News briefs 3/1/18

U.S. Rep. Bill Huizenga releases statement on Haas’ retirement

U.S. Rep. Bill Huizenga (R-Zeeland) offered a statement on Grand Valley State University President Thomas Haas’ retirement announcement:

Under the leadership of Thomas J. Haas, Grand Valley State University has transformed into a nationally recognized and respected educational institution that attracts students from across the nation and around the globe. While I am sad to see President Haas announce his retirement, I look forward to working with him for the remainder of his time at Grand Valley to strengthen educational opportunities in West Michigan and make our community an even better place to live, work, and raise a family.

Health Forum of West Michigan returning to campus

Grand Valley State University will once again host the Health Forum of West Michigan on Friday, March 2, at 8 a.m. at the DeVos Center Loosemore Auditorium. A light breakfast will be served at 7:30 a.m.

The theme of the event is “Healthcare Reform.” Speakers will address the current state of health insurance in the West Michigan region. Todd Anderson, director of public policy and regulatory affairs for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan; Laura Appel, senior vice president and chief innovation officer for Michigan Health and Hospital Association; Frank E. Belsito, chief physician executive and chief population health officer for Metro Health-University of Michigan Health; and Marti Lolli, senior vice president and chief marketing officer for Priority Health will participate in a panel discussion. Sebastian Linde, assistant professor of economics at GVSU, will moderate the discussion.

The Health Forum of West Michigan series is sponsored by the Office of the Vice Provost for Health; Midwest Interprofessional Practice, Education and Research Center; Michigan State University College of Human Medicine; and the Michigan Center for Clinical Systems Improvement. A panel discussion is held on the first Friday of each month.

GVSU president traveling to Lansing to fight for state funding

On Thursday, March 1, Grand Valley State University President Thomas Haas will travel to the State Capitol to vouch for an increase in state funding from the Michigan government. 

“We cannot tolerate any further disinvestment in higher education,” Haas said in his retirement address. “Education is a public good, and states that invest in it have more lively economies and communities.” 

He later expanded on the point, adding “resources enable mission. Resources aren’t the end-all. So, I need to have the appropriate resources. As a public institution, and delivering the talent needed for this state, it’s a public good.”

Increased state funding has also been a priority for student senate this year.

Gubernatorial candidate visiting GVSU

Michigan democratic gubernatorial candidate Abdul El-Sayed will be visiting Grand Valley State University on Wednesday, March 14, according to a student senator with knowledge of the situation. Exact time and location details have yet to be disclosed. 

At the event, El-Sayed will discuss his campaign mission, including his stances on state funding for higher education, affordable housing and marijuana legalization.