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What's Ahead

January 15, 2018


Speakers highlight MLK commemoration week

A full slate of events on Monday, January 15, ushers in Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration Week on campus.

With the theme, #WhereDoWeGoFromHere, events begin at 9:30 a.m. in the Kirkhof Center with an Upcycling session continue with a silent march to the Fieldhouse for the keynote address by April Reign at 1:30 p.m. All events are listed online,

Reign, an attorney and writer, was the creator of the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite in 2015, when her tweet critical of the 88th Academy Awards ceremony and lack of people of color nominated in major acting and directing categories went viral.

A panel discussion on the week’s theme will conclude Monday’s events; it will start at 2:30 p.m. in Kirkhof Center, rooms 2215/2216.

Other commemoration week events are listed below.

• Tuesday, January 16: “How Shall We Remember?" 7 p.m., DeVos Center; the Hauenstein Center for Presidential Studies will host a Common Ground event featuring Christy S. Coleman, CEO of the American Civil War Museum in Richmond, Virginia.

• Wednesday, January 17: Keynote presentation by Bree Newsome, 4:30 p.m., Kirkhof Center; Newsome is a filmmaker who was in the national spotlight in 2015 when she climbed a flagpole in Columbia, South Carolina, to lower its Confederate flag.

• Friday, January 19: Shabbat dinner, 6 p.m., Kirkhof Center

• Saturday, January 20: MLK Day of Service and Solidarity, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., sponsored by the Community Service Learning Center.


Fair details study abroad programs

Students attending the Study Abroad Fair will learn about program and internship options, meet students who have participated and faculty program directors.

The fair will be Thursday, January 18, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. in the Henry Hall atrium.

More information is online at


Exhibit to explore artist's creative process

For more than 40 years, American artist Herbert Murrie found success in his career in advertising and design. Inspired by an artistic upbringing and personal motivation, Murrie often worked in his art studio to pursue a more spontaneous and freeing expression of creativity, regularly returning to complete unfinished work.

A new Art Gallery exhibition at Grand Valley will examine the ebb and flow of Murrie’s creative process while reflecting back on his approximately 15-year painting career and looking forward to a new body of his work influenced by design and multimedia.

“Ebb & Flow: Explorations in Painting by Herbert Murrie” will include 26 pieces that span his career as a painter from 1995 to the present. Pieces featured in the exhibit will include artwork from both private collections and Grand Valley’s permanent art collection.

An opening reception for the exhibit will take place January 18, from 5-7 p.m., in the Art Gallery, located in the Haas Center for Performing Arts. The exhibit will be on display January 15 through March 30.

During the reception, guests can create their own paintings in a 3-D virtual reality experience. Staff from Grand Valley's Atomic Object Technological Showcase will be onsite guiding guests through the technology.

For more information about “Ebb & Flow” and other current and upcoming exhibitions, visit


Ellis to perform one-man play honoring playwright

Roger Ellis, professor of theater, will dive into the personal and artistic sides of Russia's most famous playwright, Anton Chekhov, during performances of a one-man play about the dramatist's life and career. 

Ellis will perform "Anton, Himself: First and Last" January 19 and 20 at 7:30 p.m. and January 21 at 2 p.m. All performances will take place in the Linn Maxwell Keller Black Box Theatre, located in the Haas Center for Performing Arts. Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors and Grand Valley faculty, staff and alumni, and $6 for students and groups. Tickets can be purchased at the Louis Armstrong Box Office in-person or by calling (616) 331-2300, or via

The play begins immediately following the failure of Chekhov's early masterpiece “The Seagull” (1895) and concludes with the success of “The Cherry Orchard” (1903). The semi-documentary drama is written by Karen Sunde; it portrays Chekhov as a giant of the modern stage who struggled with his literary identity, as well as with the opinions of an often-hostile public. 

For more information, visit

Roger Eliis

Roger Ellis


Conversations of Color series continues

A monthly series that encourages discussion about race, culture, identity and current events continues January 24 with a conversation about the #TakeAKnee movement. 

Britney Underwood, graduate assistant for the Office of Multicultural Affairs, will lead the discussion about #TakeAKnee, which was started by NFL player Colin Kaepernick in protest over racial injustice. The hashtag describes the action taken by NFL players who kneeled during the national anthem prior to football games. 

Conversations of Color events take place in the Kirkhof Center, room 1240, from noon-1 p.m. 

• February 21: Navigating Grand Valley as an African-American Student

• March 21: Muslim and Buddhist Religion

• April 18: Cesar Chavez Celebration 

For more information, visit


String quartet will kick off Arts at Noon

The Arts at Noon concert series will continue its 40th season with a performance by Grand Rapids' own Perugino String Quartet.

Named after Renaissance artist Pietro Perugino of Grand Rapids’ sister city Perugia, Italy, the Perugino String Quartet is comprised of Grand Rapids Symphony members including, Eric Tanner (violin) and Christopher Martin (violin), Barbara Corbato (viola) and Stacey Bosman Tanner (cello). Together, the quartet performs classics of the string quartet repertoire, as well as a variety of new chamber works.

All Arts at Noon concerts will take place in the Cook-DeWitt Center, begin at noon, and last approximately one hour. Each concert is free and open to the public.

Below is a full schedule of winter Arts at Noon concerts:

January 24 - Perugino Quartet

February 28 - Robert Black, double-bassist

March 14 - Ensemble Caprice

March 21 - Sanjukta Banerjee

March 28 - Jazz Duo: Gene Bertoncini and Tom Knific

April 4 - Grand Valley Winds

April 18 - GVSU String Trio

For more information about the individual performances, visit

four members of the quartet

The Perugino Quartet opens the winter semester of Arts at Noon on January 24.


Great Decisions series runs through March

The World Affairs Council of Western Michigan will again host its Great Decisions series, eight presentations by diplomats, policy makers and others, running January 29-March 26.

Grand Valley is an institutional member of the World Affairs Council, so all students, faculty and staff members can attend events for free.

Each weekly event is presented twice: at noon at the Calvin College Recital Hall, in the Covenant Fine Arts Center; and 6 p.m. at the Aquinas College Performing Arts Center. Visit for a schedule and more information.


Reception planned to welcome Burton

The Office of the Provost invites faculty and staff members to a reception to welcome Travus Burton to campus.

Burton was named director of civic learning and community engagement; he began that role in early January.

The reception is set for Tuesday, January 30, from 4:30-6:30 p.m. in the DeVos Center, Hager-Lubbers Exhibition Hall, with remarks at 5:15 p.m. Extra parking will be available in the Seward lot. RSVPs are not necessary; questions can be directed to x12400.

Burton replaces Ruth Stegeman, who retired from the community engagement role in August. He most recently worked as experiential learning coordinator for Oakland University's Office of Student Success and Experiential Learning Center.