The third Grand Rapids Community College Armen Awards will take place today.
The competition, funded by alumnus Armen Oumedian, was designed to recognize and reward innovative ideas.
While previous years rewarded ideas only, this year, the focus is on the impact of service learning projects already in place.
“We have eight projects, and all of them did the same thing,” said Michael Schavey, associate director of the Department of Experiential Learning and organizer of the awards this year. “(The finalists) reached out to a community organization, met with them, tried to figure out what their needs were, and then tried to integrate it into the learning of the class…This year is very much focused on collaboration, partnership and impact.”
Each group consists of a faculty member, a community partner and up to three students.
According to the GRCC press release, this year’s finalists and their projects include:
- The Mobile Device Security and Development course partnered with the Collegiate newspaper to create a mobile app to increase access and readership.
- The Child Psychology course partnered with Family Promise to provide child-care services to homeless families seeking respite or time to seek employment.
- The Community Transcultural Nursing course partnered with the American Red Cross to teach GRCC students the life-changing skill of CPR.
- The Community Dental Health course partnered with the Salvation Army-Booth Family Services to provide oral hygiene education to pregnant teens and teen mothers.
- The College Writing course partnered with the Grand Rapids Public Library to administer the One Book, One City for Kids program in Grand Rapids Public Schools.
- The Consulting with Writers course partnered with GRCC’s Writing Lab to train students to serve as tutors.
- The Community Transcultural Nursing course partnered with the North End Community Ministry to educate its clients on healthy meal planning and recipes when they select items from the food pantry.
- The Principles of Physical Education course partnered with East Leonard Elementary in the Grand Rapids school district to administer the Organ Wise Guys program, designed to help children develop a healthy lifestyle.
“The award is basically to demonstrate that you truly did collaborate,” Schavey said.
Schavey said judges will decide the winners based how the collaboration has effected the community partners and students’ education through service learning.
The awards will be $3,000 for first place, $1,500 for second place and $750 for third place.
Parking passes will be provided for the GRCC Lyon Parking Ramp. The event will take place 3 p.m. – 5 p.m. in the Kendall College Federal Building in room 217.