Faculty Focus

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facultyfocus

Jamie Hopkins
MCC Language Arts Instructor

Jamie Hopkins believes that an effective path to lifelong learning is through a regular, lifelong reading habit.

“This passionate view of literacy is what led me to English education, and it is the same drive that led me to work with developmental students at the college level,” says Hopkins, who joined Montcalm Community College in 2011 and brings more than 15 years of teaching experience to the institution.

“A world without reading is dark and silent, but a world filled with books is one of open windows and fresh ideas,” she adds.

Hopkins teaches a variety of language arts courses at MCC including College Reading, Introduction to Basic Writing, Basic Writing and others. She attributes much of her success in life to mastery of written words and she strives for the same with her students.

Hopkins says she strives to provide a classroom atmosphere where it is okay for students to be frustrated, but where giving up is not acceptable.

“I want other people to hear my students’ ideas because they have found a way to clearly express their passions,” she says. “Many of them understand the importance of strengthening their literacy skills, but they need positive experiences with reading and writing to make that happen.”

Hopkins says she strives to provide a classroom atmosphere where it is okay for students to be frustrated, but where giving up is not acceptable.

“This kind of learning takes confidence that can only be built with encouragement and solid strategies for comprehension, studying and writing,” she says. “One of my most important jobs is teaching students how to use those effective literacy strategies.”

Hopkins earned an associate degree in arts and sciences from MCC, a bachelor’s degree in education and a master’s degree in English language and literature from Central Michigan University. Previously, she taught language arts at the high school level for more than 15 years. She has also been a presenter at both the state and national levels and her work has been published in the “Language Arts Journal of Michigan.” CF

Brianne Lodholtz
MCC Mathematics Instructor

Brianne Lodholtz enjoys giving back to the community through education.

She teaches a variety of mathematics courses at MCC, and says she can’t imagine doing anything else. Lodholtz appreciates helping students develop a set of powerful and versatile skills that today’s employers and educational institutions are looking for.

“You use math every day in your life,” she says. “I enjoy working with the variety of people to help them develop appreciation for the subject that so many are scared of.

A strong background in math helps prepare students for higher paying jobs and greater opportunities throughout their lives

“A strong background in math helps prepare students for higher paying jobs and greater opportunities throughout their lives,” Lodholtz says. “These are critical skills that help them achieve success while doing everyday tasks such as securing a mortgage, negotiating the terms of a car loan or determining their monthly household budget.

“Math teaches students how to develop critical thinking skills and how to solve problems creatively,” she adds.

Lodholtz uses this same philosophy as her driving goal as an instructor. She believes teaching with real life examples to show students the importance of math in their day-to-day life makes an intimidating subject more understandable.

Exploring real world situations to demonstrate math concepts while working in groups is a common occurrence in her classrooms.

Lodholtz earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics with a minor in biology and a secondary certification in teaching from Grand Valley State University and a master’s degree in education with an emphasis in math from Grand Valley State University. She has been a math instructor at MCC for three years. Previously, she taught for Jenison High School and Grand Rapids Community College, and she worked in medical marketing where she gained experience in using math outside of the classroom in the corporate and medical fields. CF

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