What’s in a Name: A Popular Guide to Wealth & Influence at GVSU
A couple of years back, there was a controversy at GVSU when students raised questions and concerns over the influence that wealthy donors had on the campus and its politics. Students were told to be quiet about it and that they should be “grateful” for these wealthy donors.
As a response to these attempts to silence students and to normalize the the influence that wealthy donors have to university politics, we have put together a 17-page document entitled, A Popular Guide to Wealth & Influence at GVSU.
In this guide you will find an explanation of the importance of such a guide, how to use it, maps of both the Allendale and Grand Rapids campuses, a listing of some of the more prominent donors, narratives on how these people acquired their wealth, their politics and how it has influenced GVSU. There are also additional pages that, through images/graphics, shed light on the power and influence these individuals/families have on West Michigan as a whole. Lastly, there are two pages of resources used for the guide, for those wanting to read more about who the most powerful people are in the area that have donated to GVSU and how their wealth has negatively impacted people.
This guide is an organic document, which we hope will be used widely by students, faculty and the larger community. We also would love to see people add their own information and analysis to the document, since our work only provides a portion of the information on the power and influence of the individuals and families listed in the guide.