Courtesy / Building a Movement for Michigan Gender & Sexuality Alliances

GV hosts fifth annual BAMM GSA Summit

Hundreds of students from high schools around Michigan gathered at Grand Valley State University March 8 for Building a Movement for Michigan Gender and Sexualities’ (BAMM GSAs) Annual Summit. The event brings GSA students and advisors together for a day full of keynote speakers, breakout sessions and conversations. The summit aims to connect those involved in Michigan GSA with each other to encourage dialogue about the societal factors surrounding Michigan’s LGBT+ community.

Courtesy / Grand Rapids RCE Virtual Conference

GVSU hosts fourth annual Youth Virtual Conference on Sustainability

On Feb. 20, Grand Rapids Public Schools partnered with the Center for Economicology in Grand Rapids to host the fourth annual Youth Virtual Conference on sustainability and climate change.  According to a Grand Valley State University press release, the schools involved in the event are part of the United Nations University Network of Regional Centres of Expertise on Education for Sustainable Development (RCEs). GVSU is a member of the Grand Rapids RCE, which also includes other local universities and West Michigan businesses. 

Courtesy / The Wall Street Journal

Marijuana legalization calls for ACES resource expansion

The legalization of marijuana took effect on Dec. 6, 2018, allowing Michiganians who are 21 or older to carry 2.5 ounces of pot on their person and use it at their leisure in private areas. It gives permission to gift the mentioned weight to another over the age of 21. Included in these changes, many of marijuana’s laws are similar to the Minor in Possession laws with alcohol.  Yet, this change did not take place at Grand Valley State University. Due to the university’s federal funding, the use of marijuana is still prohibited on campus, but isn’t something offenders can be arrested for. 

Courtesy / Spectrum Health System Butterworth Hospital 

Grand Rapids hospital costs, growth on the rise

The 2019 Health Check Report by Grand Valley State University and Tulane University determined that both the cost of hospital admissions and health care employment rates in west Michigan are higher than the state averages. The report, which analyzed public health trends in Kent, Ottawa, Muskegon and Allegan counties, found that the average cost of a hospital stay in Grand Rapids climbed from $19,700 in 2005 to $29,900 in 2016. This is approximately $3,000 dollars more than costs in Detroit. The study cited the average hospital stay length in both cities at just under five days.

Grand Valley’s Counceling Center is located on the second floor of the Student Services Center. 
 GVL / Andrew Nyhof

GV leads pack in mental health resource expansion

With mental health concerns rising across college campuses nationwide, universities are providing the resources, facilities and expertise to aid in this increasing demand for mental health care, and Grand Valley State University is no exception.  According to the Center for Collegiate Mental Health Annual Report (CCMH) in 2016, the average demand for counseling services across college campuses nationwide grew at least five times faster than average institutional enrollment from 2009-2015. 

GVPD checks a suspicious vehicle on Saturday October 28, 2017. GVL / Emily Frye   

As GVSU grows, GVPD expands patrol in downtown Grand Rapids

As the Laker community continues to grow in the big city, Grand Valley Police Department recognizes the subsequent need for increased security. GVPD now has two officers on duty near the Grand Rapids campuses, the first step in their plan to establish a downtown GVPD unit.  Upon the opening of Finkelstein Hall in fall 2018, GVPD assigned officer JP West to patrol the Grand Rapids campuses weekdays between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. Starting this week, officer Andrew Dusendang will start his new job patrolling in the evening.

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GV tackles waste issues with RecyleMania

Spanning from Feb. 4 through March 30, Grand Valley State University will compete in RecycleMania for another year. RecycleMania is a nationwide competition challenging all colleges and universities to bring awareness to recycling.  “Recycling (should be a) part of your life, it’s not just a one-time thing,” said Janet Aubil, waste management leader of the campus sustainability advisory council. 

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Laker Guardian hosts app logo design contest

In an effort to increase the utilization of Grand Valley State University’s “Laker Guardian” app, Grand Valley Police Department is running a logo design contest open to all current GVSU students.  “This contest will allow our students to showcase their talents — not only for those going into visual arts and media, but those students who design or draw as a hobby,” said GVPD Sgt. William O’Donnell. 

Staff prepares food at Kleiner Commons. GVL / Andrew Nyhof

Student senate resolution puts meal plan reform in spotlight

For many students living on campus, meal plans represent their access to breakfast, lunch and dinner. While there are a variety of meal plans, members of Grand Valley State University’s student senate view the costs of these plans as a barrier for some students and seek to address the issue, entertaining the idea of an income-based meal plan for future semesters.  Student senator Darwin Harris, a proponent of the income-based meal plan, states that the idea stemmed from past encounters with Replenish, the campus food pantry that services students suffering from food insecurity. He cited a lack of resources and funding as a limiting factor for the food pantry, as it relies on donations and other charitable events in order to remain operational.