Second Annual “Fall in Love With STEM” Outreach Event a Success

On Saturday, February 10th, GRCC hosted the second annual “Fall in Love with STEM” event, and 40 middle-school aged students attended over the course of the afternoon. This free event is part of a series of events co-organized by the Association of Women in Science West Michigan Chapter; Grand Valley and Hope College each lead their own events this month. Assistant Professor Lauren Woolsey from the Physical Science Department led the organizational effort for the event.

The GRCC site had an “Exploration Station” format that sets it apart from the other events in the series. Faculty and students from GRCC as well as members of Van Andel Institute and Michigan State organized activities that spanned across the STEM disciplines: science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

This event would not have been possible without the assistance of members of the Van Andel Institute, who were essential to running the logistics side of things during the event, including event registration, the Ask-A-Scientist station, and key assistance throughout the day at the stations that needed them most. Thank you to Patty Farrell-Cole, Kelly Foy, Chelsea Newton, Erica Siebrasse, and Nicole Vander Schaaf for your time and energy!

In the Physical Sciences Department, Lauren Woolsey led a station on the sizes and scales of the solar system; Tari Mattox designed a station on paleontology and fossil identification, and Sean McKillop co-led a station on engineering and robotics with MSU professor Alison Bernstein.

This was an interdepartmental effort, and from the mathematics department, GRCC Honors student Rachel Walker ran the Mathematical Magic and Mysteries station. Professor Leigh Kleinert in the Biological Sciences department organized a station called “Who Stole the iPod?” that was run primarily by the following GRCC students in the service learning program: Kate Gyurnek, Jaubre Quinones, Jasmine Wright, Lejla Husic, Nicole Sowa, Rogelio Linares, and Adriyanna Jones. Everyone involved in this successful day of science are already looking forward to next year’s event!

GRCC In the News, 6-3-13

Spending on Grand Rapids streets makes no sense without more state funding, city manager says

June 1, 2013; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — To conclude a weeklong series of Grand Rapids city budget reports, MLive had a live chat Friday, May 31, with City Manager Greg Sundstrom. Below are excerpts of three exchanges Sundstrom had with MLive readers and reporters.

… Dave Murray: Grand Rapids Community College President Steven Ender said he was embarrassed by the condition of the park the college uses for softball games. Are you embarrassed by some of the parks?

Greg Sundstrom: Yes. Over the past three years, the City refocused its transformation on core services like Police and Fire. Now it’s time to focus on important, quality of life services like Parks.

STEM conference to be held at GVSU

June 3, 2013; WZZM

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) – There’s a national conference starting Monday focusing on the science, technology, engineering and math industries.

… Over the winter, more than 200 girls filled Grand Rapids Community College for the STEM Girl Genius Conference. The students were encouraged to consider a career in science, technology, engineering and math by getting them excited about those industries though hands-on activities.

Academic Service Learning students create Science Club for middle schoolers

Tom Neils and Academic Service Learning students from the Organic Chemistry I lab have been working with several science faculty from Grand Valley State University to create and operate a Science Club at City Middle School as part of STEM community outreach efforts.

The afterschool club meets Wednesday afternoons at the middle school to work on projects based in biology, geology, chemistry and physics. About 30 middle school students participate and have carried out experiments and activities such as “Fruity DNA,” “Lighting Blast” and “CSI Crime Scene Investigations.”

GRCC In the News, 12-5-12

Getting girls into math and science

December 4, 2012; WOTV 4

Science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). These are all career fields that need more women! That is why Fifth Third Bank participated in a recent STEM event at Grand Rapids Community College, to educate young girls on the many career choices out there.

Heavy on heritage, reborn Grand Rapids Brewing Co. opens this week as Heartside standout

December 3, 2012; MLive

This feature on the new Grand Rapids Brewing Company mentions its executive chef: Adam Watts, a  Secchia Institute of Culinary Arts graduate.

GRCC Hosts University of Michigan STEM Summer Camp for Primary School Students (Photos)

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Last week, GRCC was the site of a STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) Summer Camp organized by the University of Michigan.  The preparatory program was designed to get students ready for the challenging college programs in those career fields.  GRCC Interim Associate Dean / Chemistry Professor William Faber was the liaison who helped the camp take shape and was involved in judging the presentations made by the students on the final day.

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Students in the camp learned about everything from solar energy to the science behind music engineering.

For more information on the partnership, go here.

GRCC STEM Conference – Photos/Video

GRCC STEM Conference

On Saturday, November 5, GRCC hosted 170 young ladies in grades 5-8 for an inaugural STEM Conference. The students were invited to explore the STEM fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics through a set of hands on competitive activities requiring the use of hypothesis, testing, logic, cause and effect and experimentation. The event was a partnership activity with Grand Rapids Community College, West Catholic High School, Catholic Central High School, Kettering University, The Catholic Secondary Foundation for Education, 5/3 Bank and The American Association of University Women.

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Dr. Jennifer Batten (Physical Sciences) and Steve Abid (Social Sciences) helped plan, organize and facilitate the activities. The welcome was given by Provost, Dr. Gilda Gely. The girls were hosted at lunch by several GRCC faculty, staff and leaders including: Gilda Gely, Laurie Chesley, Sandy Andrews, Linda Bramble, Anesa Behrem, Lisa Gloege, Leigh Kleinert, Pam Scott and Leah Van Hartesveldt. Special thanks to Chef Aaron Chew, Becky Yoder, Debbie DeWent, Amy Kirkbride, GVSU WISE (Women In Science & Engineering) for mentoring, and Follett Bookstore for their help and support with door prizes. We extend our appreciation to Provost Gely and Dean Chesley for underwriting the cost of parking. Over 200 girls had to be turned away, so plans are underway for next year to allow for an even larger audience.

Courtesy of the Media Technologies Department, these two videos of presentations at the conference are available:

Tracey Hornbeck, Chief Financial Officer at 5/3 Bank explains how and why she became the CFO at 5/3 Bank.

Mary Gilliam, Assistant Professor at Kettering University explains why and how she became a chemical engineer.