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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15CPA0019 - GCU Today May Top 10
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A year to remember: GCU’s Top 10 stories of 2014-15

April 22, 2015 / by / 0 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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GCU alums minister to needs of Ugandans during medical mission trip

April 22, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

GCU Today Magazine A group of health care professionals who studied together at Grand Canyon University before going to medical school traveled to western Uganda last year to bring medical care and God’s love to people for whom modern necessities are scarce. Among them were Dr. David Engstrom and his wife, Jamie, a physician’s assistant, who operate Pinnacle Family Medicine in Litchfield Park, Drs. Nicole and Brent Nedella, Courtney Mitchell and Stephanie Bradley, all GCU alumni. (Photos courtesy of the Nedella family)

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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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Skills learned at GCU helped alumna’s business prosper

April 22, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

Story and photo by Paige Gruner Office of Alumni Relations GCU Today Magazine Natalie Speers, founder of Social Ally, a social media and branding agency based in Scottsdale, Ariz., has long been an early adapter. As Facebook, Twitter and Instagram were reshaping human connections, she was helping shape social media as a communication tool for clients. When she first started out, Speers worked for an event and entertainment company, promoting events in the Phoenix area and getting paid based on the number of people in attendance. At the time, Myspace was popular. Speers took advantage of marketing to its large audience by building a database. She taught herself HTML code and created a promotional Myspace page where people could RSVP for the events, then get in for free. At those events, Speers invited paying guests to sign up through Myspace for future events in exchange for providing their contact information. She added the phone numbers and email addresses to her database and eventually developed a list of more than 10 million people, she said. Speers’ boss noticed her efforts and created a department for her called “New Media.” The Grand Canyon University alumna then launched a social media business with […]

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Spotlight on Catherine Brubaker, Class of 2007

April 22, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

By Paige Gruner Office of Alumni Relations GCU Today Magazine Catherine Brubaker is a two-time traumatic brain-injury survivor who has taken life by the handlebars. In 2010, Brubaker was assaulted, leaving her with a brain injury that also affected her heart, necessitating a pacemaker. Upon being discharged from the hospital, she was involved in a head-on collision and sustained a second injury to her brain. Three years after her accident, Brubaker was determined to take her life back. She purchased a recumbent tricycle and met Dan Zimmerman, a stroke survivor who was riding the same model. They realized they were riding for the same purpose — freedom. Zimmerman gave Brubaker his card, and on the back was a U.S. map with a red line from Anacortes, Wash., to Key West, Fla. Zimmerman was doing a cross-country bike ride to raise hope and awareness about cycling’s ability to help brain-injury survivors recover and regain their strength. Brubaker, of Tempe, Ariz., later called Zimmerman. She said, “I’m in. I want to do this ride.” She had six weeks to train and raise $10,000, which she accomplished with Zimmerman’s help and that of the community. Along with four other cyclists, Brubaker completed the […]

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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 / 7 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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The Ethington Dance Ensemble will present its second major concert of the year, "Ballet to Broadway: And Everything in Between," Friday and Saturday on campus. (Photo by Darryl Webb)
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GCU dance students step up variety in spring show

April 15, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

As the title suggests, there will be something for everyone at the GCU Ethington Dance Ensemble’s spring concert, “Ballet to Broadway: And Everything in Between,” this weekend. A variety of works, choreographed and performed by faculty and students, will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday in Ethington Theatre. GCU Today has a story with ticket info.

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The Scruggs twins and Saleem earned $11,000 in two prizes for their business idea, Joblyt.
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Joblyt gets job done, wins Canyon Challenge

March 25, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

Story by Janie Magruder Photos by Darryl Webb GCU News Bureau In the best sense of the word, Brad Scruggs, Ahmad Saleem and Brian Scruggs are taskmasters. The recent biology graduates of Grand Canyon University put medical school on hold six months ago to jump aboard an international phenomena fueled by the popularity of Uber, the mobile-app-based transportation service. They created a software application that matches people who need tasks done sooner rather than later with people who have the know-how, desire and time — now — to do them and launched Joblyt. The young entrepreneurs needed funding, and they got it Tuesday when the judges selected Joblyt the grand prize winner of the 2015 GCU Canyon Challenge, which was hosted by the Colangelo College of Business before an estimated crowd of 400 in GCU Arena. The Scruggs brothers and Saleem, instructional assistants in the College of Science, Engineering and Technology, received a $7,000 check for first place plus $4,000 more for nabbing 49 percent of the votes in a 20-hour texting campaign drawing nearly 5,200 voters. That’s 11 grand that goes, you guessed it, back into the business. “You can’t patent an idea,” Brian Scruggs said of a concept that […]

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Career Services: Finding the right career

March 20, 2015 / by / 0 Comment

By Aysha Bell GCU Career Services Every individual possesses skills, gifts and abilities, and it’s important to discover what career is the best fit for those interests and values in order to increase the likelihood of professional success. The adage of ‘do what you love and you will never work a day in your life’ is a possibility. Grand Canyon University’s Career Services Office is committed to helping alumni and students find or rediscover their passion and transition into a purposeful career. Through the use of electronic resources and one-on-one advising, the Career Services team can guide alumni and students toward viable career options. One recommended tool is the Career Compass which requires individuals to answer a series of questions and then measures those preferences to build a professional summary with suggested career paths.  Also offered is a resource called Bridgemycareer which allows users to build profiles and match to employers based on common interests and values. Alumni, current and prospective students are encouraged to take advantage of the resources offered through GCU. Professionals typically spend approximately 20 to 40 years of their adult life working, and so it’s important to make sure those years are spent doing enjoyable activities. […]

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