Students decorate tree for museum fundraiser

Elaine Gordon, Cassie Dille and Nikki Avery, students in GRCC’s Fashion Merchandising and Interior Design program, decorated a tree for the Muskegon Art Museum’s Festival of Trees fundraiser.

The GRCC students’ tree is called The Midas Touch and here’s how it’s described: “Straight out of King Midas’ court, this tree is golden perfection. With a monochromatic color scheme of gilded ornaments, ribbon, and even the tree itself, it is a breathtaking addition to any room. The Midas Touch is a classic yet exciting design that can be enjoyed for years to come.”

The museum, 296 W. Webster Ave. in Muskegon, is hosting an opening event with live music at 5:30 p.m. November 22; tickets cost $30, with proceeds going to the museum.

The exhibit runs through December 1. For more information, click here.

GRCC In the News, 10-14-13

Change Ups: GRCC dedicates Meijer Center

Oct. 11, 2013; Grand Rapids Business Journal

Grand Rapids Community College recently unveiled its Meijer Center for Business Studies. Located on the second floor of the college’s Main Building, the center features three computer labs with double projection images and one learn lab with triple projection images and powered tables for laptop use; two break-out small group work spaces and one large collaboration suite; a boardroom for shared use and professional simulation activities; and a business center for faculty.

… GRANTS: Grand Rapids Community College announced it has received a federal Child Care Access Means Parents in School grant that will provide $99,424 each year for four years to support child-care services to low-income parents enrolled in GRCC’s Occupational Support program.

Students enjoy international flavor

Oct. 11, 2013; Grand Rapids Business Journal

Beginning Thursday, Oct. 17, two-member student teams from Grand Rapids, Barbados, Canada, Mexico and Scotland will compete in the Nations Cup, a three-day international culinary competition hosted by Grand Rapids Community Colleges Secchia Institute for Culinary Education.

State Rep. Winnie Brinks to deliver keynote address at GRCC women’s leadership summit

Oct. 12, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – State Rep. Winnie Brinks is to deliver the keynote address Monday at Grand Rapids Community Colleges Women in Leadership Summit, an event that is to touch on topics ranging from civic engagement to education.

No. 1 Express Men’s Golf Dominates NJCAA D-II National Tournament Preview

Oct. 13, 2013; ABC 13

Blaze Hogan (Big Rapids/Big Rapids, MI) led the No. 1 Owens Community College Express men’s golf team to a first place finish at the eight-team National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) D-II National Tournament Preview Tournament this weekend.

… The Express led after each round of the event as they shot a 292 the first 18, a 296 the second 18 and a 293 today. They finished with a team score of 881 for all 54 holes, while No. 5 Grand Rapids Community College’s 892 was good for second place.

Grand Awards Gala to recognize best Grand Rapids theater productions, raise money for Combined Theater Scholarship

Oct. 14, 2013; MLive

Imagine a bubbly blonde, perpetually dressed in pink, doing battle with a deep, dark dysfunctional family, and they’re all being chased by a mad, razor-wielding barber and three color-coordinated airline stewardesses.

(Article doesn’t mention GRCC, but Tom Kaechele, Marcia VanKuiken and Jean Reed Bahle are nominated for awards.)

Ferris State coach Tony Annese: Beating Grand Valley again ‘a nice selling point’ in recruiting

Oct. 14, 2013; MLive

BIG RAPIDS, MI — Ferris State coach Tony Annese saw the victory Saturday against Grand Valley State as helpful on the field, but also a windfall in recruiting.

… “Well, the other thing is, we recruit against that school,” said Annese, who has deep ties to the Grand Rapids area. He was a former successful coach at Grand Rapids Community College and Muskegon High School before that. Locally, he also coached at Jenison during his 27 years.

Jason Vander Laan does it again as Ferris State makes it two in a row against Grand Valley State

Oct. 12, 2013; MLive

BIG RAPIDS, MI – Whatever happened in Saturday’s game between Grand Valley State and Ferris State was largely going to be determined by Jason Vander Laan.

… The option worked well again against Grand Valley. When Vander Laan wasn’t running, his presence opened the run game for others, too. The Bulldogs ran for 465 yards, including 91 from Jamaal Jackson and 79 yards and two touchdowns from Korey Ringer, a former back with Grand Rapids Community College.

GRCC dedicates Meijer Center for Business Studies

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Grand Rapids Community College unveiled its Meijer Center for Business Studies during an afternoon ribbon-cutting ceremony on October 1, 2013. The space was dedicated in honor of Meijer for its continued engagement with GRCC Business students and its support of the college.

“We are pleased to be here today dedicating a space that will further allow Grand Rapids Community College to enhance Business education for its students,” said GRCC President Dr. Steven C. Ender. “Meijer has long been a champion of the college and its educational initiatives, and we are grateful for their continued support.”

Located on the second floor of the college’s Main Building, the Meijer Center for Business Studies features:

  • three new computer labs with double projection images, and one “learn lab” room with triple projection images and powered tables for laptop use.
  • two break-out, small group work spaces, and one large collaboration suite for class projects.
  • one board room for shared use and professional simulation activities.
  • a business center for faculty use.
  • hallway seating areas.

“Grand Rapids Community College has been providing educational opportunities for West Michigan residents for nearly 100 years,” said GRCC Board of Trustees Chair Bert Bleke. “The Meijer Center for Business Studies is a fantastic addition to the college’s repertoire as it prepares for the next 100 years of educational excellence.”

Dedication set for Meijer Center for Business Studies

Main_Building_Study_Area_H_09_2013_015At 2 p.m. Tuesday, representatives from GRCC and Meijer will dedicate the Meijer Center for Business Studies.  The center, located on the second floor of the college’s Main Building, features:

  • three new computer labs with double projection images, and one “learn lab” room with triple projection images and powered tables for laptop use.
  • two break-out, small group work spaces, and one large collaboration suite for class projects.
  • one board room for shared use and professional simulation activities.
  • a business center for faculty use.
  • hallway seating areas.

GRCC Students Help Pack 110,000 Meals

Fourteen GRCC students and Adjunct Instructor Rana Woodhull participated in a Feed My Starving Children Mobil Manna Pack event at Bella Vista Church in Rockford on Saturday, September 14 where they helped to pack 110,000 meals for orphanages and children in countries like Haiti and Uganda:

I had been contemplating a way to integrate a hands-on approach to teach “Marketing a Non-profit Organization”, when I discovered an opportunity to experience a non-profit with my students. Students were able to participate in Feed My Starving Children, after which we are doing reflection activities about the importance of marketing for an organization and how that organization impacts ourselves, our communities, and our world.

Students participated in this event throughout the day on Saturday. The students worked in teams packing the meals and in warehousing the packed meals. The students worked together with students from Cornerstone University, members of Bella Vista Church, and many other visitors to the pack site. The students were made aware of the fact that their two hour contribution made such a huge impact on the number of children who would live to see another day and the number of children that would receive one meal a day for the next year. In all, our students helped to pack enough meals to feed 302 children one meal a day for one year. 302 children who would have the opportunity to grow up and make a difference in their own culture. Our students were able to view a video and several photos of the children that are being helped. We were horrified by the condition of the children before receiving the meals we packed and amazed at the condition of the children after receiving the meals for several weeks and months.

Feed My Starving Children is an organization that provides healthy nutrition to impoverished children around the world. FMSC produces a Manna Pack which contains six servings of the vitamins, veggies, soy and rice (It looks somewhat like the contents of packages of Lipton Sides). Each package is hand packed by volunteers at several permanent pack sites as well as at mobile pack sites. Each Manna Pack box contains 36 packages which is 216 meals. We packed 509 boxes on Saturday!

Thank you for allowing me to be a part of the “Feed My Starving Children” volunteer opportunity at your church. I enjoyed being part of such a great group and inspiring event. It’s funny how doing something for others helps us as individuals. ~ Brad Boland, BA 270 GRCC Student

To find out more about Feed My Starving Children or to get involved go to:  To find out where this food goes go to:

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GRCC In the News, 8-12-13

Change Ups: West Michigan residents destined for U.S. sled hockey team

Aug. 9, 2013; Grand Rapids Business Journal


… Grand Rapids Community College was named a Great College to Work For by The Chronicle of Higher Education in the compensation and benefits category for its employee health and wellness program.

Grand Rapids Community College computer information systems professor Cheryl Kautz is the recipient of two 2013 Blackboard Catalyst awards for Exemplary Course Program.

GRCC student Alexi Bettig, who earned her associate degree in arts last spring, is the recipient of the Presidents Scholarship from Davenport University. Bettig qualified by receiving first place, along with teammate Corwin Tobias, in video production at the Business Professionals of America national Leadership Conference in May.

Bath Farmers’ Market flourishing

Aug. 9, 2013; The Lansing State Journal

BATH — Bath Farmers Market customers have had some pleasant surprises this season, including more vendors and more varied products.

… On Aug. 1 Grand Rapids professional cooks Bryan Newton from the J.W. Marriott and Hannah Stockwell from the Amway Grand Plaza were busy preparing a dessert that included fresh doughnut pieces covered in a blueberry-cherry compote and topped with melted goat cheese and honey. The free samples were delicious and made entirely from items on sale that day.

Newton says he hasn’t been in a McDonald’s in six or seven years and Stockwell says she was influenced by a vegan chef at the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education at Grand Rapids Community College.

Grandwich 2013: The Top 10 finalists revealed

Aug. 12, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — The Top 10 finalists in the 2013 Grandwich competition were announced Monday, Aug. 12.

(Article doesn’t mention it, but GRCC alumnus Adam Watts is a chef at Grand Rapids Brewing Co. and GRCC alumna Heather Roscoe is the sandwich artist at Express Cafe.)

Grand Rapids’ free Jazz Festival’s second outing hopes to double your pleasure

Aug. 12, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — The Grand Rapids Jazz Festival last year drew 4,000 people downtown for the inaugural free festival.

(Article doesn’t mention it, but GRCC is a sponsor.)

Kelvin Grady, area stars play in first annual basketball tourney on Calder Plaza

Aug. 10, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Kelvin Grady has put away the footballs and basketballs in his life in favor of a clipboard and a whistle.

… Aside from Grady, some of the players taking part was former Notre Dame star Tory Jackson, Grand Rapids Community College player Rachman Dillard, Grace Bible and U.S. Army player Paul Nelson and Davenport standout Dauntrell Hill.

GRCC In the News, 8-2-13

Local student receives President’s Scholarship from Davenport

Aug. 1, 2013; The Rockford Squire

For the second consecutive year, a Grand Rapids Community College business student has been awarded the full-ride President’s Scholarship from Davenport University. Alexi Bettig, a Rockford High School graduate, received an associate degree in arts from GRCC this past spring and qualified for the scholarship by receiving first place, along with teammate Corwin Tobias, in video production at the Business Professionals of America (BPA) National Leadership Conference in May. She also took fourth place in digital media production.

The Heritage Theatre Group to present “American Buffalo” by David Mamet

July 31, 2013;

Tomorrow August 1, The Heritage Theatre Group will light up the stage with practical lighting fixtures for “American Buffalo.” Come sit in the junk shop with Don, Teach, and Bobby as they plan a heist to steal a customer’s valuable coin collection.

… This premiere at GRCC’s Spectrum Theater (160 Fountain St. NE) of Mamet’s play is not your typical black box production. The audience is encouraged to sit in and around the junk shop with the characters, creating a theatre in the round feel.

College Park Plaza Construction Update

The first major project is nearing completion and all floors are now fully occupied!  What happened while folks were away?  College Park Plaza received:

  • new heating and ventilation systems — this will greatly improve temperature quality and consistency in individual offices!
  • lighting for improved light quality and energy efficiency.
  • ceilings.
  • all new network wiring, switches and wireless routers.
  • a new fire suppression system.
  • new fixtures and porcelain in restroom facilities.
  • new elevators.
  • new carpet and paint in some areas.

The improvements to this building make College Park Plaza our second LEED certified facility!

Not bad for “Plan B”!

College Park Plaza now houses:

  • The Foundation has returned to the first floor and Mezzanine area. Department Secretary – Ann Marie Birr, extension 3939.
  • The Grants Department has returned to the annex area. Department Secretary – Delicia Wilondja, extension 2122.
  • The Math Department has returned to the second floor. Department Secretary – Kimberly Musser, extension 4253.
  • The Business Department is now located on the third floor. Department Secretary – Mary Gunderson, extension 4220.
  • The English Department now occupies the fourth floor and the east side of the fifth floor. Department Secretary – Gail Brown (fourth floor), extension 4243.
  • The Dental, Radiologic Tech and Occupational Therapy Assisting Department returned to the west side of the fifth floor. Department Secretary – Brenda Spratling, extension 3765.
  • The Nursing Department returned to the sixth floor. Department Secretary – Sue Sarniak, extension 4238.
  • Health Admissions is also now located on the sixth floor. Paula Naujalis, extension 4348.


GRCC In the News, 7-15-13

Restaurant Week 2013 reveals specialized menu items for 3-course meals

July 15, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Grand Rapids Restaurant Week, Aug. 14-24, will include more than 65 restaurants 16 for the first time. Special menu items from each of the participating restaurants were released this morning. See the complete list at

… A dollar from each Restaurant Week meal sold during the event will be donated by the restaurants to a student scholarship fund at Secchia Institute for Culinary Education. Since 2010, Restaurant Week Grand Rapids has donated nearly $60,000 to the scholarships.

Beach Bites offers snacks – and education

July 14, 2013; The Herald-Palladium (Benton Harbor, Mich.)

BENTON HARBOR – Beach goers at Jean Klock Park in Benton Harbor can now buy hot dogs, hamburgers and other snacks at Beach Bites, opened July 1 by Kinexus in Benton Harbor.

… He’s (Ontaygo Johnson) already earned his associate’s degree in business administration from Grand Rapids Community College.

District 9 Big League Softball team has longer road to World Series

July 14, 2013; MLive

For the past several years, Michigan District 9 has had an easier road to reach a World Series because Pinery Park played host to the Central Region Big League baseball and softball tournaments.

… In addition to Murphey, the roster consists of Danielle Freeman (Hudsonville), Morgan Groom (Lowell), Autumn Anderson, Sam Merren, Sierra Mutschler and Mallory Teunissen (Wayland), Brittany McClain (Hopkins), Nikoma Holmen and Schyler Selander (Grandville), Jazmine Hamm and Hailey Houck (Byron Center), Teagan Shomin (Northview), Jessi Ramos (Rockford), Megan Lee (Byron Center/GRCC), Chelsea Zylstra (South Christian/GRCC), and Evie Lorimer (Spring Lake/Central Michigan).

Composting at GRCC

July 12, 2013; West Michigan Sustainable Business Forum

GRCC In the News, 7-12-13

Students take part in summer IChallengeU career development program to enhance business skills

July 11, 2013; The Holland Sentinel

Holland — Katy Cumberland never really knew what it would be like to meet a business executive. She had her ideas from movies and TV shows like “Celebrity Apprentice,” but those depictions, she said, always seemed a little far-fetched.

… The idea of the two-week program, West Ottawa High School teacher Bre Bartels said, is to create an intensive learning experience in which students solve real-world issues and gain experience working in a team environment. The students also acquire four credits from Grand Rapids Community College in the business innovations course.

GRCC In the News, 6-4-13

Pedro Soto goes from troubled teen to Junior Olympics boxing champion

May 31, 2013;The Holland Sentinel

Holland — Pedro Soto of Holland has gone from a troublemaker to a championship-caliber teen boxer in a year.

… Soto has been training recently at the Misfit MMA/Boxing Center, 16 East 19th St., with Rich Miller and Frank Cisneros.

(Frank Cisneros is majoring in Business at GRCC.)

Agren, Norman named top Vikings

June 4, 2013;

CADILLAC — Success in athletics and in the classroom has earned a pair of recent Cadillac High School graduates a special honor.

… (Katlyn) Agren will attend Grand Rapids Community College in the fall and compete on the volleyball team.


GRCC In the News, 5-31-13

Two Middleville men die in head-on crash / 5-30-13

May 30, 2013; The Hastings Banner

Thornapple Kellogg students and Middleville residents gathered Monday night at TK’s Bob White stadium to remember two 2008 TKHS graduates killed in a traffic accident Saturday night.

Ryan Boyd, 23, and Matthew Dundas, 24, both of Middleville, were killed in the crash on M-37 south of 100th Street in southern Kent County at about 6:20 p.m.

… Boyd was employed as a welder at Bradford White in Middleville. Dundas attended Grand Rapids Community College and Grand Valley State University where he was studying exercise science. He was working an internship at Bradford White as a lab technician.

GRCC Older Learner Center team takes top prize in Senior Odyssey of the Mind competition

May 30, 2013; MLive

Kids from kindergarten through college met at Michigan State for the Odyssey of the Mind world finals last week and with them celebrating victory were students at Grand Rapids Community College’s Older Learner Center.

GRCC students took top honors in national competition

May 30, 2013; The Holland Sentinel

Grand Rapids — Grand Rapids Community College students received top honors at the 2013 Business Professionals of America National Leadership Conference, May 8-12 in Orlando, Fla.

GRPS, Consumers Energy and ArtPrize announce student art competition

May 30, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Close to two dozen Grand Rapids Public Schools students put their creative skills to the test recently in an effort to have their art projects recognized at ArtPrize this fall.

… The entries — all of which focus on themes related to sustainable energy — will be judged by officials from Kendall College of Art and Design, Grand Rapids Community College and Grand Valley State University. The top winner is to receive a $1,000 scholarship, and have his or her work displayed on the wall of the Consumer’s electric substation at Fulton Street and Monroe Avenue.

Fab Five: The lowdown on local entertainment

May 31, 2013; The Holland Sentinel

Chef Series at Farmers Market

This Saturday, Chef Micky Johnson from Salt & Pepper Grill and Pub will share his tips for planning the perfect picnic menu as part of the weekly Holland Farmers Market Chef Series. Beginning at 10 a.m., Johnson will share his ideas for making an unforgettable four-course picnic meal using fresh produce and other ingredients from the market.

Johnson’s career as a chef began when he was just 16 years old and working at the Queen’s Inn Restaurant. He soon realized that he had a passion for food and the hospitality industry and went on to pursue a hospitality degree from Grand Rapids Community College for Culinary Arts, along with a business degree from Davenport University. Johnson has cooked at a number of popular West Michigan restaurants including Chaps, Everyday People Cafe and Phil’s Bar and Grille. Johnson held his first head chef position at Till Midnight. He believes that food should be simple and that letting the true flavors shine through the dish should please the guests you are serving.

Rockford 4-Hers raise money for nationwide disaster victims

May 31, 2013; Michigan State University Extension

As another disaster strikes the nation, two 4-Hers model the 4-HMichigan 4-H’ers pledge by lending their hands to larger service for not just their community and state but nationwide.

… DeGelder will begin her senior year at Rockford High School this fall. (Dylan) Rodriguez attends Grand Rapids Community College. Both 4-Hers intend to attend Michigan State University to study animal science through the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Grand Rapids Creston two-sport star saved the ‘best for last’

May 29, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — As Grand Rapids Creston High School closes its doors at the end of the school year, Mallory Robinson, one of its finest tennis players and an outstanding student, earned high praise from her coach.

… Robinson was accepted to the University of Michigan, but she has decided to attend Grand Rapids Community College, where she hopes to play both sports and transfer to Cornell University to study neuropsychology and behavioral neuroscience.


GRCC In the News, 5-30-13

Obituaries today: Funeral services Friday for Matthew Dundas, 24, and Ryan Boyd, 23

May 29, 2013; MLive

Matthew Ryan Dundas, 24, liked athletics and being physically fit, and he was studying exercise science at Grand Valley State University.

Ryan M. Boyd, 23, was a welder and Steeler fan, who was known for his laughter and being silly.

The two Middleville men died Saturday, May 25, 2013, in a car accident on M-37.

… Dundas was a Thornapple Kellogg High School graduate who attended GRCC and GVSU. At 14, he worked at the Caledonia Sportsman Club, pulling clays. He was working as a lab technician in an internship at Bradford White. He is remembered as a great kid.

GRCC students take home honors at national business competition

May 29, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – More than a dozen Grand Rapids Community College students took home awards earlier this month after competing in a national student business competition.

Festival of the Arts’ Regional Art Exhibition opens Friday in Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts

May 29, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Festival of Arts Regional Art Exhibition opens Friday, one week ahead of Festival of the Arts 2013, in Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, the show’s fourth home in four years.

… A total of 574 pieces were submitted for the 2013 exhibition, selected by Larry Blovits, Adam DeKracker and Scott Garrard.

Blovits, a professor of art at Aquinas College, was the juror for painting and drawing; DeKracker, an associate professor of photography at Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University, selected work from photography submissions; and Garrard, an assistant professor of ceramics, sculpture and 3D design at Grand Rapids Community College, judged all three-dimensional and multimedia works.

Saugatuck High School honors 13 Senior Scholars

May 29, 2013; The Commercial Record (Allegan County)

Saugatuck High School honored 13 Senior Scholars during its Class of 2013 commencement ceremonies Thursday, May 23.

…(Makiah) Eveland plans to study culinary education at Grand Rapids Community College. She is interested in a degree in Vegan nutrition. Eveland was a member of the National Honor Society, student council, and was captain of the softball team, where she earned all-district and -conference honors. She earned an academic excellence Award and all A’s. Eveland volunteered at Douglas Elementary School teaching students nutrition and helping with a softball clinic.

Madison run-rules Scottsdale 10-2

May 29, 2013; (Oklahoma)

ENID, Okla. — The Fighting Artichokes fight is over.

… Scottsdale (39-21) ends its fourth trip to the final bracket with a win against Grand Rapids and losses to LSU-Eunice and Madison.