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Across Campus

September 11, 2017


GVSU enrollment again tops 25,000  

Grand Valley hit its enrollment goals with regard to total enrollment, first-year students, transfer students and students of color. More than 4,000 first-year students have enrolled at the university for six years in a row. This is one of the highest first-year enrollments in the state, as Michigan continues to see a decline in the number of high school graduates.

Total enrollment is at 25,049 with 4,185 first-time students and 1,625 transfer students. A record number of students of color is enrolled, 4,344 up from 4,315 last fall, and Grand Valley has the largest number of seniors (7,184) in its history.  

"These enrollment numbers show that students and their families are finding the academic excellence and programs they want in a community that is welcoming," said President Thomas J. Haas. "We have faculty and staff who work hard not only to attract students but to make sure they're supported through the completion of their programs. The record number of seniors shows that Grand Valley is retaining students and awarding degrees. We're energized by the atmosphere on campus and what we'll accomplish this year."

Students are coming from every county in Michigan, and the number of students from states outside of Michigan increased to 2,108 from 1,992 last fall. More than 400 international students are enrolled. Grand Valley had a record number of graduates last year, another indication that the university is achieving its goal of increasing retention and degree completion.


RMSC only collection site for eclipse glasses

Residents of North America were treated to either a full or partial eclipse of the sun on August 21. To safely view the solar eclipse, many enthusiasts could be seen sporting specially designed solar eclipse glasses.

Since the next total solar eclipse won’t take place in the U.S. until 2024, there’s no need to let those glasses collect dust, especially when students around the world can put them to good use much sooner.

The Regional Math and Science Center will be collecting eclipse glasses through September 15, and then send glasses to schools in South America and Asia through the organization Astronomers Without Borders for when eclipses cross those continents in 2019.

“These schools cannot afford to purchase eclipse glasses themselves, so we want to donate them so children all over the world can enjoy science,” said Kathy Agee, RMSC science program coordinator.

According to Astronomers Without Borders, Grand Valley is the only designated collection location in the Grand Rapids area for eclipse glasses. The center is located in Mackinac Hall, room C-1-120; glasses can be dropped off Monday-Friday, from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. For more information, contact the RMSC at (616) 331-2267.

two people with solar eclipse glasses

Photo by Amanda Pitts
President Thomas J. Haas was among those who enjoyed the solar eclipse. The RMSC will collect eclipse glasses through September 15.


New chairs of HRRC named, policies implemented

Rebecca Davis, professor of nursing, and Kevin Lehnert, associate professor of marketing, were named co-chairs of the Human Research Review Committee.

They replace Stephen Glass, who in July was named acting vice provost for Student Affairs and dean of students.

The following HRRC policy changes were implemented during the spring/summer semester.

• Only faculty and staff are allowed to serve as the principal investigator on HRRC protocol submissions.

• All individuals named on HRRC protocols must adhere to updated training/documentation requirements.

• An Investigator Conflict of Interest Disclosure and Certification Form must be completed and submitted for each researcher listed on a new HRRC proposal application.

• The roles and responsibilities of authorizing officials have been clarified. 

• Requests from non-Grand Valley researchers seeking data collection, and/or recruitment of students, or faculty and staff members must first be reviewed by the Office of Research Compliance and Integrity.

More information about policy changes is online at


Teach-In organizers accepting session proposals

Organizers of the Teach-In are accepting collaborative proposals from students, faculty and staff members who are interested in presenting at the fifth annual event on November 9.

The day-long event will run from 8 a.m.-9 p.m. with concurrent sessions in the Kirkhof Center and DeVos Center. Teach-In is sponsored by University Academic Senate and Student Senate with support from the Division of Inclusion and Equity and Division of Student Services.

Session proposals should involve educational frameworks for opening dialogues on inequality, systems of oppression or social justice, and should be participatory and action-oriented. The deadline for proposals is October 2; they can be submitted online at


Library exhibit aims to ease students into college life

A new exhibit aims to ease what can be a difficult transition to college life for first-year students.

“Tied Together” is a unique effort by University Libraries to welcome students to campus, with a primary focus on new students. The exhibit encourages students to answer the questions, “Who are you?” “How did you get here?” “What motivates you?” “Why Grand Valley?” and “What can we achieve together?” Students are asked to choose several words listed on a string art board that best answer each question, and then use colored yarn to connect the words.

“We hope the exhibit will illustrate the diverse and dedicated community to which we all belong, and as more and more people contribute, a tapestry of our individual and shared identities will emerge,” said Erin Fisher, library program manager. “We hope also that the exhibit signals to students that the library is a vibrant place where friends and strangers alike can come together to learn and grow.”

"Tied Together" will be on display through September 24 in the Mary Idema Pew Library's Exhibition Space, located on the Atrium level.

String exhibit

A string art exhibit at the Mary Idema Pew Library aims to ease the transition to college for first-year students. 

The exhibit was developed by a collective of University Libraries staff, including Fisher, Emily Frigo, Lindy Scripps-Hoekstra, Erica Millspaugh and Samantha Minnis. The exhibit's informational panels were designed by student graphic designer Nathan Spangenberg. This exhibit marks the third consecutive year that University Libraries has developed an exhibit aimed at welcoming students to campus.