Indiana University East will award an Indiana University Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree to former Indiana State Senator Allen E. Paul and to former Indiana State Representative Richard “Dick” Bodiker during its Commencement Ceremony at 6 p.m. tonight (May 13) at the Richmond High School Tiernan Center.
Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie will confer the honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degrees.
The honorary degree will recognize the exceptional leadership and service Paul and Bodiker provided to the campus and greater community.
The honorary degree, the highest academic recognition Indiana University can bestow, is awarded to individuals who demonstrate the highest standards of personal integrity and sincere concern for the public good. In addition, candidates for the honorary degree generally have significant ties to the state of Indiana or to Indiana University. Through this high honor, IU seeks to recognize individuals who may serve as role models for students, faculty, alumni and the people of the state of Indiana.
IU East Chancellor Kathryn Cruz-Uribe said Bodiker and Paul truly exemplify the highest standards of excellence that the honorary degree represents.
“Dick and Allen were true public servants, willing to put aside political agendas and work toward the betterment of our region, our people and this university. They understood the important role IU East plays in our region’s success and the university’s potential to serve as a leader to enhance the intellectual, cultural, and economic vitality of individuals and communities throughout our region,” Cruz-Uribe said.
Paul served District 27 as an Indiana State Senator from 1986 to 2014. Bodiker served as a Representative from 1986 to 2002. Bodiker and Paul championed higher education and conveyed the important role IU East and regional campuses play in encouraging economic development, retaining and recruiting talent and further aiding the overall quality of life of their communities.
Much of IU East’s success is the result of visionaries such as Bodiker and Paul.
Through bi-partisan efforts Paul and Bodiker supported IU East’s growth and helped the campus expand from one building to four buildings between 1989 and 1995. Bodiker and Paul once again collaborated in 1999 when they worked to strengthen the partnership between Ivy Tech Community College and IU East.
In addition to Bodiker’s public service, he has supported IU East as a member of the Chancellor’s Board of Advisors. In recognition of his advocacy and dedication he was awarded the Chancellor’s Medallion in 1992.
Paul served District 27 as an Indiana State Senator from 1986 to 2014. His papers, on his role to help expand IU East, were donated to the Campus Library archive. This helped to establish the Senator Allen Paul IU East Collection that includes government publications, photos, newspaper articles and correspondence.
“Dick and Allen’s bipartisan leadership efforts have been proven true and worthy. Over the years, IU East has become the intellectual, cultural and economic leader the two envisioned. This campus is home to over 550 employees, 4,500 students and 9,000 living alumni. Our growth and impact on this region is a direct result of Dick Bodiker and Allen Paul’s vision,” Cruz-Uribe said.