The Board of Trustees learned about declining enrollment numbers across campuses in a presentation during Oct. 5 and 6 meetings at IU-Purdue University Indianapolis.
In addition, they approved new construction projects on campus, such as the Metz Carillon relocation and the IU Golf Course renovation, added new degrees for IU-Bloomington and caught up on the Precision Health Initiative.
“Now that students are back on campus, it was a little more of a busy meeting,” student trustee Zach Arnold said.
Enrollment and Diversity Presentations
John Applegate, executive vice president for University academic affairs, said there are 96,100 degree-seeking students across IU’s seven campuses, and more than 43,000 at IU-Bloomington alone. The University is seeing an upward trend in full-time students taking 15 or more credit hours.
Although credit hours are going up, enrollment is flatlining or declining at many campuses due to a demographic shift. This is because fewer people are having children due to expenses, Applegate said.
James Wimbush, vice president for diversity, equity and multicultural affairs, gave a report on diversity at IU. He said among the seven campuses, IU has 20,053 minority students and 8,232 attend IU-Bloomington.
IU-Bloomington was also honored in the top 25 LGBTQ-friendly colleges and universities by the nonprofit organization Campus Pride. IU was also one of 15 universities to be named a diversity champion by Insight into Diversity Magazine.
“I take tremendous pride in how the IU community comes together to maintain an environment that embraces the different cultures of the students, faculty and staff on each of our campuses,” Wimbush said in an Oct. 6 press release.
After renovations, the Metz Carillon will move to a plaza in the Arboretum in fall 2019, and the 162-foot-tall tower will have a light fixture at the top to create a concert-like area.
The Metz Carillon will have four bells added for a total of 65 bells, changing its category to grand carillon. There are fewer than 30 grand carillons in the world, student trustee Zach Arnold said.
“It’s going to give more of a positive ambiance to that part of campus,” Arnold said.
The IU Golf Course will add a new clubhouse for events as well as a new driving range. It will also include 70 acres of new trees and plants to replace those that are diseased or dead.
The Board of Trustees also approved four new degrees for IU-Bloomington.
IU is adding two master of science degrees in the School of Public Health, one in athletic training and the other in environment and occupational health.
There are also two bachelor’s degrees, a bachelor of arts in international law and institutions through the School of Global and International Studies and a College of Arts and Sciences bachelor of science in molecular life sciences.
Precision Health Initiative
The Board of Trustees also heard an update from the IU-Purdue University Indianapolis Precision Health Initiative, which aims to cure at least one cancer and to transform Indiana’s research and health care by studying genes, lifestyle and environment.
Jay Hess, dean of the IU School of Medicine, said the initiative is currently focused on pediatric cancer, triple negative breast cancer and multiple myeloma.
He said new cell therapy facilities and equipment are in the works for this initiative. Scientists from IU and the Indianapolis-based Regenstrief Institute are researching individual treatment plans based on a person’s genes.