Excellence in Service Learning

Armen Award-winning team of students receiving large check as prize

From 2012-2016, a range of faculty participated in The Armen Awards: Excellence in Service Learning event.  Funded by Armen Oumedian, this team competition event was designed to inspire best practices for teaching and learning using the principles of service learning.  Teams of faculty and community organizations together  designed and implemented service learning projects that equally align course and institutional learning outcomes with community partner needs. 

Below are a list of these projects, reflecting best practices in service learning.

Lauren Elliott teaches Introduction to Biology.  She partnered with Blandford Nature Center to provide students with a real world application to ecology including conservation, invasive species and human-environmental interaction.  [video]

Margie Erlandson teaches Fashion Merchandising.  She partnered with the Lemmon-Holton Cancer Pavilion where students will apply the principles and elements of design, fabric selection and sewing techniques to design, produce and deliver tailored quilts for cancer patients.  [video]

Holly VanRyn teaches Restaurant Leadership and Management.  Her project involves teaching Baxter Community Center Mentees about etiquette while hosting a formal dinner for twelve guests.  [video]

Katie VanderMeer teaches Introduction to Computer Programming.  Her project involves GRCC students going to Orchard View Elementary and teaching programming logic to 5th grade students.  [video]

Leigh Kleinert teaches General Human Anatomy & Physiology.  Her project involves partnering with Jenison International Academy to provide a face to face, interactive biology lab for the online high school students.  [video]

Jennifer Ackerman-Haywood teaches Introduction to Journalism. She partnered with Hospice of Michigan, students wrote a series of stories to educate the public and document the lives of those who seek hospice services.  [video]

Drew Rozema teaches Mobile Application Development and Security.  He partnered with the Grand Rapids Festival of the Arts to create a mobile application allowing event patrons to learn about the event happenings (food booths, available acts at various venues, etc.).  [video]

Sherry Knoppers teaches Community Transcultural Nursing.   She partnered with North End Community Ministry to assess their food pantry needs primarily focused on health promotion and disease prevention interventions.  [video]

Bob Schultz teaches Table Service.  Students in this course created a fundraising event benefiting the Make a Wish Foundation.  [video]

Sarah Krajewski teaches Introduction to Biology.  She partnered with Immaculate Heart of Mary School.  [video]

Bethann Talsma teaches Office Ethics and Etiquette.  She partnered with Gilda's Club.  [video]

Jolanta Lanier teaches Personal Health.  She partnered with the American Cancer Society.  [video]

Hope Hagan teaches Business & Technical Writing. She partnered with the Covenant House.  [video]

Gayl Beals teaches Automotive Job Training. He partnered with Mel Trotter Ministries.  [video]

Aleta Anderson teaches Introductory German.  She partnered with Palmer Elementary School. [video]

Kate Byerwalter teachers Child Psychology.   She partnered with Family Promise providing child-care services to homeless families seeking respite or time to seek employment. [video]

Dawn Zuidgest-Craft teaches Community Transcultural Nursing.  She partnered with the American Red Cross teaching GRCC students the life-changing skill of CPR.  [video]

Mursalata Muhammad teaches College Writing.  She partnered with the Grand Rapids Public Library administering One Book, One City for Kids in Grand Rapids Public Schools.  [video]

Deb Schultz teaches Community Dental Health.  She partnered with the Salvation Army-Booth Family Services providing oral hygiene education to pregnant teens and teen mothers.  [video]

Joan Gearns and Kellie Roblin teaches Consulting with Writers.   They partnered with GRCC’s Writing Lab training students to serve as tutors. [video]

Melanie Schiele-Gady teaches Principles of Physical Education.  She partnered with East Leonard Elementary administering Organ Wise Guys helping children develop a healthy lifestyle.  [video]