manufacturing trade school.

During the 12-week course, team members will learn both theory and practice while receiving three to six credits towards their degree at GRCC.

The DeWys University welding program is the first accredited course offered, and the goal is to have all training programs added in the future including press brake, powder coating, machining, cutting, and assembly.

DeWys offers 100 percent tuition reimbursement as one of the many benefits to their employees, so this collaboration between school and employer offers the companies team members financial freedom from tuition payments with possible student loans and debt.

“Some could view this as a transition program that will allow mom and dad to recognize going from high school to work as a viable option because their child can get the best of both worlds; earn credits with Grand Rapids Community College while getting their hands-on experience,” said Dr. Laura Preuss, DeWys’ workforce development manager.

DeWys is committed to the success and safety of all stakeholders. With DeWys University now being an accredited training program, the company will continue to offer continuous improvement opportunities for all team members while staying optimistic for future growth of the DeWys team.

Internet Explorer- End of life

Internet explorer symbol - an e.

Beginning June 15, 2022, Microsoft will be retiring Internet Explorer.

If you are still using Internet Explorer as your default browser, please switch to another browser such as Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox or Microsoft Edge.

We have a helpful knowledge base article to assist you.

Any applications or sites that are traditionally only accessible in Internet Explorer can be opened in Microsoft Edge using the Compatibility Mode feature

If you use Internet Explorer for linking documents, you may now use any browser to complete this function. 

If you have any questions about this change, we encourage you to reach out to the IT Support Desk at 616-234-4357 or by visiting our Customer Support Portal at to submit a ticket. 

GRCC In the News 05/10/2022

Grand Rapids Community College Lakeshore Campus

5/3/22 Architect Magazine

Grand Rapids Community College has offered classes on the Lakeshore of West Michigan, across four disparate locations, for more than 20 years. In August 2021, the college celebrated the transformation of a former JCPenney department store into a vibrant learning hub for students with the grand opening of a new, centralized campus in The Shops at Westshore mall.

His dream: explore the world through taste

5/4/22 (Kent Intermediate School District)

Godfrey-Lee — Emanual “Manny” Hernandez-Cruz is a Kent Career Tech Center hospitality student and 2021 Lee High School graduate who attends GRCC’s Secchia Institute for Culinary Education.

Summer program helps prepare high school graduates

5/5/22 Grand Rapids Business Journal

A free Grand Rapids Community College program preparing graduating seniors for college has launched its second year. 

Four inducted into NJCAA Baseball CA HOF

5/5/22 NJCAA press release

Charlotte, NC – Four individuals who positively impacted and continue to advance NJCAA baseball have been inducted into the NJCAA Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, announced by the NJCAA National Office on Thursday. Rob Fournier, Doug Wabeke, Jeff Johnson, and Andrea Gordon have been enshrined into the reputable 2022 class. 

… A former student-athlete, Doug Wabeke played baseball at Grand Rapids and was a two-time All-American in 1977 and played at Central Michigan University, an NCAA Division I school, in 1979 and 1980. The shortstop earned All-MAC Conference honors and signed with the San Francisco Giants in 1980. 

Wabeke enjoyed stints in the minors with the Giants, St. Louis Cardinals and Pittsburgh Pirates, climbing as high as Class AA before returning to West Michigan in 1984. Wabeke then began his 17 year head coaching stint at Grand Rapids during the 1987-88 school year. The coach reached 500 wins in his 11th season, in 1998 and won four total national championships, the first four in school history for any sport (back-to-back titles in 1996, 1997, and in 2003, 2004). Wabeke completed his coaching career for the Raiders in 2004. Wabeke also spent time as the co-athletic director at Grand Rapids. 

GRCC’s free summer program prepares new high school grads for college success


A free Grand Rapids Community College summer program for recent and soon-to-be high school graduates is aimed at boosting foundational math and reading skills and preparing them for success.

College grad wears old academic suspension letter that triggered a change on his cap

5/5/22 MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Seth Noyes remembers tearing open an envelope from Grand Rapids Community College in 2017 that caused him to reevaluate his mindset about his education.

UMSI grads earn special honors

5/5/22 Press release from University of Michigan’s School of Information

Students at the University of Michigan School of Information continue to demonstrate exceptional academic ability and professional promise. Their dedication to service and their insight as advocates and empathetic leaders is vital to the future of technology and society. 

… To honor the professor who devoted many years to the development of the Bachelor of Science in Information program, UMSI created the John L. King Award in 2015. The award recognizes an outstanding student in the undergraduate program. 

… (William) Luna, a transfer student from Grand Rapids Community College, exemplifies a pioneering and engaging spirit. A constant advocate for the needs of community college students, he provides feedback to strengthen the pathways for these students to continue their education at UMSI. 

New Presidents or Provosts: Ferris State U, Houghton College, North Dakota State College of Science, San Francisco State U, Talladega College, Texas State U, U of Michigan, West Virginia State U

5/6/22 Inside Higher Ed

… Bill Pink, president of Grand Rapids Community College, in Michigan, has been named president of Ferris State University, also in Michigan.

Michigan GOP, Whitmer push college tuition aid plans. How their plans differ.

5/6/22 Bridge Magazine

As Michigan faces lagging college enrollment and a budget surplus, state leaders this year are proposing to spend more to make higher education more affordable.

… Some students entering community college are required to take remedial courses before they can take college-level course work. At Grand Rapids Community College, the university offers a free three-week program to help students strengthen their academic skills. If they retake their placement exam and score higher, they can save time and money by not having to take remedial courses. 

Federal dollars, creative leaders help two-year colleges post-COVID

5/6/22 American Council on Education

Community Colleges saw steep declines in enrollment during the pandemic. But creative leaders like President Bill Pink of Grand Rapids Community College are trying to reverse the trend. As he prepares to take on a new role as president at Ferris State University, he talks about how he used millions in federal and state dollars and other initiatives to invest in helping students continue their postsecondary journey and encourage access to college. Jon, Sarah, and Mushtaq also discuss the buzz around the White House’s plans for student loan forgiveness, the leaked Supreme Court opinion that could overturn abortion rights, and the status of U.S. research competitiveness legislation.

Ferris State unanimously votes for first African-American president in school history


MECOSTA COUNTY, Mich., (WPBN/WGTU) – Ferris State University unanimously voted to name Bill Pink as the school’s next president on Friday.

Pink, currently the president of Grand Rapids Community College, will become the first African-American president in Ferris’ 138-year history.

Ferris board officially votes on new president

5/6/22 WOOD TV

BIG RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Ferris State University Board of Trustees officially voted on Friday to name Bill Pink as its new president.

The vote was unanimous, the school said in a release. Pink is currently the president of Grand Rapids Community College, a role he started in 2017.

Bill Pink Officially Voted as Next President of Ferris State University


Ferris State University’s Board of Trustees officially voted to name Bill Pink as its next president Friday.

Pink is currently the president of Grand Rapids Community College, but he will begin his time as president for Ferris State University on July 11. He will be the first African-American president in Ferris’ history.

Bolstered by community, she navigates loss & looks to the future

5/6/22 (Kent Intermediate School District)

Kelloggsville – Angelina De La Cruz sits in a conference room at Kelloggsville High School and looks out a nearby window on a sunny spring day. Her eyes are teary, but her voice remains strong and composed as she recalls one of the worst days of her life, the day last December when her dad, Ambiorix De La Cruz, died of a sudden heart attack.

… Angelina will finish her senior year with both a diploma and one year of college credits. Next year she will head to Grand Rapids Community College for another year of college credits, and then will be able to transfer to a four-year university to complete a bachelor’s degree in just two years.

Grand Rapids Community College offering free program to prepare students for college

5/8/22 The Holland Sentinel

HOLLAND TWP. — A program from Grand Rapids Community College aimed at helping future students transition to college will return this summer. 


5/9/22 Community College Daily (American Association of Community Colleges)

… John Selmon has been named president of Muskegon Community College, effective July 1. He has served at the Michigan college since 2011 and is currently provost/executive vice president providing leadership and oversight for academic affairs, athletics, facilities and student services.

… Prior to MCC, Selmon was executive dean of student services at Lake Michigan College and also worked at Kennesaw State University and Davenport University Educational System. Selmon is also a proud student-athlete alumnus of Grand Rapids Community College. He was a National Junior College Athletic Association All-American wrestler on the college’s national championship team.

MCC recognizes instructors for their achievements

5/9/22 The Daily News (Greenville)

SIDNEY — Two Montcalm Community College instructors were honored during the college’s 55th Annual Commencement ceremony Friday at the college’s Sidney campus.

… (Math instructor Brianne) Lodholtz has earned degrees from Montcalm Community College, Central Michigan University, Grand Valley State University and Grand Rapids Community College.


5/9/22 Community College Daily (American Association of Community Colleges)

… Grand Rapids Community College offering free program to prepare students for college
Holland Sentinel
The Michigan college is hosting its Bridges to College Raider Ready program for the second year this summer. It aims to help future students transition to college.

Grand Rapids Community College Will Host Summer College Readiness Program for Second Year

5/9/22 Diverse: Issues in Higher Education

Grand Rapids Community College will again be hosting its Bridges to College Raider Ready program for the second year this summer.

How to get your department webpages ready for Summer 

As we’re wrapping up our winter 2022 semester, take a look at your department’s webpages to make sure everything is up-to-date for our start of summer 2022.

  • Are there any deadlines or date-oriented information on your webpages that have passed or need to be updated?
  • Is your bio/contact information still correct? If you want to make changes to your bio, simply log in at, navigate to your bio and submit the form for changes.
  • Are there any outdated events that need to be hidden or new events that need to be promoted?
  • Are your department’s office hours and contact information updated for holiday break and beyond?

Need help making these updates? If you’re a web editor, visit our Drupal User Manual or email and we’ll be happy to assist you.

Thank you for helping us keep up to date for students and our community!

2022 Excellence in Education Award nominations due May 13

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.

New benefit makes internet free for many Michigan families

Today’s announcement of partnerships with internet providers plus a $30/month subsidy for high-speed internet makes it free, or nearly free, for a large portion of Michigan families. The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is a U.S. government program run by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to help low-income households pay for internet service and connected devices like a laptop or tablet.

You are likely eligible for the ACP if your household’s income is below 200% of the Federal Poverty Line, or if you or someone you live with currently receives a government benefit like SNAP, Medicaid, SSI, WIC, Pell Grant, or Free and Reduced-Price Lunch. If your household is eligible, you could receive:

  • Up to a $30/month discount on your internet service
  • Up to a $75/month discount if your household is on qualifying Tribal lands
  • A one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer (with a co-payment of more than $10 but less than $50)
  • A low cost service plan that may be fully covered through the ACP

Today, several internet providers, including AT&T, Charter-Spectrum, Comcast-Xfinity, Frontier, WOW!, Verizon, and more, have announced high-speed internet plans for $30/month or less. If you apply your ACP benefit to one of these plans, you will have no out-of-pocket cost for your household internet.

Go to GETINTERNET.GOV to learn more.