On March 28, we will break ground for our new Science and Engineering Laboratory Building. This facility is vital to our growing commitment to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM).
During the IMPACT Campaign, IUPUI's School of Science has seen record student enrollment, faculty hiring, and research productivity increases. Serving 2,500 undergraduate and graduate majors, the school acts as a significant feeder to the health and life science workforce that is critical to the success of central Indiana's economy.
Contributions from private sources are accelerating this success.
Gifts have funded several new undergraduate and graduate scholarships. The inaugural Indumati Sukhatme RISE Scholarship (RISE stands for Research, International, Service Learning, and Experiential Learning), was established by Executive Vice Chancellor Uday Sukhatme in memory of his mother. In addition, the School of Science will offer two other RISE scholarships:
- The Geraldine and David Rigdon RISE Scholarship benefits undergraduate majors in the Department of Mathematical Sciences.
- The William H. and Elizabeth M. Reid RISE Scholarship, endowed by Acting Dean Emeritus Bart Ng, will fund international experiences.
Retired Air Force Col. Desco E. McKay, who passed away earlier this month, established the Desco E. McKay STEM Scholarship Fund. It offers a renewable scholarship that will be awarded to high-achieving mechanical science and engineering majors at IUPUI. Other support designated to support the STEM disciplines includes the Science and Mathematics Future Teacher Scholarship, which will be given to undergraduates who intend to pursue a career in K-12 math or science teaching.
For graduate students, the Charalambos D. Aliprantis Prize in Mathematics, also created by Acting Dean Emeritus Bart Ng, memorializes a former colleague, "Roko" Aliprantis, who promoted interdisciplinary research in math and economic theory.
Private funding also seeds basic and translational research being done in interdisciplinary centers based in the School of Science.
More than $180,000 in private gifts are designated for the IU Center for Regenerative Biology and Medicine at IUPUI, including a $50,000 seed gift from P. E. MacAllister, chair, Indianapolis-based MacAllister Machinery Company. A major goal of the Center for Regenerative Biology and Medicine is to build an endowment of $10 million over the next 10 years. These funds will enable the center to support postdoctoral and graduate fellowships, undergraduate research scholars, startup funding for faculty recruitment, and equipment not typically funded by agency research grants.
The Center for Earth and Environmental Science (CEES) has played a major role in monitoring water quality in the city as well as establishing the Lilly Arbor Project along the White River as a wetlands restoration project. In both projects, private support has not only funded the research but also the involvement of students and teachers interested in promoting science education.
During the course of the IMPACT Campaign, the Laura Hare Charitable Trust has given nearly $500,000 to CEES to support K-12 STEM programming and teacher education initiatives on the IUPUI campus. This year, Citizens Water made an unrestricted gift of $50,000 to CEES to help sustain this initiative. Funding from these two sources will continue annual support for outdoor science education programming to more than 3,000 elementary and middle school students in central Indiana.
As the new Science and Engineering Laboratory Building takes shape, IUPUI is proud to honor these private contributions to our School of Science. These gifts build the school's capacity to support students, research, and engagement, ultimately having an impact on hundreds of thousands of residents of central Indiana.
In a future issue of "Greetings from IUPUI," I will highlight how the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI has benefited from gifts to the IMPACT Campaign and the importance of the Science and Engineering Laboratory Building in its mission.