Posted tagged ‘physical sciences’

GRCC In the News, 3-13-18

March 13, 2018

Chinese satellite falls toward Earth; odds of a Michigan landing ‘very, very small’

March 12, 2018; FOX 17

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A Chinese space station dropping closer to Earth could possibly land somewhere in West Michigan. The odds are incredibly small, but it has been enough to catch people’s attention.

… Dr. Lauren Woolsey, professor of astronomy and physics at Grand Rapids Community College, has been watching the path of the Tiangong-1. She says you’re 10 million times more likely to be struck by lightning than to see any sort of debris from the satellite.

Downtown museum and brewery partner on Beer Explorers class

March 12, 2018; Grand Rapids Business Journal

There’s a class downtown this week for beer enthusiasts who are interested in learning about hops.

… Students from Grand Rapids Community College will direct the class in a tasting session.

Southern grads Mooney, Nocco excel at NCAA indoor track meet

March 12, 2018; Press of Atlantic City (Pleasantville, N.J.)

… Softball

… Monica Brignola (Lacey) singled, scored three runs and drove in one in Ocean County Colleges 16-0 win over Grand Rapids Community College in the first of two games Friday. In the second game, an 18-9 loss to Henry Ford, she went 3 for 4 with two runs.

Students use everyday objects to study impulse, momentum

January 29, 2018

Students in Randall Creswell’s Physics of Everyday Life class recently studied the concept of simple machines.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

GRCC seismometer picks up Alaska earthquake

January 24, 2018

GRCC’s seismic station (GRMI) in Calkins picked up the magnitude 7.9 earthquake in Alaska on Tuesday morning. The earthquake was located at a depth of 25 km below the sea floor, southeast of Kodiak Island in the Gulf of Alaska. A tsunamic warning was initiated for much of the west coasts of the U. S. and Canada but was cancelled a few hours later. The fault that generated the earthquake was not of the type that usually triggers a damaging tsunami. More information about the earthquake can be found on the U. S. Geological Survey’s website. The figures below show the dramatic trace of the earthquake on the GRMI record. The second image is the pulled record of the earthquake and clearly exhibits the P wave (a seismic body wave that moves through the Earth) and the L wave (a high amplitude wave that travels on the surface of the Earth). The waves arrived at the GRCC station about 7 and 23 minutes, respectively, after the earthquake in Alaska, a testament to the speed of seismic waves!

A readout of GRCC seismometer shows the Alaska earthquake.

Trace of M7.9 Alaska earthquake on GRMI

A readout from the GRCC seismometer shows the P and L waves from the Alaska earthquake.

Pulled seismogram of M7.9 Alaska earthquake showing the relative arrival of the P and the L waves.



GRCC In the News, 1-22-18

January 22, 2018

Morningstar sworn in as first female captain in Kentwood Police Department history

Jan. 19, 2018; MLive

KENTWOOD – Stephanie Morningstar, formerly a Kentwood Police sergeant, was sworn in as a captain earlier this month, becoming the first woman in the department’s history to hold that title.

… On top of her duties with the department, she also is an adjunct professor at the police academy at Grand Rapids Community College.

After growth spurt, Blandford prepares to focus internally

Jan. 21, 2018;

Unlike many public and for-profit companies, nonprofits sometimes need to pump the brakes in their quest for growth.

… Board of directors: Bill Dangl, Dangl Financial Services LLC; Bill Faber, Grand Rapids Community College; Ryan Podvin, Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital; Justin Remmelts, Remmelts Marketing; Mary Jane Dockeray, Blandford Nature Center; Sara Armbruster, Steelcase Inc.; Andy Beachnau, Grand Valley State University; Linda Brunzell, Wolverine World Wide Inc.; Shavon Doyle-Holton, Inclusive Performance Strategies; Laurie Gardner, community volunteer; Pat Gelderloos, 20th Circuit Court; Bryan Harrison, Amway Corp.; Randy Hansen, Grand Rapids Public Schools; Susan (Susie) Meyers, Warner Norcross & Judd LLP; John P. Schneider, Clark Hill; Zachary Verhulst, TowerPinkster

GRCC seismometer records deadly Mexico earthquake

September 8, 2017

It’s been a busy week for seismometers. This morning, at 12:49 a.m. Michigan time, GRCC’s seismic station (GRMI) recorded a magnitude 8.1 earthquake (see red arrow in image below) off the Pacific Coast of Mexico. See the United States Geological Survey’s shake map below for location of the main shock and shaking intensity. This was the largest earthquake ever recorded on our station. Preliminary reports are that there are casualties and building collapses in communities closer to the earthquake. Mexico City appears to have sustained little damage or injuries thanks to strong building codes (since the devastating 1985 earthquake) and an early warning system that gave residents about 40 seconds to move to a place of safety. See the New York Times article for updates on the impact and the USGS website for additional information about the earthquake and aftershocks.

A red arrow on a seismometer reading shows when an earthquake occurred in Mexico.


GRCC seismometer records Idaho earthquake, North Korean explosion

September 5, 2017

This past weekend, the GRCC seismic station in Calkins, GRMI, recorded a flurry of events. Most prominent was a magnitude 5.3 earthquake in Soda Springs, Idaho, just before midnight on September 2. Small aftershocks and more events in Soda Springs were recorded in the following 24 hours. Another notable event is marked by the red arrow on the image below, this coincides well with the timing of an explosion in North Korea, recorded by seismometers around the world. For more information about this event and others, go to the USGS’s website.

A red arrow points out the moment an explosion in North Korea was recorded on GRCC's seismometer.


Adjunct Randal Mergener captures images of eclipse

August 25, 2017

Astronomy adjunct instructor Randal Mergener shared these images from the eclipse, taken in Aurora, Neb.:

The moon is mostly covering the sun. The moon is covering the sun.

GRCC seismometer records Montana earthquake

July 21, 2017

On July 6, 2017 GRMI, the seismometer in the geology lab of Calkins, recorded a magnitude 5.8 earthquake near Helena in western Montana. Buried in the seismic trace of the larger earthquake were two aftershocks, one measuring 4.9 and the other 4.5 in magnitude. In the seismogram, we can see many aftershocks associated with the magnitude 5.8 earthquake. This swarm of earthquakes occurred as the result of strike-slip (horizontal) faulting along the Lewis and Clark line, a broad zone of faulting about 400 km in length, and up to 80 km wide that extends from Helena, Montana southwest into eastern Idaho. Other notable events from the Lewis and Clark line include the August 1959, magnitude 7.2 Hebgen Lake earthquake, the largest historic earthquake in this region. The Hebgen Lake earthquake triggered a massive landslide that resulted in more than 28 fatalities, mostly in campgrounds around the lake. Fortunately, this most recent quake caused only minor damage and no reported injuries. For more information about the earthquake visit the U.S. Geological Survey’s website.

Readings from GRCC's seismometer on July 6 show a lot of activity on the 40-minute mark.

GRCC In the News, 5-16-17

May 16, 2017

A dozen summer camp ideas for the Grand Rapids area

May 15, 2017; MLive

School for West Michigan students will end some time in June, depending on the district, charter, or faith-based school. Here are some of the more affordable summer camp options, including some free programs. Slots are filling up fast, so get your applications in.

… Free GRCC Forensic Chemistry Camp

Grand Rapids Community College wants to provide West Michigan-area high school students, who have an interest in science, the opportunity to use analytical instrumentation to find the perpetrator of a simulated arson crime. The free camp, limited to 24 students, will be held at the Science Center Monday, June 26, through Friday, June 30 from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Visit the website for application details.

Dirty Dining: Target 8 tests find potentially hazardous buffet

May 15, 2017; WOOD TV

WYOMING, Mich. (WOOD) — The buffet at Oriental Asian Buffet is a big draw, with steam tables offering up everything from frog legs to salmon to crab rangoons.

… Restaurants must keep hot food at least 135 degrees, something (William) DeHaan stresses to his class at Grand Rapids Community College.

2017 Heritage Hill Tour of Homes includes 7 private homes, 4 public buildings

May 15, 2017; MLive

A restored 1874 Italianate mansion; an 1882 “stick style” house with working gas and electric light fixtures, an 1875 Gothic cottage with an elegant winding staircase and a 1909 Amberg house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright are on the list this year for the Heritage Hill Tour of Homes.

… Tickets the weekend of the tour are $25.00 and are sold at the GRCC DeVos campus, 435 East Fulton. Free shuttle bus transportation for the tour route is provided.

Forensic science chemistry camp runs June 26 to 30

May 16, 2017

High school students will use sophisticated technology to solve a simulated arson in GRCC’s free forensic science chemistry camp.

The Physical Sciences Department, in collaboration with the National Science and Perrigo foundations, offers the free summer camp to high school students. They will get the chance to use gel electrophoresis, infrared spectroscopy and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry.

This summer’s camp runs from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday from June 26 to 30.

While the camp is free, enrollment is limited to 24 students, and spots are expected to fill up quickly. An application can be found here. Applicants will be notified about camp acceptance by email within one week of program coordinators receiving the camp application.  Detailed camp information will then be sent to attendees.

GRCC In the News, 5-8-17

May 8, 2017

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.”

Physical Sciences Students of the Year

April 7, 2017

The Physical Sciences Department named its Students of the Year:

  • Excellence in Chemistry award winner — Michelle Brown.
  • Excellence in Geology award winner — Kie Bachman.
  • Excellence in Physics and Astronomy award winner — Alex Antonakis.

The students were presented their awards at the Student Leadership Banquet on Wednesday, April 5, 2017.

Michelle Brown, Kie Bachman and Alex Antonakis hold their Physical Sciences awards.

From left: Michelle Brown, Kie Bachman and Alex Antonakis.

Geology students take field trip to Indiana

April 3, 2017

GRCC historical geology students travelled to southern Indiana for a field trip to explore warm tropical waters. Unfortunately, the shallow inland seas that covered Indiana retreated hundreds of millions of years ago. Despite this temporal setback, students found ample evidence of these seas, including ripples from water lapping on ancient shore lines and the elusive Flexicalymene trilobite!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Physical Sciences hosts STEM event

March 20, 2017

Last month, the Physical Sciences Department hosted a collaborative public outreach event led by faculty and students from GRCC and Van Andel Institute. The event, titled “Fall in Love With STEM” was part of a series of similar events sponsored by the Association of Women in Science West Michigan chapter. The GRCC site featured a unique “Exploration Station” format, where middle-school-aged registrants investigated scientific disciplines across science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, making this a true STEM event.

From the Physical Sciences Department, Assistant Professor Ashley Campanali led a station on engineering and Assistant Professor Lauren Woolsey led a station on astronomy. From the Mathematics Department, GRCC student Rachel Swem led her own station on mathematics and game theory. From the Biological Sciences Department, Professor Leigh Kleinert organized a station that was run entirely by the following GRCC students as part of their service learning program: Shelsy DeLeon-Lopez, Afrika Earvin, Alma Garcia-Bautista, Mollie Hettinger, Brendan Howe, Jenna Meyers, Mauricio Perez, Monica Rivera, Taylor Swift, Megan Thomas, and Ana Villagomez.

Sincere thanks and congratulations to all those involved, including the countless volunteers and support staff who made this event possible! Other station leaders include Alison Bernstein (MSU), Jamie Grit (VAI), Marie Adams (VAI), Allie Weber (VAI), and Jacqueline Peacock (FSU). Julie Turner led the VAI logistics and event registration, and Lauren Woolsey led the GRCC logistics and event setup. Photos in this post were taken by Katie Krajnak from VAI. Dozens of families attended this inaugural event, and we look forward to expanding the event in future years!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Free Fall in Love with STEM event set for Feb. 18

February 14, 2017

Investigate a series of Exploration Stations during the Fall in Love with STEM event from noon to 3 p.m. Feb. 18. The free event was developed in a collaboration between Grand Rapids Community College, Van Andel Institute and Michigan State University.

From the very large (the solar system) to the very small (blood cells), explore all that science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) has to offer! Each station is designed to be a 15- to 30-minute activity, targeted at middle school students. Pick and choose which stations to complete, or explore all of them over the course of the afternoon! Program a robot or computer to make a drawing, investigate skeletons by dissecting an owl pellet, figure out mathematical strategies in games, identify DNA to help solve a crime, control objects with your brain waves, and more! Registration limited to 100 students, parking passes will be provided to registrants. This event is sponsored by the West Michigan Association for Women in Science.

This Open House of STEM activities is geared towards middle school and high school students and will be held on the first floor of the Calkins Science Center. The event is sponsored by the West Michigan Association for Women in Science.

For more information or to RSVP, please click this link.