Cook Pavilion adds much to Ivy Tech experience

From The Herald-Times
Posted: Thursday, November 19, 2015 6:29 am
Editorial staff

Ivy Tech Community College has taken another big step forward with the dedication of Cook Pavilion, 90,000 square feet of new space that transforms a nice-but-crowded academic building into something special.

Named for the family and companies of Gayle, Bill and Carl Cook, what had been called simply Phase 2 of Bloomington’s 13-year-old Ivy Tech campus will provide students and faculty an enriched college experience in a number of ways. Cook Group has a long relationship with Ivy Tech and has funded a number of initiatives with monetary and in-kind gifts.

There’s the new area called Shreve Hall, named for local businessman and Ivy Tech supporter Jefferson Shreve, that is a large open space and stage unlike anything Ivy Tech had before this expansion. The hall can seat 400 or be reconfigured into two classrooms and a 100-seat hall.

The Joan Olcott Library has much more room than the previous library and includes study space for students. The new bookstore looks like one you would find on many traditional college and university campuses, instead of more like an afterthought. A new IU Credit Union Student Success Center has a mathematics lab and a writing lab where students can work together or with faculty members and mentors.

The Cook influence is apparent in an Advanced Automation Robotics Technology Center, which will have a robotic line similar to a drug-fill line at Cook Pharmica. Students will be able to train as they would at an existing life-sciences industrial facility. Duke Energy made a $50,000 contribution to help equip the center.

The new paramedic science room will have more space than the current one for a mock ambulance, used to train future paramedics on a variety of systems used to save lives.

The Culinary Arts program won’t move in fully quite yet, but when it does, it will save the college a half-million dollars a year in rental fees for spaces now occupied by culinary and hospitality students. It will bring a strong Ivy Tech program into facilities better equipped for teaching and learning.

There’s also a new “makers space” for students to create and collaborate, and for community partners to work with Ivy Tech students and faculty on turning ideas into prototypes, designs and more finished products.

There’s more, including for the sake of transparency, a relocated Hoosier Times Newspaper Group student commons area. These additions and enhancements illustrate that the new Cook Pavilion, along with the 145,000 square feet in the Connie and Steve Ferguson Academic Building, are being used in ways that allow students to keep pace with 21st century employment opportunities while being prepared to continue on to a four-year degree if that’s what’s desired.

Ivy Tech Community College is moving forward in Bloomington, much to the benefit of this entire region.

Cook and Ferguson 2
Gayle Cook, left, and Connie Ferguson attend the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Cook Pavilion at Ivy Tech. Jeremy Hogan | Herald-Times

Ivy Tech expansion in Bloomington named Cook Pavilion

From The Herald-Times
Posted: Tuesday, November 17, 2015 5:30 pm
By Kat Carlton 812-331-4351 |

Ivy Tech’s $24 million expansion of its Connie and Steve Ferguson Academic Building in Bloomington has been named Cook Pavilion, officials announced at a dedication ceremony Tuesday evening.

“We’re here to celebrate the culmination of a successful capital campaign,” said Chancellor Jennie Vaughan.

Vaughan said the addition was named for the Cook Group, which has supported the community college with donations for more than 23 years. While $20 million for the project came from the state, the school has continued to fundraise the last $4 million through its capital campaign, “Here We Grow Again!” and has received more than $4.3 million to date. At the capital campaign kickoff event last September, CEO of Cook Group Carl Cook presented a $1 million check to campus leaders for the campaign. Of Ivy Tech Bloomington’s full-time employees, 87 percent participated in the campaign.

“This is a great beacon for the future of Indiana,” said Ivy Tech Community College President Tom Snyder, who is retiring next year.

In 2007, the project’s first phase accommodated 5,000 students, which the school exceeded. It currently serves up to 6,500, some in two rented spaces on Liberty Drive.

“We’re finally all going to be under one roof,” said Vaughan. “The students who have had to drive back and forth between here and Liberty Drive haven’t been connected with us.”

When the final phase of expansion is completed, the school will be able to accommodate about 9,000 students and give up one of its rented spaces.

The 90,000 square-foot expansion, which was approved to accommodate growing numbers of students, began in May 2014 and adds to the already 145,000 square feet of the main campus.

Highlights of the new space include:

• Shreve Hall, the building’s first lecture hall of its kind, which will seat up to 400 people and can be converted into multiple classroom spaces;

• A new Bloomingfoods store with double the space of the previous Ivy Tech Bloomington location;

• A paramedic science room with mock ambulance, allowing for training on both analog and digital systems;

• A culinary space that will move from the old rented space, saving $300,000 a year immediately in leasing costs and $200,000 more in 2017;

• The Technology, Engineering, Entrepreneurship, Arts, Math and Sciences “makers space” for students to work together and develop creativity;

• An advanced automation robotics technology center, with a line similar to the drug-fill line at Cook Pharmica, to train people in using robots;

• A new fine arts area, which accommodates visual arts, dance classes, a music room and kinesiology.

Other highlights of the new addition include a new common area, classrooms, faculty area, advising and testing spaces and more.

The old Bloomingfoods room will be converted to a faculty and staff lounge. That space will be named for Jim Heinzen, who worked with Ivy Tech for more than 25 years and was most recently dean of the schools of business, education and public and social services. Heinzen died earlier this month as a result of pancreatic cancer. The Ivy Tech trustees also tearfully approved a resolution Tuesday to name Heinzen an Ivy Tech Bloomington dean and professor emeritus. Vaughan also said the rest of the academic year would be dedicated to Heinzen, whom board chairwoman Connie Ferguson described as “always a professional.”

The library, bookstore and new tutoring center have been open to students since last month. Students will begin using the classrooms and other new spaces on the first day of the next semester, Jan. 11. Vaughan said in addition to the culinary space, which should be completed sometime in the spring, there are just “a few little things here and there” to finish up before January.

At the regional board of trustees meeting, just before the dedication, Vaughan presented little tokens of appreciation to board members: squeezable stress hammers, which read, “Together we made it a smashing success, Cook Pavilion.” Vaughan said she did it in the tradition of former Chancellor John Whikehart, whom she honored at the dedication with a plaque.

The dedication included Ivy Tech’s annual Showcase of Chefs and Wine event, which was meant to honor and thank donors to the campus for their contributions.

Ivy Tech will host a Cook Pavilion community open house Saturday, Nov. 21, with tours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. According to a news release from Ivy Tech, those interested should contact Tina Phelps at or 812-330-6001.


Cook and Ferguson
Gayle Cook, left, and Connie Ferguson attend the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Cook Pavilion at Ivy Tech. Jeremey Hogan | Herald-Times
Whikehart and Vaughan
Ivy Tech Chancellor emeritus John Whikehart, left, and current chancellor Jennie Vaughan speak during the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Cook Pavilion at Ivy Tech in Bloomington. Jeremy Hogan | Herald-Times
Cook Pavilion
Cook Pavilion at Ivy Tech. Jeremy Hogan | Herald-Times
Heather Cox
Heather Cox, who is studying baking in Ivy Tech’s culinary school prepares an hors d’oeuvre after the ribbon cutting ceremony at Ivy Tech. Jeremy Hogan | Herald-Times


Ivy Tech Bloomington dedicates expansion, names it Cook Pavilion

Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus named its newly-constructed, 90,000 square-foot addition of the Connie and Steve Ferguson Academic Building, the Cook Pavilion. Campus officials dedicated the new wing on Tuesday, November 17 at 5:30 p.m.

“Ivy Tech Bloomington is grateful to name our new space the Cook Pavilion after one of our most treasured and tireless supporters and partners, Cook Group,” said Chancellor Jennie Vaughan. “The Cooks have long understood the need for our region to have an accessible educational institution where people can create opportunities for themselves, and that’s what this expansion is all about, supporting student success.”

At Ivy Tech Bloomington’s “Here We Grow Again” capital campaign kick-off event last September, Carl Cook, CEO of Cook Group, presented a $1 million check to campus leaders for the campaign.

To-date, “Here We Grown Again” fundraising has surpassed its original goal of $4 million, and totals more than $4.3 million.

Cook Group has supported Ivy Tech for more than 23 years with monetary and in-kind gifts including equipment for academic instruction. Additionally, gifts have supported students and initiatives through scholarship awards, O’Bannon Institute for Community Service, Cook Center for Entrepreneurship, Cook Institute for Entrepreneurship, Career Expo, and Ivy Arts for Kids, among others.

The Cook Pavilion is a 90,000 square-foot addition to the existing 145,000 square-foot main campus building and includes a 400-seat lecture hall, a new bookstore, student success center for tutoring, classrooms and state-of-the-art science, paramedic and automation labs, culinary and baking kitchens, an outdoor dining patio, and an expanded library, commons and Bloomingfoods Ivy Tech.

On Saturday, November 21, Ivy Tech Bloomington will host a Cook Pavilion community open house with tours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. RSVP to Tina Phelps at or (812) 330-6001.

Program at Ivy Tech growing

From The Herald-Times
Posted: Sunday, November 15, 2015 12:00 am
By Joel Pierson H-T Theater columnist

In my ongoing series of profiles of local theatrical personalities, I spoke recently with Paul Daily, Ivy Tech’s artistic director for the John Waldron Arts Center.

I asked him what his job entails, and he told me, “My duties include listening and responding to community needs for the arts, directing the Ivy Tech student productions, building community partnerships, providing a vision for the Waldron and Center for Lifelong Learning, and the continual task of keeping all the activities in a multi-use building playing well together.”

Daily confirmed that acquiring the Waldron has been a great asset for the college. “It launched a new era in the arts for Ivy Tech. We began offering the associate of fine arts shortly after and developed articulation agreements with IU for dance and theater. Before that, we didn’t offer any theater or dance courses and had a limited offering of fine arts courses.”

They expanded their non-credit offerings to the community as well, including youth arts programming and summer camps.

“Everything we have with theater,” Paul says, “has happened because of the acquisition. In addition to our theater courses, Ivy Tech Student Productions has a three-show season. We’ve developed a strong partnership with Bloomington Playwrights Project, where we teach our theater courses. We also work with the BPP to run their theater camps under the Ivy Arts for Kids umbrella. And it has deepened our relationship with our most frequent renter, Cardinal Stage, as well as other community groups that rent the spaces in the Ivy Tech Waldron.”

The student productions are open to any Ivy Tech or Indiana University student. As Daily explains, “Part of college is discovering who you are, and this is such an outlet. The relationship we have with IU is very strong, and our students who discover theater here find they have connections at IU when they transfer because of our productions, where they’ve worked together already.”

Daily believes the arts always involve conversation between artists and community. Ivy Tech Community College can now present educational theater in a black-box setting, thus encouraging other theater companies in Bloomington into clearly defining who they are or opening up chances for them to explore. “The theater we’re doing,” he adds, “is thought-provoking and always asks the question, why does this story need to be told theatrically, rather than in another medium? Not to mention we’re just doing flat-out good work.”

This spring, they’ll be presenting Ibsen’s “An Enemy of the People” in an unusual way — the audience will move from room to room in the Waldron, using the art gallery, a classroom and the Rose Firebay.

As for the future, Daily says, “I’d love to see a few more courses added to our catalogue for theater, such as script analysis, and I’d like to get our season up to four shows. That dream may have to wait a while, though, because with our renters, we simply don’t have room to add any more productions!”

In closing, he says, “Ivy Tech Student Productions tell strong stories, told simply, that engage the audience’s collective imagination. I am forever seeking how to make an audience a part of the experience. When you have a beautiful, elaborate set before you, your imagination turns off — the designers have done all the work for you. But with a little fog, the right light, and an actor’s movement, you can imagine any number of worlds for yourself. That is far more exciting to me. Or when an actor turns to the audience member and makes a comment, suddenly the audience member is part of the story. I don’t expect the audience member to respond, and work to avoid making them feel anxious or uncomfortable in the moment, but being engaged directly, done correctly, can be thrilling.”

Contact Joel by sending an email to with “Pierson” in the subject line.

Paul Daily 2
Ryan Dorgan | Herald-Times file photoDirector Paul Daily watches his actors during a rehearsal at the Waldron Arts Center in 2012. “Waiting For Lefty,” a play by Clifford Odets and directed by Paul Daily, will run April 13-21 at the Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center.
Paul Daily
Ryan Dorgan | Herald-Times file photoPaul Daily offers advice to his cast in 2012 at the Waldron Arts Center. Daily, a former actor, took his directing position at Ivy Tech Community College after moving from New York via Kokomo. “Acting is all me-me-me,” said Daily. “ Directing is so different. It’s about finding the strengths in everyone else and helping those surface.”

Ivy Tech Bloomington earns four gold regional marketing and communications medals, wins six total

Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus has won four gold medals, six total, for its marketing efforts at the regional National Council of Marketing and Public Relations (NCMPR) professionals conference held November 4 through 6 in Ft. Wayne, Ind. NCMPR received 370 award entries from 39 community colleges in district 3, which includes community colleges in Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, and the Canadian province of Ontario.

The campus earned medals for marketing and public relations projects and initiatives ranging from communications successes to successful recruitment programs.

In the past seven years, the region has earned 52 awards from NCMPR. Of the 52 awards, Ivy Tech Bloomington earned 17 national and 35 regional medals. Statewide, Ivy Tech Community College campuses have earned more than 120 NCMPR medals.

Ivy Tech Bloomington’s 2015 regional conference awards are as follows:

  • Gold: Communications Success Story (New Chancellor naming, Jennie Vaughan)
  • Gold: Government or Community Relations Project (Expansion Groundbreaking)
  • Gold: Successful Recruitment Program (Youth Leadership Academy)
  • Gold: Wild Card (Academic Options Art Exhibit Promotion at Ivy Tech Waldron)
  • Silver: Fundraising Campaign (Here We Grow Again! Capital Campaign)
  • Bronze: Successful Recruitment Program (Radiation Therapy Degree Program)

NCMPR is an affiliate council of the American Association of Community Colleges. It is dedicated to fostering the professional development of college communications staff in public relations, public information, marketing, enrollment management, community relations and development. It is the only organization of its kind that exclusively represents marketing and public relations professionals at community and technical colleges. NCMPR has more than 1,550 members from more than 650 colleges across the United States, Canada and other countries.

Ivy Tech to host Robotics Competition tomorrow

The Bloomington Robotics Club and Ivy Tech Community College Bloomington are hosting the 10th Annual Bloomington Robotics Club Competition on Saturday, November 7 beginning at 8 a.m. at the Indiana Center for the Life Sciences. The competition will conclude with an awards ceremony at 3 p.m.

“Ivy Tech Community College and the Bloomington Robotics Club are continuously striving to get kids excited about science and technology,” said Kirk Barnes, dean of the school of technology at Ivy Tech’s Bloomington campus. “Along with our supporters, the Bloomington Robotics Club is instrumental in providing Indiana educators and students the necessary resources to integrate robotics into learning activities and to support robotics teams.”

More than 50 teams from across the state will participate in a tractor pull and a radio controlled robot event called TRIAD. The competition is open to all Indiana middle and high school students. Teams new to the competition applied for grants that gave them $500 robot kits. Six grants were awarded this year.

Admission costs for teams are 12 nonperishable canned food items per school or organization to be donated to a local charity.

The 2015 robot competition is sponsored by Cook Medical and Ivy Tech.

More information here:

About the Indiana Center for the Life Sciences
The Indiana Center for the Life Sciences (ICLS) is the direct result of a partnership between Monroe County Government, Ivy Tech Community College-Bloomington, and regional life science companies. This state-of-the-art facility houses education and training programs to prepare individuals for careers in the life sciences. Ivy Tech partners with area businesses to use the ICLS facility space for industry-specific training and certification. Ivy Tech holds its biotechnology and chemistry degree program courses at the ICLS.