By Steven Krolak
(NEW ALBANY, Ind.)–New degree programs, expanded online offerings, advanced websites for adult learners and graduate studies.
These were among a bevy of academic initiatives and administrative advances unveiled at a recent event for local business leaders at IU Southeast.
The Appreciation Luncheon brought prominent partners and friends of the university to the Hoosier Room to learn more about how new and existing IU Southeast programs and structures can help support workforce development in the Kentuckiana region.
The event was made possible by a grant from the Regional Economic Development Fund (RED) of the IU Council on Regional Engagement and Economic Development (CREED).
The RED Fund serves as a key component of Innovate Indiana, IU’s collective efforts to leverage the university’s vast expertise and resources to strengthen the state’s economy.
In introductory remarks, Chancellor Dr. Ray Wallace drove home the point that regional economic development is central to the mission of IU Southeast, and that new programs are intended not only to meet current needs but to enable graduates to blaze new trails in emerging fields.
Wendy Dant Chesser, president and CEO of One Southern Indiana, emphasized both the challenges and the opportunities of the current state of the regional economy. A IU Southeast alumna (B.S. in business management, 1991), she drew attention to the role of education in driving prosperity.
Those sentiments were buttressed by Dr. Uric Dufrene, executive vice chancellor for academic affairs, who presented data demonstrating the correlation between academic outcomes and career success. Dufrene, who also delivers the regional economic update twice yearly, outlined the need of local employers for skilled, educated labor.
As the character of that need changes to emphasize leadership and cross-disciplinary capabilities, so does the role of the university. New academic offerings, such as the Masters in Nursing, indicate that IU Southeast is working proactively to create pathways to advancement within existing sectors. At the same time, a growing range of certificates enable current students and graduates to add skills to their resumes and become more attractive to employers. A redesigned website for graduate programs and a new website for evening and online courses to make it easier for prospective students—especially adult learners—to find options for advancement at all stages of their academic journeys.
IU Southeast staff rolled out advances in key areas such as career development and internships, tuition reimbursement and website design in order to build awareness of how the university can serve as a resource, and can partner with local employers to transform good students into great leaders.
Homepage photo: Chancellor Dr. Ray Wallace addresses regional business leaders and friends of the university at the recent Appreciation Luncheon.