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Home Profiles of Students, Staff, Teachers Reading & Writing with Rademacher

Reading & Writing with Rademacher

Sponsored by our friends at Grand Rapids Community College

Fred Reusch: Teacher, Tutor, ‘Coolest Man Ever’

The story you're about to read is about a high school math instructor, written by someone who can barely add single digits. But in the course of professionally observing people and human nature the better part of 40 years, trust...

Chef Mo Nourishes Students with His Expertise;

I am driving home from a morning spent taking notes about the stellar food service program at East Kentwood Public Schools, and you might think my thoughts are revolving around the delicious garbanzo bean salad I ate, or the...

‘Make a Place Better Than When You Got There’

It's not so much that Wyoming High School graduate Mirnes Kukic is bound for Harvard University as it is the personal qualities that surface as you chat to discover that he loves to fish, counts his grandfather as mentor,...

A Very Special Teacher for Special Kids

Some years back on a Fourth of July, schoolteacher Sarah Bolema fielded a phone call from a distraught student's mom. To the mother's horror, her son was acting out his anger by climbing onto a dangerously steep roof and...

Le Tran: Teacher, Artist, Inspirer and Dragon

Le Tran is trying to arrange the start of her AP Art class when three young men bound in, seeking chocolate. Normally, there’d be some available, part of Tran’s stash that she’s peddling to benefit the National Art Honor Society,...

Mr. Bill: From Student to Superintendent, and Everywhere In Between

Godwin Heights Superintendent Bill Fetterhoff gets it.  He knows what it’s like to be a principal, for instance, because he was one. He understands the challenges faced by teachers, because he was one of them, too. And he knows what it’s like...

A Promise Made, a Promise Kept

For more than 150 years, they've been turning out heroic figures at the former Grand Rapids Central High School – now Innovation Central High. But this school season, the bar was raised when a humble soldier limped across Central's threshold...

Overcoming Disability, Student Composes Opus for Orchestra

When the 38 members of the 8th grade string orchestra at East Grand Rapids Middle School sat down to play a new opus recently, it wasn't a selection by Bach or Beethoven or Brahms. The piece was composed by none...

Health Advocate Jean Jilote: ‘Always Smiling, Always Available’

It's not two minutes into our interview, and already health advocate Jean Jilote is shedding tears. It's not that she's suffered some recent loss or experienced pain or trauma. She's just so in love with her kids that the thought of...

Universal Forest Products Engineer John Kozal Mentors GRPS Students

When people who know John Kozal consider the touchstones of his life so far, these are the elements that rise to the surface: Driven by faith, loving father, dedicated dad, conscientious worker, long-time relationship with the Boy Scouts of...

Tireless Go-getter Makes Her Community a Better Place; Dreams of a Brighter Tomorrow

Maria Aguirre likes to help other people's dreams come true: making sure a child has presents wrapped under the tree on Christmas morning, doing her part to fund cancer research, helping distribute grants to organizations doing good in her...

Athlete, Academic, White House Advisor: Leighton Watson

Ladies and gentlemen, keep your eyes on this young man. I’ve been wrong before, but something tells me the name “Leighton Watson” will surface down the road in more ways than one, and possibly in a manner that eventually makes...

Shiza Shahid: Empowering Girls & Women Around the Planet

"What is it," she asked, almost in a whisper, "that you plan to do with your wild and miraculous life?" And in that moment, you could almost glean flickers of light emanating from the members of her young audience, more...

Giving ‘Til It Helps: Tough Upbringing Inspires a Life Devoted to Serving Children, Families

John Matias was late for our interview, but something told me to hang in there. I'm glad I did. "I'm sorry, I apologize," he said, after breaking through the door of Wealthy Street Bakery, where I sat with a cold...

Can’t Keep A Can-do Man Down

It took the better part of four years for Mike Alanowski to get his foot in the door as a full-time employee in the facilities department at Kent ISD. And now that he's entrenched, it's doubtful anyone will ever be...

Runnin’ Rebels Encourages Teamwork and Camaraderie

Forget everything you've ever read or heard about the so-called "loneliness of the long-distance runner." At Lee High School, you'll find a unique running club in full swing, an after-school fitness party where students and staff are invited to come...
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