Charles Lepper’s investiture as the 11th president of Grand Rapids Community College will take place Thursday, Sept.14, at 3 p.m at Fountain Street Church.
The ceremony will mark the official transfer of power to the new president, who began at the college in January of 2023. Lepper will march in regalia, including a hat, gown and robe. The GRCC presidential medallion, which is a recreation of the college seal and represents the scholarship and authority of the office, will be presented during the ceremony. It includes the three flames that represent the purest purpose of education replacing the darkness of ignorance and fear with the vision of truth, understanding and beauty.
The GRCC mace will also be a part of the event, which was made by faculty and students and includes a rope of gold encircling the wooden handle that spirals upward emphasizing the strength of the institution. The hardwood column implies strength as it supports and elevates the silver globe which contains the college seal and encompasses a global awareness and diversity of the college’s mission.
Prior to Lepper’s role at GRCC, he worked as the vice president at Salt Lake Community College. He also has spent over 25 years working and helping people within community colleges, including being the vice president of student affairs at Tidewater Community College.
Lepper earned a Bachelor of Arts in Human Resources and Personnel Management from Ball State University, a Master of Education in Secondary, Higher and Adult Education from Grand Valley State University, and a Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership, Administration and Foundations from Indiana State University. In 2017, he completed Harvard University’s Institute for Educational Management along with earning a professional development certificate in trauma and resilience from Florida State University in 2021.