Six IUPUI students have organized a central Indiana fund raising effort for victims of Hurricane Mitch. The storm swept through Central America earlier this month, killing 13,000 people in Honduras and Nicaragua and leaving thousands more homeless and destitute.
All donations to the fund will be sent directly to recovery efforts in those two countries via the Church World Service, which is working with groups in Central America to support storm victims.
The students are part of the IU Center on Philanthropy's Jane Addams-Andrew Carnegie Fellowship Program, which encourages graduate students to participate in the philanthropic tradition through work and study.
Donations to the Hurricane Mitch Relief Fund Drive will be accepted through Dec. 15. For more information, call (317) 278-2706.
Joanne Martin, an associate professor at the IU School of Nursing, has been named national director of the Healthy Families America campaign to combat child abuse and raise awareness about early childhood development.
Joanne was instrumental in establishing 46 Healthy Family programs in Indiana during the past five years. She also serves on the steering committee of Gov. Frank O'Bannon's "Building Bright Beginnings" initiative, started in January to connect parents of Hoosier newborns with information and support services.
The governor recently announced plans to seek funding to expand the program and establish a research and education institute on early childhood development.
The 1998 Reauthorization of the Higher Education Act signed by President Clinton last month should benefit urban universities by making higher education more accessible, affordable and flexible for low-income and nontraditional students.
Interest rates for federal student loans were cut to an estimated 7.5 percent, which would save current borrowers $700 on a $13,000 loan. The maximum amount for Pell Grants, an important federal aid program for low-income students, will be increased from $3,000 this year to $5,800 by 2003, and recipients will be allowed to earn more income without losing eligibility.
The legislation also expands financial aid eligibility for off-campus distance education programs used by many nontraditional students and provides grants to create model distance learning programs that engender institutional partnerships and innovative use of new technologies.
More than 1,200 students and their families attended IUPUI's fall Campus Day this month. A popular attraction were computer work stations that allowed users to search an online database of 300,000 college scholarships. Potential students were also given information on IUPUI employment opportunities allowing them to work on campus while earning degrees.
Beginning in January, IUPUI will offer an onsite college degree completion program for employees of the federal Defense Finance and Accounting Service -- Indianapolis Center.
Employees can enroll in classes taught at the center by the IU Kelley School of Business, the IU School of Continuing Studies and the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology. Employees with associate degrees or some college credit can earn bachelor's degrees in business, general studies, computer technology and organizational leadership. Graduate courses in business administration and professional accountancy will also be offered at the center.
IUPUI will provide employees with student advising000, course registration and other academic services. The program was crafted by IUPUI's Community Learning Network to help employees complete their undergraduate degrees or get advanced education in academic disciplines that are central to the center's mission. For information, call (317) 274-9840.
IUPUI University Libraries has received a $290,000 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services to test Internet delivery of an extensive fine art image database culled from some of the nation's leading art collections.
The libraries are working with K-12 educators and public libraries in central Indiana to determine best methods for offering schools and the general public free access to the database. The digital database includes 20,000 two-dimensional images of works housed within 26 North American museums, including the Art Institute of Chicago, the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
The museums are part of the national Art Museum Image Consortium, which has selected IUPUI and 21 other universities -- including Yale, Princeton, Harvard and Columbia -- to serve as educational test sites for distribution of the image database.
IUPUI's participation in several recent conferences illustrates how the campus can serve the community as a crossroads of thought.
In recognition of the 50th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, IUPUI last month hosted the 2nd International Conference on Women in Africa and the African Diaspora. By examining recent health trends affecting women of African descent, an array of international participants discussed how health intersects with global human rights, economic development, education, the environment, politics, arts and culture, and ethnic conflicts.
The conference convener was Obioma Nnaemeka of the French and Women's Studies programs at IUPUI, who is also president of the Association of African Women Scholars.
The Spirit and Place Festival, coordinated by the Polis Center at IUPUI, has for the past three years sought to explore relationships between spirituality and community in Indianapolis through collaborative, citywide discussions featuring national and local authors, artists and civic leaders.
A highlight of the this year's Spirit and Place Festival, held earlier this month, was a mock trial on the whether the city should build a $100 million Contemporary Arts Laboratory. Sarah Evans Barker, chief judge of the U.S. District Court for Southern Indiana and member of IUPUI's Board of Advisors, presided over arguments presented for and against the arts laboratory by some of the city's leading trial attorneys, including IU School of Law--Indianapolis alums Linda L. Pence and Robert F. Wagner as well as Edward O. Delaney and Sandra D. Leek. The trial was held at the Jewish Community Center's Laikin Auditorium and organized by the POLIS Center and the NUVO's Cultural Institute.
The difficulty of rendering an artistic vision into film, music or other media was the topic for a recent seminar hosted by IUPUI's New Media program and Indianapolis Heartland Film Festival.
Issues of the Creative Process featured some of the country's leading film makers, who stressed the need to stay true to their values throughout the process. The Heartland Film Festival has evolved into one of the country's leading forums for film makers dedicated to the expression of hope, respect and other positive life values. To learn more about the festival, go to www.heartlandfilmfest.org