First WeatherSTEM unit in Indiana installed at UIndy

When it comes to weather, the forecast in Indianapolis can be pretty unpredictable from one day to the next. A new weather station installed at the University of Indianapolis this week will help meteorologists and the community try to make more sense of incoming weather data. weatherstem_2

A solar-powered WeatherSTEM unit providing up-to-the-minute weather data on temperature, wind speed, humidity, rainfall, barometric pressure and many other statistics was installed atop the roof of the Schwitzer Student Center in mid-July. The system also has a sensor in the ground to report soil moisture and ground temperature.

The data from the unit is available now on an interactive website, an app, Facebook and Twitter – allowing the UIndy community and general public to monitor the weather near campus and receive alert notifications. The information is available 24 hours a day and will be used by different groups across campus for safety and research purposes.

The WeatherSTEM station is the result of UIndy faculty and student collaborations to bring new technology to monitor and research weather patterns and atmospheric conditions. Recent Earth-Space Science grad Carly Nicholson ’17 began discussing the idea of a weather station with associate professor Tim Duman nearly three years ago.

As a student, Nicholson branded her campus weather updates with the phrase “Stay Weather Safe.” But it was more than just a tagline. She said, “it’s a lifelong devotion to environmental awareness.”

This spring, she authored a grant to help find financial support for a WeatherSTEM unit. It didn’t take long for UIndy alumnus Bob Green ’70 to take action.

From left: Carly Nicholson '17, Dr. Tim Duman and Luke Hunnewell of WeatherSTEM.

From left: Carly Nicholson ’17, Dr. Tim Duman and Luke Hunnewell of WeatherSTEM.

“UIndy is now a hub of meteorological data. The campus and surrounding community have the opportunity to become more intimate with the weather they experience day to day with use of the WeatherSTEM website, app and social media,” says Nicholson who is currently pursuing her master’s in public affairs and environmental science at IU Bloomington.

Green’s gift to support the WeatherSTEM station is in honor and memory of Dr. William Gommel, a professor of Mathematics & Earth-Space Science at the University from 1965 to 1992.

“I have a hunch that Professor Gommel would be pleased to know that one of his favorite topics – meteorology – has an ongoing presence on the UIndy campus in the form of a live weather data system,” said UIndy alumnus Bob Green ’70.

Members of the community are invited to attend a special dedication ceremony of the WeatherSTEM weather station during Homecoming Weekend on Friday, September 29. Register now.

UIndy sends largest faculty delegation to service learning symposium

Transforming communities through service learning was the focus of this year’s 7th International Symposium on Service Learning, held at the National University of Ireland in Galway. The University of Indianapolis co-hosted the event with NUI Galway and Stellenbosch University (South Africa). screen-shot-2017-07-11-at-1-00-36-pm

UIndy had the largest faculty delegation attending the symposium, and several faculty members presented research on the impact of service learning and community engagement. Marianna Foulkrod, director of Service Learning & Community Engagement, served as co-chair.
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Renovations underway on Good Hall main entrance

The oldest and most iconic building on the University of Indianapolis campus is getting a facelift. 

The front entrance to Good Hall, which has been cordoned off for the past term, is undergoing a restoration process that began in June and will continue through 2018. Renovation plans include refurbishing the building’s two-story portico and six columns at the main entrance. The campus landmark will also receive structural renovations to transform Good Hall into a learning environment that is more aligned with the needs of today’s students.

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UIndy hosts Nitro Circus Live on July 28 at Key Stadium

Nitro Circus Live brings breath-taking stunts and choreographed action to the University of Indianapolis on Friday, July 28. Hot from the 2017 Nitro World Games in Salt Lake City in June, athletes will perform tricks in freestyle motocross, BMX and skate, plus all manner of crazy contraptions off the one-of-a-kind 40-foot Nitro Gigant-A-Ramp.

The two-and-a-half-hour sports-performance show offers a fun family night, with a blend of daredevil action and athletic camaraderie. Nitro Circus will bring in additional seating, staging and ramps to transform Key Stadium for one night only.

Rachelle Merkel-Diaz, director of summer programs at the University, said Nitro Circus is just the beginning as UIndy expands event offerings that appeal to the broader community. Events like Nitro Circus tie in with the University’s strategy to make the Indianapolis south side a destination point that enriches local neighborhoods, with UIndy as an important anchor.

“We’re excited to host Nitro Circus at the University of Indianapolis for the first time. This is a fun, unique event for the whole family, and everyone is invited to come and check it out,” she said.

Merkel-Diaz said residents can expect to see more events happening as the UIndy footprint grows and enhances community partnerships.

Jeremy Rawle, Gregg Godfrey and action sports superstar Travis Pastrana launched the Nitro Circus concept from their garage in Utah in 2003. Since then it’s grown into a worldwide phenomenon, with a series on MTV that aired in more than 60 countries. The show has toured five continents, with sold-out shows in Australia, New Zealand, China, the United States, Canada, South Africa, and all across Europe.

Bob Brubeck, assistant athletic director for facilities & operations, was instrumental in bringing Nitro Circus to the UIndy campus. He became familiar with Nitro Circus through the television program on MTV.

“I thought it would be cool to do it here,” Brubeck said. When Nitro Circus organizers got in touch with him seeking a venue in Indianapolis, he seized the opportunity.

The event could attract as many as 10,000 spectators to campus, making Nitro Circus an ideal way to showcase UIndy’s amenities.

“Many people from the area will be able to see the University and what we have to offer,” Brubeck said.

Fast facts:

When: 7:00 p.m., July 28, 2017
Where: Key Stadium, University of Indianapolis
Cost: From $19 for standing general admission to $124 for a family pack (two adults, two children)

Buy tickets here. Use promo code “HOUNDS” to get 20 percent off.

Power tools and professional development: TeenWorks at UIndy

A group of teenagers dressed in blue T-shirts were gathered around workbenches in front of the University’s Physical Plant on a recent warm summer’s day, learning the finer points of wood-cutting with power tools.

The summer program last six weeks, with professional development support provided year-round.

The summer program last six weeks, with professional development support provided year-round.

But these aren’t your average teens working a summer job. Hailing from high schools throughout the Indianapolis metro area, the students are participating in TeenWorks, a summer employment and college readiness program that provides opportunities for hundreds of teenagers. Indiana philanthropist Gene B. Glick started the initiative in 1981 with the goal of providing teens with a summer job to teach them the principles of self-discipline, a hard day’s work and giving back to the community.

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CELL announces EWIN Partnership Planning Grant recipients

The Education Workforce Innovation Network (EWIN) and the Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning (CELL) at the University of Indianapolis announced the second round of Education-Workforce Partnership Planning Grants.

The grants will fund the work of six groups across the state. Grants total $75,000 and range from $7,500 to $15,000 for proposals from regional partnerships that consist of K-12 school/districts, adult education, postsecondary institutions, high-demand sector industry and other community agencies or organizations. Four proposals address manufacturing, one focuses on health sciences and another centers on information technology.

EWIN, under the Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning (CELL) at the University of Indianapolis, provides the grants as well as technical assistance to awardees. Funding will support research into promising models of education-workforce alignment and design of implementation plans. These plans can include robust Early College (EC) career and technical education centers, Pathways in Technology Early College High Schools (P-TECH), academy models or more organically developed customized approaches.

Last year’s grantees went through a six-month planning stage, with EWIN’s technical assistance, and are currently in the midst of implementing their models. At the end of the planning period, in December 2016, Jody French, principal of Perry Central High School, stated, “The skills mapping we did with our manufacturers in the room was amazing. Seeing the energy and enthusiasm among our companies has taken us to the next level.”

This year’s grantees have the benefit of learning from the first round, and are equally enthused. Upon hearing the announcement that a Central Indiana grant would be funded, EmployIndy President and CEO Angela Carr Klitzsch said, “Thanks for your confidence in EmployIndy and IPS! We look forward to utilizing this planning grant to ensure young people in our city have an opportunity to access curricula that aligns with employer demand and career pathways.”

The list of recipients follows including main partners and short descriptions of proposals:

  • Plymouth Community School Corporation with the Marshall County Economic Development Corporation –Manufacturing, Precision Machining

– Will explore innovative business/education engagement practices and create career pathways in precision machining to better meet regional employment needs.

  • MSD of Decatur Township in Indianapolis with Nextech – Computer Science

– Will explore a number of existing programs and structures to support the district as it incorporates computer science instruction through its partnerships with Area 31 Career and Technical Consortium, Nextech, Apple, Bluelock, Bitwise and School of Business at the University of Indianapolis.

  • Lafayette School Corporation with Greater Lafayette Commerce – Advanced Manufacturing

– Will explore innovative models of education/workforce alignment in advanced manufacturing through partnerships with a variety of businesses, higher ed, local economic development agencies and the Wildcat Creek Career Cooperative that serves eight school districts in three counties.

  • Southeastern School Corporation in Walton, IN –Manufacturing

– Will collaborate with key stakeholders to design a continuous pathway to employment and/or postsecondary where students learn basic and advanced manufacturing skills, earn certifications and complete college credits through Ivy Tech, Vincennes and Purdue University.

  • EmployIndy with Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) – Health Sciences

– Will create a Health Sciences Career Academy within Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet High School and Longfellow STEM and Medical Magnet Middle School through collaboration with EmployIndy, IPS, Ivy Tech Community College, the University of Indianapolis, American Senior Living, United Home Healthcare and Trilogy Health Services. The work intends to ensure that IPS students are prepared to enroll in college or career training, enlist in the military or be employed at a living wage.

  • The City of Bedford and Radius Indiana – Manufacturing

– Will continue to explore and follow an evolving strategic pathways plan customized for its community to provide a more skilled workforce to local employers and better prepare students for the new world of postsecondary as well as successful careers in high demand/high wage jobs.

In the first round of Education-Workforce Partnership Planning Grants, lead organizations for funded proposals were Horizon Education Alliance in Elkhart, Jay School Corporation, Lebanon Community School Corporation, Perry Central Community Schools and Ripley County Community Foundation. EWIN has begun to showcase the resulting implementation plans for these partnerships. To learn about these communities’ initiatives, click here.

Funding for Planning Grants was provided by Lilly Endowment Inc.

The Center of Excellence in Leadership of Learning at the University of Indianapolis provides leadership that is both cutting-edge and action-oriented. Created in 2001, CELL unites districts, schools, communities, universities and businesses to build a sense of urgency and form innovative collaborations for statewide educational and economic improvement.

EWIN, a CELL initiative, strategically supports regions across Indiana in reaching the goal of 60 percent postsecondary attainment. Through the development of education, community, and business partnerships, collaboratively designed career pathways connect local systems. Pathways make students college and career ready, design curricular programs grounded in the real world, engage businesses in K-16 learning experiences and provide the local workforce with highly skilled employees.

For more information, contact Marianna Richards at 317-791-5993 or richardsm@uindy.edu

 

​School of Education programs request third party comments for CAEP review

The UIndy School of Education is hosting an accreditation visit by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) on November 5-7, 2017.

Interested parties are invited to submit third-party comments to the visiting team. Please note that comments must address substantive matters related to the quality of professional education programs offered, and should specify the party’s relationship to the EPP – Education Program Provider (i.e., graduate, present or former faculty member, employer of graduates). No anonymous testimony will be considered.

We invite you to submit written testimony by October 15, 2017:
Site Visitors
CAEP
1140 19th Street NW, Suite 400
Washington, DC 20036
Or by e-mail to: callforcomments@caepnet.org

Summer activities double on campus as UIndy expands outreach

The University of Indianapolis is buzzing with activity as summer camps, classes and conferences are in full swing this June. It’s part of the University’s broader goal to engage with the local community year-round by offering valuable campus resources for families, businesses and professional organizations.

Campers in the Radical Robotics Summer Camp made aerodynamic airplanes and rockets and heard from UIndy Director of Engineering Programs Jose Sanchez . The camp was offered in conjunction with the robotics team at Center Grove High School. (Photo: D. Todd Moore)

(Photo: D. Todd Moore)

Between June and August, the University will host dozens of events on campus. Conferences include Teach for America’s annual academy, Indiana Choral Directors Association Summer Conference, 4-H Leadership, National Association of Black Accountants Accounting Career Awareness Program (NABA ACAP), Melody Makers of Indiana and Nitro Circus. Summer camps focus on a variety of sports, including football, swimming, basketball and volleyball and subjects like math, writing workshops, robotics, art and multimedia game development. UIndy summer camps offer opportunities for second graders to grandparents.
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Lilly program opens eyes of nursing students to the pharma industry

From the first time she explored the vast grounds of the global pharmaceutical company, University of Indianapolis nursing student Danielle Sparling realized her career path is much wider than she originally envisioned.

She enrolled at UIndy with solid plans of earning her degree and going on to become a family nurse practitioner. That may still be the case, but today she understands it’s not her only option thanks to an intense learning experience piloted this summer at Eli Lilly and Company (Lilly). Nurses at Lilly play important roles as researchers, regulatory scientists, case managers, global health consultants and more—all critical to becoming one of the largest pharmaceutical corporations in the world.

“From day one, I gained insight into how many avenues there are within the field of nursing. This was exciting, because I was able to learn about these non-traditional roles,” said Sparling, a sophomore.lillycropped

Sparling was one of four nursing students to participate in the pilot program this summer along with Serena Cornelius, Paige Hendershot and Samantha Hunter (all juniors). The Lilly/University of Indianapolis Nurse Education Program rotates the students through various aspects of Lilly’s operations—from drug discovery and development to bioethics and patient safety. The program is designed to educate students about the drug development process, the role of nurses in the industry and professional competencies for success in a healthcare business environment.

The students participated for four weeks in a structured mentorship involving real-world projects, industry-led professional development workshops and opportunities to network with Lilly nurses, experts and leaders. By exposing undergraduate students to the drug-development process, nursing students gained valuable knowledge of how patient-centered treatment options are developed and assessed.

“Nurses today have to be competent decisions makers,” said Jennifer Workman, co-leader of the Lilly program. “They need to have high-learning agility, be able to multi-task and communicate clearly and accurately information about treatment options.”

“Our students understand this was a very unique opportunity to learn about an industry they know very little about in these early stages of their education,” said Denise Ferrell, an assistant professor and program director in the School of Nursing. “This makes the nursing program at UIndy a more holistic experience by bridging the gap between nursing in an academic setting and what is available in our community.”

“Nurses are playing expanded roles as the health care system evolves to meet new needs. Nurses not only have enhanced responsibility and accountability in traditional settings, such as hospitals and clinics, but increasingly have roles that enable them to move across a variety of health care settings,” said Norma Hall, dean of the School of Nursing.

The education program also helps Lilly to educate future health care professionals about how pharmaceuticals are manufactured, tested and regulated, Workman said.

“The students have a unique vantage point and opportunity to work alongside some of the most talented health care professionals in the industry and understand their important roles in our organization,” Workman said. The students also reviewed the drug-approval process, investigated regulations, conducted literature reviews, assessed environmental trends and marketing strategies, researched treatment plans and created patient education materials.

The School of Nursing at UIndy is one of the leading pipelines for nurses across Indiana. The program is ranked among the top nursing programs in the Midwest by U.S. News and World Report. The program prides itself on by meeting the rising need for nurses as the health care industry grows, regionally and nationally. By a global company like Lilly opening its doors and sharing its expertise, the School of Nursing can provide unique professional competencies and specialized knowledge to its students, Ferrell said.

“I have gained an appreciation for the drug development process and have found the nurses at Lilly all bring something special to the table because they actually know how a decision will affect the patient because of the connection they have,” Hunter said.

Hendershot added: “I never knew there were so many opportunities for nurses in the pharma industry. One of my biggest takeaways was how important pharma is to health care. Without it, new advancements in treatments would be rarely considered.”

“As a nurse in the future, I will be able to fall back on this key point and strive to be the best advocate possible for my patient,” Cornelius said.

For Sparling, Lilly reinforced her love for the profession and excitement about the next opportunity. On her last day in the Lilly internship, she learned she officially had been accepted in the UIndy nursing program.

“One of the Lilly doctors told us, ‘You’re best at what you love, and if you do just that, success will follow.’ I’ve never been happier for my chosen career path and can’t wait to see what the future holds,” Sparling said.

 

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