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Physical Plant Page Volume 6

Issue 4


May the spirit of God’s love fill your hearts and homes in this beautiful season. May you find many reasons for happiness. Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a magnificent New Year!

Spoelhof Center Addi$on

Much of the iconic architecture on Calvin’s campus is due to William Fyfe’s (college architect 1957-1975) extraordinary vision for the “Knollcrest Campus”. Included in that original vision was a poten$al “sister wing” to the Spoelhof College Center. On November 1st, the Planning and priori$es Commi8ee (PPC) approved the forma$on of a commi8ee to: “analyze the strategic need for a proposed addion on the west side of the Spoelhof College Center, to address the financial feasibility and sustainability of such, and begin planning, design, and implementaon, es-

pecially as it affects other space issues on campus.” Phil Beezhold has been asked to Chair the commi8ee as they work with GMB Architects and Engineers to plan the new building. The commi8ee is expected to present a more fully developed proposal to the PPC and the Board of Trustees by April 1.

office space will be integrated into the addi$on as well. Ini$al renderings have the addi$on placed to the West of the College Center, nestled between the ring road and the Spoelhof Center. The project is expected to be two stories tall with a courtyard between the new building and the exis$ng Spoelhof Center. Due to its loca$on in rela$on to the College Center, the project has been affec$onately nicknamed: “The West Wing”.

The Spoelhof Addi$on is an$cipated to serve the Business Department, Educa$on Department, and Art Department. Other

North Hall Renova$on

Over the past year, the Physical Plant has been refreshing/ remodeling the offices, corridors, and classrooms in North Hall. As part of the renova$ons, the Calvin Business Department Office was given a face liG. With a new recep$on desk, work area, and small kitchene8e, the new office will suit the needs of the users for years to come!

On Friday February 20, 2009 Calvin College celebrated the dedica$on of the brand new SFC. Now, almost three years later, all of the original construc$on related roof & pipe leaks have finally been resolved! Thanks to Calvin Architecture Department, Calvin Mechanical Department, Calvin Building Services, GMB Architects, Christman Construc$on, Great Lakes Roofing and Rite-Way Plumbing for their ongoing help in diagnosing and solving the many complex issues!

Marc Huizinga: Re$rement As many of you may already know, Marc Huizinga, Associate Director of Mechanical Services at the Physical Plant, is going to re$re at the end of January. On behalf of the en$re campus community we can’t thank Marc enough for his 11 years of service!

to the support staff are great people, very friendly, willing to assist in any way they can, and under standing if there was a problem that could not be taken care of right away. The en$re administra$on is very approachable, and willing to discuss issues at hand to resolve facility related problems. The last but the We’ve taken a moment to ask Marc most important thing I liked about a few ques$ons. Below are some of working at Calvin is working in a his responses: Chris$an environment. The people's thought process at Calvin is What are you going to do aer you so different than corporate America. rere? It’s truly enjoyable to work with other Chris$ans. “I will travel with my wife and our parrot (Sugar) in a truck and a 5th What was your greatest obstacle? wheel trailer across the United States. We also want to do some “Lack of funding and lack of man kayaking and take some motorcycle power availability.” trips.” What was your most difficult work What is your funniest memory? order? “A few of the guys love to give me a hard $me. On one occasion I got even. One of the guys, a Harley rider loves wearing leather. So on his birthday, in the break room during coffee, one other staff member and I presented him with a leather thong. Everybody enjoyed the ‘giG’. I believe he has added it to his riding gear “ensemble”.” What do you appreciate the most about working at Calvin? A few of the things I appreciated most about working at Calvin are the people. Everybody from faculty

“My most difficult work order was when President Bush was the guest speaker in the old field house for gradua$on, and the request to install temporary air-condi$oning in what is now the Hoogenboom gym came from President Byker's office. The building was never designed to have air condi$on, but between Calvin's Mech. staff and the contractor supplying the equipment, everything worked very well.” What were the strangest work orders you had to take care of? “1. Can someone from Physical Plant

help us get our expensive camera back????? It is a8ached to several helium balloons and is stuck in the top of a tree in the Commons lawn. 2. Our toilet will not flush, I dropped my cell phone in the it yesterday and that may be the cause. Could someone retrieve it for me?????” Will we be able to contact you? “Once I am re$red, I can be contacted at home. If we are traveling I will have access to email, or a cell phone, “ Will you ever come back to visit? “I will be definitely be coming back to campus to ‘visit’, I will truly miss the people in Physical Plant. “ Any words of wisdom for your successor? The only words of wisdom I would have for my successor would be to work closely and communicate with the staff as they are a highly skilled group. They have a great deal of experience and they possess extensive knowledge of the campus and all of it's systems, whether it be plumbing, electrical, mechanical equipment, HVAC, or energy management. It is very rare when working through a problem of any type, they can't come up with a solu$on to resolve the problem.

Tree a Spruce, not a Fir The below is an excerpt from the “Le8er to the Editor” sec$on of the December 2 issue of the Chimes: Dear Editor, I can clearly understand why Josh De Lacy incorrectly iden$fied the Christmas tree planted in the Commons Lawn as a white fir. It is wrongly labeled on Calvin’s tree inventory website, h8p://gis.calvin/trees/. That tree is in fact a Michigan na$ve white spruce (Piccea glauca). There are 12 white firs on campus, but that is not one of them. The white spruce was hand-selected by me as a result of coopera$on among student senate, student life, biology, and the physical plant. It is a fully na$ve genotype and was locally grown in Caledonia, Mich. Admi8edly, the tree is almost too perfectly shaped, but give it a few decades and it will gain character and will be a great addi$on to campus. It was placed in the same loca$on when a severely declining White Pine was removed. I am always aware of tree placement and the way trees define usable space as well as the masses and voids they create that make our campus func$onal and a8rac$ve. In the future, I’d be pleased to teach any student, faculty or staff the very real differences between spruce, pine and fir trees. Using the contemporary buzzword of sustainability demands proper plant iden$fica$on, especially when it relates to na$ve versus non-na$ve trees. Bob Speelman Landscape Supervisor Grounds Maintenance

Off-Campus Projects

On November 11th, Camp Waltman Lake hosted it’s first group since the Summer/Fall updates.

and relaxing, they also volunteered 4 hours of their Saturday to assist with several projects around the Camp.

A youth group from Beechwood Church in Holland, MI arrived Friday evening. Approximately 15 high school students, lead by Calvin Student Andrew Webster, spend the en$re weekend with friends and leaders. They enjoyed quite $me outside around the lake, hikes through the woods, football and soccer on the field, outdoor fires, and playing cards inside the lodge.

One group focused on leaf clean-up and another on removing brush from around lake. The third group, aided by the camp tractor and trailer, help put the boats and canoes into the horse barn for the winter. And finally, a few students stayed in the lodge to help clean the kitchen with extreme detail!

Not only did the students enjoy much of the weekend ea$ng, playing games

On November 15th we also saw the opening of fire-arm deer season. A few Calvin Staff enjoyed $me in the woods searching for the “big buck”.

The camp is now taking reserva$ons for the 2012 season. The lodge is heated and would make a great Winter retreat. Also, camping sites are available throughout the summer. Please contact Ma8 Hoekzema (x7673) if you or your campus department is interested in reserving $me at Calvin’s own offcampus conference and retreat center! While the name “Camp Waltman Lake” has been used throughout the summer, the “Camp Waltman Lake Commi8ee” has approved the new name:

Waltman Lake Retreat and Learning Center.

Dryland Diving Board This past summer, Physical Plant was approached by Dan Gelderloos (Instructor/Aqua$cs Manager) to build a “Dryland Diving Board”. With funds provided by the Kinesiology Department, Doug Kok, Mechanical Technician, created the plaSorm that holds the diving board. The actual board was saved from the old PE building! The dryland diving board has become a vital ingredient for the Diving Team. OGen $mes the dryland board is used for more than 50% of prac$ce sessions.

Did you know the Grounds Department composts all the leaves collected from Campus at “The Pit” located near the Gainey Fields? The 360 yards of leaves collected this year will be turned into compost for use by the Biology Department.

Advantages of dryland training: 1. Dryland training reduces stress on the body 2. Lack of available pool $me 3. Isola$ng specific skills 4. Prac$ce dives without fear of “smacking” the water

Physical Plant Staff Ou$ng

Physical Plant employees are invited to a8end the annual Christmas lunch and celebra$on! Please bring a $10.00 “White Elephant GiG” to par$cipate in the giG exchange! Loca$on: Woodlawn Ministry Center Date: December 22 Time: 12:00 noon Thanks to Fish Window Cleaning for covering the cost of the meal!

Guest Ar$cle Why Do They Do It? By: Ma8 Adams

Why do they do it? Why do the thousands of professional and trades people work in facili$es? There are almost too many skill required to keep up with. There are architects, engineers, planners accountants, members of every trade, housekeepers, movers, landscapers, human resource managers, planners, storeroom operators, motor pool managers, project managers, and another ten or more skills I can’t even remember. Don’t all these people realize that there will NEVER be enough money for their department and nobody is ever going to get rich quick? Not only that, but most of the $me, their work is not recognized by the very ins$tu$on that they serve. So, then, why do they do it? A Job Well Done Some of our wise grandparents used to say that there are two types of people in the world: there are those that work, contribute, and produce-and then there are those that live off of the produc$on of others. The people that choose to work in our industry are the former. They are the ones that give to the world instead of take from it. For those who work in facili$es departments, there exists an intrinsic desire to do hard work and serve others. This is a drama$c dis$nc$on from others that are sa$sfied only from work that results in large amounts of money and what it can purchase to demonstrate success. Clearly, someone who can find professional sa$sfac$on from the work itself– and not the rewards– is more humanis$c and emo$onally secure than those needing material things and recogni$on. If

you were to ask a painter why they like their job, the likely answer will be akin to: ‘I like to improve the campus through my work and see the work when it’s complete.’ You won’t find too many on Wall Street that share this kind of professional sen$ment. If humility is a virtue, then our peers are some of the most virtuous people around. Unfortunately, there isn’t much recogni$on given for the hard work and silent determina$on that takes place within our departments. Some would say that it’s a thankless job. However, once again, I would ask; Isn’t a person who can do the good work that must be done, without all the accolades, a more virtuous person? Isn’t a person more fulfilled in life if he or she can find sa$sfac$on in the act of doing the good work? Perhaps this kind of quiet determina$on is slipping away from our value system, but I hope not. At least it’s s$ll alive and well in the facili$es profession. Our people s$ll do the work well because that is enough of an accomplishment. The individuals and their peers know good work when they do it and see it, and that is enough recogni$on for them. Unfortunately, the majority of the other members of the ins$tu$on will never fully understand or appreciate the nature or difficulty of the work. But this is old news, and the work always goes on.

student or faculty member suffer from our lack of a8en$on. This seemingly impossible achievement of always doing ‘more with les’ is the result of values shared by our peers. Ul$mately it’s not about the money– it’s about the ins$tu$on and the students0 and that is why the job always gets done, despite con$nually declining resources. The last thing that any plant staff member would want is to be responsible for is a missed event, class, or research project as a result of inadequate effort. So every year, the work con$nues and the staff makes do. Much of the $me this is a result of determina$on to become more effec$ve and find every (and all) ways to maximize the u$liza$on of short resources.

They Do It Because… Every once in a while, when the economy is suffering like it is now, we feel good to have a job at all. Despite this, the economy will eventually improve and the pay scales offered to our professions will be below most in the private sector. Even then, the work will con$nue and progress will be made in support of the educa$onal mission. Why do they do it? They do it because it is work that has meaning and it is a part of a larger mission of educa$on and service. They do it because they are the kind of people that can find personal and professional sa$sfac$on from within. They do it beFinding Every (and all) Ways cause there are some people that s$ll Now, given that there are so many see work as a service and crea$on, skills required and their associated thereby adding to the world. They do tasks, how can anyone do this under it because they liked the idea of being the pressure of a con$nually declining among those who ‘contribute and budget? Ul$mately, our budgets ad- produce’ and find sa$sfac$on in that justed for infla$on and the square alone. footage managed has declined for decades. Yet, somehow, the buildings Ma8 Adams is the president of Adams do not fall down, and rarely does a FM2, Atlanta, GA.


Greenhouse site before construction– November 23rd

Greenhouse under construction –December 5th

The Physical Plant is currently building a new greenhouse at 3770 Lake Dr. The project is funded in part by a Science Division Grant. The new greenhouse will be used as a “starter house”, allowing the Biology Department to start growing plants in late Winter/ early Spring. Special thanks to Hoekwater Excava$ng for dona$ng the bulldozer work, and West Michigan Recycle Inc. for dona$ng the crushed stone!

Dice Mineralogical Museum

Through the extreme generosity of a Calvin College supporter, the Calvin campus will be expanding with the addi$on of the “Dice Mineralogical Museum”. The new addi$on is currently planned for the West side of North Hall. The two story addi$on will consist of a formal entry from within North Hall, a mineral gallery, a resource library, and a secure storage area. Construc$on is scheduled to begin in Spring in 2012 with comple$on the following Fall.

Special thanks to the Howard City Fire Department and the MI State Police for their assistance on November 19th. A stolen vehicle was set on fire on Waltman Lake Retreat and Learning Center property. Thanks to Nathan Bradford, of Campus Ministries, who no$fied the authori$es.

December Birthdays November Work Order Stats Administra$ve










Building Services KE Dorms Academic Buildings

36 78 12



Prince Conf. Center




November Vehicle Rentals Calvin fleet car


Calvin fleet minivan


Calvin fleet large van


Off-Campus Rental car


Off-Campus Rental minivan


Off-Campus Rental large van


2– Larry VanHoe 8– Romery Diaz 11– Bob Ritsema 21– Tim Bakelaar 25– Jesus of Nazareth 29– Larry Boone

Upcoming Dates & Events December 8December 9December 10December 12December 16December 22December 26-30Jauary 4-6 January 4January 24-

Over the Rhine concert Classes end 10:00 pm Reading recess Exams begin 9:00 am Christmas Break (students) starts 10:00 pm Physical Plant Christmas Party @ 12:00 pm Calvin staff/faculty Christmas break Hold it for the Holidays Weigh-In Interim term begins 8:30 am Interim term ends 5:00 pm

Work Orders “It doesn’t work, the work, it is clogged with… and hair. Wouldn’t you?” (Note: typed as submi8ed) “The CJ is out of Soap in the soap dispenser, and has been for a few days. Not a huge deal, bu8 if we can diminish the number of cases of pink Eye this semester that would be great! Thanks.” (Note: typed as submi8ed) “Could someone please trim the bushes extending over the walkway heading west out of Johnny's? Tall people have to duck or walk around, and there are a lot of tall people here :-)”

Staff Update David Nysse- Grounds




-Underwent surgery for Colon Cancer. The surgery went well, and he is expected to be released from the hospital by December 9th.


Bob Vanden Berg- Mechanical -Undergoing neck surgery on January 9th.

Contact Info Calvin College Physical Plant 1475 Knollcrest Circle Grand Rapids, MI 49546

E-mail: Phone: (616) 526-6444 Fax: (616) 526-8563

Visit us at: www.

6-04 DEC 2011  
6-04 DEC 2011  

calvin college physical plant newsletter