Ryan Schlehuber “Scoop”

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IN BRIEF: IM KIDS 3rd Meal program gets boost in food donations

Thanks to a friendly competition between two intermediate school districts last month, more local children will be enjoying a third meal each day.

Annegret Paas, a teacher for students with autistic spectrum disorder at Seiter Education Center in Greenville, holds a puzzle of the U.S. states that she uses to teach the five students in her class, each one having a specific challenge with instruction, based on their IQ and behavioral levels. — Daily News/Ryan Schlehuber

Seiter Center creates new autism spectrum disorder classroom

In an effort to meet the demands of an increasing number of students with autism, a new middle school classroom opened at Seiter Education Center. The classroom opened Nov. 2, providing a place for five incoming students with severe autism spectrum disorder (ASD) to the area to learn.

Brooke Stoutjesdyk, 18, of Greenville, is the first of Montcalm Community College’s Early College enrollees to graduate with a college degree from the program since it was created in the 2013-2014 school year. — Daily News/Ryan Schlehuber

MCC’s Early College to graduate first student

Brooke Stoutjesdyk is in a class of her own — quite literally. She may have not gotten to walk with her class during Greenville High School’s graduation this past spring, but come Dec. 11, Brooke Stoutjesdyk will be graduated from high school and will have earned an associate’s degree from college.

The October theme for Edmore’s Palette Party was “Colorful Birch,” enjoyed by almost a dozen participants. The Palette Party paint and sip event, created and organized by Main Street Portraits owner Robin Miller and local artist Kristen Lower, has been going strong each month since its inception in September. (Courtesy photo)

S.H.E.: Edmore’s Main Street Portraits a fun place for networking, painting and, of course, wine

Paint-and-sip chains like Painting With A Twist and Pinot’s Palette have been taking off in bigger cities for a while, but lately the creative painting while enjoying wine event has been trending on a small community level, too. Such is the case in Edmore, where Robin Miller and Kristen Lower’s Palette Party event has taken off since its inception this past September.

Commercial Bank’s Community President Josh Gibbs was named to this year’s 40 Under Forty, an annual publication by Grand Rapids Business Journal highlighting successful busienss people in the West Michigan area. (Courtesy photo)

BUSINESS BEAT: Commercial Bank’s Josh Gibbs named to 40 Under Forty business journal

Josh Gibbs, community president of Commercial Bank, is one of 40 young business leaders named in Grand Rapids Business Journal’s annual 40 Under Forty Business Leaders journal this year.

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BUSINESS BEAT: Stanton business offering free cancer awareness ribbon tattoo Nov. 21

In an effort to raise cancer awareness, one tattoo parlor is offering free tattoos in exchange for donations to help the cause. For 24 consecutive hours, starting at 10 a.m. Nov. 21, Tattoos by Wojo is offering a two-inch color tattoo of the cancer awareness ribbon on a first come, first serve basis.

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MAISD makes improvements for students with autistic disorder

Since Nov. 2, local middle school students with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) have been enjoying a classroom specified for their needs.

During Thursday’s meeting of the Montcalm Area Intermediate School District (MAISD) Board, Superintendent of Special Education Jodi Willard announced the William J. Seiter Educational Service Center has a classroom now open to students with ASD.

David Bourgeois, president and creative director of Voice Coaches, a New York-based business which helps people train for voice-acting careers, will instructor a one-day only class called “Getting Paid To Talk” at Montcalm Community College Dec. 3. The class will be limited to 25 people. (Courtesy photo)

Dec. 3 voice acting class could open up self-employment opportunities in growing industry

There is a growing industry that is allowing more and more people self-employed opportunities, both full-time and part-time. One only needs a voice.

Five members of the Leaf It To Us volunteer group include, from left, Sydney Bucholz and Madilyn Barron of Belding, Jordan Powelson and Ian Millard of Greenville, and Mitchell Nichols of Stanton. The group came up with a volunteer service job for a class assignment through a Montcalm Community College’s Early College course raking leaves for local home owners. — Daily News/Ryan Schlehuber

Early College students take English course outside, learn life lessons

What started out as a class assignment has turned into a fulfilling life lesson for a few young students. Five students enrolled in Montcalm Community College’s (MCC) Early College program have created a free service for local residents as part of a year-long project. The group, creatively called “Leaf It To Us,” have been randomly choosing homes that need leaves raked and offering to do the raking for them for free.

The Montcalm Area Intermediate School District (MAISD) fund balance this year has been quite exceptional compared to past years, according to auditor Yeo & Yeo CPAs & Business Consultants. The general fund was up $351,905 from last year’s budget, with special education up almost the exact same at $351,671. The vocational education fund was up $88,669 from last year. — Graphic courtesy Yeo & Yeo CPAs & Business Consultants

MAISD learns audit results

The Montcalm Area Intermediate School District (MAISD) received good reviews on its audit for the 2014-2015 budget. Auditor Ali Barnes of Yeo & Yeo CPAs & Business Consultants informed the board on Oct. 8 that the budget is “in very good position” and all of its department’s budgets were “very consistent.”