Spend a ‘day in the life’ of a college student

BLOOMINGTON – Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus is now offering prospective students the opportunity to spend a “day in the life” of a college student to explore areas of interest. Prospective students can sign up to shadow current students for a day and attend a college class to observe hands-on activities and simulations.

Lillian Lyle, who observed students in the nursing program, says that she adored her experience and that she learned about some of the technical aspects to becoming a nurse, such as the different angles in which injections are needed.

“Looking back, the experience gave me a more realistic view,” she said. “It gave me more of what to expect from my first nursing courses, and which classes I would need before I would be accepted into the program.”

Shadowing opportunities are currently offered in biology, biotechnology, criminal justice, design technology, early childhood education, education, fine arts, hospitality administration (culinary arts and baking & pastry arts), kinesiology and exercise science, legal studies, medical assisting, nursing, optometric technology, paralegal studies, paramedic science, and respiratory therapy. Ivy Tech continues to add more academic program opportunities.

Sign up to spend a “day in the life” of a college student by visiting ivytech.edu/bloomington/dayinthelife or by contacting Ivy Tech Bloomington at bl-info@ivytech.edu or (812) 330-6013.


Ivy Tech, BPP, and IU partner to bring the BPP Bloody Mary Bi-Monthly Reading Series to Bloomington on Select Sundays

A collaborative dramatic reading event featuring new plays by local writers

The Bloomington Playwrights Project, the Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center, and the Indiana University Department of Theater, Drama, and Contemporary Dance, along with a group of local professional playwrights, have combined forces to bring you the best new plays Bloomington has to offer.

This Sunday reading series will feature the work of local professional playwrights, read out loud in the cozy lobby of the Bloomington Playwrights Project. We will offer a virgin Bloody Mary Bar with all the fun toppings, as well as complimentary bagels and cream cheese. After the reading there will be space for a talkback and discussion with the writer.

“This collaboration was born out of the desire to showcase Bloomington’s diverse local talent,” said program liaison, and playwright Karina Cochran. “Many of our local writers have had work produced in New York or L.A, but lack opportunities here in their own hometown. Hopefully this will help change that.”

This bi-monthly series will begin Feb. 24 at 1:30 p.m. at the Bloomington Playwrights Project. The first featured play will be ‘The Space Between Us’ by Peter Gil-Sheridan, who is currently the head of the MFA Playwriting program at Indiana University. His work has been produced and developed at The Guthrie Theatre, The Sundance Institute, The Pool, Soho Rep, the Cherry Lane Theatre, and the New York Theatre Workshop.

‘The Space Between Us,’ is a comedy about Americans of very different experiences inhabiting one country together. It was written at the Silverton Theatre Mine in Silverton, Colo.

The reading will be directed by Jonathan Michaelsen and will feature actors Aaron Ricciardi and Jenny McKnight, among others.

The following reading will take place on Sunday, April 21 at 1:30 p.m, with a reading of the play, ‘Dancing to Birth’ by Karina Cochran, which was inspired by the author’s pregnancy dance class.

Bloomington Playwrights Project
107 W. 9th Street
Bloomington, IN 47404

Associate professor of English, Christine Brandel, wins campus instructional award

BLOOMINGTON – Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus has named Christine Brandel, associate professor of English, the 2018 recipient of Ivy Tech’s President’s Award for Excellence in Instruction. She was selected among 46 other full-time faculty nominees.

Brandel’s student nominations highlighted her commitment to student learning and community involvement.

In her English composition courses, Brandel’s teaching focus is critical thinking. “This skill will be important in their college classes as well as in their daily lives,” she said of her students. “I encourage them to question and analyze what they read, so they can build well-supported, logical arguments. We usually have a theme of higher education and my hope is that it encourages students to become more invested in their own educational experiences.”

Brandel also serves community. She was awarded Ivy Tech’s 2018 O’Bannon Institute for Community Service Excellence in Volunteerism award for her work with IU Health Bloomington Hospice as a patient and bereavement support volunteer.

In addition to her classroom duties and community service, Brandel is a second-year adviser of Root and Branch campus literary magazine, in which two of her students were recently nationally-recognized for their contributions to the publication. She also serves on the campus diversity committee, the English department affective unit committee, and as chair of English adjunct faculty support. She is also adviser to the student Campus Pride group.

Brandel is the author of “A Wife is a Hope Chest,” published by Brain Mill Press in Oct. 2017. The title poem from that collection was nominated for a 2017 Pushcart Prize. She has participated in community writing events and was recently featured on “The Poets Weave” on WFIU local public radio.

“In all of my classes, it’s important for me to treat students as individuals,” said Brandel. “My students come into class with different motivations, skills, and levels of confidence, and I do my best to inspire and challenge all of them to become stronger writers.”

Some of Brandel’s English students have gone on to universities to work on their bachelor’s degrees and then continued on to graduate studies.

The President’s Award is given annually to one full-time faculty member from each Ivy Tech campus statewide. As recipient of this award, Brandel is also the nominee for the statewide Ivy Tech Founder’s Award for Excellence in Instruction, to be presented by the College in June. The Founder’s Award is presented to one full-time faculty member statewide who best typifies the teaching and learning mission of the College.

Open house event touts new technology at StoneGate

BEDFORD – Ivy Tech Community College hosted a community open house at the new StoneGate Arts & Education Center located downtown Bedford on Thursday, Jan. 10 with nearly 35 visitors in attendance. While the community enjoyed refreshments, they learned that StoneGate offers new technologies to students, such as live online synchronous video capabilities. Live online classes enable students to take classes in Bedford that are held at Ivy Tech Bloomington’s main campus.

“Synchronous video gives students more class options in their home community of Lawrence County,” said Jessica Strunk, vice chancellor of enrollment services. “It allows them to virtually attend class via technology.”

Ivy Tech offers classes in Bedford that prepare students for jobs, and that lead to associate degrees and certificates in business, healthcare, industrial technology, and HVAC. Ivy Tech also offers general education classes in Bedford that transfer to public colleges and universities in Indiana.

There is still time to sign up for classes that start in March. Information and classes offered at Ivy Tech in Bedford can be found online at ivytech.edu/bedford.

Welcome Week included breakfast for students

BLOOMINGTON – Ivy Tech Community College welcomed students back for Spring Semester 2019 with flipped pancakes and coffee from Chris Cakes. Students were able to “catch” a free breakfast along with helpful information from employee volunteers who assisted students in becoming acquainted with the new semester. The campus hosted a number of events and services during the first week including a mental health support station where students made self-care kits, a community resource fair, a student involvement fair, family movie night, and give-and-take supply bins.

Taste of Italy meets $40,000 fundraising goal

BLOOMINGTON – Thanks to generous donations from supporters, Ivy Tech Community College was able to raise enough funds to send a group of 10 culinary students to Italy this May for a study-abroad experience. Fundraising for the $40,000 initiative began last fall and has included contributions from private individuals, employees, Circle of Ivy, and – most recently – through Giving Tuesday, the annual global day of giving, held Tuesday, Nov. 27, 2018.

The trip will take students to central Italy where they’ll immerse themselves in the culture and practices surrounding food in this varied and historic region. The 10-day tour will include visits to the Cuneo Region, Bra, Turin, Florence, Parma, San Miniato, Bologna and Milan.

Former carpenter starts career as massage therapist

BLOOMINGTON – Ivy Tech alumnus Brett Volpp says his new career as a massage therapist is a welcomed change from his former career in carpentry. Volpp graduated with a certificate in therapeutic massage in December, 2018 and will work as an independent contractor at the Blue Lotus Massage & Spa in Ellettsville, Ind. with former instructor and spa owner, Kristen Lewis.

“Carpentry was really hard on me physically,” said Volpp. “The repetitive motions took a toll on me over the years and I’ve had therapeutic body work done to help heal some of that.”

Volpp said that he enrolled at Ivy Tech to find a career that was less physical. He also required a more flexible work schedule that would allow him time to work on his farm and to create art. Volpp earned a fine arts degree in painting at Indiana University and frequently exhibits work locally and regionally.

“As a farmer and an artist I wanted a flexible, part-time schedule. I also wanted to do something that I could do long-term and past retirement age,” said Volpp. “I realize that therapeutic massage would be something that would allow me to help other people, because I had been helped in that way. I really enjoy connecting with people, so I find that it helps me too.”

Ivy Tech’s therapeutic massage program gives students opportunities to earn more than the 500 training hours required for state certification through the Massage & Bodywork Licensing Examination (MBLEx). Students and faculty operate The Oasis Massage Therapy Center at Ivy Tech, and appointments are available year-round.

“Participating in The Oasis was a class requirement,” said Volpp. “We also did special events throughout the years including chair massages and massages in the community. We did one massage session at a local nursing home.”

Volpp said the atmosphere at Ivy Tech was supportive and felt like a smaller community than Indiana University.

“Everyone at Ivy Tech is trying to help you,” said Volpp. “There’s a lot of one-on-one support, including technology support and librarians. If I have questions, I prefer to speak to somebody in person and I was able to do that here.”

Volpp said that many of his classmates had also found local massage therapy employment after graduation.

“There are a lot of openings still in massage in Bloomington,” said Volpp. “It’s a good career to get into. I have three appointments next week already and I will soon start working with clients from The Center for Wholism. I feel like I’m flooded with opportunity.”

More information about Ivy Tech’s therapeutic massage center can be found online at ivytech.edu/therapeutic-massage. The certificate can be completed in 26 credit hours, or two full-time semesters. Students who complete the Therapeutic Massage certificate will be eligible to continue their education in the Healthcare Specialist Associate of Applied Science degree program, for increased employment opportunities.

Ivy Tech Bloomington offers many associate degrees and short-term certificates in the healthcare field. Other associate degrees offered include Healthcare Specialist, Kinesiology and Exercise Science, Medical Assisting, Nursing and Practical Nursing, Optometric Technology, Paramedic Science, Respiratory Therapy, and Radiation Therapy. For a full list of degrees offered in Bloomington, visit ivytech.edu/bloomington/academics.