As enrollment tops 5,000, new programs greet incoming students


around-campus-2473The University of Indianapolis enjoyed a record number of full-time undergrads for the 11th straight year last fall. Full-time day undergraduates—the “traditional” college student—totaled about 3,050 for the fall semester, which brought 810 freshmen and 220 transfer students to campus. Graduate, evening, and part-time students brought the total 2013–14 enrollment to around 5,300.

Hailing from 15 states and 16 nations, the freshman class of Greyhounds boasted an average high school GPA of 3.45 and included 16 valedictorians and five salutatorians. Popular majors among new students included health-related programs such as nursing, pre-physical therapy, exercise science, athletic training, pre-med, and biology, as well as communication, business, and sport management. A number of new programs and initiatives debuted last fall, in addition to the Professional Edge Center.

Student advising

Student advising functions, previously housed in individual academic departments, have been consolidated into a campuswide Center for Advising and Student Achievement. CASA helps each student develop an individualized program of courses and extracurricular activities—a Greyhound Plan—to match his or her interests and goals.

New programs in sustainability, business

Environmental Sustainability is a new interdisciplinary major/minor combining courses in biology, anthropology, English, international relations, and other subjects to prepare graduates for careers in public policy, private industry, or nonprofit work related to sustainability in energy, climate, food, and water. Also, UIndy’s new one-year, full-time MBA is the only one in the Indianapolis area, ideal for recent graduates seeking to boost their marketability with just one additional year of study, international students seeking an efficient route to a U.S. business credential, and graduates in fields such as arts or health care who plan to start their own businesses.

Student-run agencies

In the tradition of the national award-winning Top Dog Communication, UIndy’s student-run PR agency, other departments across campus have launched student-run creative agencies to render free services to campus and local nonprofit groups while providing real-world experience for students. They include One14 Design Studio in the Department of Art & Design, Greyhound Production Services in the Department of Theatre, and the Imagination Emporium in the multidisciplinary Experience Design program.

CAC touts livable communities

The Center for Aging & Community continues to focus on the concepts of livable communities and aging in place. Associate Professor Sharon Baggett is working with the MidNorth Senior Advocacy group to develop and implement a survey to determine what older residents in the Indianapolis MidNorth neighborhoods need in order to successfully age in place. Baggett is continuing her work with the “Leadership for Planning Advocacy” grant from the Governor’s Council on People with Disabilities. Through this project, Baggett is part of a team that will train older adults and persons with disabilities in Richmond and Bedford, Indiana, to become effective advocates for age and ability friendly communities. In the fall of 2014, CAC will offer a Home Modifications course similar to the Home Sweet Home: Modifications for Aging in Place course it has offered through the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority. The course is designed for occupational therapists, interior designers, contractors and others interested in aging in place.