Indiana University Kokomo

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KOKOMO, Ind. — Three volleyball players put aside their high school rivalry to join forces as Cougars on the Indiana University Kokomo volleyball team.

teammatesKaley Harness, Lindi Thomas, and Alexis Brickner.“It wasn’t as weird as I thought it would be, we clicked instantly,” said Lindi Thomas, a freshman outside hitter from Parker City, Indiana.

Earlier this year, the IU Kokomo volleyball team played their first match of the season – and the first time Thomas, Kaley Harness and Alexis Brickner worked together as teammates toward a common goal.

Winning together, however, has not always been the case.

Good friends Harness and Brickner attended Southwood High School and participated in the volleyball program. Thomas attended Wapahani High School, making the transition from oppositions to teammates a little getting use to.

The rivalry between the players stemmed from the two volleyball teams facing one another on an annual basis.

“It was always a rivalry because when we went to the tournament, semi-state, we always played each other,” Harness said, an outside hitter and defensive specialist.

“It was basically every year,” added Thomas.

Harness, a sophomore, was the first to commit to the team, followed by Thomas. Brickner, a freshman middle hitter, was the last of the three to join the Cougars.

“I knew where Kaley came from, and that the Southwood program was intense, so I knew that it must be a good program. If it is good enough for Kaley, then it must be good,” said Thomas.

“I didn’t decide until late, but Kaley was one of the main reasons I came here,” added Brickner.

The three former rivals not only bonded on the court, but also took their friendships a step further and became roommates, for which Harness takes the credit.

“I guess this is my doing, since I’m a sophomore and they’re freshmen,” Harness said. “We all decided to live together, so I think it was easier for Lindi to come here and not have to worry about that.”

The chemistry between the girls can be seen on the court with the team currently on a nine-game win streak, and having a record of 16-7 this season. It can be seen off the court whenever they are together.

With busy class schedules, frequent practices, and a hectic volleyball schedule, that includes travel to other states, as far away as Pennsylvania. The roommates don’t have a lot of free time, but when they do, they normally spend it at home.

“We like to cook and watch movies,’’ said Thomas.

“And eat!” Harness added.

Another thing they enjoy in their free time is watching T.V. shows; they list their current favorite as, The Vampire Diaries.

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.

Story written by student writer Calani Hitchell. Calani is an intern in the Office of Media & Marketing.

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KOKOMO, Ind. — Indiana University Kokomo students will be on fall break Monday, October 20, and Tuesday, October 21.

First Day 2014Students in the QuadThere will be no classes either of those days, but all campus offices and the Library will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The bookstore will be open regular hours, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., both days.

The Cole Fitness Center will be open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, October 18, noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, October 19, and 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday, October 20, and Tuesday, October 21.

The Cougar Country Café will be open with grab and go items from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday and Tuesday. The grill will be closed.

Classes resume at 8 a.m. Wednesday, October 22. The fitness center will open at 6 a.m., and the café will open at 7 a.m. 

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.

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KOKOMO, Ind. — Three Indiana University regional campuses are partnering to give a boost to Ivy Tech students as they transfer to complete four-year degrees, by providing academic support and financial incentives.

Chancellor Installation 2014Chancellor Susan Sciame-GieseckeIU Kokomo, together with IU South Bend and IU Northwest, share a three-year, $450,000 grant from the Kresge Foundation in an effort to increase the number of college graduates in Indiana.

“Our goal is to help more Ivy Tech students complete their two-year degree, and then attend IU Kokomo and complete a four-year degree,” said Chancellor Susan Sciame-Giesecke. “This grant will allow us to provide a transfer advisor, who can give personal support to all interested students. Working together with Ivy Tech faculty and staff, I know we can help more students in our region complete a college degree. I appreciate the support of the Kresge Foundation to achieve more pathways to a college degree.”

The grant will fund a degree pathway program to help Ivy Tech students transfer to one of the IU campuses and get the support they need to graduate with a bachelor’s degree. The goal of the program is to increase the number of college graduates in Indiana by investing in associate and bachelor’s degree completion at the regional level. It requires participating students to attend college full-time, maintain good academic standing, meet regularly with college and university advisors, and finish both the associate and bachelor’s degrees in no more than nine semesters.

The program provides students with academic support and financial incentives, including guaranteed admission; university advising and mentoring while attending Ivy Tech; scholarships that offset tuition increases; and advice to help students minimize college debt. In addition, Pell-eligible students who meet a minimum GPA requirement can apply for scholarships at these IU regional campuses to ensure that the combination of federal, state, and campus support will cover tuition, fees, books, lab, and other direct educational costs. Taken together, the program provides Ivy Tech students with an excellent, affordable, seamless pathway from an associate degree to an IU bachelor’s degree.

 

The grant will provide start-up funding for three full-time IU transfer specialists who will work on-site at Ivy Tech campuses, and also fund start-up of summer bridge programs piloted by the IU campuses. This IU initiative is modeled on a successful program at Governors State University (GSU).

The three IU regional campuses and Ivy Tech have already met to discuss naming the program, recruiting students, and collaborating on improving degree completion and reducing student debt.

The program aligns with two of the Kresge Foundations education program strategies: creating pathways to and through college, and building the capacity of institutions focused on low-income and underrepresented students.

The Kresge Foundation is a $3 billion private, national foundation that works to expand opportunities in America's cities through grant-making and investing in arts and culture, education, work in the environment, health, human services and community development efforts in Detroit. Fostering greater access to and success in postsecondary education for low-income, minority and first-generation college students is the focus of Kresge's education grant making.  In 2013, the Board of Trustees awarded nearly $20 million in grants to support higher education in the United States and South Africa, with half benefiting U.S. community colleges.  For more information, visit kresge.org or follow @kresgedu.

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.

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KOKOMO, Ind. — Bullying is not just a middle school problem.

ANTANTIt happens everywhere, even on college campuses — but Indiana University Kokomo’s Student Union Board (SUB) works to prevent it and heal its affects, with Anti-Bullying week.

“Our goal is to engage students in a conversation, and to ask them to join us to create a healthy, safe and welcoming campus for everyone,” said Sofia Stout, communications director for the student organization.

Maria Ahmad, coordinator of student life and campus diversity, said they are encouraging all student organizations to sign up during Anti-Bullying week for Step Up! Training, which teaches how to intervene as bystanders if they see something happening.

“We’re asking everyone to be aware of what is happening around you, and if you see bullying, say something,” she said. “Bullying affects everyone, it’s not just a middle school issue. It has become part of our culture, but we can change that.”

Anti-Bullying week kicks off at noon Monday, October 13, with a presentation by comedian ANT, “Bullied, Bashed, but not Broken.” ANT, who has been seen on the Tonight Show and Last Comic Standing, will tell his story about being bullied for being gay and the son of immigrant parents, the peer pressure that led him to drugs and alcohol, and his recovery and success. The performance is in the Kelley Student Center, Room 130.

“He’s funny, but he has a serious message,” Stout said. “We hope students will attend, listen, and take it to heart.”

Wednesday, SUB will show TED Talk videos about bullying in the Kelley Student Center Commons, during lunch hour. Maria Ahmad, coordinator of student life and campus diversity, said the eight to 10 minute videos, featuring experts in a variety of subjects, are meant to inspire people to think and take action on the topic.

Students also may write on butcher paper on the walls, either to give messages of hope to people being bullied, or to apologize to someone he or she bullied in the past.

“Peer pressure still exists in college,” Stout said. “As our school grows, stuff like that will unfortunately happen. We want to come together as a community of care to provide education and healing.”

Activities are part of National Bullying Prevention Month.

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.