GRCC In the News, 1-26-15

Same-sex benefits: Grand Rapids Community College considers adding coverage

Jan. 24, 2015; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – When John Cowles first came to Grand Rapids Community College in 1999, he was glad to learn there was an equal employment policy in place aimed at ensuring students and employees were treated equally, regardless of sexual orientation.

Local seamstress teams up with GRCC to offer affordable industrial sewing classes in effort to meet industry demand

Jan. 25, 2015; MLive

The industrial sewing machine before her is whirring and in roughly a minute Marisbel Ramos zips around the edge of the fabric, completing the piece that will soon be fitted over the arm of a chair and shipped out the door of Irwin Seating Company.

… A short time later, Metzger connected with Grand Rapids Community College’s Workforce Training program through a contact at Steepletown Neighborhood Services. GRCC administrators were responding to a need identified by local economic development agencies and employers requesting an industrial sewing training program and they needed a sewing instructor.

GRCC conmemora con marcha y actividades el día de Martin Luther King

Jan. 25, 2015; El Vocero

La actividad estuvo encabezada por el Board of Trustees de Grand Rapids Community College, Bert Bleke, y el director de Grand Rapids Community College Black Student Union, Jaedah Pickens.

Aquinas track & field sweeps quad meet

Jan. 23, 2015; MLive

Grand Rapids, MI — Both the men’s and women’s track and field teams won tonight at the Aquinas Quad Meet held at the Cook Track in Aquinas’ Alksnis Athletic and Recreation Building. The Saints hosted Hope, Ferris State and Spring Arbor. The men scored 184 points, topping second place Spring Arbor’s 109, while the women scored 194 to top Spring Arbor’s 116.

… The women’s team claimed 12 first place finishes. Freshman Rachel Spreng (Lansing/Okemos) won the pole vault and hit the NAIA “B” standard with a vault of 3.48 meters. Fellow freshman Adri Sigafoose (McBain/Northern Michigan Christian) claimed the top spot in the 800 meter run with a time of 2:18.65. Sigafoose’s time qualifies her at the NAIA “A” standard. Two Aquinas hurdlers hit the NAIA “A” standard, with Tori DeSira (Dewitt/GRCC) and Erika Heston (Haslett/Haslett) finishing in first and second place. DeSira also won the 200 meter dash.

GRCC In the News, 1-12-15

GRCC president says Obama’s free community college proposal a ‘great thing for this country’

Jan. 10, 2015; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Grand Rapids Community College President Steven Ender said a proposal that would make the nation’s two-year colleges tuition free would be “a great thing for this country,” and would help build the educated and skilled workforce West Michigan needs to thrive.

GRCC’s new head of workforce development: Our primary focus is let’s get you into work

Jan. 9, 2015; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – The new head of Grand Rapids Community College’s School of Workforce Development says he wants to forge relationships with businesses and provide the relevant training students and displaced workers need to land a good paying job.

Change Ups: Dickinson recognized for improving naval leadership

Dec. 26, 2014; Grand Rapids Business Journal

… EDUCATION

… Grand Rapids Community College announced a third of the 80 students graduating in December from its Job Training program have secured employment.

… GRANTS

Aquinas College, Grand Rapids Community College and Grand Valley State University announced they will share a $65,000 grant from Grand Rapids Community Foundation to create and support a two-year Engaged Departments Initiative.

Change Ups: ECCU raises money to benefit Wounded Warriors

Jan. 2, 2015; Grand Rapids Business Journal

… EDUCATION

Grand Rapids Community College, with funding help from JP Morgan Chase & Co., now offers an industrial sewing course that costs students $35. The classes are in response to increased workforce demands. Steepletown Neighborhood Services and Blue Marble Threads provided machines and helped develop the curriculum.

Grand Rapids could drop elective classes required for alternative education students to graduate

Jan. 8, 2015; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Grand Rapids Public Schools is reviewing a plan to drop electives from the required course load for alternative education students to keep them in the district and expedite graduation.

… GRPS has a total of 186 alternative students, according to the most recent numbers, in four programs: Grand Rapids Learning Center@Grand Rapids Community College, Southeast Career Pathways, Bethany Christian Services and Kent County Correctional Facility. School leaders say alternative students have been leaving to go to other programs such as in Godfrey-Lee Public Schools, where they are not saddled with electives.

Snow, ice lead to crashes around Michigan; many schools shut

Jan. 9, 2015; Oakland Press

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (AP) — Snow and ice-covered roads are blamed for numerous crashes around Michigan and many schools across the state are closed.

… Grand Valley State University and Grand Rapids Community College also closed.

Inside Track: Webster whips up ingredients for successful business

Jan. 9, 2015; Grand Rapids Business Journal

Business owner, foster mom and baker extraordinaire Katie Webster adds a sweet creative flair to the Holland community.

Webster’s passion for the culinary arts began at a young age, and after attending Grand Rapids Community College’s culinary school, she discovered she didn’t want to hide in the kitchen. For Webster, owner of Second Floor Bakery in Holland, it is the pairing of food and the emotions that food brings out in people that are important.

Behind the Kitchen Door…with Bar Divani Executive Chef Baird

Dec. 28, 2014; MLive

Inspired to pursue the culinary arts by Jack Tripper from the late 1970s, early 1980s TV show “Three’s Company,” Jeff Baird began his training in high school before completing the culinary arts program at Grand Rapids Community College. His favorite restaurant is Fricano’s, which should come as no surprise since he is a Grand Haven native. When he’s not maintaining a “positive attitude” in the kitchen as the executive chef at Bar Divani, Baird is blowing off steam playing guitar with punk band The Bitters. This chef is “hardcore” when it comes to food and music.

Rockford welcomes new police officers

Jan. 5, 2015; MLive

The city of Rockford is beginning 2015 with four new additions to its Police Department.

… William Burnett and Braden Myers were hired after graduating from the Police Academy program at Grand Rapids Community College earlier last year. Tyler Glass graduated from the police program at Ferris State University and was hired in August, Jones said.

The curious story of Jenison’s Gus Penning, whose football dream led to a spot on Baylor’s team

Jan. 1, 2015; MLive

DALLAS — Baylor tight end Gus Penning has the sort of story that will get every current or recently finished high school football player’s heart beating faster.

… So Penning, whose only camp exposure was at Purdue one summer, decided to play football at Grand Rapids Community College in 2011 and redshirted that first season with the program.

Area high school grads making an impact on college sports scene

Jan. 11, 2015; MLive

The fall season has come to an end and the winter season is well underway for local college athletes. Following is a look at some area high school graduates who have been making news both in the fall and winter seasons on the collegiate level.

… A pair of former Rockford basketball players are playing key roles for the Grand Rapids Community College women’s basketball team. Sophomore forward Sara Karamol is averaging a double-double for the Raiders with 12 points and 10.6 rebounds per game. Karamol is also shooting 50.8% from the field and adding 3.6 assists per game. Karamol scored a season-high 15 points in two different games this season and also pulled down 17 rebounds in two other games. Sophomore point guard Andrea Straw leads the Raiders in assists with 5.7 per game and is adding 1.1 steals. Straw is averaging 10.9 points per game, is shooting 48.5% from the field, and is averaging 4 rebounds per game.

… The Grand Rapids Community College men’s basketball team is getting a strong effort from freshman forward Kevin Brower. Brower is averaging 9.3 points per game, along with 9 rebounds and 1.5 assists. Brower is shooting 46.3% from the field.

College notes: Emily Spencer caps volleyball career with second Player of Year award at IPFW

Dec. 25, 2014; MLive

… DeMarkus Stuckey, Grand Rapids Community College: Stuckey, a sophomore guard, has been on fire this season. He score 24 points in a win over Schoolcraft CC on Dec. 17 and is averaging 23.4 points per game. Stuckey (GR Catholic Central) had a season-high 39 points on 17-of-32 shooting against Alma College JV on Nov. 24.

… Andrea Straw, Grand Rapids Community College: Straw had a season-high 28 points and 11 assists in an 86-78 loss to Davenport JV on Dec. 10. Straw (Rockford) is averaging 10.9 points and 5.7 assists for the Raiders.

Grand Valley State volleyball player heads to Rose Parade after penning essay about losing starting job

Dec. 26, 2014; MLive

ALLENDALE, MI — The disappointment Grand Valley State’s Clair Ruhenkamp felt after she lost her starting job on the Lakers volleyball team has ultimately turned into a positive for her this holiday season.

… But in her junior season, Kaitlyn Wolters, a transfer from Grand Rapids Community College, came in and eventually won the starting job. It’s the routine competition of sports, but it was a new challenge for Ruhenkamp.

Information sessions on health-care programs scheduled for January

You can learn about GRCC’s health-care programs and get your questions answered at information sessions in January at Tassell M-TEC.

Health certification programs that will be covered in this information session are:

All information sessions are free, and you are under no obligation to enroll in a course when you attend these sessions.

The information sessions are scheduled for:

  • 9 a.m. January 5.
  • 6 p.m. January 7.
  • 9 a.m. January 10.
  • 9 a.m. January 12.
  • 1 p.m. January 15.
  • 9 a.m. January 19.
  • 6 p.m. January 21.
  • 9 a.m. January 26.

To register, click here.

GRCC In the News, 12-22-14

State’s focus on workforce development plays to GRCC’s strengths, president says

Dec. 21, 2014; mibiz.com

As companies across the country and in West Michigan pay close attention to talent issues, they’ve largely looked to community colleges as the go-to source for skilled workers. However, attracting students to technical training programs and sourcing funding for those programs continue to be issues for those schools. During his tenure, Grand Rapids Community College President Steven Ender has worked to grow the college’s programs and curriculum to meet the needs of employers in West Michigan. He spoke with MiBiz about the role community colleges will play in training workers in the coming year.

Change Ups: Volunteer inspires Dégagé patrons

Dec. 19, 2014; Grand Rapids Business Journal

… EDUCATION

… Grand Rapids Community College announced Laurie Chesley will step into the role of provost. She was formerly dean of GRCC’s School of Arts and Sciences. GRCC’s provost-executive vice president for academic and student affairs reports directly to the president and serves as the chief academic officer, with major responsibilities for strategic planning and guiding all aspects of teaching and learning.
Veteran coach David Selmon is interim head coach of Grand Rapids Community College’s men’s basketball team following the departure of T.J. Carnegie, who accepted an out-of-state job opportunity.

Construction Workforce Development Alliance key to developing skilled trades talent, Wickstrom says

Dec. 21, 2014; mibiz.com

As the president of Ada-based Erhardt Construction Co., Ben Wickstrom wants to attract people not only to his firm, but also to the larger construction industry. Wickstrom was one the founding members of the Construction Workforce Development Alliance (CWDA), a group consisting of three local trade associations. He spoke with MiBiz about how the group aims to create a pipeline of workers.

… “We formed this partnership to address the common, shared focus of attracting new people to the construction industry and developing and maintaining a training system to train people currently in the industry and the new people coming in. We formed a partnership with Grand Rapids Community College. They are a supporting member of the CWDA. Michigan Works! is a also a supporting member of the CWDA.”

MSU fan Gus Penning goes from Grand Rapids CC to Baylor TE

Dec. 20, 2014; The Detroit Free Press

Gus Penning contributed to the roar that swept through Spartan Stadium late on the night of Oct. 22, 2011, after Michigan State receiver Keith Nichol grabbed a Hail Mary pass from Kirk Cousins and muscled past the goal line to beat Wisconsin at the buzzer.

… He was a freshman tight end at Grand Rapids Community College at the time, unrecruited out of Jenison High but determined to make a player out of himself. On Jan. 1 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, he’ll line up for No. 4 Baylor (11-1) against his former favorite football program, and he’ll try to help the Bears beat the No. 7 Spartans (10-2) in the Cotton Bowl.

Job Training faculty, M-TEC staff treat students to breakfast

The Job Training faculty and M-TEC staff celebrated our students by cooking breakfast for them Thursday morning. Faculty and staff purchased the supplies, cooked and served the food. Students were very appreciative and loved the great start to the day! A special thank you to the M-TEC Communications/Teamwork committee for organizing this event!

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GRCC In the News, 12-10-14

New GRCC board member takes oath of office

Dec. 9, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Grand Rapids Community College has a new board member.

The DanceOff raises $4,500 for Well House, crowns Breah Simpson champion

Dec. 9, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Hundreds of dance fans watched Grand Rapids native Breah Simpson, 21, become the first champion of The DanceOff, a local dance competition held on Saturday, Dec. 6 ,at The Pyramid Scheme.

“My heart dropped when they called my name,” said Simpson, who recently received certification as a personal trainer from Grand Rapids Community College. “Dance is my way of communicating. My dream job is to work at a studio.”

Frontiers: Meeting Student Needs Through Online Programming

Dec. 10, 2014; schoolnewsnetwork.org

Wyoming Public Schools, MI — When her mother died last summer, Wyoming Senior Tashia Sheneman lost a permanent place to live and has since moved several times. One of the few constants in her life is Wyoming’s Frontiers Program, where she receives much more than instruction.

… “I’m good. I’m doing better than I was out there,” said Tashia, referring to the traditional high school program. “I feel like you have more support … and it’s more on your time and it prepares you for college,” she added, sharing plans to attend Grand Rapids Community College before attending Ferris State University to pursue her career goal of becoming a probation officer.

 

Information session for health-care programs set for December 12

You can learn about GRCC’s health-care programs and get your questions answered at information session at noon December 12 and 4 p.m. January 12 at Tassell M-TEC.

Health certification programs that will be covered in this information session are:

All information sessions are free, and you are under no obligation to enroll in a course when you attend these sessions. To register, click here.

Construction Trades courses start in January

Plan now for GRCC’s Construction Trades courses!

The following classes have been scheduled:

  • Core Construction will run 5:30-8:30 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays from January 12 to April 29.
  • Carpentry Certification Program 2  will run 5:30-8:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays from January 13 to May 7.
  • Concrete Workers Certification Program 1 will run 5:30-8:30 p.m. Mondays and Wednesdays from January 5 to March 30.

For details, click here.

GRCC In the News, 10-27-14

Students pay it forward in Kalamazoo with Cougars Creating Community event

Oct. 24, 2014; MLive

KALAMAZOO, MI — Early Friday morning, students from Kalamazoo Valley Community College, Grand Rapids Community College, Western Michigan University and the Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine fanned out across the Kalamazoo area with the sole purpose of paying it forward.

Inside Track: Troy Yarbrough is happiest when he’s building something

Oct. 24, 2014; Grand Rapids Business Journal

Growing up, Troy Yarbrough discovered he had a knack for grasping the intricacies of science and mathematics.

… He enrolled at Union High School but then dropped out, eventually earning his high school diploma in 1984 through the alternative high school program offered at Grand Rapids Community College.

… He first worked as a finish carpenter starting in 1991, becoming a licensed builder in Michigan that same year and enrolling in Grand Rapids Community College with an emphasis on its carpentry program. His fondness for swinging a hammer hasn’t dampened through the years.

Tony Kimbrough at home and having fun leading the East Kentwood gridders

Oct. 26, 2014; MLive

EAST KENTWOOD — An outstanding quarterback during his playing days, East Kentwood head football coach Tony Kimbrough always had coaching in his blood.

… From Creston, Kimbrough went on to coach at both Western Michigan University and Grand Rapids Community College, before eventually arriving at East Kentwood.

Update your skills with Advanced Manufacturing Series courses

GRCC’s Advanced Manufacturing Series is an introduction or update for those in manufacturing or interested in manufacturing. You may take one workshop or a combination of workshops.

Upcoming courses include:

  • Lean Manufacturing Overview (CORE).
  • Blueprint Reading for Manufacturing 1 (CORE).
  • Basic Metrology and Measurement System Error (CORE).
  • Problem Solving – 8 Steps and 5 Whys Overview (CORE).
  • Manufacturing Terminology, Processes, and Practices (elective).
  • Blueprint Reading for Manufacturing 2 (elective).
  • Working Better in Teams (elective).
  • Sustainability – Greening the Workplace (elective).
  • Quality Products and Quality Management Systems (elective).
  • Statistical Process Control – SPC 1 (elective).
  • Statistical Process Control – SPC 2 (elective).

For details or to register, click here.

 

GRCC In the News, 10-14-14

Man gets probation and suspended jail term for crash that killed Grandville High student, cousin

Oct. 13, 2014; MLive

MECOSTA COUNTY, MI — The driver in a crash that killed two cousins – a Grandville High School student and a Coopersville man – was sentenced to two years probation and a suspended jail term.

… Two passengers in his vehicle, Michael Aguilar, 22, of Coopersville, and Roman Aguilar-Emmons, 18, of Wyoming, were killed in the May 3 crash. Fuentes-Perdomo was seriously injured. The driver of the pickup truck, a 31-year-old Cedar Springs man, suffered injuries that were not life-threatening.

(This article does not mention it, but Roman Aguilar-Emmons had enrolled in GRCC’s Police Academy.)

Trayvon Martin’s mom to speak at West Michigan colleges to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy

Oct. 13, 2014; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Sybrina Fulton, the mother of Trayvon Martin – whose fatal shooting in 2012 sparked a nationwide debate and protests over racial profiling – will speak in January at programs celebrating the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. at Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids Community College and Davenport University.

Ask the Community College Presidents

Oct. 9, 2014; WGVU

(Video features President Ender, Robert Ferrentino of Montcalm Community College, and Dale Nesbary of Muskegon Community College.)

Changing lives, one ramp at a time

Oct. 13, 2014; WOOD 8

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich (WOOD) — Recently, a group of students from GRCC’s Tassell M-TEC Construction Trades teamed up with the pros at Home Repair Services to work on a very special project. Every year Home Repair Services teams up with the Grand Rapids Home Builders Association for Community Repair Days. They help to build wheelchair ramps for disabled and low income. For the students, it was a great chance to get out of the classroom and see what happens on a construction site. Home Repair Services tries to build 15 wheelchair ramps a year.

18th Annual GRAND RAPIDS GRAND AWARDS Are Announced

Oct. 14, 2014; broadwayworld.com

For performers and audiences alike, the name on everyone’s tongue this week is “The Grand Awards!”

… Community theatres presently participating in the Grand Awards are Grand Rapids Civic Theatre, Jewish Theatre, Actors’ Theatre, Circle Theatre, and Master Arts Theatre. Participating colleges include Grand Rapids Community College, Aquinas College, and Cornerstone University.

Meet the teacher: Kentwood Public Schools welcome 37 new teachers

Oct. 13, 2014; MLive

KENTWOOD, MI — With a little over a month at a new school under their belts, MLive and The Grand Rapids Press asked area school districts to share information about new staff members.

… Stacey Stankewicz, resource room teacher at Explorer Elementary School. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Aquinas College and a Master of Arts degree in special education from Ottawa University. Previously, she taught in London, England, and Grand Rapids Community College.

GR officials see development as next stop for bus rapid transit

Oct. 13, 2014; Crain’s Detroit Business

The first exploration of bus rapid transit in the Grand Rapids area is already halfway to its goal of 5,000 riders a day most weekdays. And although nothing is shovel-ready yet, city officials think developers are starting to get interested in investing along the corridor of the new bus line.

… “We are hearing that we have a lot of Grand Rapids Community College students and a lot of people who are working on Medical Mile, especially Spectrum Health employees,” (Jennifer) Kalczuk said.