About Us (Old)

What are "Laker Traditions?"

What is your mission?

As a department of the Office of Student Life, the Laker Traditions team carries a simple mission to build community and affinity with Grand Valley State University. Whether it's joining us at one of our monthly events, or enjoying a Laker Weekends event, we want you to know you're a Laker for a Lifetime.

What events do you host?

Laker Traditions was designed to align all of Grand Valley's traditions and make them as successful as possible by being organized by one group. The events that Traditions has a hand in planning include Laker for a Lifetime Kickoff, Founder's Day, Family Weekend, Homecoming, Battle of the Valleys, Sibs N Kids Weekend, Presidents' Ball, Intercultural Festival, and a new spring event.

Who is a part of the Laker Traditions team?


Alyssa Smith
Overall Chair As the Overall Chair, Alyssa is responsible for supervising all of the coordinators on the Laker Traditions team. Her mission is to ensure each tradition is planned and executed flawlessly for the entire year.
Chelsea Button
Volunteer Coordinator Chelsea's duties as Volunteer Coordinator include recruiting, enlisting, and managing our team of volunteer staff. "These volunteers are stationed throughout our events helping in countless ways, from running booths, taking photos, set-up and clean-up, just to name a few. Our traditions would not be possible without our incredible volunteer staff!" - Chelsea
Tyler Ziola
Social Media and Promotions Coordinator Promotions and social media are on-going tasks for coordinator, Tyler. He is responsible for ensuring that each and every student on Grand Valley's campus knows about every tradition happening this year. He is also responsible for making sure that each event has live and post social media coverage!
Zach Morford
Laker Weekends Coordinator As Laker Weekends Coordinator, it is Zach's job to find and create events for students to partake in on the weekends. Zach states, "the purpose of this lasting tradition is to help students feel connected to Grand Valley, as well as offer a way for them to have fun and relieve stress."
Hannah French
Laker for a Lifetime Kickoff Coordinator (2014) "Laker for a Lifetime Kickoff is one of the first events freshmen can attend to see what Grand Valley is all about. This tradition is especially important because it's a great way to meet new people that could potentially be life long friend. This year's street party kickoff will surely get the incoming students pumped about their first year!" - Hannah
Caitlin Perlotto
Family Weekend Coordinator (2014) "I love how all the spirit events at Grand Valley bring the student body together as a whole. It gives us the opportunity to bond and get to know people from every class, age, and major." - Caitlin
Amanda Halasz
Founders' Day (with Laker Remembrance) Coordinator (2014) "I think traditions are important at Grand Valley because it makes students feel involved on the campus. I also believe it makes students feel proud to go to GV because we have unique traditions that you don't find at other universities." - Amanda
Ellerie Ambrose
Homecoming Coordinator (2013) "Homecoming is a time when the entirety of the school comes together as one, heightening the sense of pride in the school through the enjoyment of traditional activities throughout the week leading up to the most revered GV October activity, the homecoming football game." - Ellerie Brandon Fitzgerald
Homecoming Co-coordinator (2014) "Grand Valley's Homecoming is the biggest of GV's traditions. Not only is it a chance for students to show their GV spirit and participate in new and traditional events from LipSync to the football game, it's also a chance for faculty, staff, and alumni alike to show how they are all Lakers for a Lifetime." - Brandon Amy Hallochak
Homecoming Co-coordinator (2014) "Homecoming is the time of year where the Grand Valley community comes together to celebrate being a Laker!" - Amy Alicia Arnold
Battle of the Valleys Coordinator (2013) Battle of the Valleys is a long-time tradition at GV but has been completely remastered this year! "This year we are raising money for the non-profit organization S.P.O.R.T.S. This organization donates sports equipment and money to underprivileged kids, giving them a greater opportunity to participate in sports. This year we are going to have a week of different events to get students and alumni involved. GO GV!" - Alicia
Bethan Angell
Battle of the Valleys Coordinator (2014) "Battle of the Valleys is a great event for GVSU because it raises money for an organization while battling with SVSU! This year is going to be the best year yet!" - Bethan
Brandi Barno
Battle of the Valleys Assistant (2014) "Traditions are important because they connect the past, present, and future generations." - Brandi
Kelsey Rice
Sibs N Kids Coordinator (2014) "The Sibs 'N Kids weekend provides students an opportunity to showcase their fantastic campus life to their siblings. It is a great way to make all siblings, of any age, feel like a Laker for a Lifetime!" - Kelsey Emma Moulton
Presidents' Ball Coordinator (2014) "Hosted by the President of Grand Valley and the President of Student Senate, President's Ball is a night where students, faculty, and alumni come together to share an elegant night of dinner and dancing. President's Ball is an unique event that has been around for 28 years, what was once held in Kirkhof is now located downtown at the DeVos Center where over 4,000 attend." - Emma Alex Burkholz
Intercultural Festival Coordinator (2014) "Intercultural Festival is an opportunity for student organizations, academic departments, faculty, and more to come together to express their individual cultures and celebrate their rich heritages, along with diversity. The Intercultural Festival is a chance to bring them all together and celebrate the diversity at Grand Valley!" - Alex
Courtney Sutliff
ExtravaGRANDza Coordinator (Spring Tradition) (2014) "Traditions help shape us and help bring us back to our roots. The purpose of "ExtravaGRANDza" is to celebrate our achievements and reward our students as the academic year commences. Be proud to be a Laker and celebrate accomplishments!" - Courtney
Darcey Sempert
ExtravaGRANDza Assistant (Spring Tradition) (2014) "This tradition is awesome because its an end of the year celebration to remember the achievements of the year while rewarding the students for their accomplishments." - Darcey
Rebecca Noell
Assistant Volunteer Coordinator "The Laker Traditions team puts on these amazing traditions that bring people of all ages, races, and backgrounds together to take part in this wonderful community that most of us call home. The volunteers are the heart of these traditions!" - Rebecca Sean O'Melia
Laker Weekends Assistant "At GVSU, we're always trying to grow our community environment, and with Laker Weekends we can let people know about events that are open to anyone, and hope to get people involved on campus and create a unified Laker nation!" - Sean
Kristin Krause
Event Assistant

Previous members include CJ Wondergem (Family Weekend 2013), Erika Noth (Laker for a Lifetime Kickoff & Laker Remembrance Co, 2013), John Chadwick (Laker Remembrance Co, 2013).

Special Thanks

Laker Traditions would like to thank the following sponsors for their support!