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About Grand Valley

Grand Valley State University has established a reputation for creating unique learning opportunities that attract top students. Its liberal education focus emphasizes critical thinking, creative problem solving, and cultural understanding. Through personalized learning enhanced by active scholarship, we accomplish our mission of educating students to shape their lives, their professions, and their societies.

How we started
Academic excellence
First-rate faculty
State-of-the-art facilities
Outstanding locations
Enriching the community
Our supporters

How we started

Grand Valley State University was chartered by the Michigan Legislature in 1960 in response to the need for a public, four-year college in the state's second largest metropolitan region. Since the first year, when there were 226 students and 14 faculty members, Grand Valley has become a comprehensive university with nearly 25,000 students and more than 1,500 faculty members. For more information on Grand Valley's first 50 years, visit www.gvsu.edu/anniversary/.
 

Academic excellence

Grand Valley State University offers a wide array of liberal arts and sciences, as well as professional degree programs in which the focus is on teaching and learning enhanced by active scholarship. Students may choose from more than 200 programs, including 81 undergraduate majors and 31 graduate programs. A strong liberal education serves as the foundation for all of our programs, fostering critical thinking, creative problem solving, and cultural understanding. This combination of educational offerings helps Grand Valley to fulfill its mission of educating students to shape their lives, their professions, and their societies.
 

First-rate faculty

The average class size at Grand Valley is 27, which allows for more individualized interaction between professors and students. In addition, faculty members, who are actively engaged in their discipline and highly dedicated to teaching, teach all courses. As a result, students are not taught by teaching assistants. Instead they receive the benefit of responsive faculty members and the opportunity to develop mentoring relationships.
 

State-of-the-art facilities

The university offers degrees from its campuses in Allendale, Grand Rapids, and Holland, and centers in Muskegon and Traverse City. Grand Valley continually sets new standards for excellence in how our facilities are used to promote academic achievement. Inspiring classroom and research facilities, modern living centers, and convenient student services make Grand Valley campuses ideal places to engage, learn, and live.

The new Mary Idema Pew Library Learning and Information Commons on the Allendale Campus is the intellectual heart of the university and is already nationally recognized as a model for 21st century learning. It features a knowledge market with peer experts to provide research, writing, technology, and presentation coaching, as well as capacity for 150,000 books on open shelves and 600,000 library items in an automated retrieval system.

The new L. William Seidman Center is a four-story building located along the Grand River in downtown Grand Rapids that's nearly 130,000 square feet and fully houses the Seidman College of Business, as well as numerous business outreach programs. The building enhances the Seidman College of Business's growing reputation as one of the premier business schools in the country and provides business students convenient access to the thriving Grand Rapids business community.

The new field station building at Grand Valley's Robert B. Annis Water Resources Institute in Muskegon is significantly bigger than the original and offers space for year-round research, encouraging better science and better solutions to the issues facing our freshwater resources.

Outstanding locations

The largely residential Allendale Campus is 1,322 acres of beautifully wooded grounds. It incorporates a complete college experience with numerous student organizations, an array of nationally ranked NCAA athletics, and many year-round arts and entertainment events. About 5,800 students live on campus in university living centers and apartments.

The Robert C. Pew Grand Rapids Campus, which includes the L.V. Eberhard Center, Richard M. DeVos Center, and Cook-DeVos Center for Health Sciences, as well as the new L. William Seidman Center provides an important link to the business, health, and cultural community of Michigan's second largest city. With its focus on graduate and professional studies, the Pew Grand Rapids Campus serves more than 9,000 students.

Grand Valley's Meijer Campus in Holland gives students the opportunity to take a few classes or earn a complete degree. Full registration, advising, and library services complement its classrooms and laboratories. Grand Valley offers programs at university centers in Muskegon and Traverse City. In Muskegon, the university's Lake Michigan Center is home to Grand Valley's Annis Water Resources Institute. Also located in Muskegon is Grand Valley's Michigan Alternative and Renewable Energy Center, a business incubator and research and development center for alternative and renewable energy technologies.
 

Enriching the community

The university provides public services, art, entertainment, sports, and cultural programs for the region. Grand Valley's School of Communications and Music and Dance Department offer regularly scheduled plays and concerts. The university athletic teams are consistent leaders in their conference. Grand Valley is licensed to operate the region's public television and radio stations, which are affiliated with PBS and NPR, respectively. The WGVU AM/FM radio and TV stations provide local and network broadcasts, and offer educational and hands-on instructional opportunities for Grand Valley students.
 

Our supporters

Grand Valley has an $89 million endowment, due in large part to the support and activity of the Grand Valley University Foundation. Gifts to the foundation from friends, alumni, faculty members, and staff members help ensure the continuation of Grand Valley as a vital public education resource in West Michigan.

 

Page last modified October 2, 2013