Start Your Family with Best Living Places

Start Your Family with Best Living Places

Being family oriented is the most beautiful trait a person can possess. To live peacefully with family is the first priority of most of the people. The real problem occurs when you start hunting for such places. luxury apartments in Holland MI are not only luxurious but so comfortable that you will feel yourself on cloud nine after entering in these apartments. You will be impressed by the look and feel of these apartments. Not only will this, but the caliber of superior luxuries you will leave you spellbound.
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Construction resumes at Holland’s Civic Center

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Construction of Holland’s Civic Center renovation has resumed after a fatal accident.

The city announced Monday, Aug. 21, that workers will begin “full-scale construction” after work was immediately halted Aug. 1 when a partial roof collapse killed one worker and seriously injured another.

Last week, Mayor Nancy DeBoer told The Sentinel city officials were completing “due diligence” to make sure it was safe to resume work on the project. According to a news release, officials reviewed the accident and structural integrity of the building and decided the project could move forward.

It is unknown if the project’s timeline for completion will be delayed or if costs will be affected; it is scheduled for a fall 2018 completion.

The Michigan Occupational and Health Administration was on site investigating, as is typical for these types of accidents, though it never closed the site, DeBoer said last week.

When construction on the building was halted, crews worked on snowmelt along Maple Avenue, which is associated with the project.

Workers from GO Construction, which is owned by Geenen DeKock Properties, began construction in July on the Civic Center, as part of a $16.5 million project to modernize the events and recreation center. The building is more than 60 years old.

— Follow this reporter on Twitter @SentinelSydney.

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Annual Michigan Economic Developers Association meeting held in Holland

Annual Michigan Economic Developers Association meeting held in Holland

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The three-day event, hosted at the Haworth Inn and Conference Center, kicks off on Wednesday, August 16 and wraps up on Friday, August 18. It will feature breakouts, meetups and tours hosted throughout the region.

The city of Holland is rolling out the red carpet for this year’s Michigan Economic Developers Association (MEDA) annual meeting.

The three-day event, hosted at the Haworth Inn and Conference Center, kicks off on Wednesday, Aug. 16, and wraps up on Friday. It will feature breakouts, meetups and tours hosted throughout the region.

“Holland is the ideal setting to showcase forward-thinking economic development practices that work,” said John Avery, MEDA’s executive director. “The West Michigan Lakeshore region is a shining example of how economic development success can be achieved by all sizes of communities.”

This year is the first year Holland was considered for the annual meeting and according to Emily Staley, director of marketing and communications at Lakeshore Advantage, the city qualified to hold the event because of its recent addition of hotel space in the downtown area.

This year’s event is expected to be the most well-attended meeting in the MEDA’s 57-year history and currently more than 170 economic development professionals are registered to attend the meetings.

“Ensuring great jobs and opportunities for this generation and generations to come, one of the reasons economic development is important, is achieved in this region by this exact type of leadership and collaboration between businesses, schools and community and support organizations,” said Jennifer Owens, president of Lakeshore Advantage.

“A standing ovation goes out to our world-class employers and businesses opening their doors this week as exceptional examples of achieving economic success and a vibrant community for living, working, playing and learning.”

The MEDA 2017 annual meeting serves as the organization’s biggest education and networking event of the year.

This year, the conference will kick off with a session by Franco Bianchi, president and CEO of Haworth, Inc. and Brian C. Walker, president and CEO of Herman Miller, Inc. and Jeff Mason, the new Michigan Economic Development Corporation president and CEO will be the keynote speaker on Friday.

Tours for this year’s event will include the Holland Energy Park, the Michigan State University Bioeconomy Institute and Saugatuck Brewing Company. Local businesses including Boatwerks, Big E’s, Butch’s, Curragh Irish Pub, New Holland Brewing and others will host events during the conference as well as provide food options for conference participants.

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Man accused of robbing Holland Township bank

Daniel Patrick Keasey

HOLLAND, MI –A 57-year-old Holland man is accused of robbing a bank, implying he had a weapon.

Daniel Patrick Keasey was arraigned Friday, Aug. 11 in Holland District Court on a charge of bank robbery.

He is held in the Ottawa County Jail on a $25,000 bond.

Police allege Keasey implied he was armed and robbed the West Michigan Community Bank, 82 Douglas Ave., about noon Thursday.

He was arrested hours later at Pigeon Creek County Park in the West Olive area.

The scene of a fatal wrong-way crash on U.S. 131 near Rockford on Friday, Aug. 11

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Holland teacher named to ESSA teacher advisory council

Holland teacher named to ESSA teacher advisory council

A Holland Public school teacher will be part of the conversation as Michigan prepares to implement the Every Student Succeeds Act, the federal education law that replaced No Child Left Behind.

Amber Kasic, a Spanish teacher at Holland High School, was one of 24 teachers chosen out of more than 300 applicants to serve on the newly-created Michigan Teacher Leadership Advisory Council.

“Their collective talents and experience will be an asset to the council as we collaborate on the state’s plan to implement Michigan’s ESSA plan and work to become a Top 10 educations state within 10 years,” State Superintendent Brian Whiston said. “Based on the leadership these educators have demonstrated in our schools and communities, we know that Michigan’s students are in great hands.”

Kasic said the council will be having their first orientation meeting next week, and monthly meetings will be held after that.

“The basic goal is that we are going to help implement and act as a voice for teachers in our region with feedback, and we’ll help bring the plan to teachers in our region,” she said.

Kasic said she learned of the opportunity through an email from the Michigan Department of Education asking for applicants.

“I think teaching is more a lifestyle than a job,” she said. “I care about the kids in this state. The nice thing about ESSA is that it’s a little bit more flexible than No Child Left Behind, and may be able to provide more tailored to individual needs rather than a blanket approach for districts, as not all districts are the same.”

Along with the ESSA work, the council will be a part of helping the MDE’s goal of making Michigan a top 10 state of education in 10 years. There are plans for a proud Michigan educator campaign that will help give a voice to teachers across the state.

“I’m really invested in education being transformed in our state and our kids and teachers have been left out, I think,” Kasic said. “We can be a fantastic resource for our state, and I’m really excited to be able to gather input from teachers in my region and bring that to the table.”

The work of the council will likely begin soon, as Michigan’s ESSA plan continues to work through the approval process. MDE officials and officials from the U.S. Department of Education had a phone call on Wednesday, Aug. 2, concerning the ESSA plan. Whiston said the call was to address and clarify elements of Michigan’s plan.

Based on the Wednesday phone call, USED now will finalize its feedback letter, outlining parts of the Michigan plan that need more detail. That letter will not be a determination on Michigan’s plan, but feedback from USED and peer reviewers that Michigan can consider in preparing its final submission to USED.

Whiston said that in addition to the technical amendments to the plan, more work will be required by MDE to show how the state’s Transparency Dashboard will be designed and used to identify the state’s most struggling schools.

“We will get that done and back to USED so we can get the Secretary’s determination by the end of August,” Whiston said.

— Follow this reporter on Twitter @SentinelErin.

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1 dead after roof collapse at Holland Civic Center in West Michigan

1 dead after roof collapse at Holland Civic Center in West Michigan

HOLLAND, Mich. – One person was killed after the roof collapsed at the Holland Civic Center in Holland, Michigan.

Two people were initially trapped; one has already been freed and sustained serious injuries.

The second was freed but was pronounced dead at the scene.

Today at 3:13 pm, Holland Department of Public Safety police and fire units were dispatched to a report of a ceiling collapse at the Holland Civic Center. Upon arrival, officers and firefighters found one person trapped in the debris and a second person injured near the collapse. Both subjects were working for a sub-contracting company, which is involved in the renovation work at the Civic Center. The collapse involved a small area near the east doors.

The Civic Center has been undergoing renovations since the spring. The construction project spans four square blocks between 8th and 9th streets. It includes expansion and improvements to the Farmers Market, gym renovations and new lighting and sound to the stage. The north hall is also being expanded to provide year-round indoor market space and more recreation space.

Copyright 2017 by WDIV ClickOnDetroit – All rights reserved.

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How Michigan Works to Prevent Fair Ride Disasters

How Michigan Works to Prevent Fair Ride Disasters

A July 27, 2017 photo shows rides at the Ottawa County Fair in Park Township.

PARK TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Wednesday’s deadly carnival ride disaster at the Ohio State Fair underlines the potential dangers of traveling summer amusement parks.

“I’m just hoping that they really double-check things more,” said Jackie Boss of Holland, who came to the Ottawa County Fair Thursday with her grandnephews.

There are as many as 100 million rides operating in Michigan every year, according to the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.

Considering the quantity of rides, the state has a remarkable record of safety, with only 10 injuries reported last year.

“The state of Michigan has a very rigorous safety system,” said Debbie Elliot, co-owner of Michigan-based Elliot’s Amusements. “We’re real lucky here.”

Michigan’s regulatory agency must inspect every ride in the state each year, but that’s not where it ends, according to Elliot.

“We have an independent, private inspector that comes out once a year and spends two or three days with us,” Elliot said. “He goes through every aspect of the ride, top to bottom.”

Elliot said on-site, company-employed inspectors document checks of every ride, every day.

LARA officials say 80 percent of all injuries on rides are because of the riders’ actions.

“In the state of Michigan, we have the ‘Rider Responsibility Law’ which on all of our rides is posted,” Elliot said. “They have to follow the rules.”

There is no evidence of any ride-related injuries at the Ottawa County Fair. However in 2014, an 8-year-old child and 6-year-old child fell from a Ferris wheel at a fair in Chelsea, Michigan. Authorities determined the girl’s crutch got stuck, causing the bucket to tip.

In July of 2006, 8-year-old Blake Miller of Greenville died while riding the Fire Ball at the Ionia Free Fair. However, it was determined he likely suffered some type of heart problem while on the ride.

Authorities stand near the Fire Ball amusement ride after the ride malfunctioned injuring several at the Ohio State Fair, Wednesday, July 26, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio. Some of the victims were thrown from the ride when it malfunctioned Wednesday night, said Columbus Fire Battalion Chief Steve Martin. (Barbara J. Perenic/The Columbus Dispatch via AP)

Inspectors are still trying to determine what caused the Fire Ball at the Ohio State Fair to break apart Wednesday, killing an 18-year-old man who had just enlisted in the Marines and injuring seven others. Industry leaders and the state will be watching closely to see what Michigan can learn from the tragedy.

“It’s our industry’s worst nightmare,” Elliot said.

Fairs in California, New Jersey and Canada shut down similar rides after the accident.

Ride manufacturer KMG said 43 of the rides, also known as the Afterburner, are in use in the U.S. and elsewhere. LARA officials confirmed that the ride is not operating in Michigan.

“I’m hoping they got an eye-opening on what’s really going on,” Boss said. “We’ve never heard of bad issues here. What happened in Ohio was a bad experience, but I just pray it will never happen again.”

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Holland Adopts New Downtown Parking Enforcement Strategy: Asking Nicely

Holland Adopts New Downtown Parking Enforcement Strategy: Asking Nicely

The city of Holland is hiring a parking ambassador to keep employees of downtown businesses from parking along Eighth Street, pictured here in this file photo. (Shandra Martinez | MLive)

HOLLAND, MI — The city of Holland will be trying a new approach to enforcing parking rules downtown: by asking nicely.

The city is in the process of hiring a “parking ambassador” — a new part-time position tasked with patrolling Eighth Street parking spaces in Holland’s downtown.

It’s the strategy the Holland City Council adopted as it looks to keep employees of downtown businesses from parking in high-demand Eighth Street parking spaces.

Rather than adding parking meters — as a paid consultant suggested — Holland decided an employee would bring the personal, friendly touch that they want to relay to visitors of the city.

The $12-per-hour ambassador will write “educational tickets” for possible violations including:

Overnight permit holders that are not parked in the identified areas. Downtown Holland allows no parking on street or lots from 2-5am except for permit holders. Permit holders are required to park only in certain lots for certain time periods. Vehicles parked in a handicap space without the correct handicap identification Vehicles parked in front of fire hydrants Vehicles parked in a clearly identified no parking zone

These violations carry fines.

The ambassadors will also be tasked with both directing visitors and downtown workers to parking lots and spaces that the city deems suitable for each.

The ambassador, once hired, will work either in the mornings or afternoons on Mondays through Fridays.

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Children of Migrant Workers Find Home, Prosper in Holland

Children of Migrant Workers Find Home, Prosper in Holland

By Jake.Allen / @hollandsentinel.com / 616-546-4273

Holland has always been a place for people willing to “work their rear-ends off,” said Roberto Jara, executive director of Latin Americans United for Progress.

Holland has always been a place for people willing to “work their rear-ends off,” said Roberto Jara, executive director of Latin Americans United for Progress.

Opportunity for hard workers is a reason for the return of seasonal migrant workers year after year to the Holland area. These opportunities have also helped many children of migrant workers find permanent homes in Holland, Jara said.

Jara’s own mother was a migrant worker, and he ultimately decided to make Holland his home.

“There’s a lot of jobs for the migrant workers that don’t involve speaking English and don’t involve elaborate skills,” Jara said. “There’s also fantastic schools here. It’s a mix of all of those things. It’s a good community for everybody and you can ride on the coattails of that.”

Audra Fuentes, a department analyst for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Migrant Affairs, said the most recent numbers on migrant workers in Michigan are from 2013 when the Michigan Interagency Migrant Services Committee compiled a migrant and seasonal farmworker enumeration profiles study. It estimated that the total number of migrant workers in Michigan was 32,337 and that there were 29,227 non-farm workers in migrant households.

Ottawa County had the most migrant workers in the state with 4,754, while Allegan County had the fifth most with 1,810, according to the study.

The study also tracked the number of children of migrant workers — estimated to be 27,965 — which included anyone younger than 19 living with a migrant worker.

Jara said, for most people in the Latino community now living in Holland, at least one of their parents was a migrant worker.

“This is just a place where you feel like you can be safe and is a strong place to raise your family,” Jara said. “There’s just a high quality of life around here. People have family values, a strong work ethic and it’s attractive to a lot of Latino families.”

Juanita Bocanegra

Ottawa County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney

In hindsight, Juanita Bocanegra said she would have been overwhelmed if she thought about everything she needed to accomplish to reach her goals.

Bocanegra was the child of migrant workers and grew up with a mother, who had a fourth-grade education and a father, who had a second-grade education.

Now Bocanegra is the assistant prosecuting attorney in Ottawa County and works at the 58th District Court in Holland.

Bocanegra’s family first came to Michigan in 1979, but stopped migrating because there was concern it would negatively impact Bocanegra’s education.

In 1985 after some encouragement from his brothers, Bocanegra’s father decided their family should migrate to Michigan again. Bocanegra’s grades actually improved once her family began the migration again.

She found support from her fifth grade teacher in Michigan.

“He believed in me, he taught me to believe in myself,” Bocanegra said. “He taught me not to expect less of myself just because I was a migrant worker and he kind of really took me under his wing.”

Bocanegra continued to find support from Michigan teachers throughout school and continued to surprise her Texas teachers when she would migrate back with good grades. She excelled in school even though English was her second language.

“In hindsight, it took a lot of hard work,” Bocanegra said. “I took it one day at a time and focused on what I needed to do that day, that week, that month. If I stopped to think about everything I needed to accomplish it would have been overwhelming.”

After graduating from high school, Bocanegra stopped migrating between Texas and Michigan and started college at Grand Valley State University.

She graduated with a degree in international relations and minored in legal studies and Spanish. Bocanegra married when she was a junior in college and her first daughter was born shortly afterward.

She had her heart set on becoming a lawyer and going to law school at University of Texas, but both her and her and husband realized Holland was home.

“This is where we wanted to raise the family and, as hard as it was, we finally decided to stay in Michigan,” Bocanegra said.

Bocanegra started at Cooley Law School in Grand Rapids, while working full-time as a legal assistant at a law firm and part-time at a bank. She also had two children at home.

“I can’t tell you how many times I went to bed at 2 or 3 in the morning, working two jobs and with two young kids at home,” Bocanegra said. “It just seemed like the normal. That’s what I did.”

Bocanegra compared her late nights during law school to being a migrant kid and staying up to study and do homework.

She finished law school and continued working at a law firm. In 2011, Bocanegra and 350 other applicants applied for an open position with the Ottawa County Prosecutor’s Office. She got the position and hasn’t looked back.

She likes giving members of the community who are willing to work hard for an opportunity a second chance. At the same time, Bocanegra said she likes to work hard to protect the community and put those behind bars who deserve it.

Bocanegra said her experience as a child of migrant workers has an influence on her work today.

“It kept me humble; it allows me to have an open mind,” Bocanegra said. “A lot of the people we work with on a daily basis do not come from a privileged background and I am able to work with them.”

Bocanegra has a message for children of migrant workers or those in a similar situation she was in as a child.

“I would tell them not to get discouraged, to believe in themselves,” Bocanegra said. “You can’t expect somebody else to believe in your capabilities if you don’t have any trust in yourself. Just believe you can do it, work hard at it.”

Alfredo Gonzales

Retired dean at Hope College

Alfredo Gonzales was almost 16 years old before he started going to school. In December, he retired as dean of international and multicultural education at Hope College.

Gonzales was a child of migrant workers. He was born in Texas, but raised by his grandparents in Mexico.

When he was a teenager, Gonzales rejoined his parents and they migrated between Texas and other southern states in the U.S.

Gonzales said his parents worked with a number of different crops including strawberries, tomatoes, blueberries, pickles and apples.

“You follow the seasonality of the vegetables or fruits that are coming to maturity at that particular time,” Gonzales said.

In the mid-1960s, Gonzales and his family settled in South Haven, shortly before he started school for the first time.

Gonzales said his family came to Michigan because there was a need for work and opportunity in South Haven.

According to Gonzales, the law at the time made it illegal for children above the age of 16 not to show up for school. Gonzales started at South Haven High School when he was 15.

Gonzales compared starting school at that age to getting dropped in a foreign country with no time to learn the language or culture.

“I felt a little bit out of place,” Gonzales said. “I had no context for it. I had no idea about education. I had no idea what people expected of me and I also did not know the importance of education.”

Through the encouragement of his mother — a woman without any formal education herself — and teachers, Gonzales finished high school.

Determined to continue his path in education, Gonzales enrolled at Lake Michigan Community College in Benton Harbor. About halfway through his first semester, he received a letter from the U.S. Army informing him that he had been drafted.

His counselor at school told him he could probably get a deferment, but his father encouraged him to join the Army.

“My father said, ‘Well no, I served in the Army. Your cousins have died in the wars and when your country calls that is something you need to do,’” Gonzales said.

Gonzales completed basic training in North Carolina, then was sent overseas to Germany; he said deployment was one of the best experiences of his life.

“It was formidable and probably essential for me,” Gonzales said. “In retrospect, it gave me an opportunity to know about the world and it gave me an opportunity to learn about international education.”

When Gonzales returned to Michigan after three and a half years with the Army, his family moved to Holland and he began working for the city as an administrative assistant. He was then named director of the first human relations commission with the city.

He enrolled at Hope College and finished his degree at Grand Valley State University. Gonzales said college was difficult because he didn’t know anyone else who had gone and didn’t have a guide to follow.

“It’s very difficult to find a new address in a large city unless you have some idea how to get to that address,” Gonzales said. “Once you do it, it gets a lot easier.”

After graduating from GVSU, Gonzales started working at Hope College. Throughout his years there, Gonzales directed the Upward Bound program, minority affairs and the office of multicultural education. He also served as assistant provost, associate provost and finally the dean for international and multicultural education.

Gonzales said he worked hard for his education and achievements because he wanted to contribute to the community.

“Education remains the bridge to freedom,” Gonzales said. “Education is essential for the development and for the vision we have for a democratic society.”

Getting as much education as possible is something Gonzales said he encourages anyone in a migrant field to do.

“You have to believe in yourself,” Gonzales said. “Believe that you can make a difference in the world. It doesn’t have to be a large difference. It can be a very small stamp, working really anywhere.”

For Gonzales, coming from a migrant background, Holland has become home.

“This is the place that I know,” Gonzales said. “I would say that Holland is my place of awakening and development and, to that extent, I would consider Holland and Michigan my home.”

Nayeli Venegas

Teacher at Holland Language Academy

Growing up as a child of migrant workers and learning English as a second language, Nayeli Venegas found elementary and middle school difficult.

She decided she wanted to help children in similar situations and is now a fourth grade teacher at Holland Language Academy.

Venegas’ parents were migrant workers at a nursery in Grand Haven and lived in housing provided by their employer. They would work in Grand Haven from April until November, but couldn’t find affordable housing in Michigan after the season ended.

They would migrate back to Texas to find affordable housing. Venegas said this was difficult because she felt she was behind the other students in Michigan schools due to the migration.

“The most difficult part for me was the support that my teachers gave me was lacking,” Venegas said. “They had a hard time understanding my situation and that I needed extra support.”

Venegas said one of the most difficult parts of school was that her parents didn’t speak English and couldn’t help her with her homework.

Before starting at West Ottawa High School, Venegas told her parents she couldn’t migrate anymore. She wanted a stable education and an opportunity to get scholarships for college.

Venegas said her drive to become a teacher pushed her through high school.

“I had that vision or goal of helping students and children in the future, who faced the same challenges I did,” Venegas said. “When I was in middle school I already knew I wanted to be a teacher, specifically a language teacher.”

After high school, Venegas received two scholarships for being a migrant student and another for being a first generation college student. She enrolled at Hope College.

After college, Venegas began her job at Holland Language Academy, a safe environment for non-native English speakers, Venegas said.

“It is very important for students learning English to build a base in their native language of Spanish and add English later on,” Venegas said. “I wish I had gone through a program like that and I could have felt safe and included and not singled out.”

Venegas said her job gives her an opportunity to share her story with children of migrant workers and their families and uses her job as a way to offer support any way possible.

It feels great to give back to her community, Venegas said.

“They (students at Holland Language Academy) can relate to me and I want to be a role model and help them succeed,” Venegas said. “I want to let them know they are going to succeed and it doesn’t matter where you come from as long as you set up goals. They can work hard to reach those goals and will meet them.”

Nohemi Jimenez

Defense Attorney

A lot of injustice is what Nohemi Jimenez saw growing up as a child of a migrant worker. This led her to become a lawyer.

Jimenez’s mother was a widow and a migrant worker. Jimenez remembers helping her mother during the summer with blueberries in Michigan or with asparagus in Washington before returning home to Texas.

Jimenez married when she was a senior in high school in Texas and she decided not to migrate with her mother that year because it was difficult to focus on school while migrating. A lot of times Jimenez said she would end the semester with an incomplete in a class while migrating.

After graduating from high school, Jimenez’s husband found work at a blueberry farm in Michigan. The couple migrated between Texas and Michigan before she decided to go to to school to become a lawyer.

After graduating from Grand Valley State University, Jimenez worked at a bank. She continued working at the bank while going to Cooley Law School and raising a family.

Now Jimenez owns and works at her own law firm, called Jimenez Legal in Holland.

“I always wanted to help people that didn’t know how to defend themselves and defend their rights,” Jimenez said. “Working with migrant workers you see a lot of injustices. Sometimes people don’t even get their breaks and they work a lot of hours and they don’t get good pay.”

Ninety percent of her clients are Hispanic and are looking for a lawyer who understands their language, Jimenez said.

“I am bilingual and we can communicate and they can express how they feel, what they need, what they want and their problems in their own language,” Jimenez said. “That really makes me feel good — to be able to help people.”

— Follow this reporter on Twitter @SentinelJake.

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How Tom Holland Went Undercover at a Bronx High School to Prepare for Spider-Man: Home coming

How Tom Holland Went Undercover at a Bronx High School to Prepare for Spider-Man: Home coming

Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images

When Tom Holland isn’t filming or speaking at press conferences he just might be found in a high school.

Halfway through his senior year at the Bronx High School of Science, Arun Bishop received an unexpected request. He was sitting in the principal’s office chatting casually with an adviser when the vice principal approached him with an offer from Marvel Studios.

Marvel wanted to send the newest Spider-Man—the London-born actor Tom Holland—to high school so he could better understand his role as the teen Peter Parker. But because Parker is a brilliant tech whiz at the fictional Midtown School of Science and Technology, there was only one place Holland could go.

You see, the Bronx High School of Science is not your run-of-the-mill high school. It is consistently ranked as one of the top high schools in the country, and students must score highly on a competitive New York City-wide exam to gain entry.

The public school’s list of notable alumni is so extensive that it has its own Wikipedia page and includes eight Nobel Prize winners, the celebrity astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, and the “Iron Man” and “Elf” director Jon Favreau. (Full disclosure: I also attended Bronx Science, but I have yet to make it onto the Wikipedia page.)

Marvel wanted Holland to shadow a student who was pursuing a STEM—science, technology, engineering, and math—curriculum similar to what Parker would be studying, and Bishop quickly emerged as a prime candidate. As a senior, Bishop was the captain of the school’s robotics team and was taking high-level science classes.

Bishop—a big Marvel fan who lists Iron Man as his favorite Avenger because of his love of robotics—quickly agreed to let Holland shadow him for a couple of days.

“I’ve never been huge on celebrities. I never followed that sort of stuff,” Bishop told Business Insider. “But I thought it’d be a really cool experience.”

At the beginning of February 2016, Holland arrived at Bronx Science and met Bishop in the courtyard before school started. The pair got to know each other a bit and reviewed Holland’s backstory.

Because Marvel wanted Holland to get as close to an authentic experience as possible, he had to go undercover. In addition to Bishop, the only other people who would know Holland’s true identity were his teachers and a few members of the administration.

Holland would use an American accent and introduce himself to other students as Bishop’s cousin Ben. Any questions about how he got into Bronx Science without taking the entrance exam would be explained away by saying his father was in the military and recently was stationed in New York.

The plan was almost foiled from the start. The school had provided Holland with an ID card so he could swipe in at the beginning of the day. However, instead of creating one with a unique card number, it instead made a copy of Bishop’s, with a different photo and name. When the pair entered the school, the system registered it as someone trying to swipe in twice and sounded the alarm. Security came over, but they explained the situation and carried on without attracting too much attention. From there, it was time to go to class.

“What Marvel wanted was just to get the experience of a typical STEM high schooler’s life,” Bishop said. “They didn’t want me to do anything special—just walk through the day as I would any other day.”

With a backpack in tow, Holland accompanied Bishop through his STEM-intensive schedule. The actor sat in on Advanced Placement physics; linear algebra and differential equations; experimental engineering; AP calculus AB; AP English literature; and AP microeconomics.

“I felt a little bad for him, having to go through my entire schedule,” Bishop said. “If you don’t know what’s going on, those 40-minute classes must be boring.”

But even though most of the course material was going over his head, Holland was enjoying himself. In England, he had been to only all-boys schools, and he told Bishop it was “a little funny” to be in a coed classroom.

After their first day together, Bishop said it was easy to forget that Holland would soon be one of the most recognizable people in the world. He said the actor was very easy to talk to and that it got to the point where he just felt like he was talking to another friend.

“I kept reminding myself: ‘This is Tom Holland. He’s gonna be Spider-Man for Marvel,'” Bishop said. “It’s weird now when I see him in a commercial or something. There’s a disassociation where my brain knows I’ve talked to this guy and shown him around school, but seeing him on the screen is different.”

By the second day, the thrill of being undercover was wearing off, and Holland was starting to experience a feeling most high schoolers have daily: boredom. To pass the time, he tried to convince some people that he was Spider-Man. It wasn’t that easy, though.

“Most of them wouldn’t believe him at all. Because that just doesn’t make sense, right?” Bishop told Business Insider. “Why, at Bronx Science, would there be an actor who’s been shadowing me for a day and a half?”

Bishop and Holland went out into the courtyard during their lunch period to have some fun. Holland would ask students if they would mind answering a few questions about Marvel, and Bishop would film the interaction on Holland’s phone.

“He’d ask them: ‘Do you watch Marvel Movies? Who’s your favorite superhero? What do you think of the new Spider-Man actor?'” Bishop said. “It was crazy; nobody recognized him.”

Bishop and Holland did manage to convince one group of girls that Holland was Spider-Man by showing them his ID and having them look him up on their phones. When the girls realized a celebrity was in their midst, they “went a little crazy,” Bishop said.

At the end of Holland’s two days undercover, the pair parted ways. Holland left to begin filming the first of six films in which he’ll play the famous wall-crawler.

Bishop is now a rising sophomore at the University of Michigan majoring in mechanical engineering with a minor in computer science. Though he was selected to help Holland better understand the life of Parker, his career goals line up more closely with those of Tony Stark: Bishop hopes to one day obtain his master’s and work in the field of robotics.

And now that Spider-Man: Homecoming is taking the box office by storm?

“I have obviously bragged a little,” Bishop said. “Because why not?”

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What You Can Do When You Get To Holland Michigan

What You Can Do When You Get To Holland Michigan

Have you ever been to all the Michigan before? It is a place that is on the shores of the lake called Macatawa. It is south of Muskegon, and just west of Grand Rapids. In fact, if you have been to Kalamazoo, Battle Creek, or even as far south as South Bend Indiana, you have likely been to this beautiful location. Here is a quick overview of the many things you can do when you get to Holland Michigan this year.

Lighthouses And Windmills In Holland Michigan

There are so many lighthouses in this area, primarily because it is on Lake Michigan. Most of the cities and towns that are along the inner coastlines of Lake Michigan had lighthouses for boats to see at night. They could judge where they were based upon where the lighthouses were position, and some of these structures are absolutely magnificent such as Big Red Lighthouse. As the name would suggest, just as there are windmills in the country of Holland, which is now referred to as the Netherlands, has windmills in many different locations. You can see them when you go to Windmill Island Gardens, Nellis Dutch Village, and even on your way to Holland State Park Beach.

Other Places To Visit In Holland Michigan

A couple other places that you should go will include Mount Pisgah, Tunnel Park, and Centennial Park to name a few. Once you have been here a couple of times, you will literally fall in love with the beauty of the region. It is a place that you can take a vacation, or simply drive through. Either way, you are going to be very happy with what you see. It is one of the best places in Michigan to visit. Find out more about traveling to this destination which will be one of the top stops on your trip throughout the state of Michigan.