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‘Intellectual Life’ discussions begin this week

Int Life pageThe UIndy community is taking a broad and deep look inside itself this year with a series of events and activities examining the university’s culture and intellectual environment.

This week brings the first of three structured Intellectual Life Dialogues scheduled this semester, as well as the first wave of many smaller, less formal events for faculty, students, administrators and staff.

The work over the next three months will explore the current state and envision the future of intellectual life on campus in light of the internal and external expectations facing UIndy and higher education in general. The results will be summarized at a sharing event in May and on the project’s MyUIndy site, which also provides background information, a schedule of events and resource materials to inform the process. Later this year, Executive Vice President and Provost Deborah Balogh will convene an Intellectual Life Council to consolidate the findings, offer recommendations for action and work with campus leadership to execute the vision.

The overall campaign is designed to maximize involvement from all corners of the UIndy community, said Dr. Michael Cartwright, Special Assistant to the President for University Mission, who is co-leading the effort with Balogh.

“We want this to be a multilayered process in which individuals can take the initiative to launch conversations on the issues that interest them,” Cartwright said.

The first of the brown-bag lunchtime Intellectual Life Dialogues, under the theme “Student Perspectives,” is scheduled 11:45 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. Thursday in UIndy Hall A. It will feature four student and alumni panelists – Rachael Junard ’16, Dylan Neel ’16, Robert Carrasco ’09, ’14, and Sneha Rajendrakumar Raut ’16 – moderated by Mark Weigand, Executive Vice President for Campus Affairs and Enrollment Services, with a response from Neil Perdue, Associate Professor and Assistant Dean of Academic Programs for the School of Psychological Sciences.

Attendees are asked to register at this link. The dialogues will continue March 24 with “Faculty Concerns and Aspirations” and April 21 with “University Leaders’ Concerns and Aspirations.”

Also taking place this week is a series of informal discussions organized by members of the Academic Affairs Leadership Team on the theme “What Does Our Mission Mean? A Discussion about the Claims Made in the UIndy Mission Statement.” They include a coffee talk at 3 p.m. Monday in Room 206 of the Health Pavilion, a brown-bag lunch session at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday in Esch Hall 212, another coffee talk at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday at The Perk in Schwitzer Student Center and a gathering at 3 p.m. Friday at the nearby El Azabache restaurant.

For more information, visit the Intellectual Life site on MyUIndy.