Renovated spaces, helpful guides will greet GRCC students



Leah Nixon

Director of Communications


Aug. 22, 2013 GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — New students -- and even returning ones -- will see big changes at Grand Rapids Community College when classes kick off on Aug. 26.

Construction crews have been busy at GRCC's Cook Academic Hall and Main Building, renovating classrooms and labs before students return for fall.

Here's some of what students will notice:

  • The business department has three new computer labs on the second floor of Main, with eight new classrooms coming in September.
  • The nursing, occupational therapy assistant and workforce training programs will make use of new bed labs and a state-of-the-art simulation lab on the fourth floor of Cook.
  • The health sciences resources and tutoring lab is locating to the fourth floor of Cook, with expanded computer resources and study spaces for students.
  • The reading, writing and language arts tutoring lab will be located on Cook's fifth floor, with expanded computer lab services that can serve a few people working together or entire classes.
  • Sleek new study areas -- for individuals and groups of different sizes -- are available throughout the buildings.
  • Restrooms on Cook's fourth and fifth floors have been completely renovated.

While campus has been busy this summer with the completion of these changes, students will find plenty of help navigating them on the first day of classes. Faculty and staff will be in Bostwick Commons, the Main Building, the Wisner-Bottrall Applied Technology Center and Sneden Hall to help students navigate the campus. They'll be carrying tablet computers and wearing special GRCC buttons that invite students to "Ask Me."

"We have had employees volunteer for many years during the first few days of classes, but we decided that by using 'roaming' volunteers, we can become more engaged with our students," said Sara Dorer, GRCC's director of student life and conduct. "We can be present to help with questions, walk people to new locations if necessary, or simply stop and talk with someone about how their first week is going. Employees will be there to both answer questions -- but also to make connections."

Each of GRCC's campuses will highlight the many opportunities and activities being offered. Here are some key dates to note:

Lakeshore Welcome Day -- 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sept. 5 at Thompson M-TEC, 6364 136th Ave. in Holland.

Student Welcome Week, with free food and entertainment -- 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 9 through 12 at GRCC's Bostwick Commons.

GRCC Club Days, an opportunity to check out all of the college's clubs -- 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 10 and 11 at Bostwick Commons.

Grand Rapids Community College, established in 1914, offers opportunities for more than 30,000 students annually in degree courses, certification and training programs, workshops and personal enrichment classes. GRCC holds classes on the downtown Grand Rapids campus as well as several locations throughout Kent and Ottawa counties.