Retired professor pledges 94 acres towards IU Southeast research, sustainability efforts

1st May 2017

Dr. Carl deGraaf, retired professor of educational psychology, and IU Southeast Chancellor Ray Wallace.

NEW ALBANY, Ind. — A retired professor of educational psychology has committed his farm and home for future use at IU Southeast.

The university will use Dr. Carl deGraaf’s 94 acres in Elizabeth, Indiana, for academic research, sustainability efforts, recreation and natural resource and habitat preservation. DeGraaf’s home on the property will be used for faculty and staff retreats and conferences.

Nearly half of the property is a forested area with several marked walking trails. Professor of biology and herbarium curator Dr. David Taylor has assessed the land and expects that biology students and teachers alike will use the property to study the local flora, fauna and ecology; that sustainability students will assist in managing the certified forest; that geosciences students can use the existence of sinkholes on the property for hydrological research and that ceramics students will make use of the farm’s pottery studio and kilns.

“I’ve nurtured this piece of property with the dream and the hope of sharing it with other people after I can no longer use it,” deGraaf said. “Giving the farm and its facilities to IU Southeast just makes sense. I’m thrilled to put it in the university’s care and know that people in the community can enjoy it, use it and learn from it just as I have.”

DeGraaf, who retired in 2007, has been a generous and consistent donor at IU Southeast for more than 25 years. In 2015, he established an endowment for the Karen R. deGraaf Memorial Scholarship for nursing students in honor of his late wife. He also supports the Carl A. deGraaf Scholarship for students pursuing careers in elementary education.

This gift counts toward the $2.5 billion campaign, For All: The Indiana University Bicentennial Campaign.

 For All: The Indiana University Bicentennial Campaign is taking place on all IU-administered campuses including IU Bloomington, Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis, IU East, IU Kokomo, IU Northwest, IU South Bend, and IU Southeast. The campaign will conclude in December 2019 to coincide with IU’s bicentennial year celebration in 2020. To learn more about the campaign, its impact, and how to participate, please visit Founded in 1936, the Indiana University Foundation maximizes private support for Indiana University by fostering lifelong relationships with key stakeholders and providing advancement leadership and fundraising services for campuses and units across the university. Today, the IU Foundation oversees one of the largest public university endowments in the country, with a market value of approximately $1.9 billion. In fiscal year 2015, IU received $359.3 million in support from the private sector. IU is consistently ranked among the top four of Big Ten universities in annual voluntary support.

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