Indiana University Kokomo

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KOKOMO, Ind. — When Nida Zia enters medical school, she'll be more than prepared.

Nida ZiaNida ZiaZia, who earned her bachelor's and master's degrees from Indiana University Kokomo, has combined her academics and extensive volunteer service to help her gain experience working in the medical field.

She begins work next month as a scribe in Kokomo's St. Joseph Hospital Emergency Room. Zia learned about the opportunity from a nurse she met while volunteering there.

"This is a great experience for me to learn by watching and helping the doctors through patient treatment," she said. "I'm also learning technology skills I can use in medical school and in my career."

Sandra Herman, hospital marketing director, said Zia's degree gave her an advantage in the hiring process.

"Her wonderful education at IU Kokomo prepared her for this job," Herman said. "She understands medical terminology and patient assessment because of the excellent coursework there."

As a scribe, she will accompany emergency room doctors into the exam rooms, and enter the patients' medical history into their electronic medical records. She also will take notes during examinations, and update the doctors as test results come back, allows for a smoother treatment process for both patient and doctor.

Zia plans to learn as much as she can from her job, before enrolling in a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine program in 2014.

Zia's parents hoped for these kinds of opportunities for their four children when they left their native Pakistan when Nida was nine years old.

"My parents immigrated here to give us a better life, and these kinds of choices," she said. "Everyone knows this is the land of opportunity."

She has made the most of the chances offered to her in her new home, particularly in education. She earned a bachelor's degree in biology from IU Kokomo in 2011, and her Master of Arts in Liberal Studies (M.A.L.S.) degree in May.

She chose that program for its higher education teaching track, so she can teach at the college level after she completes her medical degree. Her original plan was to complete her biology degree in three years and then go straight to medical school, but an English class with Associate Professor Eva White led her down another path.

"Dr. White made such an impression on me, and made me want to explore outside my chosen science field," Zia said. "I thought this would be a different experience than being in a lab, and I wanted to try it.

White said the M.A.L.S. program would give Zia a unique perspective on medicine.

"Nida's intellectual curiosity, enthusiasm, and openness allow her to transcend the traditional divisions between the sciences and the humanities," she said. "She will be one of those rare physicians who will look at her patients holistically, and who will be open to use all sorts of therapies to heal them, thanks to her multidisciplinary background."

IU Kokomo has become a Zia family tradition. Her brother, Usman, and sister, Rabia, both graduated in 2010. Younger sister Maheen currently is a student in the informatics program.

While earning her degrees, Zia also volunteered in the community, not only at the hospital, but also at Kindred Transitional Care and Rehabilitation, and with the Coyote Kids summer running program. She also served on a humanitarian mission at a school in Colombia. Zia hopes to return there to work again in the future.

"I want to give back to the people there, through teaching or a medical mission," she said. "I grew up in an underserved country, so I know the difference I could make there."

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.

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KOKOMO, Ind. — Indiana University Kokomo students will benefit for many years to come from two generous donations from Solidarity Community Federal Credit Union.

Solidarity establishes scholarshipJeff McComas, President and CEO of Solidarity Community Federal Credit Union, and Susan Sciame-Giesecke, Interim Chancellor of Indiana University Kokomo, sign a scholarship agreement.The local credit union, a long-time campus supporter, gave $25,000 to the Milt and Jean Cole Family Fitness and Wellness Center, and also established a $3,000 scholarship, to be given to an incoming freshman each year.

Interim Chancellor Susan Sciame-Giesecke accepted both gifts from Jeff McComas, president and CEO of Solidarity Community Federal Credit Union, and Diana Tenbrook, vice president of marketing.

"I can't thank Jeff and Diana enough for their support of the IU Kokomo campus," she said. "They are both great champions of education and student success. Solidarity's support of the Cole Fitness Center provides a much needed workout facility on campus, and the scholarship will make an IU Kokomo education affordable for new students for years to come. We also appreciate their ongoing support for our athletic programs. They came on board and believed in us from the beginning. They are one reason we were able to build a quality athletic program so quickly."

Solidarity has partnered with the campus on a wide variety of projects, including providing internships for students for the last three years, and mentoring members of the Enactus student organization. The credit union also has sponsored practice gear and printed schedules for Cougar Athletics, and supported the New Professionals Conference, the Dress for Success event, recycling projects, Microsoft Word training sessions, Homecoming and the Homecoming carnival, and kids' nights at volleyball and basketball games. Solidarity also provided $500 Escape Debt scholarships with Enactus.

"When I look at the long list of their contributions, it's hard to find a suitable way to say thank you," stated Sciame-Giesecke.

McComas is pleased to support the campus mission.

"Our philosophy is to be a viable partner to our community in every aspect — fiscally, socially, and emotionally," he said. "We truly want to commend IU Kokomo for offering an outstanding curriculum of degree programs. We look forward to a long and fulfilling partnership for many years to come."

The wellness and fitness center, scheduled to open in late summer, will be a 20,000 square-foot facility. Amenities include a jogging and walking track, cardio and strength training area, two multipurpose rooms, a health studies classroom, lockers rooms, and a reception area.

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.

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KOKOMO, Ind. — Attending Indiana University Kokomo is a family tradition for Christopher Santucci.

Herbert Scholar RecipientChristopher Santucci receives the Adam W. Herbert Presidential Scholar medallion from Interim Chancellor Susan Sciame-Giesecke.The recent Kokomo High School graduate knew he wanted to follow in his sisters' footsteps by going to college there — and his selection as the campus' Adam W. Herbert Presidential Scholar made that choice even better.

"It is a huge honor to be the Herbert Scholar," he said. "I am really excited about the opportunities it gives me, and that I can earn my degree without going into debt. I am elated and relieved."

The Herbert Presidential Scholars Program offers four-year renewable scholarships, valued at $30,000, and other benefits, to exceptional Indiana students. IU President Emeritus Adam W. Herbert created the prestigious program during his tenure, as the Hoosier Presidential Scholars program. The Board of Trustees renamed it in 2007, to honor Herbert's commitment to recruiting and retaining talented young Hoosiers.

Interim Chancellor Susan Sciame-Giesecke said Santucci is an excellent recipient.

"He is an impressive young man who is focused on studying biochemistry," she said. "IU Kokomo continues to grow and attract talented students, who choose to attend our campus to earn an IU degree with a faculty committed to their success."

Santucci, 17, was a National Merit finalist, and two-time qualifier for the National Forensic League's national championships, in Birmingham, Ala.

Angela Siders, director of admissions, said he was chosen based on his exceptional high school performance, involvement, and leadership activities.

"We are proud to have him join the IU Kokomo family this fall," she said. "He will be a great asset to our School of Sciences."

The award also includes a stipend for overseas study, and a laptop. Santucci, whose parents are Christopher and Shelly Santucci of Kokomo, hopes to study in Germany, because he has studied German language in high school.

He looks forward to participating in the pre-professional club, and to seeing what other opportunities are available for campus involvement. At Kokomo High School, he participated in the debate team, speech team, National Honor Society, Science Olympiad, academic teams, and the Kokomo Mayor's Youth Advisory Council. He also works at Subway.

He plans to major in biochemistry, and then possibly work in the pharmaceutical industry.

He knew from his sisters' experiences that IU Kokomo would be a good fit for him.

His sister Erica studied radiography, and found a job immediately after graduating. His other sister, Breanna, is a junior studying elementary education.

"It's a small school, with excellent faculty, so you get individual attention and plenty of opportunities," he said. "It just seemed like the place I wanted to be. I am really excited about getting into a college classroom, and college curriculum. I can't wait to get involved."

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.

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KOKOMO, Ind. — As an artist, Abby Goley usually prefers to work alone.

Maymester Art ClassMaymester Art ClassThis week, though, she and her classmates constructed a sculpture together on the Indiana University Kokomo campus, as the final product of a Maymester class on land and environmental art.

They built their class project, "Rays of Light," from the Well House to the Earth Stage, creating sculpture from metal poles, transparencies, wire, yarn, clothesline, and Styrofoam. It will remain on display for a week or two, inspiring students to achieve their goals.

Goley, a fine arts major from Kokomo, learned about teamwork from the experience, and developed new artistic skills.

"Usually, an artist creates alone, so this was a new experience," she said. "It was interesting to have to consider everyone's ideas and opinions, and make decisions based on what everyone wants, not just what you want to do. I feel like I grew as an artist, because I usually prefer to paint or do silk screening, rather than sculpting."

John Davis, a business major from Kokomo, expected a lot of lectures when he enrolled in the class, taught by Minda Douglas, assistant professor of fine arts.

Instead, the class visited the Indianapolis Museum of Art and the Indianapolis Art Center outdoor sculpture garden, learning about contemporary art, and gathering inspiration for their own final work.

Douglas said the final project was a key component of the class.

"Making something at the end of the class is important, to use what we learned," Douglas said. "It's a creative way to learn, rather than just studying names and titles of art work and remembering them for a test. This adds another dimension to the experience."

Davis liked using what he learned to make something.

"I'm not very artistic, so I was surprised by how much I liked this class," he said. "I didn't know much about earth and environmental art, and I was surprised by how much fits into that category."

Andrea Bailey, who is completing her general studies degree during summer school, thought they would do a lot of drawing, and was happy to make sculpture instead. She enjoyed working on their project, which included transparencies of inspirational quotes hanging on clothesline by clothespins. It is meant to inspire students to persevere to achieve their goals.

"I hope anyone who sees it is encouraged to continue on with life, and push past any problems along the way," she said.

IU Kokomo's new Maymester program offers student a chance to earn three credits in a short time period, in an immersive class. A few other offerings include a creative performance class, in which students will write, act in, and direct a play; urban geology, complete with fieldwork; and a public relations campaign class that involves working with a local business or nonprofit organization

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.