Teaching, Learning, and Distance Education (TLDE) news

Summer Teaching & Learning Institute – We Need Your Input!

Planning is underway for this year’s summer institute.  Please complete this form to provide feedback that will help inform this year’s schedule and learning opportunities!  The form will be open until April 17.  

Reminder: Applications are open for the 2023 Great Teachers Seminar! 

The event will be held in Grand Rapids at City Flats Hotel on August 1 to 3 p.m. (Tuesday-Thursday) from 8:00 a.m to 4:00 p.m.  Read more on the Great Teachers website.  Please apply via this application link.  The deadline to apply is May 5th.

Reminder: Blackboard Ultra Base Navigation

On Saturday, May 6, between 9:00 to 11:00 a.m., GRCC IT will be updating Blackboard to incorporate the new Ultra Base Navigation. This new navigation has a sleek, modern look and feel, and will save you time with simpler workflows and easier access to important information.  Learn more on the Blackboard Ultra Base Navigation Transition Hub.  Visit the hub to view recordings of previous informational sessions.

Featured Upcoming Workshops/Events:

  1. Creating Effective Assessment – Wednesday, April 5, noon to 1:30 p.m. – In-person, 315 RJF Hall 
  2. Creating Effective Assessment – Wednesday, April 12, 3:00 to 4:30 p.m – Virtual
  3. Faculty Showcase – Wednesday, April 13, noon to 1:00 p.m. – HyFlex: ATC Theater and Virtual
  4. Winter Semester TLDE Faculty Liaison Office Hours, Virtually: Tuesdays 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. (email dvilmont@grcc.edu to request a virtual appointment).  
  5. Adjunct Faculty Support: Please reach out to Alyssa Spoolstra, Adjunct Faculty Liaison, via email to alyssaspoolstra@grcc.edu
  6. TLDE Office Information: The TLDE office location is RJF 373.  TLDE staff are available Mondays – Fridays from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. to assist you.  Please stop by the office, email tlde@grcc.edu, or call 616-234-3205 and we will be happy to help you!

Please visit CTE’s Calendar and Programming webpage for the current listing of all Winter 2023 Professional Development opportunities being offered by TLDE!

Learn From the Best: Erin Busscher helps students navigate more than class schedules

Erin Busscher smiling.

Erin Busscher did not plan to work in higher education, but has found her career in helping others navigate college. 

Busscher started as a student employee at Grand Valley State University and really enjoyed the environment and helping students succeed. She worked in various positions at GVSU for more than 10 years. She came to GRCC to serve as the Transfer and Articulation Coordinator. She quickly missed working with students and was able to step back into an advisor role. 

Now Busscher serves as an Associate Professor/Academic Advisor in the Academic Advising and Transfer Center. Academic advisors help students navigate their entire journey at GRCC. They help with career exploration, returning to school, transferring, and graduating. Academic Advisors are a crucial piece to ensuring student success. 

Helping students is Busscher’s favorite part of her role. She considers advising to be a lot like teaching. Advisors teach students what they need so they have the skills to be successful on their own. 

“Ask for help, always!” she said. “We do not know you are struggling, or if you need help, unless you reach out. We are here, waiting in the wings, to help you succeed! We may, also, annoy you with how much we reach out to offer help and try to be proactive to assist you, but it is only because we care.”

Busscher recalls one specific student who struggled with math. The student was in the lowest levels of math and english and spent several semesters remediating to get to a college level. The student persisted, earned high marks, and transferred to Grand Valley State University to earn her master’s degree in social work.

Busscher continues to support and stay in touch with the student. Writing letters of recommendation along her educational journey to help her get into the School of Social Work. 

Busscher finds joy in having the opportunity to help, and seeing the long term impacts of her work only makes her work harder.

Busscher earned her Bachelor of Arts from GVSU in Professional Writing with a minor in Public Relations. She then earned her Master of Education in College Student Affairs Leadership at GVSU. Erin is also certified as a Global Career Development Facilitator.

To connect with an advisor in the Advising Center visit grcc.edu/advising.

My Story Started at GRCC: Ryan Kauffman opens his own business and sends employees to GRCC for training

Ryan Kauffman smiling.

Ryan Kauffman is the owner and president of Control Solutions Inc, a locally based, nationally recognized Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning contractor. 

Start at Grand Rapids Community College and go anywhere. Every former student has a story to tell about how GRCC gave them the education and opportunity to be successful.

Kauffman began his HVAC career in 2004 when he began taking classes at GRCC. He completed an associate degree in Applied Art and Science at GRCC.

Kauffman transferred to Ferris State University, where he took night classes to complete his HVACR Engineering bachelor’s degree. 

He was thrilled by how easily his work with the GRCC HVAC program transferred into Ferris State University’s degree program. As a student working a full time job, Kauffman was impressed with the night time class offerings, and the professors who taught those classes. 

“I remember a class on local history that was very interesting,” he said. “Our professor knew the history of the city very well and brought more to the class than just reading a book. He took us on a tour and showed us all kinds of historical places and items along with the many stories of the things we were seeing. He went over and above to make the class fun and more than just for a grade.”

Professors understood life outside of school, and were typically very experienced in the workforce. Being able to bring real life experience into the classroom was incredibly impactful for students like Kauffman.

Even as an alumnus, Kauffman encourages students to take advantage of the cost effective educational opportunities that GRCC offers. He often sends electrical apprentices from his company to the GRCC Leslie E. Tassell MTEC Center for electrical apprenticeship classes. 

GRCC is a great local college that gives cost effective school opportunities to students to get their associates degree and to move onto higher degrees or into the workforce,” Kauffman said. 

More information about the HVAC Certificate can be found here

Start your GRCC story today here.

Jerad Berkenpas’ two-hit shutout sparks GRCC baseball sweep, softball splits against Delta

Baseball player swinging at a pitch.

Jerad Berkenpas’ two-hit shutout sparked the Grand Rapids Community College baseball team in a doubleheader sweep over Delta College on Friday.

The softball team dropped a tough two-run decision in the first game of a doubleheader against Delta, but bounced back and won by 11 runs in the nightcap.

Trevin Laming hit his third home run in his past four games in baseball’s game, one of seven total GRCC hits. Tommy Reid was 2-for-2.

Berkenpas needed just 88 pitches over his seven innings on the mound and struck out 12 batters while walking none.

In the second game, Connor Foley picked up his second win of the season after pitching a four-hit complete game.

Zacarias Salinas and Jacob Gumieny each had two of the team’s nine total hits.  Dylan Chargo hit his second home run of the season.

Four GRCC errors doomed the softball team in game one’s 4-2 loss.  Only one of the runs was earned for ace Izzy Regner who lost her first game after starting the season 6-0.  Regner struck out 14 batters while walking just two Pioneers.

Regner and Jaye Guichelaar each had two of the team’s seven hits.

GRCC’s offense exploded for eight runs over the first two innings in route to a 17-4 run-rule win over Delta in game two.

Regner connected on her second career homer in the top of the first inning and shortstop Brynn McArthur blasted her first collegiate homer in the bottom of the fourth.  

All nine starters had at least one hit for GRCC as it out-hit the Pioneers 13-4.

Both teams will resume their season series with Delta College on Sunday at 10 a.m., a change in the schedule due to the forecast.  The softball team will play a single game and the baseball team will play a doubleheader.

This story was reported by Ben Brown.

GRCC baseball pitchers throw third and fourth complete game in a row in Delta College sweep

Grand Rapids Community College’s baseball team’s starting pitchers tossed the team’s third and fourth consecutive complete games in another doubleheader sweep over Delta College on Sunday. 

The softball team also had a strong pitching performance, but lost a heartbreaker in the final inning of the game.

GRCC’s golf also competed, finishing in 10th place at the Heritage Hill Collegiate in Kentucky.

Lucas McKinney and Colton Leatherman pitched complete games for the Raiders baseball team, helping the team to a 13-2 victory in the opener and 9-0 win in the nightcap.  It was the fourth straight game where the bullpen wasn’t needed, with Jerad Berkenpas and Connor Foley pitching complete games on Friday.

Eight GRCC players had at least one hit in the doubleheader, led by Zacarias Salinas, who was 5-for-6 with three RBI, including his second home run of the season. Jake Gumieny was 4-for-6 with a triple and Andres Rivera-Calderon hit his first home run.

The baseball team is now 8-9 overall and 4-0 in the conference, after starting the season 2-8 in a tough spring break down south.

In the softball game, Izzy Regner hit her third homer of the season to tie the game at one in the first inning. But Delta took the lead back in the third. 

The visitors held the 2-1 lead until Brynn McArthur hit her second homer in as many games to give GRCC a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the sixth. The Raiders would tack on another run heading into the seventh inning.  But Delta responded with three runs – only one of which that was earned – to give it a 5-4 lead heading into the bottom of the seventh.

Despite loading the bases, GRCC was unable to score any more runs and Delta prevailed.

Lea off hitter Jay Guichelaar had three of the team’s six total hits.  Regner had two hits and McArthur’s homer was the other. Regner had 11 strikeouts in just her second loss this season. 

The golf team resumed play in Shepherdsville, Ken. finishing in 10th place of 13 teams at the Heritage Hill Collegiate. 

Connor Oman shot a team-best 230 over three rounds, including a team-best 73 in the final round on Sunday. He tied for 25th overall.

Drew Harrington shot a 75 in round one and finished in 34th place with a score of 235 strokes.  Zach Basiaga, 247 strokes, and Brad VandenHout, 248, finished the GRCC scoring.

The baseball team is scheduled to play next at Calvin University on Tuesday at 3 p.m. and the softball team is scheduled to play at home on Tuesday at 3 against Cornerstone University’s junior varsity squad.  The golf team isn’t scheduled to play until April 7. 

This story was reported by Ben Brown.

25th Annual Salute to Women Awards on March 29: Vimeo link available

25th Annual Salute to Women logo in blue script.

The Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (ODEI) wants to invite you to the Salute to Women Awards .

The awards recognition ceremony will take place Wednesday, March 29 from Noon to 1 p.m. in Sneden 108.

The award celebrates the accomplishments of women and gender equity advocates who impact the GRCC community, and is open to all GRCC stakeholders regardless of gender or gender identity.

RSVP at https://tinyurl.com/2023STW

Vimeo Link: Salute to Women 2023

Celebrating Women’s History Month by giving back

The Office of Diversity Equity and Inclusion is collecting donations until the end of the month for the YWCA and the Women’s Resource Center.

The YWCA accepts donations of cleaning items, hygiene items, sheets, and baby items.

The Women’s Resource Center collects lightly-used business casual clothing.

Donations can be dropped off at the ODEI office inside the Library and Learning Commons. A full list of acceptable donation items can be found on the ODEI News and Events webpage.

IT Knowledge Base survey for faculty and staff

In efforts to better serve the needs of our campus community, the GRCC Information Technology Department would like you to take a few minutes to complete this short survey regarding our online Knowledge Base system.

Your feedback will assist us in planning future improvements to the system to ensure that we are providing relevant information for you 24/7.

This survey will be available until Friday, March 31, 2023.

Please reference the Knowledge Base Website while answering questions.

Click on the link to access the survey: GRCC IT Knowledge Base Faculty/Staff Survey

Posting on GRCC and Community boards

Have a poster you want put up to advertise a GRCC event? You can use the GRCC posting boards located on campus.

Have something you would like to share with the campus community not directly related to GRCC? You can use the Community posting boards located on campus.

GRCC posting boards:

  1. Please drop off 20 posters to cover the boards, if you are short of 20 we cannot put them up.
  2. Posters are put up on Thursday each week, so please plan your posters to be dropped off accordingly.
  3. Everything that goes up on the GRCC posting boards must be approved and stamped with an approval in order to go up. Posters that are not approved will be taken down.
  4. To be approved for our the GRCC posting boards, the poster MUST be affiliated with a GRCC department or a student club/organization on campus.

Community posting boards:

  1. Posters that are unaffiliated with GRCC need to go on our community boards. These are located at:
  • on the first floor of the Student center building by the elevators (2)
  • in RJF level G2 on the north end of the corridor
  • by the main entrance of GRCC Lakeshore campus

Please contact Student Life (616) 234-4160 or studentlife@grcc.edu with any questions.