News briefs 2/8/18

Four GVSU students competing in national idea competition

Four Grand Valley State University students, Katarina Samardzija (entrepreneurship and marketing), Zach Skogheim (entrepreneurship and finance), Luciano Hernandez (management) and Jordan Vanderham (engineering) are competing in the Outdoor Weber Recreation Idea Competition.

The competition allows individuals to vote for the idea of their choice, and more than 80 entrants are competing in the contest. The winner of this competition will receive $30,000 to develop an outdoor recreation idea. A popular vote will determine the top 25 competitors to proceed to the semifinals. After that, contestants’ success will depend on a panel of industry experts who will select 10 finalists to proceed in the competition. The final competitive event will take place March 22 through March 24 in Ogden Valley, Utah, when the remaining contestants will have the opportunity to improve their business plans with the help of professional experts. Marcus Lemonis, star of CNBC’s “The Profit,” will be the keynote speaker during the awards banquet.

Participants can vote once a day until Thursday, Feb. 15. The ideas can be found at these links:





Town hall series takes on Grand Rapids arts

The Grand Valley State University Community Service Learning Center’s Knickerbocker Town Hall Series is returning Monday, Feb. 12, from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. for a panel discussion titled “State of the Arts” at the Knickerbocker Brewery in Grand Rapids. 

The discussion will be led by GVSU faculty. The Knickerbocker Town Hall Series occurs each month. For more information, visit

Radio Hall of Famer visiting GVSU today

National Radio Hall of Fame member John Records Landecker will join Grand Valley State University professor of multimedia journalism Len O’Kelly for a discussion Thursday, Feb. 8, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. in the Kirkhof Center Pere Marquette Room.

Landecker was a student at GVSU (then Grand Valley State College) during the 1960s. He and O’Kelly will discuss the past, present and future of radio broadcasting.

Workshop for student organizations taking place

The Grand Valley State University Office of Student Life is holding a workshop for student organizations geared toward running elections. The event will take place Wednesday, Feb. 14, from 12:30 p.m. to 1 p.m. in the Kirkhof Center, Room 2227. For more information, contact Tyler Clark at [email protected].

Grand Rapids reopens search for city commissioner

The city of Grand Rapids decided to reopen its search for a new commissioner on Tuesday, Feb. 6. The city voted unanimously to start the search over following a motion by First Ward Commissioner Jon O’Connor.

The city is looking to replace former manager Greg Sundstrom, who retired Friday, Feb. 2. Originally, the city had conducted a search, vetting over 60 candidates before deciding to restart.