December 1998


    John Kennedy once said: 'To govern is to choose . . .' If you want to do something in office besides hold it, you have to make a choice of who it is you want to help. My choice was students and teachers. Education has been the passion of my administration, and my goal as governor has been to create in my state a culture of higher expectations . . . Intellectual capital will be the business capital of the 21st century, and higher education is the most important economic infrastructure we can have.

Georgia Governor Zell Miller made those remarks during a recent meeting of the National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges in Atlanta. The subject was a report by the Kellogg-funded Commission on the Future of State and Land Grant Institutions that calls on public universities to respond to the needs of nontraditional students, improve education by engaging students in practice-based research and course work, and put their expertise and knowledge to work on community problems.

These ideas are familiar to IUPUI. They mirror our essential institutional personality -- grounded in our helping professions -- and they now have become a national benchmark for success. That puts IUPUI in the forefront as a national leader in the area of university-community engagement,.

As we review the State of the Campus for 1998, IUPUI continues to do well by traditional measures of success -- student enrollment, credit hours and minority student populations are all up over last year. We are making important progress in preparation for the upcoming Campaign for IUPUI with external support through gifts and grants increasing steadily each year, particularly for the School of Medicine.

Indeed, one of the most important forms of university engagement in Indiana's history now presents itself in the area of health, wellness, longevity, and quality of life. As a health campus, IUPUI has a unique opportunity to participate in an anticipated doubling of the National Institutes of Health budget during the next five years.

Leveraging those dollars for Indiana will advance us as a major player in health care and related industries regionally, nationally and internationally.

To improve Indiana's position in the intense competition among states responding to this new national emphasis on health-related research funding, the Indiana Health Industry Forum (IHIF), chaired by Guidant CEO Ron Dollens, is leading a major push to enhance Indiana s biomedical research infrastructure. The IHIF will ask the Indiana General Assembly to invest $125 million over five years in this statewide initiative.

Another important example of university engagement with matters of keen public interest exists in the area of information technology. The Mayor's High Technology Task Force cited several "early wins" in the development of a strong technological infrastructure for Indiana among a host of IU, Purdue and IUPUI initiatives. These included the proposed medical research park near our campus and the relocation of the Advanced Research and Technology Institute from Bloomington to Indianapolis.

There is also big news in the fact that IU and IUPUI have been selected to serve as a national operating center for two high-speed data networks, Internet2 (the Abilene Network) and the Asia Pacific Advanced Network Consortium (TransPAC). Along with the new Bloomington/Indianapolis-based IU School of Informatics, which will now include IUPUI s recently launched Program in New Media, these developments represent an unprecedented partnership between business, government, and the university that should give Indiana a significant advantage in applications of digital technologies.

As Zell Miller pointed out at the meeting I attended, "The hottest jobs are in information technology. . . . Whoever addresses this workforce need first will lead the nation and the world in economic development."

In Georgia, Zell Miller seized opportunities like these to create intellectual capital and build economic infrastructure. As a result, the state is booming, and the governor leaves office this year as one of the most popular in Georgia's history.

A draft of this year's State of the Campus address, is available for review and comment.

It makes the case that Indiana has the right elements in place and that it can - and should - take similar mutually beneficial steps to make higher education an anchor for enhanced social, economic and workforce development here in the Hoosier state.

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L. Keith Bulen's signal contributions to American political life drew an impressive array of journalists, scholars, and national party officials to IUPUI this month for a symposium in his honor on the future of the U.S. political system. Keith was the former chairman of the Marion County Republican Party.

David Broder, one of the country s most influential political writers, referred to the symposium and described Keith's legacy to American politics in his Dec. 9 column for the Washington Post (www.washingtonpost.com). In it, Broder praises Keith s superb organizational skills and commitment to the two-party system, which the journalist says is alive and well in Indiana.

Other attendees at the first annual Bulen Symposium, which was held at the University Place Conference Center on campus, included Colorado Governor Roy Romer, chairman of the Democratic National Committee; Jim Nicholson, Romer s GOP counterpart; commentators Mark Shields and Ken Bode; and state party leaders, including Indiana Republican State Chairman Mike McDaniel and Indiana Democratic leader Joe Andrew. The symposium was cochaired by William Blomquist, who chairs IUPUI's political science department, and Sheila Kennedy, assistant professor of law and public policy with the IU School of Public and Environmental Affairs at IUPUI.

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Lea E. Williams, executive director of the Women s Leadership Institute at Bennett College and author of Servants of the People: The 1960s Legacy of African American Leadership, will deliver the keynote address at the 29th Annual IUPUI Martin Luther King Dinner on Jan.18. The dinner is the city s longest standing celebration of Dr. King, and sells out well in advance. To order tickets, contact Jane Petty at the IUPUI Office of Campus Interrelations, (317) 274-5199.

IUPUI s Center for Public Service and Leadership will sponsor a Martin Luther King Service Day to encourage students, faculty, staff and the general public to recognize Dr. King s birthday as a " day on," not a "day off."

The center is organizing community service projects in neighborhoods near campus. To participate, contact the center at (317) 274-5576.

Campus recognition of Dr. King will also include the 2nd Annual IUPUI Diversity Classic, featuring the Jaguars men's basketball team in action against Belmont University at 2 p.m. in the IUPUI Gymnasium. Head coach Ron Hunter's team has earned respect in their first season of NCAA Division I competition, which has included close games with well-established basketball programs at Georgetown University and the University of Houston. A youth sports clinic at the National Institute for Fitness and Sport at IUPUI, co-sponsored by the Indiana Sports Corp., will be held prior to the game from noon to 1 p.m.

For tickets and information, call IUPUI Athletics at (317) 274-0622.

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Congratulations to Patrick J. McKeand, publisher of the award-winning IUPUI Sagamore, who received the 1998 Distinguished Newspaper Adviser Award from College Media Advisors for his work with student journalists. Last fall, he was elected regional director of the Society of Professional Journalists.

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The National Institutes of Health have awarded the IU School of Medicine $6 million for the nation s largest study ever on the genetics of Parkinson's disease, a degenerative neurological disorder that affects more than 1 million people in the U.S. A massive screening of 50,000 patients at 40 North American medical centers will identify 400 pairs of siblings to study.

Actor Michael J. Fox drew attention to the debilitating effects of the disease in a recent interview with Barbara Walters on ABC' s "20/20." Incidentally, m y daughter, Arminda Bepko, is the operations producer for the "20/20" broadcasts on ABC.

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Because gifts to Indiana s public and private colleges and universities are rewarded with income tax credits, we enclose a CC-40 form in the hope that you will consider a contribution to higher education by making a gift to the institution of your choice.

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Wishing you a joyous holiday season,

Gerald L. Bepko, Chancellor