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2012-2013 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog

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Community Resources

Robert B. Annis Water Resources Institute

The Robert B. Annis Water Resources Institute (AWRI) is a multidisciplinary research organization committed to the study of freshwater resources. The mission of the institute is to integrate research, education, and outreach to enhance and preserve freshwater resources.

AWRI seeks to accomplish this mission through:

  • Research into major questions about our water resources, including ecosystem structure and function; contaminants and toxicology; hydrology; land use; watershed, stream, and wetland ecology; water quality; and basic and applied limnology
  • Public education for a variety of groups ranging from school children to adults
  • Outreach to ensure that decision makers are equipped with the best available knowledge on environmental and water resource-related issues, to reduce the uncertainty associated with their resource management decisions

The institute occupies the Lake Michigan Center and Annex on Muskegon Lake in Muskegon, MI. Facilities include classrooms, conference areas, analytical labs, research labs, mesocosms, dockage, and ship support and storage. AWRI also promotes collaborative research and educational programming and offers research space and equipment, as well as ship support facilities to advance such collaborative efforts. AWRI operates its own research vessels, the D. J. Angus and the W. G. Jackson, and offers the Water Resources Outreach Education Program for K-12 schools and community groups.

The institute consists of three main programmatic areas:

(1) The Ecological Research Program, which consists of environmental biology and environmental chemistry groups, addresses questions about water resources, hydrology, watershed ecology and management, environmental chemistry and toxicology, aquatic ecosystem structure and function, aquatic conservation, land use change, pollution prevention, and aquatic food webs;

(2) The Information Services Center, which uses state-of-the-art geospatial technology to collect and analyze data, and condense it into useful information for those who make critical decisions about natural resource management; and

(3) The Education and Outreach Program, which includes the use of AWRI's two research vessels, and provides scientific information to K-12 students, policymakers, educators, college students, and community groups.

Grand Valley students and faculty members have the opportunity to participate in AWRI activities as volunteers, paid assistants, interns, research associates, or graduate students. The AWRI office is located at the Lake Michigan Center, 740 West Shoreline Drive, Muskegon, Michigan 49441. Telephone (231) 728-3601. More information can be obtained from the website:

Autism Education Center

The mission of the Autism Education Center (AEC) is to give professionals and parents the knowledge and skills to support individuals with autism spectrum disorder in reaching their greatest potential. The center is committed to developing and supporting the use of effective practices such as early, individualized, and systemic interventions that are empirically supported and evaluated, and that partner the family, health care, and educational professionals to ensure appropriate support and services in a range of settings.

The center offers resources and training through its Statewide Autism Resources and Training Project (START). START includes a resource center, intensive training, and model demonstration sites. The START resource center is comprised of a reference and lending library with books, videotapes, and curriculum materials, in addition to a website that provides project information and links to information on autism. START also sponsors conferences for professionals and family members.

Intensive training is offered to school based teams and tailored for each school program based on the individual needs of that site. Training is provided using an autism curriculum framework that addresses key competency areas, along with partnering of parents and community. The model demonstration sites offer intervention, assessments, and curriculum that are deemed most effective for individuals with autism spectrum disorder and serve as models for replication, regional resource centers, and local experts. Regional collaborative networks are supported to coordinate linkages among schools systems, agencies, organizations, and universities in each region of the state.

The Autism Education Center's website is

Center for Scholarly and Creative Excellence (CSCE)

Executive Director: Robert P. Smart, Ph.D.

The Center for Scholarly and Creative Excellence (CSCE) promotes a culture of active scholarship, encourages innovation and enterprise, facilitates collaborations, and serves as an advocate for university scholarship and creative practice. The CSCE sponsors workshops, colloquia, lectures, and discussions. It provides help with developing a scholarly agenda, mentoring by senior faculty members, assistance in finding collaborations, and publishing as a scholar.

The center coordinates the efforts of the following units within the university:

  • The Office of Sponsored Programs serves as the university's central office that supports faculty and staff members in the identification, development, submission, and administration of externally sponsored agreements for scholarly research and creative activity.
  • Research Protections oversees compliance awareness and accountability within the research culture of the university through assistance, education, and communication. The office is responsible for activities involving human subjects, animal welfare, biohazards, and chemical safety.
  • The Office of Undergraduate Research and Scholarship offers a variety of opportunities for undergraduates to pursue research and scholarship in various disciplines under the direction of a faculty mentor.

Continuing Education

Where traditional learning ends, Continuing Education begins. Through an ever-changing, ever-evolving array of programs, the Office of Continuing Education helps the university expand beyond the classroom to build communities of lifelong learners who are more informed, better prepared, and uniquely engaged in their work, leisure, and the world in which they live.

Grand Forum

Grand Forum is an educational outreach program for adults 55 and older and is a division of Continuing Education at Grand Valley. Grand Forum provides the opportunity for individuals of diverse backgrounds to meet in an academic setting for the purpose of intellectual stimulation and social exchange.

Led by university faculty members and administrators, community leaders, Grand Forum members, independent scholars, and local professionals, topics are offered in such fields as the arts, business, current events, history, and science.

Through presentations and discussions, held both on and off campus, Grand Forum provides a broad spectrum of stimulating programs in a setting that encourages lively discussion. An interest in learning is an essential part of membership.

Another feature of Grand Forum membership includes the monthly Grand Forum Book Discussion Group, which meets the first Wednesday of the month. Information on Grand Forum is available by calling
(616) 331-6615 or visiting

Professional Development

The Office of Continuing Education sponsors select training and professional development activities to serve business and professional communities in West Michigan. Contract and custom training opportunities are available and can be offered on the site of the organization while public programs are offered at our regional campus or site locations. Seminars and workshops are also available online. These programs are not for academic credit and are offered to meet professional and personal development needs of individuals, corporations, and organizations. For more information, please call (616) 331-7180 or visit

Professional Development Partnership Program (PDP)

Coordinated through the Office of Continuing Education, the PDP creates and maintains partnerships with schools, agencies, and businesses throughout the state of Michigan. PDP offers the opportunity to receive graduate academic credit and State Board CEUs for educators and is a provider of continuing education for social workers through the Michigan Social Work Continuing Education Collaborative. For more information, please contact (616) 331-6522 or visit

Design, Optimization, Evaluation, and Redesign (DOER) Center

The Design, Optimization, Evaluation, and Redesign (DOER) Center was founded in 2006. The DOER Center serves as a community resource to facilitate the industrial application of technical expertise in the School of Engineering at Grand Valley. The DOER Center matches potential clients with faculty members and students capable of completing applied projects. Past clients of the DOER Center include Roman Manufacturing, Lorin Lighting, and Emerald Spa. Students involved in the DOER Center gain experience in applied research and product development. Faculty members are able to apply their knowledge to solve advanced industrial problems. More information is available via email to [email protected].

Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy

Established in 1992 with support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, the Johnson Center is focused on increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of the charitable sector through research, teaching effective practices, and providing pathways to service. The center makes a difference by: enhancing the impact of foundations nationally and nonprofit organizations regionally, improving the quality of community decision-making with community members in West Michigan, and encouraging a habit of civic engagement among students, staff members, and faculty members at GVSU.

As part of the College of Community and Public Service, the center supports university efforts to promote the study of philanthropy and nonprofit leaders in the School of Public, Nonprofit, and Health Administration. As a public service and as a resource for classroom studies, the center provides resources for improving nonprofit leadership and management and assisting with acquisition of new community and regional information and technical skills.

Johnson Center for Philanthropy Programs:

  • Community Research Institute ( seeks to empower communities with quality research and data.
  • The Foundation Review ( is the first peer-reviewed journal of philanthropy, written by and for foundation staff and boards. The journal strives to share evaluation results, tools, and knowledge about the philanthropic sector to improve the practice of grantmaking.
  • Frey Foundation Chair for Family Foundations and Philanthropy ( is the nation's first endowed chair focusing on family philanthropy. The chair supports the Johnson Center's work in increasing the effectiveness of grantmakers and the nonprofit sector through national leadership.
  • The Grantmaking School ( is the first university-based practitioner led program that teaches the techniques of effective grantmaking to foundation program officers and other grantmaking professionals.
  • The Johnson Center Philanthropy Archives and Johnson Collection on Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership library ( serve as a resource for scholarly research by students and staff, faculty, and community members.
  • Nonprofit Services ( enhances nonprofit organizations in West Michigan through educational opportunities, one-to-one consultation, and technical assistance, so they may impact the community.

Hauenstein Center for Presidential Studies

Ralph W. Hauenstein's life of leadership and service inspires the mission of the Hauenstein Center for Presidential Studies: we are dedicated to raising a community of ethical, effective leaders for the twenty-first century.

World-Class Resources
Cook Leadership Academy: A premier leader development program at Grand Valley State University that inspires, informs, and integrates a new generation of leaders. Each year, 40 competitively selected Cook Leadership Fellows take part in the academy's Wheelhouse Talks, Leader Lens seminars, and a variety of high-profile university and community gatherings. Working closely with peers, staff, and a network of mentors, Cook Leadership Fellows enhance their professional skillsets; expand their networks; and strengthen their understanding of self, community, and leadership dynamics.

Hauenstein Speaker Series: A renowned series of talks, debates, and conferences that increase civic engagement at Grand Valley and in West Michigan. Politicians, statesmen, scholars, and commentators from across the country and world gather to address issues of importance to our nation's past, present, and future. The Hauenstein Speaker Series has gained national exposure on C-SPAN and has brought Cook Leadership Fellows face-to-face with U.S. presidents, secretaries of state, governors, and other world leaders. A content-rich, social media integrated platform that brings the Cook Leadership Academy, Hauenstein Speaker Series, original scholarship, and Col. Ralph Hauenstein's legacy to the world.

Bergers-Hauenstein-Markle Collection: A "uniquely valuable resource," according to the Library of Congress, that features one of the world's largest espionage book collections and rare, first-edition books written by U.S. presidents.

Kutsche Office of Local History

The Kutsche Office of Local History is a humanities-based learning initiative that blends academics with service. Through this office, students studying in all disciplines are offered opportunities to blend classroom knowledge with hands-on experience in the field of public, local history. Our mission is to use history to foster an earnest appreciation of our common challenges, common destiny, and common humanity.

Our strategy for achieving our mission is three-dimensional. First, the office will assist groups that have been understudied and under-recognized to document, preserve, and disseminate their knowledge of history. Second, the office will reinforce Grand Valley students' understanding of public, local history by engaging students in hands-on, history-driven community service projects and internships.

Finally, the office will support the work of local history institutions and organizations in West Michigan by providing faculty and student research assistance, opportunities for networking and collaboration, and providing information to help local history organizations improve their delivery of public history to the citizens in West Michigan and beyond. For more information, call (616) 331-3692.

Michigan Alternative and Renewable Energy Center (MAREC)

The Michigan Alternative and Renewable Energy Center (MAREC) is a fully integrated, LEED Gold certified demonstration facility for distributed generation of electrical energy. The facility's base power generation incorporates power from a 30 kW micro turbine with heat recovery system, a 30 kW photovoltaic thin-film integrated solar array on the barrel roof, and a 1.8 kW Skystream wind generator. In addition, solar energy credits are sold on the green energy commodity market.

MAREC principally serves as an economic development initiative and as a technology and business start-up incubator with emphasis on renewable and alternative energy related technology that promotes the development of business ventures in the Muskegon lakeshore and West Michigan region. MAREC offers 6,000-square-feet of space devoted to businesses incubation and technology development. Incubator tenants are chosen based on their capacity to develop new business activity and be a catalyst for economic development and job growth in the area. Five privately funded start-up companies presently use MAREC as their base of operation.

MAREC is involved in large-scale technology development projects. In 2006, MAREC received a one million dollar grant from the Michigan Public Services Commission to build a biodigester plant that converts animal manure to methane gas and subsequently to electricity. The plant is located in Ravenna, MI and has been operational since 2008. Biodigester plants are a key technology in assisting agricultural businesses in meeting stringent environmental requirements. Technologies that convert greenhouse gas methane to electricity eliminate hydrogen sulfide emissions and produce near pathogen-free fertilizer.

More recently, MAREC has received a combined $3.3 million in federal, state and private grant funds to support a three-year offshore wind measurement research project in Lake Michigan. Working in partnership with the University of Michigan; Phoenix Energy Institute; the MSU Natural Features Inventory program; and We Energies of Wisconsin, a public utility; MAREC and the Seymour and Esther Padnos College of Engineering and Computing will lead the effort to develop a greater understanding of offshore wind resources on the Great Lakes. The Lake Michigan Offshore Wind Assessment project will deploy a large research buoy in September of 2011 and will utilize and validate laser wind measurement technology as an alternative to more traditional anemometer wind readings.

MAREC also actively participates in energy-related public policy discussions and supports initiatives designed to introduce Michigan citizens to Smart Grid and other sustainable energy practices. MAREC contributes to Grand Valley's overall efforts to introduce principles of sustainability and interdisciplinary alternative energy education within its own campus and in collaboration with surrounding two-year and four-year educational partner institutions.

Regional Math and Science Center

The Regional Math and Science Center serves the science and mathematics education needs of elementary and secondary schools in West Michigan. The center focuses on providing professional development opportunities for practicing teachers and enrichment activities for precollege students. Preservice teachers are also encouraged to participate in center activities. The Regional Math and Science Center supports the Michigan K-12 curriculum and standards in science and mathematics. The center's staff is available for consultation, professional development resources, and collaboration on grants and science and mathematics programs.

The center administers such popular programs as Science Olympiad, Elementary Science Olympiad kits, and STEM summer camps for students as well as the Fall Science Update and professional development opportunities for teachers. These offerings are content-rich and utilize best practice in science and mathematics teaching and learning.

SCI 580 Special Topics in Science and Mathematics. Lecture and/or laboratory courses or workshops in interdisciplinary studies relating to more than one science and/or mathematics discipline. One to three credits.

Robert and Mary Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center

The Robert and Mary Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center supports faculty members efforts to achieve teaching excellence. The center presents programs throughout the calendar year, including workshops, mentoring programs, conferences, and consultations. Its directors offer leadership on teaching and learning issues across the university with a particular emphasis on teaching within a liberal education context. The Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center also provides tangible support and recognition of teaching excellence through a grants program and the campus-wide Pew Teaching Awards. The Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center is located in 324 Lake Ontario Hall. For more information, call (616) 331-3498.

Seidman Business Services

Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation

The Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation (CEI) in the Seidman College of Business serves to champion and catalyze the vocation of entrepreneurship through development of talent and support for commercialization of new ideas. CEI concentrates on the development of talent by providing grounding in the fundamentals of entrepreneurial practice focused on the application of 21st century work skills: creativity, communication, collaboration, and critical thinking, which are crucial for new venture success.

CEI focuses on support for commercialization by providing an essential hub where new ideas can connect to regional and university resources to maximize conversion to value for the benefit of businesses and the community as a whole. Full descriptions of CEI activities can be found at

Center for Business Ethics

The center provides a forum for members of the local business community and Grand Valley faculty members to exchange ideas on ethical questions for the benefit of the university, business community, and the West Michigan community in general. Entrepreneurs, corporate managers, and faculty members interested in participating in the dialog groups should contact Robert Frey.

Family Owned Business Institute

The mission of Grand Valley's Family Owned Business Institute is to promote, preserve, influence, and impact family businesses through quality academic research, curriculum development, and the delivery of information services. The creation of the institute was born out of the collective belief that family businesses are the cornerstone of a community's prosperity and a vital ingredient in its quality of life. Our national and regional history has demonstrated that it is in the best interest of communities to foster the creation, growth, and continuation of family owned businesses because they are the leaders in job creation, innovation, and in providing stable employment opportunities with superior wages and benefits for their employees.

Despite their tremendous contributions, family businesses face a unique set of challenges that can limit their impact and threaten their very survival. By providing support through research, curriculum, and knowledge management, the Family Owned Business Institute serves to develop, retain, and expand the influence of family businesses within our communities. The institute fosters research through its research scholars programs, its professional relationships and data sources, and its affiliation with local organizations such as the Grand Rapids Family Business Alliance, as well as national and international organizations.

FOBI's website, is designed to facilitate the quick and complete search for information within the family owned business field. A family business Hall of Fame, permanently displayed in the Hager-Lubbers Exhibition Hall, honors those prominent West Michigan family businesses that have been instrumental in the leadership of their industry and community.

MI-Small Business Technology Development Center-Region 7

The Michigan Small Business Technology Development Center (MI-SBTDC) provides no-cost counsel, training, market research, and advocacy for small businesses in Kent, Ottawa, and Muskegon counties. It is a partnership between the U.S. Small Business Administration and Grand Valley. Companies receive business consultation services from an experienced team. Examples of assistance provided include: business plan development for funding, developing growth strategies, understanding cash flow/finance issues, marketing their products/services, and many other areas of business.

MI-Small Business Technology Development Center State Headquarters

In 2001, Grand Valley was awarded the State Headquarters for the Michigan Small Business Technology Development Center (MI-SBTDC). As host of the MI-SBTDC State Headquarters, the Seidman College of Business oversees the twelve-region MI-SBTDC network. Entrepreneurs and small business owners can access the services of their nearest MI-SBTDC by calling (616) 331-7480. The state website is:

Seidman Information Services

Often organizations need information and market research and are not quite sure where to find it. Seidman Information Services, for a small fee, will find the data. They also produce an annual publication titled Demographic Profile for the Grand Rapids and Lakeshore Areas. It is available for purchase or can be found at most public libraries.

U.S. Department of Commerce Export Assistance Center

The U.S. Department of Commerce Export Assistance Center (USEAC) provides practical international trade information and export counseling for the entire Lake Michigan shoreline area. The USEAC is housed in the Seidman College of Business at Grand Valley.

Van Andel Global Trade Center

The Van Andel Global Trade Center is housed in the Seidman College of Business.

Mission, Objectives, and Activity Summary
The mission of the Van Andel Global Trade Center (VAGTC) is to strengthen the community through increased global business by providing international consulting, training, and resources. The center, founded in 1999, is located in the Richard M. DeVos Center on the Pew Grand Rapids Campus.

Van Andel Global Trade Center is recognized as an effective source of international information, training, and assistance services for business and academic communities in Michigan. VAGTC enters into strategic partnerships with members of the university and the business community across the state to accomplish global objectives supporting trade.

VAGTC services include a series of seminars, workshops, certificate programs, and conferences encompassing many different international business topics. In addition, the center provides vital customized import/export and consulting services for all types of businesses, with a focus on small- and medium-size companies. The center has global reference materials utilizing many international trade resources to assist its clients. VAGTC also provides a membership program that offers high value, high quality services to those businesses within Michigan and beyond that choose to utilize it.

VAGTC has provided training for many different states across the nation. Since its inception, VAGTC has assisted more than 600 companies through its consulting services and provided training to over 12,000 individuals. With a growing membership base, the VAGTC is poised to continue expanding its service area.

The center is a conduit for students, providing opportunities for international careers through internships with its clients and opportunities to network with businesses at the events and programs it offers the business community.

Benefits to the Community and University

  • Increase competency within organizations to be globally successful
  • Develop strategic partnership both inside and outside the university to enhance constituents and stakeholders
  • Increase economic development of the region by growing international business

Services to the Community

  • International consulting services, training services, resource development, and facilities
  • Cultural education, language center, and matchmaking/trade missions/business development
  • Provider of foreign trade missions, speaker series, information collector, and intermediary of international businesses
  • Advocacy, service-provider broker, statewide resource center, and research provider

The Van Andel Legacy

As the founder and pioneer of international trade for Amway, Jay Van Andel was an inspiration for those in Michigan seeking to prosper in expanding overseas markets. It is in this spirit that the Van Andel Global Trade Center was named after Jay Van Andel and is quickly becoming the core facility dedicated to advancing international trade and supporting Michigan businesses as they prepare to enter and prosper in an era of global business competition.

While leading Amway to record growth through international expansion, Jay Van Andel became convinced that the global marketplace would be pivotal in enhancing the prosperity of the region where he began his business. Recognizing that the Richard M. DeVos Center would be a focal point for international business education and activity, Van Andel became a major benefactor of the building where the VAGTC originally resided. Named in his honor and dedicated to international business assistance for local companies, the Van Andel Global Trade Center is the university's commitment to fulfilling the global vision of one of Michigan's most outstanding global leaders and entrepreneurs.

Kent-Ottawa-Muskegon Foreign Trade Zone

Van Andel Global Trade Center serves as the grantee administrator for the Kent-Ottawa-Muskegon Foreign Trade Zone (KOM-FTZ number 189). The center provides marketing, strategic planning, administration, and zone economic development support. The KOM-FTZ maintains a board of 12; three representatives from each of the counties: Kent, Ottawa, and Muskegon as well as three from Grand Valley State University. A Foreign Trade Zone is a secure and enclosed area, considered to be outside of the United States territory for purposes of customs duty payments. The FTZ program was designed to promote American competitiveness by encouraging companies to maintain and expand their operations in the United States. Communities that offer an FTZ see economic growth and development and are often stimulated by retaining and creating jobs in the community as businesses using the zone increase their cash flow, save taxes, and improve their bottom line.

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