Faculty Awards, PIC, Black History Month, Zoom Room, Staff Updates
Faculty Awards, PIC, Black History Month, Zoom Room, Staff Updates
Grand Valley State University
Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Newsletter February 2022
Headshot of Mark Schaub, Dean of Brooks College

Dean's Message

My love for my students began with the feelings I have had for any student I have ever taught. I love them before I have met them because they are my students. I accept them as they are even as I want their best from them. From me, they get as much caring and knowledge as I can muster.
                     — Catherine Frerichs, 2011
After an initial job interview in a San Francisco hotel room in December of 1998, I was thrilled to, days later, get an invitation to do a campus visit for a tenure-track position at GVSU. The campus visit was grueling but exhilarating. At 7:30 am on the first day, MLK day of January 1999, I first met Catherine Frerichs. Always honest, Catherine introduced herself and said that the restaurant was not very good, but that I had a long day ahead of me, and eating there would give me a few more minutes to prepare to teach a 9:00 am course in Mackinac Hall. It was typical Frerichs honesty (about the crappy food) and typical Frerichs concern for another.  I immediately knew this woman would be a mentor to me. Catherine Frerichs passed away on Friday, 28 January 2022.
Arriving from Albion College in 1997, Catherine was the founding director of the Pew Faculty Teaching and Learning Center (housed in Brooks College from 2004 to 2010) at GVSU. After stepping down from that role in 2009, she continued as a part-time faculty colleague in our shared tenure home: the Department of Writing. I was honored to have her share her memoir manuscript with me, and ask for my feedback. In this book, she details the lives and motivations of her parents, Christian missionaries to the remote highlands of Papua New Guinea. It read, to me, like remarkable fiction. In fact, Catherine once said that Barbara Kingsolver’s Poisonwood Bible struck a deep chord for her.
Catherine loved teaching and loved helping the rest of us find the “courage to teach.” And, of course, she helped as many GVSU faculty as possible hear Parker Palmer in person. She loved adventure, and she was always challenging herself. That, in turn, inspired the rest of us to be more true, and more generous, to others and ourselves. Catherine Frerichs was an amazing and one-of-a-kind colleague, friend, educator, and human being. We’re all better, and GVSU is better, for having her with us.
Mark Schaub signature

Mark Schaub
Dean of Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies

Congratulations to the 2022 Faculty Awards Recipients!

Congratulations to all the 2022 Faculty Award Recipients! The 2022 Faculty Awards Convocation will be held in a virtual format on Tuesday, February 8 at 12:00 p.m. We'd like to honor these Brooks College faculty members who have been recognized for their excellence in teaching:

Internationalization Award

Steeve Buckridge, Ph.D.
Professor of History and Area and Global Studies
Joined Grand Valley State University in 1998
Since he began in 1998, Steeve Buckridge has been a leader in advancing internationalization at Grand Valley. He has been involved in developing and leading two faculty-led programs, served as the inaugural director of area and global studies, has been instrumental in initiating multiple international partnerships, led the Faculty/Staff Partnership Delegation to Jamaica, and has hosted many international colleagues over the years. Buckridge has conducted research in Africa and the Caribbean that has led to the creation of new courses, visiting scholar opportunities, and a recent Fulbright Scholar award. His leadership on events such as Remembering the Crossings lecture series has had a significant impact on students, GVSU colleagues, and the wider community.
Burch, Jacobs, and Moore Diversity Teaching Excellence Award

Andrea Riley-Mukavetz, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of IRIS
Joined Grand Valley State University in 2017
Andrea Riley-Mukavetz lives the mission of creating equitable and antiracist educational opportunities for students. Likewise, her scholarship aims to both teach and disrupt the historic oppression of marginalized groups in academia. Embracing indigenous pedagogy, Riley-Muskavetz leads our campus, including students and faculty, to a reflective and honest re-education of history, indigenous ways of knowing, and guides learners to knowledge, skills, and values which embrace diverse practices. Among her many accomplishments is the planned Sustainable Agricultural Indigenous Space Project. This signature teaching lodge creation will serve as a teaching place, and it will increase indigenous visibility at GVSU.
Pew Teaching Excellence Award

Santos Ramos, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of IRIS
Joined Grand Valley State University in 2018

In more than three years at GVSU, Santos Ramos taught an impressive and challenging range of courses and modalities across the Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies. The breadth and depth of his consistently effective teaching has earned deep respect from his faculty colleagues, because of skillful adaptation of technology and talent for facilitating student-centered learning in a variety of settings and courses. In the words of a student, “I often times didn’t want the conversation to end. Ramos always supported his students whenever they needed assistance.” In his own words, “Stimulating intellectual curiosity in students helps them more thoroughly engage in their own education.”
Padnos International Center office sign

Padnos International Center Now Reports to the Provost

As of January 6, 2022, the Padnos International Center (PIC) reports directly to the Office of the Provost. This new reporting arrangement reflects best practice across universities for international activities to report directly to the provost's office, and the change was reviewed and supported by the New Programs Council. It will allow for budget savings as the Executive Director position is absorbed into the Academic Affairs budget while also ensuring that internationalization and global learning remain front-and-center to Academic Affairs’ mission moving forward.
Kate Stoetzner, Director of International Student Support Services, and Becca Morrissey, Director of Study Abroad Programs, will maintain the leadership roles they have served in this year; they will report to Ellen Schendel, Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs.
Brooks College Dean Mark Schaub has been affiliated with PIC in one role or another since 2002 when he was appointed Assistant Dean of International Education. He assumed the role of Executive Director of PIC in 2004, when the university reorganized and PIC became a unit within what is now named the Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies. Under Schaub’s leadership, the PIC grew in support of more international partners, international students studying at GVSU, and development of faculty-led study abroad programs. Dean Schaub is an enthusiastic supporter of international education in all forms—and he will remain involved in internationalization efforts on campus and abroad. 

Black History Month Celebration

Grand Valley’s Office of Multicultural Affairs will host events throughout the month of February in celebration of Black History Month.
One in-person event, "Talk Back Tuesday: The Invisibility of Black Women," will be held in collaboration with the Center for Women and Gender Equity. The event will highlight the disparities among missing Black women. It will take place on Tuesday, February 8, from 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. in the Kirkhof Center, room 1201. Learn more and RSVP
LOH 227 Zoom Room

LOH 227 is now a Zoom Room

You can now host Zoom meetings in LOH 227!
The room features two screens, a camera and speaker system, and a control panel. The system is easy to use and all Brooks College faculty and staff are welcome to use it.
To reserve the room, and for any questions or assistance with the equipment, please contact the Dean's Office at 1-8655.

Nominations Open for Local History & Sustainability Awards

Gordon Olson Award
Each year, the Kutsche Office of Local History honors those who use history to give voice to diverse communities. The Gordon Olson Award is open to anyone who helps us better understand history, documents history as it happens, or provides unique or essential resources on West Michigan's history. Submit your Gordon Olson Award nomination by February 27.

Sustainability Champion Awards
Sustainability Champions are individuals who, by practice and belief, support the ideals of sustainable practice and using a triple-bottom-line approach to problems and issues. The champions have demonstrated that they support both in word and deed, and can be looked to as leaders in sustainability. Nominate a Sustainability Champion by March 11.

Faculty and Staff Updates

Stacy Boor, office coordinator in Area and Global Studies, accepted a position as database coordinator in the University Counseling Center at GVSU.
Kim McKee, associate professor of integrative, religious, and intercultural studies (IRIS), was named the next chair of the IRIS Department beginning May 2022.
Alex Priebe, office coordinator in the Brooks College Dean's Office, accepted a position as assistant director, digital engagement and communications, in Alumni Relations at GVSU.


Jeremiah Cataldo, professor of history in honors, was a panelist at a virtual conference, "Studies in Second Temple Judaism: a Global Enterprise," hosted by the Enoch Seminar: International Scholarship on Second Temple Judaism and Christian, Rabbinic, Islamic Origins.
Aaron Eddens, assistant professor of area and global studies, wrote an article, "Securitizing the Climate Crisis: Racial Geographies of Empire and the Agri-Fintech Frontier," published in American Studies.
Yumi Jakobcic, director of the Office of Sustainability Practices, co-authored an article, "Social, Cultural, and Spatial Imaginaries in Rural Tourism Transitions," published in the Journal of Rural Studies.
Jack Mangala, chair of Area and Global Studies and professor of AGS and political science, has been awarded a visiting fellowship by Louvain Global College of Law in Belgium. In May, Jack will conduct research and teaching activities and participate in a colloquium commemorating the 10th anniversary of the European Laws and Migration Research Group at the Catholic University of Louvain.
Andrea Riley-Mukavetz, assistant professor of integrative, religious, and intercultural studies, co-presented a talk, "Unearthing an Army of Women: Diversity in Our WWI Women’s Registration Cards," as part of the 2022 History Detectives, a virtual collaboration by the Greater Grand Rapids Women’s History Council.
Darien Ripple, assistant professor of integrative, religious, and intercultural studies, wrote an article, "Brewing through Design Thinking," for MI Brew Trail Magazine.


Faculty Calendar

February 8: Faculty Awards Convocation
February 16: Faculty Leadership Conversation
February 21-25: Mid-term exams
March 1: Mid-term grades due by 12:00 pm
March 6-13: Spring Break
March 16: Faculty Leadership Conversation
April 11: Faculty Leadership Conversation
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