Middle school students collaborate to solve university issue

two students at whiteboard
Participants in the IChallenge Uth program are pictured. The middle school students spent a week on campus in early August.
Image Credit: Elizabeth Lienau
group of students collaborating
Image Credit: Elizabeth Lienau

A team of middle school students from Ottawa County spent a week on campus working to solve a problem familiar to higher education administrators.

The students participated in the IChallengeUth program, sponsored by the Ottawa Area Intermediate School District. Their task in early August was to propose innovative solutions that would attract more first-year students to majors and programs housed in Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies.

Jennifer Jameslyn, director of the Brooks College Office of Integrative Learning and Advising, said the group's culminating presentation was fantastic.

"I was impressed with how the students were able to understand and articulate the unique value of programs within Brooks College," Jameslyn said. "They had great suggestions for increasing our visibility with first- and second-year students."

Elizabeth Burgess, who will enter ninth grade at Coopersville High School, participated in the IChallengeUth program last summer and enjoyed it so much she returned for another camp.

She said the team interviewed faculty and staff members throughout the week to hone their multi-media presentation. "We learned what Brooks has to offer and brainstormed ideas to advertise," she said.

For more information about Brooks College, visit www.gvsu.edu/brooks/.