Lingles, Vigran Family Foundation inducted to prestigious IU Presidents Circle

September 8th, 2014

Paul and Patricia Lingle and the Vigran Family Foundation have been recognized for their philanthropy, strong support and dedication to Indiana University East. Both were inducted to the IU Presidents Circle August 29 at a ceremony held in Bloomington, Ind.PresidentsCircle

Indiana University inducted 194 individuals into its most prestigious donor recognition society, the Presidents Circle, which honors individuals whose lifetime giving to IU has reached $100,000. IU President Michael A. McRobbie and IU Foundation President and CEO Dan Smith presided over the ceremony.

Established in 1992, the Presidents Circle honors Indiana University’s most generous donors. New Presidents Circle members were presented with a personalized medallion cast with a portion of the original carillon bells that once rang in the IU Bloomington Student Building. In addition, their names were added to the honor wall in the Indiana Memorial Union.

Paul and Patricia Lingle are dedicated to IU East and have given their time, counsel and financial support to further the campus and east central Indiana.

Paul Lingle is president of Lingle Real Estate, and is a well-known in business and community leader in Wayne County. In 2012, he received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from IU East, recognizing his three-part formula for a strong community: a good health system, a vibrant arts scene, and outstanding educational services.  He is also a member of the IU East Board of Advisors.

Paul and Patricia Lingle established the Lingle Scholars Program at IU East in 2005 to help keep the best and brightest students in Wayne County. The four-year scholarship is offered to incoming freshmen enrolled in the IU East Honor’s Program. Additionally, the Lingles have supported IU East through the Lingle Family Foundation, which is led by Paul, Pat and their two daughters, Julie Lingle Gardner and Laura Lingle Luth.

Stanley Vigran was a lifelong resident of Richmond, Ind. He was involved in many civic projects, and he was especially instrumental in establishing Indiana University East and is considered one of the founders of the institution. He believed strongly that the campus had a tremendous capacity to drive significant, long-term economic growth. He served as a member of the Wayne County Foundation Board.

Stanley Vigran created the Vigran Family Foundation to support causes in education, religion and the arts. The Vigran family continues to run the foundation today. Gary and Ross Vigran are active participants in choosing organizations and projects to fund through the foundation.

In 2011, the Vigran Family Foundation made a significant contribution to IU East and Reid Hospital & Health Care Services to create and support a medical education program. The partnership, in collaboration with the Indiana University School of Medicine, provides an opportunity for IU medical students to complete their third- and fourth-year clinical clerkships in Richmond.

About the IU Foundation
Founded in 1936, the IU Foundation maximizes private support for IU by fostering lifelong relationships with key stakeholders and providing advancement leadership and fundraising services for campuses and units across the university.

Today, the foundation oversees one of the largest public university endowments in the country with a market value of nearly $1.7 billion. In fiscal year 2013, IU received $305.9 million in support from the private sector. IU is consistently ranked among the top four of Big Ten universities in annual voluntary support.


Photo Cutline: (Left to Right) Rob Quigg, IU East Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe, Paul Lingle, Patricia Lingle, and Gary Vigran

IU East students to exhibit artwork, research from Argentina study abroad trip

September 8th, 2014

Indiana University East students who studied abroad in Argentina this past May as part of a civilization and culture online course will exhibit their projects at the university’s Room 912, located at 912 E. Main Street in Richmond, Ind. The exhibit will be on display from September 13 to October 15 as part of Hispanic Heritage Month.

Twelve students visited cities including metropolitan Buenos Aires and went horseback riding on a gaucho farm. The students toured the subtropical rain forest of Iguazú. All students completed a research project while there, May 17-24.


Dianne Moneypenny, assistant professor of World Languages and Cultures at IU East, said the students will present their artwork and research from the trip to the community. She said students chose an area of research and then visualized this research with a fine arts piece instead of a traditional paper. The exhibit includes pottery, installation pieces, paintings, sculpture, and more.

Moneypenny said study abroad opportunities are important for students.

“The student feedback on the trip was fantastic. The trip enhanced their classroom learning; in fact the experiences on the ground far surpassed anything I could have attempted in the classroom,” Moneypenny said.

She mentioned that some of the students had never flown, never left the country, and had never been in a taxi before the study abroad course.

“Many now feel confident traveling abroad on their own and, by the end of the trip, some even considered seeking employment internationally after graduation.  That simply would not have even been on their radar before having this experience.  It was so rewarding to witness as an educator,” Moneypenny said.

Jennifer Perkins, a student at IU East completing her communications degree online, said she wanted to go on this trip to help her understand another culture.  As a high school student, Perkins had traveled to England while studying British literature and found the experience beneficial to be immersed in the culture she learned about.

“The trip to Argentina allowed me to use knowledge I have gained from numerous classes while enrolled at IU East.  Not only was I able to see and respect the history and the land from the course connected to the trip, but I also practiced my Spanish from the two semesters I have taken, worked on my nonverbal communication skills when the Spanish failed me, and relied heavily on my cultural communication information,” Perkins said.

Perkins said as a communications major, she focused on nonverbal communication while in Argentina.

“I listened to the rate of speech, looked at how close or far individuals stood from one another in various settings, paid attention to the volume of speech, and noted various gestures,” Perkins said.

Teddy Criswell of New Castle, Ind., said he wanted to go on the trip to improve his Spanish. He has taken the foreign language course in high school and college, but wanted to experience speaking and hearing Spanish in everyday life. Also, he said he is a vivid outdoorsman and he wanted to visit the wingshooting capital of the world, Argentina.

While in Argentina, Criswell studied the country’s law enforcement.

“My project is about the presence of law enforcement in Argentina. I looked at the cops and how they are different and similar to ours here in the USA. The reason I chose this was because I am a criminal justice major and it fit in well with what I am studying,” Criswell said.

In Argentina, students toured Buenos Aires including the Plaza de Mayo, home to Casa Rosada, the Metropolitan Cathedral, where Pope Frances practiced as well as his modest apartment building located next door, toured Eva Peron’s grave and took a Tigre River delta cruise.  They attended a Tango show to learn the history of the dance and took Tango lessons.

In Iguazú the class group went to a rainforest animal rehabilitation center and to the point where Paraguay, Brazil, and Argentina meet.

“We hiked 10 miles through the rainforest to Iguazú falls, the widest waterfalls in the world.  We even did a boat ride that showered us with the falls’ water!  Ponchos were for naught,” Moneypenny said. “The students loved the food, particularly the steak.  At the gaucho meal, we received five different meats: sausage, blood sausage, chicken, thin steak, and an inch thick steak. We wondered when the meats would end.”

Moneypenny said the travel course was possible because of the support received from the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, the International Studies Committee including Executive Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs Larry Richards, Vice Chancellor of Administration and Finance Dan Dooley, Interim Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences Ross Alexander, Director of Financial Aid and Scholarships Sarah Soper, Star Johnson in the Office of Administration and Finance, and scholarships from Robert Starr Jordan and Eleanor Turk.

IU East reaches historic record fall enrollment with over 4,500 students

September 4th, 2014

Indiana University East has another record-breaking enrollment with 4,573 students enrolled for the fall 2014 semester, up from 4,456 last fall.FallEnrollment20141

This is the seventh consecutive fall the campus has experienced historic enrollment growth. Since fall 2007, IU East’s headcount enrollment has doubled.

IU East’s fall headcount of 4,573 represents a 2.6 percent increase compared to last year.

Students are enrolled in 42,050 credit hours this fall, a 3.8 percent increase over last year.

This fall’s percentage growth in headcount and credit hour enrollment is the largest among all IU campuses.

“This is a very exciting time to be at IU East. We have many projects going on right now – including the renovation of the quad area and a new collaborative classroom – that will enhance the overall educational and campus life experience for all of our students,” Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe said.

“The incoming freshman class is our largest bachelor’s degree seeking class in the campus’ history, demonstrating that more students in the region select IU East as the school of choice. We are proud to serve eastern Indiana and western Ohio, as well as the nation and the world, by providing an affordable, high-quality Indiana University degree.”

The new freshmen class at IU East is also the most diverse and most academically qualified that the campus has ever enrolled.

Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Larry Richards said more people are recognizing the value of a college education, both bachelor’s degree and master’s degree education, as well as post-secondary and post-graduate certificates, and are persisting to graduation.

“That we are able to increase our enrollments despite graduating a substantially larger number of students every year for the past five years is gratifying and a testament to the work and determination of all of our faculty, staff and students, as well as the efforts of the general public in continuing to emphasize the importance of advanced education,” Richards said.

Among degree-seeking students, enrollment increased 19.5 percent for Hispanic students and 9.2 percent for African-American students. Students enrolled this fall represent 41 states, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, 15 foreign countries, Hong Kong, and various military locations.

Classes started at IU East on August 25. Official enrollment numbers were released by Indiana University on September 3.

IU East’s freshmen class largest, most diverse, highest qualified to date

September 3rd, 2014

Indiana University East’s incoming freshmen class is the largest, most diverse and highest academically qualified group of new bachelor’s degree seeking students ever.FreshmenEnrollment2014

IU East has 413 freshmen enrolled for classes this fall, compared to 404 incoming freshman in fall 2013. The second highest incoming class enrolled 411 students.

The incoming class consists of 34.2 percent more students coming with Academic Honors from their high schools than last fall, a significant increase from 117 to 157. The number of 21st Century Scholars in the class also increased, from 108 to 134, a 24.1 percent increase.

In addition, U.S. students of color increased 14.3 percent over last year, including an increase of 30 percent in Hispanic/Latino students and 75 percent in African-American students.

Executive Vice Chancellor Larry Richards said, “While the actual number of additional students is not particularly large, the percentage increases represent growth that is going in the right direction at a time when the number of high school graduates in the region has been declining. That the number of students in the freshmen class who graduated from their high school with Academic Honors is substantially larger than last year is encouraging and indicates that more and more students are selecting IU East as their college of choice.”

Overall, IU East experienced another record-breaking enrollment with 4,573 students enrolled for the fall 2014 semester, a 2.6 percent increase compared to the same time last year. Students are enrolled in 42,050 credit hours this fall, a 3.8 percent increase over last year.

This is the seventh consecutive fall that IU East has experienced historic enrollment growth. Since fall 2007, IU East’s headcount enrollment has doubled.

Enrollment figures are not official until confirmed by the President of Indiana University.

IU East to offer bachelor’s degree completion program for Ivy Tech applied science graduates

August 25th, 2014

The Indiana Commission for Higher Education has approved the Bachelor of Applied Science (B.A.S.) degree program for five Indiana University regional campuses, including IU East, IU Kokomo, IU Northwest, IU South Bend and IU Southeast. The joint degree program, the first of its kind in the state of Indiana, will allow thousands of Hoosiers with an Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree to pursue a four-year degree without losing hard-earned credits. Furthermore, the regional accrediting body for these campuses has approved the delivery of the program online through a consortium of four of the campuses—IU East, IU Kokomo, IU Northwest and IU Southeast.

At IU East, the B.A.S. will initially be offered through the School of Business and Economics. Dean David Frantz said, “We are excited to have another baccalaureate degree option in the region that supports students who wish to develop further a mix of practical skills, personal communication skills and basic organizational management skills, beyond the technical and specialized skills they acquired in their associate degree programs.”

The new program will build on the university’s relationship with Ivy Tech Community College. In particular, the program guarantees A.A.S. graduates from Ivy Tech Community College that they can complete a bachelor’s degree with 60 credit hours or less of additional bachelor’s level course work. About 5,000 A.A.S. students graduate each year from Ivy Tech Community College, many of whom wish also to earn a bachelor’s degree that will support their advancement to managerial or supervisory positions, many of which require or prefer a bachelor’s degree. The new degree opportunity could benefit many students who earn their A.A.S. at Ivy Tech’s Richmond campus each year.

The B.A.S. degree aligns with the mission of regional campuses—namely, to promote educational attainment and economic development by providing a pathway to high-quality bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

Students completing the B.A.S. will earn 120 credit hours of which up to 64 credit hours can be transferred from an accredited associate of applied science program. In addition to general education classes, students will choose a program track, in either health care management or a personalized track; the personalized track will allow students to develop an area of career interest, like entrepreneurship, marketing, communications or human resources. Graduates of the two year program will be able to apply their B.A.S. degree to a variety of career paths, including hospital administration, general supervision or entry-level management, as well as some human resources, marketing and related functions.

Though the B.A.S. is a new degree for the state of Indiana, it is a nationally-recognized degree which is currently available at public universities in Minnesota, Arizona, Missouri, and Texas, among others.

IU East Executive Vice Chancellor Larry Richards explained, “The regional campuses of Indiana University engaged in an unprecedented collaboration to make possible an educational opportunity not previously available in Indiana. The tens of thousands of Ivy Tech graduates state-wide with associate of applied science degrees now have an avenue to a bachelor’s degree they can earn with no more than 60 credits of additional course work.”

For more information about the Bachelor of Applied Science degree at IU East, contact School of Business and Economics Dean David Frantz at (765) 973-8337 or the IU East Office of Admissions at (765) 973-8208.

IU East, WTA commemorate agreement for online education

August 15th, 2014

Indiana University East and the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) celebrated a successful first-year partnership on Sunday, August 10. The WTA and IU East commemorated the partnership with a plaque in recognition of the exclusive educational agreement for players during the Western & Southern Open tournament at the Lindner Family Tennis Center held just north of Cincinnati, August 9-17.

“We are honored and pleased to continue our partnership with the WTA as the primary provider for baccalaureate online degree completion programs,” IU East Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe said.WTA2014

Women’s Tennis Benefits Association (WTBA) Chair Lisa Grattan said, “There is a buzz among the players about the online educational opportunities now available through IU East. The WTA and players are excited about this partnership.”

Currently, 15 of the world’s top 200 players are enrolled in IU East’s online degree completion programs. WTA players have been enrolled at IU East since the spring 2013 term, including internationally-known tennis star Venus Williams, who is pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.

IU East online degree programs offer the high quality of an Indiana University degree to students throughout Indiana, nationally and internationally.

IU East offers 10 options for students to complete their bachelor’s degree online in English with an emphasis in Technical and Professional Writing, Mathematics, Natural Science and Mathematics with a Mathematics Concentration, Communication Studies, Business Administration, Criminal Justice, Political Science, Psychology, General Studies, and an RN to BSN Mobility Option. IU East also offers a Graduate Certificate in Composition Studies and a Graduate Certificate in Mathematics.

Founded in 1973, the WTA is the global leader in women’s professional sport with more than 2,500 players representing 92 nations. For more information on the WTA, visit

For more information about IU East’s online degree programs, visit For information about admission, contact Lori Current at 800-959-3278 extension 208 or email Information is also available online at

Photo: (Front row, left to right) IU East Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe, Stacey Allister CEO WTA, Lori Current, assistant director of Admissions at IU East, Molly Vanderpool, director of Admissions at IU East. (Back row, left to right) Lisa Gratton, WTBA chair, IU East Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Larry Richards, and Vanessa Webb, WTA Board of Directors and Player Class Director.



IU East introduces Joe Griffin as new Athletic Director

August 14th, 2014

Joe Griffin has been named the Director of Athletics at Indiana University East, the school announced July 22.Joe Griffin1

“We welcome Joe to Red Wolf Nation,” said IU East Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe. “Joe has a proven track record of success and growth at an NAIA institution. We are pleased to have someone with Joe’s level of expertise in so many areas leading our team at IU East as we continue the growth of our athletics program.”

Griffin comes to IU East from Simpson University, where he served as Athletic Director for the past seven years. Simpson is an NAIA program in Redding, California.

“IU East has had an excellent start in NAIA athletics,” Griffin said. “I want to continue that excellence and grow it even more. I look forward to building on what has been built already.”

Griffin oversaw the addition of six intercollegiate sports teams (four of them NAIA programs) at Simpson in a five-year span. The school increased its number of student-athletes by 100 during Griffin’s tenure, a 71 percent increase.

“Joe did a tremendous job in changing the landscape of our athletic department at Simpson University,” said Derrick Pringle, the assistant athletic director, women’s basketball coach and sports information director at Simpson. “He will be missed dearly, and we as an athletic department are excited for his new position at Indiana University East.”

Don Ott, commissioner of California Pacific Conference of which Simpson is a member, added, “Joe’s impact on the Cal Pac cannot be understated. He is a man of character, a terrific leader, an advocate for student-athletes, and a leader of coaches. I’m glad to also call him a good friend. IU East picked up a great man. We will miss him.”

Griffin was athletic director at Dallas Christian College and Atlanta Christian College (now Point University) prior to his time at Simpson.

Griffin has head coaching experience at the collegiate level in women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball, soccer and golf. His 1999-2000 men’s basketball team at Atlanta Christian College won the NCCAA Division II national championship.

Griffin earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Behavioral Science from Cedarville University. He earned a Master of Education in Physical Education with emphasis on Sports Management from Georgia State University.

Griffin already has ties to the Richmond area. Griffin’s wife, Carla, graduated from nearby National Trail High School (Ohio). Griffin was a men’s basketball assistant coach at Earlham College during the 1993-94 school year. He also worked for Preble County Educational Services during that school year.

“We’re looking forward to getting there and getting started,” Griffin said. “We’re excited and looking forward to being part of the Richmond and IU East community.”

Griffin will begin his duties at IU East on Aug. 18.

IU East teams have qualified for seven national tournaments and won nine league championships since joining the NAIA in 2007. IU East has been an NAIA Champions of Character Institution every year since joining the NAIA.

IU East Hispanic Culture Fair is Feb. 22

August 12th, 2014

Indiana University East welcomes the community to join the “Viva! Hispanic Culture Fair” from noon to 3 p.m. on Saturday, February 22, in Hayes Hall. Celebrate Hispanic culture with dance, music, games, arts and crafts, and a variety of interactive learning stations.

The event is free. Children are welcome with an accompanying adult.

IU East students will host this special event, in celebration of Girls Scouts of America “World Thinking Day.”

Pick up your passport and follow Rufus, the Lobo Rojo, as you travel the world. Play Bingo in Mexico (Lotería), see the Nazca geoglyphs in Peru, join a puppet show, make a flag from a Spanish-speaking country, design your own castanets, learn the Flamenco with Dolka, watch international short films, and dance to a live band.

For more information call (765) 973-8470 or email

IU East’s Danielson Learning Center Celebrates 15th Anniversary: Alumni share their experiences at the Henry County campus

August 6th, 2014

Indiana University East is celebrating the 15th anniversary of the Danielson Learning Center with an open house from 4-7 p.m. on Thursday, August 7. The Danielson Center is located at 300 Trojan Lane in New Castle, Ind.

The open house will celebrate the center’s accomplishments and reaffirm IU East’s dedication to provide services and promote postsecondary education in Henry County. The mission of the Danielson Center is to help improve the county’s economic viability and quality of life by coordinating and expanding local resources.

IU East alumni Brock Davis, Trevor Jones, Kenneth A. Ritchie II and Michelle White share their stories on how the Danielson Center helped them to achieve their academic and professional goals close to home.

Brock Davis, ’14, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration
Davis, received his degree in business administration while he worked full-time at Ameriana Bank and is now the vice president of Retail Operations. He said he learned from instructors who worked in the area they were teaching, making his educational experience more like real life experience.BrockDavis

“As a working student I wanted to learn from experienced professionals and not just a textbook,” Davis said.

Trevor Jones, ’08, Bachelor of Social Work
Since high school, Jones knew he wanted to help others. At the time, he was a junior volunteering for a peer facilitating program that mentored elementary school students.TrevorJones

“That is when I discovered the calling to make a difference and impact others in a positive way,” Jones said.

The New Castle native chose to attend Indiana University East following his high school graduation. In particular, he decided to take his courses at the Danielson Learning Center because of its convenient location close to home. His mother, Sandra Jones, is also an IU East graduate and attended classes at the Danielson Center. She earned her Bachelor of Social Work degree in 2001.

Jones said that the experience he had while a student at the Danielson Center is one that made an impact.

“Every semester was a surprise. Each one brought new challenges. I got to discover how strong of a person I was,” Jones said. “I was able to grow into my own skin and learn how to see the bigger picture in everyday life situations.”

Kenneth A. Ritchie II, ’09, Bachelor of Science in Biology
Ritchie, was an undergraduate with a full-time schedule in and out of the classroom. During the day, he worked full-time at Henry County Hospital as a radiology technologist. Following his shift, he would drive three miles across New Castle to the Danielson Learning Center for evening classes in order to complete his biology degree.KenRitchie

Today, Ritchie is in his third year of the Master of Physician Assistant Studies program at Butler University. He will graduate with his master’s degree in May 2015. As a physician assistant, Ritchie will be able to provide medical services, care and treatment to patients.

“I worked as a radiology technologist specializing in CT and MRI for many different years and decided that I wanted to be more involved in the patient’s care and treatment,” Ritchie said.

Once Ritchie completes his master’s degree, he plans to work in New Castle.

Michelle White, ’06, Bachelor of Art in Fine Arts
The Danielson Learning Center made a difference in White’s life. White enrolled at the New Castle campus six years after graduating high school. She had grown up in Henry County, 15 miles from the center. As a single mother, in addition to working two jobs, the local campus was the most conducive option for her to pursue a bachelor’s degree.MichelleWhite

“The Danielson Center offers small class sizes, and a closer atmosphere than a large campus. The classes are small enough that the professors know their students by name, and easily recognize if there are areas where the student struggles.  The classes were small and engaging, and professors were able to spend more individual time with their students,” White said.

Once White graduated with her B.S. in Fine Arts and a Minor in Creative Writing, she went on to earn her M.B.A. from Indiana Wesleyan University. She taught business courses at the Danielson Center in the evenings, including a marketing class and a computer class. She worked as a treasurer for Charles A Beard Memorial School Corporation for 14 years and she was  elected to the district’s School Board of Trustees in 2012.

“All through high school, I was business oriented.  I always knew I would work in business, probably in an office somewhere.  Though I eventually went back for my M.B.A., I spent my undergrad years exploring a completely new side of myself that I didn’t even know existed,” White said. “I can’t imagine how different my life may have been had I not made that decision to go back to school at the Danielson Learning Center in New Castle.”

About the Danielson Learning Center
The Danielson Learning Center promotes post secondary education in Henry County to improve its economic viability and quality of life by coordinating and expanding local resources. The Danielson Center, located at 300 Trojan Lane in New Castle, is one of Indiana University East’s off-campus locations.

The Danielson Learning Center was founded by a group of Henry County residents who realized the need for higher education within the county. This group has since formed as the Danielson Education Council, Inc. The vision is to provide all Henry County residents access to opportunities that will enable them to reach their post secondary educational potential.

IU East’s Danielson Learning Center Celebrates 15th Anniversary Aug. 7

August 6th, 2014

Indiana University East is celebrating the 15th anniversary of the Danielson Learning Center with an open house from 4-7 p.m. on Thursday, August 7. The Danielson Center is located at 300 Trojan Lane in New Castle, Ind. The center opened in 1999.DanielsonCenter2014

The open house will celebrate the center’s accomplishments and reaffirm IU East’s dedication to provide services and promote post secondary education in Henry County. The mission of the Danielson Center is to help improve the county’s economic viability and quality of life by coordinating and expanding local resources.

Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe said, “The partnership between IU East and the Danielson Center is a wonderful example of the dedication Henry County has to higher education and the vitality of its community. The community came together 15 years ago to see this venture come to fruition and today we celebrate the accomplishments of the center, its friends, current students and alumni.”

During the celebration, Danny Danielson will deliver remarks at 5:30 p.m. on the history of the Danielson Center. Chancellor Cruz-Uribe will present on the center’s future.

Visitors may tour the building and receive information on the baccalaureate degree programs offered by IU East in New Castle, including General Studies, Business Administration, and the RN to BSN. The center also offers non-credit courses for personal enrichment through continuing education opportunities.

The Henry County Foundation will contribute $5 toward scholarships for each visitor who completes a tour.

The Danielson Center was made possible after a group of residents, now formed as the Danielson Education Council, Inc., saw the need for higher education housed within their community. Danny and Patty Danielson challenged the community to raise money to build the center and the campaign raised $1 million for construction of the center. The first courses were held in fall 1999. There were 159 students enrolled for course work.

Through collaboration, IU East helps to maintain and broaden the scope and quality of Henry County’s employment opportunities and improve the quality of life in the region.