GRCC In the News, 5-24-17

Man lured to robbery: ‘He wanted to shoot me’

May 23, 2017; WOOD TV

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A man looking for a good deal on a computer found himself looking down the barrel of a gun in what police call robbery by appointment.

… The 25-year-old Grand Rapids Community College dean’s list student was looking for a good deal on a MacBook Pro and found one on the online app OfferUp, which is similar to Craigslist. It turned out the deal was too good to be true.

West Michigan military: See achievements by local service men and women

May 23, 2017; MLive

… Retired Army Col. Scott Haraburda, was named Grand Rapids Community College’s 2017 Distinguished Alumnus. Haraburda received an associate degree in 1981 from what was then Grand Rapids Junior College. He went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Central Michigan University, a Master of Strategic Studies from the U.S. Army War College, and master’s and doctoral degrees in chemical engineering from Michigan State University.

Academic Decision Day ‘Sends the Right Message’

May 23, 2017; (KISD newsletter)

Comstock Park Public Schools, MI — Anyone who knows high school knows about college decision day, when senior athletes make a show of signing with a college sports team.

… It was a proud day as well for Donovan Crandall, whom Bolthouse encouraged to accept a hefty financial aid package to attend Grand Rapids Community College.

Class of 2017 prepares to graduate from Holland-area schools

May 23, 2017; The Holland Sentinel

After 13 years of school or sometimes a little bit longer hundreds of Holland-area students are about to earn their high school diploma.

Descent into opioid addiction captured on video

May 23, 2017; WOOD TV

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A man’s determination to show a drug-addicted friend just how far she had fallen offers a rare and raw glimpse into the world of opioid addiction.

… She (Kelly Galbraith) now works at a private drug treatment center and attends Grand Rapids Community College.

Partners honor activists at César Chávez event

May 23, 2017; Grand Rapids Business Journal

A group of community partners have honored the legacy of civil rights activist César Chávez and recognized three change-makers.

… A number of colleges supported the event, including Aquinas College, Calvin College, Kendall College of Art and Design, Davenport University, Ferris State University, Grand Rapids Community College, Grand Valley State University and Western Michigan University Grand Rapids.

Up close: How determination kept Tri-unity Christian seniors’ dreams alive

May 23, 2017; MLive

Rayven Mondy’s season was gone in an instant when the Tri-unity Christian senior guard took a trip to the hospital last January after she injured her knee in a game on Jan. 24.

… Mondy’s future looks bright now that she has had surgery and is undergoing rehabilitation. Plus, she recently signed with Grand Rapids Community College to continue her basketball career and education. Mondy said she was drawing interest from a number of schools before the injury occurred, and she added that GRCC was the school that stuck with her through the whole ordeal.



GRCC In the News, 5-12-17

Robert Kozminski and other fallen officers of West Michigan honored in police memorial

May 11, 2017; FOX 17

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A police officer who bravely gave his life while on duty in Grand Rapids 10 years ago was honored at Richmond Park on Thursday along with several other officers who made the same sacrifice.

… That memorial was made possible thanks to several volunteers, donors and vendors. The Kozminski family also started a memorial scholarship that is awarded to a student of the Grand Rapids Community College whose career goal it is to be in law enforcement and attend the police academy.

Army Col. Scott Haraburda named 2017 GRCC Distinguished Alumnus

May 12, 2017; Spencer Evening World (Ind.)

A Spencer Army veteran, engineer and inventor is Grand Rapids Community College’s 2017 Distinguished Alumnus.

GRCC In the News, 5-8-17

Change Ups: WMU Cooley Law School associate dean inducted into alumni ROTC Hall of Fame

May 5, 2017; Grand Rapids Business Journal


Retired Col. Scott Haraburda is Grand Rapids Community College’s 2017 Distinguished Alumnus. Haraburda is a 1981 graduate from then Grand Rapids Junior College; chemistry professor Joe Hesse was named the college’s 2017 Emeritus Faculty; and president Dr. Steven C. Ender received the President Emeritus Award. Ender retired in April.

School district plans $17M renovation of high school

May 5, 2017; Grand Rapids Business Journal

A local school district is planning to renovate a high school into a “center for college preparation and career technical education.”

… In a joint venture with Grand Rapids Community College, GRPS will launch its first Early Middle College program at the renovated Ottawa Hills High School.

GRBJ: Ferris programs help Latinos hone business skills

May 8, 2017 WZZM

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. – Throughout her 10 years in educational leadership and her work in the nonprofit sector, Lorena Aguayo-Marquez has worn many hats. Now, she wants to focus on the work that truly motivates her.

That’s why Aguayo-Marquez, program assistant for adult education programs at Grand Rapids Community College, signed up for the Latino Talent Initiative, a professional development program established in 2014 by the Latino Economic and Business Development Center (LEBDC) at Ferris State University.

GRCC Athlete Jeff Drake Todd

May 5, 2017; Grand Rapids Times

Jeff Todd is one of Grand Rapids Community College’s best basketball team players with a scoring average of 21.3 points per game as the Raiders combo point guard and shooting guard. In this interview with the GR Times, he talks about how he learned that grades come first the hard way, the influence of his parents on his college career, future plans and more.

Sinclair baseball edges Cuyahoga to win conference championship

5/7/17 Dayton Daily News (Ohio)

Sinclair split a doubleheader with Cuyahoga on Sunday to clinch the Ohio Community College Athletic Conference championship.

… The Tartan Pride travel to Grand Rapids Community College for a non-conference doubleheader on Monday.

Innovation Central, Montessori students’ 2017 prom a royal night

May 5, 2017; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Students from Grand Rapids Public Schools’ Innovation Central High School and Grand Rapids Montessori joined together for a royal night at their prom Friday, May 5.

The two schools — which are on the same campus — held their prom at Grand Rapids Community College’s Raider Grille. The theme was “where the royals meet.”

GRCC In the News, 5-1-17

Graduation ceremonies this weekend for GVSU and GRCC

April 28, 2017; WZZM

GRAND RAPIDS, MICH. – Graduates across the country are closing the book on their college careers as commencement ceremonies take place.

… Friday was also the last commencement ceremony for retiring Grand Rapids Community College President Dr. Steven C. Ender.

Community partners fill need for nursing assistants

April 28, 2017; Grand Rapids Business Journal

Facing a shortage of certified nursing assistants, West Michigan health care leaders asked Grand Rapids Community College to start a CNA training program.

Change Ups: Adtegrity to relocate

April 28, 2017; Grand Rapids Business Journal


… Secchia Institute for Culinary Arts student Tammy Vander Werf received Grand Rapids Community College’s Arthur Andrews Award, which goes to the Delta Pi Alpha student with the highest cumulative GPA and the greatest number of honor points. Vander Werf will receive a culinary arts degree with an emphasis in baking and pastry arts.

In Constant Growth: ACT Apprentice Chris Overway

April 28, 2017;

“I will continue doing art and creating.”

… After the program, Chris (Overway) will be graduating and moving onto Grand Rapids Community College, where he wants to continue doing art. Ultimately Chris says he wants to sell his art and do it professionally, because it is his ultimate passion. Regardless of the circumstances, Chris will find inspiration and find a way to create.

Makenna Pronk a reliable source of goals for Zion Christian soccer team

April 28, 2017; MLive

BYRON CENTER — When the Zion Christian girls soccer team puts a goal in the back of an opponent’s net, chances are good senior Makenna Pronk has been a part of the play.

… After high school, Pronk plans to attend Grand Rapids Community College.

Jazz at GRandJazzFest This Summer Will be Fantastic and Free

April 28, 2017; 100.5 FM

It’s one of the most anticipated festivals in Grand Rapids. GRandJazzFest, August 19 and 20 is back for its sixth year at Rosa Parks Circle, in downtown Grand Rapids.

… It’s free thanks to presenting sponsor DTE Energy Foundation, the City of Grand Rapids, Gilmore Collection, GR and Jazz, IntentPR, Corporate Live, Grand Rapids Art Museum, Amway Hotel Corporation, Experience Grand Rapids, Icon Sign, Matt Huizenga Videography, Meijer, MoxieMen, Steelcase, Configura, Fancy Faces, Grand Rapids Community College, Hilger Hammond, Kitchen 67, Levens Strand & Glover, Rick and Mary Stevens, Rockford Construction, Swift Printing, and other sponsoring organizations and individuals.


GRCC In the News, 4-28-17

News 8 Daybreak

April 28, 2017; WOOD TV

It’s graduation season around West Michigan. Grand Rapids Community College is one of several schools holding commencement ceremonies over the next few days.

Case Study: Spectrum Healths Community-based Chronic-Disease Management Program

April 20, 2017; Hospitals & Health Networks (American Hospital Association publication)

Since 1997, Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids, Mich., has provided community-based care through its Healthier Communities initiative. Developed through the merger of two previous programs, Core Health was added in 2008 to provide in-home education on general wellness, including weight and stress control, for patients with early-stage chronic conditions, such as diabetes, heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.

… Once selected, CHWs undergo rigorous training in a certification program developed jointly by Spectrum Health’s Healthier Communities and the Grand Rapids Community College to provide the Michigan Community Health Worker Alliance standardized curriculum. Upon completion, the student will receive a certificate from GRCC. To become certified for the Core Health program, CHWs are tested in eight competencies, including advocacy and outreach; community and personal strategies; legal and ethical responsibilities; teaching and capacity building; communication skills and cultural competencies; coordination, documentation and reporting; healthy lifestyles; and mental health. The eight-week onboard training includes classroom work, scenario precepting, job shadowing and peer mentoring, after which CHWs understand the nature of diabetes, heart failure and COPD, as well as the resources to manage them.

Thomas Gilbert (Ottawa Hills) signs with GRCC

April 26, 2017;

Thomas Gilbert, a 6-foot-6 forward from Ottawa Hills High School, has signed to play basketball at Grand Rapids Community College next season.

Volunteer of the Year: Denise Joseph

April 25, 2017; Literacy Center of West Michigan

Spend an hour listening to Denise Joseph tell stories of teaching and volunteering and you’ll know right away why the Literacy Center is honoring her with the Marshall Pitler Volunteer of the Year Award at this years Spellebration event.

… Never one to slow down, Denise also sings with the Grand Rapids Women’s Chorus, takes Spanish classes at Grand Rapids Community College, and serves in leadership at Fountain Street Church. In addition, she serves as the adopted Grandmother of a family of Eritrean refugees who settled in Grand Rapids.

GRCC In the News, 4-26-17

Comisión Hispana reconoce a estudiantes graduados de las universidades de Michigan

April 25, 2017; La Prensa

Lansing, MI — El pasado viernes 7 de abril, la Comisión Hispánica/Latina de Michigan (HLCOM por sus siglas en inglés) realizó su primera ceremonia para reconocer a 45 graduados hispanos de las universidades de Michigan, en el Centro Lansing, ubicado en el 333 East Michigan Avenue.

Al evento asistieron alrededor de 150 personas, entre quienes se encontraban, familiares, amigos y profesores de los graduados de las diferentes universidades del estado: Michigan State University, Western Michigan University, Siena Heights University, Saginaw Valley State University, Northern Michigan University, Eastern Michigan University, Ferris State University, Grand Rapids Community College, Lake Michigan College y Lansing Community College.

(Lansing, MI: On Friday, April 7, the Michigan Hispanic / Latino Commission (HLCOM) held its first ceremony to recognize 45 Hispanic graduates from Michigan colleges at the Lansing Center in 333 East Michigan Avenue.

The event was attended by about 150 people, including family members, friends, and professors of graduates from different state universities: Michigan State University, Western Michigan University, Siena Heights University, Saginaw Valley State University, Northern Michigan University, Eastern Michigan University, Ferris State University, Grand Rapids Community College, Lake Michigan College and Lansing Community College.)


Sponsor a grad!

For the past few years, we have asked for your help in meeting a couple of goals that were put in place for commencement. We wanted to increase the number of students that participated in the commencement ceremony, and we wanted to have faculty and staff sponsor 100 graduates by providing them a cap and gown. Thanks to many of you, we achieved both of those goals and we actually had a record number of graduates process last year at commencement.

Once again, this year, we want to make sure that every graduate that wants to participate is able to.  We know that many students have told us that they are not able to participate in the commencement ceremony due to the cost of the cap and gown. As an institution committed to the success of our students, commencement is our time to celebrate the greatest success of all with our students – COMPLETION! And, I can think of no better way to celebrate the individual success of our graduates than by removing this one final financial barrier for our students – $31 to purchase their cap and gown.

Know that our students are overwhelmed when they hear that a GRCC faculty or staff member’s donation made it possible for them to participate in this important life event, an event that for many of these students, is the first such event in the history of their family!

To follow is a student quote highlighting the impact of this gift for her last year:

I would like to first say thank you all for making graduation a blessing and fun! I would not have been able to walk with pride and joy on graduation day! I was actually hit by a car the week before graduation and all of the GRCC staff made me glad I came, they never once made me feel like a burden. I was only working part-time and did not have enough money for my cap and gown. The staff at GRCC helped me out with a cap and gown and I was able to return the gown for the next person. I felt truly blessed attending GRCC. Keep on doing an awesome job! Continue to let your staff keep blessing others like me! Thank you from the heart!” Earnette Wrancher, class of 2016.

And, here is a quote from a GRCC staff member highlighting why he gave to the Sponsor a Grad program last year:

I remembered how I felt when I walked across the stage when graduating from Thames Valley State Technical College with my A.S. many moons ago and it felt natural to help ensure graduates aren’t denied the same experience for want of enough money to obtain their cap and gown.Michael Passer, IT Enterprise Director

Please help us reward our students who have reached their graduation goals and participate in the Sponsor a Grad program today.

If you are interested in helping us, I ask that you commit to our Sponsor a Grad program – through your sponsorship, you agree to purchase a cap and gown for a graduate at the cost of $31 per set.

Know that there is no limit to the number of graduates you sponsor. You can make your donation by simply going online to make your payment. Or if you prefer, and would like to make a donation using a different payment method, you are welcome to contact the Foundation Office directly at x3939.

Thank you for all you do in support of our students and their success.

Cap and gown vouchers available

Commencement celebrates the academic accomplishment of our students, and to ensure each graduate has the opportunity to participate in commencement, a cap and gown voucher is available. Through the generous donations of faculty and staff, the Sponsor-A-Grad program guarantees that each graduate who cannot afford the cost of a cap and gown, receives one.

If you know of a student who is not participating because of the cost, please contact the Student Affairs Office.  The voucher can be mailed to the student, or sent to you, if you would like to personally give it to the student.

GRCC In the News, 6-13-16

People in the Law, June 13, 2016

June 13, 2016; Michigan Lawyers Weekly

… Honors

… Dirk C. Hoffius of Varnum LLP was named Grand Rapids Community College’s 2016 Distinguished Alumnus.

How ‘Handshake’ is helping GRCC students, alumni secure jobs

June 10, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Grand Rapids Community College recently launched a new career services tool named Handshake that allows students and employers to make a direct connection.


GRCC In the News, 6-6-16

Police release ID of man, 26, who shot himself outside downtown hospital

June 5, 2016; MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Corbin Armock has been identified by Grand Rapids Police as the man who shot and killed himself Wednesday outside the Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital emergency room.

… Police found Armock’s vehicle parked nearby in a parking ramp at Grand Rapids Community College, where he worked in the bookstore. A package was inside the car but a bomb squad determined it posed no threat.

Change Ups: Mary Free Bed to offer residency program

June 3, 2016; Grand Rapids Business Journal


… Dirk Hoffius, a Varnum estate-planning attorney, has been named Grand Rapids Community College’s 2016 Distinguished Alumnus.

School liaison officers serve as role models

June 3, 2016; Ionia Sentinel-Standard

IONIA — School resource or liaison officers are in many schools throughout Michigan, and there are at least three right here, in Ionia County.

… Not only is (Mike) Cronk a police officer, he is also a firefighter and a medical first responder. While growing up, his parents were on the fire department. He didn’t know what he wanted to be when he went to college, but he went to Grand Rapids Community College and soon joined their police academy and found that’s what he wanted to do. He has been with Ionia Public Safety for 18 years, the last three have been as a resource officer.

From can to pan? More like farm to table

June 3, 2016; Grand Rapids Business Journal

As Tim England was readying to start his job as executive chef at Beacon Hill at Eastgate, he wanted to avoid the stigma of bland senior living food from the open a can and dump it in a pan method.

… “Chef Tim and his culinary team at Beacon Hill have received this kind of recognition because it was well earned,” said Dan Gendler, program director at the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education at Grand Rapids Community College. “You can always expect expertly prepared food there.”

Grand Rapids Mayor Rosalynn Bliss Named Among ‘100 Most Influential Women in Michigan’

June 3, 2016; WGRD

Grand Rapids’ first female Mayor, Rosalynn Bliss, has been named one of Crain’s Detroit Business’ “100 Most Influential Women,” Fox 17 reports.

… Recently Mayor Bliss spoke at the Grand Rapids Community College Class of 2016 graduation.


GRCC In the News, 5-9-16

Change Ups: Lockwood honored as Emeritus Faculty

May 6, 2016; Grand Rapids Business Journal

Professor Walter Lockwood was recently honored as Grand Rapids Community College’s 2016 Emeritus Faculty. Lockwood taught writing, film and literature from 1965 to 2001. In that span of time, his teaching helped shape generations of writers and analytical thinkers. Lockwood is the author of novels, stories, newspaper features, screenplays, musicals, documentaries and poetry, including his novel Jones Unbound, an HBO feature film “Finnegan, Begin Again,” and a PBS documentary “Dyslexia, the Hidden Disability.”

Single mom lives out her passion, opens restaurant in Kalamazoo

May 6, 2016; WWMT

KALAMAZOO, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – Merriam-Webster defines “supermom” as a woman who raises a child and takes care of a home, while also having a full-time job. Add fulfilling a fantasy to the list, and we’ve got a match!

… However, the journey to opening Jaddin’s Precious Soul Cafe in Kalamazoo wouldn’t be easy. She (Quatisa Franklin) knew how to cook, but didn’t have a degree. With three kids to watch, she juggled the daily grind of motherhood and going to Grand Rapids Community College.

State of the Schools: Sustain, Partner, Persevere

May 6, 2016;

Grand Rapids Public Schools – GRPS, MI   Throughout her recent State of the Schools speech, Superintendent Teresa Weatherall Neal repeatedly referred to the GRPS way. And she repeatedly made it clear that in Grand Rapids, the way schools improve is by educators and community partners working together as a family.

… In her State of the Schools speech, Superintendent Teresa Weatherall Neal announced several new initiatives in Grand Rapids Public Schools.They include:

A Middle Years College Program with Grand Rapids Community College starting in 2017. Beginning with Ottawa Hills High School but eventually districtwide, GRPS students will be able to graduate with a high school diploma and as associate’s degree from GRCC in five years

Innovation Central, Montessori students enjoy fabulous ‘Great Gatsby’ prom

May 7, 2016;  MLive

GRAND RAPIDS, MI – Grand Rapids Public Schools’ Innovation Central and Montessori programs held a fabulous, joint “Great Gatsby”-themed prom Friday, May 6, at the Raider Grille on the campus of Grand Rapids Community College.


May 6, 2016; (syndicated column)

When you’ve got the attention and admiration of the Tasters Guild International, you’re clearly doing something great. When you scoop up nearly two dozen medals from the Taster Guild International, you’re performing exceptionally well. Such is the case for the crew at Tabor Hill Winery where they recently emerged from rigorous competition with 21 medals for Tabor Hill wines.

Tasters Guild International is a “Wine & Food Appreciation Society” based in Grand Rapids with administrative offices in Washington, D.C.. They recently conducted their 29th Annual International Wine Judging held at the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education in Grand Rapids.

Celebration of life held for GRCC homicide victim

May 7, 2016; WZZM

MUSKEGON, MICH. – A celebration of life service for Jeanne Lyn Huntoon, who was killed on Grand Rapids Community College’s campus last weekend, was held Saturday at Pat’s Roadhouse in Muskegon.