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Student-Centered

Butler University to Provide COVID-19 Vaccine to Students on Campus

BY

PUBLISHED ON Mar 30 2021

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.—Butler University will offer free COVID-19 vaccinations to all students, beginning next week. If enough vaccine remains following student vaccinations, Butler will make it available to faculty and staff.

Butler was informed late last week by the Indiana Department of Health that the State would make doses of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine available to colleges and universities across Indiana, with the goal of vaccinating as many students as possible prior to the end of the semester. Out-of-state residents and international students are also eligible for the program.

Butler students who choose to participate will receive the first dose April 7–9 in the Efroymson Family Gymnasium in Hinkle Fieldhouse; the second dose will be administered May 4–6 in the Health and Recreation Complex on campus, immediately following Finals Week but prior to Commencement Ceremonies and students departing campus. Students in Butler’s renowned College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences will assist in administering the vaccines.

“We appreciate the Indiana Department of Health for partnering with us to make this vaccine available,” said Brent Rockwood, Vice President and Chief of Staff at Butler. “This will have a tremendous impact on our efforts to establish herd immunity on our campus, and will allow us to more safely restore a full campus experience in the fall.”

At this time, Butler is not requiring students to get vaccinated for COVID-19. The University is, however, highly encouraging students to participate in the on-campus vaccination program. Rockwood indicated that vaccinations may be required of students for fall 2021.
 

Media Contact:
Mark Apple
mapple1@butler.edu
317-519-8592

About Butler University
Butler University is a nationally recognized comprehensive university encompassing six colleges: Arts, Business, Communication, Education, Liberal Arts & Sciences, and Pharmacy & Health Sciences. Approximately 4,600 undergraduate and 800 graduate students are enrolled at Butler, representing 45 states and 30 countries. More than 75 percent of Butler students will participate in some form of internship, and Butler students have had significant success after graduation, as demonstrated by the University’s 98 percent placement rate within six months of graduation. The University was recently listed as the No. 1 regional university in the Midwest, according to the U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings, in addition to being included in The Princeton Review’s annual “best colleges” guidebook.

Butler University
Student-Centered

Butler University to Provide COVID-19 Vaccine to Students on Campus

First doses will be administered from April 7–9, and second doses from May 4–6

Mar 30 2021 Read more

Butler Student Affairs Launches Free Headspace Subscriptions for Students, Promoting Mindfulness and Well-being

By Sam Varie ’21

Butler University’s Division of Student Affairs has announced it is offering all students a free, annual subscription to the mindfulness and well-being app, Headspace.

“I am excited we can offer students another resource to support their well-being,” said Dr. Frank E. Ross, Vice President for Student Affairs. “We are committed to finding new ways to offer accessible services to students, regardless of if they’re learning on or off Butler’s campus. Headspace allows us to meet students where they are and provide a tool that promotes our commitment to wellness.”

The Division began searching for a tool after feedback from a recent Student Government Association (SGA) survey indicated students would be interested in an app that provided meditation and well-being services.

“Students told us they wanted additional wellness resources, and with the national rise of virtual health support, Headspace was the perfect choice for Butler,” said Beth Lohman, Associate Director of Recreation and Wellness, and the Headspace campus administrator.  “I hope students use this tool to slow down and take care of themselves.”

Roua Daas, a senior Psychology major and SGA’s Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, agreed that this is an impactful way to care for students’ mental health.

“Headspace is an accessible and easy way to improve our mindfulness and meditation practices. During a time of such high anxiety, frustration, and emotional upheaval, it is so important for students to explore different ways to prioritize their mental health,” Daas said, speaking to the stress of the pandemic.

Headspace provides more than 1,000 hours of research-based, guided exercises and videos designed to help users live healthier and happier. From quick breathing exercises, to yoga classes, to guided meditations, students will have a new toolkit to help them stress less, move more, and sleep soundly.

Caroline Osler, a sophomore and an executive member of Be The Voice, a mental health advocacy organization, said she’s looking forward to having access to Headspace, especially during the pandemic.

“I think many students have become more conscientious of their well-being and mental health due to the pandemic, and they are looking for new types of support,” Osler said. “We are all attached to our devices right now with hybrid classes and activities, so having a resource like Headspace that is at our fingertips and allows us to pause will be beneficial to our mental health.” 

Students can activate their free subscription at any time at butler.edu/headspace and sign up using their university email address.

Maddie Riess, a junior Psychology major, added that Headspace has been on her wish list for a while, but the cost was a barrier.

“I am super excited to have access to Headspace,” Riess said. “I have been wanting to try out this app for a while now, and the only thing holding me back was finances. Now that it’s free, I am looking forward to using it, and I’m sure many of my peers are feeling the same way.”

 

Photo from left: Caroline Osler, Dr. Frank E. Ross, Roua Daas

Photo from left: Caroline Osler, Dr. Frank E. Ross, Roua Daas
Student-Centered

Butler Student Affairs Launches Free Headspace Subscriptions for Students, Promoting Mindfulness and Well-being

The app provides convenient, accessible support through guided excersises meant to help users stress less, move more, and sleep soundly

Butler University Food Pantry
Student-Centered

Butler University Launches Student Food Pantry

BY Katie Grieze

PUBLISHED ON Mar 12 2021

A new resource through the Butler University Volunteer Center aims to help alleviate food insecurity on campus.

The Butler Food Pantry opened this month in Atherton Union, Room 100. Staffed by student members of the University’s Volunteer Center, the pantry provides free, nonperishable food packages for any Butler student in need of assistance.

“Combating food insecurity is an important way for us to support student success and ensure all students can thrive,” says Dr. Frank E. Ross, Vice President for Student Affairs. “The Butler Food Pantry meets a fundamental need, enabling students to focus on what matters most: a robust educational experience. Students nationwide are facing food insecurity, and that need has been exacerbated by the pandemic. I am grateful that the Food Pantry is here to serve and support Butler students’ holistic well-being.”

The basic needs of college students have received more attention from researchers in recent years, with many studies examining factors such as hunger. According to the College & University Food Bank Alliance (CUFBA), about 30 percent of college students experience food insecurity, and recent surveys administered by Butler’s Division of Student Affairs have shown this issue also impacts students at Butler. The new Food Pantry is dedicated to providing free, nutritious foods to help students thrive.

Packages are distributed on Wednesdays and Fridays every other week, and all Butler students are eligible to request one box per distribution week. Students in need of food assistance can place orders in advance, indicating their desired pick-up time, box size, and dietary needs. The Volunteer Center is committed to maintaining the privacy of students who utilize the Food Pantry, and all staff members have signed confidentiality agreements.

Those who would like to support the pantry will have the opportunity to do so, either through monetary gifts or the donation of food items.

The new resource has been in the works for a little over a year, starting in late 2019 with assessments that found a demonstrated need for food assistance among Butler students. Caroline Huck-Watson, Executive Director of Student Involvement & Leadership at Butler, also attended local workshops on launching food pantries, conducted research to learn about similar services at other universities, and referenced national resources such as CUFBA.

“This is something I personally feel very passionate about, and there have been students and other staff who have also felt very passionate about this, so it’s exciting to see this come to fruition,” Huck-Watson says.

Throughout the process, Huck-Watson has partnered with Brooke Blevins, a Butler senior who serves as Student Director of the Volunteer Center. The Human Communication and Organizational Leadership major, who initially got involved with the Volunteer Center through a Fall Alternative Break trip in her first semester, says volunteering and service have shaped her time at Butler. That experience has culminated this year in her leadership of the Food Pantry, which she has been able to turn into both an internship and the focus of her Honors thesis.

“This project has really consumed my life in the best way possible,” Blevins says. “Working on the Food Pantry has been incredible. I’m grateful for the chance to put my time and energy into something so useful, and I’ve already been hearing from students who are so excited about this resource.”

In addition to assisting with research on best practices for campus food pantries, Blevins has helped train the Volunteer Center students who are staffing the pantry, plan logistics for box packing and pick-ups, and spread the word about the new service. She has enjoyed learning more about what goes on behind the scenes to develop, launch, and communicate about a campus-wide initiative. The experience has gone hand-in-hand with her academic studies.

“In my major-related classes, so much of it is just learning about effective ways that groups work together, and effective ways to communicate different ideas,” she says. “Having that background and textbook knowledge has been very applicable to working with so many different people to get things done and get this resource up and running as quickly as possible.”

Huck-Watson says the Food Pantry will continue to evolve based on feedback. All students who use the service will be invited to complete surveys about their experience, which will help staff members learn more about how to meet needs effectively. And while the current pick-up-only system was developed with pandemic restrictions in mind, the team plans to adapt to any changing safety protocols over the coming months to find what works best for Butler.

“This resource is vital when we think about a person’s basic needs—what they need to be successful in their everyday lives, academic lives, and co-curricular lives,” Huck-Watson says. “The ability to help students supplement those needs, and hopefully to remove some of the stress that’s involved with food insecurity, is so important.”


To make a monetary donation to the Butler University Food Pantry, click here.

 

Media Contact:
Katie Grieze
Senior Content Manager
kgrieze@butler.edu
260-307-3403

Butler University Food Pantry
Student-Centered

Butler University Launches Student Food Pantry

Organized by the Volunteer Center, the new program provides support for students in need of food assistance

Mar 12 2021 Read more

Bulldogs Connect: The Online Network for Butler Students and Alumni

By Taylor Hensley

Sam Farber first logged in to Bulldogs Connect when a mentor suggested he use the digital networking platform in his internship search. Farber, a sophomore Marketing and Finance major at Butler University, reached out to Greg Jung, MBA ’98 to talk about potential internships. But Farber ultimately received valuable advice for a business he was preparing to launch. Jung, a marketing professional whose Bulldogs Connect profile indicates he is willing to help Butler students with “advising about specific industries or careers” and “finding jobs and internships,” provided website and other business advice to Farber ahead of the launch of Twillows—a company that creates customized hoodies, pillows, tank-tops, mugs, and more.

Butler launched Bulldogs Connect for students and alumni in 2019. Two years later, when so many activities have transitioned to a virtual format, the ability to connect with fellow Bulldogs digitally is more important than ever. The platform is exclusive to members of the Butler community, and it allows for students to connect with alumni who want to help students reach their career goals and find success after graduating. Serving as a database of engaged alumni, it is also an avenue for peer-to-peer connections to be made among alumni who are looking to build their own networks.

Farber is a frequent user of Bulldogs Connect and has explored many areas of the platform. He says he likes the layout of Bulldogs Connect, and he shared that the Communities feature makes it easy to see where people live. When it comes to sending that first message to an alumni user, “Don’t be nervous at all,” he says. “Just ask them about their job and things you may need to know for the future. People like to talk.”

Finding himself on the receiving end of those messages from students, Jung agrees. “Butler alumni who are signed up for Bulldogs Connect have already shown an interest in helping,” he says. “Go reach out!”

Bulldogs Connect is essentially a database of alumni who have already raised their hands to help students. Their profiles show everything you’d see on LinkedIn, such as professional experience and education, but also list specific areas in which Bulldogs are willing to help Butler students and fellow alumni navigate their own career journeys. These areas of assistance include finding job opportunities, reviewing resumes, advising about graduate school, and more. The difference between LinkedIn and Bulldogs Connect, Jung says, is that the people on Bulldogs Connect signed up because they want to engage with students. Jung’s LinkedIn inbox is full of solicitations, but a message from Bulldogs Connect never goes unread.

With a catalogue full of dedicated alumni who want to share their experience and expertise, there’s also an opportunity for alumni to make peer-to-peer connections to build their professional networks. They can leverage their Butler alumni community while navigating a career change or considering graduate school.

Zach Rodenbarger ’11 joined Bulldogs Connect when the platform first launched. He was working with startups on forecasting and building their financial models. When he heard about Bulldogs Connect, he thought, They’re trying something new. Let’s see if it works. He began using the platform to find other Butler graduates working in the finance industry.

“It was great to be able to find alumni in specific industries that I could ask questions of and who could support me in my business endeavors,” he says. “It was nice to have a linking connection (Butler), and that we understood the same industry, but had Butler to start the conversation.”

Like Farber, Rodenbarger also connected with Jung through Bulldogs Connect. They became close professional contacts and met regularly before the pandemic eliminated their in-person meetings. Jung was able to advise Rodenbarger on marketing strategies for his work with Selfless.ly, a software company that Rodenbarger ultimately joined. Selfless.ly helps businesses engage their employees in giving back to the community.

Rodenbarger and Jung agree that alumni on Bulldogs Connect are likely to be more responsive to messages because of the shared connection to Butler. If you receive a message on LinkedIn, you would have to visit a person’s profile to see that you are both Bulldogs. “This is already filtered for you,” Rodenbarger says.

Bulldogs Connect is available to current students and Butler alumni. A partnership between the Office of Career and Professional Success and the Office of Alumni Relations and Engagement, Bulldogs Connect is a cutting-edge tool that brings alumni and students together to help build networks, find mentors, and create pathways for life after Butler. Whether you’re looking for a job, career advice, information about your new city, or volunteer opportunities, Bulldogs Connect is the place to start. Once you’re logged in, take a peek around. Join the communities that interest you, and start connecting. Butler students and alumni can join here.

Butler bulldog statue
Student-Centered

Bulldogs Connect: The Online Network for Butler Students and Alumni

Since 2019, alumni on the platform have been raising their hands to help students and fellow grads

Duane Leatherman and students

Family For Life

Rachel Stotts

from Winter 2021

Duane Leatherman

In 1989, Professor Duane Leatherman and his soon-to-be-wife, Linnéa Anderson ’75, sat together in a dark room in Residential College (ResCo) trying to imagine what it would be like to live there with students. They couldn’t have known it would be the beginning of a 30-year adventure as Faculty-in-Residence (FIR), living with and caring for their beloved “Butler kids.”

In March 2020, Duane couldn’t have known how much life was about to change...again. In New York City, planning to attend the BIG EAST Tournament and enjoy a Broadway show, he and the rest of the Butler contingent learned that the Tournament was canceled and they were heading back to Indy, where a stay-at-home order was imminent and students would not return from Spring Break.

For most faculty members, this meant teaching remotely from their homes. For the Leathermans, it meant their family had left the building.

“I went up and down the hallways seeing all of the stuff that students had on their doors, but there were no students. It was eerie,” Duane recalls.

While the students didn’t come back for the rest of the spring semester, the Leathermans did have some Zoom sessions with the students to talk through the shock of the situation and try to answer questions that the students had.

“They all just wanted to know when it would be over,” says Duane.

Before COVID-19, the Leathermans loved to have students come to their apartment, cramming as many as 40 students into the small space for pizza parties, Insomnia cookies, wings night, pie tastings at Thanksgiving, fresh cookies out of the oven, and faculty dinners. Perhaps most famous is the “Leatherman Lemonade” (shhhh...it’s doctored-up Country Time served from a punch bowl).

Duane Leatherman
Photo from Corey Alvarez ’95 and Eddie Manuszak ’95, taken with Leatherman in the early ’90s

These gatherings—as well as field trips to places like the Landmark for Peace Memorial, the Ovid Butler House, Pacers games, and shows—came to a halt when the pandemic hit. 

This loss of connection is by far the most painful effect of the virus for the Leathermans, says Linnéa. “When President [Geoffrey] Bannister started the FIR program, he told Duane we’d make friends for life, and he was right,” she says. Duane enthusiastically agrees, “We have made family for life.” 

“All of the interconnectedness that was the point of starting this program...that’s the extra piece of fabric that got woven in because of all these people being in the dorms together,” says Linnéa. “When that’s broken, it’s a piece that they can’t have. They have a hole in their cloth.”

Despite what COVID-19 has temporarily taken away, the Leathermans consider their role as FIR and their relationships with the students invaluable. They look forward to the day when they can freely interact with their Butler kids again without the hindrance of masks and limitations on social gatherings. Leatherman Lemonade will flow again.

Duane Leatherman and students
Student-Centered

Family For Life

Duane and Linnéa Leatherman have spent 30 years as Faculty-in-Residence (FIR), building invaluable relationships with Butler students

by Rachel Stotts

from Winter 2021

Read more
Francie & Abby

Fostering Connections—When Dawgs Need It Most

Kendall Mason ’16

from Winter 2021

The year 2020 has taught us many things—most importantly, to expect the unexpected and never take human connection for granted. From maintaining a six-foot separation at Starbucks to tuning in to class via Zoom, all students have faced navigating the “new normal” on campus. First-year students, however, also face the additional challenge of adjusting to campus life itself.

Brooke Barnett, Dean of the College of Communication (CCOM), sought ways to ease this challenge and over the summer connected with Lecturer in Journalism and Internship Director Scott Bridge ’82, MS ’91 to establish a Peer Mentoring Program within CCOM. “The power of peer relationships is pretty clear in higher education literature,” says Barnett.

Peer-mentoring has been ingrained in Butler’s campus culture since its founding, but with the new formalized process, first-year students are assigned a mentor before arriving on campus in the fall. Similarities like major and hometown are primary considerations when pairing mentors and first-year students. Pairs are encouraged to meet as it makes sense for their schedules and to discuss with one another a range of topics—from which courses to take each semester to general feelings about being far from home.

“It’s important to note that peer-mentors don’t take the place of academic advisors,” Bridge states, “but rather are a chance for students to have conversations with one another and develop relationships that can make the first year at Butler a more comfortable transition.”

Bridge invited students in their second or third year to serve as mentors based on factors like their academic performance, internship experiences, and past involvement in other college activities. Students who chose to become mentors engaged in training modules to provide them with knowledge needed to navigate conversations with their mentee. These modules focused on diversity and inclusion, sexual harassment, and Butler’s Career and Professional Success (CaPS) department.

It’s not uncommon for these pre-assigned mentor/mentee relationships to transform into natural, lasting friendships. This was the case for junior Journalism student Francie Wilson and her mentee, Abby Fostveit. For the first six weeks of the semester, the two met outside of Starbucks for a socially distanced coffee. “We would chat for about an hour a week just about anything from professors I’ve had good relationships with to Spanish language resources,” Wilson says. “Now we just touch base on Zoom and chat about life.”

Bridge looks forward to rolling out a CCOM Professional Mentorship Program in January that will match third-year students with a recent Butler graduate in their desired career field. “CCOM isn’t the only college formalizing a mentorship program,” says Bridge.

The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS), for example, conducts department-based Peer Mentoring Programs. Professor of Anthropology and Folklore Tom Mould explains that his department’s first-year students were paired with a junior or senior, and relationships were established before students got to campus. These LAS mentors help mentees prepare for exams, connect with on-campus organizations, and meet other students with shared interests. Pairs also enjoyed fun, festive activities this semester. “We organized events such as a scavenger hunt around campus and pumpkin carving for Halloween, all of which could be done outside, masked, and socially distanced,” says Mould.

Whether mentor/mentee pairs meet one-on-one through socially distanced events or virtually, the University’s formalized Peer Mentoring Program serves students in the Butler community in extremely valuable ways. The connections built through the Peer Mentoring Program can help students recognize the “home away from home” that is Butler University—even in the unprecedented days of 2020.

 

Photo: Francie Wilson (left) and Abby Fostveit (right)

Francie & Abby
Student-Centered

Fostering Connections—When Dawgs Need It Most

Peer mentors help first-year Butler students adjust to campus life

by Kendall Mason ’16

from Winter 2021

Read more
Efroymson Diversity Center

Last summer, in a message to the Butler community commemorating Juneteenth, Butler President James Danko called upon the University community to take action in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) at Butler across four key areas: education, organization, behavior, and procedure. Harkening back to Butler’s founding in 1855 by abolitionist attorney Ovid Butler, Danko made a particular point to remind the University community of its founding values.

“Our renewed commitment to our founder’s mission has taken on an even greater sense of urgency this year to ensure all students, faculty, and staff are welcome, respected, and flourishing,” Danko says. “Butler University has a moral and historic imperative to be a leader in addressing issues of racism and social injustice in higher education.”

University leadership recognized that expanding organizational capacity would be required in order to maintain focus on DEI. Thus, DEI has been highlighted as one of the University’s seven strategic priorities for Butler Beyond, with the goal of creating an intentionally diverse, equitable, and inclusive learning and working environment. The University’s DEI efforts will be led by Provost Kathryn Morris, Vice President for Student Affairs Frank E. Ross III, and a new yet-to-be-named Vice President for Human Resources who will also sit on the University Cabinet.

A number of important initiatives are already up and running since President Danko’s Juneteenth call to action, and others are in the works. Here are a few of the ways Butler’s strategic focus on DEI is taking shape.

Efroymson Diversity Center
Efroymson Diversity Center

Social Justice and Diversity
In August 2020, a Social Justice and Diversity (SJD) requirement went into effect as a new addition to the Core Curriculum. Students must take one course in any part of the University that exposes them to critical scholarship on the root causes of marginalization and inequity and how to counter it.

The Department of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
The Department of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion was created in 2019 within the Division of Student Affairs, led by Executive Director Gina Forrest. The department is housed within the Efroymson Diversity Center, which was renovated last year and remains central to the University’s student-focused DEI efforts on campus. The Efroymson Diversity Center is currently working to fill two vacant positions, which will expand its capacity to offer programming and support for students. The International Club is now housed within the space, along with six other student organizations. This year, all incoming students were enrolled in Foundations of DEI, a series of trainings on topics such as Bias and Perception and Inclusive Language.

“I would love to see every student visit the Efroymson Diversity Center at least once during their academic career,” Forrest says. “We are here for everyone. My hope is that every student will feel heard, respected, and that they genuinely belong at Butler, while being open to learning about others.”

Terri Jett
Terri Jett

Hub for Black Affairs and Community Engagement
In October, the University announced its plans to launch a Hub for Black Affairs and Community Engagement in partnership with Professor of Political Science Terri Jett as Faculty Director. 

The Hub will serve as an institutional command center to address systemic racism and Black oppression. As Faculty Director, Jett will be focusing on the lives and experiences of the Black community at Butler and creating opportunities for engagement with the greater Black Indianapolis community. She will also serve as Senior Advisor to the President in this capacity. The Hub will advance a number of initiatives reaching across all aspects of University life, including establishing Black faculty and staff affinity groups, supporting Black students, and inviting Black intellectuals to be in-residence to conduct workshops, trainings, and seminars for Black students and others to learn from and interact with these important role models. The Hub will also include an Advisory Group that will help determine the priorities of the Hub and be responsive to the administration in efforts to address the experiences of Black students, faculty, and staff at Butler.

“The Hub is anchored in the abolitionist roots of Butler University and will elevate and center the disparate Black intellectual voice and experience that has often been marginalized and yet is critical for the institution to be at the forefront of our heightened awareness and shifting responsibilities, considering what we are experiencing and witnessing,” Jett says.

The Old National Bank Center for Business Excellence
The Old National Bank Center for Business Excellence at Butler University (ONB Center) was established in 2017 through a $5 million gift from Old National Bank to connect privately held companies with the resources and support they need to succeed. 

In August, the ONB Center announced an initiative aimed at strengthening and supporting businesses owned by underrepresented groups throughout Indiana. The initiative was inspired in part by a conversation between Butler student intern Victor Aguilar and ONB Center Director Mark McFatridge. The overriding goal of the initiative is to play a role in reducing the wealth gap of underrepresented groups.

Efroymson Diversity Center
Student-Centered

A Strategic Imperative: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

As Butler takes action in promoting DEI, a number of important initiatives are already up and running

from Winter 2021

Read more
Madisyn Smith

The Value of Support

Meredith Sauter ’12

from Winter 2021

Senior and first-generation college student Madisyn Smith knew when looking at colleges that she wanted to stay close to home in Central Indiana and wanted to major in Pharmacy. After researching colleges, Butler University ended up being the perfect fit academically, but proved to be more of a challenge financially.

“I am paying for college completely through scholarships and loans, without any financial support from my family, ” Smith says. “Scholarships are critical for me.”

She received a Butler academic scholarship, which helped to cover the majority of her tuition costs. She also received assistance through the Butler Emergency Assistance Fund when her car broke down and she couldn’t get to her Pharmacy rotations. She owes all of that support to Butler’s Office of Financial Aid.

“I’ve been helped tremendously by the Office,” she says. “They have answered hundreds of my emails. And whenever they saw a scholarship they thought I’d qualify for, they’d email me and let me know that it was available.”

It’s that level of personalized attention that Madisyn says makes all the difference. And she’s found it not only in the Office of Financial Aid, but all across Butler’s campus.

When she got to the end of her third year of college, she realized that Pharmacy wasn’t something she thought she wanted to do for the rest of her life. After talking with Pharmacy faculty and other mentors across campus, she decided to change her major to Entrepreneurship and Innovation within the Lacy School of Business.

“It was a very big change, but after receiving so much support, I decided I needed to follow my heart and choose what would make me happy long term.” Smith will graduate in May and hopes to use her degree to eventually pursue her dream of opening and running wedding and event venues.

Outside of academics, Madisyn has also been passionate about helping pave the way for future first-generation students at Butler. With the support of (former) Dean of Students Sally Click, Smith helped start BU First, a network of support to assist first-generation students with guidance and information to help them successfully navigate the college environment.

“For me, everything in college has been trial and error. There’s no one before me who’s made mistakes and could give me advice on how to avoid obstacles, so I hope that BU First can help all those who come after me,” says Smith. “But I wouldn’t trade my experience for anything. I’ve learned and grown so much, and that’s all thanks to the support I’ve had at Butler.”

Madisyn Smith
Student-Centered

The Value of Support

Madisyn Smith helps pave the way for future first-generation students at Butler

by Meredith Sauter ’12

from Winter 2021

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Kobe Mosley

Making His Dream a Reality

Meredith Sauter ’12

from Winter 2021

Sophomore Kobe Mosley first heard about Butler University when he attended a college fair in his home state of Kentucky. He stopped at Butler’s table and spoke about his interest in Journalism and his love of sports. He learned that Butler offered a Sports Media degree in their College of Communication (CCOM). “I didn’t know that was even a possible major, so once I heard about it, I was hooked,” Mosley says.

He applied, both for admission to Butler and for a Morton-Finney Diversity Scholar Award, a scholarship for students who have taken a leadership role promoting diversity and inclusion in their schools or communities. He was accepted to Butler and invited to interview for the scholarship. Knowing that he would not be able to attend college without a substantial amount of scholarships, this day was especially important to Mosley.

After interviewing, Mosley received a $10,000-per-year Morton-Finney Diversity Scholar Award, and along with other scholarships and aid, was able to make his dream of attending Butler a reality.

Mosley started his first year at Butler in fall 2019. He immediately got involved on campus, participating in College Mentors for Kids and joining the Black Student Union. While he says that COVID-19 has disrupted his time in college (Mosley elected a remote learning environment for his sophomore year), he still finds ways to stay involved on campus, even living hundreds of miles away. He’s now a sports writer for The Butler Collegian and the Secretary of the Black Student Union. He’s also working alongside CCOM’s Dean, Brooke Barnett, and other CCOM students to start a new group for students from underrepresented communities in the College.

While he still has two years left at Butler, Mosley thinks, as of now, he wants to be a sports writer, either for a news organization or a sports team. In the meantime, he’s continuing to hone his writing skills and learn more about the industry.

“It’s been a great experience so far—Butler has a lot to offer,” says Mosley. “All of my professors have been so engaged and have shown that they will do anything they can to help me succeed. I’m their number one priority.”

Kobe Mosley
Student-Centered

Making His Dream a Reality

With support from scholarships, Kobe Mosley immediately got involved on campus when he started his first year at Butler in fall 2019

by Meredith Sauter ’12

from Winter 2021

Read more
Esports Camps
Student-Centered

Nerd Street Gamers Partners with Butler University to Host Virtual Esports Winter Camps

BY

PUBLISHED ON Dec 07 2020

PHILADELPHIA & INDIANAPOLIS (December 7, 2020)—Nerd Street Gamers, the national network of esports facilities and events dedicated to powering competitive opportunities for gamers, and Butler University have partnered to host virtual esports winter camps. With sessions from December 14 through January 8, Camp Localhost gives gamers ages 10-18 the opportunity to participate in a week-long online esports camp focusing on a variety of video games, including Overwatch, Rocket League, and Fortnite. These boot camps will be held through Discord, where campers will be virtually overseen by a coach, who will run games, drills, and matches throughout the duration of the week.

Camp Localhost coaches will provide a structured environment for participants to learn about the fundamentals of competitive gaming, map and game strategy, team dynamics, and effective communication skills. In addition to improving their gaming abilities, campers will take away various skills throughout the sessions that they can apply to other aspects of their lives, including teamwork, communication, and the ability to stay calm under pressure. Nerd Street Gamers is providing the logistics for the clinics, including professional instructors and camp programming. Butler Esports will also provide coaches, along with communications and recruitment of players.

“After a successful series of summer camps with Butler University, we are thrilled to continue our partnership with them into the winter,” said Nerd Street Gamers CEO and Founder John Fazio. “In an ever-changing environment, we are proud to offer safe and competitive virtual opportunities for amatuer gamers. Our partnership with Butler University allows us to engage and connect aspiring players in an online esports camp, while fostering relationships with a prominent collegiate esports league.”

Since 2017, Butler University’s Butler Esports group has been competing in intercollegiate esports, including in the BIG EAST Conference. Its administration brings this experience to Camp Localhost to empower students to truly become ingrained in the games. Every session will allow campers to scrimmage, practice their skills, and then evaluate their performance with structured, individualized feedback from instructors. The camps will also include daily seminars from industry experts, professional players, and more.

“Esports continue to thrive during the pandemic,” said Butler University’s Director of Esports and Gaming Technology Eric Kammeyer. “This partnership with Nerd Street Gamers allows us to integrate coaching and mentorship opportunities from our passionate collegiate esports players while fostering the next generation of gamers who are aspiring to play at the next level. We are excited to build on the foundations created during the esports camps this past summer to deliver an elevated experience for the participants.”

 

When:

  • December 14–18, 2020: Rocket League, Ages 15-18
  • December 14–18, 2020: Fortnite, Ages 10-14
  • January 4–8, 2021: Overwatch, Ages 15-18
  • January 4–8, 2021: Fortnite, Ages 10-14

 

Cost: $60

 

To register for Camp Localhost presented by Butler Esports, visit nerdstgamers.com/butler.

 

About Nerd Street Gamers
Nerd Street Gamers is a national network of esports facilities and events dedicated to powering competitive opportunities for gamers. The company promotes greater access to the esports industry, laying a national framework for esports talent development and high-quality gaming tournaments. NSG has received backing from Five Below, Comcast, SeventySix Capital, Elevate Ventures, and angel investor George Miller.

For more information, follow @nerdstgamers on Twitter or visit nerdstgamers.com.

About Butler University
Butler University is a nationally recognized comprehensive university encompassing six colleges: Arts, Business, Communication, Education, Liberal Arts & Sciences, and Pharmacy & Health Sciences. Approximately 4,600 undergraduate and 800 graduate students are enrolled at Butler, representing 45 states and 30 countries. More than 75 percent of Butler students will participate in some form of internship, and Butler students have had significant success after graduation, as demonstrated by the University’s 98 percent placement rate within six months of graduation. The University was recently listed as the No. 1 regional university in the Midwest, according to U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings, in addition to being included in The Princeton Review’s annual “best colleges” guidebook.

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