Friday, June 18, 2010

Ferris State University News Headlines

Students looking for an opportunity to make an impact in their community can do so through Ferris State University’s Bachelor of Science in Architecture and Sustainability. The Grand Rapids Press reports on how a new partnership with Habitat for Humanity will allow faculty and students from Ferris to study environmentally-friendly design techniques. This is just one of three stories featured in today’s news excerpts. Read below to see more.

Habitat for Humanity Homes to be ‘Learning Laboratories’

The first net-zero home for Habitat for Humanity of Kent County will not need magic, although it will be designed to result in almost no energy costs, the Grand Rapids Press reports. Kicking off a revitalization project in Wealthy Heights, a neighborhood around Wealthy Street and Visser Place in Grand Rapids, the centerpiece for Habitat for Humanity will be the net-zero house – designed to generate as much energy as it consumes – that will not only provide a home for a family in need, but will give Ferris State University a chance to study what does and does not work in environmentally friendly buildings. Several departments at Ferris, which debuts a new energy degree this fall, will be involved in designing and studying the house. “We’ve constructed very inefficient buildings for many, many years,” said Tom Crandell, director of corporate and professional development at Ferris. “Now is the time to do construction that will last a long time but that will be efficient.”

Ferris Hosts Criminal Justice Camp for High Schoolers

Crime scene investigation, self-defense tactics and firefighter training might seem like an entire college career’s worth of training, reports the Big Rapids Pioneer. However, students at Ferris State University’s Criminal Justice Camp got a taste of all these subjects and more this week. Now in its fourth year, the Criminal Justice Camp aims to teach sophomore- through senior-age high school students about the different aspects of law enforcement. “It’s about informing students about what they’ll be getting into before they make a decision about their prospective career path,” Greg Vander Kooi, Ferris associate professor, Criminal Justice, said. “It helps students get rid of a lot of misperceptions they might have about law enforcement. Vander Kooi said three students who attended the 2009 camp entered the Criminal Justice program at Ferris this year. “It’s been a good experience that has focused on the entire public safety experience,” said Tony Kelley, a Big Rapids High School senior who attends the Mecosta-Osceola Career Center’s Criminal Justice program.

Welding Students Build Pergola for Pocket Park

As part of the downtown Big Rapids streetscape renewal project, Ferris State University Welding Engineering Technology students designed and created a pergola to be installed in the revamped Pocket Park on Michigan Avenue, the Big Rapids Pioneer reports. Dave Murray, Welding Engineering Technology associate professor and pergola project coordinator, said students spent the last year working on the design and fabrication of the pergola. Completing the project is as much about community service as it is about a grade for his students, Murray said. “We want these guys to learn to give back to their communities,” he said. “This project gives them something real to work on; it’s a chance to do something real-world.”

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