Recent GCU graduates (from left) Andrew Kretzmann, Ellie Evans, Allison Bauer, Hillary Olsker, Shauna Edwards, Kelsi Thomas, James Prigge, Jessica Ament, Brittney Spackman and Tyler Troth put their Lopes Up at the Peoria site, where their roles range from enrollment counselors to IT desktop support.
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Hiring uptick helps GCU grads chart career paths

May 20, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

After hiring 67 of its own graduates in 2014, Grand Canyon University so far this year has hired 28 others for entry-level positions that help them chart meaningful career paths and earn master’s degrees. GCU Today has a story about how students are using those opportunities to their advantage, and how some love their gigs so much, they may never stop working for their alma mater.

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Online education fueling student’s IndyCar dream

May 19, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

GCU online student T.J. Fischer might be the perfect example of the type of student the University’s online program is designed for. Fischer grew up racing go-karts in Vacaville, Calif., and earned a spot in one of the United Kingdom’s tops open-wheel Mazda Car circuits last March after tearing up California tracks. The move to the UK forced him to choose between a traditional education at Pacific Lutheran University or racing. He found GCU through a friend and used the flexibility of online learning to climb the ladder and join the 2015 Renault series across Europe this year. Read more about Fischer’s racing career in this GCU Today story.

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GCU dancers perform for sixth graders at St. Francis Xavier Elementary in Phoenix.
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GCU dance piece all adds up for young students

May 04, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

Story by Janie Magruder Photos by Tyler McDonald GCU News Bureau Every time Khaila Matthews stepped onto a gym floor in a local school this spring to perform with other Grand Canyon University dance students, the emotional seesaw of her own adolescence teetered in her memory. The GCU sophomore wondered whether she and the dozens of sixth-graders seated cross-legged in front of her had more in common than they might imagine. “I was bullied at their age,” Matthews said recently after the final performance of the College of Fine Arts and Production’s Elementary and Middle School Dance Tour. “I had darker skin, a fuller figure, I was really different. Now, being able to go to these schools and show these kids that there’s nothing wrong with being different, it makes me feel really good.” The GCU sophomore was among 16 students who spent the fall and spring semesters conceptualizing, writing and choreographing the Dance Department’s fourth annual tour. Through the school visits, COFAP aims to spark young audience members’ impulse for self-expression by offering creative tools that will help them explore drama, music and, in this case, drama. The culmination of the dance students’ efforts was being able to perform […]

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Lopes Leap to Teach links students with schools aiming to hire

May 01, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

Grand Canyon University hosted the third and final Lopes Leap to Teach job fair on Thursday. The event drew dozens of dozens of job-hunting students and school officials dealing with Arizona’s statewide teacher shortage.

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Dr. Michael Baird says he gets as much out of teaching as his students so clearly have gotten from him. (Photo by Tyler McDonald)
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Retiring COT ‘pillar’ helped students learn — and live

April 30, 2015 / by / 6 Comments

The longest-tenured employee at Grand Canyon University, Dr. Michael Baird of the College of Theology, is retiring after 36 years, and he will leave behind a long list of grateful students and fellow faculty members. Baird was so good at his job for a simple reason — he loves to teach.

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There were plenty of diplomas awarded at this morning commencement for non-traditional students in the Colangelo College of Business and the College of Doctoral Studies in GCU Arena. (Photo by Darryl Webb)
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Commencement Day 2: Clouds can’t dampen mood

April 24, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

By GCU News Bureau In the cool, crisp minutes before Friday’s commencement at Grand Canyon University, Dr. Michael Berger joked that he’d seen a range of reactions to the suddenly stormy and briefly rainy skies. The locals were the ones bundled up under sweaters and jackets. Out-of-towners didn’t seem to feel the chill in the 60-something-degree air. Still, the rain was minimal, the puddles puny, and anyone unfamiliar with April in the Valley of the Sun had to marvel at how the crystal-clear weather blended with the ceremony message about new opportunities and wide-open futures for GCU’s 560 morning graduates. Their degrees were conferred in the Colangelo College of Business and the College of Doctoral Studies, and most completed their degrees entirely online. Berger, dean of GCU’s College of Doctoral Studies, is a concierge and guest-greeter each year at commencement, actively intercepting anyone he can to route them to tickets, entrances, restrooms or whatever they might need before he has to “step away and do the dean thing” with other University leaders at the ceremony. He is one of hundreds of GCU volunteers who make commencement a warm and inviting atmosphere for locals and visitors alike. Spotting the College of Doctoral Studies regalia in the crowd, Berger introduced himself to learners whom he might have known […]

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Colorful mortarboards have become a GCU commencement tradition. (Photo by Darryl Webb)
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Commencement offers poignant tribute amid pomp

April 23, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

By GCU News Bureau Thursday morning’s commencement, the first of six to be held this week for the Grand Canyon University’s Class of 2015 in the Arena, had all the usual pomp — grinning parents using cellphones and Canons, elaborately decorated mortarboards balanced on graduates’ heads and purple in every corner of the Arena, on flowers, stoles and drapes. (Click here to see a slideshow.) But the 80-minute ceremony attended by 528 undergraduates in five colleges — Theology, Fine Arts and Production, Education, Humanities and Social Sciences and Science, Engineering and Technology — also was punctuated by poignant circumstances. For one, several graduates in the first CSET class adorned their mortarboards in ways unique to their career paths, such as outlines of bodies and crime scene tape. And there was not one but two student speakers, identical twin sisters Joy and Claire Flatz, who earned degrees in theatre from the College of Fine Arts and Production. The duo, who are as close to America’s sweethearts as you can get, did a lovely tag-team bit about how the University’s campus has changed in four years. (Then: no lines, no Chick-fil-A and the worst parking spot was behind Hegel Hall next to […]

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A year to remember: GCU’s Top 10 stories of 2014-15

April 22, 2015 / by / 1 Comment

GCU Today Magazine  Photos by Darryl Webb There was no shortage of news at Grand Canyon University during the 2014-15 academic year. And it was no easy decision picking the Top 10 stories from the dozens that were produced by GCU Today. But those that emphasized community, growth and reputation quickly rose to the top. Here they are: 1. GCU revs economic engine in west Phoenix The University announced a five-point plan to revitalize the neighborhood, continued expanding its campus along the Canyon Corridor, agreed to operate and began renovating Maryvale Golf Course, and opened a hotel to train students in hospitality management and employ local residents. A study credited GCU with an annual economic impact of $1.1 billion that generates 10,490 jobs, with wages approaching $500 million per year. 2. What’s in a name? A lot, when it’s Colangelo GCU’s business school was renamed for Phoenix icon Jerry Colangelo, whose principles of servant leadership, ethics and entrepreneurship became as ingrained into campus life as he did in just a few short months. As part of the hospitality curriculum, the college also announced plans for golf course and tennis management programs. 3. It’s full STEM ahead as 8th college opens Determined to fill high-tech […]

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Brain gain: Growing tutor program reaches more students than ever

April 22, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

By Janie Magruder GCU Today Magazine As a student at Canby High in northwestern Oregon, Bryce Beatty filled his days with chemistry, honors biology, advanced placement physics and playing shortstop for the baseball team. But when he came to Grand Canyon University in 2012, Beatty traded his mitt and jersey for latex gloves and an apron. For the then freshman, focusing on his major — biology with an emphasis in pre-med — required protection for his hands and clothing in GCU’s cadaver lab. Despite his considerable high school science background, Beatty knew he would need some help in chemistry as he pursued a career in spine surgery. As soon as he arrived on campus, he requested tutoring help from the Center for Learning & Advancement (CLA). Now a junior in the College of Science, Engineering and Technology, Beatty is one of GCU’s top science tutors. He helped inspire University leaders to restructure the tutoring system and is assisting with its success. There’s extra credit, of course: “If you can teach it, you know it,” he said. Narrowing the focus Tutoring has evolved over the past 18 months during a perfect storm of change at GCU. The administration wanted to boost […]

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Dr. Cheryl Roat is retiring after 27 years as a leader in the College of Nursing and Health Care Professions. Her last day is Friday.
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CONHCP’s ‘most dedicated person’ retiring

April 22, 2015 / by / 8 Comments

Folks in the College of Nursing and Health Care Professions have grown accustomed to Dr. Cheryl Roat’s smiling face, open door, sage advice and institutional knowledge. But after 27 years of helping bring GCU’s nursing college to prominence and nurturing its faculty, staff and students, Roat is retiring this week. GCU Today has a story about the many contributions of this regular fixture in the CONHCP and how she will be missed.

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