West Michigan Ethics Conference & DeVos Medical Ethics Colloquy - March 25, 2019

Theme: Conscientious Objection in Health Care

L.V. Eberhard Center, Grand Valley State University, 301 West Fulton Street, Grand Rapids, MI

The DeVos Colloquy Committee and Grand Valley's Office of the Vice Provost for Health have collaborated with Spectrum Health to bring two important events focused on ethical issues in health care to our community.  These events, which share a common theme, are intended to provide an educational forum that will encourage interaction between our speakers and an audience of health professionals, educators, students and community members.  Participants may register for one or both events!


West Michigan Health Care Ethics Conference


You Want Me to Do What? When Values Collide in Health Care.

1 p.m. - 5 p.m.
$45 Registration fee. Open to the public.


Bryan Pilkington, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Seton Hall University

Caroline A. Ring D.N.P., R.N.
Chief Nursing Officer
Spectrum Health Big Rapids & Reed City Hospitals

Michael Robinson, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Philosophy
Chapman University

Megan M. VerMerris, J.D.
Senior Counsel
Spectrum Health


Ruth Sanborn, D.Bioethics, Clinical Ethicist, Spectrum Health (Facilitated group discussion)

Matthew Denenberg, M.D., Vice President, Medical Affairs, Spectrum Health (Panel moderator)


Our DeVos Colloquy speakers Nancy Berlinger and Lauris Kaldjian will participate in an afternoon panel discussion along with Bryan Pilkington and Michael Robinson.


(There is no live stream for the afternoon conference.)

DeVos Colloquy Will Be Live Streamed

Our evening DeVos Medical Ethics Colloquy will be live-streamed and offer an interactive platform allowing audience members the opportunity to participate in the Q & A session via the chat room. Those who choose may also opt to claim continuing education credit for their participation.  Details about obtaining credits online are included in the information below.

A link will be sent a few days prior as well as the day of event to those who register for live stream.  Please indicate your intention during the registration process.




DeVos Medical Ethics Colloquy

(This event will be live streamed.)

The Ethics of Conscientious Objection in Health Care

6 p.m. - 8:10 p.m.
Free and open to the public

Nancy Berlinger, Ph.D., M.Div.
Research Scholar
The Hastings Center, Garrison, New York

Lauris Kaldjian, M.D., Ph.D.
Director, Program in Bioethics and Humanities
University of Iowa, Carver College of Medicine


Jayne E. Courts, M.D.

Executive Medical Director
Department of Internal Medicine
Department of Geriatric Medicine
Mercy Health Saint Mary's/Mercy Health Physician Partners


5:00 - 6:00 p.m. - Light Refreshments

6:00 - 8:10 p.m. - Main Presentations


Continuing Education Credits

Continuing Education Statements have been approved for CME, Nursing, and Social Work.


All participants (both in-person and online attendance) are required to register.  Individuals should indicate their interest in pursuing continuing education credits in the registration process.

Credits for the Ethics Conference will be for in-person attendance only. 

Credits for the DeVos Colloquy will be available for both in-person attendance and for on-line viewing/participation.

Details on continuing education credits will be updated as they become available.

In-Person Attendance:

Participants should register for the event(s) and sign-in at the registration tables prior to the event(s).

If attending both events separate sign-ins are required.


Online Attendance (Colloquy only):

All individuals attending on-line will receive instructions and a link for viewing via e-mail several days prior to the event as well as the day of the event.

Should they choose, on-line participants may opt to earn continuing education credits.  To receive credit, registrants must register for the Colloquy and join the on-line stream within 10 minutes of the start of the event and continue to the end. Participants pursuing continuing education credits should log on to the site individually.  A group viewing exception for credit may be made in special circumstances.



DeVos Colloquy Student/Speaker Meet and Greet Cancelled

The Student Meet and Greet has been cancelled!  We realize that the 5 - 5:30 time slot is a difficult one for students to fit into their class schedules.  However we know that many of our students are registered for either the afternoon conference or evening DeVos Colloquy!  We thank you for your interest and attendance at our main events!



Event Parking

The West Michigan Health Care Ethics Conference is held at Grand Valley's LV Eberhard Center located at 301 West Fulton Street, Grand Rapids, MI  49504

Free parking is available at the Grand Valley Fulton Street lot located just south and across the street from the Eberhard Center.  If this lot is full you will be directed to the GVSU Seward parking lot/ramp. 

GVSU Downtown Campus Map

Some hints for parking:

  • If you find the Fulton lot is full please exit out the back of the lot and turn left on to Mt. Vernon.  Proceed around the block to get back to Fulton Street where you will find the Seward lot (overflow parking) at the corner of Winter and Fulton Streets.
  • If you are running late you may want to proceed directly to our overflow (Seward lot/ramp) to avoid the congestion that can occur in our Fulton lot when we have large events.
  • The overflow Seward lot/ramp is accessible from either Fulton Street or Lake Michigan Drive/Pearl Street.
  • If using the Seward lot or ramp there is a pedestrian walkway accessible from inside the Seward parking ramp. This path will point you directly through our DeVos Center parking lot, court yard, and then due east to the Eberhard Center located just the other side (east) of the U.S.131 overpass.
  • Alternate options are to use on street parking or other public lots such as the Grand Rapids Museum lot (assuming availability) for normal costs.


Driving Directions: Google Map

Questions: Send e-mail dykstrdi@gvsu.edu or call 616-331-5876.

The Ethics Conference and DeVos Medical Ethics Colloquy is hosted by:


Mark Left OVPH Logo

The Ethics Conference is sponsored in part by:


Spectrum Health Logo

Blue Cross Blue Shield logo

Page last modified March 25, 2019