Indiana State University Newsroom

University showing ‘great progress,' president says in campus address

September 16, 2010

In the wake of a record increase in new students, Indiana State University is expanding its efforts to ensure students stay in college and complete a four-year degree.

Indiana State saw a 33 percent jump in the number of incoming freshmen as overall enrollment increased 9 percent this fall to nearly 11,500.

"We're up because we're doing a good job and we've got the word out that ISU is a great place to go to school," President Dan Bradley said Wednesday in his annual fall address to campus.

The university needs to sustain that growth in enrollment and work harder to make sure students stay at ISU and complete a four-year degree, Bradley said.

Indiana State is expanding existing student success programs and adding new ones.

MAP-Works, a nationwide tool that assesses student preparedness, has grown to include 1,800 ISU students, up from about 850 last year. MAP-Works students have a retention rate that is 4 percent higher than students who do not participate in the program, Bradley said.

Another program, called "Launch" was piloted last year, providing scholarships to 25 students who met academic achievement goals and was "tremendously successful," Bradley said. Launch has been expanded to serve 100 students this year.

A new Sycamore Mentors program has 40 ISU faculty and staff members volunteering to mentor two 21st Century Scholars each this year and all university employees are being encouraged to get to know students they would not otherwise come in contact with during the year.

"We know that when students get engaged and get to know people on campus they're going to be more successful," Bradley said.

Citing data from an area food bank, Bradley noted that only 1 percent of food bank clients have a college degree while 73 percent have only high school degree or less.

"We are helping people change their futures. If they aren't successful here, their chances of being successful once they leave here are greatly diminished," he said.

Despite continued economic uncertainty, Bradley said Indiana State is experiencing success in areas aside from enrollment, including:

• Fiscal 2010 was the second largest fundraising year in university history.
• 13 new jobs were created through the university's Center for Business Support and Economic Innovation.
• ISU partnerships and initiatives contributed to Terre Haute's Community of the Year Award from the Indiana Chamber of Commerce.
• The number of donors to the ISU Foundation reached 9,800.
• The foundation's March On! fund-raising campaign is at 70 percent of its $85 million goal and is on track to achieve that goal by December 2011.
• $13 million received from grants and contracts for fiscal 2010 reflects an increase of $5 million from 2009.
• 135 grant proposals were funded, an increase of 35 percent.
• New programs were added, especially in health care fields, and additional new programs are in the works in social work, pharmacy and civil engineering.

Bradley said Indiana State is "showing great progress" in achieving its goals after just one year of its five-year strategic plan, but that the university must do more to ensure all students have a meaningful experiential learning experience in their classes. Currently, 76 percent of students get hands-on learning.

The ISU campus continues to become more diverse, with African-Americans comprising nearly 15 percent of the student body this fall, Bradley said. He announced funding for eight "opportunity hires" to help increase faculty diversity.

Bradley announced that $5 million will be set aside during the next five years to improve and strengthen programs of distinction and programs of promise. The university is also working on a rural studies and development initiative, he said.

A major initiative continues to upgrade student housing with an additional 250 beds expected to be available in fall 2011 following the renovation of Pickerl Hall. Erickson Hall, currently a classroom and office building, is in line for renovation to serve as campus housing once the Pickerl project is completed.

"We are making great progress. That progress is being recognized by people all over the state," Bradley said in thanking faculty and staff. He also announced plans for pay raises averaging 3 percent, effective Nov. 1, with additional funds set aside for equity adjustments.

Video: Watch President Bradley's fall address to the campus community at

Photo: - Indiana State University President Dan Bradley makes a point during his 2010 fall address to campus Sept. 15 at Tilson Auditorium. (ISU/Kara Berchem)

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