Once a Laker, always a Laker

GVL / Kaitlyn Bowman Freshmen begin the process of tye-dying their shirts during the Laker for a Lifetime event.

Kaitlyn Bowman

GVL / Kaitlyn Bowman Freshmen begin the process of tye-dying their shirts during the Laker for a Lifetime event.

Megan Braxmaier

Grand Valley State University wants to ensure that a student’s experience as a Laker doesn’t stop once the cap and gown come off and the diploma is framed. Through GVSU’s campaign, Laker for a Lifetime, GVSU officials want to keep the value of students giving back to their community after graduation a priority as well.

“The Laker for a Lifetime initiative is a campus collaboration that is aimed at strengthening the connection for students and alumni by building awareness about Grand Valley’s needs and creating a long-lasting spirit of giving,” said Chris Barbee, director of alumni relations, who is also a Laker for a Lifetime committee member. “This program is aimed at reaching incoming and current students, but will also focus on alumni, parents, faculty and staff. What we hope to accomplish is to connect students to the campus and get them to realize the importance they play in helping shape where Grand Valley will be in the future.”

As part of Transitions New Student Orientation, the Laker for a Lifetime committee held a tie-dying event last Wednesday for freshman and transfer students to bond with fellow Lakers.

Thousands of students showed up at Robinson Field with gloved hands and eager faces as t-shirts were passed around. Between free ice cream and a DJ spinning hits, it wasn’t long before every student was dancing on the field.

“It is amazing how these students, after just recently meeting each other, are showing so much support for one another and are already forming relationships,” Barbee said as he observed the students from the sideline.

Those kind of relationships are what Laker for a Lifetime aims to promote – and getting involved, Barbee said, can be as simple as joining an on-campus club or organization, or just donating time and money to a particular scholarship or program.

Track upcoming events and opportunities to get involved on their website, gvsu.edu/lakerforalifetime. Or, follow the campaign on Twitter @Laker4aLifetime.

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