Fifth building groundbreaking, service to community top IU East’s highlights from 2014

December 29th, 2014

For Indiana University East the past year has brought many celebrations and accomplishments including breaking ground for a new building, record-breaking enrollment, opening Room 912, and adding new academic programs.  Here’s a look at the most memorable moments from 2014 for IU East.

Most recently, IU East congratulated its director of the Campus Library Frances Yates. Yates was one of 10 librarians to receive the prestigious Carnegie Corporation of New York/New York Times I Love My Librarian Award in recognition of outstanding community service. The award recognizes those who demonstrate the critical role librarians play in transforming lives and communities through education and lifelong learning. Yates was selected from a pool of 1,000 nominees. The award is administered through the American Library Association.FrancesYates1

The month of November was host to several campus events including the 2014 Homecoming week, November 10-15. Throughout the week IU East welcomed the campus, community and alumni to participate in Homecoming traditions and activities,  including the Student Events and Activities Center Groundbreaking Ceremony, celebrating the addition of the campus’ fifth building. The facility will promote student success through a comprehensive offering of programming in health and wellness, physical education, athletics, student activities and special events. The center is scheduled for completion in 2016.

GroundbreakingDuring Homecoming week, IU East also celebrated the completion of the renovation to its central outdoors space area with a Quad Ribbon Cutting Ceremony. The renovation was designed to provide a more amiable space for campus gatherings and events. This includes improved drainage in the center of campus; added landscaping with a rain garden and new perimeter trees, lit pergola, and replacement of inner sidewalks. Several sculpture pads were installed for future artwork.

IU East honored three individuals for their service to the university and within the community during the Chancellor’s Medallion Dinner, one of the many events held as a part of Homecoming week. The Chancellor’s Medallion honors individuals who have rendered distinguished service to IU East. Honorees included IU East Professor Emeritus Ashton Veramallay, Ph.D., IU East Professor Emerita Jane Vincent, Ed.D. R.N., and James Helms, Chancellor Emeritus of Ivy Tech Community College Southeast.

This year IU East established an Alumni Hall of Fame in recognition and celebration of outstanding alumni of IU East. Jeff Cappa and Kate Hogg were inducted to the Alumni Hall of Fame during the Chancellor’s Medallion Dinner. Inductees into the Alumni Hall of Fame are alumni who have typified the IU East tradition of excellence and brought credit to the campus through their personal accomplishments, professional achievement and leadership and humanitarian service and citizenship.

For the third September in a row, IU East was named as a Military Friendly® School by Victory Media Inc., the premier media entity for military personnel transitioning into civilian life. The list provides service members transparent, data-driven ratings about post-military education and career opportunities. The 2015 Military Friendly Schools® list honors the top 15 percent of colleges, universities and trade schools that are doing the most to embrace America’s military service members, veterans, and spouses as students and ensure their success on campus.

At the start of the fall semester, IU East once again announced a record-breaking enrollment with 4,573 students enrolled for classes. This was the seventh consecutive fall the campus has experienced historic enrollment growth. Since fall 2007, IU East’s headcount enrollment has doubled.

The IU East School of Nursing received approval to offer a third concentration for its Master of Science in Nursing (M.S.N.) program in September 2014. The Family Nurse Practitioner concentration will be available beginning the 2015 spring semester. The program provides registered nurses with advanced practice knowledge, through concentrations in nursing education, nursing administration and now family nurse practitioner.

IU East and the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) celebrated a successful first-year partnership in August 2014. The WTA and IU East partnership is an exclusive educational agreement for players. IU East’s online degree completion 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.WTA2014

The IU East Danielson Learning Center celebrated its 15th anniversary in August 2014. The Danielson Center has been a part of the Henry County community since it opened in 1999 in New Castle. 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.

This past summer, the City of Richmond, Richmond Art Museum and IU East received an Our Town grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Awards were announced in July. Richmond was one of two cities in the state of Indiana to receive an Our Town grant in 2014. The $50,000 grant will help fund a two-year project that will be used to strengthen the community through the arts by establishing a cultural trail throughout Wayne County, home to some of the oldest cultural institutions in Indiana, and will focus on the county’s deep arts and cultural heritage.

In June 12, 2014, Wayne Bank and Trust Co. and the IU East Center for Leadership Development hosted the first annual ATHENA Leadership Award® Dinner. Mary Jo Clark was the recipient of the award, which honors an exemplary leader who has achieved excellence in their business or profession, served the community in a meaningful way and, most importantly, actively assisted women to achieve their full leadership potential.

The university welcomed its largest graduating class to the Alumni Association in May 2014. During the 43rd Commencement Ceremony, IU East conferred 621 baccalaureate and master’s degrees, the most awarded in the campus’ history.

Commencement2014In May, the IU East School of Education was ranked as one of the top public universities producing the most effective teachers in Indiana.  The State Board of Education evaluated first, second, and third-year teachers based on four performance standards: highly effective, effective, improvement necessary, and ineffective. The 2012-2013 school year was the first year for statewide teacher evaluation and this was the first collection of baseline aggregate results. The university had one of the highest percentages of educators who ranked highly effective or effective, although IU East had a smaller pool of graduates included in the study compared to other public and private institutions of higher education. Of the 14 IU East graduates evaluated, 50 percent of its graduates were ranked highly effective and 43 percent were ranked effective.

IU East received final approval from the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools for a Master of Arts in Teaching Mathematics (M.A.T.) in February 2014, is IU East’s sixth graduate program to be added to its academic portfolio since June 2007. IU East’s graduate programs include the Master of Science in Education, Master of Science in Management, Master of Social Work, Master of Science in Nursing, and most recently, the Master of Arts in English.

In January 2014, IU East and the School of Humanities and Social Sciences opened Room 912, located in the center of uptown Richmond at 912 E. Main Street. Room 912 is comprised of an art gallery, classroom, and studio space. IU East classes and events have been hosted there, as well as Richmond Art Museum classes.InterfaithChallenge

IU East’s community-focused projects were shared in the President’s Interfaith and Community Service Campus Challenge Inaugural Report published by the U.S. Department of Education. The report highlighted participating institutions’ activities as part of President Barack Obama’s national initiative that began in 2011 with the goal of providing or expanding opportunities for students to participate in community service with a component of interfaith engagement. IU East is one of 11 universities or colleges in the state of Indiana to participate in the inaugural program. The university joined the program when it began in August 2011 as an initiative to build understanding among diverse communities and contribute to the common good.

IU East received the Wayne County Area Chamber of Commerce Achievement of Excellence, Non Profit, Growth and Expansion award in January 2014. The award recognized IU East’s continuous enrollment growth since fall 2007; the campus’ development of a Master of Science in Management program; and the campus’ plan for a new Student Events and Activities Center and its successful fundraising campaign.

In Red Wolves athletics, Tyler Fangman and Mallory Livingston were named to NAIA All-America teams.

Fangman was named to the NAIA Division II Men’s Basketball All-America honorable mention list, announced in March 2014. Fangman was one of 68 players on the All-America teams. Fangman is IU East’s fourth men’s basketball All-American in the program’s seven NAIA seasons.

Livingston was named to the Tachikara-NAIA Volleyball All-America third team. Selections were announced in December 2014. Livingston was one of 94 players on the All-America list. The top 42 players made the first, second and third teams. Livingston is the fourth IU East volleyball player to earn All-America honors.

The men’s track and field team received the 2013-14 NAIA Buffalo Funds Five Star Champions of Character Team Award in May and announced during the NAIA Track and Field Hall of Fame Luncheon in Gulf Shores, Ala. The NAIA presents Five Star Champions of Character Team Awards for each of the NAIA’s 23 championship sports.

Seth Prince and Dylan Cope advanced to the NAIA Cross Country National Championships, held in November 2014 at Rim Rock Farm in Lawrence, Kan. Prince finished 210th and Cope finished 224th. Prince, a senior, ran the 10th-fastest time in school history in his final IU East cross country race. He holds five of the top 10 times in school history. This year’s championship was Prince’s second consecutive trip to the national meet. He is the only IU East men’s cross country runner to qualify twice. This was Cope’s first year to advance to the national meet. Cope, a sophomore, is also a record holder; he has two of the top 10 times in school history. IU East has sent runners to the national meet in five of the program’s seven seasons. Prince, Cope and freshman Adam Klipstine made the men’s all-conference team. Freshman Grace Yeaton made the women’s all-KIAC team to cap a season in which she ran the two fastest women’s 5K cross country times in IU East history.

IU East is one of 168 colleges and universities recognized with an NAIA Champions of Character Five Star Award for the 2013-14 school year. IU East earned a “Silver” designation on the NAIA’s new three-tiered Champions of Character recognition system, receiving the maximum possible scores in student-athlete outreach, servant leadership opportunities and academic performance. IU East also received the maximum possible score for Champions of Character participation by Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe. The Champions of Character Scorecard measures each institution’s commitment to the NAIA Champions of Character program. Institutions earned points in character training, conduct in competition, academic focus, character recognition and character promotion. Institutions also earned points based on exceptional student-athlete grade point averages and by having minimal to no ejections during competition throughout the course of the academic year. IU East has been named a Champions of Character institution after each of its seven years of NAIA membership.

The women’s basketball program began its inaugural NAIA season (Read Season Preview). The women’s first game was November 1 at Taylor University. The Red Wolves opened the season with a loss, but the special day of firsts far outweighs the score board. (Read Day of Firsts). The women’s basketball team currently owns an 8-6 record.



IU East announces new dean of School of Humanities and Social Sciences

December 22nd, 2014

Ross Alexander is the new dean of the Indiana University East School of Humanities and Social Sciences, beginning January 1, 2015.RossAlexander

“Ross brings with him a wealth of knowledge, leadership and a solution oriented approach to the position of dean. As interim dean and associate vice chancellor, Ross has established a familiarity with the campus, faculty, students, and the community and he is a strong advocate for the school.  I am delighted to welcome him in his new role,” said Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe.

Alexander has been the interim dean since July 2014. He joined IU East in January 2012 as the associate vice chancellor for Academic Affairs. He also served as the dean of Graduate and Extended Education.

The dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences has the administrative responsibility for all aspects of the school, including faculty recruitment, development and evaluation; program development, assessment and improvement; student recruitment, retention and success; budget management and fundraising; and other matters related to the continuing well-being of the school and its faculty, staff and students.

Alexander received his Ph.D. in Political Science with majors in Public Administration and American Politics and a minor in Political Theory from Northern Illinois University. He received his Master of Public Administration from Arizona State University and his B.A. from Beloit College where he majored in Political Science and History.

Before joining IU East, Alexander was the department head of Political Science and Criminal Justice from 2010-2011 and the assistant department head from 2009-2010 for the North Georgia College & State University in Dahlonega, Ga.

Alexander formerly held positions at the university as an associate professor of political science and the co-director of the Quality Enhancement Plan.  Previously, he was a visiting assistant professor of political science at the Dominican University in River Forest, Ill., and an instructor of political science at Northern Illinois University in De Kalb, Ill., where he began as a teaching assistant with the department.



IU East Student News and Notes

December 4th, 2014

IU East students to perform with Choral Concert, Student Recital
Richmond, Ind. — The public is invited to attend the annual Indiana University East Chorale Concert at 7 p.m. on Monday December 8, at Central United Methodist Church, located at 1425 E. Main Street.

The Chorale Concert will feature IU East students and faculty performing favorite holiday songs in both traditional and modern arrangements. The choir is conducted by Robert Williams. Free and open to the public.

The community is also invited to the Student Recital on Tuesday, December 9. Student vocalists, pianists, and other instrumentalists will perform a variety of works including pieces by Chopin, Mozart, Schubert, Debussy, and Rogers and Hammerstein. The recital begins at 7 p.m. and will be in Vivian Auditorium, located in Whitewater Hall. Free and open to the public.

IU East students’ work featured by Sigma Tau Delta International Honor Society
Two Indiana University East student’s creative writing work was chosen to be featured on the Sigma Tau Delta International Honor Society website following the 2014 Convention. Emily O’Brien, of Richmond, Ind., and Chase Eversole, of Connersville, are members of Sigma Tau Delta at IU East and have been active student leaders with the student organization since it was revived on campus in 2012.

O’Brien’s poem, “Saved by Savannah: A Sestina for the Sigma Tau Delta Convention,” was selected as a winning entry for the 2014 Convention Stories Contest. She is an English and history major.

Eversole has been invited to read his poem, “Rustbelt,” which focuses on the Midwestern region, at the upcoming convention. The poem has been accepted to be published online in the Sigma Tau Rectangle. The 2015 International Convention will be held March 18-21 in Albuquerque, N.M. Eversole is an English major. Members of IU East’s Sigma Tau Delta chapter and faculty advisor, Assistant Professor of English Steven Petersheim, will attend the conference.

IU East student receives Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities Midwest Regional Award
Kaleigh Miller, of Richmond, received the Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities Institutional Regional Award for demonstrating leadership at IU East. Miller is junior communications major. She is a member of the Student Activity Advisory Team (SAAT), a student organization that advises and assists with planning and presenting entertainment and programs primarily for the student body of IU East.

Miller was nominated for the award by Rebeckah Hester, director of Campus Life. Hester said Miller was nominated because of her dedication to SAAT and having a passion about seeing events be successful; she has attended three student activities conferences; and she has chaired several student events held on campus such as PJs & DJs, hypnotist Chris Jones, and Six Appeal.

The regional award honors students who are part of a programming organization at APCA member institutions are eligible for the Student of the Year. One student from each of the APCA regions is selected. Those selected from the individual regions are then a finalist for the National Student of the Year. The National Conference will be held March 18-22.

IU East’s Library director receives prestigious national award for outstanding public service

December 3rd, 2014

Indiana University East Director of the Campus Library Frances Yates was one of 10 librarians to receive the prestigious Carnegie Corporation of New York/New York Times I Love My Librarian Award. The award was presented December 2 in New York City.FrancesYates1

Yates was selected from a pool of 1,000 nominees. Each year, 10 individuals are selected to receive the award, which recognizes those who demonstrate the critical role librarians play in transforming lives and communities through education and lifelong learning. Award honorees receive $5,000, a plaque and a travel stipend to attend the awards ceremony and reception in New York City, hosted by The New York Times.

The award is administered through the American Library Association, through its Campaign for America’s Libraries to promote the value of libraries and librarians.

IU East Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe said she is pleased to see Yates recognized for her efforts to provide an environment of learning and service to the community.

“Frances brings experience, creativity and enthusiasm to her profession and to the IU East Library. She strives to make the Library an inviting space for our students, faculty and staff while working tirelessly to improve the services and opportunities needed to enhance every student’s educational experience,” Cruz-Uribe said. “I thank Frances for the many initiatives that she oversees or develops for the betterment and improvement of everyone in the community.”

Yates said her love of libraries began at the preschool storytime at the Highland, Ind., branch of the Lake County Public Library. The branch is where Yates held her first library job; she worked as a shelver.

“Growing up, I lived in a world of books, and it seems natural that I work in a world of reading and learning,” Yates said. “I really want to express my sincere appreciation for all the people who use libraries, who read, and who know how cool it is to be a librarian. Because most librarians I know love doing what they do, in part, because the people they serve love libraries. And it’s certainly an added bonus when someone takes the time to express that love,” Yates said.

Yates joined IU East in July 2009 as the director of the Campus Library. Previously, Yates was a librarian at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Education, specializing in communications, from Purdue University. She received her master’s and specialist degrees in Library and Information Science from Indiana University.

Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Larry Richards said, “I regard Frances to be a leader in mapping out the future of university libraries. While insistent on the role of library as a place, she also recognizes the ubiquity of information and knowledge in the era of the Internet. As a place, a Library needs to provide a friendly, welcoming and helpful environment for all users, a place where they can get the personal attention that they cannot get online, and Frances has done that at IU East. I greatly appreciate her efforts and congratulate her on this award.”

The nomination letter submitted to ALA recognizes several of the initiatives and activities Yates has spearheaded while at IU East, many involving improving the library space and collection and research materials available for students and faculty as well as service-learning programs and projects, leadership and customer service. In recognition of Yates’ contributions to service-learning, she was the recipient of this year’s Campus Spirit of Philanthropy Award during the 2014 Spirit of Philanthropy Luncheon held October 22.

Among Yates’ many noted accomplishments in the award nomination are:

  • Playing an active role in promoting the Library and positioning the department as an integral component to the campus’ strategic plan.
  • Fully committing to the Library mission for providing resources and services that support the academic engagement and research of diverse participants in IU East’s teaching and learning community.
  • Encouraging Library staff to continue professional development and education as well as to serve as mentors by providing students with internships, which has lead to several literacy programs for students grades K-12, and the creation of student-friendly learning spaces including a Library Living Room, providing a comfortable, dorm-room like space for students to study and remain on campus and engaged in between classes.
  • Developing and updating campus collection of learning materials and added numerous e-book collections, streaming videos, and digitization of archival materials and the active “Ask Us!” campaign to promote the diverse and reliable academic resources available for students and faculty.
  • Providing space for and initiating partnerships with the Early College Program, Third Grade Reading Academy, and most recently, Birth to Five to mentor college students working with parent educators to have monthly family literacy events in the Campus Library.
  • Serving as IU East’s representative to Indiana Campus Compact, a role that provides important state-wide awareness of the campus’ service-learning accomplishments.

Associate Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs Ross Alexander said the I Love My Librarian award is well-deserved and exemplifies the innovative efforts and initiatives that Yates has instituted as an academic librarian at IU East.

“Her commitment to providing cutting-edge programs in the library that enrich the learning experiences of our students, faculty, and stakeholders is an inspiration and a model for others in her field and across the academy,” Alexander said. “She cares deeply about our students and the institution. No one works harder than Frances!”

Spotlight: IU East School of Nursing students travel nationally, abroad to gain community nursing skills

December 1st, 2014

Nursing students from IU East stepped outside the campus and into different cultures during three recent real-world journeys.

They immersed themselves into poverty, cultural diversity and community medicine in different areas of the United States.

They presented papers, visited hospital and met with at-risk teenagers in England.

They made eye-opening and life-changing discoveries that aren’t possible without seeing other cultures.

Karen Clark, dean of the School of Nursing, led a trip to Chinle, Ariz., where IU East students administered 1,300 shots and visited historical landmarks. “Students provided the manpower for flu clinics during their time with the Navajo,” Clark said. Cindy Farris, lecturer for the School of Nursing, also facilitated the trip.nursingchinle

The students dealt mainly with children, but they served patients from ages 2 to about 70, some with special needs. “It was a great experience,” Clark said. “A lot of it is very internal … growth as a professional.”

Senior Ashley Hall from Connersville echoed that observation. “The trip not only taught me about other cultures, but about myself as well,” Hall said.

“I can truly say that no clinical experience has ever impacted me the way that Chinle did,” she said.

Other students, traveling with nursing instructor Curtis Bow, made meals for the homeless in Washington, D.C., and interacted with people at the Bowery Soup Kitchen and Shelter of Harlem in New York City. The shelter has 10,000 more clients than there are residents in Wayne County (about 58,000).

Bow also led a visit early this month to England, where 11 students saw how differently medical services are delivered and learned that their studies here can carry international significance.

That trip had significance for the university: It was the first one outside of the United States.

The second is coming this spring, when a group of juniors will head to Belize to receive some real-world experiences in mental-health issues.

“It always is a life-changing experience,” Clark said about the trips.

That was a fact even before her students ever stepped onto the Navajo Reservation: “Four of the eight hadn’t even been on an airplane,” she said.

While in Arizona, the students took time to explore. Students were immersed in the Navajo culture through interaction with native healers, participation in a sweat ceremony, and time in Canyon de Chelly exploring ruins with a native guide.

It’s vital for students — especially those who haven’t ventured very far from the area — to have “opportunities to experience a culture different than their own,” Clark said, one in which they are in the minority. “They can deliver culturally sensitive care and show what community nursing is all about.”

Bow agrees. “They were exposed to so much diversity they can’t see locally,” he said about guiding students on the eight-day trip to Washington, D.C., and New York City.

The students were able to observe that the needy in large metropolitan areas don’t have the access to medical care and the quality of life that is commonplace in east-central Indiana and west-central Ohio.

Students helped pack food and make meal preparations for a central kitchen for the homeless in D.C. They made home visits through Capitol Hill Village, a nonprofit agency that helps senior citizens in a variety of ways — with meals, with rides, with healthcare information and a lot more.nursingstudentsengland

Bow said the experience with the soup kitchen helped disprove stereotypes about some marginalized people. “They are trying their hardest. Many of them are employed. Many have two jobs,” he said. “Yet, they still can’t afford health care and clothes.”

Whatever those people don’t spend on meals, they can spend on other necessities.

The students saw that positive gestures and environments can help build self-confidence.

“Even the smallest amount of kindness can help turn things around,” Bow pointed out.

IU East students have been making trips to Chinle since the late 1990s and the Washington-New York experience was added about five years ago, Clark said.

Bow and his wife, Jennifer Bow, an adjunct instructor for the School of Nursing, accompanied the students to the East Coast and to Great Britain. “I don’t ever get tired of the trips, but they are exhausting,” he said.

The students pay their own way, but financial help is available if needed.

Each trip is different, but they do have commonalities. The overall goal is simply to provide experiences that serve people, provide education, teach about community health and create more well-rounded nurses.

“Part of that is exposure to different cultures and global health,” Clark said. “Some have been landlocked (never traveled that far) … therefore, that focuses their way of thinking.”

One student from past trip was so touched by the experience that she went to work for the Indian Health Service in Alaska after graduating, Clark said.

The trips “give students a sense of social responsibility,” she said, that they can make an impact wherever they work.

The trip to Great Britain showed how health services are handled differently there than in the United States.

For example, Bow said: “Customer service doesn’t resonate as much. The rules and regulations are a lot more dictated by the law,” he said.

Five students discussed their original research project titled “Bringing Sexy Back: sexual activity and the older adult,” on November 7 at the Second Annual Conference on Aging & Society in Manchester. The project data was collected in fall of 2013 in Richmond, when the students were juniors.

The hypotheses, Bow said, is that people are sexually active in their later years. “There were people in the audience who had done similar studies,” he said.

The students were amazed that the 200 attendees represented more than 60 countries. “It wasn’t just nursing; there were economists, lawyers, psychologists and clergymen,” he said.

“A geriatric psychologist from Canada wanted to know what (the students’) thoughts were,” Bow said. “They were enthralled they were talking to a professional who valued their opinions.”

Students also provided health information to groups about hepatitis, hypertension and nutrition and visited a HIV hospital.
They also visited the Florence Nightingale Museum and the Gordon Museum of Pathology.

The students met high-level health-industry workers. They included the president of the nursing trade union, hospital directors and specialists from around the world.

At one meal provided to the students, they were given gifts of watches and items to help them in their nursing careers.
The students discovered new things about transportation as well in England. Bow estimated the students walked 54 miles and they had to figure out how to use mass transit.

Each student brings back something different, Bow said.

“They always have something to say when they come back. They are required to do a reflection on the experience and how they can put in practice what they’ve learned,” he said. “There never are students who say they didn’t learn anything.”

Students who traveled to the Navajo reservation will share their experience at an event scheduled for 3:30 p.m., Tuesday, December 2, in Vivian Auditorium.


 Top Photo: Nursing students tour Canyon de Chelly while in Chinle, Ariz.

Bottom Photo: Nursing students support the 100th anniversary of World War I while in England by wearing poppies.

Herbert Scholar and math student loves personal attention at IU East

November 28th, 2014

Indiana University East was in pretty heady company when Tyler Kennedy considered coming to Richmond to earn a bachelor’s degree in mathematics. TylerKennedy

He applied to only two other places—MIT and Rose-Hulman—for studies in his eventual quest to become an actuarial.

He loved the smaller campus here, the talented staff and the fact that he could get more individualized attention.

He also loved the fact that he was named a Herbert Presidential Scholar.

So did his parents, Samantha Kennedy and Tim Kennedy.

“It is an amazing honor,” Samantha Kennedy said.

Kennedy also feels honored and humbled: “I really didn’t know it was coming. It’s very nice.”

The scholarship pays for more than a university education for Kennedy and the 69 other awardees in the Indiana University system. They all receive a new laptop computer and a stipend to study overseas during their junior or senior years.

Kennedy is looking forward to visiting Germany with his stipend and possibly more places around the world after he earns his bachelor’s degree – and then a master’s degree.

“Mathematics has pulled me,” he said. “Working as an actuary offers good security and pay. It would allow me to do things I want to do.”

He believes he gets the best of the extensive Indiana University world by coming to IU East. “A college education is pretty similar across the board. It’s nice at a small institution (such as IU East) that the quality is high,” he said. “It can get you here, there and everywhere else.”

Kennedy was nominated by guidance counselors at Lawrenceburg High School, where he was an honors student and heavily involved in musical endeavors. He served as band captain for three years, played piano for the show choir and also played in the orchestra.

He also found the time to earn an associates degree through Vincennes University, mainly by taking online courses while in high school.

Kennedy makes the 80-minute drive to campus three times a week, but is planning to get an apartment soon near the campus in Richmond. He hopes to work at Whitewater Broadcasting while attending IU East.

He has found IU East to be friendly and inviting. “It’s pretty easy to meet people,” he said.

He’s already developed a connection with Young You, assistant professor in the Natural Science and Mathematics Department. “I am going to work with him on being an actuary,” Kennedy said. “It’s so great to get that personal attention.”

Herbert Scholars are selected for their talents, diversity, interests, academics and leadership. Many also have overcome personal challenges.

Kennedy’s father is a disabled veteran. Being a scholar and taking college-level classes in high school means a financial burden is lifted on his parents.

Samantha Kennedy said she was shocked and amazingly proud when she read the letter announcing Kennedy’s award and discovered what it covered.

“Because he had always done so well academically, we thought it would help. I had no idea it would be a full-blown scholarship,” she said.

Five Stars: IU East earns NAIA “Champions of Character” Distinction

November 26th, 2014

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Indiana University East is one of 168 colleges and universities that will be recognized with an NAIA Champions of Character Five Star Award for the 2013-14 school year, the NAIA announced this fall.Championslogo1-hq

To receive the award, members scored 60 or more points on the NAIA Champions of Character Scorecard.

IU East earned a “Silver” designation on the NAIA’s new three-tiered Champions of Character recognition system. Seventy-two institutions earned “Silver” status.

IU East received the maximum possible scores in student-athlete outreach, servant leadership opportunities and academic performance.

IU East also received the maximum possible score for Champions of Character participation by Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe.

The Champions of Character Scorecard measures each institution’s commitment to the NAIA Champions of Character program. Institutions earned points in character training, conduct in competition, academic focus, character recognition and character promotion. Institutions also earned points based on exceptional student-athlete grade point averages and by having minimal to no ejections during competition throughout the course of the academic year.

IU East has been named a Champions of Character institution after each of its seven years of NAIA membership.

“I am very proud of our athletics program and our student-athletes,” Cruz-Uribe said. “IU East is committed to integrity, and this award reflects this commitment to the ideals of this outstanding NAIA program.”

To learn more about the NAIA Champions of Character Scorecard and Five Star Award visit

IU East presents scholarships for high school students during Counselors’ Breakfast

November 20th, 2014

Indiana University East distributed scholarships to area high school guidance counselors from Indiana and Ohio during its annual Counselors’ Breakfast held November 20 in Whitewater Hall.counselorsbreakfast2014

This is the eighth consecutive year that IU East has hosted the Counselors’ Breakfast. Over 60 guidance counselors attended. This year’s theme centered on Rockefeller Center and New York City.

“We have a great partnership with these counselors,” said Molly Vanderpool, director of Admissions. “These scholarships enable them to reward their high school students for outstanding academic achievements with a significant scholarship.”

Counselors present received scholarship certificates to give to students in their high schools that meet the academic and admission requirements at IU East. Every guidance counselor received vouchers for eight, four-year scholarships ranging from $6,000 to $20,000 to distribute to qualified high school seniors.

This fall semester, IU East continued a record-setting trend in enrollment with 4,573 students enrolled for fall 2014, a 2.6percent increase compared to the same time last year. Since 2007, IU East has doubled its enrollment.

Spotlight: IU East student Piedad Llerena inspires others through her talents

November 19th, 2014

Piedad Llerena moves through life like a perpetual Christmas present: If you take off one wrapping, you’ll find another gift.PiedadLlerena

Take off another wrapping, you’ll find another gift. And then another. And another.

Her gifts are her passion, her perseverance and her positiveness.

“She gives me such a lift,” says IU East Assistant Professor of Fine Arts Carrie Longley.

Llerena’s gifts are teaching and reaching others.

Her gifts are parenting and time-management skills. “My mom is always going, doing something, being a part of different organizations,” says daughter Stephanie Llerena. “For us, it’s normal to see her do everything.”

Everything included holding down two jobs, taking business classes at IU East and tirelessly doing community service. “Other people point out how extraordinary she is,” says Stephanie Llerena. “She always has had time for us and maintained her drive for bettering herself.”

That drive meant there were countless times that Llerena, Stephanie Llerena, and her brother, Anthony Llerena, would all be doing homework together and chatting about their futures at the kitchen table.

They talked about going to college and getting scholarships. They talked about finding the right answers in life. They talked about Llerena’s journey to the United States 31 years ago from Ecuador and her burning quest to help others – and to follow her dreams. “When I moved, I didn’t speak English. But, it always was in my head to get a degree,” Llerena says.

She started on that quest 10 years ago at age 32. She will finish it with a business degree this December.

Stephanie and Anthony would often ride along as their mom sold houses for Lingle Real Estate. Many of her clients are Hispanic.

“I love to work in real estate, to teach people how to buy a home,” Llerena says. “In the future, they will be an investment.”

Piedad would bring them to IU East events because it was important to be supportive of others and to be immersed in an educational environment.

Along with their father, Gustavo, they’d all do volunteer work together. “I have to teach my kids how to be successful in life,” Llerena says. “I have to be an example.”

She is: Stephanie and Anthony watched as their mother worked toward the business degree that she will earn at the end of this semester. “She wanted us to know first-hand how to get there,” Stephanie says.

“She would always have the answers for us when we came looking.”

Now, they are all going to college at the same time. Stephanie is a pursuing her nursing degree at IU East and Anthony is attending Ivy Tech Community College.

Stephanie and Llerena have even taken classes together. “Not many people have that,” jokes Stephanie, who is a junior.

Not many people have the chance to teach a university chancellor how to do something, either.
There’s a back story to that, one that includes passion and dreams and making beautiful things with your hands. It includes finding a new gift inside the box.

Simply put, Llerena has fallen in love with pottery. She reluctantly took a ceramics class to finish her degree, not knowing anything about making pottery. But, it’s become a life’s revelation.

“She is our most dedicated student,” Longley says. “She’s always encouraging, so appreciative and so thankful.”

Llerena created 43 bowls for the sell-out Empty Bowls fundraising event, held Nov. 15.

On the Friday morning before, Llerena helped IU East Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe prepare four bowls for the event that raised around $4,000 for Open Arms Ministries.

“Carrie Longley showed me what to do, then left me in the hands of the students,” Cruz-Uribe said.

Llerena stepped up to help. “She did beautiful bowls and told me I was a good teacher … and I think she is a good student.”

Llerena made a strong impression for more than glazing. “She was very good,” Cruz-Uribe says about Llerena’s calm style and colorful flair for painting the bowls. “The thing that excited me is she went back to school to be a role model for her kids. Now, she’s finding a passion for pottery.”

And for Empty Bowls. “It hit me in a way that touches me,” she says. “It is a way I can use my labor and use my hands to give back.”

IU East sponsored the worldwide program for the first time this year after a recommendation from Longley, who had worked with the program at another college.

Empty Bowls is designed to fight world hunger by making people think about it every time they fill their bowls for a meal. It is an event that touched Llerena. She knows about poverty and hunger in her home country. She goes back to Ecuador periodically to see family.

She desires to help show the women there that they can follow their dreams and succeed. “I am blessed, but I see a lot of people (hurting),” she said. “That makes me think I need to make more bowls. I need to help more people.”

Llerena hoped to buy back a couple of the bowls that she produced, but hers sold out before she could do that. In fact, all of the 250 or so bowls were gone within 45 minutes of the 11 a.m. opening at First Friends Meeting in Richmond.

“I couldn’t believe it,” Llerena said. “I was really happy. Everybody was buying and enjoying themselves. It was exciting to see so many people coming through.”

Llerena is excited about a major event in her life. She will proudly walk in IU East’s annual commencement next May. “That has been my goal,” she says. “But, it’s not an accomplishment just for me.”

It’s for her husband and two children.

It’s for her teachers and and her countries.

It’s for her fellow students and fellow volunteers.

It’s for those who follow their dreams and find their passions.



IU East News and Notes

November 19th, 2014

IU East welcomes new professional staff

Richmond, Ind. — The Indiana University East welcomes new professional staff to campus this fall.

Office of Admissions
Hubie Branstetter, assistant director of admissions, primarily recruits and works with prospective students who are applying for admission to IU East, as well as assists parents and high school guidance counselors with the admissions process.

Branstetter is a 2014 graduate of IU East. He received his Bachelor of Science in Biology and a Minor in Chemistry. He gained experience working in the Office of Admissions while working for admissions as a student worker and as a Student Ambassador and New Student Orientation leader. While at IU East, Branstetter was a member of the Red Wolves men’s golf team and a teaching assistant in the School of Natural Sciences and Mathematics.

School of Natural Science and Mathematics
Logan Halley, advisor, provides provides academic advising and counseling for students as well as assistance to find information on courses, programs and services for students in and coming into the School of Natural Science and Mathematics.

Halley received his Master of Science in College Counseling and Student Development from Azusa Pacific University in Azusa, Calif. and his Bachelor of Arts in Youth Ministry and Adolescent Studies from Bethel College in Mishawaka, Ind. Previously, Halley was an academic specialist at Azusa Pacific University. He also gained experience working with students as a First-Year Experience Programs coordinator at Concordia University-Irvine, Irvine, Calif. and as a coordinator for Student Development and Program Support at Azusa Pacific.

University College
Michael Scott, student coach counselor, assists first-year students with the transition to college in order to foster student success and retention. He also works with the Career and Experiential Learning Coordinator to assist students with career services related concerns.

Scott received his Master of Arts in Student Development Counseling and Administration from Indiana Wesleyan University in Marian, Ind. and his Bachelor of Arts in Family Science from Anderson University in Anderson, Ind.

Before joining IU East, Scott was the Campus Career Outreach coordinator at Anderson University.

Faculty conference presentations, publications, and board appointments
Trudi Weyermann, dean of Distance Education and associate vice chancellor for Teaching and Learning, was invited to present a breakout session with John Gosney, Faculty Liaison UITS, at IUPUI’s Plater Institute on the Future of Learning conference “Excellence in Higher Education: The Role of Online Learning.” The conference was October 23. Her presentation, “How to Get Started,” will discuss getting started and lessons learned in online teaching.

The William M. Plater Institute on the Future of Learning is IUPUI’s annual opportunity to focus on topics important to the future of higher education.

Tim Scales, senior lecturer in the school of business and economics, director of the Center for Entrepreneurship and the Center for Economic Education has received the 10 Years of Service Award from Delta Mu Delta, the International Honor Society in Business. Scales became a member of the society in 2000 and has served as an advisor from 2004-2014.

The IU East chapter has seen significant growth in membership and community involvement and received the awarded top recognition as a Star Chapter on two occasions. Delta Mu Delta is a business honor society that recognizes and encourages academic excellence of students at qualifying colleges and universities to create a DMD community that fosters the well-being of its individual members and the business community through life-time membership.

Scales has joined two boards. He will serve on the local board of directors for Lemonade Day, which is scheduled for May 3, 2015. Lemonade Day is empowering today’s youth to become tomorrow’s entrepreneurs.

Also, he will begin a three-year term as a member of the board of directors for the Academy of Business Research (ABR) in January 2015. The ABR is an international society of scholars and practitioners who exchange ideas and collaborate in a conference setting. In the last decade, ABR has had participants from all 50 states and 49 different countries. The ABR publishes four academic journals. Each journal is listed in Cabells and articles are double blind, peer reviewed.

Additionally, Scales served as the keynote speaker October 16 for the ABR fall conference. His presentation was “Technology, Innovation and Money” and he demonstrated the use of the 3D printer. The printer was housed in Hayes Hall Room 127 and demonstrated on a large screen with a projector from 2,000 miles away via a cell phone app. Scales could control the 3D printer with the app, monitoring, pausing and restarting the machine to make a 10-hour print job.

Carla R. Messer, lecturer in the School of Business and Economics, presented “Six Factors to Consider Before Selecting an Assessment” at the Miami Valley Human Resources Association held November 13 at Sinclair Community College in Dayton, Ohio. Messer discussed various forms of validity in behavioral assessments for hiring and promotion and highlighted the importance of a correlation between assessment results and specific job performance.