Tag Archive | "President Smith"

Smith: ‘If we build it, they will come’

An update on President Smith’s university goals.

In the upcoming years, the Health Sciences Initiative is a key goal for Indiana Wesleyan University’s President Henry Smith and his cabinet. The initiative has two parts: a new science and nursing building, due to be completed by fall 2014, and a college of osteopathic medicine.
Smith emphasized that this doesn’t mean other programs will be ignored.

The science and nursing building

Smith said that he and his leadership team chose to build on the already strong foundations of the School of Nursing and pre-med programs at IWU.

In its most recent accreditation review, the School of Nursing received the “maximum affirmation” a school is given, Smith said, and the pre-med program has a 100 percent placement rate in medical schools one year out from IWU graduation.

According to Smith, this new building will allow for these programs to grow by:

  • Moving from a primarily undergraduate focus to a graduate focus with master’s and doctoral programs like occupational therapy and physical therapy. The faculty senate has already approved a doctorate of nursing practice.
  • Making room for faculty-student collaborative research.
  • Making room for the growing programs.

Nursing major Jordan Wible (jr) said he knows the expansion of Burns Hall will benefit those in his major – mainly because of the extra space in the nursing lab. He said it was the hall’s  nursing lab that attracted Wible to IWU in the first place.

Wible said as a prospective student he liked the nursing lab “because it looks very much like a hospital setting. … That’s what makes it so strong: you have so much interaction … where you can practice and make mistakes without consequences.”

“That’s a big reason why I chose here,” Wible continued. “Having a bigger facility will just help with bringing people in.”

The college of osteopathic medicine

Again, to build on the school’s strengths in its nursing and pre-med programs, the school is looking to build a college of osteopathic medicine. IWU was in the running to build a med school in Indiana, but Marian University in Indianapolis was chosen instead.

As a result of this decision, the Kansas Association of Osteopathic Medicine contacted IWU, asking Smith and his team to consider building the med school in Kansas.

“There’s a great need in the Great Plains,” Smith said. Plus, Kansas is only 500 miles away.

The IWU college of osteopathic medicine, if created, will be the first of its kind. There are other medical schools with religious affiliations, but none with an evangelical, Protestant focus, said Dr. David Wright, IWU’s provost and chief academic officer.

“This would be one-of-a-kind,” Wright said. When talking about the programs and curriculum for this med school, Wright said officials  have no models to follow.

“We have the opportunity here to create a college that would turn out a set of doctors whose preparation has been with the model of Christ in mind and whose challenge from day one is not just to go out and get a great practice that pays them a lot of money, but to go to those places where the poor and the needy don’t have access to medical care,” Wright said.

In April, the board of trustees will make a final decision whether or not IWU will create a med school in Kansas.

Art, communication, seminary, etc.

Though for the time being the university is focused on its health sciences programs, Smith said this is only because it’s necessary to focus on one thing at a time; the other IWU programs are not being ignored.

“It’s just that from time-to-time you have to provide a certain focus,” Smith said. Right now that focus is mostly with the health sciences, but other areas will soon be addressed, such as:

  • The seminary’s future site is nearly clear for a groundbreaking this spring. The seminary already has 200-300 students.
  • A new art building is next, after the science building is complete.
  • The Division of Communication is due for updated equipment, especially as the world of television is moving toward high-definition.
    Smith said these goals are not just his own, but are part of a vision he shares with the rest of his leadership team and, he hopes, with God.

“First and foremost we have to make sure this is what God wants,” Smith said. “I say that not just to be spiritual, just knowing that God is the only one who truly sees the future.”

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Power Structures at IWU

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Hate crime reported on campus

President Henry Smith announced during chapel Wednesday, Dec. 7 that an incident of vandalism, which took place on the Marion campus of Indiana Wesleyan University over the weekend, is being treated as a federal hate crime by university officials.

Smith said a student’s automobile had been spray-painted with the F-word and the N-word, though the vehicle’s owner was not a person of color, according to Smith. Officials considered displaying a photograph of the damage during chapel services but decided not to do so, since the perpetrator of this act apparently intended it to be seen.

Mario Rangel, Campus Police coordinator, said an act of vandalism involving an automobile in lot #26, south of the University Court apartments, was reported Sunday, Dec. 4. The student had not driven his or her vehicle Friday or Saturday, so the precise time of the incident is unknown, according to Rangel.

“This is the kind of thing that should not happen, that we will not support,” said Smith during the 10 a.m. chapel service Dec. 7, adding that multiculturalism should eventually become part of IWU’s “DNA.”

Smith and Wayne Schmidt, vice president for Wesley Seminary at IWU, introduced a time of corporate prayer in the form of responsive readings led by IWU students, faculty and administrators, including Don Lawrence, director of intercultural student services; Rusty Hawkins, professor of a class this semester titled, “Religion, Race, and Resistance: The White Church’s Response to the Black Freedom Struggle, 1950-1975”; and Diane McDaniel, IWU’s associate vice president of human resources.

“I think this is just another opportunity for us to shine,” McDaniels said between the two chapel services. She said the past actions and intentional stances taken by the IWU community have positioned the university to respond in a way that promotes positive change.

The 2011/2012 IWU student handbook says: “Because of our scriptural belief in the worth and dignity of persons, each member of the community is expected to be sensitive to special needs existing in our society and on our campus. Therefore, discrimination against others on the basis of race, national or ethnic origin, age, sex, socioeconomic status, or handicap is a violation of our Biblical principles.”

Officials do not yet know whether IWU students were involved in carrying out the vandalism.

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