Tag Archives: English department

Two Police Academy students win scholarships

Yamel Marmolejos-Tolentino and Tracy Harrell
Yamel Marmolejos-Tolentino (left) and Tracy Harrell

Two Police Academy students have each been awarded a $1,500 scholarship.

Tracy Harrell and Yamel Marmolejos-Tolentino are the first recipients of the Bragg, Harvard, MuhammadSmith Why We Can’t Wait scholarship for students in criminal justice, education or health care who plan a career in public service.

The Why We Can’t Wait fund was established in 2009 by GRCC English professor Mursalata Muhammad, Kent County Sheriff’s Deputy Wil Smith, and Sabrina Sewell-Bragg, an administrative assistant in Greenville County, N.C., to honor family members in public service.

“My husband and I have family members who lived public service lives,” Muhammad said. “Chet Bragg, my brother-in-law, was a police officer in South Carolina; Claude Harvard, my grandfather, created a work force program with Focus: HOPE in Detroit. My mother, Mutasha Muhammad, gave anyone who showed up at her door a hug, shelter and food. This family scholarship honors their memories and helps GRCC students focus on the cultural competency skills needed to work in public service careers.”

While these are the first awards from the fund for students who plan to pursue public service, the fund has awarded scholarships to support students in attending activities that promote cultural competency, equity and inclusion. Last fall, Harrell and Marmolejos-Tolentino each received $150 scholarships from the fund for participating in the Institute for Healing Racism. The two-day institute, run by GRCC’s Bob and Aleicia Woodrick Center for Equity and Inclusion, encourages people from different racial and ethnic backgrounds to discuss thought-provoking topics. The fund provides five Institute for Healing Racism scholarships each academic year.

Engage Writing Contest entries due Feb. 28

The English Department is sponsoring the Engage Writing Contest for nonfiction writing.

Any GRCC student who has taken or is enrolled in at least one course offered by the English Department (developmental, reading, composition, creative writing, ESL, literature) can submit one piece; you can find further information on the webpage. You can submit your work online, and entries are due by Feb. 28.

The first-place entry will win $200, with prizes of $100 and $50 going to the second- and third-place winners, respectively.


If you have questions, contact Kellie Roblin at kroblin@grcc.edu, Meg Lockard at mlockard@grcc.edu, or Tony Dykema-VanderArk, at adykemavanderark@grcc.edu.

Writing conference topics include sessions on journaling, poetry, research

You can gain skills that will help you in any career during the Who Cares? Why Bother? Real Writing for Real People conference on Feb. 7 and 8.

The free sessions start at 9:30 a.m. both days in the ATC.

“The Who Cares? Why Bother? conference allows students and other members of the community to see how professionals from a wide range of disciplines implement writing into their daily lives, both at and away from the workplace,” said James Hayes, an instructor in the English Department.

New this year is a session for GRCC students to share their writing: from 11-11:45 a.m. Feb. 8 in room 120 of the ATC.

“The student open reading provides a showcase for gifted writers to share their work with a wide audience outside the parameters of the classroom,” Hayes said.

No registration is required for any of the free sessions.

Here’s the schedule:

Wednesday, Feb. 7

  • How I Turned One Good Idea into a Book Series, led by biology professor Paul Krieger, from 9:30-10:15 a.m. in the ATC auditorium.
  • Email Like a Pro: This is Not a Text, led by business professor Ann Alexander, from 9:30-10:15 a.m. in room 120 of the ATC.
  • Business Writing for the Real World, led by Penni Weninger, retired from GRCC Human Resources, from 11-11:45 a.m. in room 120 of the ATC.
  • Writing Out the Storm: The Journal as a Companion to Life’s Inevitable Disasters, led by Stacey Heisler, from the Counseling and Career Center, from 11-11:45 a.m. in the ATC auditorium.
  • Media Arts and Writing, led by Klaas Kwant and Noah DeSmit, from Media Technologies, from 12:30-1:15 p.m. in the ATC auditorium.
  • Showcasing Your Expertise Through Writing, led by Werner Absenger, of the Secchia Institute for Culinary Education, from 2-2:45 p.m. in room 120 of the ATC.
  • Helping Student Writers Grow, led by Dan Sullivan, coordinator of GRCC’s Language Arts Lab, and a panel of tutors, from 2-2:45 p.m. in the ATC auditorium.
  • Historians and Writing: Causation, Significance, and Evidence, led by Robert Hendershot, associate professor of history, from 3:30-4:15 p.m. in room 120 of the ATC.
  • A Poet’s Life, led by retired GRCC English professor David Cope, from 3:30-4:15 p.m. in the ATC auditorium.

Thursday, Feb. 8

  • The Importance of Journaling, led by Jeff Kissinger, of Information Technology, from 9:30-10:15 a.m. in the ATC auditorium.
  • Writing and the Law, led by Kimberly DeVries, GRCC’s director of Equal Opportunity compliance, from 9:30-10:15 a.m. in room 120 of the ATC.
  • The Importance of Credible, Research-Based Writing in the Social Sciences, led by psychology professor Frank Connor, from 11-11:45 a.m. in the ATC auditorium.
  • Student writers open reading, from 11-11:45 a.m. in room 120 of the ATC.
  • Human Resources and Writing, led by Christine Coon, from Human Resources, and a panel, from 12:30-1:15 p.m. in room 120 of the ATC.
  • Writing Effective Descriptions, led by Caitlin Horrocks, an associate professor in Grand Valley State University’s writing department, from 12:30-1:15 p.m. in the ATC auditorium.
  • Bluffing Your Way Through College: Demonstrating Competency Through Your Writing, by Dillon Carr, assistant professor of anthropology, from 2-2:45 p.m. in the ATC auditorium.
  • Who Am I in a Digital World? by Kellie Roblin, associate professor of English, from 2-2:45 p.m. in room 120 of the ATC.
  • Publishing and Writing, led by Tricia MacDonald, of Splattered Ink Press, from 3:30-4:15 p.m. in the ATC auditorium.

GRCC In the News, 9-27-17

News Briefs

Sept. 27, 2017; The Torch (Ferris State University student newspaper)

… Literature in person

Katie Kalisz, a professor of English at Grand Rapids Community College and a recognized poet, will be presenting in IRC 120 Monday, Oct. 2, from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. For more information, please contact Dr. Deirdre Fagan at DeirdeFagan@ferris.edu.

Judging the ArtPrize Jurors Shortlist

Sept. 26, 2017; WGRD

ArtPrize Nine hit another big landmark Monday night as the jurors revealed their favorite entries. Take a look at their favorites which include a few surprises and some snubs too.

… The biggest surprise here, and it’s a welcome one, has got to be the diversity of the venues represented in the category. You can expect The Ruse Escape Rooms and Veterans Memorial Park to see an influx of visitors after being named to the Jurors Shortlist. GRCC Collins Art Gallery and Cultural Collective @ Rumsey Street might see the bigger crowds they deserve too. DeVos Place is a regular in the second round each year.

GRCC In the News, 9-7-17

Michigan job growth fueled by apprenticeships

Sept. 7, 2017; Burton View

MICHIGAN – More than one-third of Michigan’s job growth will be through apprenticeships over the next five years, said United States Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta, in an online post Last week, Governor Rick Snyder welcomed United States Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta to West Michigan to see how the state is connecting employers with educators and showing students the careers available to them at a young age. Michigan is a strong leader in apprenticeships, with the 8th most in the nation. Gov. Snyder and Sec. Acosta visited Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids, where they are holding orientation for more than 150 new employees each week. They toured Grand Rapids Community College and Mercy Health to check out innovative job training programs. In Battle Creek, they checked out advanced manufacturing at Bleistahl and ROsler. Acosta told Snyder that he was impressed by Michigan’s leadership in job growth and its proactive approach to our future talent needs.

People and Places

Sept. 7, 2017; Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette

Maryann Lesert has been named the recipient of the Moondancer fellowship for 2017 at the Writers’ Colony at Dairy Hollow in Eureka Springs.

In all of her writing, the natural world and its human inhabitants are equally prominent and intertwined. From her first play, Superwoman (1998), a 90-minute warning of technologies that threaten to erase our biological sense of place, to Threshold, her current novel-in-progress about environmental activists working to stop fracking in Michigan’s state forests, Lesert’s work is equally inspired and supported by time with the natural world. Threshold grew from two years of boots-on-well-sites research on fracking in Michigan’s state forests. An excerpt from Threshold appears in Fracture, Essays, Poems and Stories about Fracking in America (Ice Cube Press, 2016). From 2012 to the present, Lesert has presented her research on the scientific, sensory and community effects of fracking in a presentation, titled Fracking in the Forest, to more than 50 academic, environmental and public audiences across the state. Lesert is a playwright, novelist and journalist who teaches creative writing at Grand Rapids (Mich.) Community College.

Jayhawks volleyball team stays perfect in conference with a victory over Glen Oaks

Sept. 7, 2017; Local Sports Journal (Muskegon)

The Muskegon Community College volleyball team improved to 4-0 in conference play with a four-set victory over Glen Oaks Community College on the road on Tuesday.

… MCC will host rival Grand Rapids Community College on Thursday.