Students provide eyeglasses to 41 residents in need through ‘Gift of Sight’ program

bl_newsletter_june20185BLOOMINGTON – Optometric Technology students concluded their Gift of Sight program in June. Students, under the supervision of a certified optician, served 41 underserved members of the community with prescription eyeglasses. Local optometrists also provided patients with free eye exams.

Ivy Tech identified these individuals through an application process to determine financial need.

“Students spent several hours outside class time and after the semester ended, completing measurements, cutting, dispensing, and adjusting frames,” said Leanne Short, Ivy Tech optometric program chair. “This truly shows their dedication to our week of sight patients. We couldn’t have asked for a better pairing of college and community!”

Circle of Ivy, an Ivy Tech Community College women’s giving circle, provided the first $2,970 required to fund the Gift of Sight program. An additional $2,055 was raised through a crowd funding effort in November. Funds directly supported the consumable expenses incurred in the process of prescription eyeglass creation, including lenses, frames, end pieces, nose pads, temples, cable temples, hinges and spring hinges.

In the 2017-18 academic year, Ivy Tech Bloomington Circle of Ivy members provided $16,623 total in funding to support seven projects. Information about Circle of Ivy can be found online at



Ivy Tech to hold enrollment events on main campus, area cities

BLOOMINGTON – Ivy Tech Community College is hosting Express Enrollment Days on Thursday, June 21 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Bloomington, Bedford, French Lick, and Martinsville locations, and on Saturday, June 23 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Bloomington only. Staff will be available to help students apply, register, meet with an academic advisor, and get assistance with financial aid applications.

On Saturday, June 23, Ivy Tech’s Bloomington campus will host family-friendly activities, music, games, and food trucks.

The first 100 attendees of the Bedford Express Enrollment Day will receive free Celebrations Ice Cream, beginning at 11 a.m. Ivy Tech in Bedford ( is located at the StoneGate Arts and Education Center, 405 I St.

Ivy Tech’s French Lick location ( is the Orange County Learning Center at Springs Valley, 479 Larry Bird Blvd.

Ivy Tech’s Martinsville location is The Main Connection, 460 Main St.

Ivy Tech Bloomington’s campus is located on the west side at 200 Daniels Way and the hours are Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call (812) 330-6013 or email

Students who plan to attend the Bloomington event are encouraged to RSVP at To attend Bedford, French Lick, and Martinsville events, RSVP to or 812-330-6012.

Culinary students studied in France

Trip possible through funding from the Indiana University Center for International Business Education (CIBER)


BLOOMINGTON – During May, Jeffery Taber, assistant professor and program chair for Hospitality at Ivy Tech Bloomington, and two of his students, Angel Bartholomy and Emily Bougher, joined three faculty members and 23 hospitality students from Ivy Tech Indianapolis and Fort Wayne campuses on a trip to France. From May 11 to May 24, they visited Paris, Versailles, Tours, Samour, and Lyon.

“Lyon is the culinary capital of France,” said Taber. “During the trip, students learned about true French Cuisine. They had the opportunity to experience a range of culinary adventures, from a delicious casual family-style dinner at a duck farm to a unique fine-dining experience in a Michelin Star-rated restaurant.”

Students toured restaurants, gardens, chateaux, farms, and caves, learning about wine production, and classical French pastry production. They also prepared their own dinners at the Institut Paul Bocuse, an internationally-renowned hospitality and culinary arts school.

“Student enrichment and the opportunity to share knowledge from their trip is a valuable outcome that we hope to impart on others,” said Taber.

The trip was funded by the Indiana University Center for International Business Education (CIBER). IU CIBER is a national resource center, funded by a Title VI grant from the U.S. Department of Education. IU CIBER provides opportunities for IU students and faculty, and also for community colleges and minority-serving institutions and business professionals throughout the U.S.

Boston Scientific collaborates with Ivy Tech to support degree completion

BLOOMINGTON – Boston Scientific and Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus have collaborated on the Achieve Your Degree™ program to encourage college degree completion among Boston Scientific employees.

Achieve Your Degree™ is a collaborative program between Ivy Tech and employers to offer working adults the opportunity to earn a community college education.

“In contrast with a tuition reimbursement program, Achieve Your Degree™ is a tuition deferral program that enables working adults to earn associate degrees or certifications with no upfront cost to them,” said Jennie Vaughan, chancellor of Ivy Tech Bloomington. “We know that the cost associated with earning a degree is a barrier for some students, so we’re pleased to work with Boston Scientific to offer Achieve Your Degree™, for the benefit of employers and our graduates.”

“We strive to provide a range of comprehensive benefits that can be tailored to meet our employees’ diverse needs at different stages of life, and this collaboration with Ivy Tech strengthens the educational offerings for our employees,” said Kenneth McKee, human resources director at Boston Scientific. “The Achieve Your Degree™ program helps us to support our employees’ continued education and professional development in ways that might otherwise be inaccessible.”

The program will give Boston Scientific employees the option to earn associate degrees in 10 pre-selected degree programs in order to advance their careers at the company. Degree program options include accounting, advanced automation/robotics technology, biotechnology, business administration, design technology, industrial technology, electrical engineering technology, engineering technology, manufacturing production and operations, and supply chain management/logistics.

Other local employers have also partnered with Ivy Tech Bloomington to offer Achieve Your Degree™ to their employees, including Bell Trace Health and Living, Circle Prosco, Inc., Cook Group, German American Bank, IU Credit Union, Old National Bank, Paoli Health & Living Community, Pro League Cuts, Singota Solutions, Stonecroft Health Campus, and Hearthstone Health Campus.

Employers can learn more about Achieve Your Degree™ by arranging a time for Ivy Tech to visit. Contact Jessica Duncan at or (812) 330-6349.

For more information, log on

Ivy Tech Bloomington now offering Medical Assisting program

 BLOOMINGTON – Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus is now offering a technical certificate and associate of applied science degree in medical assisting. The program will begin in fall 2018 and is offered to meet workforce demands in the area.

Medical assisting graduates can find employment as medical assistants in doctor’s offices and hospitals. Job duties include clerical work, patient check-in, vital sign measurement, medication administration, discharging patients, assisting with patient exams, and other duties. Medical assisting students will also learn phlebotomy procedures and electrocardiogram (EKG) training.

For medical assistants, the U.S. Department of Labor reports a much faster than average growth rate of 29 percent from 2016 to 2026. According to an Economic Modeling Specialist International (EMSI) June 2017 report, the median hourly earnings for medical assistants in Indiana is $14.05.

The number of students who can be enrolled in the medical assisting program each semester is limited to 10. Students must apply to become accepted into the program.

More information and the medical assisting program application can be found online at under the Bloomington dropdown. An Ivy Tech application is also required. Apply online at

Ivy Tech Bloomington’s campus is located on the west side at 200 Daniels Way and is open Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Questions can be directed to (812) 330-6013 or


Robot workshop for K-12 educators to be hosted by Ivy Tech

 BLOOMINGTON – Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus will host a two-day workshop on June 11-12 to train K-12 educators on how to build and program Lego Mindstorms® EV3 robots, develop classroom activities, and borrow Lego Mindstorms® equipment and software for classroom usage.

The workshop is open to all K-12 educators including homeschools. The cost is $137.85 and educators will earn one course credit upon completion. The workshop will be held at the Ivy Tech Bloomington campus on June 11-12 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Teachers will participate in six hands-on activities concentrating on programming robots and will get assistance to develop an age-appropriate lesson for their classroom.

Upon completion of the workshop, teachers will have the opportunity to borrow 20 Lego Mindstorms® EV3 educational kits and 20 laptop computers with the EV3 programming software to use in their classrooms for a three-week period during the academic year. Current Ivy Tech students in engineering technology, information technology, and advanced manufacturing will assist teachers in their classrooms.

Educators must register by Friday, May 25. To register, contact Sydney Courtad at or 812-330-6239.

Ivy Tech Bloomington is located on the west side at 200 Daniels Way and is open Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Robotics is ‘fun, like a puzzle’

Rebecca Stoops

BLOOMINGTON – Rebecca Stoops is pursuing her advanced automation and robotics technology associate degree with the help of Ivy Tech’s Achieve Your Degree™ tuition deferral program. Stoops’ employer, Catalent, is partnered with Ivy Tech to offer the Achieve Your Degree program to employees. Achieve Your Degree is a tuition deferral program that allows working adults to earn a college certificate or associate degree with no upfront cost to the student. The program helps employees earn credentials to advance within their companies.

“I earned a BA in biology from Indiana University and after I graduated, I got a job at Catalent as manufacturing associate team lead,” said Stoops. “Biology gave me few technical skills so I was missing that, but I learned a lot of technical skills from my job and wanted more. So that’s where Ivy Tech came in.”

Stoops enrolled at Ivy Tech in 2016 when the Achieve Your Degree program became available. She was looking for a career and educational program that was hands-on, fun, challenging and technical, and discovered the automation and robotics program to be a perfect fit.

“I wanted to build on the education and experience that I had,” said Stoops. “A bachelor’s degree has a lot of filler classes and the cost is high. Associate degrees are geared toward real job situations and I appreciate that, now that I have been in the workforce for six years.”

Stoops earned the Siemens Level I Mechatronics Operator certification in December 2017, and advanced to a new position at Catalent as a trainer and technical writer for the drug substance protein purification process. Her new job involves training staff on processes, procedures, and specific manufacturing equipment. She also updates and revises standard operating procedures.

“Automation and robotics apply to many industries,” said Stoops. “In relation to my work at Catalent, I can maintain, fix, troubleshoot, and design equipment for automated processes. In manufacturing settings, they always need people to troubleshoot or re-program equipment to do different processes. Sensors get dirty and parts wear down all the time, just out of daily wear. Robotics is fun, like a puzzle. You get satisfaction in your daily job and positive feedback when you see things start working again.”

Stoops is on track to complete her education in spring 2019 by earning an Associate of Applied Science degree in Advanced Automation and Robotics Technology.

“Ivy Tech has been fun. I’ve been learning things I’ve never thought about before, like how to put together a system with electronics and pneumatics. It makes a big difference not having as many lectures, and having more lab situations. I noticed that everyone loves that. You come in after work and you’re tired, but it ends up being fun.”

Employers who wish to learn more about the Achieve Your Degree tuition deferral program can arrange a time for Ivy Tech to visit their company. To arrange a meeting, contact Jessica Duncan at or (812) 330-6349. More information about Achieve Your Degree can be found online at