Page 22 - Scene Magazine 45-07 July 2020
P. 22

Associate Director of Publications
   GVSU presence in Battle Creek extends beyond physical office space – Staff members at Regional Outreach Center provide resources for students, community.
As students in Southwest Michigan prepare for a new school year, so do staff members at the GVSU Battle Creek Re- gional Outreach Center, located downtown at 8 W. Michigan Ave.
Grand Valley in the fall. They are Jacob Avalos, Dai’Mion Banks, Aubreanna Chaf- fee, Darryl Gee, Jose Hernandez-Chavez, and Jonah Hurtado-Macias.
you there, but we will certainly help you with wherever you want to go to college,” he said.
The outreach center opened in November 2019; staff members support career explora- tion and educational goals for K-12 students and adults in the community, and provide re- sources to assist Battle Creek Public Schools with its district transformation.
Through the BCPS Health and Teacher Education Pipeline Scholarship program, the students will receive funding to cover tuition, fees, housing, and dining, plus a book stipend for eight semesters.
Summer Camps – While in-person summer camps were not offered because of COVID-19 restrictions, Battle Creek stu- dents attended three virtual GVSU camps. The Science Technology and Engineering Preview Summer (STEPS) Camp had 26 students learning hands-on engineering and science concepts; and Summer Health Activities and Professions Exploration (sHaPe Camp) gave overviews on careers in nursing and health professions and more to more than 30 students.
It’s an initiative stemming from a five-year, $15.5 million grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to Grand Valley. Established in 2019, the grant creates a partnership among GVSU, BCPS, and WKKF to aid “the culture of vitality” in Battle Creek, according to La June Mont- gomery Tabron, president and CEO of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
President Philomena V. Mantella said the scholarship program is another tangible outcome of this transformative partnership.
“A culture of vitality speaks to the overall tone of our community and how we’re catering to the various interests around the issues of economic growth and opportunity,” Tabron said. “They combine to transform a place into one where people want to live, work, and play.”
Dual Enrollment Courses – Al Shif- flett III, director of community engage- ment, said dual enrollment courses for Battle Creek Central High School students will be offered this fall, providing students with an opportunity to earn free college credits.
Educational Modules – Sara Burtis, special projects coordinator, has created free educational modules on various col- lege-readiness topics such as essay writing, careers in health care, scholarships/finan- cial aid, and career exploration.
Other aspects of the grant include Grand Valley partnering with BCPS to offer professional development programs and mentorship to teachers, and establishing
Taught by Grand Valley faculty mem- bers, three dual enrollment classes will be available: two in allied health sciences and one in education. Students who are interest- ed can contact their high school counselors or an outreach center staff member.
Now offered virtually, Burtis said these modules can be presented in-person to stu- dents and groups when it is safe to do so.
a teacher education pipeline program for classroom assistants.
Highlights of the partnership and grant are listed below.
Shifflett said although the outreach center is operated by GVSU, staff members will help students with information about any college or vocational school. “If Grand Valley is your place, we are ready to get
The GVSU Battle Creek Regional Out- reach Center is open Monday-Friday from 8am-5pm. For more information and/or to schedule an advising appointment, visit
Scholarship Recipients – Six Bat- tle Creek Central High School seniors received scholarships in May to attend
“Throughout this partnership, we have talked about providing students in Bat-
tle Creek with opportunities to thrive,” Mantella said. “I am pleased these six students and many others were supported in pursuing their college dreams by taking advantage of advising and other important resources.”
A new summer camp was aimed at students interested in careers in education. EXCEL (Exploring Careers in Education and Leadership) saw 28 high school juniors learn about teaching youth and gain college preparation knowledge during the program. Matt Bozzo, career navigator, said partic- ipants earned a stipend for completing the virtual program.

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