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CP_Students4_GU

Social Studies

Program Goal

Coursework in the Social Studies department will lead students to more fully understand their call to exercise the rights and responsibilities of participatory citizenship by instilling a comprehensive knowledge base in historical, geographic, civic, economic, psychological and sociological perspectives.  Students will develop the skills needed to acquire, organize, and use information and to be an ethical decision-maker in an ever-changing world.  Students will utilize their faith to acknowledge and respect the values of others and society through democratic and religious perspectives, applying the principles of Catholic Social Teaching as they act on issues in the community, nation and the world.

Alumni Reflections

  • “I would definitely say that the Social Studies experience at Catholic Central helped me. The content of my courses really stayed with me and helped me in my college classes.   Not only did I learn all about history, psychology, economics and government, I was also taught to have a work ethic and to pursue my passions.” Matt Pfennig, Class of 2012, University of Michigan
  • “Little comments like “you are good at Social Studies” and “you have potential” actually had huge impacts on my psyche.  Not only that, but Social Studies courses provided a great and interesting exposure to me of the fascinating world outside of my safe youth growing up in Grand Rapids.  In studying for some of my courses in college, I have been directly reminded again and again of particular high school lessons and moments.”  Patrick Buck, Class of 2011, Albion College

Course Offerings

Core                             Advanced Placement                               Electives

U.S. History               AP World History                                     World History

Government              AP U.S. History                                          World Geography

Economics                  AP Macroeconomics                               Sociology

                                        AP Psychology                                          Psychology

                                        AP U.S. Government & Politics

Faculty

Peter DeWitt . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Social Studies Department

                                                                               peterdewitt@grcatholiccentral.org

            B.A.     Grand Valley University

                           Major:  History

                           Minor:  English

 Kris DeYoung . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Social Studies Department

                                                                             krisdeyoung@grcatholiccentral.org

            *COREX, HOPE Volunteers, Sr. Class Advisor, Student Activities Dir.*

            B.A.     Calvin College

                            Major:  Art Education

                            Minor:  Psychology

Marc Olejniczak . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Social Studies Department

                                                                        marcolejniczak@grcatholiccentral.org

            B.S.      Central Michigan University

                           Major:  History

                           Minor:  Political Science

Tim Schrems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Social Studies Department

                                                                              timschrems@grcatholiccentral.org

            *Social Studies Department Head*

B.A.     Western Michigan University

Major:  Music Education

Grand Valley State University

Minor:  History

Honors and Awards

  • 76% of students who had taken 3 or more years of Social Studies coursework at Catholic Central were deemed ready for college course work in the Social Sciences
  • 100% of students taking the recommended series of coursework in Social Studies were deemed ready for college-level reading.
  • Average AP Psychology score for 2013 was 3.25 (Michigan average: 3.17)
  • Average AP U.S. History score for 2013 was 4.18 (national average: 2.77)
  • Average AP Macro Economics score for 2013 was 3.44 (national average: 2.8)

Department Opportunities

Mock Trial

Mock Trial is designed to re-enact much of what might take place in a trial court. Students take on the roles of attorneys and witnesses and compete against each other in real courtrooms in front of real judges and lawyers

Model United Nations

In Model United Nations, students step into the shoes of ambassadors from U.N. member states to debate current issues on the organization’s vast agenda. Student “delegates” in Model United Nations prepare draft resolutions, plot strategy, negotiate with supporters and adversaries, resolve conflicts, and intensely navigate the United Nations rules of procedures, as applied in the respective United Nations bodies, all in the interest of mobilizing “international cooperation” to resolve problems that affect almost every country on Earth.