Year in Review 2021-22: Laker Life

Editorial Staff

GV hosts first-ever Sex Ed Week

GVL / Sydney Lim

Grand Valley State University held its first-ever Sex Ed Week series of events last week. The event was a joint collaboration between the Recreation and Wellness (RecWell) Department, the Center for Women and Gender Equity (CWGE) and the Ottawa County Department of Public Health.

As universities around the country have adopted an increased focus on sexual-health education in recent years, Sex Ed Week is the culmination of smaller events that were once GVSU’s sex ed programming. As inspiration for the weeklong series of 13 events, the planning committee looked at programs at other universities to see what they were doing differently.

“I went to a conference down in New Orleans and Tulane University has an entire sex ed week,” said Student Health Promotions Coordinator Katie Jourdan. “We met with their peer educators and I was like, you know what, we could do that.”

To further explore Laker Life Editor Jacob DeWeerd’s coverage of Sex Ed Week, visit this link

GV Rocket League team wins match against Davenport at LEC grand opening

GVL / Annabelle Robinson

On Jan. 18, the Grand Valley State University Esports team hosted the grand opening event for the Laker Esports Center (LEC).

President Philomena Mantella attended and made remarks to commemorate the opening of the LEC. The event concluded with a Rocket League match against Davenport. The teams played a seven-game series and GVSU got to celebrate its first esports victory after a game-winning goal in overtime of game seven.

Esports, which is highly competitive computer gaming, is growing rapidly on college campuses everywhere. Players from teams all over the the world, compete against each other in both online and in-person matches. Esports games played at GVSU include Rainbow Six Siege, Rocket League, Overwatch and more.

To dive deeper into Steven Lawrence’s coverage of the Rocket League team, visit this link

GV faculty and students deliberate over college affordability and rising costs

GVL / Rachel Slomba

The American Association of University Professors (AAUP) and Grand Valley State University’s Diversity Affairs Committee of the Student Senate held a virtual discussion focused on college affordability on Feb. 28. Students, staff and faculty came together to discuss the rising costs of college and learn about the factors impacting students’ tuition bills.

This event brought together students and faculty who share concerns about the affordability and accessibility of college. Students were encouraged to ask any questions that faculty could help answer, which led to discussion of solutions and help that are readily available for GVSU students.

To read more of Clémence Daniere’s coverage of college affordability, click here.

Office of Multicultural Affairs hosts discussion on disparities in missing Black women

GVL / Annabelle Robinson

On Feb. 8, the Black History Month series of events hosted by the Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) and the Center for Women and Gender Equity (CWGE) held a virtual event titled “Who is Worthy?: The Invisibility of Black Women.” This presentation discussed the disparities in the number of missing Black women and potential solutions for a nationwide problem.

OMA Assistant Director Juanita Davis began the event by introducing the panelists. First introduced were the CWGE’s Violence Prevention Educator Tiarrah Judkins and Violence Prevention and Education Coordinator Leah Short. Other panelists included students Laresha Lee, Selena Cade and Nieya Thompson, who’re all interns in various roles at the center.

The first facts shared as part of the presentation were various alarming statistics about missing Black women from recent years. In 2020, nearly 100,000 Black women went missing.

To further explore Melia Williams’ coverage of the “Who is Worth?” event, click here

GV alum and current NYU librarian working to preserve the dynamic web

Courtesy / Katy Boss, Copyright Alan Barnett

As the internet has expanded and evolved over the last several decades, websites used by billions of people around the world have become more sophisticated, but also more difficult to save. Dynamic websites, like as those that hold data from journalism projects like COVID-19 maps, are impossible to preserve using conventional tools like The Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine.

To combat this issue, Grand Valley State University alum and current New York University Librarian for Journalism, Media, Culture and Communication, Katy Boss, is working with a team dedicated to preserving the dynamic web.

Boss, along with co-principal investigator Vicky Rampin and lead developers Remi Rampin and Ilya Kreymer, is developing a tool called ReproZip-Web that preserves dynamic web apps and websites. ReproZip-Web is an open-source program that bundles together all the files necessary to run dynamic web apps and saves them as a downloadable .rpz file.

To read more about Laker Life Editor Jacob DeWeerd’s examination of Boss’ web preservation efforts, click here

The bias behind student evaluations

Courtesy / GVSU Promotions Office for LIFT Student Evaluations

Contrary to many popular assumptions among students, taking the time to fill out your end-of-the-semester faculty evaluations does have a tangible effect on your professors. Far from being ignored, student evaluations can cross the desks of a faculty member’s colleagues, their department head, even the dean of their college.

“Different units, departments and colleges may have different practices,” said Ed Aboufadel, Grand Valley State University’s Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs. “But ultimately, the evaluation of faculty involves student evals, and faculty evaluates faculty. So, colleagues have to have access to your student evaluations— they become a part of your tenure portfolio and contract renewals.”

To further explore Ysabela Golden’s coverage of student evaluations, visit this link

GVSU speaker explores loss, public health and immigration

GVL / Annabelle Robinson

On Thursday Oct. 7 the Office of Multicultural Affairs invited Dr. William D. Lopez to speak on campus in collaboration with their events for Hispanic Heritage Month. Lopez spoke on the importance of talking about deportation not only in the aspect of the people deported but also realizing how it impacts the people left behind.

Lopez works at the University of Michigan as a Clinical Assistant Professor in the school of public health. He often teaches about immigration and policing, viewing how that impacts people of color.

He wrote his first book last year, “Separated: Family and Community in the Aftermath of an Immigration Raid,” his presentation reflected back on his book and the people he interviewed in order to write it. The book features the stories of families impacted by the loss of their husbands and fathers, men who were taken away from their families by ICE. He interviewed those who were left behind after a raid in Ann Arbor in 2013.

To further explore former Laker Life Editor Sabrina Edwards’ coverage of Lopez’s talk, visit this link