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Fall sports lead conference; men’s BB rolls on

UPDATE: Hoops Hounds destroy Daemen, now 9-0

UIndy logo (with dog)-201&blk

With the fall sports season behind us, UIndy tops the Great Lakes Valley Conference All-Sport Trophy standings, putting the Greyhounds in place to claim their fourth consecutive trophy and eighth overall.

The All-Sports Trophy is based on all-around performance in the conference’s 20 sponsored sports. The Hounds were boosted by the men’s soccer team, with its conference championship run, and the volleyball team, with its 15-3 conference record. Read more at the Athletics site.

In other sports news, the men’s basketball team continued its undefeated season Tuesday with a 78-73 road win over eight-ranked Barry University in Florida. The Hounds had just risen to No. 9 in this week’s NABC/Division II Top 25 Poll. Now 8-0, tonight they face Daemen College of New York. Learn more about the team here.

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Development office has new executive director

The University of Indianapolis has tapped an experienced fundraising professional to play a key role in its University Advancement division.



Stephanie Hays-Mussoni is UIndy’s new executive director of development, overseeing functions including major gifts, planned giving, advancement services, prospect research and corporate and foundation relations. She reports to Vice President for Advancement Christopher Molloy.

“Stephanie brings a wealth of experience in higher education and not-for-profit fundraising and leadership to the university,” Molloy said. “Following a national search, she was the search committee’s unanimous choice for this important position.”

Hays-Mussoni has worked since 2012 as director of gift development at Indiana University East in Richmond, where she had responsibilities in advancement, marketing and community and alumni relations. She previously served as executive director of the Cope Environmental Center in Centerville.

A Certified Fund Raising Executive, Hays-Mussoni holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Ball State University and is pursuing a doctorate in higher education and organizational change at Benedictine University.

On the personal side, she enjoys traveling, camping and hiking. She and her husband, Jeremy, have two daughters: Bella, 5, and Ava, 8. They are relocating to Indianapolis from the Richmond area.

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NOLA trip reflects new service initiative



UIndy senior Ashley Stanford is starting her Winter Break with a trip south – to rehab flood-damaged, abandoned houses.

Stanford and fellow senior Evan Wadsworth are the student site leaders for a weeklong service project in New Orleans. With eight other students and a staff adviser, they will leave in a van at 5:30 a.m. Sunday to volunteer with Project Homecoming, a nonprofit organization that revitalizes neighborhoods still struggling to recover from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

“I think this project is important because of the formation that it brings, not only to the homes we will work on, but the students as well,” says Stanford, a  Psychology major from Crown Point, Ind. “Service trips can change people in that way.”

Service-oriented travel is not uncommon at UIndy, where trips typically are organized by chaplains, or by professors in specific disciplines. This one, however, emerges from a new effort to offer “alternative breaks” in a comprehensive, consistent way that puts students at the forefront of planning and execution.



The UIndy Serves initiative is spearheaded by two relatively new staffers: Troy Heffron, residence director for East Hall, and Dylan Neel, residence director for Central Hall. For this first year, they set a goal of arranging one trip over Winter Break (New Orleans) and three more over Spring Break (destinations TBA).

The idea grew out of a service trip last spring that Heffron helped to organize and lead, taking 10 students – Stanford among them – to work with an affordable-housing organization in St. Augustine, Fla. He was impressed by the impact the trip had on the students, who came away eager to do more.

“A lot of them wanted to be involved and grow in their capacity,” said Heffron, who will serve as the staff adviser on this trip.



“Hearing how well it went and how it impacted that group of students, I just wanted to jump on board,” Neel said. “This gives students another opportunity to be leaders.”

UIndy Serves is built on national standards. Participants must apply in advance and pass a screening process. Each trip has one staff or faculty adviser and two student leaders who have undergone special training. The program draws from frameworks established by the Break Away alternative break organization, including “Eight Components of a Quality Alternative Break” and “The Active Citizen Continuum.”

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Coming soon to The Perk: Starbucks coffee

we-proudly-serve-starbucks-coffeeIt’s the news many caffeine-craving Greyhounds have been waiting for: In January, The Perk will begin serving Starbucks products.

UIndy Dining Services has joined the coffee behemoth’s “We Proudly Serve …” program, which will bring Starbucks equipment, coffees, Frappuccinos, Tazo Teas and flavor syrups to the coffee shop in Schwitzer Student Center, said Kory Vitangeli, Dean of Students and Vice President for Student and Campus Affairs.

The Perk will retain its friendly service and convenient location, as well as its current selection of pastries. And it will continue to accept cash, credit, meal plan swipes and Crimson Cash.

There is no truth to the rumor, however, that the mysterious Starbucks siren (pictured above) will become UIndy’s new athletic mascot.

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Alumna receives statewide teaching award



UIndy alumna Kara Heichelbech, a teacher at Clark-Pleasant Middle School in Greenwood, has been named this year’s Outstanding Middle Level Teacher by the Indiana Business Education Association. The statewide award was presented at the organization’s recent annual conference in Indianapolis.

A 2012 graduate, Heichelbach spent more than a decade in the corporate world before entering the Master of Arts in Teaching program in UIndy’s School of Education. The MAT program, designed for career-changers who already hold bachelor’s degrees in specific content areas, can prepare graduates for teaching careers in less than two calendar years.

Heichelbech has taught digital communications at CPMS for the past four years and serves as Related Arts department chair and yearbook advisor. She also leads the school’s Warrior Strong team in the Relay for Life cancer awareness event, raising $4,500 to date.

She is not UIndy’s first MAT grad to win an IBEA service award, however. Other recent recipients have included Becky Sondgeroth, who was the Outstanding Secondary Level Teacher for 2012; Todd Kunz, who earned the Emerging Professional Award for 2010; and Anna Stumpf, Emerging Professional for 2007.

More information on the MAT program is here.


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At UIndy, Finals Week comes with perks

Leave it to UIndy to make Finals Week fun.

Winter Break begins next week for students, but first they must survive this week’s gauntlet of semester-ending exams and project deadlines.

Never fear, however. Tonight brings the cherished Greyhound tradition of  Midnight Breakfast, with faculty, staff and even top administrators volunteering in the Schwitzer Student Center dining room to serve hearty meals to bleary-eyed scholars starting at 11:59 p.m. The meal follows a full evening of Campus Program Board-sponsored activities in the Schwitzer atrium that include:

  • The Residence Hall Association Prize Giveaway, 8-11:30 p.m., with raffle prizes including a North Face jacket, a Nutribullet, a Fitbit, a Samsung Galaxy Tablet 4 and Perfect North Slopes ski passes. Proceeds support the nonprofit Exodus Refugee organization.
  • Novelty Photo Wreathes, 7:30-11:30 p.m.
  • Singer Matt Beilis, 8-9 p.m.
  • Karaoke, 9-11 p.m.
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Lugar shares perspective with students, press

2014 Lugar SymposiumSen. Richard Lugar presents UIndy’s $1,000 Lugar Student Leadership Award, as well as a copy of his own book, to Lawrence North High School senior Edric Zeng during Saturday’s 38th annual Lugar Symposium for Tomorrow’s Leaders.

The Indianapolis Star
Fox59 (audio)

What was on longtime Senator Richard Lugar’s mind when he spoke to 450 Hoosier high school students, as well as several journalists, Saturday at UIndy?

Let’s see: nuclear weapons, Ebola, Iraq, Syria, Ukraine, NATO, terrorism, oil production, climate change, the European recession and America’s “pivot to Asia,” among other topics.

The setting was the 38th annual Lugar Symposium for Tomorrow’s Leaders, presented by UIndy’s Lugar Academy for about 450 select high school juniors representing more than 70 Indiana counties. Lugar apologized in advance for the “heavy” content, but his goal, as always, was to inform bright young people about the issues facing the world and encourage them to take an active role.

“You are the most important people I will have the opportunity to talk to” this year, he told the crowd in Ransburg Auditorium. “You have so much ahead of you that is possible.”

Read more »

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Friday showcase features UIndy student writers

Folks enjoying the city’s First Friday gallery tour tomorrow should spend some time at the UIndy-affiliated Wheeler Arts Community in Fountain Square, where the Department of English will host another of its periodic “Electrostatic Showcase” literary events.

Highlights will include readings by creative writing students from 6 to 8 p.m. and the launch of the latest edition of Etchings, UIndy’s student-run literary magazine, from 8 to 9 p.m.

From 9 to 10 p.m., three professional writers will read their work, courtesy of UIndy and Vouched Books. Chicago-based James Tadd Adcox has a new novel, Does Not Love, which is set in an alternative Indianapolis. Adam Fleming Petty’s work has appeared in the Millions, the Los Angeles Review of Books, the Christian Courier and Cultural Society. Sarah Suksiri’s work has appeared in Sonora Review, The Mackinac, Necessary Fiction and elsewhere.

Read more »

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Lugar to discuss conflict in world, Washington

Lugar Symposium 2013 - web

Richard Lugar speaks at the 2013 Lugar Symposium for Tomorrow’s Leaders.

Statewide symposium will bring 450 select high school juniors to campus

In what he has often described as his most important annual public speech, former U.S. Sen. Richard Lugar is expected to discuss the threat posed by ISIS and the need for post-election bipartisanship during a public address Saturday at the University of Indianapolis.

The occasion is the 38th annual Lugar Symposium for Tomorrow’s Leaders, which will bring 450 select Indiana high school juniors and 150 accompanying adults to the UIndy campus for a morning program featuring Lugar’s keynote speech, a chance to meet and take photos with the Nobel Prize nominee, and an afternoon of expert-led small group discussions on national and global issues.

New this year will be a reunion and lunch for alumni and current students in UIndy’s History, Political Science and International Relations programs.

Read more »

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In the news: Archeology & Forensics Team

Dr. Krista Latham and the student team from UIndy’s Archeology & Forensics Laboratory are subjects of the cover story in the latest NUVO Newsweekly.

nuvo coverIn an extensive piece headlined “Immigration: A journey of death,” NUVO News Editor Amber Stearns (a UIndy alum) wrote about the team’s humanitarian work over the past two years: Two trips to southern Texas to exhume remains, and further work in the campus lab, in hopes of identifying undocumented migrants who died after crossing the border, typically of thirst or exposure.

“Not only do people deserve dignity in death, but someone out there is missing them,” Latham says in the interview. The story also features fellow anthropologist Wendy Vogt of IUPUI, a colleague who has traced the difficult path of refugees from Central America to the United States.

This week’s NUVO is available at locations throughout the city, and the story can be read online here.

In related news, The Weather Channel and Telemundo recently collaborated on a one-hour investigative report, “The Real Death Valley,” which mentions the Texas project and includes comments from Dr. Latham. The program can be seen here, and the UIndy material appears around the 21:00 mark.

The UIndy team’s blog documenting this summer’s work is still viewable at

The UIndy Archeology & Forensics Team at work in Texas, June 2014 (UIndy/Guy Housewright photo)

The UIndy forensics team in Texas, June 2014 — photo by Guy Housewright

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