Horizons Winter 2024

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President's Desk

Our GVSU family often talks about our “secret sauce.”  You are a crucial part of that mix, and I’m excited for you to read this issue of Horizons to see some of the ways your giving is making a difference. Philanthropic support has been instrumental in deepening partnerships throughout our community. These partnerships not only amplify students' access to GVSU – they address critical needs in our region and expand our culture of innovation and applied research.

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Student Impact

Numbers and Names

Lupe Hernandez, Class of 2025, is driven by the stories that data can tell and the people behind each data point. Back in school after a 17-year break, Hernandez is pursuing both a bachelor's and master's degree in applied computer science at Grand Valley State University, with a focus on human-data interaction. Hernandez's years of working with people, combined with his technical skills, make this area of study a perfect fit.

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Why We Give

Investing in the Future

In 1989, after seven years teaching at the United States Naval Academy, Dr. Shirley Fleischmann joined the engineering department at Grand Valley State University. For Professor Fleischmann, Grand Valley’s focus on high-caliber teaching and professional immersion are both defining features of the program. So, when she learned from a colleague that the university would match employee giving to an endowed fund, she and her husband, Frederick, established the Dr. Shirley T. & Frederick R. Fleischmann Engineering Endowment to assist junior and senior level engineering students with the cost of their tuition. 

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From Classroom to Career

This past year, Michigan Software Labs – along with four other local companies – helped Grand Valley State University launch a new partnership called the Laker Accelerated Talent Link. The program is focused on creating innovative talent pipelines for the region by providing students with an employer-sponsored scholarship, access to career-specific certificates, internships, networking opportunities, and potential employment opportunities post graduation. Michigan Software Labs is excited about the ways they get to pour into students as they simultaneously enhance their own culture and grow their employees through the experience. 

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Fund Spotlight

Join Us for Our Inaugural Day of Giving

On March 21, Grand Valley State University is hosting its inaugural Day of Giving, and we're inviting the entire Laker community to show up and support students. This Day of Giving is not just about raising dollars; it's about uniting our alumni and friends in a shared commitment to excellence and innovation. You can make your gift early and be one of the first to join those rallying around Day of Giving! Together, we will help empower learners in their pursuits, professions, and purpose. 

Make your Day of Giving gift today


Thank you to the donors who established new endowments and scholarships and to the new Gillett Society members who have included Grand Valley State University in their estate plans. You are empowering learners in their pursuits, professions, and purpose. Because of your gifts, Grand Valley's impact on our community continues to grow. 

See full list here


Grand Valley University Foundation Holiday Party

On Tuesday, December 5, 2023, the Grand Valley University Foundation hosted its annual holiday reception at Cascade Hills Country Club. It was a time to celebrate all the successes of the year and look ahead to 2024 and all the possibilities that await. 

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Naples Dinner and Forum

On Thursday, February 8, the Grand Valley University Foundation hosted its annual Dinner and Forum at Grey Oaks Country Club in Naples, Florida. Guests learned about The Future of Education from a panel of four GVSU faculty and experts who delved into evolving landscape of learning and how each of their areas of expertise integrates to produce the decision makers and leaders of tomorrow. 

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Thomas J. Haas Court Naming

On Saturday, February 24, Laker friends joined President Philomena V. Mantella to officially name the Fieldhouse Arena Court in recognition of President Emeritus Thomas J. Haas. Guests were invited to stay for the women's and men's basketball games following the dedication. Read more about the day here.

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Horizons Feedback

We hope that Horizons offers you a window into the transformative impact of your generosity at Grand Valley State University. Your insights are important to us, and we would love to know what you'd like to see in future editions of Horizons, ensuring it continues to inspire, inform, and celebrate your investment in Grand Valley's future. 

Take the survey

Campus News

Blue Dot, big impact: Gov. Whitmer visits campus, signs bill with $30 million for GV tech hub

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GVSU Board approves creating college focused on computing and advanced technology

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Omni from Grand Valley State University provides adults with pathways for degrees and skills

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Page last modified March 13, 2024