News Briefs 11/25

GVPD hits halfway point in high-definition camera update

Following a proposal to install cameras around the university, GVPD is still working to fulfill this plan, reaching nearly a halfway point. Assistant Director of Public Safety Jeff Stoll said that the cameras are being updated to include high-definition technology. The cameras are able to display faces with more clarity, which has led to improvements in police work, Stoll said.

The addition of cameras around campus puts Grand Valley State University ahead of other Michigan universities in terms of safety, Stoll said, particularly with the addition of clearer facial recognition, or the ability to make out identifying characteristics with detail.

“Investing what as much as we have, while we were a little bit late to the game, I think really shows… (the effort) to up our game and set a high standard for our university,” Stoll said.

GVPD is aiming for the project to be done in fall 2020.

Students share research at CCPS symposium

The Community-Engaged Student Research Symposium gave students the opportunity to share their research with the Grand Valley State University community Nov. 20. Sponsored by the College of Community and Public Service, the symposium saw more than 100 students presenting solutions to problems such as climate change, tourist rights and distracted driving.

Myesha Dills, Ha Tran and Katie Yarnell worked together to research marine life in captivity, concluding that animals who are in captivity often suffer mentally and experience stunted growth.

“We propose revising the Marine Mammal Protection Act so that ‘public display’ and ‘incidental capture in commercial fisheries’ are no longer exceptions to the law,” Dills said.

Sophomore business major Brandon Stevens proposed a law that would decrease distracted driving, a problem that impacted him when his high school friend was killed by a distracted driver.

“It should be illegal in Michigan, like it is in 16 other states, to even hold a phone while driving,” Stevens said. “You think you’re only looking down for a second. If you’re going 55 mph, it only takes five seconds to travel the length of a football field.”

Business panel discusses workplace changes

Local business leaders came together for a panel Nov. 19 to discuss their work and how it’s changed to benefit employees. The panel was held in Loosemore Auditorium on Pew Campus and was moderated by Director of Bank of America-Merrill Lynch Renee Tabben.

The panelists shared their experiences working with younger employees and students, mentioning that younger generations desire different things from their workplace.

“The younger generation wants more flexibility and a communal work environment,” said Wolverine World Wide CEO Blake Krueger. “Health and well-being is important to them.”

Khalilah Spencer, diversity and inclusion officer at Honigman law firm, said that her company works with students to give them a better sense of what a lawyer does.

“We show them what it’s really like to be a lawyer as opposed to what they see on TV. We talk about the education that is required and we show them all sides and facets of the industry and how to access schools,” Spencer said.

Panelist and CEO of Cascade Engineering Christina Keller cited high school students’ lack of interest in manufacturing jobs and how her company works to combat those views.

“We are partnering with local schools to involve students in internships and apprenticeships so they can understand manufacturing is about creating,” Keller said. “They get excited about that. We also were one of the first to open our job searches to former felons and to those in poverty who are willing to dig in and learn and grow.”