by BETH ALTENA Renovations to buildings, classroom technology at stake One in three college-bound students in Kent County first attend Grand Rapids Community College (GRCC), and the average savings per student is $22,000 in two years. Lisa Freiberger, vice president of GRCC, spoke before Rockford City Council on Monday, April 9, explaining the extreme need to approve a bond proposal which will be before Kent County voters Tuesday, May 8. Freiberger said her presentation was very specific to Rockford, where she and her family all reside. She pointed out, however, that GRCC is an open access college and accepts students from all over Kent County but also from other counties. She pointed out that the proposal is not for operating costs but is for badly needed renovations and classroom technology upgrades. “We want to preserve what we have for the next 100 years,” she stated. The millage will fund three main projects for the college. Freiberger said the main building for the school was built in 1922 as the Davis Technical High School. She described it as a very old, very tired building. It will cost $30 million to bring the school up to today’s standards. The music building is also old and in need of renovation. That structure was built as a middle school gymnasium and still has the gymnasium wood floor. It isn’t acoustically sound and was built in 1930. Renovation to that building will cost an estimated $6 million. The college’s preschool program has operated for 20 years out of the basement of a nearby church. Freiberger referred to it as “a phenomenal program in a not ideal space.” She said the college is also in need of renovations or improvements to other of its buildings and said there is a very specific list of projects available to voters who want to look it over. Another important need in the ability to offer high quality education is an update of classroom technology at a cost of $22 million. “We are certainly not looking for brand-new state-of-the-art, but we do need to be up to speed,” she stated. The total bond millage is $98.6 million, which would cost a homeowner of a $150,000 residence $26.25 yearly or just over $2 per month. “We […]
Grand Rapids Community College
Kendall McConnohie, 17, is a senior at Rockford High School and is currently an intern at Kimberly’s Boutique in downtown Rockford. This fall, Kendall will be attending Grand Rapids Community College in the honors program and will transfer to Western Michigan University in 2014. She hopes to pursue a career in fashion merchandising. “I love fashion because it’s a way that you can truly express your personality and have fun doing it,” McConnohie said. “Being at Kimberly’s has been such a wonderful opportunity to gain experience in every aspect of the fashion and retail industries. I’m learning a lot.” “We’ve enjoyed Kendall’s positive attitude, winning smile and her eagerness to learn,” said Kim Smith, owner of the boutique. “She has been a real asset to Kimberly’s Boutique and we all wish her success in her next step in the fashion world.”
Tyler Hall, a 2008 graduate of Rockford High School and former Ram baseball player currently playing for Grand Rapids Community College, has officially committed to play baseball at Central Michigan University (CMU) next year. “We’ve had our eye on Tyler for a long time,” commented CMU Head Coach Steve Jaksa. “The more we saw, the more we liked. He has very good speed and a lot of power. He continues to develop his base-running ability, and he’s very aggressive. We’re looking for him to be able to give us some quality at-bats from the left side, and we’re excited to have him.” Hall has earned first-team All American honors in junior college. He also earned NJCAA All Region XII Division II honors and first-team All Conference accolades in 2009. Also while in junior college, Hall hit .481 with 11 doubles, eight triples, five homers and 54 RBI, his .555 on-base percentage ranked him second in the region and 17th among all NJCAA Division II schools, and is also ranked 23rd in stolen bases. While in high school, Hall earned All Conference, All Area and All District honors in 2007 and 2008, and All Region in 2008. He set the Rockford High School career records for runs scored, on-base percentage, triples, walks, slugging percentage and stolen bases. Hall is the son of Kyle and Robin Hall. He is currently undecided on a major.