February 11, 2022

The Report

Commissioner Teresa Lubbers awarded IU president’s highest honor

This past Wednesday (Feb. 9), Indiana Commissioner for Higher Education Teresa Lubbers was awarded Indiana University’s President’s Medal for Excellence in recognition of her distinguished service to Indiana and to higher education. The medal is the highest honor the university’s president can bestow.

Lubbers is stepping down as commissioner in March after 13 years in the role and following the legislative session.

IU President Pamela Whitten presented Lubbers with the award at a special event held prior to one of Lubbers’ final commission meetings, which was held on the IUPUI campus. 

In her remarks, Whitten praised the positive impact that Lubbers has had on ensuring the success of Indiana students and in positioning the state’s public universities for sustained progress in the years ahead. 

“In my first seven months on the job, her positive impact on students during her tenure as commissioner has been incredibly clear: completion rates are up, borrowing is down and tuition rates at Indiana’s public universities are among the lowest in the nation,” Whitten said. 

The day before, Lubbers delivered her 10th and final State of Higher Education address at the Indiana Statehouse before an audience that included Whitten and education, government, business and community leaders from across the state. In the address, Lubbers reflected on her 13 years of service and the challenges and opportunities facing higher education in the Hoosier state. She also shared evidence of how Indiana and its higher education institutions continue to transform higher education to meet the diverse needs of learners and a changing economy.

"Higher education is often labeled as not being adaptable, but I believe this is a lagging narrative," she said. "Over the past two years due to the impact of COVID, we've seen institutions adjust how they deliver education and respond to changing needs."

"We know higher education is capable of change,” she added. “By prioritizing overall quality and focusing on affordability, access and relevance, Indiana's higher education system will be poised to adapt to future uncertainties."

Read the full 2022 State of Higher Education address


Statehouse Update

The sixth week of session continued to pick up pace after the intersession break. The House has six more business days to hear Senate bills in committee and the Senate has eight more business days to hear House bills. IU State Relations anticipates significant bill movement next week as legislators negotiate which bills will continue to move through the process.

Statehouse Update • February 11, 2022


IU News

Dubois County, Center for Rural Engagement partner on Sustaining Hoosier Communities projects

IU and Dubois County are expanding their community development collaboration with the Center for Rural Engagement's Sustaining Hoosier Communities initiative. The initiative, which represents an estimated value of $150,000 in research and other hours, connects IU Bloomington to local projects focused on health and wellness, infrastructure planning, and natural resource management. Dubois County has actively worked with the Center for Rural Engagement on community projects since 2018. Read the full story


Architectural design approved for new School of Medicine education building

The IU Board of Trustees approved the architectural design of the new IU School of Medicine Medical Education Building in Indianapolis. The Medical Education Building, to be co-located with the Indianapolis Academic Health Center in development by IU Health, will be west of Senate Street and south of the IU Neurosciences Research Building in Indianapolis. This facility will house faculty and students from the IU School of Medicine, and it will address growing medical education and research needs of programs in the school. Read the full story


Accomplished finance leader to join IU as executive vice president 

In support of a continued commitment to stewardship and growth of university resources, Indiana University has appointed its first executive vice president for finance and administration. Dwayne Pinkney will take on the leadership role next month. Pinkney, who currently serves as senior vice president and chief business officer at Virginia Tech, will bring to IU more than 25 years of experience in budget and financial management in state government and higher education. Read the full story


Two-time IU alumnus to serve as vice president and general counsel

An accomplished, civically engaged attorney and Indiana University alumnus, Anthony "Tony" Prather has been named IU's vice president and general counsel. "As an outstanding lawyer with a long and deep commitment to IU, Tony brings a high degree of integrity, along with a collegial and collaborative approach to this key role on our senior leadership team," said IU President Pamela Whitten. Read the full story


Nationally recognized communications and marketing leader to join IU

Nancy E. Paton, a transformational communications leader in higher education and health care, will assume the role of vice president and chief communications and marketing officer at Indiana University, pending approval of the Board of Trustees. Paton will lead strategy for integrated marketing and communications to advance the academic reputation and overall perception of the IU brand. Read full story


IU alumni-led ag tech startup generating more buzz and investment

The Bee Corp, a pioneering agricultural technology startup founded by two IU alumni and headquartered in Indianapolis, is receiving additional investment from IU Ventures, which leads IU's investment in high-potential new venture opportunities with strong university connections. The Bee Corp will use its latest investment from IU to further the development of pioneering technology being used by commercial growers and beekeepers to sustain healthy crop production. The company's CEO Ellie Symes, who co-founded the start-up business in 2016 along with another IU student, discussed The Bee Corp's rapid growth and development on last week's episode of the Ag+Bio+Science podcast, produced by Inside INdiana Business in conjunction with AgriNovus Indiana. Read the full story

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