Retirement bio of Maureen Milarch

Maureen was hired as the first Assistant Director at the GRCC Early Childhood Learning Laboratory, in January 2014, she served in this role for eight years.

Maureen shares that she was fortunate to work with the two populations she enjoys most: preschoolers and college students. She says, “When I feel blue, all I need is to walk into any of the classrooms at the ECLL. The children are always welcoming and joyful!”

In addition to her work at the ECLL, Maureen appreciated the opportunity to teach Child Development classes from time to time. “My college students give me hope for the future of education.”

Maureen will stay busy in retirement dividing her time between the family farm near Traverse City, Michigan and her new place in Clearwater, Florida. “There’s no place I’d rather be than in Northern Michigan during the summer, but I’m pretty sure I’m going to love the winter in Clearwater!” Maureen will likely find something to do part time in Florida to keep her busy, but she’s in no hurry.

Maureen shares her thanks to the GRCC community for supporting the ECLSS with their beautiful building and also for supporting the early childhood profession through the first-class education GRCC provides to its Child Development and Education students. When these students graduate from GRCC, they are employment ready!

Congratulations and best wishes Maureen!

Retirement bio of Dan Clark

Dan Clark has been an administrator at GRCC for nearly 20 years. He began as the director of the Thompson MTEC in Holland in September 2003. He was promoted to Dean of the Lakeshore Campus in 2006 and then Dean of Academic Outreach in 2008.

Dan shares that he has had the privilege of working with four presidents and four provosts in his time at the College. Each challenged and supported growth of off-campus operations in a way that allowed Dan to use his gifts and talents to do so.

The positions Dan held provided him with the opportunity to meet and serve external stakeholders and to build relationships whereby these stakeholders would partner and support the college community. Dan says, “I was truly blessed to do so.”

At the same time, Dan was blessed to work with so many staff from internal academic departments, student service departments, IT departments, and business office departments.

Dan recalls a special memory that enhanced his sense of belonging at GRCC.

“When Hurricane Katrina hit back in 2005, a small group of faculty and staff, myself included, drove down to see what we could do to help residents and businesses that had survived this massive hurricane. It was a great time of bonding with my college colleagues and to share the experience of helping others that had, in some cases, lost everything.”

In retirement, Dan is planning to hit the road in his RV and travel around the United States with his lovely wife, Cherie.

Lastly, Dan would like to give a special shout out to the Lakeshore Campus staff and Academic Outreach staff. “It has been a pleasure to serve with each one!!!”

Congratulations and happy trails in your retirement Dan!

Golden: GRCC baseball player Caleb Engelsman one of nine in nation to earn ABCA/Rawlings Gold Glove award

Grand Rapids Community College baseball player Caleb Engelsman is one of nine NJCAA Division II players to receive this year’s ABCA/Rawlings Gold Glove award.

Engelsman was a two-way baseball player for GRCC, He batted .309 and had 15 extra base hits and pitched 58 innings, the second-most among GRCC players, while picking up five wins. But it was his superb defense that won him the Gold Glove award, posting a .963 fielding percentage.

Players are selected for the award by the National Junior College Athletic Association Division II Baseball Committee.

“Caleb defensively is as good as I have seen at the JUCO level,” head coach Mike Eddington said. “It’s not easy being a two-way player in college and it didn’t affect him defensively. He worked daily on his infield drills and it’s great to see his hard work has paid off.”

The Rockford native also was named Second Team All-Conference for his play on the field and Michigan Community College Athletic Association Western Conference All-Academic – for the second season – for his work in the classroom.

Engelsman is committed to play at Indiana Wesleyan University next season and is preparing to study medicine.

The baseball team which finished the 2022 campaign second in the MCCAA Western Conference and in third place in the region. GRCC’s season included a 17-win streak that was snapped in the late rounds of the NJCAA Region 12 tournament.  

Calvin Syrjala was the most recent GRCC player to earn a Gold Glove, getting the honors in 2019.

GRCC women’s cross country team excels on the course and in the classroom, earning MCCAA academic honors

Grand Rapids Community College women’s cross country team members had a fantastic year in competition – and in the classroom, too.

The women’s cross country team — which finished seventh in the NJCAA D2 National Championships —  compiled a collective grade point average of 3.52, the sixth-highest of any team in any sport competing in the Michigan Community College Athletic Association, which announced academic awards this week.

The GRCC volleyball team, with a 3.23 GPA, and the golf team, with a 3.20 GPA, were also saluted by the MCCAA for having grade point averages above 3.0.

“I’m proud of what our student-athletes accomplished,” Athletic Director Lauren Ferullo said. “Our coaches and staff make academic success a priority and our students work hard. That is reflected in these honors. We’re preparing them for long-term success, beyond their playing days.”

The MCCAA honors student-athletes by naming them with Academic All-Conference and Academic All-MCCAA awards, in addition to MCCAA All-Academic Team awards.

To earn MCCAA Academic All-Conference honors, student-athletes must earn at least 24 credits with a 3.0 GPA or higher. For Academic All-MCCAA honors, a student-athlete must earn at least 24 credits with a 3.2 GPA. For a team to be recognized as an MCCAA All-Academic Team, teams must earn a cumulative 3.0 GPA.

All of the GRCC teams competing this past year had at least one student-athlete recognized on the MCCAA Academic All-Conference team, with a total of 33 student-athletes. There are 27 student-athletes recognized for earning Academic All-MCCAA honors.

Earning MCCAA Academic All-Conference Academic awards are: Austyn Adams, Blake Waibel, Brady Owen, Caden Van De Burg, Caleb Engelsman, Dylan Chargo, Joe Hoeks, and Ryan Dykstra of the baseball team.

Also earning the honor are Brockton Kohler and Myron Brewer of the men’s basketball team; Ashton Brennan, Caleb Peterson, Christian Martinez-Ramos, Craig Fuller, Joshua Kipkoech, and Zachary Richards of the men’s cross country team; and Arie Jackman, Bradley Vandenhout, and Matthew DenHartigh of the golf team.

Also named to the Academic All-Conference team are Alena Visnovsky, Annie Holesinger, Audrey Gower, Audrey Torres, Kara Hecht, Ola Nowak, and Zari Kruger of the volleyball team; Karissa Ferry, who played both volleyball and basketball; Marlene Bussler and Sally Merrill of the women’s basketball team; and Alex Webster, Allison Hoop, Audrey Meyering, and Rose Meyer of the women’s cross country team.

Earning All-MCCAA Academic awards are Adams, Weibel, Owen, Van De Burg, Engelsman, Chargo, Hoeks, Dykstra, Kohler, Brewer, Peterson, Fuller, Jackman, Vandenhout, DenHartigh, Visnovsky, Holesinger, Gower, Torres, Hecht, Nowak, Kruger, Ferry, Bussler, Hoop, Meyering, and Meyer.

School News Network Feature: GRCC band class opens for students who aren’t music majors but enjoy performing

A School News Network feature — Students don’t have to be a Grand Rapids Community College music major to perform as part of a campus band this fall.

Campus band is designed for non-music majors who would like to continue playing a band instrument in college, or music majors who want to perform on their non-major instrument, as well as anyone from the community. 

In her first year as GRCC’s director of bands, professor Shannon Shaker is taking the lead on organizing and leading campus band musicians.

“Not everyone needs to major in music,” Shaker said, “but having those opportunities provides more people in the community with a place to come and experience really wonderful music education.” 

The band will meet Mondays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., making it more accessible to those who work or take classes during the day.

Non-GRCC students can apply for free as a “guest student” or “personal interest student” on GRCC’s admissions page. Once an account is confirmed, search for the “horizon” section of campus band to enroll. The cost to enroll in campus band is $20.

This story was reported by Alexis Stark of the School News Network.

Tech Tip: Alumni Online Center Trigger

Do you work directly with students and alumni? Alumni that haven’t taken a class in over ten years may not have an Online Student Center account.

You can assist them by updating either their email address or phone number in Peoplesoft. This will trigger their account to create. Within a few hours, the user will be able to recover their username and password on the MyGRCC portal.

Once signed in, they can access their Online Student Center. If they are unable to access their account after that time period, please direct them to the IT Customer Support Desk and we will be happy to assist them.

First Time User Instructions

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 06/23/2022

Getting the band back together

6/22/22 (Kent Intermediate School District)

Grand Rapids — Anyone can be a musician once again at Grand Rapids Community College, when the campus band returns in the fall.

GRCC students selected for Johns Hopkins graduate program

6/22/22 Grand Rapids Business Journal

Three Grand Rapids Community College students were accepted to a five-month program at Johns Hopkins Schools of Medical Imaging.

News at 10 p.m.

6/22/22 FOX 17

(Coverage of Traverse City Pit Spitters game, mentioning GRCC alum Ryan Dykstra.)

Lack of parts and mechanics adds weeks to car repairs in Michigan

6/23/22 Automotive World (United Kingdom)

Redline had 42 cars lined up for repairs one day last week, and service times that once took days now may take as long as three weeks.

… Chad Lodenstein, who leads the automotive department at Grand Rapids Community College, said this is the highest demand for car mechanics in the job market he has ever seen.

Dean of STEM candidate presentations on 6/28, 6/29, 6/30

The Dean of STEM screening committee invites the campus community to attend the candidate presentations. 

The presentations are available in-person and virtually. We would encourage anyone who can attend in person to join us in ATC 168 (Auditorium). 

Candidate 1: Tuesday, June 28 from 2:00 – 3:00 pm in ATC 168 or live streamed

Candidate 2: Wednesday, June 29 from 11:00 – 12:00 pm in ATC 168 or live streamed

Candidate 3:  Thursday, June 30 from 11:00 – 12:00 pm in ATC 168 or live streamed.