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Saturday, June 22
The Indiana Daily Student


Provost delivers State of the Campus address


IU may have recruited its most diverse class in history, but the need to push for inclusivity is greater than ever, Provost Lauren Robel said in her 2016 State of the Campus Address.

In her speech Tuesday afternoon in Franklin Hall, Robel focused on expanding programs, research initiatives and campus-wide progress in the Bicentennial Strategic Plan, which furthers the development of IU as it enters its third century.

“We have a strong tradition of bringing the world to Bloomington,” Robel said.

Robel detailed the positive results of an assessment released by the Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Multicultural 

More than $2.8 million has gone toward the hiring of diverse faculty since 2013. The IU report has also documented nearly 2,000 distinct diversity efforts.

“The methodology was great — it used web scraping tools, archived events using keywords and even implemented the social sciences,” Robel said. “We pay constant attention to putting forth persistent effort in the leadership to combat issues and experience more progress.”

Robel, the Bloomington Faculty Council and IU faculty and administration celebrated the findings of the DEMA report and also took the results as benchmarks from which to grow in the future.

A push for increased efforts to help smooth the transition of international students is underway.

“Having a new committee focused on international affairs, for example, and the concerns of students, is one instance of what our faculty is doing to improve the state of our campus in the near future,” said Cassidy Sugimoto, Bloomington Faculty Council executive. Sugimoto provided the introductory remarks for Robel’s address.

Throughout her address, Robel gave an overview of IU’s achievements in recent months, both academically and administratively. She described the initiations of three new schools within the College of Arts and Sciences: the School of Global and International Studies, the Media School and the School of Art and Design.

Robel also celebrated the accreditation of programs in the School of Public Health, the upcoming implementation of the Intelligent Systems Engineering program in the School of Informatics and Computing, and new graduate degrees being offered in the School of Social Work and the School of Nursing.

Another notable University achievement Robel mentioned is the Media Digitization and Preservation Initiative, which recently finished preserving 50,000 media items. Robel said these contributions will help tell IU’s story more comprehensively in the 

“This initiative is huge, and it took enormous 
imagination to conceive it and educate it.” Robel said. “If we don’t do it, we lose our history.”

Robel concluded her address with a call to action. She told audience members to connect their visions of a productive, diverse and inclusive society to the University’s mission of “fulfilling the promise.”

“You have to push on every front for progress,” Robel said. “You can never not let these pressing issues be at the top of your mind — that’s the only way.”

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