G Suite Transition – Early Access to Gmail and Calendar

As our campus prepares for the upcoming switch to G Suite, we understand the importance of being able to configure your inbox and populate your calendar prior to May 6.

In response to this need, during the period from April 22-May 3, you will be able to access Gmail and Google Calendar using your @grcc.edu credentials. During this time, Gmail and Calendar will not be fully functional. All of your email messages will still be sent and received by GroupWise.

On Monday, May 6, your Gmail inbox and Calendar will become fully functional and ready to use.

What does this mean for you?

On Monday, April 22, you will be able to log into Gmail and Google Calendar with your @grcc.edu campus network credentials. You will not be able to send or receive email in Gmail or add external guests to events until May 6. However, if you share documents or folders within Google Drive, you may see these messages appear in your Gmail inbox instead of GroupWise.

In Gmail, you may begin setting up your labels, filters, signature(s), proxy and ‘send as’ rights, and configuring your account to work best for you!

In Google Calendar, you can start migrating your GroupWise calendar appointments and setting up shared department or team calendars.

If you need assistance with configuring your new account, reach out to one of our Google Guides, attend a Professional Development offering, or request an individual or team consultation!

G Suite Tip – Attachments in Gmail

You can now attach files in Gmail with less restriction than GroupWise.

Have you ever not been able to send an email with a large attachment in GroupWise? Google has a better solution to make sure your attachment reaches your recipient. Gmail has a 25 MB attachment size, opposed to GroupWise which had an attachment file size limitation of 20 MB. (5 MB may not sound like a lot, but it is equivalent to 5,242,800 characters!)

The way that GRCC IT suggests sharing file sizes over 25 MB is by utilizing Google Drive. With Google Drive, there is NO LIMIT to what file size you can share with others.

While using Google Drive remember:

  • Do not include PII (Personally Identifiable Information, e.g. Student ID Numbers), credit card / financial data, etc.
  • Unless necessary, do not share Drive documents outside of the GRCC domain

Upcoming professional development sessions

LOTS of Google going on right now – get ready!

The GMail/Google Calendar transition is only three weeks away. Visit the Professional Development page to sign up for GMail/Google Calendar training.

More information about these interesting sessions can be found online, including links to register. Questions? Contact Angela (angelasalinas@grcc.edu).

There are still seats available in the following sessions; you could be there learning, growing, and enjoying!

  • Friday, April 19 – Game Play: Staying Active as a Family
    • Noon-1 p.m.
    • 309 Sneden
  • Thursday, April 25 – Drupal Basics
    • 10:30-11:30 a.m.
    • 351 Main
  • Tuesday, April 30 – Customer Experience and Your Career
    • 9 a.m.-noon
    • 307 Sneden
  • Tuesday, May 7 – Performance Evaluation Feedback
    • 1-2:30 p.m.
    • 207 Sneden
  • Tuesday, May 14 – Active Shooter Response Training
    • 10-11:30 a.m.
    • 234 Student Center
  • Wednesday, May 15 – Non-Verbal Communication
    • 1-3 p.m.
    • 304 Sneden
  • Friday, May 17 – Living a Healthy Lifestyle
    • Noon-1 p.m.
    • 309 Sneden
  • Wednesday, May 29 – Business Writing Workshop
    • 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

G Suite Tip – Mute email notifications

Sometimes you are just too popular, and those pesky email threads of conversations that no longer apply to you keep reappearing in your inbox. You may want to avoid being distracted by an email thread, but still view the conversation later. You may also want to turn off notifications from a forum. Gmail understands your pain, and added the mute feature just for you.

To mute a conversation, you would open the conversation and click “More” from the drop-down menu. Once you choose “Mute,” the conversation is archived. This will remove the conversation from your inbox and automatically archive any incoming conversation threads as unread. A conversation thread will appear in your inbox if it is sent to only you in the “To” or “Cc” fields.

You can easily find these conversation threads by searching “is:muted” or “from:” with the name of a member of the conversation in the search field.

Ready to unmute? Click the “X” by the “Muted” label from within the conversation thread, or choose “More” from your actions button and then “Unmute” from the drop-down menu. New conversation threads will now appear in your inbox again.

It is important to note that we suggest you choose “Archive” over “Delete” when removing emails from your inbox in Gmail. Archive will remove emails but allow for them to be searched again in the future if you need them. Delete will make emails irretrievable in the future, so use with caution.

G Suite Transition Tip – Exporting your GroupWise Calendar

When we transition to G Suite in May, users will be responsible for migrating their own calendar appointments. There are several ways this can be accomplished, for one re-creating each appointment manually in Google Calendar.

Another option is to export your calendar from GroupWise and import it into Google Calendar, for detailed instructions on how to do this, visit this Knowledge Article.

We strongly recommend taking the time to learn more about exporting your GroupWise Calendar and practicing in the pilot environment. See the video below for a tutorial of how to complete this process:

For more information regarding the G Suite transition, visit our Resource Page.


G Suite Transition Tip – Moving emails after the transition

After we make the transition to Gmail, you will be able to send mail that is archived from GroupWise to your Gmail inbox.

GRCC currently uses Retain to store archived emails. This service will be available for a minimum of three years. This means that up to the day before Gmail officially goes live, May 5, 2019, emails and calendar items will be stored in Retain and held in this archival system for three years.

To login to Retain, please go to the Archive page and enter your network login credentials.

Once logged into Retain, you can forward an email to your Gmail account.

  1. Check the corresponding box of the email you would like to forward
  2. Click on the Forward button directly above the returned search results
  3. In the new window, type in a valid email address in the Recipient(s) box
  4. Make a comment if necessary
  5. Click Forward Message button at the bottom

For technical assistance, please contact the IT Support Desk at x4357 or submit a service request at supportdesk.grcc.edu

G Suite Tips: Getting G Suite Help and Training

Google is constantly making improvements to its services, and GRCC Staff and Faculty will directly benefit! Google announced April 2, 2019 that they will be adding a quick access button and Help menu options for the Google Help Center, Google Support Learning Center, and product update information within their applications. This feature will be on by default, and will start to appear April 17, 2019 so be sure to check it out in your Gmail Pilot account on that date.

What does this mean?

For help in Gmail, Calendar, and Drive, a “?” button will now appear in the upper right-hand corner next to the apps menu and your user icon.

A screenshot of the "?" button in Google.

In Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides, the Help drop-down in your toolbar will also include Training and Updates options.

A screenshot demonstrating the location of the 'Training' and 'Updates' tabs in the 'Help' menu.

What is the difference?

  • Help: links to the relevant product Help Center.
  • Training: links to the relevant product Learning Center.
  • Updates: Info about recent product updates.
  • Send feedback: Lets users provide product feedback directly to Google.

G Suite Transition – Department Assistance

Are you concerned about how your department’s business practices will be continued or improved in our transition to Google?

The IT Customer Support Desk wants to make sure that your team has emailing and calendaring practices in place before the transition. In order to do that, we are making ourselves available for consultation appointments to meet with you and your team to help develop best practices in Gmail and Google Calendar.

Leverage the experience and knowledge of the Information Technology department to:

  • Increase productivity & efficiency
  • Identify new departmental business practices for operating in the Google G-Suite environment
  • Implement technology orientated processes and procedures

You may request this service online or contact the GRCC IT Support Desk at (616) 234-4357.

G Suite Tip – How to Sync Google Chrome Profiles and Why It Is Helpful

Logging into the GRCC Google Pilot environment is highly encouraged for you to become familiarized with the features and layout of Gmail.

If you use multiple Google accounts (such as a personal account and a work account,) it’s recommended that you set up Chrome profiles in your Google Chrome browser to switch between them quickly. This is especially useful, as it will help separate your pilot account from your GRCC production account during both the training and months leading up to the go-live date.

With profiles, you can keep all your Chrome info separate, like bookmarks, history, passwords, and other settings.

Profiles are ideal for:

  • Sharing a computer with multiple people.
  • Keeping your different accounts, like work and personal, separate.

You may also view our Knowledge Base resources about creating a work Chrome profile, syncing GRCC Chrome profiles, and other helpful Google topics.

What happens when you sync:

  • You can see and update your synced info on all your devices, like bookmarks, history, passwords, and other settings.
  • You’ll sign in automatically to Gmail, YouTube, Search, and other Google services. If you were signed in before turning on sync, you’ll stay signed in.
  • If you change devices (like if you lose your phone or get a new laptop), you’ll get all your info back.
  • You’ll personalize your experience in other Google products by including your Chrome history with your Web & App Activity.

Note: You can only sign-in and sync your data with your GRCC credentials. Syncing is disabled for all other accounts.

Turn on sync

  1. On your computer, open Chrome.
  2. At the top right, click the Profile icon
    • If you’re already signed in with your Google Account, this will be your account photo.
  3. Click Turn on sync Turn on.

If you’re not signed in, you’ll have to sign in to your Google Account to turn on sync.

G Suite Tip – Accessing your archived emails after the transition to G Suite

Wouldn’t it be great if you had access to all of your emails, all of the time? How about if they didn’t automatically delete after 6 months? If you’re thinking “YES!” then you’re going to love Gmail.

After the switch to Gmail, you will no longer need to navigate away from your inbox to find old mail. Unless deleted, your mail will remain in Gmail indefinitely. As a best practice, we recommend labeling the mail you want to hang on to, and using the “archive” button. Once archived, your mail will always be available from the “All Mail” folder, or by simply using the search box at the top of your Gmail inbox.

To test this feature out, try logging in to the “pilot” environment to familiarize yourself with the features and layout of Gmail.

“What’s going to happen to our old email in Retain?”

Retain will be available after we migrate to G Suite. This means that up to the day Gmail officially goes live, emails and calendar items will be backed up in Retain and held in the archival system for you to access, if necessary.

For more tips on managing your inbox, see the G Suite Learning Center’s guide on organizing your inbox.

The IT Support Desk has also compiled a handful of tips regarding the transition to Gmail. If you ever feel stuck, take a look in our knowledge base over at the online Support Desk – we have a section dedicated to G Suite related topics.

If you have difficulties logging into your pilot account, please contact the GRCC IT Support Desk at (616) 234-4357.


The G Suite Pilot accounts are only for testing and training purposes. Any content migrated from GroupWise to pilot for testing and training purposes will not be moved to the production G Suite environment.

Technology Notification – SMS spam text messages

Several individuals (current students) around campus have reported receiving a text message from an ‘S. Ian DeVaney’ claiming to add you to Remind on behalf of GRCC. This is not a legitimate text message from Grand Rapids Community College. Please ignore the message and do not download the app. The message has come from several spoofed phone numbers with a similar message.

You were added to GRAND RAPIDS COMMUNITY COLLEGE with S. Ian DeVaney on Remind! Reply to send S. Ian DeVaney a message. Reply @STOPALL to cancel. Get t he app: <URL>

If you receive a phishing attempt, report it to the IT Support Desk at ITSupport@grcc.edu or by calling 234-4357. If you have clicked any links or downloaded/opened any files, please let us know immediately.

G Suite Tip – how to create a list for your tasks

Keep track of your to-do list digitally through Google Tasks, a simple application located within the right-hand panel of all G Suite Applications for easy viewing and editing. This means the same tasks will appear in both Gmail and Calendar.

Tasks can be used to remind you of emails to send, appointments that need to be made, or documents that need to be written. (I have created a Google Task to complete this GRCC Today article within Google Docs!) Tasks can be used as a simple way to track how you are meeting your daily goals, and are there for your individual use.

If your objective is to create reminders that are shared with others, you can learn more about the other application found in the right-hand panel through the Google Keep instructions online.

You can create lists to keep track of your different tasks.

Create a list:

  1. On your computer, go to Gmail and login to your pilot account.
  2. On the right, click Tasks.
  3. At the top, click the Down arrow.
  4. Click Create a new list.
  5. Enter a name.
  6. Click OK.

Switch between lists:

  1. On the right, click Tasks.
  2. At the top, click the Down arrow.
  3. Click the list you want.

Move a task to a different list:

  1. On the right, click Tasks.
  2. Click the task you want to move. Then, click Edit.
  3. Click the list name.
  4. Choose a list.

When you complete a task, it will only appear at the bottom of the list it was on under Completed. This means that creating a list for your tasks is a great way to view and track progress for different projects within your work day.

G Suite Transition Tip: Snooze a message until later

Hit the Snooze button! Postpone emails to a future date or time that’s more convenient for you.

Your email will come back to the top of your inbox when you want it to, whether that’s tomorrow, next week, or this evening.

To get started, make sure your Gmail is in “Conversation View.”

  1. Open Gmail.
  2. In the top right, click the ‘Settings’ icon (look for the gear symbol).
  3. Click Settings.
  4. Scroll down to the Conversation View section.
  5. Select Conversation view on (messages will be grouped).
  6. At the bottom of the page, click Save Changes.

Snooze an email message:

  1. On your computer, go to Gmail.
  2. Point to the email.

On the right, click the ‘Snooze’ icon (look for the clock symbol).

  1. Choose a later day and time to get the email.

To snooze multiple messages, select the messages. At the top, click ‘Snooze.’

How to find snoozed email messages:

  1. On your computer, go to Gmail.
  2. Go to the Menu button.
  3. Select Snoozed.

Tip: You can also search in:snoozed.

When you snooze an email to a specific time, you’ll get a notification on your mobile device at that time, unless you turned off notifications. Learn more about notifications.

G Suite Transition Tip: How to do a busy search in Google Calendar

Finding a time that works for everyone attending your meeting can be a challenge. The ‘Find a Time’ function in Google Calendar makes coordinating schedules easier. This is the same type of function that you are used to when performing a Busy Search in Groupwise.

You have the ability to see if someone else within the grcc.edu domain is busy or free when adding them to an event. There are two different ways to do so:

  • ‘Find a Time’
  • ‘Suggested Times’

Find a Time:

  1. Go to Calendar.
  2. In the upper left, click Create +
  3. Click on More Options from the Create menu until you are brought to a full screen menu for creating an event.
  4. Next to Event details, click Find a time. You’ll see the local time for guests in other time zones just below their name.
  5. Scroll up or down the time slots, or click the arrows at the top to view different days and weeks.
  6. Click a time slot and then click Save.

Suggested Times:

  1. Go to Calendar.
  2. In the upper left, click Create +
  3. Add event title.
  4. Click More Options.
  5. In the “Add Guests” box, type the name of the person or people you want to invite.
  6. Under “Guests”, click Suggested Times. You will see a list of times when all guests can attend.

Practice this in the pilot environment!

Please Note: The G Suite pilot account is for testing and training purposes only. Any data, settings, or customizations added or changed in your pilot account will not automatically transfer to the production environment on May 5th.

For technical assistance, please contact the IT Support Desk at x4357 or submit a service request on our Support Desk webpage.

G Suite Transition Tip: How do I compose an email using Gmail?

Need to send an email in Gmail? It’s simple! Go to Gmail:

  1. In the top left, click Compose.
  2. In the “To” field, add recipients. If you want, you can also add recipients to the “cc” and “bcc” fields.
  3. Add a subject.
  4. Write your message.
  5. At the bottom of the page, click Send.

Logging into the GRCC Google Pilot environment is highly encouraged for you to become familiarized with the features and layout of Gmail.

You may also view our Knowledge Base resources about helpful Google topics.

Please Note: The G Suite pilot account is for testing and training purposes only. Any data, settings, or customizations added or changed in your pilot account will not automatically transfer to the production environment on May 5th.

For technical assistance, please contact the IT Support Desk at x4357 or submit a service request on our Support Desk webpage.