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Last modified: Friday, October 1, 2010

IU devises blueprint for greater degree completion at regional campuses

Oct. 1, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie announced today (Oct. 1) the creation of a new initiative for IU's six regional campuses that focuses on improving degree completion rates and ensuring that Indiana has a steady and sufficient supply of academically talented, highly trained and actively engaged graduates.

The new Blueprint for Student Attainment calls for IU's regional campuses to develop strategies, actions and metrics to achieve a shared vision: to be accessible to a wide range of Indiana students and provide them with an excellent education that prepares them for successful, life-long careers and active engagement within their communities.

John Applegate

John Applegate

Print-Quality Photo

"Our regional campuses comprise one third of Indiana University," said IU Vice President for University Regional Affairs, Planning and Policy John Applegate. "They provide first-rate educational opportunities to a wide range of students, 80 percent of whom put their skills and knowledge to work in their home communities after graduation.

"The campuses are important community partners who support state and regional economic development," he added. "The goals of the Blueprint for Student Attainment are to enhance the existing efforts of each campus, take advantage of shared strengths and find synergies and efficiencies in regional campus operations."

Earlier this year, Applegate was appointed by McRobbie to lead an initiative to develop and implement a distinct collective mission for IU's regional campuses highlighting their critical role within the university and the state's higher education system.

Since the time of that announcement he and regional campus chancellors have developed the Blueprint for Student Attainment document, which sets forth the shared goals of the IU regional campuses and addresses several areas critical to achieving that vision. Those areas include: excellent, distinctive education; student success; access and innovation in instruction; pathways and transition; affordability and efficiency; and meeting regional and state needs.

Under the blueprint, six joint faculty-administration "priority action teams" will develop strategies; identify specific actions; and adopt appropriate metrics and targets related to each of the priority areas, Applegate said. In all, 72 faculty and staff members are participating in the committee process, representing IU's six regional campuses: IU East, IU Kokomo, IU Northwest, IU South Bend, IU Southeast and Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne.

IU Director of Legislative and Policy Analysis Judy Palmer will serve as project director, and interim reports from the teams are due in early December with final reports by early March.

The six individual team recommendations will then be consolidated into a single plan that advances the shared vision and goals of the regional campuses. A leadership committee, including Applegate and the regional campus chancellors, will submit the final document to McRobbie by next spring.

McRobbie expressed his support for the Blueprint process in his State of the University speech, which he delivered on Tuesday (Sept. 28).

"I applaud this initiative," he said, "and I urge the relevant committee to make recommendations and the campuses to take action on [college] completion as quickly as possible, before the Blueprint process is complete."

The full text of the Blueprint for Student Attainment document, along with the list of committee members by Priority Action Teams and by campus, are available at: