October 1998


We reported in the June newsletter on two outstanding additions to our faculty, Herman J. Saatkamp, Jr., dean of the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI and John J. Kirlin, director of our Center for Urban Policy and the Environment. In the meantime, some new leaders with equally prominent reputations and experience at top-flight institutions have been recruited to campus. They are:

Charlie Nelms, previously chancellor of the University of Michigan's Flint campus, was recruited earlier this year by IU President Myles Brand to lead university-wide diversity and student retention programs. With Myles's approval, we recruited Charlie to also be Interim Vice Chancellor for Student Life and Diversity at IUPUI. Charlie will help put in place two major ingredients for our student learning-centered campus: the new Student Center and new Office of Student Life and Diversity. Charlie knows IU well, having served as dean at IU Northwest in Gary and chancellor of IU East in Richmond.

Mark L. Brenner will also fill a new position as IU associate vice president and IUPUI vice chancellor for research and graduate programs. This dual reporting line to IU and IUPUI underscores the concept of IU Bloomington and IUPUI jointly serving as the core of the university's research, graduate, and professional programs. As the former vice president for research at the University of Minnesota, Mark is a national leader and innovator in research administration, qualities that will help IU and IUPUI continue to build a research infrastructure that enhances Indiana's economic prosperity.

Susan Kahn, director of programs and planning in IUPUI's Office of Faculty and Senior Staff Development, earned national attention as director of the University of Wisconsin's faculty development programs. She is the national director of a Pew Charitable Trusts project aimed at improving public communication and quality assurance at six leading urban universities -- including IUPUI, through the use of institutional portfolios that chart what we are doing, how well and with what. Project results to date are being posted at this web site: http://www.imir.iupui.edu/portfolio/.

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IUPUI's University College was dedicated this month. Established to put undergraduate students and their learning at the core of our campus mission, University College signals a coming of age for our campus and an important step by IUPUI to the forefront of urban higher education.

U.S. Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley, who participated in the dedication ceremony, praised University College as an important way to help curb the nation's high college dropout rate. "IUPUI is taking the initiative by stepping up recruitment and retention of undergraduates, connecting students with faculty mentors, reaching out with academic counseling services and creating an orientation course for new undergraduates," he said.

Secretary Riley also received IUPUI's first Urban University Medal, created to recognize those whose work enhances the quality of life in our nation's cities.

William Browne, president of RATIO Architects, was praised for his firm's renovation of the old library as the new home for University College. Using every square foot as efficiently as possible, RATIO succeeded in creating an atmosphere that would both make students feel at home and offer the collaborative learning environment envisioned by the faculty.

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The IU School of Medicine will join two state organizations to help Hoosiers select the highest quality and most cost-effective medical care. With the Indiana State Medical Association and Indiana Hospital and Health Association, Indiana's Eye on Patients will conduct public opinion research, collect case studies, survey patients, build health care databases and analyze ways to improve patient-doctor communication.

A significant part of the Indiana's Eye on Patients will be a study by the School of Medicine of differences among Indiana communities in terms of surgical procedures, Medicare spending and admission rates.

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At the turn of the last millennium, you were considered old if you reached 50. By 1990, however, some 36,000 Americans were more than 100 years old. The Census Bureau predicts that by 2030, those having reached the century mark will number 435,000 -- a 12-fold increase in only 40 years.

The nation's attentions are increasingly turning to enhancing longevity and preserving a high quality of life for our elderly population. The IU Center for Aging Research at IUPUI was founded with just such a prospect in mind. Through research in the IU Schools of Medicine, Nursing, Allied Health Sciences, Dentistry, Optometry, Social Work and others, it will provide an invaluable resource for older Hoosiers, their advocates and loved ones, and policy makers. Its director, Christopher Callahan has been honored by the National Institute on Aging and the American Federation for Aging Research for his work on health service delivery to older adults. The Regenstrief Institute for Health Care is also among those that have supported its growth.

Established with $1.5 million in funding from IU's Strategic Directions Charter, IUPUI, and our health schools, the Center for Aging Research represents a signal commitment by IU to the health and well-being of Indiana's senior citizens. Its first annual report includes a directory of more than 100 IU faculty who conduct behavioral, biomedical and social research on aging, identifies and summarizes their research interests and provides information on how to get in touch with them. Its web page (www.iupui.edu/~iucar/) includes a searchable database that sorts faculty experts by name, campus and research interest.

The IU Center for Aging Research just received notice of a five-year $500,000 grant from the National Institute on Aging. The funds will be used, in part, to provide resources for faculty development in aging research and an expansion of clinical research sites to community settings.

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IUPUI has also received $870,000 from the National Institutes of Health to study how prenatal alcohol abuse harms the developing brain. While health schools tend to earn a larger share of NIH funding, this grant goes to Charles R. Goodlett, associate professor of psychology in the Purdue School of Science at IUPUI -- evidence that the interdisciplinary IU/Purdue collaborations we have fostered across schools will help make IUPUI a leading health university.

Professor Goodlett's research will identify how alcohol-induced loss of neurons damage specific neurological circuits in the brain that control particular types of learning. The study will focus on four areas of the animal cerebellum and brain stem, then evaluate those for long-lasting deficits in the ability of neurons to change signaling processes over the course of learning. See www.psynt.iupui.edu/psych/frame/frames1.htm for more information on this research.

A story in the Indianapolis Star recently reported on the importance of nursing research and the changing face of the nursing profession The newspaper reported that, nationally, nearly 10 percent of the nation's 2.1 million nurses hold master's or doctorate degrees. Of Indiana's roughly 45,000 nurses, nearly 6 percent have advanced degrees.

Among the outstanding researchers from the IU School of Nursing faculty mentioned in the article were University Dean and Distinguished Professor Angela Barron McBride. Others were Joan Austin, who has for more than a decade received significant NIH funding to study behavioral problems in children with epilepsy, and Vickie Champion, associate dean of research for the school, who is one of the nation's top authorities on the prevention of breast cancer and whose work is heavily funded by both the NIH and the American Cancer Society.

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The IUPUI Jaguars are faring well in their first season of NCAA Division I competition.

Last month, the women's volleyball team defeated Iowa State and won the Wright State tournament in Dayton, Ohio. IUPUI Senior Cory Pepperworth was the tournament MVP.

The women's soccer team defeated Western Illinois, and the men's team played valiantly against Notre Dame, ranked 22nd in the county, losing 0-1 in overtime at South Bend.

The Jaguars men's basketball home game on December 7 against Mid-Continent Conference rival, the University of Missouri at Kansas City, will be televised at 8:30 p.m. by LeSea Broadcasting, the first time an IUPUI intercollegiate game will be nationally televised. The local carrier for LeSea Broadcasting is WHMB-TV.

Season tickets for all Jaguar home games, including the Division I basketball team, are a modest $45 for the entire 1998-99 season. For ticket information, call the IUPUI Athletic Department at (317) 274-0622.

Go Jaguars!

Gerald L. Bepko, Chancellor