“Getting to Work”

The Center for Michigan recently published a report entitled, “Getting to Work: The Public’s Agenda for Improving Career Navigation, College Affordability, and Upward Mobility in Michigan.” The data reported were collected from more than 5,000 Michigan participants via direct phone, online and focus groups surveys. This report outlines Michigan’s clear priorities for improving in these critical areas tied to Michigan’s future success.

The report provides the “To-Do List: Five Public Priorities” as:

  1. “Greatly improve career counseling and college advising in Michigan High Schools”
  2. Make college more affordable
  3. Decrease student loan debt loads
  4. Intensify hands-on training and work experience for youth
  5. Intensify retraining and continuing education for adults” (Page 2)

Each of these priorities are a result of the vetting via the surveys. These public opinions are strong where the need for improvement in Michigan is concerned for students in regards to career decision making and options for affordability training in K-12 and higher education.

The report has many data points which reveal a clear picture of what Michigan citizens believe. Examples of these data are listed below:

    Public Support Level: College Affordability

  • Higher State Funding for College/Universities – 85%
  • Intensified Campus Effectiveness – 88%
  • Expand Dual Enrollment – 86%
  • Public Support Levels: Upward Mobility Solutions

  • Expand Apprenticeships – 91%
  • Expand Basic Skills Training – 87%
  • Expand Paid Internships – 81%
  • What is your impression of career and college counseling in Michigan High Schools today?

  • Excellent – 5%
  • Good – 35%
  • Lousy or terrible – 46-47% (page 4)
  • What is the most common challenge to completing college?

  • High Costs – 53% (page 8)
  • Which issues concerning college affordability are most concerning?

  • Rising Cost of College Tuition – 33%
  • Rising Student Debt – 34% (page 8)
  • The State Government should fund public college and initiatives at high levels to make college more affordable:

  • Strongly Agree – 57%
  • Somewhat Agree – 29% (Page 9)
  • Should Michigan encourage more students to earn credits while in high school?

  • Yes – 86% (Page 10)
  • Support for intensive job/skills training for those disconnected from the job market?

  • Yes – 87% (Page 14)
  • Support for paid summer internships for youth?

  • Yes – 81% (Page 15)

These are just a few of the many data sets the report contains. Taken as a whole, these data support the need for Michigan to be more aggressive in at least three key areas to move the needle. These three are “affordability of college,” “state support of college increased,” and “increase upward mobility for Michigan workers.”

Glen Oaks Community College is the most cost effective, geographically advantaged, and student-centered institution in the St. Joseph County region. The college provides educational opportunities for all citizens to garner greater occupational skills, preparation for successful transfer to four-year institutions, and social and cultural development. The college’s efforts to provide college credit to the region’s high school students in both transfer and Career/Technical Education (CTE) is seen as a model for the State.

The overarching support the college receives from the local tax payer and state makes the college affordable and the geography serves the St. Joseph County populous effectively. The college is here to serve in ever greater ways in direct response to the “Getting to Work” challenge presented by The Center for Michigan.

(The above report can be viewed at:

Glen Oaks practical nursing exam pass rate ranks first in nation

Glen Oaks Community College practical nursing graduates are passing the NCLEX-PN (National Council for Licensing Exam – Practical Nursing) at a rate that is the highest in the nation, according to The Mountain Measurement firm, an assessment firm that serves the K-12, licensure and certification sectors of the testing industry.

“Out of all the first-year Practical Nursing programs in our jurisdiction (9 of 22 reporting), Glen Oaks graduates had a 100 percent pass rate and ranked first out of 18 schools in our jurisdiction,” said Bill Lederman, director of the nursing program at the college. “Out of all programs across every jurisdiction, Glen Oaks ranked No. 1 out of 935 schools. Our graduates had a 100 percent passing rate.”

And that’s not all – Glen Oaks second-year registered nursing students’ pass rate on the NCLEX-RN was also quite remarkable. “Out of all the second-year graduates in our jurisdiction (38 out of 58 reporting), Glen Oaks graduates had a 92 percent pass rate versus 85 percent in our jurisdiction,” said Lederman. “Nationally (1235 of 1904 reporting), the pass rate was 83 percent, so our students have exceeded the national pass rate here as well.”

“Our nursing faculty is very committed to the success of our students,” said Dr. David H. Devier, Glen Oaks president in talking about the program’s success. “This news is a credit to them and their hard work and dedication. Admission to our Nursing program is extremely competitive. We typically graduate around 60 students annually from the Practical Nursing Certificate program and the Associate in Applied Science Nursing programs.”

The Mountain Measurement firm compares all Practical Nursing and Registered Nursing programs in the United States and its territories. The report information is based on NCLEX data pass rates between April 2015 and September 2015.

College plants 50th Anniversary Time Capsule to be opened June 14, 2065

Faculty and staff gathered together in early December for a final event to cap off the 50th Anniversary Celebration with a cookout and to bury a time capsule to put closure on the 50th celebratory events.

The College’s Maintenance Department constructed a time capsule out of PVC piping. The time capsule contained copies of the 50th Anniversary publication, 2015 Annual Report, invitations to “Summer Kickoff,” the Foundation’s first annual gala, copies of media releases and media coverage surrounding anniversary activities, a thumb drive containing a copy of “Early Beginnings” the video commemorating the anniversary, and another with photos from the activities along with general college publications such as the Admissions Viewbook, Programs of Study, Tuition and Fees brochure, etc.

The time capsule is buried in the new brick flag plaza in front of the college and is bricked with the text: To be opened June 14, 2016 – 100 years from the original date from when the citizens of St. Joseph County passed a millage to support the college.

Glen Oaks is on Flicker

You can now view photos from many of the college’s 50th Anniversary Celebratory activities by checking out the Glen Oaks Community College page on Flicker.

To view posted photos, go to, search: Glen Oaks Community College, go to the People tab; and then go to Albums tab.

Included are photos from the 50th Flippin’ Flapjack Kickoff, Athletic Hall of Fame, Variety Show, Nursing Alumni Reunion, Summer Kickoff – June 13, the Summer Parades and the Foundation Gala.

Meijer donates to OSS program

A special thank you to Meijer this holiday season for donating $250 to the college’s Occupational Student Success program. From left are Glen Oaks’ Karen Webber accepting gift cards from Paula Nielson, administrative assistant at the Three Rivers Meijer Store.

View Glen Oaks Criminal Justice promo at a theatre near you

Glen Oaks is rolling out a 30-second Criminal Justice promotional video which is being shown at both the Three Rivers Six and Sturgis Strand theatres through the holiday season. A two-minute Criminal Justice promotional video will also be uploaded to the college’s website.

Featured in the videos are Mike White, GOCC CJ instructor, and Criminal Justice students Amy Bontrager and Mike McCuaig.

You can view the Glen Oaks CJ promo by visiting, and clicking on the YouTube channel on the home page and going to: CJ Spot for Theatres – 30 seconds.

Professors Lederman and Reed receive emeriti status

Congratulations to two Glen Oaks professors who recently received Professor Emeriti status — Janell Lederman, professor of nursing and Jeanne Reed, sociology professor. Lederman has been with the college since 1985, while Reed has been employed since 1993. Reed also served as the coordinator of the Glen Oaks Study Abroad program.

LED lights equal rebate for GOCC

Consumer Energy’s Kevin Lenders, right, presented Glen Oaks President Dr. David Devier with a $3100 rebate check yesterday as part of program recognizing customers for using energy efficient products. The college maintenance department recently replaced all the 750 watt lights in the parking lot with 125 watt LED lights. The college also expects a substantial savings in its electric bill as a result of this project.

Glen Oaks to offer classes in MFR and EMT

In response to requests from the community, Glen Oaks is partnering with Michiana Healthcare to bring Medical First Responder and Emergency Medical Technician courses to campus.

Registration for Winter is now in progress

Glen Oaks Community College is registering now for Winter, 2016 classes. Now is the time to meet with an advisor to determine your schedule so that you have time to complete testing and orientation.

Holiday Hours

Glen Oaks Community College will be closed for the holiday December 23, 2015 through January 1, 2016.

50th Anniversary Video

Glen Oaks is wrapping up its 50th Anniversary Celebration. If you haven’t yet seen the 50th anniversary video, you can view it on the Glen Oaks YouTube Channel, which can be reached by clicking on the YouTube icon at:, and scrolling down to Early Beginnings.


To see the pdf of this publication, Click Here.