Complete College America announces Ivy Tech Indianapolis chancellor, Dr. Lorenzo Esters, as a national fellow

During its annual Fellows’ Retreat in June, Complete College America (CCA) named Ivy Tech Community College Indianapolis Chancellor Dr. Lorenzo Esters as one of its newest national fellows. Fellows represent the nations’ leading experts that shape the college completion movement. 

Dr. Esters began his tenure with the College on July 1, 2021, after serving as vice president for Advancement and Member Engagement with the Association of American Colleges and Universities (AACU). His professional experiences have been uniquely centered on generating philanthropic and institutional capacity to support student access, completion and career readiness efforts, particularly for those from marginalized backgrounds. 

Before his time with the AACU, Dr. Esters served as executive director for Higher Education Partnerships within the Global Education Division of Educational Testing Service. In this role, he led the “Skills for a New Economy Initiative,” which focused on creating new solutions for workplace success by visualizing the skills, capabilities and knowledge needed to thrive in a changing economy.  

He also served as vice president for philanthropy at Strada Education Network, a nonprofit corporation located in Indianapolis, Indiana, as well as the inaugural vice president for Student Success and Enrollment Management at Kentucky State University. Additionally, Dr. Esters had served as vice president for the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities’ Office for Access. 

CCA Fellows are a select group of leaders who have dedicated themselves to student success, embracing bold reform, and implementing CCA’s pillars of student success transformation. Fellows work closely with CCA, sharing their knowledge with the Alliance, and come together to confront and overcome higher education’s greatest challenges. The program convenes members regularly around the best ways to serve college students across the country. 

Since 2009, CCA has worked extensively with key partners who have championed and guided the organization’s work. The Fellows formalize these relationships, adding visibility to these partners’ work and ensuring positive advancement of the college completion movement. The full roster of National CCA Fellows is available at completecollege.org/cca-fellows

“We look forward to working with and learning from this group of experts and change-makers who are known for closing institutional performance gaps for minoritized students and solving some of the most important higher education issues in our country,” said Complete College America CEO Yolanda Watson Spiva. “Lorenzo Esters is a devoted, trusted, and equity-minded educator and leader who has a bold and declarative vision of inclusion that is well respected in higher education.”

About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana and also serves thousands of students annually online. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering associate degree and short-term certificate programs, and trainings that align to the needs of the community. The College also offers courses and associate degree programs that seamlessly transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana, as well as out of state, for a more affordable route to a Bachelor’s degree.

About Complete College America

Complete College America is a bold national advocate for dramatically increasing college completion rates and closing institutional performance gaps. CCA works with states, systems, institutions, and partners to scale highly effective structural reforms and promote policies that ultimately improve student success. For more information, visit CompleteCollege.org.

Highlights from Spring 2021 Grad Walk event

On May 6 and 7, Ivy Tech Indianapolis held a “Grad Walk” event for 2021 graduates to have a chance to be filmed walking across the stage for the virtual commencement ceremony videos. The commencement videos will be available on or after June 1. In the meantime, there is a photo gallery available to check out highlights from the Grad Walk. Congratulations, graduates!

You are welcome to download any of the photos below. You can also find them at link.ivytech.edu/IndyGradWalk-May2021.

Marian University, Ivy Tech Partnering to Recruit, Prepare More Diverse Leadership for Hoosier Classrooms

Future teachers could earn three degrees simultaneously for no more than $45,000

The Fred S. Klipsch Educators College at Marian University and Ivy Tech Community College are teaming up to offer a dual-admissions program aimed at recruiting and preparing more teachers with diverse backgrounds to lead Indiana’s classrooms and reduce higher education expenses.

The Marian-Ivy Tech initiative announced today at Southport High School includes a low-to-no-cost innovative dual-admission, dual-enrollment program.

As part of the cadet teaching program, while still in high school, students will begin earning an associate degree at Ivy Tech, before transitioning to the Klipsch Educators College where they will earn a bachelor’s degree with a teacher certification. To complete the program, students will then pursue a master’s degree at no cost and participate in a one-year paid clinical residency in an Indiana classroom.

“Highly effective teachers are indispensable to advancing student achievement and the educational attainment level in Indiana.” said Marian University President Daniel J. Elsener. “Marian University’s Klipsch Educators College embraces innovative approaches to increasing the teacher talent pool. This collaboration with Ivy Tech will do much to bring diverse, highly talented and well-prepared teachers to every classroom in Indiana.”

Students who complete the program will earn three degrees – associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees – for a total of $45,000 (not including possible financial aid which could lower the cost even more).

“This partnership will provide the opportunity for many more students to earn an affordable, high quality teaching degree to fill the critical teacher shortage Indiana is facing,” said Dr. Sue Ellspermann, President of Ivy Tech. “In fact, students could earn their first year free while in high school through Ivy Tech dual credit, earning a Technical Certificate within the Next Level Programs of Study.”

According to Klipsch Educators College dean LaTonya Turner, Ph.D., 40 percent of today’s school population is students of color, and the teacher population is not reflective of this.

“It is incumbent upon our universities, both public and private, to aggressively recruit highly qualified and talented individuals to lead Hoosier classrooms,” Turner said. “The Klipsch Educators College recognizes the need for teachers of all backgrounds, and we are focusing on our efforts to prepare the best and the brightest to help drive student success.”

To recruit more educators of color, Marian University is partnering with six Ivy Tech campuses throughout the state, including Indianapolis, South Bend, Fort Wayne, Evansville, Lafayette, and Lake County. The initiative will begin as a pilot program of 100 students in fall 2021 with a goal of 50 percent of the participants being students of color.  By 2025, Turner said the partnership plans to enroll 500 students.

“We know students of color benefit when they have the opportunity to learn from educators who look like them. Our most recent data show fewer than 15 percent of educators graduating from college come from a minority population. There’s a clear disconnect between the classroom need and our current pipeline of educators coming out of college,” said Indiana Commissioner for Higher Education Teresa Lubbers. “This partnership is an innovative opportunity to break down barriers and continue moving toward Indiana’s goal of having a diverse teaching corps, which is to the benefit of all Hoosier students.”

During the last several years, Indiana and the country have struggled with a teacher shortage. Recent studies indicate most Hoosier schools report a teacher shortage, and that by empowering students to start educator preparation programs earlier in their education, they see higher program completions, ultimately with more qualified teachers in the classroom. 

“Indiana is committed to elevating the purposeful, difference-making profession of teaching, including attracting exceptional candidates to serve Indiana’s more than 1.1 million students,” said Dr. Katie Jenner, Indiana Secretary of Education. “By teaming up, Marian University and Ivy Tech, in partnership with K-12 schools, will allow students to go from high school, to college, to teaching in their own classroom through a seamless pathway option. This partnership is an important step in strengthening our teacher pipeline, as it follows researched best practices focused on the importance of engaging candidates as early as possible in their education, as well as encouraging racially and ethnically diverse candidates to become teachers.”

About Marian University Indianapolis
Founded in 1937, Marian University is the only Catholic university in Indianapolis and central Indiana. In 2021, Marian is serving more than 2,500 undergraduate and more than 1,150 graduate students earning degrees in the arts, business, education, engineering, math, medicine, nursing, ministry, and the natural and physical sciences. The university’s high-impact, experiential curriculum is designed to provide hands-on, collaborative learning opportunities for students from 40 states and 23 nations. Marian climbed in U.S. News & World Report’s 2021 Midwestern rankings to be named #3 Most Innovative Regional University, #5 Best Value University, and #28 Best Regional University. Marian University opened its College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2013, making it the first new school of medicine in the state of Indiana in 110 years. Marian’s national champion varsity athletic programs include the 2012 and 2015 NAIA Football Championship, the 2016 and 2017 NAIA Women’s Basketball Championship, the 2019 NAIA Women’s Volleyball Championship, and more than 40 USA Cycling national championships.

About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. As Indiana’s community college, Ivy Tech has more than 40 locations, including 19 campuses, offers dual credit in more than 400 high schools throughout Indiana, and serves more than 150,000 students annually. Committed to student success, Ivy Tech is open access, offers small class sizes, the lowest tuition in the state, and modalities including in-person, virtual, online, and “Learn Anywhere” in which students decide week-to-week whether to participate in-person, virtually or asynchronously. Ivy Tech serves as the state’s workforce development engine offering associate degrees and short-term credentials that align to employer needs and seamlessly transfer to other colleges and universities for a more affordable Bachelor’s degree.

Ivy Tech connects with community and car enthusiasts at annual World of Wheels

The Ivy Tech Central Indiana School of Advanced Manufacturing and Applied Sciences (SAMEAS) was the educational partner for the World of Wheels event on April 16-18, 2021, at the Indiana State Fairgrounds. World of Wheels is one of the country’s largest custom car shows, with more than 34,000 attendees at this year’s event.

As the educational partner, several faculty and staff were involved with representing Ivy Tech. The SAMEAS team would like to thank everyone that participated at our booth and spoke to prospective students!

To learn more about SAMEAS, visit link.ivytech.edu/SAMEAS-Spotlight and for information about World of Wheels, visit autorama.com.