Brian Mueller

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First cohort makes L.E.A.P. to teacher certification

July 14, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

Scott Wade was a lawyer but fell in love with teaching four years ago and is in the classroom under an emergency certification. Lisa Baird has taught off and on for 20 years, also without being certified. They are among the first 14 teacher candidates who graduated recently from the Canyon L.E.A.P. to Teach program, which offers an alternative pathway to licensure during a time of severe teacher shortage. “The ultimate goal is to get more certified teachers into Arizona classrooms,” said Carol Lippert, Executive Director of K12 Outreach and Education Program Development.

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GCU students earn 100% NCLEX first-time pass rate

May 18, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

When the state closed its test-taking sites for the National Council Licensure Examination during the COVID-19 lockdowns, GCU’s nursing students were worried. They were worried, too, that once those sites opened back up that they might not be as prepared as they could have been to take the test, which they must pass to begin working in the field. Still, GCU’s nursing students in the first quarter of 2021 scored a 100% first-time pass rate on the exam, thanks to the College of Nursing and Health Care Professions faculty who found answers when COVID presented roadblock after roadblock. Said Dean Dr. Lisa Smith, “We’re going to do everything we can to support our students until they cap.”

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GCU, CityServe creating major distribution HUB

May 10, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

  (May 10, 2021) – Grand Canyon University and CityServe are partnering to create a major distribution HUB on the GCU campus that will provide thousands of household goods to needy families in Arizona. GCU is creating a 35,000-square-foot warehouse on campus that will house products such as clothing, heaters, fans, blankets, furniture, mattresses, food boxes and other essential items provided by major retailers through CityServe. The GCU HUB – powered mostly by volunteers – will provide the items to PODs, or points of distribution, such as churches, schools and social service organizations that will then distribute them directly to families in need. GCU has already identified 40 community partners that will serve as PODs and plans to connect to more than 100 eventually. “This partnership with CityServe is a natural extension of our broader outreach efforts and our five-point plan to transform our surrounding community,” GCU President Brian Mueller said. “CityServe is making a significant impact across the country by empowering local churches and service organizations to live out the Gospel of Jesus Christ and help those in need. Their mission aligns perfectly with GCU and we look forward to not only partnering with them to provide essential household […]

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Genung-Koch a finalist for Dance Coach of the Year

May 06, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

Jacque Genung-Koch grew up in basketball gyms and, as the daughter and granddaughter of teachers and coaches, she didn’t see herself following the same path for her career. Twenty-one years later and Genung-Koch has had an impressive run as a dance coach, eight of those years at GCU, where the Dance team recently brought home another national title. She is a finalist for the National Dance Coaches Association College Coach of the Year. “You do it because you love it and because you love the kids and you love the progress … You have to really choose it with your heart,” she said.

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Rescue Mission alums receive GCU scholarships

April 15, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

There was no shortage of inspirational redemption stories at Wednesday’s Phoenix Rescue Mission Signing Event as three of four scholarship recipients signed their letter of intent to attend the University in the fall. The recipients, who have completed the nonprofit’s Recovery Program, include Amanda Jaramillo, Jacqueline Mix, Brian Farretta and GCU 2019 alum Jesse Dalla Riva. “These people have had some significant challenges and they’ve taken the first step now, they’ve gone through the Phoenix Rescue Mission Program, they’ve come out of it successfully and they’ve started their new life,” said GCU President Brian Mueller. “For us to be able to offer them this opportunity to take their life now to a whole new level is a blessing.”

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GCU, CityServe feed spirit, families on Good Friday

April 02, 2021 / by / 1 Comment

When community partner CityServe called to see if GCU could distribute two truckloads of Farmers to Families Food Boxes on Good Friday, “I knew there was only one answer to give. I mean, you don’t say no. This is your opportunity to say yes,” said Community Relations Director Debbie Accomazzo. The University rallied and found homes for approximately 2,300 boxes of food, just in time for Easter weekend.

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Symposium/Showcase shows range of research

March 29, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

From natural deodorant to COVID-19 research, there was no shortage of impressive student presentations at this year’s CSET Research Symposium and Honors Showcase on Saturday. Honors finalists delivered in-person presentations while CSET finalists presented orally via Zoom. “It just goes to show how active and engaged our students were both inside and outside the classroom this year despite COVID-19 and limitations on what they could and couldn’t do,” Honors College Associate Dean Dr. Breanna Naegeli said.

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Virtual celebration homes in on fun for everyone

February 26, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

The pandemic wasn’t going to keep the GCU community from celebrating alumni, students and their families. That determined spirit was the catalyst for this year’s virtual Homecoming and Family Week. For the first time, the two events have been combined to bring together everyone in the GCU community for a week filled with tours, livestreams, watch parties and access to GCU archives.

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GCU helps school districts fight food insecurity

February 25, 2021 / by / 0 Comment

Patti Bilbrey, Director of Nutrition Services for the Scottsdale Unified School District, was looking for a way to honor her mentor, Dave Schwake, who passed away earlier this month from COVID-19 complications. Schwake tirelessly fought food insecurity as the Food Service Director for the Litchfield Elementary School District and as a volunteer for several nonprofit organizations. She found that opportunity to carry on his legacy with the Farmers to Families Food Box Program. Her district is one of several school districts who received boxes Wednesday in the latest round of food box distributions.

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COVID-19 couldn’t stop GCU’s mission in community

February 16, 2021 / by / 2 Comments

COVID-19 may have disrupted so many things — everything, really — but it couldn’t stop the GCU community from finding ways to help its neighbors. From establishing new partnerships, such as with CityServe International in the USDA Farmers to Families food box distributions, to strengthening existing partnerships with such groups as Chicanos por la Causa, GCU has become an even more integral part of the community. “It’s a more intimate relationship that we have with the community,” said Community Relations Manager Debbie Accomazzo. “We’re all coming from the same place of vulnerability, and, because of that, we all have the same risks and many of the same things at stake. So I think we’re sharing that vulnerability in new ways.” Reprinted from the February 2021 issue of GCU Magazine.

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