IU South Bend Major Campus Initiatives

IU South Bend Major Campus Initiatives

Indiana University South Bend is the premier comprehensive public university dedicated to serving the needs of North Central Indiana and beyond.  As a regional campus of Indiana University, IU South Bend provides a diverse population with the opportunity to affordably earn a prestigious IU degree, through its quality undergraduate and graduate programs.  With its caring faculty and staff, IU South Bend is committed to an inclusive, student-centered approach that focuses on preparing its students for both the workforce and postgraduate education through rigorous coursework, faculty and student research, and creative activity.  We are a catalyst for social mobility that contributes to the vitality of our region by educating informed individuals, thoughtful stewards, innovative professionals, and responsible leaders.

The following major campus initiatives are underway to map out a path to building a brighter future for our campus and our region.

Academic Master Plan

IU South Bend’s new strategic plan calls for establishing a new academic master plan.  The last IU South Bend academic master plan was created nearly a decade ago in 2014.  The new academic master plan will align with our institutional mission, support our strategic priorities, help improve enrollment, increase revenue and reduce cost, grow the local talent pipeline, and enhance service to our community and region.  The overall outcomes for the IU South Bend Academic Master Planning (AMP) Process are to:

  • undertake a comprehensive review of our academic program portfolio to explore programs we might develop, grown, sustain, revitalize, or sunset
  • ensure our program review process helps sustain vibrant programs focused on our institutional mission and strategic priorities

Academic Master Planning at IU South Bend included a year-long process coordinated by a committee and involving 40-50 faculty selected by their deans to represent the array of disciplines and programs within each school/college.  The faculty group met for four work sessions throughout the academic year.  To synthesize the outcomes of these working meetings, smaller groups of faculty, deans, and administrators came together to prepare a draft plan.  In May 2023, this draft plan was shared with faculty groups for initial review and input.  Revisions will be made as needed before sharing the draft plan with the entire campus for input during the Fall 2023 semester. 

Career Pathways

IU South Bend is also undertaking several initiatives to help students connect their coursework to career paths and to enhance their career readiness.

Through a $350,000 grant from the Labs for Industry Futures and Transformation (LIFT) Network, IU South Bend is enhancing and developing degree pathways in computer science, health sciences, and data analytics for K-12 students, adult learners, and degree seekers in Elkhart and St. Joseph County.  Programs as part of this project include a K-12 Summer Academy, Continuing Education Units in health sciences (sonography) for current and future workers, workplace-based learning, and a new data analytics certificate.  To reach under-represented populations and enhance opportunities in the region, the campus will partner with the South Bend Community School Corporation, La Casa de Amistad, and regional workplaces.

The Titan Cadet Program, funded through a grant from the Indiana Department of Education, was launched in summer 2023.  The program has two primary goals: 1) to increase opportunities for high school students to enter educator preparation programs with transferable postsecondary credits and 2) to increase underrepresented populations among candidates enrolling in educator preparation programs.  The program combines existing dual-credit coursework offered through Indiana University with additional coursework in Education previously unavailable to area high school students, provided as part of two separate, two-week IU South Bend campus residential experiences following their junior & senior years.  The program also includes non-academic programming to help the Titan Cadets prepare for their college search, understand and access financial aid, and to build a general sense of belongingness and camaraderie amongst participants.  In addition, faculty liaisons from both the K-12 partner schools and IU South Bend will collaborate during the academic year to provide programming and track data on participants’ progress and involvement.

College Family Engagement Project

In December of 2022 IU South Bend launched the College Family Engagement Project.  The College Family Engagement Project is focused on increasing the number of low-income Indiana students pursuing and persisting through higher education by better engaging families on the transition from high school to college.  In its first six months the program has partnered with Notre Dame’s TRIO Programs to educate families on the transition from high school to college, hosted a day-long summit on the Journey to College with South Bend Community Schools for parents of middle school students, and surveyed parents on what information they need to support their student’s pathway to college.  In the second half of 2023 the project will be developing and delivering curriculum to meet the identified needs.  The project is supported by a two-year partnership with AmeriCorp VISTA through Campus Compact.

Dwyer Healthcare Simulation Center

A state-of-the-art, expanded nursing simulation and health sciences education center is being made possible thanks to a lead gift of $5 million from the Vera Z. Dwyer Charitable Trust. The newly renovated space in Parkside Hall will transform the building into high-tech, flexible space for the campus’s radiography program and nursing program. The Simulation Center will provide more interprofessional learning opportunities for the students and health professionals in our community and will help prepare our graduates to better serve the community as they transition from the classroom to the clinic.  The Center is scheduled to open in Spring of 2024. Learn more about the Dwyer Healthcare Simulation Center and ways you can contribute to its success.

Financial Sustainability Initiative

To develop a sustainable budget that is realistic for our current enrollment, and to position the campus to invest in growth opportunities, IU South Bend is undertaking a financial sustainability initiative.  This initiative includes an evaluation of processes and resource allocation and ways to enhance and diversify revenue streams.  Some examples of activities as part of the financial sustainability initiative include maximizing building and space utilization and restructuring schools and colleges to achieve administrative and operational savings. 

A major organizational re-design effort is centered in Academic Affairs.  The goal of this process is to create an organizational configuration for the academic schools and colleges that maximizes academic synergies (e.g., program, research, etc.) and shared efficiencies, while reducing overall administrative costs.  A task force was convened in summer 2022 and submitted their summative report to the Chancellor at the end of April 2023.  Their work included researching alternate structures, gathering information from other institutions that had reorganized, collecting data on our current structure, developing possible models, and managing a deliberative process for gathering campus input.  Based on the work of the task force and campus conversations, the Chancellor has chosen a model that is now in the development phase, with the intent to have the new structure in place for fall 2024.  This organizational design effort will not affect students or their ability to take classes and stay on track to complete their degree programs.

The IU South Bend Transition Monitoring Team (TMT) is a group that invites comments on the change process to hear how things are going for people and the effects that the transition is having on people.

Transition Monitoring Team

Gap Year Program

IU South Bend’s new program pilot “Map the Gap” will launch this fall to engage high school graduates taking a “gap year” to build career and life skills, introduce them to career opportunities, and match positions with higher education requirements.  With industry and community leaders, IU South Bend is creating a year-long program of monthly interactions – training, job shadowing, mentor guidance, parent involvement, and on-campus events that will allow participants to engage in thinking about their future.  The goals of the program are to:

  • Better prepare high school graduates for post-secondary study by providing exposure to campus life and individualized guidance for college affordability
  • Provide guidance towards making their next major life decision that aligns with participant passions and skills
  • Help retain talent in our region by connecting them with local mentors and company professionals and increase the exposure and admissions to IU South Bend

Map the Gap also gives employers an intentional and structured way to interface with the high school graduate pipeline of future workers and provides a meaningful connection between local professionals and youth through the steady stream of mentorship connections.

Groups Scholars

IU South Bend is bringing the renowned Indiana University Groups Scholars program to campus starting this summer.  The Groups Scholars Program, started at IU Bloomington in 1968, is designed to increase college attendance among first-generation, underrepresented students and provides academic, financial, and social support to help students attain a bachelor’s degree.

IU South Bend’s program will focus on supporting 21st Century Scholars in its first year.

Students admitted to the IU South Bend program will be engaged in an immersive summer experience while making friends and learning new skills.  Scholars will have the opportunity to take a free 3-credit summer course studying the history of Black and Chicano Civil Rights Movements, while also participating in a variety of community building and college preparation activities.  Along with getting a jump start in college, scholars will receive a summer and academic year scholarships.  Learn more about Groups Scholars.

Healthcare Talent Partnership

Within the South Bend - Elkhart region, we face a healthcare talent attraction, development, and retention crisis.  During the summer of 2022, casual conversations were held among leaders across higher education and healthcare to better understand how the talent crisis has affected our region.  The open discussion allowed for awareness of how many organizations and programs are currently affected by the crisis.  These discussions sparked the idea of a regional partnership that offers collaboration across different sectors.  Over the past eight months, research has been conducted to identify an effective way to create a healthcare talent partnership in our region.  The analysis consisted of collaborative summits with representatives of healthcare, higher education, K-12, and economic development from the South Bend - Elkhart region, researching best practices and speaking with exemplary partnerships across the nation, and identifying the opportunities and resources for a partnership in our region.  Plans to launch the partnership in the second half of 2023 are underway.  Learn more about the Healthcare Talent Partnership initiative.

Indiana College Core Certificate

The Indiana College Core (ICC) certificate allows for high school students to obtain a block of 30 credit hours of college-level coursework that includes specific competencies and learning outcomes commonly found in general education programs.  The ICC certificate also provides ease of transferability in core credits between institutions.  IU South Bend has been working with local schools to establish them as a delivery site for the ICC certificate from Indiana University South Bend.  Learn more about Indiana College Core partnership opportunities.

Innovation & Entrepreneurship

IU South Bend will be creating new innovation and entrepreneurship programs on campus.  We are building an innovation and entrepreneurship center in Northside Hall that will include the North Central Indiana Small Business Development Center as well as spaces for students and community members to learn more about business development, entrepreneurship, and innovation.  The campus has been working with enFocus over the past year to identify needs within the existing entrepreneurship ecosystem and the search is underway for an inaugural Director of Innovation & Entrepreneurship.  Stay tuned for more updates as this exciting project continues.

Strengthening Institutions Program Grant

IU South Bend received a $2 million Strengthening Institutions Program Grant from the U.S. Department of Education to increase retention and graduation rates.  The project will help the campus accomplish three goals:  

  1. Increase retention of low-income and underrepresented students 
  2. Improve student achievement in key gateway courses and eliminate achievement gaps 
  3. Increase 4- and 6-year graduation rates to be more equitable among all IU South Bend undergraduate students 

In spring and summer 2023, the campus established the infrastructure for the following Strengthening Institutions Program projects:

  • A new program (Titan Teams) will provide coaching and case management for 240 first-year students each year. Four Titan Team Leaders were hired in spring 2023 and have already begun serving these students.
  • A new Science Tutoring Center, which will be located on the first floor of the library and begin serving students in fall 2023.
  • An Office of Professional Engagement that will increase internship opportunities and preparation for students, with the goal of increasing the number of students who complete internships. The campus hired a Director of Professional Engagement in June 2023.
  • Select first-year high DFW sections (grades of D, F, or withdrawal) in English, Chemistry, Biology, and Math piloted the use of supplemental instructors and peer tutors to reduce the number of D or F grades and withdrawals.

Indiana University South Bend

1700 Mishawaka Ave
South Bend, IN 46615
Phone: 574-520-4872