Indiana University Kokomo

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KOKOMO, Ind. — Indiana University Kokomo celebrated the end of the second annual Homecoming festivities with a men's basketball victory and a trailer full of tornado relief supplies.

Men's Basketball vs Point Park UniversityKingston pumps the crowd up during the game. See more photos.Donations were overflowing to help victims of the November 17 tornadoes that devastated parts of Kokomo. Cheerleaders accepted monetary donations as well, bringing in $1,200 for the United Way of Howard County, which is organizing relief efforts.

The campus appreciates a $500 donation from Community First Bank, given after the student who attempted the half court shot for a scholarship missed.

Interim Chancellor Susan Sciame-Giesecke thanked students, alumni, faculty, staff, and fans for helping the campus give to people affected by the tornadoes.

"I am so proud of the tremendous participation in this effort," she said. "Thank you to everyone for supporting this project. This is a wonderful opportunity to give directly back to our community."

United Way President Abbie Smith was thankful for the donations.

"It's amazing the support and love everyone has shown for Kokomo," she said. "We've been touched by the student support in our community, led by the IU Kokomo students."

A T-shirt exchange during Homecoming week benefitted typhoon relief efforts in the Philippines. Students received a free IU Kokomo shirt by turning in a shirt from another college or university. J.R. Pico, lecturer in Spanish, and Ligaya McGovern, professor of sociology, collected the shirts to send to the Philippines.

For recent graduate Jacob Faust, Homecoming offered a chance to see the new Cougar gym. The former basketball player was the first student athlete to graduate, earning his degree in business in May. He now works for an accounting firm in Indianapolis, and is preparing for his CPA exam.

"It's neat to see the new gym," he said. "I'm glad the team has a place of their own to practice and play. I've been following them, and it's fun to see the progress the program has made in the last few months."

Homecoming Dance on the Red Carpet 2013Homecoming Dance on the Red Carpet. See more photos.Alumni Donna Walden and Stephen Daily, who were both inducted into the IU Kokomo Alumni Association Hall of Fame Saturday, remembered the campus's early days. Both were students when the Main Building was brand new, and was the only campus building. Daily recalled that the parking lot was gravel at the time.

Daily earned a bachelor's degree in education in 1971. He was mayor of Kokomo from 1980 to 1987, and now serves as chancellor of Ivy Tech Community College Region 5.

"For those of us who were there when IU Kokomo first started, today has a good feeling to it," he said. "I'm really proud of what this campus has been able to do."

Walden, who retired as assistant superintendent of Western School Corporation, earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in education at IU Kokomo.

"It's like coming home again," she said. "When I was there, the campus was just one building. I've been so excited about all the changes, especially the sports program. It really brings a lot of culture to the campus. I enjoy the excitement, and seeing everyone enthused about IU Kokomo."

Mary Olk returned for her first Homecoming, after graduating in August. She is currently a graduate student at Ball State.

"IU Kokomo was my home for four years. It's amazing how everything has grown and changed, even just in the last few months," she said. "I was so excited to tour the new Cole Fitness Center, and to see my friends, faculty, and colleagues. I am glad to see the traditions that started while I was here are continuing."

Those traditions include school spirit competitions held during Homecoming week. Student Union Board (SUB) emerged as grand champion, winning the sheet banner competition, tying for second in the flag football tournament, and winning second place in the cell phone video contest. SUB had 100 percent participation in the fast-a-thon, which raised nearly $300 for Kokomo Urban Outreach.

"We're so excited to win," said Sofia Stout, SUB public relations coordinator. "We're all about student life, and building traditions. Hopefully, when we come back as alumni, these traditions will still be part of our campus.

The Enactus business student organizations placed second, followed by Phi Kappa Tau fraternity colony.

Allison Morgan and Charlotte Lowe received the Cougar Spirit Award, based on academic excellence and campus involvement.

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.

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KOKOMO, Ind. – The IU Kokomo Crescendos are ready to rock this Christmas with their annual holiday production of, "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree."

Naughty and Nice by Crescendos and Diminuendos"Our show gets everyone into the spirit of Christmas. We usually have a themed Act 1; this year will be rock, and a stand and sing sacred music for Act 2.  This year will be no different," said Alexander.

"Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" show dates and times are Friday, December 6, at 7 p.m. in IU Kokomo's Havens Auditorium, and Friday, December 13, at 7 p.m. at Peru High School. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and seating will be first come first serve.

All shows performed by the Crescendos are free and are open to the community

The Crescendos are a non-auditioned seasoned show choir of 84 students, alumni and community members. Within the Crescendos is a smaller group called the Diminuendos that are a hand selected a-cappella group.

"This choir shows the community and region that IU Kokomo is always growing and doing great things. It gives students and community members a place to perform and have a great time while building a family," said Alexander.  "Several community members have re-enrolled in school and some high school students have chosen IU Kokomo all due to their involvement in this group.  Also, it keeps alumni connected and proud of their university."

The Crescendos will hold open auditions for their spring musical, "The Producers." Auditions will be January 13 and 14 in the Main Building, Room 148. You do not have to be a member of the Crescendos to audition. Show dates are the first two weekends in May.

For more information, contact Rick Alexander at (765) 210-4000.

Story written by Sofia Stout. Sofia is an intern for the Office of Media and Marketing.

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.

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KOKOMO, Ind. — Wayne James takes his oath of office as Indiana University Kokomo's chief of police, in a ceremony Friday, November 22.

Swearing in of IU Kokomo Chief of Police Wayne JamesWayne James takes the oath of office. See more photos.James, 33, said the ceremony, in Kresge Auditorium, was a special occasion for him, because so many people who are important in his life and career attended.

"To be sworn in in front of so many people who have supported me throughout my career makes it even more special," he said. "I always wanted to be a police officer, and to be a chief is an added bonus."

Interim Chancellor Susan Sciame-Giesecke congratulated James, and said the campus benefits from his leadership.

"What has impressed me most about Wayne is his proactive approach to campus safety," she said. "He has met with faculty, staff, and students to make sure they see the campus police as resources. I am confident he will continue to guide us as we continue to grow, and meet the challenges that come with growth."

James was especially proud to have his long-time mentor, Lieutenant Jerry Williams, pin on his badge during the ceremony. Williams is district commander for the Indiana State Police Lowell Post.

Williams met the new chief nearly 20 years ago, when James worked at an Ace Hardware Store in Lake County, Indiana. Williams visited the store several times each week, and encouraged him to pursue a law enforcement career.

"This is a proud time, to see this young man sworn in," Williams said. "He has never missed an opportunity to learn and advance himself. He has worked in one of the most challenging environments in Indiana, and he will bring that experience to IU Kokomo. This campus has the right man for the job."

James began his job October 1. Prior to that, he was operations lieutenant for the IU Police Department Northwest, in Gary. He began as a patrol officer there in 2009. He received a medal of valor in 2011, for actions during an off-campus incident that helped save a man's life and secure a suspected shooter.

As police chief at IU Kokomo, he will provide leadership, direction, and oversight for all campus law enforcement functions.

Law enforcement officials from around the state attended Friday's ceremony. Those attending include Chief Laury Flint, IU Bloomington Police Department; Deputy Chief Bob True, IUPUI Police Department; Chief Patricia Nowak, IU Northwest Police Department; Chief Rob Baker and Major Brian Seldon, Kokomo Police Department; Sheriff Steven Rogers and Lieutenant Kurt Goerges, Howard County Sheriff Department; Kokomo-Howard County Consolidated Communications Director Nicholas Capozzoli, Deputy Chief Cliff Sessoms, Marion Police Department; Corporal Nina Evans, Gary Police Department; Officer Morris Smooth, Cedar Lake Police Department; Lieutenant Jeremy Kelly, Indiana State Police; and Lieutenant Jerry Williams, Indiana State Police Lowell District Commander.

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.

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KOKOMO, Ind. — Cougars and Jaguars work together to double the amount of food donated to Kokomo Urban Outreach (KUO) from the annual Enactus Can-struction food drive.

Students donate food for tornado reliefStudents donate food for tornado relief.Enactus, a business student organization, collects nonperishable food items throughout the school year, and hosts a competition during Homecoming. Student groups use canned and boxed food items to build structures, and then all the food goes to the local nonprofit, which distributes it through its food pantries.

The need is greater than ever, because of a tornado that hit Kokomo on November 17. Naturally, Leann Cook, Enactus president, was thrilled when an Indiana University — Purdue University Indianapolis group offered to give items from its recent drive.

"I thought it was just awesome that they reached out to help another IU group when our community is in need," Cook said. "It reminds us that while we are IU Kokomo Cougars, and they are IUPUI Jaguars – we are all IU."

IUPUI students delivered three truckloads on Saturday (November 23), containing about 1,200 food items. Enactus volunteers took that donation, together with the 1,300 items they collected to Kokomo Urban Outreach.

Adam Smith, an Enactus co-sponsor, said the urban outreach workers who unloaded the first was truckload were stunned to hear there was yet another truckload, plus an SUV filled with food. It won't last long, as the neighborhood around KUO was among the hardest hit by the tornado.

"The food drive hit home a little more this year because of the devastation," Cook said. "We're not just stocking the pantries because it's not just going to sit there. There are people who need it right now, immediately."

Joe Spaulding is one of two student coordinators for Paw's Pantry, IUPUI's campus food pantry. He said their annual Jam the Jaguars Food Pantry event November 21 brought in 2.1 tons of nonperishable foods.

After filling the campus pantry, organizers planned to send the extra to other Indianapolis food banks.

"With such an abundance of food, it just made sense to reach out a helping hand to IU Kokomo and the surrounding community, to help with tornado relief efforts," he said. "On behalf of Paw's Pantry, the IUPUI Division of Student Affairs, and IUPUI as a whole, I want to say that positive thoughts and prayers are with IU Kokomo and its community."

The donation brings Enactus halfway to its goal of collecting 5,000 food items during the school year. The group received a Campbell's "Let's Can Hunger" award to assist its efforts.

The student group's next canned food drive, "Can Your Professor," is Monday, December 2, through Thursday, December 4. Students vote with nonperishable food items to determine which of three business faculty members will go to "jail," choosing among Dmitry Chulkov, Linda Ficht, and David Rink.

Cook said the need for food is ongoing. She wants to be sure students don't forget about this need as the community recovers from the tornado.

"Hunger was a persistent problem before, and is heightened by the disaster," she said. "We're amazed at how deep the need is on our community. We want students to know they can contribute and make a difference."

Indiana University Kokomo serves north central Indiana.