On November 2, 1986, a special constituency meeting of the Michigan Conference of Seventh-day Adventists voted to merge Adelphian Academy and Cedar Lake Academy. This vote set into motion the process that culminated in the establishment of Great Lakes Adventist Academy (GLAA) on the grounds of what was formerly Cedar Lake Academy.
The school is centrally located on M-46, four miles east of the village of Edmore. This rural setting encourages an appreciation and love for nature. The spacious grounds and modern buildings provide the students with a comfortable atmosphere in which to live and learn.
When GLAA opened its doors for the 1987 - 1988 school year, it did so with a commitment to continue the combined years of service that characterized Adelphian Academy and Cedar Lake Academy.
Even though GLAA is Michigan’s newest boarding academy, in a very real sense it is also the oldest. Our school is dedicated to carry on the traditions begun by Cedar Lake in 1898 and Adelphian in 1904. We present here a historical glimpse of the two schools that provide the foundation upon which we are building.
Cedar Lake Academy was founded on December 2, 1898, with the five dollar purchase of a two-story public school building. When Professor J. G. Lamson, first principal, arrived at Cedar Lake, the district school was still in session, but he was permitted to use a little recitation room as his office. This room and another little room represented the beginning of the administration of Cedar Lake Academy.
With some renovations and the addition of a basement, the 48’ x 30’ school building provided space for classrooms, dormitories, principal’s home, dining-room and kitchen. School opened on January 16, 1899, with about thirty students. Mr. H.W. Johnson and Mr. and Mrs. Lamson were the academic family. Frank Mosebar was in charge of the farm, and his wife was the matron.
Incorporated under the name Cedar Lake Industrial Academy on March 21, 1902, the school taught a very practical curriculum. Along with the basics of Bible, English and Mathematics, the school also taught printing, tent-making, bookkeeping, agriculture, blacksmithing, beekeeping, food preparation and carpentry. The first two graduates completed grade ten in June of 1907. It remained a ten-grade school until 1920 when eleven students graduated from grade twelve.
The administration building was destroyed by fire in 1910. Construction on the new building was begun immediately and without interrupting the school program. It was finished by graduation time of 1911. That building was in service until the new administration building took its place on March 15, 1974. A new girls dormitory was opened in 1967, and a new boys dormitory was completed in 1969. The food service complex was opened in 1971. Then in 1999, we opened the doors to our new Physical Education Fitness Center complex. From a one-building establishment, Cedar Lake Academy became a multi-building plant. Through the years a variety of industries provided work for the students. Some of these included a school farm, the Butler Food Company, Rhodes Bake-n-Serve, Cedar Lake Mill and Cedar Lake Academy Industries. The dignity of labor was always an integral part of the school’s philosophy.
Adelphian Academy was founded on September 22, 1904, when at its annual meeting, the Seventh-day Adventist East Michigan Conference resolved to “take immediate steps to raise $5,000 for the purpose of establishing an academy”. A farm near Holly was purchased, and the school was started immediately. They opened in January of 1905. Six students were enrolled and attended classes in the farmhouse. Professor and Mrs. J.G. Lamson, who were also the founders of Cedar Lake Academy, were the first teachers. By the end of the first year, the enrollment had reached seventeen.
For the first full school year the farmhouse was used as the home for the girls and some faculty members. A nearby farmhouse was rented for the boys dormitory, and a temporary building was erected for classrooms and offices. Because this building was covered with tar paper, it was known as the “Black Chapel”.
In February of 1906, the rented home burned down. The boys were forced to crowd into the attic of the “Black Chapel” for the remainder of the school year. By the Fall of 1906, the two new buildings were ready for occupancy. The main building housed a chapel, classrooms, offices and a boys dormitory on the third floor. The girls dormitory included a kitchen, dining-room and guest rooms.
Adelphian Academy was a ten-grade school until 1914, when the 11th grade was added. By 1917, the 12th grade status had been reached.
The farm was the main industry of the school until 1927, when a woodworking industry, begun by Professor John Z. Hottel, became the biggest employer on campus. The operation began in an unused chickenhouse, and by the end of the first year, $20,000 worth of garden trellis had been sold.
Grand Ledge Academy opened its doors in the Fall of 1958, with 83 secondary students and 18 faculty and staff. Principal Ralph P. Bailey, gave direction to the fledgling school as it struggled through its beginning years. Elder G.C. Hutches, Michigan Conference President, gave key leadership to the formation of this newest conference boarding academy.
The school was placed on the campmeeting campground, so the buildings and grounds could be more fully utilized. On the west side of the Cafeteria, a little bakery was attached and the girls dormitory and the Chapel were used during campmeeting. There was no gymnasium, so many of the activities, including graduations, took place in the auditorium. On Sunday, October 1, 1967, the girls returned from a Scott Lake outing to find their dorm destroyed by fire and belongings either burned, dirty or soaked. Through tears they sang their school song, “We Pledge To Thee . . . A Never Failing Loyalty”.
On February 25, 1968, the voting constituents of the Michigan Conference decided that they could no longer afford to subsidize three boarding schools, so it was voted to close Grand Ledge Academy as a boarding school at the end of that school year.
From 1968 to 1982, the local churches took up the challenge and ran Grand Ledge Academy as a day academy. At the beginning of this era, a new gymnasium was added to the campus and was used as a teen center during campmeeting.
In 1982, Grand Ledge Academy consolidated with Lansing Elementary School and Grand Ledge Elementary School to become Grand Ledge Adventist Academy. The last secondary school graduation was held in 1985 with two students graduating.
From 1985 to 1989, the school operated as a ten-grade school and entered its final phase with another name change, Mid-Michigan Adventist Academy. With the sale of the campground, both institutions came to an end leaving many fond memories. When Adelphian Academy and Cedar Lake Academy merged to form Great Lakes Adventist Academy, there was wide support to include Grand Ledge in all alumni and heritage functions. Thus GLAA has rich and varied traditions to support it.
GLAA is a Seventh-day Adventist boarding high school owned and operated by the Michigan Conference Association of Seventh-day Adventists for the purpose of educating its youth. Because Seventh-day Adventists accept the Bible as the Word of God and the writings of Ellen White as divine revelation, GLAA desires to follow the counsel therein by offering its students a program that strives for balance among the spiritual, intellectual, physical and social aspects of life. Through a correct knowledge of God and through fellowship with Him in study and service, each student is encouraged to develop a likeness of their Creator.
“It is the work of true education...to train the youth to be thinkers, and not mere reflectors of other men’s thoughts . . . True education means more than the pursual of a certain course of study. It means more than a preparation for the life that now is. It has to do with the whole being, and with the whole period of existence possible to man. It is the harmonious development of the physical, the mental, and the spiritual powers. It prepares the student for the joy of service in this world and for the higher joy of wider service in the world to come.” (Education, 13, 17)
The Seventh-day Adventist educational program gives primary emphasis to spiritual development, but at the same time, provision is made for high achievement in the realm of the common. GLAA desires to prepare youth for effective citizenship in this world and for rewarding citizenship in the world to come. The objectives of this school are:
• Religious Objectives:
a. To present Jesus Christ as a personal Savior whom youth can know personally.
b. To assist students in understanding he Bible as the basis for faith and to understand the Spirit of Prophecy as God’s special message to His remnant church.
c. To lead students to adopt the philosophy and standards of Seventh-day Adventists as their mode of life.
d. To develop a sense of loyalty to and vigor for the mision of Christ to carry the gospel to all the world.
• Intellectual Objectives:
a. To provide students with the understanding of the religious, historical, political, social, scientific, aesthetic and economic forces that shape contemporary life.
b. To aid students in developing intellectual excellence to think and act effectively.
c. To encourage mastery in educational effort, both in gathering knowledge and in the use of the tools of learning.
d. To develop a mental discipline which includes faithfulness to all responsibilities and appointments.
• Vocational Objectives:
a. To assist students in choosing and preparating for vocational, technical or professional occupations making them effective, contributing employees or self-employed workers.
b. To enhance respect for the dignity of labor thus enabling students to develop responsibility toward economic values.
c. To teach students to strive for excellence in workmanship in whatever task they are assigned, to develop common sense, creativity, initiative, self-reliance, resourcefulness and reliability through work experience.
• Social Objectives:
a. To develop an appreciation for mankind based on the values of Christ’s teachings, and to develop a respect for all people as worthy of respect and friendship.
b. To develop a high regard for the institution of family as God’s plan and means to strengthen, preserve and enrich the church, the community and the nation.
c. To encourage students to practice and uphold wholesome social standards in all their relationships.
d. To develop civic responsibility to country as a nation established under God.
• Health Objectives: (Physical/Mental)
a. To encourage students to develop both the mind and the body as gifts received from our loving Creator God.
b. To encourage students to practice temperance in all the aspects of life.
c. To help students to understand what true recreation is and how Christians can make choices to please God and themselves.
At GLAA, our goal is to graduate “thinking and practicing Christians”. Therefore, we believe Christian service is an essential part of the total academic program. GLAA provides opportunity for service and has built these various opportunities into its program through community projects, nursing home visits, feeding the homeless, Bible study, and participation in spiritual programs.
GLAA’s high ideals and objectives encouarge the attendance of young people who are in agreement with the standards of Chrisian education and who will cheerfully live in harmony with the principles of the school. Such students will have the opportunity to develop intellectually, morally and physically. Membership in the Seventh-day Adventist Church is not required, but it is understood that everyone who seeks admission pledges to observe the regulations. Prospective students must either submit evidence of successful completion of previous grades or their equivalent. All accounts with the former school should be settled.
The Seventh-day Adventist Church, in all of its church schools, accepts students of any race to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded or made available to students at its schools, and makes no discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnic background, country of origin, or gender in the administration of educational policies, applications for admission, scholarships or loan programs and extra-curricular programs.
Students desiring to attend GLAA must fill out an application form and secure three receommendations for the Admissions Committee’s review. All admission forms are available at our website at “glaa.net” or by writing to the Director of Admissions, Great Lakes Adventist Academy, P.O. Box 68, Cedar Lake, MI 48812-0068.
Following the committee’s decision, the student will receive an acceptance letter.
• Attendance: Attendance at GLAA is a privilege not a right. To safeguard the scholastic and moral atmosphere, the academy reserves the right to request withdrawal of any student whose presence is deemed detrimental. Specific charges may/may not accompany the request for such withdrawal.
• Regulations: By signing the application blank, the student pledges to observe GLAA regulations and to live in harmony with its ideals and purposes. Students are also expected to abide by any announced regulation during the school year, which may/may not be printed in the school bulletin/ handbook.
• Searches: Administration reserves the right to search a student’s room and/or locker with/without the student’s presence or permission.
• Student Questioning: Administration reserves the right to question a student about their behavior or program at any time without parental consent or presence. Refusal on the part of a student to respond to questioning by school personnel can result in suspension or dismissal.
RIGHT TO APPEAL
Academic policies are generated through the Academic Standards Committee and approved by the staff. Administrative policies are generated through the Administrative Committee and approved by the staff. Dormitory policies and procedures are generated by the deans and approved by the Administrative Committee.
Disciplinary problems are resolved according to procedures outlined in the student handbook. A conference will be arranged with parents and administration should it be requested by parents to gain understanding and/or to ask questions about a decision or policy. In the case of a decision made by an individual teacher, the decision may be appealed in person to: (1) the teacher and/or (2) the vice principal or principal. Policies or judgments rendered by committees may be appealed in writing to the chairman of the committee. If the situation remains unresolved, the parent/guardian may appeal in writing to the academy’s operating board or through the Superintendent of Education at the Michigan Conference.