Courtesy / BlackBoard.com

Blackboard Ally provides resources to improve accessibility

Many students may not have noticed the small, grey arrow added next to files in Blackboard over the summer, but for the nearly 1,600 students with documented disabilities on campus, it may make a world of difference. The visibly subtle change comes as part of an additional tool added to Blackboard called Blackboard Ally, which has been increasing the accessibility of files since its first semester with a full student body this fall.  Blackboard Ally is a tool that works in conjunction with Blackboard to analyze files and convert them into a variety of accessible formats to better support students with disabilities, said Associate Director of eLearning and Emerging Technologies Eric Kunnen. Through faculty accounts, the tool also provides educators with resources to view the current accessibility ratings of their materials, as well as tutorials to raise their ratings.

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Courtesy / Flickr

GVSU celebrates open access week

For the past several years Grand Valley State University has been dedicated to creating a space for open access materials to broaden the resources for community learning. Grand Valley’s University Libraries currently holds over 40,000 items in its open access e-Reserve, and the libraries’ ScholarWorks service has seen about 5,120,509 downloads to date. These extensive resources are why GVSU is holding an open access symposium on Monday, Oct. 22 to celebrate and learn more about open access efforts. 

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Courtesy / Taylor Grant

Gone Phishing

After a recent email scam floated around to students at Grand Valley State University, the Grand Valley Police Department and IT HelpDesk is warning students to watch out for phishing, the fraudulent collection of personal information via email.  Last week, some students received an email recruiting for a personal assistant job. The email gives a job description, wage information and other seemingly legitimate details to garner student interest. However, after responding to the message, many students caught on quickly that something wasn’t right.

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GVSU Battle of the Valleys game on Saturday September 30, 2017. GVL / Archive

GV, Saginaw Valley showcase fundraising rivalry with Battle of the Valleys

East versus West, Cardinals versus Lakers, Grand Valley versus Saginaw Valley.  Grand Valley State University's Student Senate is kicking off the 2018 Battle of the Valleys this week in preparation for the upcoming rivalry game occurring on Saturday, Oct. 27.  Although the football game is often the focus during the week, the rivalry extends beyond the goal lines, as both schools are competing to raise funds for charity organizations within their communities. This year’s funds go toward the Replenish Food Pantry, an on-campus charity tasked with assisting students who may be struggling with food insecurity. 

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Courtesy / Oxford University Press

Great Lakes History Conference discusses history through gaming

The Great Lakes History Conference, Grand Valley State’s annual conference discussing themes in history education and research, gained a competitive edge this year with its new theme: “Playing with History.” The conference, which spanned from Oct 12-13, focused on gaming and competition as a means to improve upon history education within the classroom.  

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The Women's Center can provide resources for women going through domestic violence. GVL / Sheila Babbitt

GVSU encourages students to speak up against sexual violence

Every 98 seconds, someone experiences sexual violence in America. Out of every 1,000 reported cases, only six people will see time in prison, according to RAINN.org. Since the Fall 2018 semester began at Grand Valley State University, the Grand Valley Police Department has received reports of sexual violence nearly every week from students living on or near campus. Though some students have reported their situations, only 31 percent of all sexual violence cases are reported. 

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Courtesy / gvsu.edu

GV to host second panel on interfaith and life after death

On Tuesday, Oct. 9, Grand Valley State University hosted a panel titled, “What Happens When You Die?” sponsored by the Kaufman Interfaith Institute in partnership with Making Choices Michigan, a registered non-profit organization devoted to changing the narrative about healthcare decision-making, including at the end of life. The panel, held for the first time ever at GVSU, took place at the Pew Campus' Eberhard Center in downtown Grand Rapids and discussed what happens when you die, exploring the beliefs and practices of faith traditions that inform end-of-life care. 

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