Indiana University East has had a memorable 2015. The campus experienced another record-breaking year in enrollment and the number of graduates who joined the alumni family, celebrated the graduation of an international tennis star and businesswoman, started construction on its fifth building and remembered the legacy of three campus leaders who passed away.
For IU East the past year has brought many celebrations, accomplishments, and time of reflection. Here’s a look at the most memorable moments from the year for IU East.
Throughout the year, IU East continued to experience record-breaking figures in enrollment and degrees awarded.
Fall 2015 was the eighth consecutive for IU East to have an increase in enrollment, a trend that has steadily continued since fall 2007. IU East’s fall headcount of 4,716 represented a 3.1 percent increase with students taking 42,410 credit hours, a 0.8 percent increase compared to fall 2014.
In the spring, IU East continued to see a record in enrollment. For the first time, the headcount enrollment exceeded 4,000 during a spring semester. There were 4,016 students enrolled for the spring, representing a 4.1 percent over the previous spring semester. Credit hours also reached a record level at 36,668, up 2.5 percent. A large portion of the enrollment growth was attributed to online enrollment, with almost 50 percent of all credit hours coming from online courses. In spring 2015, 65 percent of all IU East students took at least one online course, and 41 percent took all their courses online.
On the heels of continuous enrollment growth, IU East has also experienced a record in the number of degrees conferred for graduating students. The Class of 2015 had 715 bachelor’s degrees and 34 master’s degrees conferred, the most awarded in IU East’s history. In May, graduates joined over 8,000 IU East alumni.
One of the most notable graduates this year was Venus Williams. Williams received her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from IU East in August. She completed her last online courses at IU East this summer and was able to make her first visit to campus as she traveled to the Western & Southern Open at the Lindner Family Tennis Center in Mason, Ohio.
Williams was the first to graduate under an agreement between IU East and the Women’s Tennis Benefits Association (WTBA), a collaboration that started five years ago with the WTA and IU East. Currently, more than a dozen of the WTA’s players are enrolled in IU East online degree completion programs. Additionally,
IU East signed a similar agreement with the ATP in June 2015. The ATP is the governing body of the men’s professional tennis circuits. Both agreements provide the opportunity for players to professionally train and play tennis while completing their bachelor’s degree online. During her visit to IU East, Williams toured the campus, spoke with students about courses, and met members of the faculty, staff and community.
IU East celebrated the start of construction on the Student Events and Activities Center in June 2015. The center is IU East’s fifth to be built on campus. The last addition to campus, Springwood Hall, was constructed in 1991. The center will promote student success through a comprehensive offering of programming in health and wellness, physical education, athletics, student activities and special events.
Another addition to the campus is IU East’s first Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit. The juried exhibit features the work of six artists from across the United States. IU East has nine sculpture pads that were added to outside areas during the campus construction and renovation of the quad, completed in August 2014. The renovation of the quad was designed to provide a more amiable space for campus gatherings and events. These improvements included additional landscaping with a rain garden, pergola, seating, new perimeter trees and replacement of some of the inner sidewalks. Each piece of the exhibit is on loan and will be on campus for two years.
IU East is a campus supportive of the arts. This fall, IU East renamed The Gallery to the Tom Thomas Gallery. Thomas (1945-2009) was an associate professor of fine arts at IU East for over 30 years, he was the founder of the Whitewater Valley Art Competition (WVAC), and he was an artist. He had an immense impact on his students and the campus. In recognition of Thomas’ dedication to the arts and to teaching, the enclosed art gallery in Whitewater Hall was named for Thomas in October during the 37th annual WVAC juror reception. Over the past year, several family members, friends and colleagues contributed to a campaign that would help preserve Thomas’ legacy on campus and further advance IU East’s fine arts program.
Remembering Legacy, Loyalty and Leadership
The past year brought a time of remembrance and reflection as the campus mourned the loss of a few of its most prominent leaders and supporters.
Tom Raper, a longtime friend and devoted supporter IU East, passed away in April, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. IU East named Tom Raper Hall in his honor, following a $2.17 million gift to the campus in 2009. Raper and his wife, Suzanne, supported the Tom Raper Scholarship to benefit hardworking, deserving students who are committed to building their success in east central Indiana. He had also been a member of IU East Board of Advisors since 1993.
Donald C. “Danny” Danielson passed away at his home in New Castle, Ind., in May. Throughout their lives, Danny and Patty Daniels, were actively involved in projects that supported the Henry County community and Indiana University. They were a driving force in the creation of IU East’s Danielson Center, establishing the Henry County Community Foundation, the Henry County YMCA and building the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame. This December, the Danielsons provided a $100,000 gift from their estate for the Danielson Center. The gift was presented by the Danielson’s daughter, Susie Danielson Anderson, on behalf of her sisters, Mary Johnson and Amy Thompson.
Also in December, IU East remembered former Chancellor Glenn Goerke, the campus’ second chancellor. Goerke accomplished many success while at IU East and was an active member in the community. He led the way for IU East to bring baccalaureate degrees to campus as well as plans for a second building, Hayes Hall. The Goerkes continued to support IU East through the Glenn and Joyce Goerke Scholarship, awarded to IU East students for demonstrated academic excellence.