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Across Campus

February 12, 2018


AWRI offers scholarship, internships

The Annis Water Resources Institute in Muskegon is seeking student applicants for internships and a scholarship. 

Two Robert B. Annis Foundation internships and three AWRI internships are available for the spring/summer semester. Criteria and details about applying are online at; deadline for applications is March 2.

The Bill and Diana Wipperfurth Student Research Scholarship is open to juniors, seniors or graduate students for the fall semester. Information is online at; deadline for applications is March 1. 


Community engagement courses can get designation

This semester for the first time, faculty members teaching courses with community engagement components can apply to have those courses so listed in Banner, making it easier for students to find them.

The Community-Based Learning designation also provides an avenue for tracking and assessing courses, according to Robert Adams, chair of the University Curriculum Committee and associate professor of computing and information systems.

Adams said the CBL designation will be similar to Supplemental Writing Skills (SWS), allowing courses to be identified during registration and on transcripts.

Lisa Sisson, assistant professor of hospitality and tourism management, is teaching an advanced food and beverage management course that would fit CBL requirements. Students in the course are working on a project with the nutrition department at Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital, finding ways to reduce food costs through reduced waste and increased food recovery.

Sisson said the HTM department was among the first to participate in the Engaged Department Initiative, an effort supported by the Office of Community Engagement to scaffold community engagement into courses.


Students majoring in hospitality and tourism management work with industry professionals to restore historic sites in Roscommon. The Michigan Cares for Tourism initiative is an example of a course with community engagement components.

"The same food and beverage course previously had no community partner," she said. 

In her course, students are working and networking with Spectrum Health's nutrition services staff and will give presentations to the hospital's leadership team at the end of the semester, Sisson said.

"It's exciting for them to learn and consider other kinds of food service operations by introducing them to the nonprofit side," she said.

Sisson added many employers are looking for skills taught in community-engaged courses, like teamwork, critical thinking and communications.

Sisson and other faculty members are leading workshops throughout the winter semester on community engaged research and creative practice; visit to learn more. Faculty members interested in learning more about community-engaged courses can contact Patty Bolea at


Retention Focus: Training available to support military-connected students

A resource to better understand and support military-connected students is available for faculty, staff and student employees. 

The 30-minute, online training program covers topics such as military culture, common challenges faced by veterans and support services available to student veterans, or military-connected students, which refers to individuals who have served or are currently serving in the military. 

Steven Lipnicki, assistant dean of students, said the goal of the training to give individuals more confidence when they work with or assist military-connected students — a growing population at Grand Valley.

More than 400 students with a military background are enrolled at Grand Valley this year, and Michigan has seen a 17 percent increase in students pursuing higher education since 2010's Post 9/11 Bill was enacted. 

"As we seek to best support this growing cohort of students, it is our responsibility to create an environment that is supportive and to take steps to better understand the possible challenges these individuals face in their transition to successful students," said Lipnicki. 

To take the course, visit Use the enrollment key "michiganvets" to create a new user account, then follow the instructions. Individuals who complete the training will be entered to a win a prize. 

The training was developed by Kognito, a health simulation company. Financial support from the Consortium of Michigan Veterans Educators' grant from the Kresge Foundation gives all Michigan public universities free access to the online training program. 



Faculty, staff recognized at Presidents' Ball

More than 4,500 Lakers dressed to the nines — complete with ornate masks — to attend the 32nd annual Presidents' Ball February 3 in Grand Rapids. 

Student Senate President Jonathan Bowman and Grand Valley President Thomas J. Haas hosted the sold-out event, "A Night of Masqueraded Mystery," at DeVos Place. 

Members of the campus community were presented with awards during a special ceremony. John Martin, director of Athletic Bands, received the Laker of the Year Award; David Clark, assistant professor of mathematics, received the Student Award for Faculty Excellence; and Marlene Kowalski-Braun, assistant vice president for Inclusion and Student Affairs, received the President Appreciation Award. 

Presidents' Ball is organized by the Laker Traditions team and the Office of Student Life. It is one of Grand Valley's oldest traditions; the first ball took place in 1986.

David Clark

David Clark, assistant professor of mathematics, was one of three faculty and staff members recognized with awards during the Presidents' Ball February 3 at DeVos Place.