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On the Move News - April 2011

April 1, 2011


Things certainly haven’t slowed down much. We continue to grow and improve and get the word out that Indiana University Kokomo is relevant, is on the move, and is becoming the “cool” university where students can not only get an education, but can reap the benefits of being involved in many other extra -curricular activities.

Take a look at just some of the great things that have happened in the four short weeks since my last newsletter:

Gerry Stroman lauded for dedication to education

Gerry Stroman was named one of McDonald’s Black History Makers of Today. Stroman was selected for the honor, along with three other African-Americans who reside in Indiana. She is, however, the only educator recognized in the annual program that coincides with Black History Month.

Open House features grad, adult student programs

This two-day event was geared for adults who are considering starting college, returning to their studies, transferring to complete a bachelor’s degree or continuing to earn a master’s degree.

Faculty member named Nurse Educator of the Year

Indiana University Kokomo faculty member and alumna Debbie Bennett has been named “Nurse Educator of the Year” by the Indianapolis Star after being selected from more than 600 nominations for the annual Salute to Nurses award. She is now one of five finalists for the prestigious honor of “Nurse of the Year,” to be announced at a luncheon in Indianapolis in April.

Interim Director of Athletics

Jack Tharp has been appointed interim director of athletics to lead the new club sports program coming to campus this fall. The campus recently announced adding club sports to student activities this fall semester – offering competitive men’s basketball and women’s volleyball with an eye on joining the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) by fall 2012.

Campus Increases Courses Offered on Fridays

Students will have more flexibility in scheduling classes this fall as the campus moves to offer 10 percent of its courses on Fridays. The courses have been designed in such a way that a student can take a one-day a week course that only meets on Friday, or a couple of courses back-to-back that only meet on Friday.


The Messenger has hit the stands. View this first-class publication here.

Student Research Symposium

The two-day student research symposium featured students sharing research projects with the campus community The event was sponsored by the Honors Program and Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (M.A.L.S.).

Kristen Snoddy named first women's volleyball coach

Kristen Snoddy is the first women’s volleyball coach for the upcoming fall season, and tryouts are scheduled for mid-April. She is a senior lecturer in English and has a 30-year history of coaching volleyball, most recently for Northwestern High School.

New Professionals Conference

Students from campus and Ivy Tech learned about successful interviewing, the art of networking, and how to negotiate a salary. In addition, they enjoyed a four-course “how-to” etiquette dinner designed to teach the proper way to conduct business during a meal.

Compliance Training

This training is for supervisors and will cover FLSA, FMLA, and worker’s compensation. It will take place from 1:00-4:30 p.m. on April 8. Watch your e-mail for details.

Performance Management Training

All appointed staff and faculty holding an administrative position (Deans, Chairs, Associate Deans, etc.) are required to attend one of the following sessions: April 27, 28 or May 19, 20. Sessions will be held from 8:30-11:30 and 1:30-4:30 each day. Watch your e-mail for details.

Observatory Open House

Star gazers were able to get a closer look at planets orbiting Earth during the Observatory open house on March 13.

Art Gallery – Juried Exhibition

Judges selected 27 pieces to be shown out of the 70 received. The judges were Michael Applegate, Peru High School art department chairperson; Scott Grow, artist/curator; and Minda Douglas, assistant professor of fine arts at IU Kokomo. Overall, jurors wanted the exhibition to portray a wide variety of work, yet create a cohesive and aesthetically pleasing show.

Carver Center Event

This was a great event!  It provided an opportunity for members of the campus and the community to come together and work collectively to identify ways we can work together to continue to make progress on the campus’ three strategic initiatives.

Young Author’s Conference

Nearly 2,000 elementary students, parents, and grandparents were on campus for the annual Young Authors Conference on March 25. Two published authors of children’s books were present for book signing. The event – co-sponsored by the Kokomo Area Reading Council (KARC), IU Kokomo School of Education and Center for Early Childhood Education – provides local elementary students a forum in which to share books they have written, as well as meet authors of published children’s books.

Basketball Ribbon Cutting – Celebration at Center Court

The wait is over. Indiana University Kokomo’s outdoor basketball and volleyball courts are officially open. Nearly 300 students, faculty, staff, and members of the community joined in the celebration Tuesday afternoon alongside the courts to be a part of this historic moment on campus.

“Make Your Move” campus campaign kick off

Kresge Auditorium was filled with enthusiasm from faculty and staff as they learned about the 2011 “Make Your Move” campus campaign kick off on March 31. Everyone was entertained with a fabulous video from communications and marketing, walked the fitness trail on campus, and enjoyed some fellowship with colleagues over some healthy snacks. You can catch up on the campaign at www.iuk.edu/yourmove.


During the month of March, IU Kokomo made headlines several times, including:

WTHR TV in Indianapolis picked up our story about the Friday classes: WTHR: IU Kokomo to Increase Friday Classes, as well as IU Bloomington’s Home Pages IU Homepages: Indiana University Kokomo increases course offerings on Fridays.

During Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight’s State of the City address this week, he specifically mentions Chancellor Harris and the campus, and the importance of the community partnering with IU Kokomo.

He stated:

“Indiana University Kokomo has been a part of this community for decades, and I look forward to its continued growth. The campus has an aggressive and innovative Chancellor in Michael Harris. The Chancellor, who also serves on the Alliance Board, recently said that IU Kokomo has the opportunity to transform our entire region, by providing strong leadership and by meeting the educational needs of our workforce. He is right, and we must partner with him in these efforts.”

Here is a link to the full text of Mayor Goodnight’s speech:

Kokomo Perspective: Text and audio of Kokomo mayor Greg Goodnight's 2011 State of the City

In addition, during a recent manufacturing summit hosted by Congressman Joe Donnelly, Brian Harlow, vice president and head of power train operations with Chrysler Group, spoke specifically about training needs for engineers. Harlow added that they need more communication and critical thinking skills and is involving IU Kokomo in that training. – Again, another example of how IU Kokomo continues to work in an intentional and relevant manner to meet the needs of the region.

Also, articles in the Kokomo Tribune focus on the importance of higher education, and that factory jobs are not enough to sustain this region.

Kokomo Tribune: Education Expectations for Workers Continue to Rise

Kokomo Tribune: Getting the Message About Higher Education

In Closing

I am so proud of all of our accomplishments and I have deep appreciation for every one of you and all that you do. I look forward to keeping the momentum as we head toward commencement on May 10.

IU Kokomo is On the Move!


Michael Harris
Last updated: 08/12/2014