Indiana State University Newsroom

Trustees approve limited employee leave for community service

September 9, 2010

Indiana State University employees will be granted limited paid leave for community service under a policy approved Thursday by the university's Board of Trustees.

"In keeping with the university's nationally recognized status as an engaged campus, this policy recognizes the importance of community involvement and encourages employees to participate in volunteer activities by providing flexibility in work schedules and paid leave opportunities," said Jack Maynard, ISU's provost and vice president for academic affairs.

Paid leave will be limited to 15 hours per academic year for full-time employees who work 37.5 hours per week. The university's Center for Public Service and Community Engagement will maintain a list of pre-approved activities and will have final approval in determining eligible activities. Services provided through a membership organization where the primary recipients of the service are the organization's members and work on behalf of political groups will not be eligible. The policy will take effect Oct. 1.

Trustee President Ron Carpenter commented about the more than 9 percent increase in fall semester enrollment, including a 33 percent jump in new freshmen, during his report to the board.

"We're certainly headed in the right direction," Carpenter said. "Many things are going very well at ISU in spite of fiscal challenges."

Carpenter said trustees have identified four issues the university must address during the 2010-11 academic year in order to ensure continued success:

• Revise guidelines for faculty promotion and tenure in all academic units to enable faculty to support the university's strategic goals related to community engagement.
• Ensure that all students have significant experiential learning in their major.
• Assess programs in all colleges and departments systematically to ensure that students have the required skills and knowledge.
• Develop a plan to improve student success by removing barriers to graduation.

President Dan Bradley said during his report to trustees that the Indiana Chamber of Commerce recognition of Terre Haute as Community of the Year noted several projects connected to the university and the ISU Foundation.

"It is clear that Terre Haute is moving in the right direction and Indiana State is playing a role in areas such as the revitalization of downtown, economic development and the redevelopment of the riverfront," Bradley said. "We look forward to continuing our collaboration with various public and private entities to advance our community."

Trustees approved a two-year state operating budget request totaling $142 million per year for 2011-12 and 2012-13. Developed using a formula set by the Commission for Higher Education, the budget includes no inflationary increases. It does include increases in base funding for dual credits granted to high school students who take college level courses through the university and for increases in the number of degrees awarded to low-income students. The budget will go before the Higher Education Commission on Friday as the next step in a process leading to final action by the Indiana General Assembly next spring.

In other action, trustees:

• Delegated authority to the university president to set fees for optional programs at the Student Recreation Center.
• Established a fee schedule for a professional MBA program to be delivered off-site in Hendricks County.
• Agreed to seek campus input before taking action in October on a proposed $50 fine for violating the university's tobacco policy.
• Approved changing the name of the Rehabilitation Clinic in the College of Nursing, Health, and Human Services to the Physical Therapy and Sports Rehabilitation Clinic.
• Approved a name change for the Center for Public Service and Community Engagement to the Center for Community Engagement.
• Approved a name change for the Center for Business Support and Economic Innovation to the Business Engagement Center.

Photo: - Chris Pfaff (left), director of Indiana State University's Center for Business Support and Economic Innovation, and Nancy Rogers, associate vice president for community engagement and experiential learning, help spruce up downtown Terre Haute during the campus' Aug. 24 observance of Donaghy Day. A new policy allows ISU employees to take limited paid leave for community service work. (ISU/Kara Berchem)

Media contact and writer: Dave Taylor, media relations director, Office of Communications and Marketing, Indiana State University, 812-237-3743 or