Dr. Keith Newman accepts new position at Southern Nazarene University

(Originally posted on The Sojourn’s website on March 27, 2017)

It was announced Friday, March 24, that Dr. Keith Newman, chancellor of IWU’s Marion campus, will start his new position as president of Southern Nazarene University on Aug. 1.

Dr. Newman started the Joy Council during his time here at IWU. He, along with Dr. Wright, held a picnic for the council in 2014. Photo provided by Lisa Poole.

Newman said he has many connections with SNU, as he received one of his graduate degrees from there, his daughter attended the school as an undergraduate student and he served on the board of trustees many years ago. When he was first nominated for this position, he didn’t pursue it. But as he and his wife began to pray about it, and after receiving encouragement from others, he decided he should submit himself to it.

The process was kept very confidential, but he kept in touch with IWU President Dr. David Wright and made sure he was aware of it. Newman said Wright has been very encouraging and supportive during this time.

“Personally, I am grateful for Dr. Newman’s close partnership in recent years and am proud of him as a friend and colleague,” Wright said in a statement to the university. “He and (Newman’s wife, Carolyn) will be sorely missed.”

Newman was involved in the Acts of Kindness with NSO students in 2014. Photo provided by Lisa Poole

Starting in June 2009, Newman was vice president of University Relations. In 2011, he took over Dr. Todd Voss’ position as executive vice president. When Wright became president of the university in 2013, Newman became the CEO of Residential Learning and executive vice president of the Marion campus. Last month, his title was changed to chancellor of IWU- Marion.

Newman said he is trying his best to follow God’s calling for him throughout this entire process.

“We talk a lot about life calling (at IWU) and I really believe that. And I don’t believe life calling is necessarily a career or a geographical spot on a map or a particular company or institution,” Newman said. “But I do think that God wires us up in a way and I think God has places that he sometimes will ask us to go and serve and so for the last eight years it’s been Indiana Wesleyan and looking forward to finishing well here, and then excited about what the possibilities might be in Oklahoma City.”

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As Newman makes the transition to his new job this summer, he said he wants to thank everyone who has been a part of his time here at IWU.

“Thanks for investing in my life, and thanks for helping prepare me. I don’t think God wastes anything, whether it’s pain we have in our life or achievements that we have, relationships … but I think even in those challenging relationships, that can help prepare us for what’s next,” Newman said. “So as I go to a new assignment, there’s no doubt in my mind that they wouldn’t have offered me this job if I wouldn’t have had the experience of Indiana Wesleyan.”

While he will be an official employee of IWU until the end of June, Newman’s job will be completed next month with commencement. He plans to spend May and June making the transition to his new position in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Beckett, South, Martin no longer having freshmen-only halls

(Originally posted on The Sojourn’s website on December 1, 2016)

Beginning next fall, Beckett East, South East and Martin East will no longer be freshmen-only halls.

According to Matt Thompson, dean for Residential Learning, the buildings will now be a fully comprehensive model, which means a building that houses all students, freshmen through seniors. These residence halls will now be set up exactly like Carmin, Evans, Hodson and Reed.

Over the last several years, the mentoring program in Beckett and South halls have changed, according to Thompson. The changes include no longer having someone working full-time on the program and having the program an option for incoming freshmen living in those halls, instead of mandatory.

The reason for changing this is so all students of every age can share life together, Thompson said.

“We believe in the benefits of informal mentoring and support that comes from students at every stage of their college experience,” Thompson said. “We think that our sophomores, juniors and seniors have a lot they can teach our freshmen students and that happens easiest and more naturally when they’re living together.”

Thompson said making all of the dorms a fully comprehensive model will also help with a better continuity in the residential experience. This now prevents students from having to move out of the hall after their freshmen year and having the challenge of finding another residence hall community.

“We lose students as sophomores and we wonder how much that plays into it, if there’s not that continuity of community,” Thompson said. “And so this allows for a great number of people to stay and invest in that community over multiple years.”

Thompson said he wants students to know this decision was not taken lightly and was thought over for more than a year. He also said him and his team know something will be lost by not having a freshmen-only space.

“We don’t want to pretend like that was not a good experience or not beneficial or not an enjoyable experience,” Thompson said. “We know it was and we’re going to lose something … but we really feel like the things our community will gain with the change will outweigh some of that.”

Suspect arrested in Scripture break-in

(Originally posted on The Sojourn’s website on November 11, 2016)

Campus Police and the Grant County Sheriff Department have arrested a suspect connected to the break-in at Scripture Hall on Nov. 6.

According to Officer Scott Haley, Campus Police received a call at approximately 5 a.m. of a man walking in the residence hall. The man reportedly walked into several unlocked rooms and stole items such as an iPad, cell phone and $40 cash.

Yesterday evening, Nov. 10, they were able to arrest the suspect. According to an e-mail from Andrew Parker, dean for developmental learning, the suspect was able to get into the residence hall through an open window on the first floor of the building.

The e-mail, that was sent to the IWU community, also said that Campus Police are now going to increase police personnel on duty during the night shift. Facilities Services are also taking extra safety measures such as ensuring all first floor screens are shut into place and installing blocks in all of the first floor windows for every residence hall.

According to the e-mail, windows in the lodges and townhouses operate differently, so they are looking at different options for those living areas.

Parker also encourages students who are experiencing distress, anxiety and trauma from this incident to seek counseling at the Center for Student Success, located in suite 220 in the Barnes Student Center.

Unknown suspect breaks into Scripture Hall

(Originally posted on The Sojourn’s website on November 6, 2016)

A cell phone, iPad and $40 cash were stolen early Sunday morning, Nov. 6, in Scripture Hall.

According to Officer Scott Haley, Campus Police received a call at approximately 5 a.m. of a man walking in the residence hall. All of the residents were evacuated and sent to the Kem Hall lobby while multiple officers searched the building for the suspect.

The suspect has yet to be found, but Haley said witnesses described him as a 5″9 black male wearing sweatpants and a dark colored hoodie. Nobody was hurt during the break-in, and Haley was told none of the victims spoke to the suspect because they were asleep.

The items stolen come from multiple unlocked rooms in Scripture. Haley stressed the importance of making sure residents’ doors are locked when away or sleeping.

“I talked to and took statements, information from the victims that had things stolen, every one of them told me that the room was unlocked,” Haley said. “I stressed to them that their door of their rooms needs to be locked at all times regardless if they’re away or asleep, it’s very important to keep the doors locked.”

Haley said he will work with IT on Monday to get the names of the students who swiped into Scripture during the time of the break-in so he can talk to them in order to get more information.

“We’ve got a couple days worth of following up to do, but we’re working on it,” Haley said.

IWU Board of Trustees approves plans for new football stadium

(Originally posted on The Sojourn’s website on October 13, 2016)

The Indiana Wesleyan University board of trustees met on Oct. 7 to approve plans for the new football stadium.

According to a press release from the board, the budget for the stadium is $16 million and construction has already started.

The board revealed that IWU received $5.5 million to help pay for the stadium; IWU President Dr. David Wright has not revealed who donated the gift.

The press release said the stadium project will include a 17,000 square foot building with player and coach locker rooms, an athletic training suite and a weight/exercise training room for all IWU athletes. The project also includes artificial turf, concession stands and “an area for entertaining alumni and other special guests.”

Other topics at the board meeting, according to the press release, included approving two new undergraduate programs: a bachelor’s degree in International Relations & Security and a bachelor’s degree in Design for Social Impact. Other programs approved included four certificate programs for graduate students enrolled in the Master of Education program. Those certificate programs are biology, technology digital literacy, mathematics and English.

There will be an IWU Community Meeting on Nov. 4 where Dr. Wright and the board will discuss these updates and announcements.

IWU to accept ITT Tech credit transfers, more details on closure released

Last week, it was announced that Indiana Wesleyan University will accept transfer credits from ITT Technical Institute students. This announcement was made after the institute announced its closure on Sept. 6.

Dr. David Wright, president of IWU, said the university will accept up to 90 credits from transfer students. In addition to the credit transfer, he said IWU will also give them a 10 percent scholarship to “assist them in making the transition.”

“We want to do all we can reasonably do to help ITT students who are struggling under very difficult circumstances,” Wright said.

There was a press conference held Tuesday, Sept. 12, at the Indiana State Capitol Building for the Indiana Commission for Higher Education to give more details about this.

According to the Indiana Commission for Higher Education, ITT Tech closed due to two years of “increased scrutiny by its accreditor and the U.S. Department of Education.”

The Indiana Commission also stated at the press conference that ITT closed all 136 of its locations. The Indiana campuses are located in Indianapolis, Fort Wayne, South Bend, Merrillville and Newburg.

According to Dr. R. David Rose, vice president of nonresidential programs, IWU has worked with ITT Tech for the past 30 years, evaluating the courses and working with the students who wanted to attend IWU in the future.

Because of ITT Tech’s closure, Rose said he encourages other schools and universities to assist these “displaced students” by offering them additional resources.

“IWU is honored to respond to this request and believe we are impacting our community for Christ,” Rose said.”

Read the full statement from Dr. David Wright below:

“For thirty years we have been serving ITT students by providing a well respect pathway for them to transfer their ITT coursework into degree programs at IWU.  Over the years our IWU faculty have evaluated over 500 ITT courses to ensure that they meet our accreditation standards.  So, following the closure of ITT, for existing ITT students we will accept up to 90 credits in transfer toward an IWU degree.  We will also provide a 10% scholarship to assist them in making the transition.  There will be some exceptions to these provisions because of accreditation and professional licensure requirements that we must meet.  But we want to do all we can reasonably do to help ITT students who are struggling under very difficult circumstances.”

Campus Police use parking pass increase revenue for new safety app

(Originally posted on The Sojourn’s website on September 8, 2016)

The cost for an Indiana Wesleyan University parking pass increased this year from $15 to $50.

According to Mario Rangel, director of Campus Police and emergency management, the revenue from the increase is going to be used “strictly for emergency preparedness and safety.”

Some of the revenue will go to installing security cameras, purchasing new uniforms and laptops, to train students who work for the department and more.

The revenue was also used to launch a new safety app called The Rave Guardian.  With this app, students are able to use their student e-mail address for a login and be able to add their information to their profile. There are multiple features on the app to ensure campus safety for students.

timerpic-438x320.pngOne feature in the app is a safety timer, where students can set a timer for themselves for when they will be back to their destination. If the timer expires, it will notify Campus Police.

Another feature is submitting an anonymous tip, where a student can share information with Rangel without him knowing their identity.tipspic-1-335x320

“It’s just a way for students to report things that may be difficult to report if they are their co-workers or friends,” Rangel said. “But yet you’re still concerned about this person’s safety.”

Other features on the app include an emergency contact list, a button to call Campus Police and a button to call 9-1-1.

Rangel said he is very appreciative of students paying for the parking passes so Campus Police is able to improve the safety on campus.

“It’s all thanks to everyone for the parking permits and for students pouring into this,” Rangel said. “We’re going to use the money the best we know how to keep the students safe.”

Students who want to know more information about why the parking passes increased and about the department, can click on the “Campus Police” tab under “IWU Life” on MyPortal.