Friday, January 8, 2010

Find Out More About Ferris State University And Its Family Connection

BIG RAPIDS - Ferris State University is more than just a bunch of buildings, parking lots and classrooms.

A significant part of what makes Ferris great is the people who have built and maintained this University during the last 125 years. People and families built Ferris (beginning with our founders Woodbridge Ferris and his wife Helen Gillespie Ferris) and have worked hard to maintain this institution. The passion that started Ferris 125 years ago continues today with so many wonder families that continue to make Ferris a special place from generation to generation.

Families choose Ferris because they trust Ferris.

Find out more about the Ferris Family Connection.

Here is a small taste in the form of an introduction from President Eisler:

We are delighted to have your student and you join the Ferris family. I remember many of the questions Patsy and I had when our children were beginning college. To help answer your questions, we offer a special e-mail newsletter for you, parents of our Ferris State University freshmen.

A Ferris education can change your student's life, creating lifelong opportunities. Certainly a college education is one of the greatest single investments a family will make in their student's future. We invite you to join our team of parents and Ferris professionals to make sure your student has the best possible university experience.

We'd like you to talk to us, as well. Please fill out our survey to let us know your interests.

Welcome to the Ferris family!

David L. Eisler, President

Orlando Wine Tasting Event

The Ferris State University Alumni Association invites you to join us at the Funky Monkey Wine Company on Thursday, Jan. 28, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. for a wine tasting event.

The evening will include tasting a selection of two reds, two whites, one sparkling and one dessert wine, along with fabulous appetizers and wine tour featuring expert information and a Q&A session with the sommelier.

The cost is $25 per person.

Please RSVP by Jan. 21 to the Alumni Office by calling at (888) 378-3647 or e-mailing

Follow this link for more information and to register by credit card:

Graduation Ceremony 2009 In Focus

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Basketball Bonanza Promises Hardwood Excitement

BIG RAPIDS - Expect an all-you-can-handle buffet of college and prep basketball on Jan. 9 in Jim Wink Arena on the Ferris State University campus.

The FSU Athletics Department has put together a quadruple-header of basketball action that features men's and women's college games between Ferris and Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference rival Saginaw Valley State University and boys and girls prep games featuring local Mecosta County rivals Big Rapids High School and Chippewa Hills High School. The action begins at 1 p.m. with the Cardinals and Chippewas facing off in the prep girls game. At 3 p.m. the Ferris women are in action against SVSU and the men's game tips off at 5 p.m. between the Bulldogs and Saginaw Valley. At 7 p.m., the action concludes with a boys prep showdown between Chippewa Hills and Big Rapids.

The four games will be a great opportunity for all of Mecosta County to come together and experience prep and college basketball action on one day in one venue. The games originally were scheduled to be played at Chippewa Hills High School, on the east side of Mecosta County, but have been moved to Ferris to help make this event a success.

"We're excited to team up with Chippewa Hills High School to bring the community a full day of entertaining basketball," Ferris Associate Athletics Director Jon Coles (pictured) said. "Any time we can use athletics to bring the community and surrounding areas onto campus, it's a positive for the institution.

"The FSU Athletics Department has worked hard to build the bridge with the community and I believe these types of events only strengthen that relationship," he added.

Here is the schedule for the Basketball Bonanza:

1 p.m. - High School Girls: Big Rapids vs. Chippewa Hills
3 p.m. - College Women: FSU vs. Saginaw Valley State
5 p.m. - College Men: FSU vs. Saginaw Valley State
7 p.m. - High School Boys: Big Rapids vs. Chippewa Hills

For more information, check out the official press release from Ferris Athletics Communications:

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Ferris In The News

Growing community colleges need leadership; Ferris aims to fill need with doctoral program

Community college enrollment is hitting record levels in Grand Rapids and elsewhere, and Ferris State University leaders say there’s a growing need for people to lead those schools as they grow, the Grand Rapids Press reports. Ferris trustees approved creating a doctoral program for community college administrators, planning to focus on the special needs at two-year institutions. “We’re seeing a real explosion in the number of community college students,” said Fritz Erickson, Ferris’ provost and vice president for Academic Affairs. “The reality is that the road out of our economic problems in our state and country is going to be education, and we’re going to need more people to run these institutions.” Experts say such programs are growing in number. The University of Michigan is the only other state university with a community college program, but it focuses on research instead of administration. George Boggs, president of the American Association of Community Colleges, consulted with Ferris staff members as they designed the course. Read more at

West Michigan’s three largest universities offer health benefits to employees’ unmarried partners

With Ferris State University adopting the measure last year, west Michigan’s three largest universities soon will offer health insurance benefits to unmarried partners of employees. The Ferris Board of Trustees voted unanimously to approve a letter of agreement with its faculty association, its largest union, in December, reports the Grand Rapids Press. The board also allowed the administration to enter into similar agreements with other employee unions if requested. The policy also applies to administrative staff as of Jan. 1. The benefit is provided regardless of the partner’s gender who will be classified as “Other Eligible Adult.” Last year, Grand Valley State University extended benefits to unmarried couples. In January 2009, Western Michigan University began a three-year pilot program. Jim Rumpf, president of the Ferris Faculty Association, said the benefit was important to members and had been discussed the better part of 2009. The group has 450 full-time members, plus adjunct faculty. Read more at

Borth Receives Dorothy Beardmore Service to Education Award

David Borth, chair of the Network of Michigan Educators, has been presented with the State Board of Education’s Dorothy Beardmore Service to Education Award. Borth, of Big Rapids, also is the director of the Hawthorn Learning Center, adjunct professor at Ferris State University, and former administrator for Big Rapids Public Schools, Newswire reports. The award is named after the late Dorothy Beardmore, past president and member of the State Board of Education from 1985-2001. It is given to the person whose efforts on behalf of education and education reform are deemed to be of outstanding benefit to the quality of education for all Michigan students. “David has spent a lifetime volunteering, is an outstanding Big Rapids community member who is well respected and continues through his service to make a great impact on education for the children, youth, and families of Big Rapids and Mecosta and Osceola Counties,” said State Board of Education President Kathleen N. Straus. State Superintendent of Public Instruction Mike Flanagan expressed thanks to Borth for his work with the Network of Michigan Educators. “David provides great leadership to this collection of the elite educators in the state,” Flanagan said. “We count on his experience and input when discussing education policy in Michigan.” Read more at,1607,7-136-3452-229058--,00.html.

Monday, January 4, 2010

HAPPY BIRTHDAY: Elvis' 75th Birthday Bash!

BIG RAPIDS - If you're around Ferris State University and you're a big fan of Elvis Presley then this week has an event you probably will not want to miss.

To celebrate Elvis' 75th birthday, the Michigan Elvis Presley Fan Club is bringing internationally competing Elvis tribute artist, Jake Slater, to Big Rapids on Jan. 8. Show is 7 to 9 p.m. in Monahan Hall at the Gate for $10; dinner available 6 to 7 p.m. for additional $10 (which includes soft drink, tax, gratuity and dessert).

Join us for a great evening of Elvis music and to celebrate the King. Tickets available at the Gate (231) 796-3808 or through the fan club (231) 796-4467.

Buy tickets online:

More specifics:

Date: Friday, Jan. 8
Time: 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Location: The Gate in Big Rapids
Contact: Jennifer Thede
Group/Organization: The Michigan Elvis Presley Fan Club

Telephone: (231) 796-4467

Learn About The History Of Big Rapids

BIG RAPIDS - Ferris State University and Big Rapids have a long relationship that dates back to the founding of the University in 1884.

This academic year Ferris is celebrating its 125th birthday in part through reflecting upon the rich history of the institution as founded by Woodbridge N. Ferris.

We've learned a lot about the history of Ferris, but this video sheds some light on the history of Big Rapids.