June 17, 2022

The Report

IU celebrates 50th anniversary of the Pell Grant

Next week, Indiana University will join leading colleges, universities and other educational institutions across the country in celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Federal Pell Grant Program, a need-based government aid program for higher education that has provided educational funding to more than 80 million American students. The Pell Grant is the largest grant program offered by the U.S. Department of Education to undergraduate students, and it has played a central role in the nation's efforts to ensure students from low- and moderate-income households have the opportunity to earn a college degree and experience lifelong opportunities for success.

Wednesday, June 23, will mark 50 years since the signing into law of the Education Amendments of 1972, which established the Basic Educational Opportunity Grant. The grant was renamed in 1980 in honor of Sen. Claiborne Pell of Rhode Island, the chief congressional sponsor of the program.

In the ensuing years, the Federal Pell Grant Program has provided hundreds of thousands of IU students with access to a first-rate education. During the 2020-21 academic year, 20,989 students received a Pell Grant, with a total volume of awards reaching $92.3 million. 

In addition, IU's core campuses in Bloomington and Indianapolis continue to offer additional wraparound support for Pell-eligible students. IU Bloomington automatically considers in-state students who qualify for a Federal Pell Grant with the IU Pell Promise Award for the same semester. This award pays tuition and mandatory fees that are not covered by the Federal Pell Grant or other types of gift aid. IUPUI offers the IUPUI Pledge Grant, which can be as high as $4,000 annually based on financial need and requires recipients to have a 21st Century Scholarship or Frank O'Bannon Grant from the state.

In the fall 2021 semester, IUPUI had more than 6,900 undergraduate students receive Pell Grants, while Bloomington had nearly 6,000 recipients. IU's regional campuses -- IU East, IU Kokomo, IU Northwest, IU South Bend and IU Southeast -- enrolled another nearly 6,200 Pell awardees, representing almost a third of IU's Pell total.

At a time when financial aid applications have dropped nationally among high school graduates, IU continues to emphasize the importance and impact of federal student aid. At IU Bloomington, this helped drive a 23% increase in Pell Grant-eligible students in 2021, with a record of more than 1,700 students in the campus' beginning class arriving with the grant.

Nationwide, the Pell Grant continues to enjoy strong bipartisan support, which paved the way for a $400 dollar increase in the maximum grant award in the fiscal year 2022 omnibus legislation -- the largest increase to the Pell in over 10 years.

The thousands of IU students who receive the Pell Grant each year -- and the nearly seven million low- and moderate-income students who receive the grant annually and who come from all 50 states and all corners of the country -- suggest a consistent need for heightened funding for the program. To this end, IU remains committed to ensuring that quality, higher education is affordable and accessible to all students, and will continue to advocate for a strong and robust program that ensures the Pell Grant remains a viable option for future generations.


Economic Engagement Update

IU Ventures realizes significant investment milestones, advances Indiana-based companies, honors valued contributions

Marking the first time the IU Philanthropic Venture Fund and the IU Angel Network have co-invested in the same round, IU Ventures recently provided dual support to Folia, a Bloomington-based innovative business annotation software platform that completed raising $2 million in its latest round of seed funding.

Through this milestone investment from two of its major funds, IU Ventures, IU's early-stage venture and angel investment arm, generated over 50% of the total amount in Folia's round. The IU Angel Network's commitment to Folia represents its largest single investment to date.

Led by co-founder and CEO Ravi Bhatt, an IU alumnus who recently relocated to Bloomington, Foila is poised to build and grow its business in Indiana, creating significant high-quality technology-based job opportunities for Hoosiers.  

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Last week, Indianapolis-based software company Encamp announced it has secured $30 million in its latest funding round to further develop its innovative environmental compliance platform. IU Ventures was the first "institutional" investor in Encamp, providing more than $775,000 in financial support for the company, which was founded by Luke Jacobs and Daniel Smedema, graduates of IU Bloomington's College of Arts and Sciences. 

Encamp has used its early investments from IU Ventures to dramatically expand its business operations and workforce and continue to improve its software platform. Nearly 200 businesses (double the number from 2019) now use Encamp in more than 8,000 regulated facilities throughout the U.S., including a growing number of businesses listed in the Fortune 1000 and Fortune 100. The company's growth also includes a 500% increase in annual recurring revenue in 2021 and a 200% increase in its workforce of around 60 software engineers, product developers, environmental consultants, customer experience professionals, and sales and marketing staff, with the goal to more than double again by the end of this year.

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During its recent IU Founders and Funders Network Venture Summit, IU Ventures honored three distinguished individuals with the Spirit of Venture Award for their contributions to advancing IU's and Indiana's entrepreneurial ecosystem. 

The annual award celebrates the spirit of entrepreneurship and innovation across the entire statewide university community. Award recipients for 2022 include:

  • Gary J. Anderson, retired managing general partner and senior advisor of TL Ventures, one of the venture capital industry's most prestigious technology investment groups;

  • Pat East, executive director of The Mill, a premier nonprofit center for entrepreneurship and coworking headquartered in Bloomington; and

  • Jane Martin, retired venture capitalist and former general partner at U.S. Venture Partners, a leading venture capital firm in Silicon Valley.

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Statehouse Update

On May 24, the General Assembly's Legislative Council announced summer study topics for the interim between now and the 2023 session.

Statehouse Update • Jun 17, 2022


Upcoming Events

1st Amendment: Youth Voice to Action – Free teacher training workshop

This one-day professional development workshop offered by IU's Center on Representative Government will support teachers across the state who want to incorporate civics content into their teaching. The 1st Amendment: Youth Voice to Action program models a teaching methodology that focuses on an inquiry-to-action approach. This will be especially helpful for those who might be teaching Indiana's new civics course beginning in Fall 2023.

Learn more and register 


IU News

Brightest-known solid materials, invented at IU, awarded $1.8 million from NSF

A federal grant program created to spur the United States' global competitiveness by speeding the manufacture of high-tech materials has awarded $1.8 million to Indiana University researchers who discovered the world's brightest-known fluorescent solid materials. Known as SMILES, these materials have the potential to advance technologies such as solar panels, solid state lasers, medical imaging devices and 3D displays.

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Nursing, business students collaborate to research, improve health care

An innovative course at IU East is pairing nursing students with business school peers to gain skills in organizational leadership. These students are also working in collaboration with IU East's clinical education partner, Reid Health, to tackle challenges and improve processes related to health care topics identified by the hospital system. 

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IU task forces on student mental health share recommendations

The task forces' recommendations account for both ensuring students know how to access all of the resources on their campus -- including 1:1 counseling and the many peer-to-peer resources available -- as well as understanding what to do in a crisis.

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Voting underway for IU alumni trustee election

Three candidates are running for an open seat on the IU Board of Trustees. Voting is open to any IU degree holder through 10 a.m. June 30.

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