News briefs: Grand Valley Writers Series to feature Nina McCongingley

Grand Valley Writers Series to feature Nina McConigley

Award-winning writer Nina McConigley has been chosen as the featured speaker for the next installment of the Grand Valley Writers Series.

McConigley has written for a variety of publications such as the New York Times, Orion, Salon, American Short Fiction and the Asian American Literary Review.

Her short story collection, “Cowboys and East Indians follows the experiences of immigrants in Wyoming and India through the perspective of outsiders. The collection earned McConigley the 2014 PEN Open Book Award as well as a High Plains Book Award.

McConigley’s presentation will start at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 17 in the Cook-DeWitt Center. She will read from her own work and is expected to take part in a book signing.

Before the event, McConigley will also discuss the craft of writing from 2:30 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. in the Kirkhof Center, Room 2215/16.

For more information on the free event, contact Oindrila Mukherjee at [email protected] or (616) 331-8034.

Conversation on Cultural Appropriation and Pop Culture

The cultural appropriation of Native cultures in pop culture will be the point of focus during an upcoming installment of the Professionals of Color Lecture Series on Nov. 17.

Adrienne Keene, creator of the Native Appropriations blog, will present “Conversation on Cultural Appropriation and Pop Culture.” In her blog, Keene discusses how American Indians, Alaska Natives and Native Hawaiians have been the subject to cultural appropriation and stereotyping in fashion, film and music.

The presentation will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. in the Cook-DeWitt Auditorium.

For more information about the event, visit the Office of Multicultural Affairs website at

Campus Climate survey launch party

Nov. 12 marks the beginning of the GVSU Campus Climate survey, an online form that will allow faculty and staff to gauge students’ opinions on learning, living and working on campus.

To celebrate the beginning of this survey, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, the Women’s Center and the Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center are hosting a launch party.

At the event, students can fill out the Campus Climate survey in addition to participating in a prize drawing for a campus dining gift card. Students can also partake in a free dinner.

The launch party will take place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Nov. 12 in the LGBT Resource Center, the Office for Multicultural Affairs and the Women’s Center.

For more information about the Campus Climate survey, go to

Queer & Trans 101: A Training for Allies

The Milton E. Ford LGBT Resource Center will host a training session for anyone looking to learn more about the LGBT community on Nov. 13.

“Queer & Trans 101: A Training for Allies,” will inform prospective allies on concepts of gender, sex and sexuality as well as how sexual orientation directly affects levels of privilege. Allies not only support the LGBT community but also make a purposeful effort to change society.

The event is LIB 100/201 approved and will take place from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. The location will be emailed to those who register for the event online at

For additional information, contact Scott Burden at [email protected] or (616) 331-2530.

Spotlight Productions to host open mic comedy night

Spotlight Productions at Grand Valley State University is hosting a free open mic comedy night on Nov. 14.

Any student looking to try their hand at stand up comedy is allowed to participate and will be given 10 minutes of stage time. To sign up, contact Abby Lyons at [email protected].

“Saturday Night Dive” will take place from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Area 51, located on the bottom level of the Kirkhof Center.

For more information, contact Spotlight Productions at (616) 331-2806 or [email protected].