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Butler Campus in the Fall

Butler Ranked No. 1 in the Midwest For the First Time by U.S. News & World Report

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Sep 10 2018

For the first time in its history, Butler University has moved into a tie for the No. 1 Regional University in the Midwest, according to the 2019 U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings released today.

After eight years of being ranked second in the Midwest Regional Universities category, Butler tied for first place with Creighton University, thanks to its high percentage of small classes (52 percent of classes have fewer than 20 students), first-year students who were in the Top 25 percent of their high school class (76 percent), and alumni giving rates (22 percent—higher than any of the 165 schools in the Midwest region).

“Butler is an innovative leader in education,” President James Danko says. “This prestigious ranking affirms that Butler is creating learning experiences for students that support their success and well-being—both during their undergraduate experience and throughout their lives.”

Butler was also ranked the No. 1 Most Innovative School among Midwest Regional Universities for the fourth straight year, as well as the top school for its commitment to undergraduate teaching.

“Butler’s recognition for exceptional teaching is particularly rewarding, since this is determined by leaders at our peer institutions,” Danko says. “To have our faculty highlighted in this manner is a testament to their outstanding work.”

Butler was also listed among the best schools in six out of eight academic programs that U.S. News ranks. The lists for first-year experiences, internships/co-ops, senior capstone, service learning, study abroad, and undergraduate research, all categories that education experts, including staff members of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, believe lead to student success, all included Butler.

Here’s some more information on these categories:

  • First-year experiences are seminars or other programs that bring small groups of students together with faculty or staff on a regular basis.
  • More than 90 percent of Butler students have at least one internship before they graduate.
  • Senior capstone are culminating experiences that ask students nearing the end of their college years to create a project of some sort that integrates what they’ve learned.
  • In service-learning programs, volunteering in the community is an instructional strategy and relates to what happens in class.
  • Study abroad programs involve substantial academic work and considerable interaction between the student and the culture.
  • Undergraduate research gives students the opportunity to do intensive and self-directed research or creative work that results in an original scholarly paper or other product that can be presented on or off campus.

Administrators at regional universities and colleges were surveyed about peer institutions within their regions. The colleges and universities named on the list were cited most often by college presidents, provosts, and admissions deans who were asked to identify up to 15 schools.

Regional universities offer a full range of undergraduate programs and some master's programs, but few doctoral programs. These rankings are split into four regions: North, South, Midwest, and West. U.S. News also ranks National Universities, National Liberal Arts Colleges, and Regional Colleges in the North, South, Midwest, and West.

Media contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications

Campus in Spring

Butler Makes Princeton Review's 'The Best 384 Colleges' For First Time

BY Marc Allan

PUBLISHED ON Aug 08 2018

Butler University is one of the nation’s best institutions for undergraduate education, according to The Princeton Review, which has included Butler in its 2019 annual "best colleges" guidebook for the first time.

“The Butler community takes great pride in being recognized by the highly-respected Princeton Review for the exceptional education we provide our students,” said President Jim Danko. “It is particularly rewarding to have an independent, external endorsement of the effectiveness of Butler’s collaborative, student-centered educational approach, one that is supported by outstanding and caring faculty.”

Butler is one of five schools that the New York-based education services company added to the roster of colleges it profiles in the 2019 The Best 384 Colleges (Penguin Random House/Princeton Review Books). The guide is now available.

Robert Franek, Editor-in-Chief of The Princeton Review, said, “We are truly pleased to add Butler to our widely used college guide, now in its 27th year. Only about 15 percent of the four-year colleges in the nation are in this book. In our opinion, these are ‘the crème of the crop’ institutions for undergraduates in America."

Franek said Butler was chosen for 2019 based on three areas: a high regard for its academic programs and other offerings, institutional data, and visits to the University as well as feedback from students, educators, and parents.

The annual "best colleges" book has two-page profiles on each school. Butler's pages note:

  • Butler’s student-to-faculty ratio, teachers collaborating with students on research and professional endeavors, and a core curriculum that pushes students out of their comfort zones, and allows students to explore interests outside of their major, creating “an atmosphere of driven students.”
  • Professors who support student ideas and make modifications to lectures to support student interests.
  • Student life "is completely sustainable on-campus,” which means that students typically stay there for studying, food, and for socializing. On days with good weather, students can be found out and about on campus.

In addition, the book contains 62 ranking lists of "top 20 schools" in individual categories.

The Princeton Review tallied the rankings for the 2019 edition based on its surveys of 138,000 students (average 359 per campus) attending the 384 colleges in the book in 2017-2018 and/or the previous two school years.

The survey asks students 84 questions about their school's academics, administration, student body, and themselves. The format uses a five-point Likert scale to convert qualitative student assessments into quantitative data for school-to-school comparisons. More information on the ranking methodology is at

The Princeton Review does not rank the colleges in the book hierarchically, 1 to 384, either on academics (the Company believes all 384 schools are academically outstanding) or on any other subject.

The school profiles in the book also feature rating scores (from 60 to 99) in several categories including Financial Aid, Fire Safety, and Green: a rating based on the colleges' environmental commitments. The Princeton Review tallies these scores primarily based on analyses of institutional data the Company obtains from the schools.


Media contact:
Marc Allan MFA '18
News Manager

Campus in Spring

Butler Makes Princeton Review's 'The Best 384 Colleges' For First Time

Butler is one of nation’s best institutions for education, according to The Princeton Review.

Aug 08 2018 Read more

Hi, I’m Blue!

Well, I guess I am Butler Blue IV, but you can call me Blue. I am Butler’s new mascot-in-training!

I was born the lone male in a litter of three on October 30, 2019, at Fall Creek Place Animal Clinic. My vet, Dr. Kurt Phillips ’92, delivered my two sisters and me. Then I went home with my breeders, Jodi and Cameron Madaj, and I have been living with them for the last 12 weeks while growing into this bundle of brown and white rolls you see today.

Oh, and don’t worry, I already bleed Butler Blue. I stuck my head out of the incubator at two weeks old to watch the Men’s Basketball team play on television. I even started barking when the announcer said the rival team’s name.

I was born for this.

I’d love to meet you! My on-campus debut for students, faculty, and staff will be on Friday, January 24. And later that evening, I’ll make my public debut at Hinkle Fieldhouse just before the Butler Men’s Basketball game against Marquette. Be sure you get to your seats early.

For the next few months, I’ll be training, interning, and following around Uncle Trip (Butler Blue III) to learn what it takes to represent Butler. Then, I’ll take over full-time mascot duties after Trip retires at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year.

Other than all of that, I’m looking forward to getting settled at my new home, too. I moved in with my parents, Evan ’16 and Kennedy Krauss, about a week ago, but it feels like I’ve known them forever. They even got to be there when I was born, and they have visited me every week over the last couple of months.

I hope to see you all on Friday. I’ve been waiting my whole life to meet you! I’m so honored to be your next Butler Bulldog.


Go Dawgs!






Butler Blue IV
Butler University’s Mascot-in-Training

P.S.: Please follow me on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram at @TheButlerBlue. Two words: Puppy Pics.

P.P.S.: I love you.

Blue IV

Hi, I’m Blue!

I am your new mascot-in-training. I can’t wait to meet you. 


Butler Ranked No.1 in Midwest for Second Straight Year by U.S. News & World Report


PUBLISHED ON Sep 08 2019

For the second consecutive year, Butler University has been named the No. 1 Regional University in the Midwest, according to the 2020 U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings released today

Butler also ranked as the No. 1 Most Innovative School for the fifth straight year, the No.1 Best College for Veterans, and within the top-10 schools for Undergraduate Teaching among Midwest Regional Universities.

“I am pleased that our ranking reflects the high quality of education we provide at Butler University,” President James Danko says. “In addition to a highly-engaged educational experience, thanks to our outstanding faculty, we continue to underscore the importance of innovation, which creates an environment that both supports our students and challenges them to succeed.”

In addition to its strong position in the Midwest, Butler ranked within the top-20 among nationally-ranked schools (such as Harvard, Duke, and Stanford Universities) in three key areas identified by U.S. News as critical in providing students with the best possible undergraduate experience: first-year experience (No. 13), senior capstone experience (No. 18), and study abroad opportunities (No. 19).

“We are especially honored that this year’s rankings distinguish Butler University as among some of the most prestigious in the country,” Danko says. “I am so proud of our students, faculty, and staff, whose dedication to excellence has led us to earn this great recognition.”

The U.S. News first-year experience category recognizes schools that help new students feel connected well beyond orientation week. Butler’s First Year Seminar is required for all new students and is taken in a two-semester sequence. There are no exceptions, as all new students reflect on questions about self, community, and the world. 

Senior capstone experiences give students nearing the end of their time at college the chance to create a culminating project drawing on what they’ve learned over several years, such as collaborative research between Butler students and faculty, or recitals put on by graduating art students. 

And the study abroad category highlights universities that allow students to complete a substantial amount of credit hours outside the U.S., while also immersing themselves in new cultures. At Butler, about 40 percent of students travel abroad by the time they graduate, making the University ninth in the nation for undergraduate participation.

Butler also ranked just outside the top-20 on a national level for its focus on co-ops and internships (No. 21) and service learning (No. 23). Schools in the internship category either require or encourage students to apply what they’ve learned in class to a real-world setting, like the more than 90 percent of Butler students who complete at least one internship before graduation.

Universities in the service learning category require students to volunteer in the community as part of their coursework. Through Butler's Indianapolis Community Requirement (ICR), all students take at least one course that involves active engagement with the Indianapolis area.

For undergraduate research and creative projects, Butler ranked No. 59 in the nation for the opportunities it provides students to complete self-directed, formal research, often under the mentorship of a faculty member.

For each of these national categories, U.S. News surveyed higher education leaders from across the country, asking college presidents, chief academic officers, and deans of admissions to nominate up to 15 schools they felt best embraced each type of program. The final rankings include the 20 universities that received the most nominations in each category. 

“It is quite gratifying that our peer academic leaders recognize the quality of a Butler education which is distinguished by the teaching and learning that occurs inside our classrooms, and is further enhanced by the rich experiences offered outside,” Provost Kate Morris says. “I am proud of the high-quality education and experience our students receive thanks to our outstanding faculty and staff.”


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications


Butler Ranked No.1 in Midwest for Second Straight Year by U.S. News & World Report

The University also ranks within the nation’s Top-20 schools for programs in three key areas.

Sep 08 2019 Read more

Meet Butler’s Bulldog Beauty Queens and Kings

By Sarah Bahr

 Butler University’s beauty queens and kings lick the runway, sniff purses for cookies, and do more slobbering than Snapchatting.

But these bulldogs are no pampered pets, though some of them have the (three-dresser!) wardrobes of international pop stars.

They’re there to win.

More than 100 bulldogs are expected to compete for accolades such as “Most Beautiful” and “Best Mean Mug” at Butler’s 18th annual Bulldog Beauty Contest on Saturday, Sept. 29. The competition kicks off at 9:30 A.M. in the west end of the Hinkle Fieldhouse parking lot, and is expected to last around an hour. Admission is free for both spectators and competitors.

The contestants come from all over the country, Butler University Director of External Relations Michael Kaltenmark, who’s emceed the contest for the past 18 years, said, as Butler alumni return to their alma mater for the Homecoming Week kickoff event.

The contest has ballooned from the 50 to 100 people who attended the first event — most, Kaltenmark said, who were tailgating in the Hinkle parking lot and “happened to see us making a bunch of noise and holding bulldog puppies in the air” — to the nearly 2,500 spectators who turned up last year.

A panel of five judges — which in the past has included local celebrities such as Indianapolis Star Butler beat writer David Woods and Fox 59 chief meteorologist Brian Wilkes — selects the top dog in each category.

This year’s event features seven categories, though each dog can only enter two: “Most Beautiful Bulldog,” “Best Mean Mug,” “Best Dressed Bulldog,” “Best Bulldog/Human Tandem,” “Best Bulldog Trick,” “Most Butler Spirit,” and “Mr. & Mrs. Bulldog Congeniality.” A winner and runner-up trophy are awarded in each division.

The category champs will then vie for the top prize, “Best in Show,” which earns the winning dog bragging rights, a trophy, and a year’s supply of dog food from City Dogs Grocery in Broad Ripple.

To impress the crowd — whose “huge laughs” and “big cheers” wield an outsized influence on the judges — a dog must have not only looks, but personality, Kaltenmark said.

Kurt Phillips, the official veterinarian of the Butler Blue Live Mascot Program and longtime judge of the Bulldog Beauty Contest, said judging isn’t a science.

“It’s whatever makes us smile, or makes us laugh, or makes the audience go crazy,” he said.

So if you’ve got a French, American, or English bulldog raring to roll over, don a French Fry costume, or strut the runway, you can show up on Saturday and throw your dog’s hat into the ring.

Just don’t try to backdoor your beagle in. 

“We used to have a ‘Wannabe Bulldog’ category,” Kaltenmark said. “But we had to do away with it when the contest got so big. Now it’s bulldogs only.”


Step 1: Choose a Costume

Things you might see this weekend outside Hinkle Fieldhouse: Minnie Mouse licking a Chipotle burrito. A peacock sniffing a bulldozer.

You never know what’ll turn up, Kaltenmark said. It seems like people get more creative every year.

People have dressed their bulldogs in lobster suits — then donned a matching hat and claws. They’ve affixed a lion’s mane to their dog’s neck and hoisted the dog-cub over their head like Simba. Wrestled them into a shark suit. Made them up like Cleopatra.

Kaltenmark’s favorite? One man donned a red hoodie, placed his bulldog in a milk crate attached to the handlebars of a BMX bike, and covered him in a towel so he looked like E.T.

One entrant, Jodi Madaj, who owns Butler Blue III’s sister Phoebe, even roped Kaltenmark’s sons, Miles, 3, and Everett, 7, into participating in the “Best Bulldog-Human Tandem” category.

“My sons would walk these dogs up on stage in their Han Solo and Chewbacca costumes with Trip’s sister Phoebe dressed as Princess Leia, and it was too much for the judges to handle,” Kaltenmark said.

Madaj, who’s now taken home three category trophies, doesn’t shirk from enlisting strangers in her schemes, either.

When she was walking through the Butler bookstore in 2011, one employee was “getting a little cranky” about one of her bulldogs, Daphne, she said. The logical next step?

“I talked him into being Prince Charming, complete with tux, pillow, and glass slipper, in that year’s contest,” Madaj said. “Phoebe was Cinderella, and they won ‘Best Human-Dog Tandem.’”

So where does one buy a bulldog costume?

Not at Party City or Walmart, Kaltenmark said.

“We know what costume is popular at Target each year because three to five dogs show up wearing it,” Kaltenmark said. “The best costumes are either handmade or pieced together. You can’t just run out, buy a Halloween costume, and slap it on your dog and expect to win.”


Step 2: Master the Mean Mug


A bulldog can be a winner without wide eyes, wrinkly fur, or floppy ears.

“The ‘Best Mean Mug’ category is for the ugliest bulldog at the contest,” Kaltenmark said. “Not all bulldogs are good looking.”

Doug Welks, an English Bulldog breeder who’s participated in the event for the past decade, once brought a green-mohawked puppy, Mojo, who took home the pugnacious prize.

“He was a real sweetheart,” Welks said. “He just looked mean, like a ferocious teddy bear.”

But some bulldogs really are, well, curmudgeonly canines.

Butler alums Kyle Schwipps, 30, and his wife Alicia, 29, entered their 4-year-old bulldog, Beauford, last year.

While Beauford’s snarfing and scowling weren’t affronting enough to take top prize, Kyle Schwipps said his peevish pooch really is a grumpy old man at heart.

“We treated him like an only child for three years — we took him everywhere with us,” he said. “Then we had our son, Grayson, and he got thrown on the back burner.”

“Now he’s mad all the time because he’s not the center of attention anymore.”


Step 3: Play the Cute Card

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the cutest bulldog of them all?

Bow in her hair, a doe-eyed, tan-and-white bulldog in a blue tutu peers at the crowd with quarter-sized, glistening eyes that put Fiona the hippo’s floppy folds of flesh, stubby arms, and slack-tongued grin to shame.

“The ‘Cutest’ category is hilarious because everybody throws their dog in,” Kaltenmark said. “It takes the longest to judge because everyone thinks their bulldog is cute.”

Puppies, unsurprisingly, have a leg up on their more mature competitors.

“The younger dogs are so stinkin’ cute that they’re literally showstoppers,” he said. “But it’s tough for them to repeat as champs.”

The best part? On Saturday morning, the Hinkle parking lot becomes a “quasi-Bulldog petting zoo” for spectators, Kaltenmark said.

“We’ve got around 100 bulldogs milling about behind the stage,” he said. “People who want to pet them can walk right up, snap a picture.”


A Loveable Loser


One dog, for the past nine years, has been neither ugly nor beautiful enough to get the judges’ attention. Like elevator music, he’s been lurking in the background, neither loved nor loathed.

Wilberforce, an English bulldog owned by 2004 Butler grads Daniel Pulliam and his wife, Noelle, entered every year until his death in February at age 9. But he never got so much as a “Best Mean Mug” title.

“They got all their kids involved, but they never took home the trophy,” Kaltenmark said. “It was heartbreaking.”

Daniel Pulliam said Wilberforce — Wilber for short —- enjoyed cheese, sunbathing on the couch, and playing with his buddy Butler Blue II.

“He was kind of like Brain on ‘Pinky and the Brain,’” Pulliam said. “He was pretty laid back, like ‘What are we gonna do today?’”

Daniel and Noelle had entered Wilber in the contest every year since 2009.

“He was a puppy then, so that year was our best chance,” Pulliam said. “But we didn’t win.”

But then the Pulliams’ children entered the equation, renewing their hopes. They entered their 6-month-old daughter alongside Wilber in 2011 in the “Best Bulldog-Human Tandem” category.

“Having a bulldog and a small child is a good way to impress the judges — or so we thought,” Pulliam said.

Alas, no dice. But the Pulliams really thought they had a chance in 2017, when they entered their four children alongside Wilber as characters from “PAW Patrol.”

“It wasn’t enough,” Pulliam said. “The competition was really tough.”

Kaltenmark is considering calling the Pulliams back up to the stage this year to present Wilber with a posthumous lifetime achievement award. Though they no longer own a bulldog, they’re still planning on attending, Pulliam said.

If you too want to watch but can’t make it in person, Butler will be live streaming the contest on Blue III’s Facebook page.

And if you do want to enter, Kaltenmark said those five seconds of fame are an equal opportunity — Butler’s never had a repeat “Best in Show” winner.

“A good costume, plus preparation, plus a good dog, plus kids the past few years is a formula that’s done really well,” he said.


Bulldog Beauty Contest
Student LifeCampus

Meet Butler’s Bulldog Beauty Queens and Kings

With more than 100 bulldogs competing, the Bulldog Beauty Contest is the cutest pageant around.   

Rendering of New Sciences Building
AcademicsButler BeyondCampus

Butler Board of Trustees Approves $100 Million Sciences Upgrade, Largest Investment in Butler’s Future

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Jun 13 2019



INDIANAPOLIS—A new sciences complex is set to take shape on Butler University’s campus, as the Board of Trustees approved the project during their June meeting.

The $100 million renovation and expansion is the largest investment ever by the Trustees in Butler’s future. The project includes new high-tech classrooms designed to promote learning by doing, labs that mimic the set-up at top research companies, and work spaces meant to encourage cross-disciplinary collaboration. The facility will reflect the interdisciplinary nature of science, and eliminate labs designed for a single purpose. Classroom spaces will enable faculty to step away from the podium and move among students in a more hands-on approach to instruction.

“We have outstanding faculty, we have outstanding students, we have outstanding programs, and this project will allow us to take all of that to another level,” says Jay Howard, Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, who was also part of the project’s original planning committee in 2011. “Science is an ever-changing discipline, and now we will have the flexible facilities to lead the field into the future.”

Phases I and II of the project are expected to start very soon, with a predicted 18-month timeline. To date, $27.5 million has been raised for the project. The goal is to raise $42 million of the $100 million total cost through philanthropic support.

Thus far, major donations have come from the Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation, Frank Levinson ’75, Craig Fenneman ’71 and Mary Stover-Fenneman, Lynne Zydowsky ’81, Josh Smiley, Katie and Len Betley, Lou and Laura Glazer, Jane and Robert Wildman, and Dick and Billie Lou Wood.

The project will start with the creation of a connector building--linking Gallahue Hall and the Holcomb Building--that will house classrooms, study areas, and research labs dedicated to Chemistry, Astronomy, Physics, Engineering, and Psychology. The Phase I expansion will add nearly 44,000 square feet, as well as a nearly 13,200 square-foot atrium. This additional space will create a sciences corridor to house all of Butler’s undergraduate sciences programs in a central complex.

“This is a significant and historic step forward as Butler continues to transform education for the needs of students and employers in the 21st century,” President Jim Danko says.

“Our investment in the sciences, coupled with our new business school facility, provides our campus with the world-class infrastructure necessary to support critical skill development integrating business, science, innovation, and technology. These investments are also part of Butler’s commitment to the Central Indiana region as we strive to attract, retain, and develop the talent necessary for our community’s collective success.”


A net importer

The vast majority of Butler science graduates choose to stay in Indiana after graduation. In 2016, for example, 63 percent of science graduates remained in Indiana.

“Butler is a net importer of scientific talent,” Howard says. “Rather than be a part of the brain drain problem, we are actually importing talent to Indiana.”

Butler has also long been a leader in preparing women for STEM careers. For many years, the majority of Butler’s science majors have been women. Butler also has more Lilly Scholars than most institutions of a similar size, which speaks to the quality of its programs.

With new facilities, Butler’s ability to prepare homegrown talent for STEM careers in the region will only grow.

“We are honored to support the continued growth of the sciences program at Butler, which is a legacy grantee of our foundation and an institution that our founder, Richard M. Fairbanks, strongly supported,” says Claire Fiddian-Green, president and CEO of the Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation. “Among our foundation’s focus areas is supporting Indianapolis’ thriving life sciences sector and the STEM workforce to support it. Fueling a robust pipeline of science students at Butler helps to advance those goals.”

To prepare students for careers in a discipline that is evolving all the time, the new sciences complex needed a design that could change with new discoveries and new educational approaches.

Lab spaces will be flexible, students and faculty will work side-by-side, and areas of research will be grouped together to maximize collaboration. In addition to visiting other universities’ facilities for ideas, the planning team visited Eli Lilly, Roche, and Corteva to get an idea of what labs at cutting-edge research companies look like.

“Scientific inquiry demands collaboration,” Provost Kate Morris says. “Exciting work is happening at the intersection of multiple disciplines.  The design of the new facility encourages this work by creating space that breaks down the traditional barriers between areas of study.”


Endless possibilities

Phase II of the project will include renovating and repurposing the Holcomb Building, which will be vacated by the Lacy School of Business as it moves into its new building opening this fall. Phase III will involve a complete renovation of Gallahue Hall, which currently houses several science departments and has not been renovated since its construction in 1973.

Over the last 10 years, enrollment in the sciences at Butler has flourished, growing more than 70 percent. In addition, every student at Butler takes a science course because of the core curriculum.

With new facilities will come a plethora of new opportunities. New programs are being explored, such as Neuroscience and Data Science. Butler is already home of the country’s largest Undergraduate Research Conference, and now, the cross-disciplinary lab spaces will inevitably lead to new research projects. 

“I think it is hard to overstate the importance of this project, as it will prepare Butler students for the future and position us as a premiere undergraduate institution for the sciences,” says Morris.


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications
914-815-5656 (cell)

Rendering of New Sciences Building
AcademicsButler BeyondCampus

Butler Board of Trustees Approves $100 Million Sciences Upgrade, Largest Investment in Butler’s Future

Phases I and II of the project are expected to start very soon, with a predicted 18-month timeline.

Jun 13 2019 Read more
Chatham Tap

Chatham Tap to Fill Vacant Restaurant Space on Campus


PUBLISHED ON Sep 12 2019

INDIANAPOLIS—Chatham Tap, a family-friendly restaurant and pub with two locations in the Indianapolis area, will soon open a third location on the Butler University campus. The addition will fill the space at the intersection of Sunset Avenue and Lake Road, which previously housed Scotty’s Brewhouse before the chain closed in July 2019.

Chatham Tap opened its first pub 12 years ago on Mass Ave. Three years after that, a second location launched in downtown Fishers.

“And we have been searching ever since for the right place to open a third one,” says David Pentzien, one of three Chatham Tap owners.

Pentzien says the restaurant is designed to feel like a friendly neighborhood pub. Rooted in English culture, it caters especially to soccer fans looking for a place to watch their favorite games.

“We intend to warm up the space so you get the true feeling of an English pub,” he says.

But with an extensive offering of craft and import beers, along with a menu focused on a wide range of sandwiches and starters, Chatham Tap draws all kinds of guests through its doors. Offerings also include soup, salad, award-winning wings, pizza, burgers, and the house speciality—fish and chips.

Bruce Arick, the Vice President of Finance & Administration at Butler, says the owners of Chatham Tap have been delightful to work with throughout the whole process.

“We are excited to welcome Chatham Tap to our campus,” he says. “Both for the Butler community and our neighbors, I believe this space will be a great environment for people to create valuable connections and build relationships—all while enjoying meals from a quality menu. We’re also thrilled to be supporting the Indianapolis community by embracing local ownership.”

Butler and Chatham Tap finalized a lease for the space in late August, and if all goes as planned, Pentzien expects to be open for business by the end of October. They anticipate employing approximately 50 people at the restaurant, with at least two of the General Managers having an ownership interest at the location.

The space will maintain the same indoor footprint as Scotty’s had, but Chatham Tap plans to increase the amount of outdoor seating. The location’s conference room will continue to be available for private parties and business meetings.

“We think this can be a great nexus between the neighborhood and the university,” Pentzien says. “We’re going to come in with a game plan, but we’re going to evolve quickly to meet the needs of the people who come to call Chatham Tap at Butler their place to gather.”


Hours for the new location:
Monday–Thursday, 11:00 AM–midnight
Friday, 11:00 AM–1:00 AM
Saturday, 11:00 AM–1:00 AM
Sunday, 11:00 AM–11:00 PM
As is tradition for Chatham Tap, the location will also open early (and serve breakfast) for key weekend soccer matches and stay open late for Butler cultural or athletics events.


Media Contact:
Katie Grieze
News Content Manager

Chatham Tap

Chatham Tap to Fill Vacant Restaurant Space on Campus

Local pub’s third location will encourage connection between Butler and surrounding neighborhood.

Sep 12 2019 Read more

From Nigeria to Butler, First Year Up to the Challenge

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Aug 20 2018

INDIANAPOLIS— It started as a friendly wager.

Teacher to pupil. Apply to as many colleges as possible, with the goal of earning at least $1 million in scholarship offers. But the accounts differ, a bit. According to teacher, it was a way for pupil to ‘explore his options.’ According to pupil, it was a way to get ‘$200 to take his girlfriend on a date to Buffalo Wild Wings.’ That’s a lot of wings.

Either way, pupil won the bet. Or, teacher won the bet. Well, those accounts differ, too, depending on who you ask.

Abiodun Akinseye applied to 32 colleges. He finished 28 applications. He was accepted into 30 colleges. Wait, what? Yes, two schools accepted him without a complete application. He has a heaping pile of acceptance letters to prove it, along with the multiple days it took to clean out the 2,000-plus emails he accumulated from different schools. There was Union College, Samford, Wittenberg, Central State, it’s hard for him to remember them all, but most states in the U.S. were covered. At the end of it all, Abiodun had more than $1 million in scholarship offers. And $200 from his teacher.

Genevieve McLeish-Petty wanted Abiodun to push himself. To explore his options. In her 17 years of teaching, she never came across a student quite like Abiodun. She knew the Northwest High School valedictorian was capable of getting into several colleges, but she wanted him to know it, too. So, she threw in a $200 motivator – earn the most scholarship money in the school and get $200. Next thing she knew, it seemed like Abiodun was coming up to her every day with another acceptance letter. And more scholarship money.

In the end, Abiodun chose Butler University. A campus he first stepped foot onto as a 10th grader, he was drawn to Butler’s location, size, Honors Program, and liberal arts education. But most of all, he was drawn to Butler because he knew it would challenge him. And though he made the college application process look easy, his road from Nigeria to Indianapolis was anything but.

“There’s definitely a reason I keep all of those acceptance letters at home in a big box,” says Abiodun, as he scrolls through pictures on his phone until he gets to the one he is looking for – a picture of all the acceptance letters and envelopes piled high. “I want to keep them to show how far I have come and how hard I have worked to get to where I am. I went from Nigeria, and tough, tough times, to graduating at the top of my class, and now really a dream at Butler. So, it has been good, but challenging, and now I want another challenge.”

I went from Nigeria, and tough, tough times, to graduating at the top of my class, and now really a dream at Butler.

From Nigeria to the U.S.

Abiodun grew up in Nigeria until he was five. He remembers it well. But he also vividly remembers why his family fled for America.

There was family tragedy. His aunt tried to kill him and his two brothers, so his mother and father moved the family to America. Abiodun still has nightmares about the pain he felt from being poisoned. He felt like he was on fire. About his mom crying next to him when he was laying in the hospital bed.

He also felt guilty for a long time. He was in charge of watching his younger brother when the hitman came and hit his brother with a motorcycle. He blamed himself.

They settled in Indianapolis in 2005. Abiodun remembers the cereal Corn Flakes and wondering what it was. He remembers the music. He definitely didn’t understand the music. The first song he heard was Beyoncé’s “Single Ladies,” and he wasn’t a fan of all the heavy bass. He taught himself English by watching "Sesame Street" daily. His favorite character was Cookie Monster, he could relate to his appetite. Then there was the snow. His family had no idea what the white stuff falling from the sky was. His mom warned him not to touch it. He still prefers summer to winter.

“What’s crazy is I never expected life to be harder in America than in Nigeria,” Abiodun says. “When I came here, things got worse.”

Abiodun was bullied in school. Classmates called him an “African booty scratcher.” They threw paper balls at him, made him feel ashamed of being Nigerian, and made fun of his accent. They asked him if he was related to monkeys, if turning the lights off would make his skin disappear, and if he knew what deodorant was.

He told his mom about the bullying, so he changed schools. But the bullying continued.

“The bullying caused me to be depressed and for years I really didn’t know how to deal with my emotions or my feelings,” he says. “It’s still hard, because the depression turned into anxiety,  and it was all tough.”

The adjustment has been difficult, he says. His family lives in Speedway. His mom and dad are both nurses. He has an older brother and three younger brothers. And quickly, Abiodun realized, academics and art were his refuge.


His Escape

Abiodun’s mother told him when he was young that education would be his escape. He says that always stuck with him.

So, when the bullying persisted, and he was down, he would focus on his studies, he says. Education runs in his family. His mom got her Master’s Degree a few years after they moved to the U.S. His dad has his Bachelor’s Degree from Nigeria. His grandmother’s sister has a doctorate in education. His favorite aunt got her Bachelor’s Degree a few years ago in the U.S.

His best friends growing up?

“The characters in books,” Abiodun says. “I spent all my time reading and studying. I would read the dictionary to grow my vocabulary. I love fiction with elements of reality because those books give me the ability to jump from the real world, but not take the full leap to the stars.”

He loves “The Perks of Being a Wallflower,” “The Fault in Our Stars,” and the Percy Jackson series. Usually, if he’s into a book, he will finish it in a few hours.

Drawing runs in his family, too. And it is something that has always helped him with his depression, he says. He started drawing when he was four. His dad taught him how when they lived in Nigeria.

Now, he fills up sketchpad after sketchpad. He makes sure to draw in pen, as opposed to pencil, to avoid overthinking. Pencil, he says, gives him the option to erase.

“Drawing helps me control my emotions,” he says. “It helps me take what is in my head, what is bothering me or what I am thinking about, and get it out and put it on paper in a creative form.”


The Last Valedictorian

McLeish-Petty knew about Abiodun before he ever enrolled in her sophomore honors English class at Northwest High School.

She ran the honors program at the school, so she had a whole lot of practice typing out his name. He broke test-score records, was known for his creativity, and of course, for how bright he was. At first, Abiodun was quiet, but as he became more comfortable, he started to challenge the class.

“We read some difficult literature and Abiodun was able to facilitate conversations when I couldn’t get the rest of the class on board,” she says. “He would stir up conversations by playing devil’s advocate, he would make everyone think in different ways. His fascination with certain topics were lightyears ahead of what a high school kid typically thinks about.”

Most students, McLeish-Petty says, just want an answer so they can put it down. Abiodun wanted to know why; he wanted to know what was the point. He was very refreshing, she says.

Then there was the time she tricked Abiodun into joining the drama club when he was a sophomore. It started as him working behind the scenes. She convinced him to design the sets for “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.”

“Because he is so smart, after a couple days, he knew everyone’s lines and where everyone should be,” McLeish-Petty says. “By the time the show opened, we had some people quit and Abiodun filled in as Grandma Josephine and doubled as an oompa loompa.”

By the time he was a senior, he was the lead in the school play.

Abiodun would end up with a 4.1 GPA. He would deliver the school’s final valedictorian address – the building will shift to a middle school in the fall. He would discuss religion and politics with McLeish-Petty for hours. He won $12,000 when he wrote a two-page essay about his life for a Kiwanis Club scholarship that honors local high schoolers for their resilience.

It wasn’t just teacher helping pupil. Abiodun forever changed McLeish-Petty.

A high school teacher for 17 years, Abiodun got her thinking. If she had been in his life earlier, around the time he started being bullied, she could have tried to make it better much sooner. How many young people are there out there who just need someone to talk to, she started to wonder.

For the first time in 17 years, McLeish-Petty won’t be teaching high school this school year. She will be teaching at Coldspring Elementary School. Something Abiodun inspired.

“Every once in awhile you have a student come through who you know will be in your life way past graduation,” she says. “Abiodun is one of those people. He’s not just smart. He’s self-aware, he wants to have an impact, he will befriend the kid that is sitting alone. I am positive I will still be talking to Abiodun in 15 years.”



It’s a few days before the start of his first year, and Abiodun is walking around Butler’s campus.

He says he feels excited about the start of classes, but definitely a bit anxious. He’ll be taking Spanish – his fourth language (he already speaks English, French, and Yoruba), Calculus, Honors First Year Seminar, and Introduction to Art.

Abiodun plans on majoring in Psychology and minoring in Art and English. He hopes to write a book, and also help others who are going through depression. He’s interested in child psychology, and also art therapy.

“Maybe I will be able to make a change and help,” he says. “I definitely want to write my own book when I’m done with college.”

But that is down the line. For now, he wonders if he will play intramural soccer, maybe join student government, maybe get involved in a video game club. He’s excited for the food on campus. He hopes to make some friends.

He remembers back when he was in 10th grade and came to Butler’s campus for the first time on a school trip.

“I wasn’t that impressed,” he says. “But that’s because I was a judgmental teenager. As I saw more and more schools, I realized how big they were, and crowded, and confusing, and I realized how much I liked Butler. It was a perfect size.”

Here he is, 30 acceptances later. There may be differing accounts about why Abiodun applied to so many schools. But, one thing is clear: he’s up to whatever challenges are ahead.


Media contact:
Rachel Stern


From Nigeria to Butler, First Year Up to the Challenge

30 acceptances later, Abiodun plans a psych major to help others.

Aug 20 2018 Read more
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CampusStudent Life

Butler Ready to Launch First Esports and Gaming Space, but Much More to Come

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Oct 24 2019



A new space on Butler University’s campus dedicated to esports and gaming is in the works. But it will be about much more than one of the world’s hottest industries.

The Esports and Gaming Lounge is set to open in late November. It will be located in Atherton Union, adjacent to the newly designed Plum Market at C-Club, which will open around the same time. Open to the campus community, the space will have stations dedicated to esports, or competitive, organized video gaming. There will be 16 gaming PCs, an area of gaming consoles, and an area for tabletop gaming.

But this is just the beginning. Plans for a much larger, 7,500-square-foot multi-use space in the Butler Parking Garage are in the works, says Eric Kammeyer, Butler’s new Director of Esports and Gaming Technology. The space is slated to open fall 2020, and it will build upon the Atherton Union space, featuring 50 gaming PCs, an area of gaming consoles, and room for technology-infused corporate trainings and events or youth STEM and esports camps. It will also have broadcasting production capabilities for live events such as podcasts or esports competitions, a coworking space, a cafe, and a small office space available for lease to support new ventures.

In addition to the Butler esports team that competes in the BIG EAST and will start practicing in the new space, gaming and innovative technologies are being incorporated into the wider Butler curriculum, as the new spaces will enable campus to serve as a sports hub for the greater Indianapolis community. These new spaces will foster student access, community partnerships, and innovations in teaching and learning—all key aspects of Butler’s new strategic direction.

“While competitive and recreational esports is a key driver of this new space, our vision is larger,” says Butler’s Vice President for Strategy and Innovation, Melissa Beckwith. “Our goal is to create a space that will ultimately support curricular innovation, serve the K-12 community, and align with two of the city’s economic engines—sports and technology. Integrating these efforts is the key to creating maximum impact for our students, faculty, and broader community.”


Future Esports & Technology space in the Sunset Avenue Parking Garage, expected to open in fall 2020


Why invest?

In 2014, more than 70 million people across the globe watched esports on the internet or television, according to Newzoo, the leading provider of market intelligence covering global games, esports, and mobile markets. That same year, a single esports event retained viewership that surpassed the NBA’s Game Seven.

Newzoo expects that esports viewership will increase to 427 million people and top $1 billion in revenue in 2019.

“Gaming is extremely popular among students, and its popularity will only continue to grow,” says Butler’s Vice President for Student Affairs Frank E. Ross. “Universities must be responsive to students’ changing needs and interests, identifying innovative and meaningful ways to engage them on campus. This investment in Butler students is important as we continue to enhance the student experience.”

It is also an area exploding with job opportunities. 

Butler Assistant Professor of Creative Media and Entertainment Ryan Rogers just published a book on esportsUnderstanding Esports: An Introduction to the Global Phenomenon. The book explores the rise of the esports industry and its significance, and is the first comprehensive look at an industry that has risen so quickly.

Because of that accelerated growth, the industry needs employees.

“It is incumbent on us, as an institute of higher learning, to prepare students for jobs and get them thinking about new jobs they may not have previously thought about, or may not even know exist,” says Rogers, whose research has explored the ways video games influence their audiences and users. “It is imperative to serve students, and this is a growth field. There are opportunities for students in this field, from competing, to working, to conducting research. As a higher ed institution, we should work to understand why, like anything else, this is happening and how it is happening.”



Rogers teaches an esports class. He also teaches a class that works with FOX Sports. This semester, that class is working closely with Caffeine, a new broadcasting service that is mostly geared toward streaming video games.

But it is about much more than just integrating esports into the Butler curriculum. There is a much broader, cross-disciplinary effort being made toward integrating gaming into pedagogy across campus.

James McGrath, Professor of Religion and Classics, says: “There is real educational value in the mixing of gaming and learning because, I remember at one point in my life, learning was fun.”

McGrath says as educators, it is easy to fall into old habits such as talking at people, or doing “other boring things like that.” But, he says, there is a reason that students spend hours playing video games. These games give people the freedom to fail and try again.

“We often forget the need to incorporate failure in any educational experience that is ultimately going to lead to success and learning,” he says. “The only way to become good at something is to do it repeatedly, and fail, and if you get penalized for failing, you will never get the chance to ultimately get very good at it.”

Incorporating game-like elements, such as a point-based system, into higher education sparks learning, McGrath says. This is the gamification of higher education. 

For McGrath, this started when he was teaching a course on the Bible. The second day of class, he knew he had to teach his students, essentially, a history lesson about why Bibles are different and where the table of contents comes from, for example. He decided to create a card game, Canon: The Card Game

“People like to game,” McGrath says. “Faculty are starting to recognize the value of these types of things as part of culture and things we can harness for good in terms of learning outcomes. The fact that institutions such as our own are being more aware that people need to be well-rounded and that involves different things, even gaming, is a huge step toward true innovation.”

Jason Goldsmith, Associate Professor of English, quite literally studies video games. 

He offers a course called Video Game Narrative, which looks at how video games tell stories and what they can do differently from a standard novel or film. One iteration of the course studied Lord of the Rings. The students read the novel, watched the film, and then played online with people all over the world. The class looked at how the narrative shifted based on environment.

“These kids grow up playing video games much more than watching movies, so it is vital that we teach them to think about this medium critically with the same attention we ask of them when reading Shakespeare,” he says. “If they are playing these games, and if they will one day produce these games, we must encourage them to think more deeply about the relationship between story, game, and what players want out of a game.”

Goldsmith has also gamified aspects of classes he teaches, such as a course he recently taught on Jane Austen. Austen played many games when she was younger, and games play a crucial role in her novels. Students had to create a Jane Austen game, complete with a character sheet that reflected the characteristics Austen valued in her main characters.

Goldsmith says he looks forward to studying the broader cultural significance of gaming, while also making sure Butler continues to evolve and prepare students for emerging career opportunities. 

Butler is working University-wide to do just that. 


Future Esports & Technology space in the Sunset Avenue Parking Garage, expected to open in fall 2020



When John George ‘18 started at Butler, he had two passions: sports and video games. But he had never heard of esports.

He was watching ESPN one morning and heard something about competitive video games and esports. His mind was blown. He started Googling like crazy, and he found there was this whole world out there with teams and leagues. He started playing League of Legends and was hooked.

By the time he was a senior, he heard about Rogers and his esports class. After the first class, he ran up to Rogers, and the two decided to start the Butler esports student organization. There wasn't much interest that first year, and George was the only senior at the meeting. There were a handful of others.

“I can’t believe we went from having some interest, to now being on the brink of an actual space on campus,” says George, who worked for Echo Fox, an esports organization in Los Angeles, running a podcast and producing video after graduation. “We used to all practice in our dorm rooms apart, so the chance to all be together will be amazing.”

Interest has grown quite a bit, too. In 2018, the esports team started competing in the BIG EAST. The team competes in two titles in the BIG EAST now—Rocket League and League of Legends

“The BIG EAST Conference and our members have been formally exploring the esports space since 2017,” says Chris Schneider, Senior Associate Commissioner for Sport Administration and Championships at the BIG EAST. “It’s exciting to see growth on each campus, and Butler University is certainly one of the leading programs in the conference.”

Growth on Butler’s campus over the last few years has really skyrocketed. There is discussion around Butler-sanctioned scholarships, Kammeyer says.

“Interest on campus has mirrored the explosion of this industry at the global level,” he says. “We continue to work with our partners at the high school level to develop advancement opportunities much like traditional sports. We want to provide an end-to-end solution for those that want to pursue anything that falls under the umbrella of esports and innovative technology, from music and production, to competition, to developing the games they are playing.”



Butler is not the only member of the Indianapolis community active in the esports and gaming space. 

Ryan Vaughn, Indiana Sports Corp President, says esports is no longer an emerging phenomenon, but rather something that the wider community is very much engaged in. However, Indianapolis lacks the physical space to bring this sport to life.

“With basketball or swimming, for example, it is easy for us as a city to demonstrate we have the infrastructure here to compete with other cities to host major events. But for esports events, it is different,” Vaughn says. “It will be a game changer for us to now have a community space and a University to partner with.”

Esports also differ from other sports in their clear connection to STEM fields and tech, Vaughn says. To continue to grow in these areas as a state, it is important to recognize and develop that connection.

Scott Dorsey agrees. Dorsey, Managing Partner at High Alpha and Past-Chair of the Indiana Sports Corp, sees Butler’s new esports and tech space as key to developing Indiana’s workforce.

“Esports is an excellent example of the collision between sports and technology in Indianapolis,” Dorsey says. “We are a city that embraces our sports legacy and is well positioned to leverage our explosive growth in technology and innovation. Butler’s planned esports and technology park will be an important asset in our city as we build on our unique strengths and further develop, recruit, and retain top tech talent to the state.”

Potential partnerships with professional sports teams, other universities, K-12 schools, and start-up companies are all part of Butler’s larger plan, says Kammeyer. 

This past summer, for example, Butler partnered with NexTech, an Indianapolis-based organization committed to elevating the technical, critical-thinking, and problem-solving skills of K-12 students, to host their Explorers Camp and provide programming for the Catapult Program—an intensive summer experience for high school students interested in exploring careers in technology.

“The investment Butler is making in innovative and transformative technology will be a tremendous asset for our city as we work to open doors for youth to explore opportunities in related fields,” says NexTech President Karen Jung.

Partnerships could lead to potential internship opportunities for Butler students, summer camps for community members, and mentorship programs for the esports team, for example.

Take the Indiana Pacers, for example. In 2017, Cody Parrent was hired to be their Director of Esports Operations. That year, they were one of 17 inaugural teams in the NBA 2K League. The league drafts players 18 years old or older from all over the world. 

Since that inaugural year, the league has added six new teams, including one from China. 

“We have seen interest grow exponentially,” says Parrent, who coaches the team, serves as the general manager, and works on partnerships.

As part of his partnership work, Parrent has spent time guest lecturing in Butler’s esports classes. And that has led to the Pacers having multiple Butler interns—a multimedia intern and a business operations intern.

“A lot of people know about the gaming side of esports, but there is a whole other side, which is the business side of things, and that is what I see as the most exciting part of what Butler is doing,” Parrent says. “The sport itself is open to everyone, as is the business side of things. We are ecstatic about finally having a hub that will bring everything together. The possibilities are endless.”


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications


Student Access and Success

At the heart of Butler Beyond is a desire to increase student access and success, putting a Butler education within reach of all who desire to pursue it. With a focus on enhancing the overall student experience that is foundational to a Butler education, gifts to this pillar will grow student scholarships, elevate student support services, expand experiential learning opportunities, and more. Learn more, make a gift, and read other stories like this one at

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CampusStudent Life

Butler Ready to Launch First Esports and Gaming Space, but Much More to Come

The new space in Atherton Union will open in late November, with a second Parking Garage space planned for 2020.

Oct 24 2019 Read more

Dear Bulldogs

Dear Bulldogs, 

After eight years of greeting potential students with the news of their admission to Butler University, running down bones at Hinkle Fieldhouse to officially get basketball games started, and serving as Butler’s all-around ambassador, I will retire at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year.

There comes a point in life when it’s time to move on to the next chapter and now such a milestone is upon me. So, on account of my increasing age, long tenure on the job, and eagerness to enjoy life outside of the spotlight, I’ll soon be wrapping up my official mascot duties. It turns out, I am a lot like humans in that regard.

However, before I hang up the leash, I will be embarking on a farewell tour dubbed, One Last Trip. Throughout the remaining academic year, I will be appearing at Butler games, various events on campus, and even following the men’s basketball team to a handful of destinations around the country to surprise prospective students and to see alumni. Not to mention, several items of One Last Trip merchandise have been commissioned and will be available in the Butler Bookstore and The Shop so that fans can commemorate the occasion. 

So, I hope to see you around campus, Indianapolis, and elsewhere as we set out for Chicago, Washington DC, Milwaukee, and New York before the close of the academic year. First up, however, is Butler’s Homecoming celebration THIS weekend. I look forward to seeing you at Butler’s Biggest Tailgate, including the 19th annual Butler Bulldog Beauty Contest, as well as at various other events.

Oh, and to address the 65-pound bulldog in the room, I know right where your head is going here, and yes, there is a puppy in the works. 

My humans, Pops and Evan Krauss ’16, are working hard with my vet, Dr. Kurt Phillips ’92 to identify my successor, Butler Blue IV. And speaking of Evan, for the past six years Pops and I have been grooming him as a secondary “Dawg Guy,” which is perfect since Blue IV will be going home with him and his wife, Kennedy. This will relieve my Mom and Pops, after devoting 16 years to the care of Butler Blue II and me. 

In the meantime, I can’t wait for Blue IV to arrive so that I can personally show him/her the ropes! Don’t worry I’ll keep you updated on when that is coming. 

And finally I want to thank you, Bulldog Nation, for eight remarkable years. Thank you for allowing me to serve as your Butler Bulldog. 

President Teddy Roosevelt once said, “Far and away the best prize that life has to offer is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.” 

Representing you, the best students, alumni, faculty, and staff in the world was without a doubt work worth doing.

So thank you, and as always, GO DAWGS!




Butler Blue III (Trip)
Official Mascot, Butler University

Follow my  #OneLastTrip experiences on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.



Dear Bulldogs

A message from Butler Blue III: "I will retire at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year." 


Butler Names New Vice President for Advancement


PUBLISHED ON Mar 07 2018

Jonathan Purvis, a respected leader in higher education advancement with 19 years of experience, has been named Butler University’s Vice President for Advancement. He begins his duties at Butler on April 16, 2018.

Purvis comes to Butler from Indiana University where he has served as Vice President for Development and Regional Campuses. Prior to that, he served as Executive Director of Development and Alumni Relations for the Indiana University School of Education and Senior Director for Capital Projects at Washington University in St. Louis. He has also held varied positions at the IU Foundation ranging from Executive Director of Special Gifts and Annual Giving to Assistant to the President.

“Jonathan possesses an exceptional depth of experience within higher education advancement,” said Butler University President James Danko. “His proven success in development, and demonstrated leadership in higher education, make him the right person to help us to achieve our ambitious fundraising goals.”

Purvis holds the Certified Fund Raising Executive credential (CFRE) and has taught a variety of fundraising courses at Indiana University. He is a frequent presenter with the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) and is a contributing author to the third edition of the acclaimed Achieving Excellence in Fundraising. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English and master’s degree in Public Affairs, both from Indiana University Bloomington.

Having grown up in Noblesville, Indiana, in a family of Butler alumni, Purvis is excited to return to Central Indiana to be part of the Butler community. He is joined by his wife Brittany, daughter Sophie, and son Joshua.


Media contact:
Rachel Stern


Butler Names New Vice President for Advancement

Jonathan Purvis comes to BU from IU.

Mar 07 2018 Read more

Perseverance and Patients: A 23-Year Journey to Graduation

By Rachel Stern

When Trent Tipple was at his low point, living in Indianapolis, Indiana, experiencing nose bleeds during class, suffering memory loss while trying to study for tests, juggling pre-med classes with daily dialysis treatments, little did he know this was just the first of three major low points in his life.

There was the lymphoma diagnosis. Then the kidney failure. Again. And a kidney transplant. Again.

But to hear Tipple tell it, these are all moments that have shaped an amazing life. So far. Because, let’s be honest, Tipple has defied death approximately three times. And, in his words, he feels “full of gratitude.”  

“I have learned to treasure each day and never ignore what is right in front of me,” Tipple says. “I try to remember that the relationships and memories are what actually matter and, as cliché as it is, tomorrow really isn’t guaranteed.”

But there is one thing nagging at Tipple. He hasn’t technically graduated from Butler University, where he was an undergraduate biology major. All of those dialysis appointments didn’t stop him, though, let’s make that clear.

It was that darn beeper.

Tipple, who enrolled at Butler in the fall of 1991, was on track to graduate in 1995. He was 19 credits shy and had applied to Indiana University’s School of Medicine. But, then, that beeper started going off and he had to answer it.

Because Tipple was on the kidney transplant list, he always had a beeper on in case a transplant arrived. After three years, his beeper went off. It just so happened to be during his last semester, senior year. So, technically, he never graduated.

That’s all about to change.


Always Interested in Medicine

Tipple grew up in Wabash County, Indiana. Farm country as he refers to it.

Long before the constant trips to the doctor, he had an interest in helping people by being a physician. Pretty ironic, he says. He was always interested in the ability to help others, and working in medicine gave him the opportunity to blend his interest in science with that desire. 

When Tipple was a sophomore in high school he stepped foot on Butler’s campus for the first time as part of a youth event. He was drawn to the campus’ small size and intimate setting.

“Everyone I came across was just nice,” Tipple says. “That first encounter made me familiar with the school and gave me a certain comfort level. I was attracted to the smaller size and the opportunity to get a well-rounded education beyond just science-based courses.”

Turns out the smaller setting would be crucial for many reasons. Tipple was diagnosed with chronic renal disease before his freshman year at Butler. He applied early to Butler, was accepted, and enrolled. With his disease came several trips to the doctor every week. Tipple knew going to Butler would enable him to continue down his desired pre-med path, while also being physically close to the downtown campus of IU Medical Center, as a kidney transplant was what he would eventually need. Tipple felt a school the size of Butler would be more willing to accommodate his specific needs.

“I knew I would be in and out of certain classes due to doctor’s appointments and, at any point, might need to miss class or assignments,” Tipple says. “At a smaller school, it is much easier to form personal relationships and communicate about my specific needs and situation. I think that would be much harder to do at a larger university.”  


Determined to Follow His Dreams

Trent at Butler with fraternity brothers.

Jim Shellaas remembers laying eyes on Tipple for the first time. Tipple was a freshman. Shellhaas was Tipple’s academic advisor, and, right away, something was different.

“He showed up to our first meeting with his mother,” says Shellhaas, who retired two years ago after working at Butler as a biology professor. “Now don’t get me wrong, his mother was a lovely person, but most freshmen don’t come to their appointments with their parents. She was there to explain Trent’s medical condition.”

From that first meeting, Shellhaas says, it was clear that Tipple was a determined young man. And Shellhaas’ first impression never changed over the course of four years.

“He had a dream and he was focused and no matter what, he wasn’t going to let go of it,” Shellhaas says. “It is hard enough to be on a pre-med track when a student is fully healthy. But to do that with a health condition like Trent’s, you have to be special and he is special. He had a goal in mind, plugged along, and never lost sight of it.”

Barb Howes recalls a student who was extremely responsible and always showed up to work at the Science Libraries with a work ethic that stood out. Howes has interacted with thousands of students during her time at Butler, but Tipple stands out.

“No matter what was asked of him, he did it, and he always had a wonderful attitude,” she says. “You never would have known that he was dealing with all of the dialysis, and the pain. It amazes me that he was able to remain so positive, despite having to face so much and juggle so much as a young person.”


Nothing Could Stop Him

After being on dialysis for two-and-a-half years, and after seven surgeries due to dialysis-related complications, Tipple’s beeper finally went off. He would later learn that a woman named Shiela, who’s family decided that she would be an organ donor, enabled him to become a kidney transplant recipient that January day in 1995. But, it wasn’t that simple.

Though he walked in his commencement ceremony, technically, Tipple did not graduate from Butler because of the timing of the transplant surgery and the recovery associated with it. He was 19 credits short.

He did, however, make the most of his time spent around the physicians he still hoped to one day be. “You meet tons of patients and they all impact you in different ways, but Trent stuck out and always will stick out,” says Sharon Moe, professor of nephrology at Indiana University School of Medicine, who first met Tipple when he was a patient at IU Medical Center. “He was just a smart, inquisitive, sharp young man.”

Moe learned that Tipple wanted to attend IU School of Medicine when he was a patient. Tipple also worked in Moe’s lab when he was a student at Butler. She decided to arrange a meeting between Tipple and the head of the Medical School’s admissions committee.

“I learned later that those conversations I had, thanks to Dr. Moe, were key for me ever getting in to med school and achieving my dream of becoming a physician,” says Tipple. “I am so thankful for people like Dr. Moe who believed in me and went out of their way to vouch for me and look out for me. They changed the course of my life.”

“Trent was networking, so to speak, or creating strong relationships, before that was even a thing,” Shellhaas says. “Instead of feeling sorry for himself when he was in the hospital, he was thinking about his next move and how he could achieve his dreams. He is an amazing person.”

He was accepted into IU’s School of Medicine in the summer of 1995, even though he didn’t have an undergraduate degree.


The Struggles Continue

When it was time to head to medical school, Tipple had to, well, learn how to learn again, he says. A fraternity brother from his Butler days, Doug Towriss, was already a medical student at IU. He tutored Tipple for well over a year.

“He taught me what it was to know something, versus being familiar with it,” Tipple says. “If you can’t write it down, you don’t know it. That was his big thing. A lot of time was spent at the chalk board with me writing down pathways, lists, and that type of thing from memory. He didn’t have to do that but he wanted to help me get caught back up.”

Tipple ended up graduating from medical school in 2000. He completed a general pediatrics residency in 2003 and a fellowship in neonatal-perinatal medicine in 2006 at The Ohio State University. By 2006 he was an attending neonatologist and assistant professor of pediatrics at The Ohio State University College of Medicine.

But, things weren’t all smooth sailing.

In 2008, he was in Vienna for a conference with his wife and two children. In retrospect, he had been experiencing headaches for a few months, but that is just in retrospect. They wandered through the Swarovski store looking at all the jewelry. Then, all Tipple remembers is his world went black and the loud store went silent. He was 35 and experienced his first seizure.

He was rushed to the hospital, eventually made his way back to Ohio, and on Christmas Eve 2008, he was officially diagnosed with a rare form of lymphoma. Technically speaking, he had post-transplant lymphoma. It is a kind of lymphoma only seen in transplant patients. The cruel irony? While Tipple took powerful medications to prevent his body from rejecting his kidney transplant 13 years earlier, those same medications kept his body from recognizing the cancerous cells and eliminating them. Those same cells actually allowed the tumor to form in the first place.

Trent with his cousin who donated a kidney.

This type of lymphoma carries an average 2-year survival rate of less than 10 percent around the world. But, Tipple’s oncologist at OSU had developed an experimental therapy that showed promise in the six patients who used it prior to Tipple.

Three weeks after starting the therapy, the tumor that had been the size of a walnut was gone. And within six months, there was no evidence of the active disease at all. Tipple was in remission. “It was honestly a miracle,” Tipple says. “I really thought I was going to die. I thought that was it and I just could not believe I was in remission. It is impossible.”

But, Tipple’s story does not end there.

One year after his seizure in Austria, the kidney that he had received about 15 years earlier failed. Tipple was back on dialysis.

“I was feeling devastated. I was angry and frustrated. But yet again, I had the amazing support of those around me,” Tipple says. “My wife put everything in perspective when she reminded me that a year earlier we thought I was going to die and said we will do whatever it takes.”

After 15 months of daily dialysis in their home, Tipple was back in the hospital for his second kidney transplant in 2011. This time, he knew the donor. “My cousin is a police officer outside of Seattle. She called me one day and said she was coming to Columbus to finish testing because she was informed that she was a match,” Tipple says. “How do you thank someone who says that?”

She was a match and Tipple had his second transplant on Aug. 2, 2011. Since then, things have been great, he says. But then there is that elusive degree from Butler.


Getting that Piece of Paper

Travis Ryan met Tipple about five years ago. He didn’t know much about him, but invited him to Butler’s campus to speak to a seminar class about potential opportunities to pursue research projects. “I had no idea about his background, but I knew he had a ton of experience in the research field and thought, as a Butler graduate, he could inspire our students,” says Ryan, who is the Biological Sciences Department Chair at Butler. “When we spoke after his talk and I learned about his background, and I remember thinking we should really look into trying to get Trent his official degree. He embodies everything Butler is about.”

Tipple was extremely excited about the idea.

“It always came up in job interviews and things like that,” he says. “But more than that, I know it is just a piece of paper, but it really means something important to me. My time at Butler was extremely valuable and meant a lot to me and to know that I officially graduated would mean a lot.”

Ryan worked with many people at Butler to make it official. Many courses that Tipple completed at IU’s School of Medicine, it ended up, could be counted toward the credits he was missing at Butler.

After 23 years, Tipple will be officially graduating from Butler.


Full Circle

Trent with his family on a trip to Germany in 2008.

Tipple tries to get back to Indianapolis, and specifically, Butler’s campus at least once a year. He usually returns for a basketball game or two, and comes each May for the Indianapolis 500.

Unfortunately, he won’t be here for the spring commencement ceremony on May 11. It is a bit harder now. In 2014, he started working at the University of Alabama at Birmingham as an associate professor. He is Director of the Neonatal Redox Biology Program and his work has been continuously funded by the National Institutes of Health since 2007. Tipple also serves as the Director of Neonatology Faculty Development and Program Co-Director of Neonatal-Perinatal Fellowship Program.

“After everything, I am doing what I love. I am teaching, I have a research lab, and I also see patients. I love doing all of that and it is exactly what I always wanted to do,” he says. Tipple plans to be back in Indianapolis at the end of May for the Indianapolis 500. He will be stopping by Butler’s campus. And this time, he will be picking up a diploma.

“It feels great to just come full circle after everything,” Tipple says. “I appreciate everything Butler did for me and with all I have been through and all the people who supported me and were there for me, everyone really made this happen.”


Feature: Trent with his wife at medical school graduation (left). Tren with his son at a Butler Basketball game (right).
Top: Trent at Butler with fraternity brothers.
Middle: Trent with his cousin who donated a kidney.
Bottom: Trent with his family on a trip to Germany in 2008.


Trent Tipple MD

Perseverance and Patients: A 23-Year Journey to Graduation

After two kidney transplants and a battle with cancer, Trent Tipple M.D. will finally graduate.


15 Things You May Not Know about Spring 2018 Commencement

  1. The Real Deal
    Every single graduate receives their actual diploma (if they have completed their degree requirements) as they walk across stage. For logistical reasons, most universities issue fake diplomas on the day of graduation.
  2. Like a Pro
    The stages in Hinkle are built in less than 24 hours. Professional stage hands and sound engineers from Clowes Memorial Hall do the set up and tear down for commencement each year.
  3. So You Think You Can Walk?
    Michelle Jarvis, Associate Provost and a dance faculty member, helped to choreograph the processional on to Hinkle’s main floor.
  4. Crowded House
    Hinkle Fieldhouse’s floor can seat up to 1,200 graduates, 80 musicians, and up to 65 VIP for the ceremony.
  5. Take a Seat
    All the chairs set up on the main basketball floor and in the Efroymson Family Gym are zip tied together for safety, and each will contain a bottle of water and a program for the graduates and guests.
  6. “I Majored in Love. No, really.”
    There is a member of the class of 2018 who majored in Love as part of the individualized major program.
  7. Kellies E. Murphy
    This year’s graduating class has 963 participants, two of whom are named Kelly E. Murphy.
  8. All In the Family
    There are more than 17 Butler faculty and staff members who have family members graduating (spouses, children, and in some cases multiple children).
  9. The Year of the Symphony Orchestra
    Every other year, the Butler Symphony Orchestra (BSO) and the Wind Ensemble take turns performing at each Spring Commencement. This year will be BSO’s turn under the direction of Richard Auldon Clark.
  10. Butler Sing
    Every year, the School of Music’s Chorale performs at all three Academic ceremonies: Convocation during Welcome Week, Winter Commencement, and Spring Commencement.
  11. Jaguars Helping Out
    The IUPUI ROTC will serve as the color guard at this year’s ceremony.

  12. One in Three
    Of the students receiving their graduate degrees at this year’s ceremony, 34% already hold a bachelor’s degree from Butler.
  13. How Do You Pronounce That?
    More than 40 staff and student volunteers will help to make commencement a success this year. Two of the volunteers–Professors Scott Bridge and Ann Bilodeau–will serve as Announcers of Names by reading each graduate’s name as they walk across stage. Bridge and Bilodeau prepare by practicing for days from an excel spreadsheet with phonetic pronunciations. If they are uncertain, they have been known to contact the graduate to confirm how they’d like to be announced.
  14. Harry Potter-esque
    The flags that are part of the Commencement processional are called Gonfalons and are modeled after heraldic banners used by city states and guilds in medieval Italy (and by the houses in the Harry Potter series).
  15. Go Dawgs! No Really, You Gotta Go!
    Butler Baseball plays at 2:00 PM on Commencement day. Senior players will graduate first, then go suit up for their game. 

15 Things You May Not Know about Spring 2018 Commencement

What do Harry Potter and the class of 2018 have in common? Read on. 


The Untold Story of the #ButlerBound Program

BY Kristi Lafree

PUBLISHED ON Oct 23 2018



It was so obvious.

Michael Kaltenmark remembers the exact moment the plan was hatched to begin delivering Butler University admission decisions with a 65-pound, heavy-breathing, slobbery bulldog.

“I immediately thought ‘Yes. Duh. Of course we should be doing that!’” says Kaltenmark.

It was 2014 and Kaltenmark, Director of Community and Government Relations and caretaker to official live mascots Butler Blue II and III (better known as Trip) had been traveling with bulldog in tow to different cities alongside the men’s basketball team. The duo would make stops at some of the city’s main attractions and called their treks the Big Dawgs Tour.

“We had already set this precedent of taking Trip on the road,” Kaltenmark says. “Matt Mindrum, our Vice President of Marketing at the time, suggested we should bolster those efforts and go see prospective students in each market who were waiting for their admission decision.”

Light bulb moment. The #ButlerBound program was born.

“I knew it was a great idea, and that was validated after the first few visits we made,” Kaltenmark says. “We saw each family’s reactions, and watched the ripple effect made in social media and in each community we traveled to.

“I knew we were on to something good.”

Every year since, Trip and his team have been surprising high school seniors at their homes, schools, and places of work to let them know that they’ve been admitted to Butler–in person and live on social media, with thousands of followers sharing in the moment. Now entering its fifth year, the initiative has grown rapidly and delivered surprises to hundreds of high schoolers across 17 states.

These carefully crafted visits require days of preparation, cooperation from co-conspiring admission counselors, parents, teachers, and a full gas tank to keep the Butler Blue Mobile trekking. But the efforts are worth it, as students who receive a visit from Trip are more likely to enroll at Butler than those who don’t. And the reach extends beyond just those who receive a personal surprise. The goal, Kaltenmark says, is to capture student and family reaction and then feature it on social media so prospective students miles away might be inclined to apply.

The decades-old tradition of checking the mailbox for the large envelope is slowly changing. In fact, 92 percent of high school seniors now say they prefer to receive most communications from colleges–including the “you’ve been admitted’ announcement–online. And in an ever-competitive market, where the number of college-bound high school students is declining, university admissions and marketing departments must get creative to stand out.

Enter Trip.

Six years in, the #ButlerBound program has completely changed the “I got in!” daydream for hopeful Butler applicants. That daydream now includes a knock on the door and a little bit of dog drool.

The Impact

Students who receive a personal visit from Trip are 25-30 percent likely to end up enrolling—much higher than the University’s standard 10-15 percent yield rate.

“We know a visit from the dog probably won’t take a ‘no’ to a ‘yes’,” Kaltenmark says. “But it causes families to take a closer look at Butler. We’ve had parents tell us that we went from fifth on their son’s list to first, just because of our visit.”

The visits create a reason for some lighthearted celebration–much needed during what can otherwise be an extremely stressful time, says Director of Admission DJ Menifee.

“We know how serious the college decision-making process is for families,” Menifee says. “This campaign lets them put their guard down and just enjoy the experience.”

The program is also a morale booster for the admission staff. Whitney Ramsay, Assistant Director of Admission, has helped coordinate many student visits.

“I feel like I’m a Publisher’s Clearinghouse employee,” she laughs. “I’m able to truly witness a student’s admission to Butler University, in a way that only a Butler admission counselor can. It’s so rewarding to see students who I’ve come to know through the application process receive that big surprise.”

The broader Butler community of students, alumni, and faculty and staff support the campaign each year, helping to welcome each student on social media. Kaltenmark doesn’t think the original idea caught any of them by surprise, though.

“I think Butler folks almost expected this sort of thing from us,” he says. “It’s just indicative of who we are as an institution.”

But outside of Butler?

“People were immediately captivated,” he says. “It’s a really simple concept, but the idea was fresh and innovative in higher education. We started turning heads and got the attention of a lot of people.”

The heads that turned included those at local and national media outlets. In 2017, the campaign was featured on NBC Nightly News and the front pages of the Wall Street Journal and the Indianapolis Star. The initiative has also won two Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) awards for its innovative use of social media, a prestigious honor in the world of higher education marketing.

And remember that “ripple effect?”

Since 2014, applications to Butler have increased by nearly 70 percent, with particularly significant out-of-state growth. In the last three years alone, the University has welcomed its two largest incoming first-year classes ever.

“We leave these families in awe. They go tell five other families about their experience. Each student shares it on his or her own social media platforms and their classmates all see it,” Kaltenmark says. “Each visit is about much more than just the student we’re seeing.”

The Planning

The number one question about the program is a tough one to answer.

“People want to know how we select students for visits,” Kaltenmark says. “And there are a lot of factors at play. It’s very time-consuming.”

Geography plays a huge role in the planning process, he says. The team seeks to visit as many students as possible on any given day, to maximize resources. So. students who live near Indianapolis or in highly-populated areas with lots of other applicants have a natural advantage. Those who happen to live in a market that coincides with an away basketball game or a Big Dawgs Tour stop also have better-than-average odds.

In many ways, Kaltenmark says, some luck and a certain amount of randomness is involved.

But over the years, the level of sophistication behind-the-scenes has grown, too. Butler’s admission and marketing teams work side-by-side to make this seemingly grassroots campaign operate like a well-oiled machine. A massive amount of student data is collected and combed through, with flagging processes set up to identify prospective students who could be good candidates for a personal visit. Admission counselors know which cues to look for as they spend time reading each student’s application individually (yes, all 16,000+ of them), and inbound requests from alumni, current students, and faculty and staff are documented and shared at a rapid pace, so that the let’s-go-visit-this-student alarm can be sounded as quickly as possible.

And while the team gets to enjoy watching each visit unfold online alongside the rest of the world, their work doesn’t stop when the livestream ends. There are social media posts to draft and videos to edit and metrics to collect and report out.

And more students to visit.

“We enjoy the moment, for sure,” Kaltenmark says. “It’s personally very rewarding to play such an active role like this. But then we get back to work.”

The Hurdles

Just like all well-orchestrated events, the #ButlerBound campaign presents its own unique challenges.

“Once, we went to the wrong home,” Kaltenmark says. “We were at the neighbor’s house knocking on the door until he came out and pointed us in the right direction. Of course, that was the year we had started using Facebook Live, so thousands of people were laughing at us.”

The team has learned to troubleshoot other issues over time.

“Five years in, Trip has this drill pretty much down pat,” he says. “But we still try to keep him away from balloon bouquets. And cats.”

In 2016, the program suffered its greatest challenge to date. Trip was sidelined with an ACL injury and couldn’t make the rounds. But rather than cancel visits, the team called in for backup from Trip’s great nieces and nephews, 10-week old English bulldog puppies who shared the same lineage. Some particularly lucky students opened their doors that year to find upwards of six puppies on their front porch, sporting oversized Butler gear, overexcited personalities, and more puppy rolls than one can imagine.

The one challenge that’s remained constant throughout the years? Operating on a shoestring budget.

“We’re really frugal in this campaign. We have to be,” Kaltenmark says. “We drive ourselves or try to hitch a ride on the team charter when we’re traveling with the team. We all share one hotel room, Trip included. We have to be really creative.”

Looking Ahead

A lot has changed since year one.

“After the first round of visits, President Jim Danko asked me if we could ‘just get 30 dogs’,” says Kaltenmark, laughing.

And while the number of mascots didn’t change, the number of student visits has. In 2015, the team delivered nearly 100 surprises in multiple states, more than three times the number visited in 2014. That pace has remained steady ever since.

In 2017, a Marketing Specialist was added to the team to help with the live mascot program’s growing needs. Butler graduate Evan Krauss now handles the bulk of the planning efforts and joins Kaltenmark and Trip on the road.

Later that year, Facebook Live became a part of the equation, allowing social media followers to join in on each and every surprise.

In September 2018, the team began visiting graduate students admitted to the Lacy School of Business’s new Master of Science in Risk and Insurance program.

But with all of these enhancements, the team has made sure the bread-and-butter of the concept remains unchanged.

“We’re two guys who graduated from Butler, rolling up with a dog in an official mascot sweater to deliver exciting news in person,” Kaltenmark says. “We’re like Butler missionaries spreading the Bulldog gospel.”

Looking ahead, Kaltenmark says people can expect the annual tradition to continue. The program has become an integral component of the University’s enrollment and brand awareness strategies.

“If anything, we’re now just looking for ways to continue to evolve things and one-up ourselves,” he says. “Who knows what’s next?”


Media contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications

Butler Bound


The Untold Story of the #ButlerBound Program

How a Bulldog changed the “I got in!” moment for Butler students.

Oct 23 2018 Read more
Arts & CulturePeopleCampus

On Butler's Curling Team, the Students Sweep Together


PUBLISHED ON Feb 12 2018

By Jackson Borman '20

The history of curling can be traced back 500 years to the frozen lochs of Scotland.

The history of curling at Butler University is a bit more recent.

It all started with a group of Butler students who were inspired by the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics to try curling for the first time. At first, they were just joking around on the ice, but eventually they bought their own shoes and brooms and in 2012 started Butler’s very own club curling team.

Fast forward eight years. Jacqueline Murphy '20, is the president of Butler’s club curling team. She was inspired to join during her freshman year because of her own background with the sport.

Murphy said that in her home town of South Bend, Indiana, curling is all the rage.

“Curling is the number one sport for student participation at Notre Dame right now,” Murphy said. “It takes places on a certain night of the week and they will have tons of students turn out just to go curling.”

Murphy and her father were always interested in joining in on the fun, but they never did.

Once she got to Butler and saw that there was a curling team, she felt she had to join. She and some friends decided to go to a meeting and try it out.

“When I told my family that I was the president of the curling club they were like, ‘Uhh what?’” Murphy said. “It’s a weird sport, you know? You never hear people say that they love to go curling.”

Last year there were only seven members of the team including Murphy, and they did not have enough members to compete. This year, the club more than quadrupled in size to an impressive 30 members. With this many people, the team now has enough members to participate in tournaments, which are known as bonspiels.

While this year's team has enough people to compete, Murphy said that they are just working on the basics.

“No one that came out for the team this year had ever played before, except for one person, so everyone is a beginner,” Murphy said. “We really didn’t expect so many people, but it is so much fun.”

The team practices at the Circle City Curling Club, which is housed within the Indiana State Fairgrounds, a 10-minute drive from campus. They meet every Thursday night and practice by playing in tournaments against each other.

While the team practices, the executive team members are visiting and researching different bonspiels that the team could compete in next year. The club was invited to compete at University of Colorado and University of Oklahoma, but there are other tournaments in Chicago and Minnesota that the team is considering as well.

As far as the team roster goes, Murphy said she is just going with the flow. Anyone can invite a friend to join the team, and even staff and faculty are welcome to join in the fun. Joey Calvillo, Butler’s Residence Life Coordinator, is a member of the team.

Calvillo said that he is always glued to his TV during the Winter Olympics. When he saw a blurb in the Butler Connection about a meeting for the curling club, he reached out to the executive members of the team to see if he could tag along.

While Calvillo is still a novice, he said that the most exciting part of the club is seeing students leading the charge and getting out of their comfort zone.

“I got into student affairs so that I could work with students and be around students, and it has been really awesome to be there and see them in their element and also just to be an active participant,” he said. “That’s been the great part: seeing it from a staff member’s perspective of getting students connected to something that they wouldn’t have possibly done outside of here. I think that’s one great thing about Butler in general; they provide so many of those types of experiences that students would not have been able to access [otherwise].”

The next big event for the team (outside of weekly practices) is a viewing party to watch the 2018 PyeongChang, South Korea, Winter Olympics. Their emphasis is sure to be on one sport in particular.




Arts & CulturePeopleCampus

On Butler's Curling Team, the Students Sweep Together

Curling club members show they have the stones needed to compete.

Feb 12 2018 Read more

Hinkle Magic in Unexpected Places

by Sally Perkins

As we celebrate 90 years of Hinkle, we asked professional storyteller and adjunct professor Sally Perkins to share a few stories from its illustrious history. Sally is the creator and performer of “Keeping Hinkle Hinkle,” a story commissioned by Storytelling Arts of Indiana and Indiana Landmarks in honor of Butler receiving the Cook Cup Award for its historically accurate restoration of Hinkle Fieldhouse in 2014.

* * *

What six-year-old wouldn’t want to see Hinkle’s center court from a bird’s eye view??

After all, from one of the 10 trusses that hold up the building, you could see so many “Hinkle Magic” moments: Bobby Plump’s famous last shot in the 1954 Milan High School championship game; the 1955/1956 Attucks High School back-to-back championship games; Butler’s buzzer beater win over Gonzaga in 2013; Butler’s upset win over Villanova in 2017.

And so many not-so-famous “Hinkle Magic” moments: when the women’s team had to fight for their fair share of court time in 1976; when a Butler cheerleader’s boyfriend proposed to her on the Bulldog on center court; when average fans and hundreds of their children got to play on the court, no questions asked, after basketball games.

So many “Hinkle Magic” moments have occurred on that legendary court. But “Hinkle Magic” moments have also occurred in other less expected spaces of the fieldhouse as well…

Up High

Tony HinkleCountless people can tell you they’ve run around that track on the second level of the fieldhouse. But not everyone can say that from that track they successfully distracted Tony Hinkle from his work.

Back in the 1920s, through the 1970s, when Tony Hinkle was the basketball coach … and the football coach … and the baseball coach … and the Athletic Director … and a teacher … he was un-distractible. After all, it takes a person of focus to manage all those roles.

But one day he got distracted.

In the 1930s, Tony Hinkle typically came to the fieldhouse on Sunday afternoons to review film from the previous day’s game. Often he brought his daughter Patty with him. She thought the fieldhouse was her private playground.

One particular Sunday when Patty was about 6-years-old, she roller skated up and down the ramps, got bored with that, then decided she wanted to see what center court looked like …  from a bird’s eye view.

So Patty went up to the track on the second level and started crawling up one of the trusses, getting herself half way to center court. That’s way up there.

Now every so often, Mr. Hinkle thought he should probably check up on his daughter Patty. So he started looking around the fieldhouse. When he couldn’t find Patty, he stepped into the arena.

Maybe he heard a sound; maybe he just moved his head the right way, but he looked up and there he saw his 6-year-old daughter, like a sloth crawling out to center court. Gulp.

Lucky for Patty, her father wasn’t, well, Bobby Knight. Mr. Hinkle knew that yelling at Patty would likely scare her to her death. So he called the fire department who raced over to the fieldhouse with a net.

But Patty thought to herself, “Eh, if I can get myself out here, I can get myself back.” So she started crawling backwards along the truss, sliding down its arc until she landed on her feet, on the track … right across from her father. Patty stared at her father’s feet.

They stood in silence for a long time.

Until finally Mr. Hinkle said, “You got guts, don’t ya, kid?”  

He never said another word. And he never told her mother. A secret “Hinkle Magic” moment Patty and her father shared for the rest of their lives.

But that wasn’t the only time something on that track distracted Tony Hinkle.

On Track

In 1946, Charlie McElfresh—a man who was tiny enough to be a horse jockey—came to the fieldhouse when Mr. Hinkle hired him to be his equipment manager. Frankly, it was a low-paying job, but Charlie knew it meant his kids could come to Butler tuition-free. So he took the job and spent the next 33 years of his life down in the bowels of the fieldhouse in the equipment cage, which isn’t so unlike a jail cell: crowded, dark, cramped … odorous.

But Charlie rather preferred life down there. He always had a 6-inch cigarette holder hanging out of his mouth as he washed and dried every football, basketball, and baseball uniform, game after game after game.

Now if you met Charlie, you might wonder if he liked the athletes. Or any humans, for that matter.

His rather crass nature was especially obvious one day in the 1970s when the men’s basketball team went to Omaha for a game against Creighton. On this rare occasion, Charlie got to travel with the team.

The coaches and Charlie stayed up a little too late on Friday night in Charlie’s room playing poker. The next morning, all the team members and coaches were gathered for breakfast in the hotel lobby as the players all stuffed themselves with scrambled eggs and bacon before the game. But Charlie was nowhere to be seen.

One of the players asked, “Where’s Charlie?”

Knowing how small Charlie McElfresh was, one of the tallest players on the team, John Dunn, joked, “Heh. Heh. Maybe he couldn’t figure out how to jump out of his bed this morning!”

They all laughed and hollered until John Dunn happened to turn around, and there he stood face-to-face (well, chest-to-face) with Charlie, who barked, “Wash your own damn clothes, Dunn.”

And John Dunn did have to wash his own clothes for the next three weeks until Charlie was ready to forgive him. Charlie was nobody’s servant down there in the equipment cage.

But Charlie McElfresh was looking out for those boys. Whenever he thought Mr. Hinkle’s practices had gone on too long or that Mr. Hinkle was being too tough on the boys, Charlie would put on a giant cowboy hat he had in his equipment cage. Then he’d hop onto an old banana seat bicycle that was hanging around in the fieldhouse. He’d ride that bicycle up the ramp to the second floor where he’d ride around and around the track, wearing that huge cowboy hat until everyone would look at him and laugh. Finally, Mr. Hinkle would say, “Alright, alright Charlie. I get it. I get it.” And practice would end.

So once again, the un-distractible Tony Hinkle was distracted by a “Hinkle Magic” moment on that track on the second floor.

Down Low

Charlie McElfreshThere are a lot of Charlie McElfresh “Hinkle Magic” moments. Most occurred away from public view, deep down in the equipment cage, in the depths of Hinkle Fieldhouse.

Back in 1976, when the United States was celebrating its bicentennial, Barry Collier was a student athlete at Butler, mourning the loss of his final basketball game his senior year. It was an away game. So when the team got back to Butler the bus pulled into the fieldhouse parking lot, and the boys were told to go turn in their uniforms.

The team members all trudged down, down, down to the equipment cage. Barry lingered behind the rest of the team. Finally, with his chin sagging to his chest, he tossed his uniform into the bin and took some melancholy steps out of the equipment cage.

Suddenly he heard a raspy voice behind him say, “Check the ice machine before ya leave.”

Barry spun around. “What? What, Charlie?”


“Uh, alright. Alright. Sure, Charlie.”

So Barry walked over and opened the refrigerator door. In the ice box sat a single item: a brown paper bag with a six-pack of Stroh’s beer.

Barry spun around to say, “thank-“ but Charlie was gone. He smiled, took out the six-pack, and went to find a fellow senior teammate to share it with.

A “Hinkle Magic” moment from Charlie McElfresh.

Four years after Barry Collier graduated, on a September Sunday in 1980, Charlie McElfresh was washing and drying football uniforms when he had a heart attack and died in that equipment cage. That cigarette holder hanging out of his mouth.

He wouldn’t have wanted to have been anyplace else.

Why? Because Hinkle Fieldhouse is filled with “Hinkle Magic.” If you look hard enough and listen to enough stories, you’ll find that magic not just on the court, but in the nooks and crannies, the bowels and cages, the tracks and bleachers … and mostly in the hearts of the people who dedicate their souls to one another in that special space we call Hinkle Fieldhouse.


Hinkle Magic in Unexpected Places

If these walls could talk…oh, the stories they would tell.


Butler Blue IV, next live mascot for Butler, revealed, ready to report to work

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Jan 22 2020

It’s a cold December morning in downtown Indianapolis, and the Fountain Square Animal Clinic is about to open.

A red jeep pulls into the parking lot, and out hops a 14-week-old french bulldog. He trots with his owner into the Clinic. A few more cars pull in. Two cats head inside, followed by a lab mix.

Then, a white Toyota RAV4 pulls right up to the Clinic’s front door, bypassing the whole parking thing. A man and a woman emerge from the car, grab a plastic Bella Storage Solution 67-liter bin, and hurry inside. It’s impossible to see through the bin, as layers of blankets cover the sides.

No one knows it at the time, but about an hour later, it becomes official: The bin is holding the next Butler University live mascot, Butler Blue IV.

That day in December, Butler Blue IV was a six-week-old, five pound, American Kennel Club-Registered English Bulldog puppy in a bin with his two sisters. After full-body x-rays, shots, and a close examination by clinic owner Kurt Phillips ‘92, it was determined that the next live mascot would be this dog. Phillips, who delivered the three siblings on October 30, 2019, was in the room with breeders Jodi and Cameron Madaj, as well as current mascot handler Michael Kaltenmark (who owns Butler Blue III “aka Trip”), and the next live mascot handler, Evan Krauss.

The decision marked the end of a process much longer than a one-hour vet appointment. It was a journey that technically started in December 2018, when Kaltenmark, Krauss, and Phillips determined it would be best for Trip to retire at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year due to his older age and long tenure on the job.

But it also marked the beginning of the next phase of preparations for introducing a new live mascot. Now, about a month later, the puppy who snuck into the clinic in a plastic bin has grown into a 12-week-old, 20 pound dog. He has experienced more of the mascot lifestyle—posing for photo shoots, growing out of two Butler jerseys, and listening to a cranked-up Butler fight song on repeat to simulate a raucous Hinkle Fieldhouse. He’s also been exposed to many different people, taken trips to Home Depot, and grown used to the sound of banging pots and pans.

But Blue has also been adjusting to, well, life. He moved away from his two sisters and mother into his new home at 10 weeks old. He’s learning to go to the bathroom outside, and how to walk on a leash.

Butler Blue IV has lived in near anonymity since he was born in October. But as the new mascot-in-training until he takes over full-time when Trip retires in May, the days of being toted around in secret bins are about to be long gone.


How it all began

It was December 2018, and Butler Blue III “aka Trip” had recently turned seven. Kaltenmark and Krauss took him to the vet’s office to see Phillips. Trip was in good health, but Phillips said it would be best if they didn’t push him past his eighth season.

“Trip has been great, and he had no chronic or recurring health issues, but we wanted to make sure we didn’t push him too far,” Phillips says.

In May, Kaltenmark and Krauss sat down and solidified a succession plan. But it didn’t exactly start with talking about Trip and the next dog. Instead, the plan focused on Kaltenmark—the man who has overseen Butler’s live mascot program for 16 years.



At first, Kaltenmark was excited to start again with Butler Blue IV. But the more he thought about it, the more he realized it might be best for him to take a step back.

“I have been married for 16 years, and I’ve been the mascot handler for 16 years,” he says. “My boys are getting older, and they have schedules that compete with the mascot’s schedule.”

Then there was the kidney diagnosis. Kaltenmark was first told in December 2018 that his kidneys were failing. He needed a transplant. He received one from his brother in early January 2020.

“It just made sense to get out of my own way and hand this on to someone who is extremely prepared and ready for this, and that is Evan,” says Kaltenmark, who still plans to stay very involved in the live mascot program after the 2019-2020 academic year.

Once the team settled on a handler, it was time to start looking for the next dog.

Kaltenmark and Krauss relied on Phillips to identify potential litters of bulldog puppies. Phillips interviewed several breeders. He also conducted pre-breeding exams that took health, temperament, and timing into consideration.

They went through about four or five litters, but none of the puppies quite fit what they needed in terms of health and timing. Then, the Madajs entered the picture.


How to find a dog

Jodi Madaj has always been a dog person.

Growing up in Danville, Illinois, she would find stray dogs and bring them to her grandparents’ house. At times there would be eight, nine, even 10 dogs there, all courtesy of Madaj.

That love of dogs has not waned. Madaj, her husband, and their two kids have had basset hounds, boxers, and german boxers, but her son always wanted a bulldog. So, in 2003, Madaj and her husband bought a bulldog puppy, put it in a box with a bow on top, and gave it to their son as a Christmas present. In 2011, they got another: Phoebe, also known as Trip’s sister. Phoebe had puppies in 2013, and the Madajs, of course, kept two of the puppies.

“I am more of a collector than a breeder,” Madaj says.

One of those puppies, Trixie, had a litter of seven in 2016. One of those puppies, Violet, would end up becoming the mother of Butler Blue IV.

Madaj also has a love for Butler. Her kids grew up going to camps at the University, and her son played soccer there. Sixteen years ago, her love of Butler and bulldogs led her to strike up a conversation with Kaltenmark, and she has been bringing pre-game treats for Butler’s live mascots ever since.

When Madaj heard that Trip was retiring, she thought about donating a puppy from Violet’s litter.

“I wanted to donate a dog if I had a healthy dog,” Madaj says. “I wanted to do it because I thought it was the right thing to do.”

Violet gave birth to three healthy puppies on October 30, 2019. But, it was not immediately clear if one would be the next Butler mascot.

The puppies were fed every two hours around the clock for the first three weeks. Madaj slept right next to Violet on the couch every single night. For the first six weeks, Madaj never left the puppies alone.

Then, there was the secret part of it all. Madaj told her kids, but not her mother, hiding Violet in the bedroom when her mother came over.

“She has a big mouth,” Madaj says.

All three of Violet’s puppies ended up being healthy. But during the six-week-old visit with Phillips is December, he decided that one of them stuck out. One of the puppies had a respiratory problem, and the other was a bit aggressive. The third was just right.

“There’s a lot to consider with bulldogs, and we looked at everything,” says Phillips, who has been involved with caring for the Butler mascot since he volunteered to give back to his alma mater in the form of vet care for the first bulldog. “He will be awesome. He is a super cool puppy. He is super easy going and not aggressive at all. Everything fell in line with this dog.”

Madaj agrees.

“He is special,” Madaj says. “When you spend basically 24 hours a day with a dog for three months, you get to know him really well. It will be really hard to leave him, but I know he is going to a great cause—to represent a wonderful institution.”

Madaj, who ended up keeping one of the three puppies, texts Krauss all the time, reminding him not to pick up Blue by the back legs. When Krauss came to pick up Blue in mid-January, she gave him a laminated binder full of instructions, and she cried. About 20 minutes after Krauss left, Madaj texted to see how everything was going.


Everything is new

Butler Blue IV isn’t the only one adjusting to a new life. Krauss, the new mascot handler, is adjusting, too.

Krauss has never owned a dog in his life. When he was growing up, the Krausses were—you guessed it—cat people. Krauss is allergic to dogs, which sometimes even causes him to throw up.

But that didn’t stop him. He would ask his parents for a dog for his birthday, Christmas, New Year’s—every single holiday. Then, when his older sister became a Butler  cheerleader and Krauss started going to every basketball game, the team he fell in love with had a dog as their mascot.

“It was the coolest thing ever,” Krauss says. “My Verizon flip phone background was Blue II.”

In his sophomore year at Butler, Krauss applied to join the Butler Blue Crew. The student group helped Kaltenmark with the mascot program, filming video of Trip or assisting at events. Krauss had to lie during his interview when asked if he was allergic to dogs.

After graduation, Krauss joined Kaltenmark’s team permanently to manage the day-to-day operations of the Butler Blue live mascot program.

Now, he is taking over handler duties. The spare bedroom of his apartment is stocked with dog toys, a crate, and food. He checked all his house plants to make sure they weren’t poisonous for animals.

And then there’s the whole new parent thing. Krauss called Kaltenmark when he thought Blue’s stool was a little soft. Kaltenmark assured him it was normal for a puppy, but he brought it to the vet to be sure. Then there was the time Blue’s face turned a bit red after some shots. So, Krauss called the vet, who assured him it was normal, and Kaltenmark brought benadryl over.

“This is my dream come true,” he says. “It is certainly an adjustment, but I couldn’t be more grateful and honored to have this opportunity.”

Butler Blue IV will officially be introduced to the community at his first basketball game on Friday, January 24. Until taking over as full-time mascot at the end of the academic year, he’ll be meeting students, adjusting to his home, and learning how to be the Butler Bulldog.

But behind the scenes, he will focus on going to the bathroom outside, socializing with other dogs, and the adjustment to life without his siblings. It’s an adjustment for everyone.

Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications
914-815-5656 (cell)


Butler Blue IV, next live mascot for Butler, revealed, ready to report to work

12-week-old English Bulldog set to take the reins as Butler’s fourth live mascot

Jan 22 2020 Read more

Butler Board of Trustees Elects Seven New Members


PUBLISHED ON Oct 04 2017

The Butler University Board of Trustees has elected seven new members—six of whom are Butler alumni.

The new trustees are Alex Anglin, Jana Fuelberth, Chris Gahl, Robin Lauth, Tom Mathers, Bill Soards, and Brian Stemme.

The trustees, who meet three times a year, are charged with fiscal and strategic oversight and governance of Butler University.

More about each new member follows.

Alex Anglin ’10Alexander A. “Alex” Anglin ’10 is a Consultant within Eli Lilly and Company’s API Manufacturing Finance division. He joined the company in 2014 and has served as a Senior Analyst and Associate Consultant in Lilly’s Corporate Audit Services and Corporate Financial Planning functions.

He earned a B.S. in Accounting and is a Certified Public Accountant. While at Butler, Anglin was a member of the men’s basketball team under Coach Brad Stevens as well as a member of the Spring Sports Spectacular Executive Board, an organization raising funds and awareness for Special Olympics Indiana.

He has formally served on the YMCA of Greater Indianapolis Avondale Meadows Advisory Board. Currently, he serves on the Indiana CPA Society’s Diversity Initiatives Council and is an MBA Prep Class of 2018 Fellow with Management Leadership for Tomorrow, an organization that equips high-potential minority professionals with the skills necessary to lead organizations and communities worldwide.

His sister Kymbrielle Anglin ’08 is a Butler alumna. His wife, Lindsey ’11, is a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office. She earned a B.A. in Electronic Media/Broadcast Journalism from Butler’s College of Communication in 2011 and obtained her JD from IU McKinney School of Law in 2014. While at Butler, she was a member of the women’s track and field team.


Jana Fuelberth ’10Jana E. Fuelberth ’10 is President and Co-Founder of, a human capital management analytics company that helps employers make data-driven people decisions by combining HR and business data. She is also the Co-Founder of HireCredit, an employer tax credit processor. Jana currently serves as Partner in Beyond Payroll.

She earned a B.S. in Marketing. She was a Butler Business Scholar, as well as a member of Kappa Alpha Theta and the Podium Expressions Program Board of the Student Government Association. She serves on the Young Alumni Board of Directors and is a current member of the Indianapolis Zoo Council.

Fuelberth has numerous family ties to Butler. Her brother, Ben Fuelberth, earned a B.S. in Marketing in 2008, and her sister-in-law Kate (Fuson) earned a B.S. in Elementary Education in 2008. Her late grandfather Robert “Bud” Laue (d. 1993) earned a B.S. in Business Administration from Butler in 1949.


Chris Gahl ’00Chris Gahl ’00 earned a B.S. in Radio/TV. He has been Senior Vice President, Marketing and Communications for Visit Indy, the marketing organization for the city of Indianapolis, since 2005. He is a former member of Butler’s Young Alumni Board of Directors and Alumni Board of Directors. He also has spoken at the University Convocation for the past few years.

A member of the 2012 Super Bowl Host Committee, Gahl helped spearhead promotion and media relations for Super Bowl XLVI. Previously, he was co-owner of a marketing firm in Hawaii, helping various tourism clients in the islands.

In 2013, Gahl was named a “40 Under 40” business leader by the Indianapolis Business Journal. In 2014, he was a member of the Stanley K. Lacy Leadership Class. In 2015, he co-chaired the city’s Plan 2020 Love Indy committee. In 2016, he helped launch the city’s Film Indy initiative, helping attract TV and film-related production to Indy.

Gahl serves on the St. Vincent Foundation Board of Directors and the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library Board of Directors. He and his wife, Catherine (Dunaway) ’99, have two sons.


Robin (Robertson) Lauth ’77, MS ’82Robin S. (Robertson) Lauth ’77, MS ’82 earned her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Education. As an undergraduate, she was a member of Kappa Alpha Theta, the cheerleading squad, and was voted Homecoming Queen.

Lauth is President of the Lauth Family Foundation, Inc. She previously owned and managed the first three free-standing Vera Bradley retail stores and was an elementary school teacher at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. She is Vice President of the Lake Maxincuckee Association and a member of the Junior League.

Her husband, Bob, is Chairman of Lauth Group, Inc., a national real estate development construction company based in Carmel, Indiana.


Tom MathersThomas “Tom” Mathers is the Founder and Chairman of Déclion Holdings, a biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of innovative treatments for neurodegenerative diseases. Prior to Déclion, Tom was the President and CEO of CoLucid Pharmaceuticals, Inc., which focused on the development of lasmiditan for the acute treatment of migraine headaches. Eli Lilly and Company acquired CoLucid in March 2017 for $960 million.

Prior to joining CoLucid, Mathers was President and CEO of Peptimmune, Inc.; President and CEO of Cell Based Delivery, Inc.; Vice President and General Manager of Cardion AG; and Vice President of Strategic Development at Genzyme. For nine years, he has served on the Board of Directors for the Biotechnology Industry Organization where he is active in the policy areas of capital formation, bioethics, intellectual property, and regulatory policy.

Mathers earned a B.S. in Engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1988. He went on to serve as a Captain in the United States Army and received several medals for his service as an AH-64 Apache helicopter pilot during the Gulf War.

Mathers and his wife, Michele, have two children, Savannah ‘20 (COPHS) and Tucker. Savannah is in Butler’s new Healthcare and Business degree program and is a member of Butler’s cheerleading squad and Delta Gamma sorority. Tucker graduated from Tufts with a degree in International Security and Arabic, and was the captain of the men’s lacrosse team, winning two NCAA National Championships.


Bill Soards II ’96Bill Soards II ’96 has been President of AT&T Indiana since October 2013. In this role, he is responsible for external affairs for AT&T in the state, including state and local government relations, community affairs, regulatory and legislative activities, and initiatives before the Indiana General Assembly and the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission.

He earned a B.S. in Telecommunications from Butler’s Jordan College of the Arts. He was awarded the Hilton U. Brown Alumni Achievement Award in 2004 and was also named to Butler’s “50 Under 50” list that same year. As a student, he was a member of the Delta Tau Delta fraternity. He is also a past member of the Young Alumni Council and the Alumni Engagement Sub-Committee.

Soards’ family ties to Butler run deep. His mother, Mary Lu  Schroeder Pennington, earned both a B.S. and M.S. in Education from Butler’s College of Education in 1990 and 1994 respectively; she is associated with the class of 1967. His stepfather, Kenneth Pennington, also earned his B.S. and M.S. from Butler’s College of Education. Pennington played basketball for Butler under Coach Tony Hinkle and is a member of the BU Athletic Hall of Fame. His wife, Ann (Fulkerson) ’95, earned a B.A. in Journalism.


Brian A. Stemme ’91Brian A. Stemme ’91 is the Project Director for BioCrossroads, , a non-profit organization which stimulates the continued growth of Indiana’s life sciences industry by investing in life sciences businesses and public-private partnerships, connecting   local companies with resources and building awareness of the industry.  As Project Director, Stemme works to identify and develop opportunities for growth within Indiana’s sector, evaluate early-stage companies for BioCrossroads’ venture capital fund and support the State’s efforts to attract and grow life sciences companies. He is a Board member of biotechnology companies Algaeon and Allinaire, and a co-founder of Indy Science Connect.  Prior to BioCrossroads, he worked for Eli Lilly and Company and Arthur Andersen.

Stemme earned his B.S. in Accounting with Honors from Butler and was selected for the Top 100 Outstanding Students Program and a member of President Bannister’s inaugural Council on Presidential Affairs. He was a member of the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity. He is a past Trustee and a former Alumni Board President.

Stemme’s wife, Britt, is a domestic relations mediator. Brian and Britt have four children: Kathryn, a junior at the University of Louisville; Mark and Rachel, twins who are seniors in high school; and Frances, an eighth-grader.

Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler Board of Trustees Elects Seven New Members

The Butler University Board of Trustees has elected seven new members—six of whom are Butler alumni.

Oct 04 2017 Read more
The space designed to inspire collaboration between LSB and the business community is now open.
Butler BeyondCampusCommunity

New Building for Lacy School of Business Ready to Serve Butler and Indy Community


PUBLISHED ON Aug 14 2019

INDIANAPOLIS—The new building for Butler University’s Andre B. Lacy School of Business (LSB) is officially open.

After nearly two years of construction, the 110,000-square-foot building is now ready to serve a student population on the rise, along with the local, regional, and national business community.

The building is central to Butler’s 2020 strategic vision to make the University a leader in business, innovation, technology, and student-centered experiences that prepare graduates to pursue fulfilling careers and make a positive impact.

“It is a physical manifestation of a culture in which faculty and staff work in true partnerships with business leaders for the benefit of our students,” says LSB Dean Steve Standifird.



With a curriculum steeped in hands-on experience, adaptability, and student-faculty engagement, LSB has grown its enrollment by 60 percent in the last five years. As a result, the new building is about six times larger than the business school’s previous home in the Holcomb Building. LSB will serve 1,150 undergraduate business students this year.

The building will also be home to Butler’s Career and Professional Success office, which serves the entire Butler student body and includes the FirstPerson Interview Suite, featuring private interview rooms, work space, and a lounge for recruiters.

The $50 million building is complete, but fundraising efforts are ongoing as the University seeks to name the building. Support for the project has come from both the Butler community and beyond. Four of the top donors to date are not Butler graduates, but they invested due to their belief that LSB is making a strong impact on the Indianapolis business community. 

The Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business, for example, connects local businesses with resources and advisors. And the Butler Business Consulting Group works directly with companies to solve business challenges.

The building will allow such partnerships to expand and will foster new program offerings, new centers, and new relationships with employers and business leaders. The Innovation Commons space, for example, was modeled after The Speak Easy spaces in Indianapolis and designed to facilitate collaborations between LSB and business community members. The new building’s cafe was added to encourage visitors to stay.

“Our goal was to create a space where there is no line between where the classroom ends and the business community begins,” Standifird says.

“Andre and Julia Lacy had an incredible philanthropic vision,” said Butler President James Danko. “They wanted to enrich learning experiences for young people; support experiential curricula that emphasize family-run businesses, innovation, and leading with integrity; and to invest in our city and state. We are honored to carry out the legacy they intended. I only wish they were here to see their vision come to fruition and to see how excited Butler students are about learning in this extraordinary new building.”


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications



Innovations in Teaching and Learning

One of the distinguishing features of a Butler education has always been the meaningful and enduring relationships between our faculty and students. Gifts to this pillar during Butler Beyond will accelerate our commitment to investing in faculty excellence by adding endowed positions, supporting faculty scholarship and research, renovating and expanding state-of-the-art teaching facilities, and more. Learn more, make a gift, and read other stories like this one at

The space designed to inspire collaboration between LSB and the business community is now open.
Butler BeyondCampusCommunity

New Building for Lacy School of Business Ready to Serve Butler and Indy Community

The space designed to inspire collaboration between LSB and the business community is now open.

Aug 14 2019 Read more
Plum Market Butler University
CampusStudent Life

After Facelift, Plum Market at C-Club Opens With Endless Options

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Nov 18 2019

INDIANAPOLIS—In a hurry, but hungry? Just in the mood for a quick snack? Looking for coffee from a local roaster? Want to order a freshly made sandwich and stay awhile?

The new Plum Market at C-Club meets all of those needs in one bright, newly renovated space. The latest dining option at Butler University officially opened on Monday, located at Atherton Union in the former C-Club location, and it aims to be all things to everyone.

“We conducted a campus dining study a year ago that was heavily influenced by student feedback,” says Vice President for Student Affairs Frank E. Ross III. “We learned a lot, but one thing became clear: We needed a place on campus that was versatile. Our campus community is busy, and everyone has different schedules and needs. We wanted a space that allowed for more flexibility.”

Plum Market at C-Club is definitely flexible. Open weekdays from 7:00 AM–midnight, and weekends from 11:00 AM–midnight, the location accepts flex dollars, Dawg Bucks, cash, and credit cards.

In addition to the longest hours on campus, Ross says the variety of food options sets Plum Market apart.

“We have worked closely with Bon Appétit to make sure we are being really responsive to the needs and wishes of the Butler community,” Ross says. “Between the chef-driven menus, the new comfortable and inviting physical space, and the array of options, we have taken dining up a notch.”

There’s coffee and tea served by local roaster Hubbard & Cravens. Freshly made donuts are sold from local craft donut company General American Donut. There are fresh fruit smoothies with various protein mix-ins available. An extensive salad bar features various vegetables, as well as a section for prepared signature salads. Then there’s the sandwich and wrap menu. Options include grilled cheese, Impossible burger, grilled chicken sandwich, Nashville hot chicken tender sandwich, and a beef burger. There are cage-free egg sandwiches, all-natural chipotle chicken burritos, chicken tenders, and crinkle-cut fries.

And that’s just one area.

To serve the needs of all community members, there’s a variety of options from Bon Appétit’s go-program. Think prepackaged snacks or sandwiches. Go-program items are prepared each morning and delivered across Butler’s campus to each dining location, says Butler Dining General Manager Joe Graves. The difference is, Plum Market has nearly triple the to-go items than other locations around campus.

“The vision is always about fresh and on-trend foods,” Graves says, “and this allows us to do that but in a way that also accounts for people’s schedules.”

There’s watermelon, hummus and chips, a turkey and bacon greek wrap, and a yogurt parfait, to name a few.

Plum Market also features various chips, energy bars, Chobani yogurt, local eggs, Dandy Breeze milk, local apple cider, and frozen foods, such as Amy’s bowls and Caulipower pizza.

Deciding which items to feature took a combination of researching the most popular items, looking at other universities, and realizing adjustments will be needed as time goes on.

“We always rely heavily on student feedback,” Graves says. “As time goes on, we will see what sells. We also look forward to hearing what our students and community members like and maybe want to see that they aren’t seeing. We will adjust as we go.”

After construction started in June 2019, the former C-Club space was completed gutted. At one point, the space was just dirt. But now, Plum Market has really come to life, Graves says, fulfilling the vision of providing a variety of food options for a population on the go, as well as space to sit down and study or hang out.

“We wanted this space to do many things, and I think we achieved that,” he says. “It was well worth the wait.”



Plum Market is hardly the only new or updated option when it comes to dining on campus this year. Here’s a look at some of the other options available:


  • Chatham Tap offers craft and import beers, along with a menu focused on a wide range of sandwiches and starters. Offerings include soup, salad, wings, pizza, burgers, and fish and chips.
  • The Butler Brew is located in the new building for the Lacy School of Business and features local Julian Roasters coffee, Illinois Street Emporium pastries, and breakfast sandwiches.
  • ResCo Dining Hall has four stations featuring locally sourced burgers and chicken.
  • Trip’s Corner Market at Apartment Village has products you can cook back at your apartment, dorm, or house.
  • Nutrition Cafe at the Health and Recreation Center features a grab-and-go setup with an emphasis on protein-heavy items.
  • Marketplace at Atherton Union is an all-you-care-to-eat cafe that offers menus inspired from cuisine found around the world.


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications


Student Access and Success

At the heart of Butler Beyond is a desire to increase student access and success, putting a Butler education within reach of all who desire to pursue it. With a focus on enhancing the overall student experience that is foundational to a Butler education, gifts to this pillar will grow student scholarships, elevate student support services, expand experiential learning opportunities, and more. Learn more, make a gift, and read other stories like this one at

Plum Market Butler University
CampusStudent Life

After Facelift, Plum Market at C-Club Opens With Endless Options

The grab-and-go dining space in Atherton Union offers flexibility in hours and variety.

Nov 18 2019 Read more
Trip - Butler Blue III

Butler Blue III To Retire At End of 2019-2020 Academic Year

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Oct 22 2019



After eight years of greeting potential students with the news of their admission to Butler University, running down bones at Hinkle Fieldhouse to officially get basketball games started, and serving as Butler’s all-around ambassador, Butler Blue III will retire at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year.

It turns out Butler Blue III, also known as Trip (short for Triple), is a lot like us humans. The American Kennel Club-registered English bulldog is hanging up his mascot duties because of his older age (for bulldogs), long tenure on the job, and desire to start the next chapter of his life.

“While he loves to work and enjoys being the Butler Bulldog, it's time,” says Trip’s caretaker and Butler’s Director of External Relations, Michael Kaltenmark. “The average lifespan of an English bulldog is 8-to-12 years, and now that Trip is entering that range, we want to make sure he gets to enjoy the simple pleasures of life as just our family dog.”

Kaltenmark and his colleagues will be working closely with Butler graduate and local veterinarian Dr. Kurt Phillips to identify Trip’s successor, Butler Blue IV. Upon arrival of Blue IV, Butler graduate and current Marketing Specialist Evan Krauss ‘16 will take over caregiving and training duties. Kaltenmark, who has devoted the last 16 years to the care of Butler Blue II and III, will still work closely with Krauss, but will primarily focus on his external relations work.

Trip has been part of Kaltenmark’s household since he was adopted in early 2012 at 7 weeks old. He will remain with the family during retirement. Kaltenmark has been on staff at Butler since graduating from the University in 2002, and he cares for Trip along with his wife Tiffany and his sons Everett (9) and Miles (5). 

But before Kaltenmark and Trip hang up the leash, they’re embarking on a farewell tour, or One Last Trip. Throughout the academic year, Trip will appear at Butler games and various events on campus, and he will even follow the Men’s Basketball team on the road to surprise several prospective students and to visit graduates.

“This year is really an opportunity for the Butler community and our fans to celebrate Trip and his service as mascot,” Kaltenmark says. “He has served Butler so admirably all of these years, and we want to send him off with a proper farewell.”

Some of Trip’s remaining highlights include stops in Chicago, Washington DC, Milwaukee, and New York. But first up is Butler’s Homecoming weekend, including Trip’s role as host of the 19th annual Butler Bulldog Beauty Contest on Saturday, October 26.

Further announcements about the arrival and debut of Butler Blue IV will be forthcoming. In the meantime, fans can continue to follow Trip and his #OneLastTrip experiences on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube.


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications
914-815-5656 (cell)

Trip - Butler Blue III

Butler Blue III To Retire At End of 2019-2020 Academic Year

After serving as the official mascot for eight years, Trip will hang up the leash to spend more time with family.

Oct 22 2019 Read more
Dance Rehearsal
Arts & CultureStudent LifeCampus

New Dance Work To Debut with More than 100 Student Dancers

BY Marc Allan

PUBLISHED ON Sep 05 2018

Dance Professor Cynthia Pratt wants to give Butler's Class of 2022 a welcome to remember. So she and four student choreographers from the Dance Department have put together a large-scale dance project that will feature the entire department performing on the grassy areas outside Irwin Library and Jordan Hall on Thursday, September 20, from 6:30-7:00 PM.

The dance will celebrate the start of the new academic year and will revolve around the themes and values of the Butler Way. The soundtrack for the dance is expected to incorporate snippets of interviews with students, faculty, and staff talking about their Butler experiences.

"I thought it would be a great opportunity for the department to welcome everyone back to campus," said Pratt, who is starting her 24th year at Butler. "The Dance Department here is significant, but many of the students don't know who we are or what we do. Even though this type of dance isn't what we're known for—we're known for ballet—I thought it would be a wonderful welcome for the whole student body, especially since we have the largest freshman class ever."

Pratt said the idea for an all-department project goes back four years, when she choreographed a dance as part of StreamLines, an outdoor art project that meshed arts and science. She said that project was tough—"they're outside, they're uncomfortable, they're hot, they're rolling around in grass, and there's stuff in that grass"—but it helped create a bond that lasted throughout their college careers.

More than 100 students will participate in the dance.

"We found in the department that when we did those large group dances, the morale in the department skyrocketed," she said. "We found that this was a really positive experience—not just for the students, but for the onlookers as well. These were really successful performances."


Media Contact:
Marc Allan

Dance Rehearsal
Arts & CultureStudent LifeCampus

New Dance Work To Debut with More than 100 Student Dancers

The outdoor performance on September 20 will celebrate the start of the new academic year.

Sep 05 2018 Read more

Butler Year in Review: The People of 2018

In March of 2018, we launched Butler Stories, a place to share news, tell tales, and engage more deeply with our community. Over the course of the year we have shared more than 100 stories about the Butler community and its impact.

People are what make Butler so extraordinary. Every day, we are reminded of just how compassionate, tenacious, and curious Bulldogs can be. From a patient’s bedside to the sideline at Hinkle, some of our most notable stories of 2018 were about some of the most exceptionable members of our Butler Family.

Here are just 5 of the top profiles of the year:


Butler Roots Run Deep

Having spent much of his youth on the sidelines of Hinkle, Campbell Donovan’s path to playing for the men’s basketball team was a dream come true for both him and his family.


Perseverance and Patients

Cancer kept Trent Tipple from officially receiving his Butler degree until May 2018, nearly 27 years after he enrolled, but that didn’t stop him from pursuing his dream to become a Neonatal physician.


Let Passion Lead You

In the spring of 1985, just days before graduating, Dave Calabro skipped his math final to announce for the first time at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The decision paid off for the man who eventually became the official voice of the Indianapolis 500.


Shelvin Mack’s Homecoming

Shelvin Mack decided to leave school early to pursue his NBA dream. 7 years into his successful professional basketball career, he’s pursuing a old dream – a Butler degree.



Award-winning reporter and current editor for Butler’s Collegian Dana Lee ’19 has written for ESPN and hobnobbed with celebrities, but it’s impossible to tell her story without bringing up her two younger siblings, Jessica and Michael, who also happen to attend Butler.


Butler Year in Review: The People of 2018

From a patient’s bedside to the sideline at Hinkle, here are some of our most notable stories of 2018.

Campus Drone

Butler Named 'Most Innovative School' In the U.S. News 2018 Rankings


PUBLISHED ON Sep 12 2017

Butler University is the only Midwest Regional University to earn the U.S. News designation as Most Innovative School, according to the magazine’s 2018 rankings released on Tuesday, September 12. For the eighth consecutive year, Butler ranks No. 2 overall among 171 Midwest Regional Universities. Butler is also recognized among the best in the nation for four co-curricular programs that enhance the educational experience for students.

U.S. News created the Most Innovative School category three years ago “so high-ranking college officials could pick schools that the public should be watching because of the cutting-edge changes being made on their campuses.” Butler has claimed the top spot in the Midwest Regional Universities category every year.

A fundamental part of the University’s strategic vision, Butler 2020, is a commitment to creativity in all aspects of the learning environment and organization. “We’ve set a course to become an innovative leader in the creation and delivery of transformative, student-centered education,” said President James M. Danko. “These rankings demonstrate that we’re living up to this commitment and that our academic peers are taking notice.”

Some notable innovation initiatives at Butler University include:

  • launching 18 new majors and 11 new minors in the past 6 years;
  • awarding 43 Innovation-Fund grants to support inventive ideas among students, faculty, and staff;
  • creating the first-of-its-kind student-run captive insurance company;
  • partnering with The Speak Easy to launch a downtown space devoted to collaboration, creativity, and learning among entrepreneurs and students; and
  • co-developing technology solutions for higher education with partners including High Alpha’s ClearScholarand

Butler’s commitment to innovation stems from its goal to prepare graduates to make a meaningful impact in the world. This year’s U.S. News rankings list Butler among the best in the nation for internships, the first-year experience, study abroad, and undergraduate research/creative projects.

Internships. Schools that make this list require or encourage students to apply what they’re learning in the classroom to the real world. Seventy-five percent of Butler students graduate having completed an internship. In the Lacy School of Business, all students are required to complete two internships.

First-Year Experience. According to U.S. News, “Many schools now build into the curriculum first-year seminars or other academic programs that bring small groups of students together with faculty or staff on a regular basis.” Through Butler’s first-year experience, students know what to expect inside and outside the classroom through peer-to-peer and faculty engagement.

Study Abroad. Programs ranked in this category are recognized for substantial academic work abroad for credit—a year, a semester, or an intensive experience equal to a course—and considerable interaction with the local culture. One-third of Butler students study abroad, and cite their experiences as some of the most transformational and enriching of their time as undergraduates.

Undergraduate Research/Creative Projects. Through the Undergraduate Research Conference—the largest in the Midwest—the Center for High Achievement and Scholarly Engagement, and the Butler Summer Institute, Butler encourages students to investigate and explore research projects alongside faculty mentors.

Media contact:
Marc Allan

Campus Drone

Butler Named 'Most Innovative School' In the U.S. News 2018 Rankings

Butler University is the only Midwest Regional University to earn the U.S. News designation as Most Innovative School, according to the magazine’s 2018 rankings released on Tuesday, September 12.

Sep 12 2017 Read more

Butler Continues Trend, Welcomes Record First-Year Class

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Aug 16 2018

INDIANAPOLIS – It happened again.

For the second time in three years, Butler University is set to welcome its largest class ever, as 1,336 first-year students prepare to begin classes on August 22.

For the second time in three years, Butler University is set to welcome its largest class ever, as 1,336 first-year students prepare to begin classes on August 22.

The class highlights a nearly 10-year trend of application growth, represents a continued increase in out-of-state enrollment, and is more diverse. While the Class of 2020 was previously the largest class, with 1,255 incoming students, Butler has been experiencing an upward trajectory in applicants since 2009. 

“Butler’s enrollment goals have aligned with the University’s strategic plan, known as Butler 2020,” says Lori Greene, Vice President for Enrollment Management. “One of the strategic growth objectives is to increase full-time, undergraduate student enrollment. This is strategic growth complemented by an investment in the student experience. We see growth also reflected in new facilities, including two new state-of-the-art residence halls, and the new Lacy School of Business building, set to open in August 2019.”

This year’s growth is hardly a one-year anomaly.

Interest in Butler has been on the rise throughout the last decade. Since 2009, applications to the University have increased by 163 percent. For example, in 2015, Butler received 9,942 applications, compared to 16,431 this year. In the last year alone, first-year applications increased more than 12 percent.

This continued demand is due to a number of strategic initiatives, says Greene.





“Over the last few years, we’ve continued to refine and target our communications, and connect with prospects earlier in a student’s high school career. We’ve also focused on building a relationship with our prospective parents throughout the process,” Greene says. “We aim to support prospective students with the type of campus events and visit programs delivered, along with providing multiple options for a student to experience campus life, talk with current students, and hear from a professor in an area of interest.”

The increase in recruitment travel and targeted marketing efforts have paid off, Greene says, as the University continues to grow its out-of-state enrollment. Sixty percent of this year’s class comes from out-of-state, with nearly 20 percent of those coming from the Chicagoland area. Since 2015, applications to Butler from out-of-state students have increased by 68 percent.

And it’s not just applications. Since 2015, the number of students choosing to enroll at Butler from out-of-state has increased by 40 percent, compared to 17 percent growth in-state. Specifically, enrollment from the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic has more than doubled since 2015.

While this year’s class hails largely from other Midwest states, California, Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Texas are quickly on the rise. Over the last few years, Greene says, Butler has embedded counselors in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast in an effort to increase the University’s visibility.

This year’s incoming class is also the most diverse, as nearly 17 percent of the class are multicultural students. This represents a 3 percentage point jump from last year. While this is a percentage that Butler would like to see increase more, Greene says, partnerships with multiple Indianapolis-based organizations, as well as other community-based organizations throughout the Midwest, have helped multicultural recruitment efforts. The goal is to keep increasing this percentage, she says. 

Despite its size, Butler’s Class of 2022 is as academically inclined as previous classes. The average GPA is 3.86, up slightly from last year. This year’s incoming class features 44 valedictorians, 20 Lilly Scholars, and about 20 percent were in the top 10 percent of their high school graduating class.

The most popular majors this year are Pre-Pharmacy (136), Exploratory Studies (103), Exploratory Business (88), and Biology (72).

The University will also welcome 86 transfer students this fall.


Media contact:

Rachel Stern


Butler Continues Trend, Welcomes Record First-Year Class

For the second time in three years, Butler University is set to welcome its largest class ever,

Aug 16 2018 Read more
For the second year in a row, Butler University is one of the nation’s best institutions for undergraduate education, according to The Princeton Review.

Butler Makes Princeton Review’s ‘The Best 385 Colleges’ For Second Straight Time

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Aug 06 2019

For the second year in a row, Butler University is one of the nation’s best institutions for undergraduate education, according to The Princeton Review.

Butler is again included in the 2020 annual The Best 385 Colleges guidebook, which showcases the schools Princeton Review recommends to college applicants. Only about 13 percent of the country’s 3,000 four-year colleges and universities are profiled in The Best 385 Colleges, which is one of the company’s most popular guides.

“We chose the 385 colleges for this edition as our ‘best’ overall, academically based on data we gathered in 2018-19 from more than 1,000 school administrators about their schools’ academic programs and offerings,” said Robert Franek, The Princeton Review’s Editor-in-Chief and lead author of the book.

In Butler’s two-page profile in the book, students highlighted the impressive student-to-faculty ratio, the willingness of professors to collaborate with students on research, and the vast study abroad offerings.

Students said innovative technology is continually being introduced into the classroom, professors are willing to support student ideas and modify lectures to support student interests, and most coursework and internships provide real-life experiences.

“Different majors have inventive requirements and classes: some science classes have semester-long research projects; one class participated in a simulated village while studying modern China; while the business school has a Real Business Experience course,” the guidebook says.

Students highlighted the welcoming and accepting student body, along with the inclusive Butler culture.

The best 385 colleges are not ranked hierarchically. Published annually since 1992, the book features detailed descriptions of each college, including admission and graduation rates, as well as excerpts from surveys of students and graduates.

For the second year in a row, Butler University is one of the nation’s best institutions for undergraduate education, according to The Princeton Review.

Butler Makes Princeton Review’s ‘The Best 385 Colleges’ For Second Straight Time

Students highlight experiential learning, study abroad offerings, innovation, and inclusive culture.

Aug 06 2019 Read more
Life Lessons

Life Lessons Found in Philanthropy

Patricia Pickett ’82 APR

from Spring 2018

With less than a decade of professional work experience under his belt, Matt Lally ’10 has ventured into territory many might postpone until closer to retirement. He’s the Founder of a nonprofit dedicated to bettering educational outcomes for at-risk youngsters; in addition, he’s funded a global effort to create a sustainable food source. Yet it’s clear his youthful enthusiasm is paying off for those individuals and communities in the crosshairs of his altruistic dreams.Matt Lally ’10

While he is optimistic about his efforts, he is also in touch with the realities of running a not-for-profit and a start-up business.

As Nielsen’s Associate Director of Growth and Strategy, Lally refers to himself as a market research consultant by day and nonprofit volunteer evenings and weekends. “Philanthropic work has always been important—it’s a value instilled from an early age,” he said. “My father ran his own charity for a decade (saving outcast dormitory furniture from landfills and delivering to Appalachia, the Caribbean, and Central America). I’ve always had exposure and interest in philanthropic activities.”

Networking led to meeting other young professionals with similar aspirations. One such acquaintance was exploring how he could have an impact on educational systems. The two were shocked at the statistic that one out of every eight students misses a month of school per school year. In 2012, when Chicago was the focus of national attention with high school graduation rates hovering around 50 percent, the duo began researching the issue—speaking with educators, administrators, and those with experience with existing programs and their shortcomings. “I believe education is the foundation and background for a successful life,” he said. “It was an area in which I wanted influence.”

Ugandan ParticipantsThrough research, they narrowed their focus to an approach that had little or no attention: A partnership geared toward elementary school parents that they named, “Goods for Grades.” In 2014, they attained their 501c3 and launched the inaugural program in 2015 with one school on Chicago’s southside. There, regular attendance (and later they added good behavior) results in rewards to the parents of actual goods or open-ended opportunities like a gift card to a restaurant or for purchasing clothes.

As happens through altruistic efforts, he’s learned more than he’s given over the course of three years. What he found was that the lackluster attendance of children was not because it was inconvenient to get them to school or that parents didn’t believe school was important.

“For some of them, it’s a matter of ‘I have to be at work at 6:00 a.m., so I rely on an older child to get them to school.’ We have to take into account all the different circumstances and then what would it take to place importance on overcoming that barrier,” he said. “We have learned a lot—most importantly, understanding the problem from their perspective. No one wants someone from the outside telling them how to raise their kids.”

As if one such effort wasn’t enough, Lally more recently became an investor in a sustainable chicken farm in Uganda. The relationship formed as he sat on the Chicago board of Accumen, “a global community dedicated to changing the way the world tackles poverty” by employing business practice and models and changing the traditional charity approach to something more sustainable. A business plan, cost analysis, and proforma led to Lally providing them with capital. 

Chicken Coup“The chicken farm is a supply/demand opportunity for eggs. At the beginning of 2015, five families were selected to participate to be the caregivers and owners of the project,” he said. “It’s been a tremendous success. They’ve followed their revenue forecast and already payed back the loan. Structuring it as a loan—versus a charitable donation—brings a greater sense of responsibility.”

These sorts of bold endeavors take a little chutzpah, and Lally credits his days at Butler with building that trait. “Something that has always stuck with me that I learned at Butler: It never hurts to ask. That can play out in a lot of different ways, but it’s a mentality. If there’s something that you want, the worst that can happen is you get a ‘no.’ Being vocal about what you want is going to have a positive impact. Also, if you have a real passion, you need to share that with as many people as you can.” 


To learn more about these respective projects and how to support them, visit or

Life Lessons

Life Lessons Found in Philanthropy

Market research consultant by day—nonprofit volunteer by night. 

by Patricia Pickett ’82 APR

from Spring 2018

Read more
Lambda Chi Alpha to Return to Butler This Fall
CampusStudent Life

Lambda Chi Alpha to Return to Butler This Fall


PUBLISHED ON Aug 16 2019

INDIANAPOLIS—Lambda Chi Alpha will return to Butler University’s campus this fall.

The fraternity will begin recruiting sophomores, juniors, and seniors in the fall, and then will participate in formal recruitment in January 2020.

“We are excited to rejoin the Butler community and are optimistic we will be a real asset to campus,” Lambda Chi Alpha’s international Director of Communications Tad Lichtenauer said. “Recruiting the right young men who are focused on academics, giving back, extracurriculars, and who understand the importance of leadership and service are what we are pushing.”

The international headquarters of Lambda Chi Alpha suspended the Butler chapter in January 2017 after a conduct review.

Lambda Chi Alpha will move to the former Tau Kappa Epsilon property in January 2021—they plan to tear down the existing house and build a new one. The former Lambda Chi Alpha house, located on Sunset Avenue, was sold to Butler by the fraternity’s housing corporation. The University has no plans for the property at this time.

“Butler emphasizes the holistic well-being of all students through BU Be Well,” said Butler’s Vice President for Student Affairs Frank E. Ross, III. “This was a perfect opportunity to bring back a fraternity that was a part of Butler’s community, while also underscoring our commitment to the high standards of academic and social integrity that we expect for all Greek organizations.”

"We are glad to hear they will be returning this semester," Interfraternity Council President and Butler senior Luke Rihm said. "We look forward to supporting Lambda Chi's founding class through this process."

Moving Lambda Chi Alpha into the former Tau Kappa Epsilon property will create synergy by being adjacent to other chapter houses located along Hampton Drive, Ross said.

“There continues to be significant student interest in Greek life at Butler, and fraternities and sororities contribute greatly to our robust student life,” he said. “I look forward to the positive contributions Lambda Chi Alpha will make to our campus community going forward.”


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications
914-815-5656 (cell)

Lambda Chi Alpha to Return to Butler This Fall
CampusStudent Life

Lambda Chi Alpha to Return to Butler This Fall

Fraternity to start recruiting members in the fall, move to former Tau Kappa Epsilon property in January 2021

Aug 16 2019 Read more
A rendering of the new Sciences Complex.
Butler BeyondCampusGiving

Former Board Chair Commits $5 Million to Butler

BY Jennifer Gunnels

PUBLISHED ON Jun 25 2019

INDIANAPOLIS – Craig Fenneman ’71 and Mary Stover-Fenneman have made a $5 million commitment to Butler University. The gift will provide support for the expansion and renovation of the University’s sciences complex, construction of the new building for the Andre B. Lacy School of Business (LSB), the Craig Fenneman Endowed Scholarship, and future University priorities.

Fenneman earned his Butler undergraduate degree in Economics in 1971, and has served as a member of the Board of Trustees, including serving as Board Chair from 2011-2014.  

“Butler University is a school on the rise and we are proud to support the incredible work happening on campus,” Fenneman says. “My own life has been shaped by my Butler experience, and Mary and I are pleased to help ensure Butler remains a premier institution for future generations of students.”

The gift will help enhance the University’s sciences facilities, which has been a top priority under the Butler 2020 strategic plan. In recognition of their gift, the couple will be honored, along with other lead donors to the sciences expansion and renovation project, in the new atrium of the sciences complex.

Fenneman established the Craig Fenneman Endowed Scholarship in 2003 to benefit students pursuing an economics degree in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Endowed scholarship support is among Butler’s current chief funding priorities as the University seeks to ensure the long-term sustainability of its financial aid program. Butler annually invests more than $78 million in student scholarship support.

The couple’s support for the new building for the LSB places them with 11 other families in the Founders Circle, a group of lead donors who have committed $1 million or more to the project since 2016. The new building will open for classes in fall.

“Butler students in each of our six colleges have directly benefitted from Craig and Mary’s generosity throughout the years,” says Provost Kate Morris. “Their gifts are improving the quality of our teaching facilities, increasing student access through scholarships, and strengthening our ability to partner with the local community in providing experiential learning opportunities for our students.”

Fenneman and Stover-Fenneman are honorees of Butler’s premier philanthropic giving community, the Carillon Society, and recognized on Cornerstone Plaza for their generous lifetime giving to Butler. Their previous philanthropic support has benefitted the Butler Fund, the Campaign for Hinkle Fieldhouse, the Butler Rising Campaign, and the Butler Business Consulting Group.

“We are deeply grateful to Craig and Mary for their significant investment in the lives of our students,” says Butler President James Danko. “Butler University is experiencing an exciting era of growth, and this transformational commitment will fuel our vision for the future.”

About Butler University

An influx of philanthropic support has aided Butler University’s dramatic growth in recent years. Pursuant to the Butler 2020 Strategic Plan, the University and donor partners have invested in new campus facilities, academic programs, and co-curricular offerings. In the past five years, Butler has built the Howard L. Schrott Center for the Arts, the Sunset Avenue parking garage including a streetscape beautification project and renovated Hinkle Fieldhouse. In addition, the University partnered with American Campus Communities to build the Fairview House and Irvington House residential communities. The Andre B. Lacy School of Business will open the doors to its new 110,000 square foot home in the fall of 2019, and fundraising is underway to complete a $93 million Science Complex expansion and renovation.

Butler University is a nationally recognized comprehensive university encompassing six colleges: Arts, Business, Communication, Education, Liberal Arts and Sciences, and Pharmacy & Health Sciences. Approximately 4,500 undergraduate and 541 graduate students are enrolled at Butler, representing 46 states and 39 countries. Ninety-five percent of Butler students will participate in some form of internship, student teaching, clinical rotation, research, or service learning by the time they graduate. Butler students have had significant success after graduation as demonstrated by the University’s 97% 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.

A rendering of the new Sciences Complex.
Butler BeyondCampusGiving

Former Board Chair Commits $5 Million to Butler

Craig Fenneman ’71 and Mary Stover-Fenneman have made a $5 million commitment to Butler University.

Jun 25 2019 Read more

A Bulldog Abroad

By Brittany Bluthardt '20

Only a few weeks after graduating from Butler University, one student will travel halfway across the world to serve in the Peace Corps in Malawi, an impoverished country in southeastern Africa. During her nearly two-and-a-half-year service, senior Bulldog Alex Gabor will work in the education sector and teach English to children. Although she’ll be far away from Butler University and her home in Wilmette, Illinois, Alex is excited for what life and service across the world has in the future; she thanks Butler for helping her along the way.

“I hope to form relationships with the people in my village that I will be living with,” she said. “Hopefully, I can gain their trust and respect because I feel like without that it’s hard to learn from someone.”

Alex hopes to become fluent in the village’s language and fully immerse herself in the culture. Her transition from Indianapolis to the small village will be a familiar change. Alex was born in the Philippines and lived there for nine years before traveling to the states; she’s used to moving around.

“Moving around is such a big part of me that I will be able to manage well compared to other people that haven’t had that experience,” she said. “So, I feel like it won’t be that bad, but I will definitely be homesick.”

Nearly four years ago, Alex didn’t know what she wanted to study or where she wanted to go. She stumbled upon Butler’s name and decided it was the one - she hadn’t even stepped foot on campus. After enrolling in an exploratory course, she sat in on an upper-level psychology class and discovered her passion for research. From then on, Alex threw herself into undergraduate research any chance she could.

“Being involved in research has given me such good experience, not only for my professional self, but for my personal self,” Alex said. “Butler has opened so many doors for me.”

Alex had experience in undergraduate research early in her college career which prepared her for future presentations across the country. Along with presenting at the Undergraduate Research Conference on Butler’s campus, Alex has traveled to Chicago, Milwaukee, Maryland, and, soon, San Francisco to share her knowledge.

“My research in psychology, I think, made me a really competitive applicant to serve in the Peace Corp.”

During her time at Butler, Alex took full advantage of the resources available to her on campus, from receiving resume help at the Internship and Career Services office to going to as many events, with free food, as possible. Along with taking courses for her two majors in psychology and Chinese and her minor in neuroscience, she was involved in Student Government Association, a sorority, volunteer work, and the Asian Culture Enthusiasts club. Alex kept herself busy and she wouldn’t have it any other way.

“When I leave Butler, I’ll miss seeing the same people,” she said. “I’ll miss being around the people. It’s the vibe, the energy. You know when you’re on campus, you know?”


Alex Gabor

A Bulldog Abroad

Senior graduate Alex Gabor will fully immerse herself in a new culture, far away from her second home on campus.

Alex Gabor

A Bulldog Abroad

By Brittany Bluthardt '20
Scooter and Shana
CampusStudent Life

How Butler’s New Therapy Dog is Breaking Down Barriers to Seeking Support

BY Katie Grieze

PUBLISHED ON Sep 17 2019

Floppy black ears bouncing in the sunlight, Scooter trots down a busy sidewalk at Butler University. Students pass by, winding down from the chaos that comes with the first full week of classes. Scooter looks up at them from the end of his Butler-themed leash, giving that look that only dogs can give.

And for student after student, just seeing Scooter brings instant joy. Their faces transform as they smile back. While some walk away grinning after just a quick pet, others stop in their tracks for the chance to rub Scooter’s belly or feed him a treat from the bag Shana Markle carries with her on their afternoon walk through campus.

Scooter, a one-year-old Cavachon, joined the Butler University Counseling Center as a therapy dog in August 2019. He’s cared for by Markle, the Center’s Associate Director. Markle says it’s not rare for universities to offer this service, but it isn’t common, either, and the counseling staff at Butler wanted to stay ahead of the game when it comes to supporting student health.

“We talk a lot about being innovative and just trying to provide the students with the best experience we can,” Markle says. “For us, it’s an opportunity to provide a better experience for them, and also to remove barriers and be more accessible. There’s still a stigma related to coming to counseling, and this makes it a little easier for people to come in who might not otherwise.”

With depression and anxiety on the rise among teens and young adults, many university counseling centers have a hard time keeping up with the demand for care. Average counseling center usage increased by up to 40 percent between 2009 and 2015, according to the Center for Collegiate Mental Health, while school enrollment only rose by 5 percent.

While adding Scooter to the mix won’t magically solve these issues at Butler, it does make the Center more well-rounded by introducing a new approach when it comes to this very real challenge of how best to care for mental health, Markle says. For students who don’t need clinical care, just petting a dog can be enough to reduce stress. And within regular counseling sessions, having a dog around will allow Markle to implement new forms of therapy for students with more serious illnesses.

Animal-assisted therapy goes deeper than just having a furry thing to pet. Interacting with dogs in a clinical setting can provide relief to students who’ve struggled with leaving pets behind at home, or who are going through trauma and other diagnosable mental issues.

According to Pet Partners, a national nonprofit organization that trains and registers therapy animals and their handlers, humans and animals can bond in beneficial ways. Research shows that therapy dogs can help relieve pain, improve mood, encourage more social behavior, and lower blood pressure. Plus, by stimulating the release of endorphins, dogs usually just make people feel happy.

Plans to bring a therapy dog to Butler began taking shape during the 2017-18 academic year, when one of the Counseling Center’s doctoral fellows brought her expertise in animal-assisted therapy to campus. Student Affairs leaders at the University carefully studied the benefits and potential risks of such a program, considering what has worked best on other campuses in order to shape policies for animal-assisted therapy at Butler. Soon enough, it was time to pick a puppy and decide who would take the dog home each night.

Of the three full-time staff members, Markle was in the best position to take on a new pet. She says it took as much effort to convince her husband as it did to convince her colleagues, but after some time—and some begging from their teenage son—the couple decided to take a chance. On Labor Day 2018, they brought an eight-week-old Scooter home.

Over the next year, there was a lot of paperwork for Markle and training for Scooter. A therapy dog’s role goes deeper than that of an emotional-support dog—the use is more intentional and clinical, which meant Scooter needed to be certified with a pet therapy organization.

Scooter started taking obedience courses at just 12 weeks old, one of the youngest students in his classes. Despite having the extra playfulness of a puppy, Markle says he did a great job. He was trained and tested in a range of skills, from following basic commands like sit and stay to remaining calm in a crowd of strangers, before becoming registered with the American Kennel Club as both a “S.T.A.R. Puppy” and a “Canine Good Citizen.” He also passed an evaluation for dogs who demonstrate advanced skills in urban settings. After a little more practice interacting with other dogs, Scooter will likely become certified by Pet Partners, one of the most well-known and respected national pet therapy organizations.

But all the effort was worth it, Markle says, because when students interact with Scooter, she can see their stress melt away.


Scooter and Shana


During therapy sessions, it can be therapeutic for patients to breathe along with Scooter, or hold onto him to stay mentally grounded while discussing traumatic experiences. Students know Scooter will never judge what they say.

"Human connection is very important to our well-being, but relationships can also be a source of stress,” Markle says. “Even healthy relationships require effort to maintain and can be quite challenging.”

With a dog, the relationship will be genuine, accepting, and unconditional.

Students can play with Scooter or brush his curly black-and-white fur. They can try to teach him a new skill or just let him curl up at their feet. Or, for students who would rather not interact with a dog, he doesn’t need to be in the room. The animal-assisted therapy service will be carefully tailored to each student’s needs.

“To me, Scooter represents more than the day-to-day assistance he’ll be able to provide,” says Scott Peden, Executive Director of Student Health & Recreation. “It’s kind of a representation of our efforts to meet the students where they are and address whatever barriers they face when seeking out our services.”

Peden says Scooter has already had an unexpected impact on the Counseling Center staff. After a tough session, therapists can relax by rubbing Scooter’s ears or taking him outside for a walk.

“Therapists need therapists, because what they do is really a tough job,” Peden says. “So it’s nice to have Scooter in-house to be a support mechanism.”

But animal-assisted therapy isn’t for everyone, and that’s okay. Markle and the other counselors are more than happy to make any accommodations necessary. Scooter is hypoallergenic and doesn’t shed, but there will still be some campus offices he never visits. A sign on the Counseling Center’s door also informs guests how to ask that Scooter be put away before they enter.

“It’s so important for us, as a Center, to be a support for everyone on campus,” Markle says. “We’re there for everyone. We would not want the presence of a therapy dog to be a barrier for others.”

The animal-assisted therapy program fits into Butler’s emphasis on mind and body wellness, one of the eight dimensions included under the BUBeWell student experience model that was introduced last year. This initiative aims to help students grow and learn, both inside and outside of the classroom.

“Right now in higher education,” says Vice President for Student Affairs Frank Ross, “there’s a significant movement looking at student wellbeing as the foundation for student success. We’ve taken that framework to heart here by creating BUBeWell. It’s comprised of eight dimensions that we feel are important holistically for student development.”

ScooterWithin the mind and body dimension, the Counseling Center will be expanding outreach in a variety of ways throughout the next year. Scooter is just one part of that. Staff members are also introducing a series called Let’s Talk, providing opportunities for groups of students to gather and share whatever is on their minds. Counseling staff will be visiting the Efroymson Diversity Center, too, hosting sessions that address topics specific to students of color.

Ultimately, the goal is to make resources for maintaining mental wellbeing more accessible to students. That often means getting out of the Counseling Center and meeting students where they’re at, whether that’s in another campus office or right by the sidewalk on a sunny afternoon.

Olivia Jacobs, a Community Assistant in her junior year at Butler, first met Scooter during a training about how to help fellow students find the best on-campus mental health resources.

“Having Scooter here shows me that Butler’s Counseling and Consultation Services is innovating,” Jacobs says. “It’s so exciting that they are looking at different routes for making student mental health a priority. And by the intentional ways they are implementing Scooter, it also shows me that they are still accommodating to everyone. I would just encourage people—if they see Scooter around campus—to go up and say hi, and to go pet him, because it’s his job to be a support.”


Media Contact:
Katie Grieze
News Content Manager


Student Access and Success

At the heart of Butler Beyond is a desire to increase student access and success, putting a Butler education within reach of all who desire to pursue it. With a focus on enhancing the overall student experience that is foundational to a Butler education, gifts to this pillar will grow student scholarships, elevate student support services, expand experiential learning opportunities, and more. Learn more, make a gift, and read other stories like this one at

Scooter and Shana
CampusStudent Life

How Butler’s New Therapy Dog is Breaking Down Barriers to Seeking Support

This fall, Counseling Center staff introduce animal-assisted therapy. Meet Scooter, their newest co-worker.

Sep 17 2019 Read more

Pursuing Her Passion

By Meg Liffick

Graduating Senior Mariam Saeedi grew up in Fishers, Indiana, just up the road from Butler University. Like a lot of kids, she really loved being creative and especially loved art. In high school at Hamilton Southeastern, she took all the art classes they offered and pursued as many opportunities as she could to be creative.  

While she has a passion for artmaking and an obvious talent, when Mariam chose her major before starting her first year at Butler, Art wasn’t even on her radar. “I originally came to Butler because I wanted to be a teacher. I had heard great things about the College of Education. After my first semester, I realized that it wasn’t the right path for me. I felt like I was missing something.”

Like so many college students, Mariam switched her major her freshman year. This time, she chose Marketing.

But again, after taking a few classes, she still wasn’t confident she was on the right path. She had a nagging feeling that wouldn’t go away. One day as she was browsing through the course list for the Art+Design major in the Jordan College of the Arts things became clear. “I wanted to take all of those classes. I realized what I was missing was an opportunity to be really creative and express myself, and I found it in those classes.”

In the Art+Design program, Mariam was able to take coursework that explored different mediums of expression, and in doing, so she found her voice.

“During my time here, I’ve learned about myself. I don’t want to be somewhere where I’m creating what everyone else is doing. I want to create for myself and be an individual.” At Butler, Mariam found the courses, mentors, and opportunities to do just that. She forged strong relationships with her classmates and her instructors, and these relationships inspired her and challenged her to be her best.

“When I was younger, I knew I always liked art, but I never imagined it would turn into something I’d do all of the time. I was more interested in finding a `practical, reasonable career path.’ It all grew on me as I found myself more,” says Mariam.

After graduating this spring with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art+Design, Mariam will begin a prestigious Orr fellowship. After interviewing for months, she was selected with other top seniors from Indiana and Ohio to join the post-graduate experience dedicated to creating a foundation of career success through coursework, professional mentoring, and a full-time, salaried position. Awarded each year to an elite group of graduates, the Orr fellowship has launched the careers of some of the most accomplished young professionals in the city and beyond.

“People don’t think of the arts as a stable field, and I think they are scared to pursue creative paths.” But in finding her major, Mariam found herself. She proved that creativity and a practical career path are not mutually exclusive, and in fact, passion is critical to long term success.

“Loving what you do it the best motivation. It’s so much easier to succeed when you are really passionate about something.”


Mariam Saeedi

Pursuing Her Passion

When Mariam Saeedi '18 found her major, she found her voice.

Mariam Saeedi

Pursuing Her Passion

By Meg Liffick

Butler, by Being Bold, Ready for a Future Steeped in Past Ideals

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Sep 28 2018

INDIANAPOLIS – During his annual State of the University address, Butler University President James M. Danko reported on the University’s progress, challenges being confronted, and visions for the future.

But as much as things change, he said, one thing has remained constant throughout Butler’s history, and that is a University that has never shied away from being bold in its decision making. As Butler evolves over time, the essence of the University has always remained the same, Danko said.

“Just like no one would have predicted 20 years ago what Butler would look like today, we can’t accurately predict what Butler will look like 20 years from now,” Danko said. “So, while our future success will always be something to consistently chase, we can be certain that Butler University will be here, thriving. Because for more than 165 years, Butler has always put in the extra effort. It’s the Butler Way.”

Danko delivered the 2018 State of the University on Friday at Butler’s Schrott Center for the Arts. The afternoon featured three guest speakers—retired Religion Professor Paul Valliere, current senior Xavier Colvin, and College of Education graduate Katie Moore ’08.

From the beginning, Danko said, Butler has made bold decisions.

In the years just before the Civil War, Ovid Butler established an inclusive university, providing access to education for everyone, no matter race or gender. Springing from that intrepid start, there were other bold decisions which have shaped us as the University we are today, Danko said. Like moving the campus three times, building a Fieldhouse 90 years ago, opening Clowes Hall, and building an observatory.

More recently, bold decisions have taken the form of joining the BIG EAST Conference, investing in nationwide branding and awareness, improving the living and learning facilities on campus, increasing the size of our student body, And, most recently, establishing South Campus.

Danko noted that these daring choices are paying off.

“For the first time ever, Butler was included in the Princeton Review’s list of ‘The Best 384 Colleges,’” he said. “And after years on the rise, Butler has now secured the No. 1 position among Midwest Regional Universities in the 2019 U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings.”

Other highlights include:

  • Compensation and Classification study to provide more equitable and competitive wages for our faculty and staff.
  • A new partnership with the Indiana Housing Program and Midtown Anchor Coalition to both purchase and repair homes in the surrounding neighborhood.
  • The welcoming of a new Title IX Coordinator, as well as our new BUBeWell model
  • An active search for the University’s first Associate Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
  • Since 2010, total student full-time equivalent has grown by 500.
  • Since 2010, overall revenues have grown by 60 percent.
  • Since 2012, Butler’s endowment has grown by nearly 60 percent.
  • The total gift income raised in the past three years is more than double what Butler raised in gift income the six years prior.

But the most powerful, most significant indicator of Butler’s impact is in its people.

“I think you’ll agree with me that the core of Butler University is our success in bringing together great faculty and great students,” Danko said. “Butler has excelled over its history because of the richness of our education, brought to life by outstanding faculty who care about students and who are committed to providing them with exceptional academic experiences.”

Paul Valliere

Since his career at Butler began in 1982, Retired Professor of Religion Valliere, has seen a lot of change. In 1982, he said, Butler needed to grow, to upgrade physical facilities, to clarify its identity, and to enhance its visibility. Now, he says, Butler has accomplished all those things. All while maintaining a healthy balance of change and tradition.

“Butler changed a lot in all sorts of good ways. But, the wonderful fact is that in some profound ways Butler University has not changed,” he said.

Xavier Colvin

A senior marketing major at Butler, Colvin is a linebacker on the football team. He also came out as gay in 2016. He feared the reactions of teammates, coaches, and the campus community, but he used his platform as an NCAA athlete to share his story in hopes of helping others, he said. He has tried to be the person that teenage Xavier needed. And he hasn’t stopped, as he continues to share his coming out story in hopes it impacts someone, somewhere.

“I was recently asked if I get tired of telling my story over and over. The work I’m doing is minimal. If Harriet Tubman, Bayard Rustin, MLK Jr., or Harvey Milk, all activists for either the LGBT or the Black Community, would have gotten tired, I am not sure if I would be standing in front of you today,” he said.

Katie Moore

Moore, a 2008 College of Education graduate, said the most rewarding experiences at Butler were experiential learning opportunities—practical opportunities that allowed her to make connections between the content, her life, and the world. She has learned first-hand, she said, that it is impossible to be prepared for what you cannot imagine, but Butler’s commitment to investing in students through ensuring a variety of opportunities prepares individuals for the unforeseen dynamics of the future.

It is that unwavering commitment to students, Danko said, that has always been a part of Butler—no matter how much has changed. That balance between being unafraid to make bold moves, yet sticking to core values, is what has made Butler successful throughout time, and what will help sustain that success in the future, he said.

“We will maintain a balance of change and tradition, we will celebrate the investments we have made to remain competitive, while at the same time we begin to explore new bold ideas to sustain, advance, and ensure our success for generations to come,” Danko said.

Media contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications


Butler, by Being Bold, Ready for a Future Steeped in Past Ideals

In his State of the University address, President James M. Danko reported on progress, but evoked tradition.

Sep 28 2018 Read more
Arts & CulturePeopleCampus

Commedia Dell'Arte is Like the Pork

BY Marc Allan MFA `18

PUBLISHED ON Oct 22 2018

Italian actor, director, and theatre teacher Marco Luly is trying to explain commedia dell'arte, the art form he has worked in since 1980, and The Servant of Two Masters, the play he is directing for Butler Theatre, October 31 through November 4 at the Schrott Center for the Arts.

He says the show, which was written by Carlo Goldoni in 1745 and has been performed steadily in Italy since 1949, is a comedy with some funny and some serious parts. Some parts develop the story, some parts advance the story, and some parts play the lazzi—the jokes, the fun. There's improvisation, so the actors need to listen to each other. They need to understand how to share the space and pace. To learn action and reaction. To control their body, their body language. To establish contact with other people. To pick up the vibe of the crowd and play with the audience, rather than to the audience.  

"Everything can be used," he says. "Everything. It's like the pork, where everything gets used. We can title this interview, 'Commedia dell'arte is like the pork.'"

And so we have.

Luly, who is spending nine weeks at Butler teaching two classes and directing the show, is the 2018 Visiting International Theatre Artist (VITA). Butler Theatre established the program in 2010 to give students the opportunity to learn from a theater professional from another country. Past VITAs have come from Russia, India, England, and elsewhere.

Luly chose to have the students perform The Servant of Two Masters, a classic in commedia dell'arte, a 500-year-old comedy art form that will be instantly recognizable to today's audiences through its resemblance to Shakespeare's comedies, silent movies, sketch comedy, and TV sitcoms. Actors wear leather masks that exaggerate facial features and identify them as stock characters. There are mistaken identities, lovers' triangles, class struggles, and more.

"Commedia dell'arte is at the root of almost every form of comedy that we know today, whether it's a TV commercial or Saturday Night Live, or Seinfeld and Cheers," says Diane Timmerman, Chair of Butler Theatre. "All these shows have stock characters, situations, physical comedy that is all derived from comedia. So it's fun to go to the source and experience what the original comedy was."

Luly brought with him four masks for the student-actors to portray character types. There's Brighella, who is a high-status servant like an innkeeper; Arlecchino, a servant character looking for money, power, and position in the world; Il Dottore—the Doctor—who bluffs his way through every situation; and Pantalone, an old merchant who's often in love with young girls.

The masks, he says, "are the magic of this form of theater. The masks are important for the actors. The mask does not hide. The mask amplifies. The mask is a tool that can help me show the audience my emotions, my sentiments, my lines. And I don't need to use too many words, too many moves. I can project my emotions just by one movement of my mask."

Taylor Steigmeyer, a junior Theatre/Psychology double major from South Bend, Indiana, is playing Arlecchino, the servant of two masters—and having a great time squatting and jumping and inhabiting this sprightly, sparkly, physically demanding character.

Arlecchino, she says, is a character with two basic needs. He wants food—he's always hungry—and affection from Smeraldina, the maid.

"He's someone who doesn't care about anyone but himself, so while I have to worry about what the other characters are doing, I'm in my own little world sometimes," she says. "I wonder when I'm going to get to eat again. I wonder if Smeraldina wants to kiss me too."

Steigmeyer said working with Luly has been a great experience, one she initially was unsure she was going to be able to fit into her packed schedule. But she found time to take one of Luly's afternoon classes, and then was cast as the title character.

"I was like, this is going to be such a great experience," she says. "When and where would I get an experience like this again?"

Rehearsals for The Servant of Two Masters have been running 6:30-9:30 PM five days a week, and Luly says he's been impressed with the students' work ethic and the way they've come to understand the characters.

As a director, Luly is a taskmaster, but benevolent. During a rehearsal in early October, when an actor missed a line, he told her, "If you don't speak, she might speak, so you have to speak." When the cast is trying to grasp the rhythm of a particular scene where everyone has a couple of words, he explained, "This is a staircase – 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 – with each line getting progressively louder. He'll walk over to tilt an actor's head, correct the emphasis of a particular line, and instruct one of the actors to carry a prop on a different shoulder so the audience can see his face.

"He's intense, but he's very definitive," says Isaiah Moore, a junior Theatre/Psychology double major from Fishers, Indiana, who plays Florindo Aretusi, who is in love with Beatrice Rasponi and has run away from his hometown because he killed a man in a duel and has relocated to Venice. "He knows what he wants. We have to make sure we're ready to present what he wants."

To put it another way, they have to deliver the pork.


Marc Allan MFA '18
News Manager

Arts & CulturePeopleCampus

Commedia Dell'Arte is Like the Pork

Visiting International Theatre Artist Marco Luly directs Butler Theatre's The Servant of Two Masters.

Oct 22 2018 Read more

Andre Lacy Dies in Motorcycle Accident In Africa


PUBLISHED ON Nov 30 2017

Gift from the philanthropist and his wife resulted in the renaming of the College of Business.

Andre B. Lacy, the man for whom Butler’s Lacy School of Business is named, was killed Thursday, November 30, in a single-rider accident while on a private motorcycle tour in southern Africa.

“We are saddened to share the news that Andre B. Lacy passed away this morning,” said J.A. Lacy, chief executive officer and president of LDI, where Andre Lacy was Chairman of the Board. “Andre was known for his entrepreneurial fire and sense of adventure in business and life. We take comfort knowing that he passed away while pursuing one of his passions in life, and are inspired by the legacy of leadership that he leaves.”

Steve Standifird, Dean of the Lacy School of Business, issued this statement:

“It is with great sorrow that I share with you that Andre Lacy was killed in a motorcycle accident earlier today. There will be a university wide note coming out from Jim Danko later today. I wanted you all to be made aware of this incredibly tragic news prior to the university announcement.

“Andre and Julia Lacy will be remembered in perpetuity for their transformational gift to name the Lacy School of Business. For those of us that have had the good fortune of working with Andre as Senior Advisor for the school, he will be remembered as someone who cared deeply for the success of the school and of our students.

“Andre had become a central figure in the Lacy School of Business. I have personally benefited immensely from his insights. That said, the most meaningful moments for me have been his one-on-one conversations with our students. He had the unique capability of connecting with our students in the most meaningful of ways. He was more than a Senior Advisor; he was a friend, colleague, and inspirational leader for many of us. He will be deeply missed by many.”

Butler President James M. Danko said in an email to campus that Lacy was “a dear friend to Butler University.”

“The transformational gift from Andre and his late wife, Julia, built upon a nearly decade-long relationship with the University,” Danko said. “Their gift went far beyond a monetary commitment; in sharing their family name with Butler, Andre and Julia Lacy created a legacy for young businesspeople in the city they love. They endorsed The Butler Way, and everything it stands for—especially caring for others and leading with integrity.”

Following graduation from Denison University, Lacy started his career at LDI’s founding enterprise, U.S. Corrugated Fibre-Box, where he worked his way through the corporate ranks. Following the sale of U.S. Corrugated, he was named executive vice president and chief operations officer of the newly created Lacy Diversified Industries, the holding company that would become LDI. He was elected CEO of LDI in 1983 and Chairman of the Board in 1991. He remained chairman following his retirement from LDI in 2006.

A strong advocate of civic progress, especially economic development, agriculture, and education, Lacy was co-chair of the Cultural Trail fundraising committee and a co-creator of Conexus. In 2009, Governor Mitch Daniels appointed Lacy chairman of the Indiana State Fair Commission, a role in which he remained in until his death. As commission chair, he was a driving force behind the State Fair Coliseum restoration.

Lacy provided leadership for many boards, including the United Way of Central Indiana, Indianapolis 500 Festival, Indianapolis Public School Board, and Economic Club of Indianapolis. He served as an advisor for the Lacy School of Business at Butler University. He was also an alumnus of the Stanley K. Lacy Executive Leadership Series (SKL) and served as moderator of Class XV.

In addition to his civic contributions, Lacy was active on numerous corporate boards, including Hulman & Company, Herff Jones, Patterson Companies, Inc., Ethyl Corporation, National Bank of Indianapolis, and Indianapolis Power & Light Company. He is past chairman of the Indiana State Chamber of Commerce and the chairman of the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors.

Governors Roger Branigan, Robert Orr, and Mitch Daniels each recognized Lacy as a Sagamore of the Wabash.

Information regarding funeral arrangements will be announced in the coming days.

Media contact:
Marc Allan


Andre Lacy Dies in Motorcycle Accident In Africa

Andre B. Lacy, the man for whom Butler’s Lacy School of Business is named, was killed Thursday, November 30, in a single-rider accident while on a private motorcycle tour in southern Africa.

Nov 30 2017 Read more
Karamo Brown
Arts & CultureCampus

Diversity Lecture Series Fall 2018 Lineup Announced

BY Marc Allan

PUBLISHED ON Sep 06 2018

Charismatic Queer Eye star Karamo Brown and University of Texas Political Science Professor and immigration expert Victoria M. DeFrancesco Soto will be the fall 2018 speakers in Butler University's Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series.

Brown will kick off the 31st annual series at Clowes Memorial Hall on Wednesday, September 19, at 7:00 PM. DeFrancesco Soto's talk takes place on Monday, October 22, at 7:00 PM in Shelton Auditorium on South Campus.

Admission to all talks in the series is free and open to the public without tickets. The lecture series will continue during the spring semester with two more speakers.


Karamo Brown
Know Thyself: Using Your Uniqueness to Create Success
Wednesday, September 19, 7:00 PM
Clowes Memorial Hall, Butler Arts Center
More information at

Whether as an openly gay man, a black man, a Christian, a single father, a business leader, or reality television personality, Brown has discovered that the many facets of his identity are the key to his success. In this speech, he shares his methods and ensures that corporate and collegiate audiences alike are able to recognize and utilize their own different identities.

Today, Brown serves as the television Host and Culture Expert on the Emmy-nominated Netflix reboot of Queer Eye. Brown has worked as an on-air host and producer for OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network), Huffington Post Live, and a contributor on NBC’s Access Hollywood Live. He was first introduced to the world in 2005 at 22 as a housemate on the hit MTV reality series The Real World. He was a breakout star and became the first openly gay African-American in the history of reality TV. In February 2016, he returned to reality television as a cast member on TV One’s #TheNext15.


Victoria M. DeFrancesco Soto
E Pluribus Unum? American Diversity & the Political Landscape
Monday, October 22, 7:00 PM
Shelton Auditorium, South Campus
More information at

The United States has always been made up of diverse entities and, as a nation, we have negotiated the "pluribus" to get to the "unum." DeFrancesco Soto will consider the topic of negotiating diversity within the current political landscape with a particular focus on the last decade and the upcoming mid-term election.

DeFrancesco Soto is a professor at the University of Texas’ LBJ School of Public Affairs and a contributor to MSNBC,, and Telemundo among others. She was a featured expert in the PBS documentary of the Civil Rights trailblazer Willie Velasquez in Your Vote is Your Voice and has published in both academic and popular outlets such as Politico, Talking Points Memo, and Perspectives on Politics.

Her areas of expertise include immigration, Latinos, women and politics, political psychology, and campaigns and elections. In looking at immigration, she takes a broad historical perspective to understand current policy debates. When looking at diverse groups within the electorate, she focuses on how women, Latinos, and other minorities influence policies.


Media Contact:
Marc Allan

Karamo Brown
Arts & CultureCampus

Diversity Lecture Series Fall 2018 Lineup Announced

The 31st year of Diversity Lecture Series will feature Karamo Brown and Victoria M. DeFrancesco Soto.

Sep 06 2018 Read more
Butler 2019
Butler BeyondCampusResearch

The Year That Was: Top Stories from Butler in 2019

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Dec 18 2019

We opened a brand new building and announced plans for our largest investment ever in another one. We faced some of society’s greatest challenges head on by announcing a new strategic direction and largest ever comprehensive fundraising campaign. Our favorite bulldog announced his retirement, and plans for an esports and gaming space were unveiled.

In 2019, the Butler University community brought excitement and innovation to campus and the world around them. They conducted groundbreaking research on the effects of vaping, social media, how hearing loss affects overall development, and more—all in an effort to make a difference in society. Here’s a look back at some of the top stories of the year.


Social media, it turns out, makes us feel better about ourselves

Butler Associate Professor of Entertainment Media and Journalism Lee Farquhar found that most of us prefer to use social media to look at and compare ourselves to certain types of individuals: those who make us feel better about ourselves. That, Farquhar found, can lead to an increase in happiness and life satisfaction.

Read more here.


Hearing loss is linked to cognitive ability in babies

According to new research from Butler Assistant Professor of Communication Sciences and Disorders Tonya Bergeson-Dana, hearing loss is connected to the larger cognitive system and can have a cascading effect on cognitive development.

Read more here.


Providing clinical expertise to the insurance industry

A team of about 25 Butler community members created a tool for the Department of Insurance in an effort to specify, from a medical perspective, what medications insurance companies should cover for 17 diseases that are health priorities in Indiana.

Read more here.


History made during Commencement

During Butler’s 163rd Spring Commencement, nearly 1,050 graduates received their diplomas—the largest graduating class in Butler’s history.

Read more here.


Board approves sciences upgrade

The Butler Board of Trustees approved a $100 million renovation and expansion—the largest investment ever by the Trustees in Butler’s future—for a new sciences complex. The project includes new high-tech classrooms designed to promote learning by doing, labs that mimic those at top research companies, and work spaces meant to encourage cross-disciplinary collaboration.

Read more here.


New building for the Lacy School of Business opens

After nearly two years of construction, the new 110,000-square-foot building for Butler’s Andre B. Lacy School of Business (LSB) officially opened in August.

Read more here.


Butler ranked No. 1 again

For the second consecutive year, Butler was named the No. 1 Regional University in the Midwest, according to the 2020 U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings. Butler also ranked as the No. 1 Most Innovative School for the fifth straight year.

Read more here.


New strategic direction

Butler unveiled a new strategic direction and its largest ever comprehensive fundraising campaign. Butler Beyond: The Campaign for Butler University seeks to raise $250 million by May 2022 to deliver transformative change to the University, the region, and the world.

Read more here.


Esports and Gaming Lounge set to open on campus

A new space dedicated to esports and gaming will open on Butler’s campus in Atherton Union. But that space is just the beginning. A 7,500-square-foot, multi-use space in the Butler Parking Garage is slated to open fall 2020, and it will feature 50 gaming PCs, an area of gaming consoles, and room for technology-infused corporate trainings and events or youth STEM and esports camps.

Read more here.


Butler Blue III set to retire

After eight years, Butler Blue III will retire at the end of the 2019-2020 academic year. The American Kennel Club-registered English bulldog is hanging up his mascot duties because of his older age (for bulldogs), long tenure on the job, and desire to start the next chapter of his life.

Read more here.


Study shows JUUL not being used as intended

A survey of nearly 1,000 college students from a Butler professor and undergrad reveals that, while vaping was originally promoted as a safer alternative for existing smokers, most young vape users are actually brand new to nicotine.

Read more here.

Butler 2019
Butler BeyondCampusResearch

The Year That Was: Top Stories from Butler in 2019

In 2019, the Butler community brought excitement and innovation to campus and the world around them.

Dec 18 2019 Read more
Arts & CultureCampus

In The HRC, A Blank Wall Becomes a Canvas

BY Hannah Hartzell ’17

PUBLISHED ON Oct 02 2017

One wall gets a new look — a painting depicting the front of Hinkle Fieldhouse.

Butler Director of Recreation Scott Peden was running on the track in the Health and Recreation Center (HRC) when he noticed the number of blank walls.

“I saw this particular wall,” Peden said, referring to the north entrance, “and thought: ‘We need to put something there.’”

So he turned to Chris Blice and John Edwards, who painted the mural in the Robertson Hall Johnson Boardroom as well as the historical mural in the Wildman Room in Hinkle Fieldhouse.

Peden proposed a medium-sized painting.

But Blice and Edwards were thinking big picture.

“They came back to me with a vision that was 10 times what I’d thought of,” said Peden. “They wanted to make the entire wall a mural.”

Blice and Edwards proposed creating a massive rendering of Hinkle Fieldhouse from the outside looking in. A glimpse of the Hinkle magic.

“We didn’t want the colors to be overpowering or realistic, though,” Edwards said. “It needed to blend in with the room.”

The room, Peden said, is somewhere students often come to study or relax. He thinks the mural will enhance the soft space even further.

The new mural will hold special significance for the graduating class of 2010, which helped fund it. According to Peden, when the 2010 graduates couldn’t decide what to do with their class gift money, they gave it to the HRC.

“The HRC meant so much,” Peden said. “They were the first class to have use of it for four full years. They really valued it, and they also valued Hinkle.”

When he contacted the 2010 class president and shared the idea, she was “extremely excited.” The class gave its blessing and the Hinkle mural got the green light.

Blice and Edward began work on Monday, September 11, and they were still working on it as this story was being written.

In the meantime, they’re discussing where they want to paint their next Butler mural. “It’s very special,” Blice said of the experience. “This is our neighborhood college and we love Butler.”

“For me, it’s nostalgic,” Edwards said. “I grew up here. I’ve known Butler forever.”

Arts & CultureCampus

In The HRC, A Blank Wall Becomes a Canvas

One wall gets a new look — a painting depicting the front of Hinkle Fieldhouse

Oct 02 2017 Read more

A Snapshot of Something Bigger

By Brittany Bluthardt '20

“This story is only a snapshot of something bigger, genuine, and unique” Butler University senior, and soon to be graduate, Nikki Miceli said as she introduced her capstone project, “Up North.” The video follows with snapshots of her smiling family members, days in the water, and some traditional campfire singing. Clip after clip, Nikki captures the little moments her family celebrates every summer at their cabin in northern Wisconsin. Two years ago, Nikki didn’t know the random footage she took while on vacation would turn into a 16-minute short documentary about her family’s history and legacy. When Nikki came to Butler University, she wasn’t sure what to expect or where to go first. She just jumped in.

Nikki came to Butler because she loved the feel and energy of campus, and it was the first college campus she didn’t get lost on. Beginning as an exploratory major, she tried a little bit of everything and strayed away from everything she knew she didn’t like. Nikki was certain of one thing: she loved to make videos.

“I like video because it’s a more detailed photograph,” she said. “My family makes fun of me because I always have a camera out, but I tell them, ‘In 10 years, you’re going to really like this footage and see how you acted, what we looked like.’ You see so many more intricate, small, wonderful moments with video than you do with photography.”

Nikki and her freshman year roommate made lip sync covers to popular songs in their dorm room, then she would edit the footage with iMovie and upload it to their Youtube channel. At the time, Nikki didn’t think much of it until one video of her singing to “Hakuna Matata” gained over 4,000 views. With the help of her counselor who urged her to pursue video work, she eventually found a home in the college of communication.

Flash forward three years and Nikki will soon be graduating with degrees in digital media production and strategic communication. She’s completed multiple internships with companies like the Big East Digital Network and Webstream Productions, but her greatest experience was found in the heart of campus. As a video intern for Butler University’s Marketing and Communications office, Nikki connects with people and tells their story through Instagram.

“These people at Butler are so dang incredible,” Nikki said. “They are, honestly, the most passionate and caring people you’ll ever meet. I’ve seen that through this internship the most. I’ve learned about everyone’s true, genuine story and excitement about why they love Butler. I just love it.”

Although Nikki pushed herself to complete multiple internships, study abroad in Australia, complete two majors, and have room for a social life, her biggest challenge was gaining self-confidence. Her parents, one an accountant and the other a physical therapist, have supported her throughout her career but couldn’t help. Nikki’s creative side is unique, and she knew she had to work hard to be successful and find a job after college. Rather than change her major or redefine herself, Nikki took the challenge and reached her goals.

“I know what makes me happy,” she said. “Some people told me you go to school to find out who you are, and I thought, ‘No, college only solidified who I was.’ I knew who I was beforehand.”

Nikki took advantage of any opportunity presented to her. She helped create the newest Butler commercial through her internship on campus, and although it was stressful and a lot of work, she doesn’t regret taking on the challenge.

“The commercial project kick-started my confidence and made me realize I have a place here,” she said. “I think Butler and the community of care will stick with me for the rest of my life.”

She said she’ll miss Butler’s tight-knit community, the people, and her experiences, but she is ready to move on. Nikki is unsure where she’ll land after college, but knows she’ll continue making videos and telling stories.

 “I’m confident now -- watch me kill it.”




A Snapshot of Something Bigger

Senior Nikki Miceli uses her experience on campus to tell the stories of others. 


A Snapshot of Something Bigger

By Brittany Bluthardt '20

New Faces, New Mission: Diversity Center Gets a Makeover

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Jul 22 2019

The Efroymson Diversity Center is undergoing some cosmetic changes. 

The Center is getting a fresh paint job. Old books—like ones on how to update a resume using Word Perfect—are being removed and replaced with new ones. Dry erase boards, comfortable furniture, and communal spaces are in the works, along with an expanded prayer and meditation room.

But the physical transformation happening in Butler University’s Atherton Union is far from the only shift the Diversity Center has been experiencing over the last few months. With three new staff members and a brand new mission, the Center, known around campus as the DC, is ready for a makeover of different sorts. Instead of being largely viewed as just a physical space with a fixed location, the Center has set out to make its presence felt all around campus and the wider Indianapolis community. 

“We are mobile,” emphasizes Tiffany Reed, the new Director of Multicultural Programs and Services.

In the spring, Student Affairs conducted a study of the DC and its programs, including an outside consultant, feedback from more than 600 students, and stakeholders from more than 20 departments across campus. Three main themes emerged: They needed to address the physical space, increase outreach, and staff hired must be up to date on best practices when it comes to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

The physical transformation is underway. Three new hires have been made. And outreach is just one item on the Center’s long list of goals.

“Butler’s founding mission was focused on diversity and inclusivity,” says Vice President for Student Affairs Frank E. Ross, who led the DC study. “Given Ovid Butler and his role as an abolitionist who propagated the need for education for all, and access to education, it is imperative that we continue to work and strive to create conditions where all students can be successful and all students can thrive. The Diversity Center is critical to that mission. It is a hub for learning outside the classroom. It helps as we work to create and sustain an intentionally inclusive campus environment.”

The first key to bringing the mission to life was hiring three new faces of the DC. In addition to Reed, Gina Forrest, who served as interim Director of the Center since February after longtime Director Valerie Davidson retired, has been named Executive Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Thalia Anguiano has been named Assistant Director of Multicultural Programs and Services.

Forrest will primarily focus on partnering with others across campus to enhance the student experience through diversity, equity, and inclusion. She will work closely with students, staff, and faculty, facilitating new workshops and trainings on how to have crucial conversations. Forrest will also look beyond campus, working to create meaningful partnerships throughout the wider Indianapolis area. She will consider the resources Butler provides to its students, as well as how the University responds to bias incidents, for example, to ensure appropriate support.

“This work is so much more encompassing than the actual Center,” Forrest says. “We want diversity, equity, and inclusion to be part of the University’s identity. By having all these different initiatives happening in tandem, it becomes proactive work, not just a reactive thing we say we are doing.” 

Reed will work collaboratively with faculty, and the Office of Admission to hone in on student success and retention. Reed will focus on being intentional about supporting students. 

For example, this year’s Dawg Days 2.0, which strives to create a welcoming environment and provide connections, resources, and programs for students who are underrepresented at Butler, will include a wider range of students, such as first-generation students, 21st century scholars, multicultural students, students of color, and LGBTQ students. 

“It is important to create intentional spaces for students of color, or for the LBGTQ community, but it is also important for spaces to intersect because many of our students are also first generation or biracial. They want to know how they fit in at a predominantly white institution,” says Reed, who as a student at IUPUI often studied and hung out at Butler’s Diversity Center because IUPUI didn’t have one.

Because of her experiences at IUPUI—fighting to get a Diversity Center of their own as an undergraduate and seeing firsthand how helpful it was to have a space on Butler’s campus—she also hopes to create partnerships with other universities. 

Reed has also been busy revamping the mentorship program, now dubbed the DC Squad. It will be much more robust, encouraging ongoing relationships instead of having mentors meet with their mentees just once or twice a semester. 

Anguiano will focus on programming and working with the student organizations that are housed in the DC. 

“I plan on challenging our student orgs within the Center to work much more collaboratively with one another to enhance dialogue and bring different perspectives from different lenses,” she says. “If it is Hispanic Heritage month, we might look at what it means to be Latinx and part of the LGBTQ community. We want to encompass different identities and bring more collaboration.”

As much as their roles differ, they will all work as one unit, striving to bring the mission of the DC to all parts of Butler’s campus, and beyond.

The Center’s physical space might be getting a new makeover, but in reality, if everything is working, the DC will be traveling to a building near you soon, collaborating with faculty across campus, visiting classrooms, partnering in many different ways.

“The goal is for you to feel connected to the DC as a collective unit,” Reed says. “It is about utilizing all of our different powers to move the space beyond this space. For us, the Center could be in Jordan Hall, a residence hall, a sorority house. We want it to travel wherever it is needed. That’s the ultimate goal around diversity, equity, and inclusion. That way we are reaching everyone.”


New Faces, New Mission: Diversity Center Gets a Makeover

Butler's Diversity Center has three new staff members, and a brand new mission. 

Jul 22 2019 Read more
The new Lacy School of Business buiding.

Butler’s Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business Unveils New Business Partners


PUBLISHED ON Jul 15 2019

Indianapolis — The Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business within Butler University’s Andre B. Lacy School of Business has announced 15 accredited partners to help member companies achieve their goals.

The Center, serving as a strategic advisory group for closely held businesses, designed the accredited partner program to provide Center Members access to a community of trusted resources. The lineup of partners brings a diverse set of skills, and expertise, for established companies of all sizes and industries.

Unlike general networking associations, the Center’s model is built to proactively identify a Member Company’s specific gaps between their current, and their targeted, performance. Once these specific gaps are identified, the Center assists Members by connecting them with Accredited Partners based on topic and expertise.

Below is the full lineup of the new accredited partner companies:


“The Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business is excited to welcome our core group of accredited partners. Our focus has always been to help closely held businesses succeed, and by connecting our members with these high quality of partners, we’re well positioned to do that,” said Mark McFatridge, Director for The Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business. “We vet and onboard partners who understand closely held business dynamics and roadblocks. All bring areas of expertise that will help take our member companies to the next level.”

About Butler’s Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business

The Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business is focused on helping closely held businesses succeed. Housed within Butler's Lacy School of Business, the Center connects closely held businesses with the resources and advisors needed for them to achieve their goals. Center members gain a Butler-backed competitive edge for their business through research, business valuations, planning, educational opportunities, referral partners, and coaching. Learn more about how becoming a member can help move your organization forward.

The new Lacy School of Business buiding.

Butler’s Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business Unveils New Business Partners

The Center has announced 15 accredited partners to help member companies achieve their goals.

Jul 15 2019 Read more

Be a Positive Force for Others, Singh Tells December Grads


PUBLISHED ON Dec 16 2017

See yourselves as pioneers with big ideas and as a generation with transcendent vision, 2017 Winter Commencement speaker Kanwal Prakash (KP) Singh advised Butler University’s 150 newest alumni.


“You already know that many of you will travel to destinations outside the familiar,” Singh, a prolific Indianapolis-based artist who came to the United States from India 50 years ago, said during the December 16 ceremony at Clowes Memorial Hall. “You will be facing an increasingly interconnected and intensely competitive world. Immersing yourselves and understanding cultural and civic frameworks in place will be an important first step to unlocking your first doors. Know that there is much to learn from other struggles and experiences.”

Singh, who was awarded an honorary doctorate, said he and his family were among the millions who faced life and death challenges at the time of the Partition of India in 1947 and during their escape to safety in the new India. His goal since then has been to radiate a spirit of “Charhdikala” (positive optimism) in all seasons “and dedicate my life to ideas that make a difference.”

He recommended that the graduates “be a willing shoulder and positive force for others,” and that they shape a future that best reflects our collective gifts and universal hopes.

Singh also said the graduates should leave behind unfounded stereotypes of faiths, cultures, and communities different from their own.

“In today’s multicultural society with a wide spectrum of backgrounds, lifestyles, and perspectives, it is critical to adopt and exercise the art and spirit of mutual respect; be a trusted team player; and as a leader, to tap all talents for the tasks at hand,” he said.

The December 2017 graduates included 50 students from the Lacy School of Business, 44 from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, 32 from the College of Education, nine from the Jordan College of the Arts, eight from the College of Communication, and seven from the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences.

Former Trustee Robert Postlethwait and his wife, Kathi, also received honorary degrees. President James M. Danko praised the Postlethwaits as “exemplars in their dedication to serving others.”

Robert Postlethwait advised the graduates to “take care of your brain, feed the hungry, and routinely evaluate the impact you’re having on people and issues you care deeply about.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Be a Positive Force for Others, Singh Tells December Grads

See yourselves as pioneers with big ideas and as a generation with transcendent vision, 2017 Winter Commencement speaker Kanwal Prakash (KP) Singh advised Butler University’s 150 newest alumni.

Dec 16 2017 Read more

SGA: Committed to Your Campus Experience

By Malachi White '20

Were you apart of your high school’s student government? Did you help plan dances, prom, student events or fundraisers? Have you ever wanted to be apart of something that was super cool and fulfilling? I ask these questions because that was me when I was in high school. Although I am not as active in student government as I used to be, I still reap many of the benefits of those involved in Student Government Association on Butler’s campus.

Butler University’s SGA is committed to improving your campus experience. They represent the student body and support over 150 student organizations on campus while addressing student concerns and providing engaging programming with the Butler community. SGA connects the students to the administration; building strong relationships with the faculty and staff addressing student concerns. Some of SGA’s functions include providing a free weekend shuttle service for students, offering grants for represented student organizations, and hosting exciting student events, like diversity programming, concerts, and philanthropy fundraisers.

Taylor Leslie is a senior international business major and a SGA Diversity and Inclusion Board member. She is a major advocate for the push to bring notable and different speakers to campus. “My experience with SGA has been great. I’ve been a member of the Diversity and Inclusion Board since my sophomore year,” Taylor said. “My roles within SGA have given me the opportunity from a student position to help make changes in the way that diversity and inclusion is perceived on campus.”

Another student involved in SGA is Chris Sanders. He is a junior psychology major, a co-chair for SGA’s Concerts Committee and a student assistant for the Office of Health and Education. His experiences have made working within SGA some of his best memories while on campus. “I didn’t know what I was really getting into when I joined, but if someone would have told me that my Butler experience would including meeting famous artists such as T-Pain, Kesha, and DNCE, I would not have believed them, but this is exactly what happened.” Chris said.

SGA can open several doors for students. Once apart of SGA team, new benefits and opportunities open up for everyone on campus in the Butler community.

“Other students should consider joining SGA because it gives you an opportunity to be a leader on this campus,” Taylor said. “You get a chance to influence and be apart of the change that is happening on campus. You’ll also make connections with many students and find a team of leaders that have similar passions as yourself.”

Not only is being apart of SGA an awesome opportunity, but it is an important part of campus life on campus. “I think SGA is very important to have on campus.” Chris said.“Without SGA, we wouldn’t be able to have great events such as BUDM, Butlerpalooza, or Spring Sports as all of these are all planned by different SGA committees. SGA pays a critical role in facilitating important relationships between all members of the Butler community.”

SGA Office
Student LifeCampus

SGA: Committed to Your Campus Experience

Were you apart of your high school’s student government? Did you help plan dances, prom, student events or fundraisers?


Scholarship Supports Student's Research of Refugees in Germany

BY Marc Allan MFA `18

PUBLISHED ON Apr 03 2019

On a Butler University Honors Program and Modern Languages, Literatures, and Cultures-sponsored “Bulldogs to Berlin” spring break trip in 2018, Addy McKown ’21 became fascinated by how the Germans had taken in 2 million Syrian and Turkish refugees, and how those refugees have integrated and assimilated.

“I saw neighborhoods that were devoted to thousands of people from Turkey and Syria and how the city swallows them up and lets German culture wash over them,” she says. “Yet their native cultures are still prevalent in their neighborhoods with their markets, with their restaurants and cafés, and how they garden. They let them adjust to their new life while retaining the fondness and heritage of their old life.”

Her observation became the impetus for her honors thesis, A Cross-Cultural Comparison of the Assimilation of Twenty-First Century Refugees in Modern Cultures. It also earned her the annual Bruce and Lucy Gerstein Holocaust Education Travel Fund, an endowed fund established by Indianapolis dermatologist and friend of the University Dr. David Gerstein. The Fund, named for Gerstein’s parents, supports travel and research related to the Holocaust.

For her thesis, McKown is comparing how Germany and the United States are handling the current refugee crisis, and how the Holocaust left residual effects on Germany’s foreign policy and relief aid efforts.

McKown, a double major in Critical Communications and Media Studies and Human Communication and Organizational Leadership, is spending the spring 2019 semester at Humboldt University in Germany. She’s also traveled on weekends to Vienna, Prague, and Dresden to see how they're taking in refugees.

In Berlin, she’s visited Tempelhof Airport, where some refugees have been housed in hangars, and she’s planning to go back to talk to people living there.

McKown, who’s from New Castle, Indiana, says she chose Butler after visiting campus and meeting representatives of the study abroad and honors programs, and her future faculty advisor, Associate Professor of Communications Allison Harthcock.

“I immediately fell in love with the possibilities,” she says. “I love to travel. I was fortunate to have parents who exposed me to that from a young age. So hearing about all the study abroad opportunities was great. I came here and you feel like a family, but a family that's going to push you and not let you settle for mediocre. That was really important to me.”

Jason Lantzer, Assistant Director of the University Honors Program, describes McKown as “a wonderful student and a terrific representation of our Honors Program.” He’s taught her in a couple of classes and was one of the professors who led the first trip she took to Germany.

“The Gerstein Fund not only helped her achieve her goal of going back, but is helping to lay the groundwork for her planned honors thesis,” Lantzer says. “Having just returned from the second time of Bulldogs to Berlin, it was great to get to see Addy while we were in the city and see just how much she has grown in the year since she first arrived.”

McKown says she’s unsure of her plans after graduation—she might apply for a Fulbright Award, go to graduate school, or find a job. She’s interested in working within outreach programs, a liaison between the public and the organization.

“I want to be on the people side of things, whether that's organizing training, doing research sessions in groups to find out how to better market products or word our statements,” she says.

In the meantime, she plans to keep her options open and explore the world. She thinks others should do the same.

“It's OK to explore something that hasn't been explored yet,” she says. “To witness this refugee crisis firsthand, to see what such a crisis is doing to the world, you can get involved and step in in some sort of way, whether that just ends up educating yourself or if you come over here and start a thesis, if you join the Peace Corps. Whatever it is, I think it's just important to open your eyes up and see the world and see what you can do with it.”



Scholarship Supports Student's Research of Refugees in Germany

Addy McKown '21 has been awarded a scholarship from the Bruce and Lucy Gerstein Holocaust Education Travel Fund.

Apr 03 2019 Read more

2016-2017 Academic Year in Review


PUBLISHED ON May 08 2017

The 2016–2017 academic year began with the largest class ever—1,272 students—coming to Butler. It concluded with 955 newly minted graduates, two large gifts to the University, and the groundbreaking for a new housing facility to replace Schwitzer Hall.

In between, the University was again named Most Innovative School in the Midwest as well as one of the healthiest in the country. Butler opened the new Fairview House housing facility, earned LEED Gold certification for the Hinkle Fieldhouse renovations, added a new fraternity, and much more.

We also lost several cherished members of the Butler community, including basketball star Joel Cornette ‘04, longtime Professor of Voice André Aerne, and Patricia Cochran, the great-great-granddaughter of Butler University founder Ovid Butler.

Here’s a look back:


  • The University welcomed a record first-year class of 1,272 students on move-in day. The class included 46 Valedictorians and 11 Salutatorians, 2 National Merit Finalists, 21 Lilly Scholars, and 45 21st Century Scholars.
  • A Gallup-Purdue Index study found that Butler alumni are thriving personally and professionally. Butler outperformed its peers across most items in graduates’ assessment of their student experience including faculty support and experiential learning, affinity for their alma mater, and overall well-being.
  • Investigating the Rubik’s cube, comparing contracts for restricted free agents in the NBA, and constructing Cantor polynomials were just some of the research projects Butler students undertook at Mathematics Research Camp, an eight-day intensive experience designed to introduce students to mathematical research.
  • Joel Cornette, a key member of Butler’s first Sweet 16 team, died. He was 35. A celebration of his life was held at Hinkle Fieldhouse on August 22. The University established the Joel Cornette Scholarship Fund, which will provide scholarship support for future Butler Bulldogs. Contributions in honor may be made online.
  • Butler was awarded a $600,000 Indiana State Department of Health grant for a two-year project to determine whether dementia patients’ lives can be improved through the use of personal musical playlists. In the project, called Music First, faculty and students from across Butler—in Psychology, Music, Pharmacy, Communication Disorders, and other areas—studied 100 residents in the American Village retirement home throughout the 2016–2017 academic year.
  • Professor Emeritus of Music James Briscoe, Professor of Education Suneeta Kercood, and Professor of Communication Ann Savage were honored with Butler University’s 2016 Distinguished Faculty Awards.
  • President James Danko was reappointed as the BIG EAST conference’s representative on the NCAA Division I Presidential Forum.
  • Speaking as part of Academic Day, author Kelsey Timmerman told first-year students that they should do volunteer work, study abroad, and incorporate one thing a day into their lives that provides someone else with genuine opportunity.
  • Bekah Pollard ’16, an Art + Design major, was awarded a 2016 Arts Council of Indianapolis Arts Journalism Fellowship to produce stories for The Indianapolis Star.
  • Over 1,200 volunteers participated in Bulldogs Into the Streets, Butler’s annual service program.
  • The old pool section of Hinkle Fieldhouse, which has been converted into a weight room, training center, and administration offices, received LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. The removal of the pool was part of the $34 million renovation of Hinkle Fieldhouse, which took place in 2013–2014.
  • Associate Professor of Theatre Rob Koharchik and Butler Theatre alumnus Jeffery Martin ’93 each received one of the “surprise” $10,000 awards given by The Indianapolis Foundation to Indianapolis-based organizations and individuals. Koharchik and Martin were recognized under the category “Indy Professional Theatre MVPs,” creative professionals whose work in theater contributes to the vibrancy of the cultural community and the strength of our city.
  • Fairview House, the new $43 million, 633-bed residence hall located along Sunset Avenue, officially opened. The residence hall features three- and four-bedroom pods with two students to a room. Each pair of students shares a bathroom, and each has his or her own sink and large closet.


  • Butler participated in a weeklong celebration of Indianapolis native Kurt Vonnegut with Butler Theatre’s staged reading of Vonnegut’s play Happy Birthday, Wanda June and Indy Opera’s world premiere of the opera version of that play, with music written by Butler Music Professor Richard Auldon Clark.
  • The Center for Urban Ecology (CUE) was awarded a three-year, nearly $300,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to establish the CUE Farm on campus as a hub for undergraduate education and research. The money supports Butler faculty in the development and implementation of four urban agriculture research modules in biology, chemistry, ecology, and environmental science courses and to study the impact of those modules on student learning.
  • Assistant Professor of Biology Lindsay Lewellyn was awarded a $410,656 National Institutes of Health grant to study egg development in fruit flies, which ultimately could lead to breakthroughs in the area of human infertility. The money is being used to pay for students to work in the lab over the summer, presenting findings at research conferences, hiring a full-time research technician during the academic year, and supplies.
  • Kaveh Akbar MFA ’15 was one of five recipients of the 2016 Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowships, a $25,800 prize intended to encourage the further study and writing of poetry. The fellowships are available to all U.S. poets 21 to 31 years old.
  • Delorean J. Menifee was named Director of Admission.
  • Butler University and the Center for Urban Ecology were inducted into the Green Lights Hall of Fame. The Green Light Awards—a series of climate solutions compiled by Sustainable Indiana 2016 as part of the Bicentennial—are distributed to organizations and individuals who are at the forefront of promoting sustainability across the state of Indiana.
  • For the second consecutive year, Butler University was ranked as the Most Innovative School among Midwestern Regional Universities, according to the 2017 edition of U.S. News and World Report Best Colleges. Butler was also recognized in the categories of Best Undergraduate Teaching and the Best Colleges for Veterans, and appeared on the national shortlist of excellence for First-Year Experience, Internships, Undergraduate Research, and Study Abroad.
  • Butler was named one of the 26 healthiest colleges in the country by, a website devoted to healthy living.
  • CommonLit Inc., a company run by Michelle (Skinner) Brown ’09, received a federal Department of Education grant to help fund and expand the organization. CommonLit Inc., a completely free, online compilation of literary and teaching resources that was created to try to close the “secondary literacy gap,” will receive $3.9 million over two years.​


  • At the annual Alumni Awards Recognition Program for extraordinary professional achievement and service, Butler honored nine alumni: Butler Medal, John Hargrove ’69; Butler Service Medal, George Geib; Robert Todd Duncan Alumni Achievement Award, Jen Christensen ’94; Katherine Merrill Graydon Alumni Service Award, Maribeth Zay Fischer ’74; Hilton Ultimus Brown Alumni Achievement Award, Shawn M. Gage ’04, PA-C; Joseph Irwin Sweeny Alumni Service Award, Amy N. Lenell ’07, PharmD, CLC; Ovid Butler Society Mortar Award, Chris ’79 and Sally (McFarland) ’81 Wirthwein; and Ovid Butler Society Foundation Award, Jennifer L. White ’00 and David White.
  • Associate Professor of Education Katie Brooks was awarded a $2 million U.S. Department of Education grant to train 80 current or potential teachers to become licensed to teach English Language Learning students. The five-year grant is intended to help alleviate the chronic shortage of English as a New Language (ENL) teachers. The grant will pay for 20 college graduates who have a bachelor’s degree in a licensable area such as biology, math, social studies, world languages, or English to get both a teaching license and an ENL license.
  • The Board of Trustees elected Attorney Robert T. Wildman and Life Sciences executive Lynne Zydowsky ’81 to special one-year terms on the Board. Both will be eligible for full three-year terms in June 2017. Wildman is a member of the Business Services Group, the Venture Capital and Private Equity Group, and the Real Estate Group of Bose McKinney & Evans LLP. Zydowsky, President of Zydowsky Consultants, is an experienced executive in the Life Sciences industry who has been involved in the launching and building of many successful companies.
  • Longtime Professor of Voice André Aerne died on Sunday, October 16, in Petoskey, Michigan. He was 84. Aerne taught at Butler from 1966–1998 and also was often featured as a soloist in the Romantic Festival programs.
  • Butler’s first Mock Mediation team did well at the Brenau Invitational Mediation Tournament in Gainesville, Georgia. Russ Hunter ’17 and Anthony Murdock ’17 both took home “Top Mediator.” Hunter also was awarded “Top Advocate/Client,” as was his teammate Nick Fox ’18.
  • Forty-nine members of FFA (Future Farmers of America), who came from as far away as Massachusetts, Connecticut, Arizona, and Washington state to attend the annual FFA convention in Indianapolis, took a tour of the CUE Farm at Butler to see how the University is approaching sustainable, environmentally responsible urban farming.
  • The Center for Urban Ecology Farm became the new home of the first fully automated mobile greenhouse, an 8-foot-wide by 32-foot-long structure designed and built by Ball State University architecture students to enable the CUE Farm to start plants earlier in the season. The $50,000 project was built with a grant from the Butler Innovation Fund
  • Erin Vincent was hired as Director of Academic Program Development and Innovation, a new position designed to help faculty, staff, and administrators move new academic programs from an idea to program launch.


  • Brandie Oliver, Assistant Professor of School Counseling in the College of Education, was named Indiana School Counselor Association Counselor Educator of the Year.
  • The Center for Citizenship and Community celebrated its 20th anniversary of connecting Butler students and the University with the community.
  • A team of five Butler University students won the Purdue University Parrish Library Case Competition, an annual contest that challenges students to use their business research skills to solve a problem for a company. Sammie Chalmers, Taylor Gillenwater, Nicole Henrich, Karly Krebs, and Allison Wolff beat more than 20 teams from Indiana University and Purdue University.
  • Eight Lacy School of Business students took the annual Wall Street Trek trip to get a good look at Wall Street—JPMorgan Chase, the Stock Exchange, Blue Mountain Capital—and Johnson & Johnson headquarters in New Brunswick, New Jersey.
  • Junior Jacob Reeves won the 2016–2017 Hendricks Fellowship for his project studying how wildlife use Butler University’s campus as their home. The Center for High Achievement and Scholarly Engagement (CHASE) awards the scholarship to a student who completes a scientific research project in the area of conservation or Indiana ecosystems.
  • Jacklyn Gries, a second-year Pharmacy major from Evansville, Indiana, was selected as Butler’s 2016 winner of the Independent Colleges of Indiana’s Realizing the Dream scholarship. This scholarship goes to students who are first in their families to go to college, have been selected by their colleges for outstanding achievement in their first year, and are successfully advancing towards completing their bachelor’s degrees.
  • Butler became the first Indiana school to be invited to present at a Teach to Lead Preparation Summit held in Washington, DC, by the federal Department of Education.


  • Patricia Cochran, the great-great-granddaughter of Butler University founder Ovid Butler and great-niece of two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author Booth Tarkington, died on December 5. She was 97.
  • Sigma Gamma Rho, the sorority founded at Butler University on November 12, 1922, gave Butler a gift to establish the Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Inc. 7 Founders Endowed Scholarship to honor the seven education majors and public school teachers who started the organization. The scholarship will be awarded annually beginning in the fall to a student enrolled in the College of Education.
  • The curtain rose on the new Theatre Department Scene Shop, which moved from cramped quarters in the basement of the Holcomb Building to much larger, well-ventilated space in the west side of the Sunset Avenue Parking Garage. Half the space will be used to build scenery for Theatre productions; the other half will be used for costume storage for the Theatre and Dance departments.
  • Victoria Kreyden ’17, a Biology/Spanish double-major from Carmel, Indiana, won first place in the undergraduate poster session at the 2016 American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) meeting in San Francisco, California, for her poster presentation Investigation of the neuronal functions of the SUMO conjugating enzyme UBC-9 at the C. elegans neuromuscular junction. Kreyden’s presentation was judged best of more than 100 by undergraduates from around the country and abroad.
  • Retired Indiana Supreme Court Justice Randall Shepard spoke at 2016 Winter Commencement, telling the 138 graduates that they should clutch their diploma with a sense of optimism because they are in America and they are educated. “The value of an education earned in 2016 at universities like Butler is more tangible than ever,” he said. “Your decision and your family’s decision to persevere in education is the best possible launching pad for a successful career and a successful life.”
  • Veteran police officer John Conley succeeded Ben Hunter as Butler University’s Chief of Public Safety. Conley joined the Butler University Police Department in 2014, after working with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) for 40 years.
  • Associate Professor Kelli Esteves, who has taught in the College of Education since 2010, was named the Richard W. Guyer Chair in Education.


  • Responding to a note on Facebook, Tracy Tyndall Pabst ’98 donated a kidney to Laura Coker Blandford ’97. The two were Delta Gamma sorority sisters but not close friends.
  • A three-judge panel from the Indiana Court of Appeals heard a case on the Butler campus as part of its Appeals on Wheels program that brings the court to different locations to show the public what it does.
  • Thirteen Indiana public school superintendents from all over the state began to participate in the first EPIC (Educators Preparing Inspired Change), a joint venture of Butler University and the Indiana Association of Public School Superintendents to help great educators transform the business and constituent-services aspects of their work.
  • Singer Ben Davis, who spent a couple of years as a Butler student, returned to the Clowes Memorial Hall stage for the first time in 20 years, this time as Captain Georg von Trapp in the national touring company of The Sound of Music.
  • Jason Davidson ’01, an instructor in the Lacy School of Business, wrote a book on Visual Basic for Applications, the popular programming language that is used to create and customize Microsoft Office programs. VBA for Microsoft Office 2016, published by Pearson, is a 216-page, step-by-step guide that’s geared toward students.
  • Professor of Music David Murray was awarded the International Society of Bassists’s 2017 Special Recognition Award for Solo Performance, which goes to a person “who has contributed special skills, knowledge, projects, and other such positive works in the furthering of ISB ideals.” The award is given every two years by the organization, which represents nearly 3,000 members in more than 40 countries.
  • Butler students to make the trip to New York to be part of National Retail Federation’s Big Show, the annual showcase for retail merchants that also lets students see the enormous variety of career options available to them in retail.
  • Butler University placed 808 students on the Dean’s List for the fall 2016 semester.
  • A NASA representative brought moon rocks to College of Education Professor Catherine Pangan’s Science and Social Studies Methods class.


  • The Butler Muslim Student Association hosted a Unity Walk around campus to protest the federal government’s attempted ban on Muslim refugees and immigrants from seven Muslim countries.
  • Students and supporters participated in the Polar Plunge, raising over $53,000 for Special Olympics Indiana.
  • The second annual Day of Giving shattered expectations, with faculty, staff, students, alumni, parents, and friends making 887 gifts totaling more than $137,000. In addition, the University was able to “unlock” more than $103,000 in challenge funding.
  • Isaac Warshawsky ’20 was selected as the second recipient of the Bruce and Lucy Gerstein Holocaust Education Travel Fund, which enabled him to visit Poland over spring break.


  • Beta Theta Pi was selected as the University’s new fraternity, with colonization of the Butler chapter to begin in fall 2017. A location for a future chapter house will be determined, and the University will assist in selecting the site.
  • Butler’s men’s basketball team advanced to its first Sweet 16 since 2011 with a 74-65 win over Middle Tennessee State.
  • Juniors Alex Tison, Claire Cox, and Kaylynn Cline were flown to Chicago to appear on an ESPN quiz show called Bracket Genius.
  • Associate Professor of Music Education Daniel Bolin was selected as the 2017 inductee to the Gamma Chapter, Phi Beta Mu Hall of Fame. Phi Beta Mu is the highest honorary fraternity for international band directors.
  • Twelve 5-foot-by-5-foot brain sculptures, each linked to a different theme in neuroscience, went on display on campus for six weeks as part of One Butler: The Brain Project. The sculptures, commissioned by neuroanatomist Jill Bolte Taylor, were displayed throughout campus.
  • The Center for Urban Ecology Farm began to pursue mushroom cultivation, thanks to an Indy Urban Mushrooms grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s North Central Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program.
  • Butler University sophomore Lauren Ciulla struck gold, earning the Congressional Award Gold Medal, the U.S. Congress’s award for young Americans who set and achieve goals in four program areas: voluntary public service, personal development, physical fitness, and expedition/exploration.


  • The estate of Winstan R. “Bud” Sellick ’47 and his wife, Jacqueline (Blomberg) ’44, has given $9.4 million to the University. The gift will be shared among Butler Athletics, the Lacy School of Business, and general University support.
  • Twenty-six Butler University students were elected to Phi Beta Kappa, the honor society that recognizes the best and brightest liberal arts and sciences undergraduates from 286 top schools across the nation.
  • Education professors Susan Adams and Brooke Kandel-Cisco were part of a team recognized with a B.E.S.T. Award from WFYI (Channel 20) for its “exemplary work ethic and performance” and its efforts to develop a curriculum guide for the station’s documentary Attucks: The School That Opened A City.
  • Four Butler students were named Top Four Paper Winners at the University’s 2017 Undergraduate Research Conference. Kelsey McDougall, John Anderton, Taylor Pearson, and Viki Tomanov’s projects were judged to be the best among the 21 students from five different universities who submitted their completed papers for competitive review.
  • Theatre Professor Owen Schaub announced his retirement after 37 years at the University. “Having been at Butler has been a very warm, rewarding, and humane experience,” he said. Other professors who retired this year after long tenures at Butler include Katarina Dulckeit, Richard McGowan, Jeanne Van Tyle, Laurie Pylitt, and Stanley DeRusha.
  • Frank E. Ross III, a national leader in student affairs with 22 years of experience and degrees from both Ball State and Indiana universities, was named Vice President for Student Affairs. He will take over the position in June.
  • Madison Sauerteig, a junior from Arcadia, Indiana, who has done extensive volunteer work with Riley Hospital for Children, received the 2017 John Weidner Endowed Scholarship for Altruism.
  • Junior Caitlyn Foye, a Biology major from Newburgh, Indiana, was named a 2017–2018 Goldwater Scholar, the most prestigious undergraduate award given in the sciences.


  • A $5 million financial contribution from Old National Bank will be used to create the Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business, which will provide privately owned businesses throughout Indiana with training, education, mentoring, and networking opportunities to help them succeed.
  • The Lacy School of Business’ student-run insurance company began operations after the Bermuda Monetary Authority granted licensing approval for the business. The company was created to give students hands-on experience and prepare them for an industry that is anticipated to need tens of thousands of new employees over the next seven years.
  • Students, faculty, staff, and alumni signed a steel beam that will be part of the construction of the new 647-bed housing unit that will replace Schwitzer Hall. The first occupants of the new housing will move in in August 2018.
  • John Lechleiter, retired CEO of Eli Lilly and Co., told the spring 2017 graduates that they should set their sights high and strive for excellence, treat others the way they would like to be treated, and think and act independently. Butler graduates 955 students on May 6, 2017.



2016-2017 Academic Year in Review

The 2016–2017 academic year began with the largest class ever—1,272 students—coming to Butler. It concluded with 955 newly minted graduates, two large gifts to the University, and the groundbreaking for a new housing facility to replace Schwitzer Hall.

May 08 2017 Read more

In The News

LA Business Journal | August 23, 2019

Signs of Change at Riot

Indianapolis Business Journal | August 23, 2019

Universities create spaces to collaborate

Diverse: Issues in Higher Education | August 22, 2019

Butler’s Data Boot Camp To Teach In-Demand Skills

Risk & Insurance | August 21, 2019

This Risk Management Professor Is Fed Up With Emus and Geckos

Indy Star | August 19, 2019

Roncalli accused of silencing students who supported ousted guidance counselor

WISH-TV | August 14, 2019

Look inside Butler’s $50 million Lacy School of Business

Inside Indiana Business | August 14, 2019

Butler Unveils New Building for Lacy School

WFYI | August 13, 2019

Butler University Business School Moves Into New Building

Inside Indiana Business | August 7, 2019

Princeton Review Lists Top Colleges of Indiana

Associated Press | August 5, 2019

GateHouse, Gannett to merge for $1.4B, build newspaper giant

USA Today | August 5, 2019

GateHouse Media owner to acquire USA TODAY owner Gannett

USA Today | August 5, 2019

In the wake of two more hate-fueled mass shootings, when do we call it domestic terrorism?

Inside Indiana Business | August 3, 2019

I on Education: Butler's Big Projects

Techpoint Index | August 1, 2019

Can Indiana become the hub for the global esports phenomenon?

WISH TV | July 31, 2019

Financial tips to help new college students plan and save

Courier & Press | July 25, 2019

Summer day trips: Here's your guide to must see historic landmarks in Indiana

Indy Star | July 25, 2019

Bloomington women's softball team wins Busch sponsorship; beer company announces them as 'dudes'

WFYI | July 23, 2019

Two Butler Faculty Receive Grant For National Study

Inside Indiana Business | July 23, 2019

Reiff Returns to Butler University

Inside Indiana Business | July 22, 2019

Banner Year' for Butler Fundraising

CBS-4 | July 20, 2019

Celebrate 50 years since the moon landing at Butler’s Holcomb Observatory

Inside Indiana Business | July 19, 2019

Butler Adds Old National Bank Chairman

Indianapolis Recorder | July 18, 2019

What if health insurance was like a gym membership?

Indy Star | June 30, 2019

How Tonya Bergeson-Dana coped with the loss of husband Paul Dana after Indy car wreck

Indianapolis Business Journal | June 25, 2019

Former Taco Bell franchisee giving Butler University $5 million

Inside Indiana Business | June 25, 2019

Former Board Chair Commits $5M to Butler

Indy Star | June 19, 2019

Hocus Pocus' Kathy Najimy and MasterChef Junior are on Butler Arts Center's new season

Indy Star | June 17, 2019

Shelvin Mack is still a Butler student cramming for tests, even as he plays in NBA

USA Today | June 16, 2019

Day after a nationwide register outage, Target's tech troubles continue on a smaller scale

Associated Press | June 14, 2019

4-term Indiana GOP Rep. Susan Brooks won’t seek reelection

Indy Star | June 14, 2019

Indy 500 heritage makes a home for Guggman Haus Brewing Co.

Indiana Business Journal | June 14, 2019

DePauw grants $1M from endowment to student investment group

Associated Press | June 13, 2019

Butler University plans $100M science complex for campus

Inside Indiana Business | June 13, 2019

Butler Approves 'Significant And Historic' Project

USA Today | June 11, 2019

Measles cases surpass 1,000 in span of 6 months; medical experts worry about summer travel

Indianapolis Business Journal | June 10, 2019

‘Agile and adaptable’ is the formula for Butler’s biz school and its soon-to-open new home

Inside Indiana Business | June 9, 2019

Butler Receives Gift from FirstPerson Founder

Chalkbeat | June 1, 2019

You don’t have to go to kindergarten in Indiana. But educators say it ‘levels the playing field’

Indianapolis Business Journal | May 31, 2019

2019 Innovation Issue: Many questions, fewer answers at intersection of AI, ethics

USA Today | May 20, 2019

Measles cases continue to climb; 'eliminated' disease see highest total in 25 years

Washington Post | May 17, 2019

Here’s how to watch the full flower ‘blue moon’ Saturday night

WTHR | May 13, 2019

Mom graduating from Butler University has 'crazy' story of determination

Psychology Today | May 8, 2019

Learning from the Most Popular Sport in the World

USA Today | May 6, 2019

Measles cases continue record climb, reaching 764 in 23 states

CBS-4 | April 29, 2019

Student clinic providing services for low-income neighborhood

Education Dive | April 28, 2019

Brain breaks can refocus, relax students while enhancing SEL

IBJ | April 26, 2019

British retail giant that bought Finish Line is taking slow approach to U.S. market

WTHR | April 26, 2019

Victims of Sri Lanka attack mourned in 2 Indianapolis services

Associated Press | April 24, 2019

G2 Launches New Global Solution to Help Identify Risk Associated with Illegal Pharmaceutical Sales

The Atlantic | April 24, 2019

How Sri Lanka’s Christians Became a Target

Fox 59 | April 16, 2019

Butler works with Indiana Department of Insurance to ensure right drugs are covered

USA Today | April 10, 2019

New York City declares measles public health emergency, blames 'fake science'

USA Today | April 10, 2019

Poll: Americans say Trump has made race relations worse

Indiana Business Journal | April 8, 2019

Butler pharmacists develop tool to guide insurers on drug formularies

USA Today | April 8, 2019

Booming measles cases rocket toward record: Up nearly 100 from last week

Indianapolis Recorder | April 5, 2019

The mind before, during and after opioid abuse

Indiana Business Journal | April 1, 2019

Ex-employees to testify exec knew drugs were dangerous

Washington Post | March 28, 2019

Esports continue TV push with ESPN and Turner, sparking enthusiasm, ire

Indy Star | March 22, 2019

You might be able to see the northern lights in Indiana this weekend. Here's where to go.

Indy Star | March 19, 2019

Worm supermoon' will be the last of 2019. Here's when to see it in Indiana.

Fox 59 | March 8, 2019

Your Town Friday March Madness: Butler University

WFYI | February 14, 2019

Local Universities Team With Marion County Prosecutor's Office To Address Dating Violence

Indiana Business Journal | February 14, 2019

Butler lands alumni gifts for business school, athletics

Inside Indiana Business | February 14, 2019

Florida Couple Makes $1M Gift to Butler University

Fox59 | February 13, 2019

Butler University hosts cybersecurity event for local students

Psychology Today | February 12, 2019

Why smart people sext

Indiana Business Journal | February 8, 2019

Butler University professor Barry King is using algorithm-based machine learning to predict NBA game attendance

USA Today | February 4, 2019

Sick, deeply toxic' culture: Ralph Northam hails from a time of troubled race relations in Virginia, US

Indy Star | January 28, 2019

Here's why President Trump was tweeting support for an Indiana Bible bill

Indy Star | January 25, 2019

Just an absolute quirk': Pacers and Colts stars don’t just miss games, they miss seasons

New York Times | January 20, 2019

The Lunar Eclipse and Supermoon: How to Watch it Tonight

CBS-4 Indy | January 17, 2019

Social media posts could affect college applications, new study finds

Yahoo | January 14, 2019

President Trump claims a wheel is older than a wall in plea for border wall. Is he right?

USA Today | January 14, 2019

Here's your guide to the 'super blood wolf moon eclipse' that's coming this weekend

Inside Indiana Business | January 14, 2019

Kenzie graduates first-ever cohort

Indy Star | January 14, 2019

Butler Arts Center's new director has deep roots. His grandpa hung first curtain at Clowes

USA Today | January 1, 2019

Young Muslims find meaning and inspiration in science fiction novels

USA Today | December 26, 2018

January 2019 lunar eclipse: How to watch the super blood wolf moon eclipse

NY Times | November 17, 2018

America’s Election Grid Remains a Patchwork of Vulnerabilities

CBS-4 | November 7, 2018

Is bipartisanship achievable? Depends who you ask

VICE | November 2, 2018

The Basics of Starting a Business When You Don't Know Where The Hell to Begin

The Guardian | October 26, 2018

Georgia: voter suppression allegations roil governor's race

USA Today | October 24, 2018

Trump tones down attacks, calls for civility after devices mailed to Democrats, CNN

IndyStar | October 22, 2018

Doyel: Butler's bulldog mascot gives admission news to kid who beat cancer

Associated Press | October 20, 2018

Democrats eye 2 competitive House races in red state Indiana

The New York Times | October 19, 2018

Georgia Voting Begins Amid Accusations of Voter Suppression

IndyStar | October 19, 2018

Butler basketball to get revamped practice facility at Hinkle Fieldhouse

WISH TV | October 8, 2018

What to watch for during first debate in Indiana's US Senate race

Des Moines Register | October 3, 2018

Democrats, tired of GOP control, think they can flip the Iowa House

IndyStar | September 28, 2018

Hear Hannah Storm and Andrea Kremer call the Colts-Patriots game—if you can find it

USNews | September 25, 2018

Why 4 Students, Graduates Chose Their Colleges

Fox 59 | September 14, 2018

Butler students to work on FIFA Women's World Cup as part of inaugural Fox Sports U partnership

WISH TV | September 13, 2018

Butler University opens new dorm

US News | September 13, 2018

Identify Success Programs at Your Top-Choice College

IndyStar | September 11, 2018

Queer Eye' culture expert Karamo Brown will kick off Butler University lecture series

IndyStar | September 9, 2018

Butler named 'Best of Midwest,' as Indiana Schools feature prominently in rankings

Fox 59 | September 9, 2018

IN Focus: New season, new controversy in NFL

Fox 59 | September 4, 2018

Backlash over new Nike campaign featuring Colin Kaepernick growing

The Washington Post | August 22, 2018

Planetary party: Catch multiple planets lined up with the moon as summer wanes

The Wall Street Journal | August 15, 2018

New Topic on Campus: Civil Discourse 101

IndyStar | August 10, 2018

Saturday and Sunday night will feature meteor sky show

Inside INdiana | August 6, 2018
Demand Prompts Second Lab School's Launch

Washington Post | July 31, 2018
Athletes can easily trick popular concussion test, study finds

Indianapolis Business Journal | July 18, 2018
Kenzie Academy scores $4.2 million, plans to expand school

Indianapolis Business Journal | July 13, 2018
Butler University unleashes building spree, beautification

Bloomberg | July 9, 2018
Under-the-Radar Races Could Upend Power in State Capitols

Inside INdiana | June 20, 2018
High-Tech Institute Partnering With Traditional Educators

USA Today | May 5, 2018
Why Romeo Langford means so much to basketball in Indiana

Fox59 | May 3, 2018
Parents struggle to find balance between screen time at home and school

Lori Desautels tells Fox59 that human interaction is always better than digital when it comes to kids learning.

FiveThirtyEight | April 30, 2018
Should we trust Michael Cohen if he flips on Trump?

FiveThirtyEight cites a study done by psychology instructor Stacy Wetmore found that incentivized testimony makes mock jurors more likely to convict, even when they were explicitly told by an expert witness that such testimony is unreliable.

USA Today | April 17, 2018
Anderson Cooper rips Sean Hannity for not revealing legal ties to Trump lawyer
Nancy Whitmore talks to USA Today about the ethics behind Sean Hannity not disclosing his ties to Michael Cohen.

VICE | February 18, 2018
I Used a 'Human Uber' Surrogate to Do My Job for Me
James McGrath talks to Vice about the ethics behind AI. He sees no ethical dilemma when it comes to the use of a Human Uber, provided you pay fairly for their time.

USA Today | February 11, 2018
OxyContin maker says no more promoting opioids
Kevin Tuohy tells USA Today that discontinuing the sales information pipeline to prescribers will most likely not affect the prescribing of these drugs.

The Wall Street Journal | February 11, 2018
Who's at the Door? College officials delivering your acceptance with a dog
The Wall Street Journal reports on Butler's Butler Bound campaign, which aims to visit as many prospective students as possible and deliver their acceptance news in person, with Trip in toe.

The New York Times | February 9, 2018
Butler undergrads write coverage for dogs and pianos
A story in The New York Times reports on Butler's student-run insurance company and how it not only gives students real world experience, but also is working to address the national insurance shortage.

WPSU | January 29, 2018
Pennsylvania Patients Ready For Medical Marijuana
Jake Peters tells NPR that medical marijuana may make patients feel better in the short-term, but can make disorders, like anxiety and depression worse in the long run.

The New York Times | December 29, 2017
Looking at Blue-Collar Factory Jobs in the Rearview Mirror 
President Jim Dank talks to The New York Times about what the role of higher education institutions is when it comes to globalization and the job market.

USA Today | December 21, 2017
Coin tosses, picking names out of a hat? Yep, that's how some races are decided
USA Today talks to Greg Shufeldt about quirky election law when it comes to ties and the fact that it will likely never change.

USA Today | December 10, 2017
Freedom still elusive for much of the world
An article in USA Today about International Human Rights Day quotes Fait Muedini, who says the U.S. still has a lot of work to do in this area.

Eric Stark

Prestigious Fulbright Grant Awarded to Choral Director Eric Stark

BY Marc Allan MFA `18

PUBLISHED ON Apr 04 2019

When he was working on his doctorate in choral conducting, Eric Stark would come home to Indianapolis from Bloomington, have dinner, then drive to Butler University and sneak into one of the practice rooms in Lilly Hall to do his homework because he needed access to a piano.

"I would always think: If I could only get a job at a place like this," he says.

In 1996, he did, and since then his choral activities have taken him to Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, and around the world. The next stop is Brazil, where he will be a Fulbright Scholar conducting and studying in residence during the first half of 2020 at the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul in Porto Alegre, Brazil.

For Stark, Butler's Director of Choral Activities, it's another milestone in a career filled with them.

Over the years, he has conducted in the Oriental Art Center Concert Hall in Shanghai and the Forbidden City Concert Hall in Beijing. He has made conducting appearances in Greece, Italy, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, and Uruguay, and has led choirs on domestic tours in New York City, Boston, Atlanta, Chicago, New Orleans, Orlando, and Tampa.

When Madonna performed Like a Prayer at halftime of Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis, Stark directed a 200-person choir that included 22 members of the Butler Chorale.

"I'm astounded this is my life, this is my career, because you roll the dice on being a musician and you just never know what's going to happen," he says.

Stark plans to teach at Butler through the 2019 fall semester—he's still leading the popular Rejoice! holiday concerts—then leave for Brazil over winter break. The school year in Brazil starts in March, so he and his husband, Adriano Caldeira, who is Brazilian, will travel around the country in January and February to observe some music-making.

Stark will teach at Federal University from March through June. He will be teaching in Portuguese—some of which he already knows from studying the language for a couple of years ("I feel like I could lead a rehearsal right now in Portuguese"), and some of which he's going to learn this summer at the University of Coimbra in Portugal, thanks to a grant from Butler.

In addition to his work at Butler, Stark has been Artistic Director of the Indianapolis Symphonic Choir since 2002.

The Fulbright Program awards approximately 8,000 grants annually. Roughly 1,600 U.S. students, 4,000 foreign students, 1,200 U.S. scholars, and 900 visiting scholars receive awards, in addition to several hundred teachers and professionals.

Stark discovered his love for music growing up in Columbus, Indiana, where he was inspired by the music at First Presbyterian Church. He sang in church choirs for 12 years and took piano and organ lessons from the choir director, Ray Hass.

The church, he says, was his musical awakening.

"He was a great musician and a great organist, and I can remember even as a 7 or 8 year old how much I enjoyed hearing him play the organ," he says. "That tickled something in my head I had never been aware of before. From time to time, I take the Butler Chorale down there and we sing concerts at that church, which is always fun."

Stark earned his bachelor’s from Wabash College, and both his master’s and doctorate in choral conducting from Indiana University.

When a job opened at Butler, Henry Leck, Butler's longtime Director of Choral Activities, got Stark in to see then-Dean Michael Sells, who hired Stark on a one-year, part-time contract. That turned into a one-year appointment, and then a full-time hiring. In the interim, Stark also taught at Earlham College in Richmond, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, and Christian Theological Seminary.

In 2014, he succeeded Leck as Butler's Director of Choral Activities.

“It’s no surprise to any of us in the Jordan College of the Arts that the significance of Eric’s work as a choral conductor and pedagogue has been recognized on an international level," says Lisa Brooks, Dean of Butler's Jordan College of the Arts. "The connections he will make while in South America will be invaluable to our students, and to the greater Indianapolis community.”

Stark says he's hopeful that his time in Brazil will lead to interesting partnerships and projects.Indianapolis has a sister city relationship with Campinas, Brazil, just outside Sao Paulo, and there is "a lot of multinational cross pollination between businesses here and there."

"There's positives on all sides of the equation, and that's what's so exciting for me about this—that possibility of sharing," he says. "Maybe I'll meet some undergraduate students in Brazil who study with me and might want to come to Butler for graduate studies. That's happened in the past. I'm certain that folks down there would love to do a concert date together with the Butler Chorale or the Symphonic Choir or both down the road. That's pretty exciting to think about."

Eric Stark

Prestigious Fulbright Grant Awarded to Choral Director Eric Stark

Butler's Director of Choral Activities will travel in early 2020 to Brazil as a Fulbright Scholar. 

Apr 04 2019 Read more
Hurricane Irma Destruction

Hurricane Irma, Up Close and Personal

BY Hannah Hartzell ’17

PUBLISHED ON Sep 18 2017

September 6 was supposed to be the first day of school in the U.S Virgin Islands. Teachers like Vanessa Mackenzie were supposed to start lessons.

Then Hurricane Irma struck. You can’t hold class when a Category 5 hurricane is barreling through the Caribbean.

Mackenzie, who graduated from Butler in 2015, had recently moved to the Caribbean and was slated to begin her first year of teaching on the island of St. Thomas. When we spoke the week after the hurricane, she was just hoping her students were safe and had a place to sleep.

“Half of my students live on St. John and the other half live in the part of the island that was completely devastated,” Mackenzie said. “I don’t know what kind of devastation they are going home to, or not going home to.”

It’s not only homes that are destroyed. Mackenzie said power lines are strewn across the streets. Cars have no windows. Trees are stripped bare.

With the island in disarray, citizens are on a curfew. They are only allowed outside between noon and 6:00 PM. During those hours, Mackenzie said everyone wants three things: gas, ice, and water.

“It’s unbelievable how important those things have become,” said Mackenzie, who stayed in a hotel on the south portion of the island during the hurricane—and returned to find her house still standing. “You need gas for your car and your generator, and water is essential on a Caribbean island.”

Citizens are unsure when the next shipment of supplies will come, so they are relying on the generators for power. “We need electricians, contractors, and construction workers,” Mackenzie said. “We need national help.”

For now, Mackenzie is running her generator for a few hours a day, just enough to keep food cold.

She’s also utilizing a Facebook group where people are sharing information about where they’ve found provisions. “That’s how I’m finding out where ice is available,” she said. “That’s how we’re spreading information.”

Those that don’t have internet are relying on word of mouth and the help of neighbors.

“Every time you approach someone in the street, they ask how you are and how your family is,” Mackenzie said. “There have been a lot of people helping and that’s the coolest part.”

The islanders have been told it will take six to 12 months to restore power. There’s no word on when the students will start school again.

“Private schools are getting back in class sporadically,” Mackenzie said. “But I work for a public-school system and I lost all the windows in my classroom. The wall is concave.”

One of the school buildings that is intact is being used by the Red Cross for disaster relief.

Mackenzie though, hopes classes can resume quickly.

“Coming back to school will be the only sense of normal stability for these kids. There’s no routine right now.”

The children are learning one lesson you can’t learn in a classroom though: resiliency.

“We’re going to rebuild,” said Mackenzie. “We’re going to be OK.”

Hurricane Irma Destruction

Hurricane Irma, Up Close and Personal

Vanessa Mackenzie ’15, who is teaching on the U.S. Virgin Islands, hopes to get back to her classroom soon.

Sep 18 2017 Read more
Synovia presents BBCG with check.

Media Advisory: Butler Business Consulting Group, Synovia Partnership Pays Off


PUBLISHED ON Jun 07 2019

The Butler Business Consulting Group (BBCG) does more than offer consulting services to companies. They also invest in certain companies, and that is exactly what they did in 2012 when they heard about Synovia Solutions.

Now, seven years later, that investment is paying off. The BBCG will receive a return on their investment in Synovia, a leading provider of fleet tracking solutions for commercial and government markets, as a result of the recent sale of Synovia.

The BBCG has worked with Synovia as a consultant for several years, but was also an early investment partner and shareholder of the company. In April, Synovia was acquired by CalAmp, a technology solutions company based in California. Butler will receive nearly $800,000 as a result of their investment.

Synovia delivers solutions for cities, counties, as well as public and private education transportation providers. The company won an Innovation Award in the Mobile Computing category at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show for their Here Comes The Bus mobile app.

Trent Ritzenthaler, the Executive Director of the BBCG, says Butler invested in Synovia because of the growth potential the company showed, as well as the innovative approach of the company. Students did in-depth research, and the BBCG worked closely with Synovia before making an investment, he says.

The BBCG, which operates inside the Lacy School of Business, is a full service, professionally led management consulting firm that was formed in 2005.

What: Synovia to present Butler Business Consulting Group with a check for nearly $800,000

When: Monday, June 10th at 3:00 PM

Where: Butler University, Robertson Hall, Johnson Room

Who: Synovia CEO Jon King and Indiana Business Advisors Senior Partner Larry Metzing will present Butler representatives with a large check

Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications


Synovia presents BBCG with check.

Media Advisory: Butler Business Consulting Group, Synovia Partnership Pays Off

The BBCG will receive a return on their investment in Synovia.

Jun 07 2019 Read more

#FTK: Butler University Dance Marathon

By Malachi White '20

BUDM#FTK, For The Kids, is a popular hashtag that is often taken out of context and used in a jokingly ironic way. However, at Butler #FTK is taken very seriously. We do care about the people we are serving in our community. One of the ways we show this is by hosting our annual Butler University Dance Marathon.

Dance Marathon is a multi-hour, multi-faceted event that blends dancing, games, crafts, food, and fun into one philanthropic experience. Students are on their feet the entire duration of the marathon as they stand for the kids at Riley. Funds for Dance Marathons are raised in a variety of ways. The main way funds are raised for Dance Marathons is through personal donations from friends, family, and the community either online or offline.

My friend Phil Faso, a sophomore at Butler, says he thoroughly enjoyed participating for his first time this year. “It personally impacted my life because I’ve done similar things before but not to such a great extent and it was very heartwarming.” Phil said. “It’s for an amazing cause and everyone should be aware of what we can do to help other people in need.”

Butler University Dance Marathon, or BUDM, is sponsored by Butler’s SGA. Their mission statement is “to engage the students of Butler University in striving to improve the quality of life for the children and families of Riley Hospital for Children.” This student-led organization works throughout the school year and summer to raise money to support cancer research performed at the hospital. Our money also helps the hospital continue its tradition of treating all patients, regardless of financial concerns.

Holding this organization close to her heart and platform, Annie Foster is a junior chemistry and Spanish double major, and has worked with BUDM since her first year on campus. “As soon as I joined, I knew this organization was about something bigger than I could ever imagine,” Annie said. “Supporting this organization means joining a movement to give hope back to the kids.” She started as a morale committee member during her first year. Her sophomore and junior years she worked on the executive board as Director of Fundraising. She will close her time at Butler as the Vice President of Finance. All students have the opportunity to be on the executive board by attending call out meetings, being actively annually, and showing commitment to the cause.

“From the start I knew I wanted to join the executive board and make a difference in this organization. BUDM has given my college experience meaning,” Annie said. “Being on a college campus comes with feeling of being in a bubble, secluded from the world around you. Getting involved in BUDM brings you out of that bubble and into the real world. It provides a new perspective, it teaches you about the power of hope, and it allows you to become apart of something larger than yourself.”BUDM

Inspired by the ability to make a change, Taylor Murray is a senior pharmacy major and served on the executive board of BUDM this past year. He realized that his impact on a family in need superseded monetary support for the cause. “I saw the joy and hope, especially, that support and simply dancing can bring to a child, or families face regardless of the amount of money raised that year,” Taylor said. “That was something that truly made me want to continue my involvement with the organization and the cause as a whole.”

As co-director of the morale committee Taylor says that “this committee meshed my love for dancing, with that of wanting to bring happiness and energy to those who may need it most.”

“Prospective students may not have had a Dance Marathon at their high school, and/or did not even know it was happening/what it is when they step foot onto Butler’s Campus,” Taylor said.  “From the outside, it may look like another organization at block party, but once you step out and begin to talk to those who have experienced it or been involved, one can realize it is more than an organization, it is a family.”

This year BUDM raised $301,576 for Riley Children’s Hospital and Butler celebrates being the second largest fundraising school in undergraduate schools with less than 12,000 students. Taylor tells his story and experience with BUDM by sharing how he has grown since his first year at Butler. He hopes that after he graduates he will be able to come back to people who have found their passions and act upon them to make their own Butler experiences special.

“From my experiences with BUDM, I have come to realize that I can be a leader, but a leader that doesn’t necessarily have to be the loudest or most successful in the room, but a leader who can lead by example and as one with the others,” Taylor said. “My advice to prospective students is if you do not know what you what in life, finding and driving toward your passion(s) will open up new avenues and opportunities you never would have thought existed.”

Student LifeCampusCommunity

#FTK: Butler University Dance Marathon

#FTK, For The Kids, is a popular hashtag that is often taken out of context and used in a jokingly ironic way. However, at Butler #FTK is taken very seriously. 


She Couldn't Find The Book She Needed, So She Wrote Her Own


PUBLISHED ON Oct 09 2017

Ann Bilodeau wanted a book to explain to her then-5-year-old daughter why she didn’t believe in God, but such a book didn’t exist.

So Bilodeau wrote her own.

What Do You Believe, Mama? (Mascot Books), an illustrated children’s book, features a mother teaching her daughter lessons such as “Look for things that are true. Be open to ideas. Listen to your heart” and “You don’t have to believe in God to be good.”

“My daughter started asking questions,” said Bilodeau, a Speech-Language Pathologist and Director of Butler University’s Speech and Language Clinic. “All the kids around her asked her why she did not believe in God, and she would come home crying because they said she was going to hell. We have always been respectful of others and I wanted a book to help me share that message with her.”

Bilodeau, a secular humanist, said that growing up, she attended a Methodist church—mainly on the holidays and special occasions. She never felt connected to a higher being, but she appreciated the moral lessons found in various religious ideologies, particularly the Golden Rule.

That is the advice she imparts in the book.

“I believe in caring for people with RESPECT, KINDNESS, ACCEPTANCE, FAIRNESS, and LOVE,” she writes. “I believe in knowing right from wrong and making good choices.”

“I wanted to find ways to teach her these important lessons—but from a secular perspective,” Bilodeau said.

The book is illustrated by Stanley Burford, Bilodeau’s aunt and a Herron School of Art professor emeritus.

“No children’s book is any good without wonderful illustrations, and this is where my aunt comes in,” Bilodeau said. “She completed these when she was 80 (she’s now 82).  She is an amazing woman and partnering with her on this project means the world to me.”

What Do You Believe, Mama? is available through, Barnes & Noble, and Books-a-Million.

“If we sell some and get the book—and the message—out there, I will be over the moon,” Bilodeau said.

Media contact:
Marc Allan

Sonia Nazario

Pulitzer Prize Winner Sonia Nazario Speaks to Butler Incoming Students

BY Marc Allan

PUBLISHED ON Aug 21 2018

Sonia Nazario has been writing about immigration for more than 30 years, and the two-time Pulitzer Prize winner told Butler University's incoming students on Academic Day, Monday, August 20, that she has a better approach to fix a broken system. Nazario's book Enrique's Journey was given to more than 1,300 incoming students as this year's common read. 

As she addressed students, she stated border enforcement, guest-worker programs, and pathways to citizenship have all failed. What the United States needs to do, she said, is:

  • Increase foreign aid to Central America to address the root causes of violence. In Honduras, she said, we are spending $100 million a year on violence-prevention programs. The money funds outreach centers that identify the most at-risk children and provides them with outreach centers, family counseling and other programs to keep them safe. The most violent neighborhood in that country saw a 77 percent drop in kids engaging in crime or abusing drugs and alcohol. Homicides are now being investigated there, and the number has decreased 62 percent. "I think this is a brilliant investment on our part," she said during her talk at Clowes Memorial Hall. "Spend millions there rather than having to spend billions on these kids once they arrive at our border."
  • Provide a safe haven for people who are arriving at our border and are fleeing danger. Instead of cutting the number of refugees we let in to 45,000 a year, we need to increase the number. If Germany can admit 1 million people, we need to show similar compassion.
  • Radically alter our war on drugs. "We spend $1 trillion on the war on drugs," she said. "Every household in this country has spent $10,000 in recent decades … by locking up non-violent offenders. And it hasn't worked." She advised more prevention, drug treatment, and legalizing small quantities of all drugs. "If you don't, you simply move the problem around," with violence shifting from Colombia to Mexico to Central America to, now, the Caribbean, she said.

Nazario, whose book recounts the harrowing story of a Honduran boy looking for his mother, 11 years after she is forced to leave her starving family to find work in the United States, said the United States needs to uphold its core values.

Luke Haas with Nazario"During World War II, we turned away a ship with 900 Jews aboard," she said. "We wouldn't let them dock in our shores. Hundreds of those Jews were murdered in the Holocaust when they were sent back. You've all probably read The Diary of Anne Frank. Well, we rejected Anne Frank's family in 1941. And there was a moral reckoning in this country after World War II. We said never again. We were the leaders in providing the refugee movement around the world. Yet now, we are doing something that is all too similar."

She asked the students to get involved in some way and help end the immigration crisis.

"You can do anything that you set your minds to," she said. "And I think that you—unlike my generation, which has made a mess of this issue—you can actually provide real solutions that are humane and that actually work to slow the flow of people coming to this country illegally."

Nazario's visit to Butler was part of the Welcome Week tradition of inviting an author to campus to discuss a book that the new class has read. Jennifer Griggs, Academic Orientation Programs Manager, said the program "is really about bringing an intellectual experience into an overall orientation program and making that leap to academic life in the classroom."

After Nazario's talk, the students broke into groups with faculty members to discuss what she has said. The purpose of that, Griggs said, is to simulate course discussions and get students comfortable speaking and sharing and talking in the classroom when classes get started on Wednesday.

Luke Haas, a first-year student from Bath, Indiana, said he was glad to have a common read—and the chance to interact with Nazario.

"It definitely broadened my horizons," he said. "I'm more conservative, but I understand problems like this and how we need to fix them. This is a problem everyone is dealing with. She essentially put it out and there and said this is what we have wrong and there are things we need to fix. She does the research and understands that there are multiple places to blame—Republicans, Democrats, people in their own countries. She knows that certain things don't work because she has the statistics and the personal interaction to know."


Media Contact:
Marc Allan

Sonia Nazario

Pulitzer Prize Winner Sonia Nazario Speaks to Butler Incoming Students

 Enrique's Journey was give to 1,300 students as part of this year's common read. 

Aug 21 2018 Read more
President Danko

Butler University Board of Trustees Extends Contract of President James M. Danko


PUBLISHED ON Oct 11 2019

The Butler University Board of Trustees unanimously voted to extend the contract of President James M. Danko through August 2024. The extension was announced to the University community today by Board Chair Jatinder-Bir “Jay” Sandhu ’87.

“Jim Danko exemplifies the kind of leadership that makes our University so special, with a style we have all become familiar with: extremely high expectations of himself and others, nonstop forward momentum, and the empowerment of others to develop new ideas and run with them,” Sandhu says. “It has been rewarding for the entire community to be part of the progress that Butler has made with Jim at the helm.”

Since his inauguration in 2011, Danko has strengthened the University’s academic and administrative leadership team, created incentives to encourage a culture of innovation, advanced diversity, equity, and inclusivity on Butler’s campus, improved and expanded the campus and its learning, residential, athletic, and performance spaces, and significantly increased the level of financial aid Butler provides to students and their families.

Under Danko’s leadership, Butler has seen the most robust fundraising years in its history, established new degree programs, majors, and minors, joined the BIG EAST Athletic Conference, and consistently climbed in national rankings—including being recognized as the No. 1 Regional University in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report for the past two years.

On October 5, Danko announced the launch of Butler Beyond, the University’s new strategic direction and $250 million comprehensive fundraising campaign. Combining tradition with innovation, the new strategic direction will build upon Butler’s strengths in delivering an exceptional undergraduate education, while offering opportunities for lifelong learning and new educational pathways that are more flexible and affordable.

Butler Beyond also focuses on the ways in which the University will more actively strengthen the Hoosier State. For example, the University broke ground on its new Sciences Complex on October 3.

“This resource will not only directly benefit Butler students and community members,” Danko says. “It will play a key role in supporting ‘brain gain’ in our region.”

Danko, who earned his degree in Religious Studies from John Carroll University and an MBA from the University of Michigan, applied his entrepreneurial approach to academic leadership roles at institutions including Dartmouth College and Villanova University before his appointment as Butler’s President.

“I am honored to continue to lead this exceptional University at such a pivotal moment in our history, and I look forward to the work ahead as we pursue our bold vision for Butler’s future.”

President Danko and his wife, Bethanie, along with their dog, Daisy, live on Butler’s campus and welcome all members of the University community to their home. He also hosts office hours for students and attends campus events across academic disciplines, the arts, athletics, student life, and service.

“Jim Danko continues to be the right leader at the right time for Butler University,” Sandhu says. “I feel great optimism for the future and all that the Butler community is capable of achieving with the benefit of Jim’s guidance and expertise.”


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications

President Danko

Butler University Board of Trustees Extends Contract of President James M. Danko

President James M. Danko's contract has been extended through August 2024.

Oct 11 2019 Read more

In State of The University, Danko Asks: How Can We Be Better?


PUBLISHED ON Oct 20 2017

In his seventh State of the University message, Butler President James M. Danko on Friday, October 20, said he is pleased with the University’s growth and achievement, and he challenged the community to ask “How can we as a university be better?” and “What can I do to help make us better?”

“As we move forward this year, I would like to challenge everyone in this room to join me in practicing more self-reflection,” Danko said in his speech at the Schrott Center for the Arts.  “Let’s ask ourselves hard questions and honestly assess the ways in which we can seek improvement every day—for ourselves, for our teams, and for Butler.”

Overall, Danko said, Butler has made great strides, from the classroom (new programs that include the first student-run insurance company in the nation and a collaboration to record and produce musicians participating in the Indy Jazz Festival) to the city (the University contributed more than 77,000 volunteer hours to the Indianapolis community) to Admissions (applications are currently up over 8 percent compared with this time last year) to Athletics (Men’s Soccer and Tennis winning BIG EAST championships and David Goldsmith being named the BIG EAST Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year).

He noted new construction projects and campus additions, including:

  • Irvington House, the 647-bed residence hall being built on the site of former Schwitzer Hall, which opens in fall 2018.
  • The Lacy School of Business building currently under construction and slated to open in fall 2019.
  • Major upcoming renovation of the science facilities for the first time in more than 40 years. At its most recent meeting, the Butler Board of Trustees approved plans for the construction of a new addition that will connect Gallahue Hall and the Holcomb Building, as well as the renovation of the existing buildings.
  • Upcoming finalization of a campus-sharing agreement with Christian Theological Seminary (CTS). In 2018, the College of Education is expected to move to CTS, a spacious location that will better suit its learning objectives.

Danko said the University faces challenges, including the diminishing number of college-age students and the intense competition for good students, “especially in the State of Indiana, where the public universities are quite good,” and from “many private schools in the state that are discounting tuition significantly to fill their classrooms.”

Danko praised the Board of Trustees for holding the 2018–2019 tuition increase to 3.25 percent, the lowest increase in at least the past 11 years, while boosting the financial aid allocation to $68 million.

“I can assure you that we will continue to grow our financial aid in order to help many, many future students to afford a Butler education,” he said. “We remain more committed than ever to providing an exceptional academic experience, one that inspires achievement, growth, and a love of learning in our students.”

Media contact:
Marc Allan


In State of The University, Danko Asks: How Can We Be Better?

In his seventh State of the University message, Butler President James M. Danko on Friday, October 20, said he is pleased with the University’s growth and achievement, and he challenged the community to ask “How can we as a university be better?” and “What can I do to help make us better?”

Oct 20 2017 Read more
A scene from a Butler Improv practice
CampusStudent Life

Butler Improv Troupe Specializes in Unscripted Laughs

BY Tim Brouk

PUBLISHED ON Sep 26 2019

Sometimes there’s a payoff to not thinking.

For members of the Butler University Improv Troupe, not thinking tends to get the biggest laughs. The student organization—inspired by Whose Line Is It Anyway?, The Second City, and Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre—specializes in bringing the funny through off-the-cuff jokes in scenes and games on stage. The premises are fueled by audience suggestion.

“To me, at least, improv is not thinking too hard about it,” says Kitty Compton, a junior Theatre major. “If you think too hard, it won’t be as good. Every improv teacher ever will tell you, ‘Get out of your head. Don’t think about it too hard. Just say what comes to your mind.’ The worst thing you can do is try to be funny.”

Weekly practices help students relieve stress through creative performing. Formed in 2017, the all-female group of about 10, hosts shows on-campus at the end of every semester.

Kitty Compton gets laughs at improv practice.
Kitty Compton, second from left, brings the funny at Butler Improv practice.

Already, the improvisers have benefited from the chance to see touring and local acts that visit Butler stages. Performers from ComedySportz Indianapolis, Indianapolis’ only professional improv comedy group, offered expertise as guest mentors at past meetings. Members attended the August taping of the Hello from the Magic Tavern improv podcast at the Schrott Center for the Arts, and Clowes Memorial Hall will host a live performance of Mystery Science Theater 3000 with comedy actor Joel Hodgson, who made a living from using improv when riffing on bad movies.

Successful improvisations do require some thinking, of course. It just has to be lightning quick. Not all of the jokes land, but members provide one another with helpful feedback. Inspired by Tina Fey’s improv insights within her book Bossypants, the troupe’s first rule is to agree. Their “Yes and … ” mantra creates wide-open scenes and fewer trainwrecks on stage.

The experience of thinking on the fly has helped with the students’ academics. Kait Wilbur, a senior studying Strategic Communication and the troupe’s co-leader, says even bad ideas can inspire her academic work. Her years of improvisation have assisted in writing ad copy at her internship at Young and Laramore, a downtown Indianapolis advertising agency. The exploration has enhanced her creativity. Ideas flow easier. 

“This has been helpful in the generative process,” Wilbur says. “I’m not ditching any ideas because they’re dumb, but just letting them exist. You do that in improv because you have to think really fast.”

Funny women

Since its formation, the troupe has had an all-female cast, but not on purpose. Male improvisers are always welcome.

Wilbur believes the strong female cast members of Saturday Night Live and other comedy shows have inspired young women to take the stage, from Butler and beyond.

“I idolized Tina Fey,” Wilbur says. “I did a deep dive into comedy in junior high, and improv was a part of that. I saw it as a good way in.”

Compton is the only theater major in the troupe. Among the founding members, the Evansville, Indiana, native has honed her improv skills over the years. She considers improv an essential weapon in her performance arsenal.

“I think every actor needs to be able to improvise,” Compton says. “You need to at least be able to recover if something bad happens, and if you’re able to improvise, you can add a lot of personality to a role.”

Mae-Mae Han is a first-year Pre-Pharmacy student. Since middle school, she has successfully balanced theater, comedy, music, and STEM studies, and Han will continue to do so at Butler.

Mae-Mae Han leads a scene at improv practice.
First-year Pre-Pharmacy student Mae-Mae Han, center, leads a scene.

“When it comes to comedy and acting, it’s very energizing for me,” she says. “At the end of the day, being able to have fun, laugh, and bounce off of other people’s energies is super beneficial for my mental health.”

‘Bologna danger’

Troupe co-leader and senior Composition major Jessie Lause joyfully orchestrated a recent Monday night group meeting in Jordan Hall. During the “Conducted Story” game, Lause pointed to a performer to start telling a story using the phrase “bologna danger” for inspiration. After a few lines, Lause would point to another troupe member to continue the story, which included a man named Jack Danger and his crimes involving processed meats. Aliens were somehow in the mix, too.

“It helps me let loose,” says Lause, who is also studying Arts Administration. “I get really caught up in the sophistication level of my collegiate work. This is a way that I can step out of that.”

Another game saw the women giving their best impressions of The B-52’s Fred Schneider while singing about mowing the lawn and going grocery shopping.

Wilbur says she’s proud to have performed unscripted in front of friends and strangers, just like her heroes Fey, Amy Poehler, Rachel Dratch, and Catherine O’Hara did years ago.

“This is something that bonds me to the people I look up to,” Wilbur says. “We’re all participating in a similar tradition. It makes me feel self-actualized, in a sense. Sometimes it can be hard to have goals that you aspire to accomplish. Then you actually accomplish them. I’m engaging with that part of myself.”

And that is no bologna.


Great moments in improv, according to

These iconic lines and actions are entrenched in pop culture, thanks to improvisation. 

  • Willy Wonka’s entrance, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory — Gene Wilder walks like an old man before tumbling into an acrobatic somersault. Wilder said the stunt was meant to set up the mysterious nature of the character. Is the candy magnate lying or telling the truth throughout the film?
  • Jewelry box close, Pretty Woman — Richard Gere’s snap of the necklace box wasn’t planned, which drew the famous laugh from Julia Roberts.
  • “You’re gonna need a bigger boat,” Jaws — Roy Scheider’s cryptic line was not in the script.
  • “I’m walking here!”, Midnight Cowboy — Dustin Hoffman’s reaction was in real New York City traffic. The cab got in the way of the shot and Hoffman delivered the line your dad always says when crossing a busy street.
  • “You talking to me?”, Taxi Driver — Robert DeNiro’s intense scene was given with just the note “speaks to himself in the mirror.”
  • “Here’s Johnny!”, The Shining — Jack Nicholson tossed in the line, which made it perhaps more famous than Ed McMahon’s call for the The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson at the time.
  • “Tears in the rain” scene, Blade Runner — Rutger Hauer’s largely improvised delivery defined the late actor’s career.


Media Contact:
Tim Brouk
Senior News Content Manager
765-977-3931 (cell)

A scene from a Butler Improv practice
CampusStudent Life

Butler Improv Troupe Specializes in Unscripted Laughs

At meetings and shows, the student organization’s all-female cast thrives in creating comedy instantaneously.

Sep 26 2019 Read more

Making a Career of Building Diversity

by Marc D. Allan MFA '18

In her first three years at Butler University, Valerie Davidson created the Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series, GospelFest, and the annual Volunteer-Study Tour Service-Learning Experience, which lets students do volunteer work and tour a major U.S. city.

She accomplished all of this while only working  part-time at Butler.

After she became full time in 1989, Davidson helped more than triple the number of African-American students on campus and helped the Black Student Union become a significant presence among student groups.

She had a hand in developing both the Dr. John Morton-Finney Scholarship Program—named for the alumnus who earned 13 academic degrees, served as a Buffalo Soldier in the Spanish-American War, and was a practicing attorney at the time of his death at age 108—and the Multicultural Resource Center, the forerunner to the Efroymson Diversity Center, which opened in 2006 and is home to seven diversity student organizations.

She assisted in creation of the Voices of Deliverance Gospel Choir, expanded the diversity lecture series to partner with the Office of the Mayor of Indianapolis (as well as the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation and several prominent companies), and created or shepherded a long list of programs that made Butler a more welcoming environment for multicultural students.

But now, Davidson, Butler’s Director of Diversity Programs and Director of the Efroymson Diversity Center, is retiring. After 32 years at Butler, her last day is January 2.

"I didn't plan to be here 32 years," she said. "I just looked up and I'd been here 20 years, and then a few more years went by and in October of 2018 it was 32 years. Having been at the forefront of building diversity on campus, I can see how much we've progressed as an institution. And I'm proud of that. I can also see areas in which we continue to need to improve. Now it's time for somebody else to take things to the next level."


Davidson grew up a few miles from Butler, the daughter of a distinguished musician/music educator father (Larry Liggett, who recorded for the Chess Records label, and led the Indianapolis Public Schools Music Department) and a mother, Earline, who was his business manager and a licensed booking agent. Jazz greats Duke Ellington, Lionel Hampton, and Clark Terry were among the visitors to their home when she was a young girl.

She finished her undergraduate degree at IUPUI, where she studied to be a high school social studies teacher, and did her master's in student affairs administration at IU-Bloomington.

After graduation, she accepted a paid internship that turned into a full-time job with the Indiana House Democratic Caucus. She'd been there eight months when a classified ad in the Sunday Indianapolis Star caught her eye: Butler University was looking for a part-time coordinator of minority student affairs. The University wanted someone to provide support services for the minority student population and serve as advisor for the fledgling Black Student Union. All in 15-20 hours a week.

Davidson got the job—and kept her full-time gig with the legislature. She'd drive from the Statehouse downtown to Butler Monday through Friday at lunchtime and also work at night.

One of the first things she did was reach out to the minority student population, predominantly African-American students, and ask for a meeting.

"I needed to get to know them and figure out what they wanted and needed to see happen," she said. "I wanted to know what their experience had been and what I could do to support them, to create an environment in which they felt at home, in which they felt they could be successful, in which they felt valued and embraced, and see what they wanted to see happen."

One thing almost all of them wanted was a cultural center. That would take until 2006, when Lori Efroymson-Aguilera and the Efroymson Fund of the Central Indiana Community Foundation gave Butler $1 million to create the Efroymson Diversity Center.

In the meantime, Davidson kept building up the diversity lecture series—bringing ex-Presidents (Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush), secretaries of state (Colin Powell, Madeleine Albright) and other dignitaries to campus—and GospelFest, which grew from the Johnson Room (capacity 100) to Clowes Memorial Hall (2,100). The Volunteer-Study Tour Service-Learning Experience, which started as a one-day trip to Chicago with a small group, developed into an annual long-weekend-before-Thanksgiving trip to New Orleans.

Forty-six students took part this year.


What she'll miss most are the students.

"Students are like her second family," said Bobbie Gibson, who worked with Davidson from 2001–2018. "She came to work every day with a glad heart, and she always found the strength to come through for them."

Whether celebrating their achievements—like getting to sing backup for Stevie Wonder at Banker's Life Fieldhouse—or getting them through a rough patch, "Ms. Valerie," as she is known, is there.

"I've always tried to be as supportive as possible of students and their individual needs," she said, beginning to tell the story of a student who attempted suicide. After several days in the hospital, the girl was released and temporarily dismissed from the University. As the girl packed up her belongings to make the drive home, Davidson packed up her son, Jason, then in middle school, and they followed the girl back to the Chicago area to make sure she got home safely. (The story ends happily: The girl came back to Butler, graduated, and is healthy and successful.)

Davidson said her greatest achievement was helping change the culture for diverse students on campus.

"Most of the students on campus were pretty isolated and invisible when I got here," she said. "It was a polarized campus. There wasn't a lot of engagement between the various subpopulations on campus."

She helped the Black Student Union develop a strategic plan. Its numbers started to grow, and the organization developed a presence on campus. In 1992, the BSU won the Lamp of Wisdom Award for Most Outstanding Student Organization on campus for the first of eight consecutive years.

"I can remember watching the vice president of BSU walk up onstage and accept the award," Davidson said. "I had tears in my eyes. To see them go from this struggling, little, isolated organization to emerge as a leading organization on campus was one of the proudest moment that I had."

Khayleia Foy '19, President of the Black Student Union, said that even though Davidson has not officially been the organization's advisor since 2015, she "was a great support system for BSU whenever we needed her."

In addition, Foy said, Davidson's work in planning and running the pre-welcome week program Dawg Days has been invaluable because "without this program and the relationships that I have built over the years because of it, I may not still be a student at Butler."


When Davidson started at Butler full time in 1989, she planned to stay for five years. She'd hoped to accomplish a few things and then go back to government. But by that point, her son, Jason, was ready to go into high school, and he'd grown up around Butler, so she decided to stay.

Then he graduated from Park Tudor in 1997 and was admitted to Butler. She figured she'd stay around till after he graduated, then enter the job market. (Jason Davidson graduated in 2001 and is an instructor in the Lacy School of Business.)

Then Bobby Fong was named President in 2001, and "he came to Butler with a strong commitment to diversity." That fall, she was integral in getting Butler and the Mayor's Office to partner on presenting the diversity lecture series. Coretta Scott King was the first speaker in that partnership.

Then Butler made diversity a funding priority in its capital campaign and the diversity center, "a 20-year dream," became a reality. It also became vital to students—not only for meeting space but because of who ran it.

"The Diversity Center has been like a home for me for the past three and a half years," Foy said, "and it will not be the same without Ms. Valerie there. I will miss the support, advice, sacrifice, and genuine care that Ms. Valerie has shown for anyone (not just students) that has come through the Diversity Center over the years."


Making a Career of Building Diversity

"Having been at the forefront of building diversity on campus, I can see how much we've progressed."

Making a Career of Building Diversity

by Marc D. Allan MFA '18

Butler Year in Review: The News of 2018

Throughout Butler’s 163-year history we have boldly made decisions and pursued priorities that have put us ahead of our time and set us apart from our peers. 2018 was no exception. From the largest incoming class size in our history to a Number One ranking by U.S. News and World Report, from significant undergrad research to innovative academic programs, Butler students, faculty, staff, and community have been recognized for their outstanding academic efforts and their pursuit of excellence. As the year draws to a close, we’ve compiled the top 10 Butler stories by local and national media.


Insurance 101: Butler Undergrads Write Coverage for Dogs and Pianos | The New York Times | February 9, 2108

The New York Times reports on Butler undergrads who operate an insurance company giving them real-world experience and the University coverage for important assets around campus.


Who’s at the Door? College Officials Delivering your Acceptance in Person (Sometimes with a Dog) | The Wall Street Journal | February 11, 2018

The Wall Street Journal shares how Butler Blue III and the University are leading the pack in innovative ways to attract students.


Butler University Unleashes Building Spree, Beautification | Indianapolis Business Journal | July 13, 2018

The IBJ outlines Butler’s ambitious campus transformation, including two new residence halls, the soon-to-debut Lacy School of Business building, and lots of new trees and bike lanes.


Athletes Can Easily Trick Popular Concussion Test, Study Finds | The Washington Post | July 31, 2018

The Washington Post reported on a Butler research study co-authored by Amy Peak, Director of Undergraduate Health Sciences, on how athletes dupe one of the nation’s most common concussion screening tests.


Why You Should Ignore Your Friends’ Fantasy Football Advice | The Wall Street Journal | August 20, 2018

The Wall Street Journal explored Assistant Professor of Creative Media and Entertainment Media Ryan Roger’s research on the benefits of the collective brain in decision making.


Planetary Party: Catch Multiple Planets Lined Up with the Moon as Summer Wanes | The Washington Post | August 22, 2018

Physics and Astronomy Professor, and Director of Holcomb Observatory and Planetarium, Brian Murphy shared his astronomical expertise with The Washington Post as multiple planets aligned for outstanding nighttime viewing late this summer.


Butler Named “Best of the Midwest” as Indiana Schools Feature Prominently in Annual Rankings | Indy Star | September 10, 2018

For the first time ever, Butler University was named #1 Regional University in the Midwest by U.S. News and World Report.


Georgia Voting Begins Amid Accusations of Voter Suppression | The New York Times | October 19, 2018

As the 2018 midterm elections heated up, Political Science assistant professor Greg Shufeldt spoke to The New York Times about electoral integrity and its impact on voting in Georgia.


Doyel: Butler’s Bulldog Mascot Gives Admission News to Kid Who Beat Cancer | Indy Star | October 22, 2018

Indy Star columnist Gregg Doyel followed along as Butler Blue III surprised Tatum Parker with news of her admission to Butler University.


America’s Election Grid Remains a Patchwork of Vulnerabilities | The New York Times | November 17, 2018

Post-election, Political Science assistant professor Greg Shufeldt spoke to The New York Times about his recent study on how distrust in voting laws and processes can limit turnout.


Butler Year in Review: The News of 2018

As the year draws to a close, we’ve compiled the top 10 Butler stories by local and national media.

Building Balanced Bulldogs

by Jeff Stanich ’16

At Butler, fostering a student’s health and wellbeing goes way beyond the treadmill or a yoga mat.

Perhaps you’ve seen the BU | BeWell logo, which appears as a rainbow of principal pillars, across campus and online. Each of the eight components—Mind & Body, Career & Life Skills, Meaning & Purpose, Social, Environmental, Service & Community, Intellectual, and Diversity & Inclusion—are what the team behind BU | BeWell believe contribute to the complete and transformative experience that Butler University offers its students.

BU BeWell logoWhat happens outside of the classroom on a college campus is as critical as what happens inside to the future success of a student. Learning to navigate the challenges of adult life in a healthy way is fundamental to a fulfilled life after graduation. The tools and experiences critical to this essential process of “growing up” have always been available on Butler’s campus, but they have been scattered and, at times, perhaps disjointed. This year, with the launch of BU | BeWell, for the first time in the school’s history, all of the student resources available across campus have come together to make it more straightforward for students to make their time outside of the classroom as meaningful as it always has been inside of it.

“It’s a big deal,” says Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Frank E. Ross. “Leading higher education associations NASPA and NIRSA have articulated the importance of wellbeing to student success, and a proactive, campus-wide approach to supporting the whole student. That is what we are doing at Butler with BU | BeWell.”

Ross is saying that not only as a fellow bulldog, but as a national leader in student affairs with more than two decades of experience. According to him, what Butler is doing outside of the classroom will be a leading example in higher education across the country.

Take it from Katie Pfaff, a senior who has been working closely with BU | BeWell’s collaborators. Since she’s only a few months away from graduation, she recognizes how much she could have benefitted had this framework been in place since her first year.

“While I got all the pieces I needed to have a well-rounded experience, I took a much curvier path to get there than what BU | BeWell will help Butler’s students pursue,” Pfaff says. “I know I’m only a short time away from a major transitional period after graduation. BUBeWell’s model is something I can look to while trying to make sure my life stays as balanced as it’s been on campus.”

That’s the key. BU | BeWell will not only help students make their time at Butler more fulfilling, but it will also guide those individuals toward healthy and meaningful lives beyond campus.

BU | BeWell has been a campus-wide, collective effort to organize. Two of its champions—Josh Downing, Director of Recreation & Wellness, and Beth Lohman, Associate Director of Fitness & Wellness—have spent the last few years applying national best practices in order to bring BU | BeWell to life. Now in its first year of rollout, their primary objective is raising awareness of its existence so that students know where many, if not all, of their questions will be answered.

Need help putting a résumé together? BU | BeWell will tell you where to go.

Need a tutor for that major exam coming up? BU | BeWell will help you find one on campus.

In need of a faith-based circle? Wondering when the next keynote speaker is coming? Want to get more involved in student government? BU | BeWell, BU | BeWell, BU | BeWell.

And this is only the beginning. While the framework is in place and the web portal has launched, in year two, software will be rolled out so that students can create a BU | BeWell profile to track their involvement and/or progress with the eight components of the BUBeWell umbrella. Even more, annual surveys will continue to be conducted to see how exactly BU | BeWell is meeting the needs of Butler’s students while also looking for ways to improve.

“That’s why we’re all so excited about this moving forward,” Downing says. “By enhancing what Butler already does so well, the potential for how exactly BU | BeWell will help our students is limitless.”

Student LifeCampus

Building Balanced Bulldogs

BU | BeWell is a campus-wide, collective effort to enhance the student experience outside the classroom.

Building Balanced Bulldogs

by Jeff Stanich ’16

Butler University Expands with Purchase of CTS Campus


PUBLISHED ON Dec 19 2017

Butler University just got a bit larger—40 acres larger.

Butler has completed the purchase of 40 acres of property and buildings from Christian Theological Seminary (CTS), both schools announced on Wednesday, December 20, 2017.

Butler’s College of Education (COE) will move into the main building on the CTS campus beginning with the 2018–2019 academic year. CTS will continue to reside on campus—in a part of the main building, counseling center, and apartments—through a special long-term lease. CTS will also retain ownership of a parcel of land on the far west side of the property on Michigan Road.

A benefit for both

Though Butler and CTS will continue to be independent, both schools say this collaboration is a major benefit.

“This purchase supports the momentum of our current strategy and future vision, providing Butler with new physical space for growth as we seek to further enhance the University’s academic experience,” Butler President James Danko says. “This partnership offers many benefits and creates opportunity to explore how we can best serve the needs of CTS, Butler, and our broader communities.”

Under the agreement, Butler plans to provide both campuses with services, such as grounds maintenance, the cost of which both schools will share.

“Put simply, this is a bold move that enables CTS to be good stewards of our physical and financial resources for the benefit of preparing transformative leaders for the church and community,” CTS Interim President Bill Kincaid says. “This agreement represents an opportunity to ensure the mission of CTS will continue for many generations to come.”

An innovative space

While COE will be the first to occupy the newly acquired space, Butler continues to explore ways to expand and enhance its innovative educational vision both on campus and in the community through the investment in the CTS space. Renovations to the main building on the CTS campus are set to begin after January 1 and will revolve around classrooms and faculty offices, as well as improvements to technology and accessibility.

“We may be the first college physically moving to CTS, but this purchase has the potential to enhance Butler’s position as an innovative leader in all aspects of education,” COE Dean Ena Shelley says. “This space will afford our entire University the chance to further our commitment to transformative student-centered learning.”

Shared history and mission

Butler and CTS have a history.

In 1855, the two institutions were founded as a single entity, North Western Christian University. They separated formally in 1958 when Butler’s religion department split from the University and formed what would become today’s CTS.

Since then, CTS and Butler have remained independent, but they have shared a rich and dynamic history of educating students to prepare them for rewarding and meaningful lives. Along the way, the two schools have collaborated academically, programmatically, and through shared services.


Media contact:
Rachel Stern


Butler University Expands with Purchase of CTS Campus

Butler has completed the purchase of 40 acres of property and buildings from Christian Theological Seminary (CTS), both schools announced on Wednesday, December 20, 2017.

Dec 19 2017 Read more
Arts & CultureCampus

Butler Ballet Spices Up Midwinter Dance Festival With a Tango


PUBLISHED ON Jan 31 2018

Butler Ballet will warm up the cold winter nights with the sizzling modern dance tango Piazzolla Caldera and three world premiere pieces as part of Midwinter Dance Festival, Feb. 14-18 at the Schrott Center for the Arts.

Audiences have the opportunity to see two separate shows, each featuring Piazzolla Caldera, choreographed by the legendary American choreographer Paul Taylor, and three other pieces.

Program A will be presented:

Wednesday, February 14, at 7:00 PM

Friday, February 16, at 7:30 PM

Saturday, February 17, at 2:00 PM

Program B will be presented:

Thursday, February 15, at 7:00 PM

Saturday, February 17, at 7:30 PM

Sunday, February 18, 2:00 PM

Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors 62 and older, and $7 for students and children under 18. They are available at Clowes Memorial Hall during regular box office hours and at the Schrott Center for the Arts beginning two hours before each performance.

Piazzolla Caldera, created in 1997, has been described as "a sensual exposé of tango as reinterpreted and reimagined with modern dance." The piece will be set by Butler Dance Professor Susan McGuire, who was a principal dancer with the Paul Taylor Dance Company from 1977 to 1988 and served as rehearsal director in 1989.

On February 9, the week before the Midwinter performances, the Paul Taylor Dance Company will perform at Clowes Memorial Hall. The company will present a masterclass for Butler Ballet dancers, and two members of the Paul Taylor company—including Heather McGinley '05—will coach the student-dancers.

"The circle has completed itself," Attaway said. "We're all excited about that."

Program A also will feature:

Farewell to the Singing Earth, choreographed by Professor Stephan Laurent and set to the music of Gustav Mahler. "This is a bittersweet moment for us because Stephan is retiring at the end of this year and this will be his last Midwinter with us," Attaway said. "He thought it would be fitting for him to revive a piece he did in 2003 that is a farewell."

Like Water for Dancers, choreographed by Assistant Professor of Dance Ramon Flowers. The piece represents the elements of water, fire, air, and earth. Initially developed for three dancers, it will feature 16 dancers in this new incarnation.

Dawn, choreographed by Professor Marek Cholewa. This world premiere also will feature an original score by percussionist Jordy Long '16.

Program B also will feature:

The grand pas de deux from La Bayadère, set by Assistant Professor of Dance Rosanna Ruffo. "This is a technical tour de force for our dancers," Attaway said. "It's more traditional than other pieces in Midwinter. It's certainly been reworked by Rosanna, but it will be familiar to people."

Stardust, a world premiere by Professor Cynthia Pratt, featuring music by David Bowie. "It's a technical challenge – very aerobic," Attaway said. "It doesn't stop moving."

Flying Wings, by Associate Professor of Dance Derek Reid. "We carry thoughts/burdens that weigh us down and search for opportunities and moments to feel free, to feel happy," Reid said, explaining the dance. "A friend passed a scripture reading on to me one day which sparked my inspiration. Roman 5: 3-4: “We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance and endurance produces character, and character produces hope.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Arts & CultureCampus

Butler Ballet Spices Up Midwinter Dance Festival With a Tango

Performances will take place February 14-18 at the Schrott Center.

Jan 31 2018 Read more

Butler Year in Review: The Stories of 2018

On any given day, throughout campus and beyond, there are hundreds of Butler stories to be told. What we do at Butler University—and how we do it—not only make us better as a university; it, in turn, makes the world better. In March of 2018, we launched Butler Stories, a place to share news, tell tales, and engage more deeply with our community. Over the course of the year we have shared more than 100 stories about the Butler community and its impact.

From breaking news to long-form articles about important research, here’s a list, in no particular order, of our top ten news stories from 2018:


Butler Ranked No. 1 in the Midwest For the First Time by U.S. News & World Report

For the first time in its history, Butler University moved into a tie for the No. 1 Regional University in the Midwest, according to the 2019 U.S. News & World Report Best Colleges Rankings.


As Female Veteran Population Grows, So Do Their Healthcare Needs

The number of female veterans has been on the rise and is projected to continue in that direction. In her research, Assistant Professor Veronica Vernon found the best way to serve the fast-growing population of female veterans – pharmacists.


Butler Launches Online Master’s in Risk and Insurance

Butler University's Lacy School of Business will introduce an online Master of Science in Risk and Insurance (MSRI) program—among the first of its kind in the nation—beginning in January 2019 to help address the gap between the risk and insurance industry’s personnel needs and the limited talent pool that exists in today’s job market.


Kenzie Academy, Butler University Executive Education Partner to Accelerate Tech Careers

Kenzie Academy, an Indianapolis-based education and apprenticeship program that develops modern tech workers, and Butler University announced a strategic partnership to offer a new model of education to the next generation of technology professionals.


Outsmarting the Test: Concussions & ImPACT

According to new research from Butler University Director of Undergraduate Health Science Programs, Amy Peak, and former Butler health science student Courtney Raab, individuals are outsmarting the most popular exam to test for concussions.


Lacy School of Business Named Outstanding On-Campus MBA Program by Princeton Review

The Lacy School of Business has been named one of the 252 outstanding on-campus MBA programs in the Princeton Review's “Best Business Schools for 2019.”


Brooke Barnett Named New Dean of CCOM

Brooke Barnett, a Professor and Associate Provost at Elon University—who earned her master's and doctorate from Indiana University—will be the new Dean of Butler University's College of Communication (CCOM). Barnett will join Butler on June 1, 2019.


Popularity, Success Spark Second IPS/Butler Lab School

A second Lab School, born out of demand, success, and lots of work, is up and running at 54th Street. Lab School 55 welcomed around 300 students in its inaugural year.


Butler Professor Receives NSF Grant to Study Class of Enzymes Linked with Cancer Growth

Associate Professor of Chemistry, Jeremy Johnson, with a $250,000 grant from the National Science Foundation, will continue his research and will integrate the work into undergraduate classroom laboratories.


Butler Continues Trend, Welcomes Record First-Year Class

For the second time in three years, Butler University is set to welcome its largest class ever, as 1,336 first-year students began classes on August 22. Butler has been experiencing an upward trajectory in applicants since 2009.


Butler Year in Review: The Stories of 2018

 From breaking news to long-form articles about important research, here are our top news stories from 2018.

Sciences Groundbreaking
Butler BeyondCampusCommunity

Butler Holds Official Groundbreaking for Historic $100 Million Sciences Renovation and Expansion

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Oct 05 2019

INDIANAPOLIS—Butler University is set to hold the official groundbreaking for a new, state-of-the-art science complex.

The $100 million renovation and expansion is the largest capital project in the University’s history. Consistent with the University’s new strategic direction, which is set to be unveiled at a historic celebration at Clowes Memorial Hall Oct. 5, the new complex will promote learning by doing through new high-tech classrooms, will feature labs that mimic top research companies, and will encourage cross-disciplinary collaboration through work spaces. The facility will reflect the interdisciplinary nature of science, and eliminate labs designed for a single purpose. Classroom spaces will allow faculty to step away from a podium, and move among students in a more hands-on approach to instruction.

Phases I and II of the project are underway, with a predicted 18-month timeline. To date, $29.5 million has been raised for the project. The goal is to raise $42 million of the $100 million total cost through philanthropic support.

Butler Chair of the Board of Trustees Jay Sandhu will preside over an official groundbreaking ceremony on the Gallahue Hall Academic Quad. Here are the details:

Who: President James Danko; Chair of the Board of Trustees Jay Sandhu; Provost Kate Morris; President & CEO of the Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation Claire Fiddian-Green; College of Liberal Arts & Sciences Dean Jay Howard; Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences Sean Berthrong; Sophomore Biochemistry Major Madison Unger

What: Official groundbreaking for the $100 million sciences renovation and expansion project

When: Thursday, October 3 at 4:45 PM

Where: Butler University campus on the Gallahue Hall Academic Quad (please call Rachel Stern at 914-815-5656 if you have any trouble finding the location)

Why: Though work has already started on this project, Butler is holding an official groundbreaking to celebrate this historic renovation and expansion

The project starts with the creation of a connector building—linking Gallahue Hall and the Holcomb Building—that will house classrooms, study areas, and research labs dedicated to Chemistry, Astronomy, Physics, Engineering, and Psychology. Phase I will add nearly 44,000 square feet, as well as a nearly 13,200 square-foot atrium. This additional space will create a science corridor to house all of Butler’s undergraduate science programs in a central complex.

Phase II of the project will include renovating and repurposing the Holcomb Building. Phase III will involve a complete renovation of Gallahue Hall, which currently houses several science departments and has not been renovated since its construction in 1973.

Sean Berthrong, Assistant Professor of Biological Sciences, says the new sciences complex will change the way he teaches. He will be able to do more innovative projects with his students in the classroom because there will no longer be physical barriers separating classrooms and lab spaces. That will enable him to literally bring his research into his classes.

“We will quite literally and metaphorically break down the walls between disciplines, between classwork and research, and between discovery and teaching,” Berthrong says. “It will be amazing to have a building that is as ambitious and as interdisciplinary as our students and faculty.”

Madison Unger, a sophomore Biochemistry major, says everyone at the University will benefit from this project, not just science majors like herself.

“This building will be a place where everyone will come to study, collaborate, hang out, and work together,” says Unger, who plans to go to medical school after graduation. “There is so much excitement around this project because everyone knows it will give students the best chance to flourish.”


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications
914-815-5656 (cell)


Innovations in Teaching and Learning

One of the distinguishing features of a Butler education has always been the meaningful and enduring relationships between our faculty and students. Gifts to this pillar during Butler Beyond will accelerate our commitment to investing in faculty excellence by adding endowed positions, supporting faculty scholarship and research, renovating and expanding state-of-the-art teaching facilities, and more. Learn more, make a gift, and read other stories like this one at

From the President

James Danko

from Spring 2017

When North Western Christian University—later to be renamed Butler University—opened its doors in 1855 with only two professors, natural science was a foundational part of the curriculum. As courses of study evolved in later years, the science track was in high demand among students. And in the mid-1940s, as Eli Lilly and Company was achieving success with the production and distribution of penicillin, Butler took over the Indianapolis College of Pharmacy, becoming one of only two colleges in Indiana to confer pharmacy degrees.

Now, as then, Butler University is dedicated to providing world-class academic programs in pharmacy and in life, physical, and health sciences. Demand among students and employers for these programs, as well as for Butler’s engineering and technology programs, is high, and many—including the Science, Technology, and Environmental Studies program featured in this magazine— prepare students for medical school and other graduate programs. Butler is dedicated to all these programs not only because they are central to its academic mission, but because the University has an important role in supporting economic development in the Hoosier state.

Over the past decade, Butler’s undergraduate enrollment in the sciences within the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has increased by over 56 percent. As applications to the University reached an all-time high last year, 10 percent of those applications were for Biology. Applications to the Computer Science and Software Engineering major have jumped 67 percent over the past two years alone. Because science and technology are integral to economic and social progress locally and worldwide, they are central to Butler’s educational mission. As Butler prepares a diverse, socially responsible generation of students to excel in these fields, I hope you will join me in celebrating the success stories highlighted in this edition of Butler Magazine.


From the President

Butler University is dedicated to providing world-class academic programs in pharmacy and in life, physical, and health sciences.

by James Danko

from Spring 2017

Read more

Top 15 Things To Do in Indy

by Elizabeth Duis ’20

Indianapolis is a bustling city with unforgettable experiences around every corner. As home to the world’s largest children’s museum, 11 professional sports teams, and one of only two racing hubs in the country, Indy has established a name for itself as a vibrant, growing metropolis. We’ve rounded up a list of our Top 15 things to do in Indy this summer and all year ‘round! Whether you’re a sports fanatic, art enthusiast, animal lover, or family-oriented person, the Circle City has got a spot for you!

  1. The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

Let your imagination run wild down the halls of the largest children’s museum in the world. Located just minutes from downtown, The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis features five floors of fun and interactive learning that are thrilling for all ages. The new Sports Legends Experience combines indoor and outdoor exhibits so guests can run, dive, jump, put, and play year round!

  1. Butler Arts Center

Comprising several venues on Butler University’s campus, the Butler Arts Center features both collegiate and professional performances. BAC’s largest venue, Clowes Memorial Hall, hosts Broadway in Indianapolis that brings Broadway-level productions to the Midwest. Also, don’t miss showstopping collegiate performances like Butler Ballet’s The Nutcracker as the next generation of professionals grace the stage.

  1. Indianapolis Zoo

Located downtown in White River State Park, the Indianapolis Zoo is a 64-acre accredited zoo, aquarium, and botanical garden that’s sure to make animal lovers giddy! The zoo is divided by ecological systems, so visitors can take in the sights, sounds, smells, and, of course, animals in every environment. Approximately 250 species can be seen in these numerous biomes, so go pay them a visit!

  1. Indianapolis Public Library

College students and business travelers alike will love the serenity and architectural beauty of the Indianapolis Public Library. Originally constructed in 1917, the library has undergone a recent expansion to create a breathtaking glass and steel atrium, which serves as an impressive event space. The city skyline views offered by the sixth floor spaces are a must-see for any Indy explorer.

  1. Old National Centre

At the heart of downtown sits a nationally-renowned venue that hosts some of the best entertainment in the city. Old National Centre, formerly the Murat Centre, boasts a lineup of Broadway shows, concerts, and more each year. Check out a show and grab dinner or a drink closeby on Mass Ave.

  1. Newfields

The Indianapolis Museum of Art, located on the Newfields campus, is one of the nation’s largest art museums. Art enthusiasts will love the 152 acres of gardens and grounds featuring the museum's permanent collection of many cultures and eras, numbering more than 50,000 works. Even is art isn’t really your thing, Newfields also offers 100 Acres: The Virginia B. Fairbanks Art & Nature Park, one of the United States' foremost museum contemporary sculpture parks, with installations integrated into woodlands, wetlands, lakes, and meadows that are breathtaking no matter your level of interest.

  1. NCAA Hall of Champions

For those who love to follow their legends, the NCAA Hall of Champions boasts two floors of interactive exhibits to engage visitors and create a true-to-life understanding of what it takes to make the grade. The first floor, “Arena,” represents all 24 NCAA sports represented and contains fun features such as a trivia challenge, current team rankings, and video highlights. The second floor, “Play,” is even more interactive as guests can compete virtually and hands-on through sports simulators, a 1930’s retro gymnasium, ski simulator, and more!

  1. Indiana State Museum

Much more than your average museum, the Indiana State Museum is blazing the trail of interactive museums across the country. Exhibits come to life through costumed actors and intriguing presentations. Spanning three floors of permanent and changing galleries, the museum tells the story of the Hoosier state. The museum also houses unique amenities such as an IMAX movie theater, the Indiana Store, The Farmers Market Café, and the L.S. Ayres Tea Room.

  1. Eiteljorg Museum

Prepare to immerse yourself in the beauty of another culture. Named one of the world's finest Native American and Western Art collections by True West, the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art is one of only two such museums east of the Mississippi. Works of sculpture decorate the lawn and invite guests in to view the traditional and contemporary works of artists such as Georgia O’Keefe and Andy Warhol.

  1. Victory Field

Home to the Indianapolis Indians, Victory Field is a 14,200-set ballpark located on the west side of Indianapolis. Recognized as one of the best ballparks in the United States by publications such as Baseball AmericaSports Illustrated, and Midwest Living, Victory Field is the perfect spot for a day trip in Indy. The Tribe play a 70-game home schedule running from April all the way through September. Pro Tip: its panoramic views of the downtown skyline are some of the best in the city!

  1. Lucas Oil Stadium

Next on the list of incredible sports venues is Lucas Oil Stadium, home of the Indianapolis Colts. This retractable roof multi-purpose venue can seat over 63,000 for footballs games and concerts. Perks of the stadium include public tours given every week that give participants an up-close and personal look at the playing field, an NFL locker room, Lucas Oil Plaza, the press box, and numerous other areas that are generally inaccessible to the public. For diehard football fans, this is an opportunity don’t want to pass up!

  1. Banker’s Life Fieldhouse

Sports Business Journal has named Banker’s Life Fieldhouse the finest NBA basketball arena in the country, and for good reason! This retro-style fieldhouse in the heart of downtown offers the classic basketball feel that you love paired with the special effects and technology to get fans on their feet. The NBA Pacers and World Champion WNBA Fever find their home here, as well as various concerts and special events.

  1. Indianapolis Motor Speedway

Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines! Indianapolis Motor Speedway is known as “The Greatest Race Course in the World” by fanatics and casual siteseers alike. Nestled in the town of Speedway, Indiana, within the city of Indianapolis, IMS is most known globally for hosting the largest single-day sporting event in the world, the Indianapolis 500. Fans from every continent make the trip to visit this electric and historic venue. As host to the Verizon IndyCar Series, NASCAR, Red Bull Air Race, LPGA and many other forms of racing and events throughout the year, it’s no wonder that Indy has been named The Racing Capital of the World. If you haven’t been to a race yet, you certainly need to!

  1. Eagle Creek Park

Eagle Creek Park covers more than 3,900 acres across the northside of Indianapolis, rendering it one of the nation’s largest city parks. Hiking and picnicking enthusiasts will enjoy the park’s breathtaking trails and campgrounds. The park also features a unique, 1,400-acre lake that frequently hosts the U.S. Rowing National Championship. Residents of Indy and surrounding areas love this spot for its ropes course, swimming, canoeing, kayaking, and boating.

  1. The Canal & White River State Park District

Whether it's a relaxing stroll, vigorous run, day at the ballpark, interacting with dolphins, discovering Indiana history, exploring Native American art, learning about Lincoln or enjoying an outdoor concert, the Canal and White River State Park Cultural District has something for everyone, including authentic gondola rides! This is not your typical waterway, as the this cultural destination boasts public art, unique cafes, and more!

For a look at our tour of Things To Do in Indianapolis, visit our campus map.


Top 15 Things To Do in Indy

  Indianapolis is a bustling city with unforgettable experiences around every corner.

Top 15 Things To Do in Indy

by Elizabeth Duis ’20

Martha Hoover, Patachou founder and owner, to Deliver Winter Commencement Address

BY Rachel Stern

PUBLISHED ON Nov 12 2018

INDIANAPOLIS—Martha Hoover, founder and owner of Patachou Inc., a James Beard Award semifinalist (three times), and one of the 20 Most Innovative Women in Food and Drink (according to Food & Wine), will be the recipient of an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters and will serve as the keynote speaker at Butler University’s Winter Commencement.

Winter Commencement will take place on Saturday, December 15, 2018 at 10:00 AM in Clowes Memorial Hall. About 135 students are expected to receive their diplomas.

“In choosing honorary degree recipients and speakers, Butler selects individuals whose lives reflect our University’s core values and whose message can positively impact our students,” President James Danko said. “Martha Hoover embodies not only the entrepreneurial spirit we encourage in our students, but the responsible leadership and civic engagement that makes a meaningful difference in our world.”

Hoover has worked to build restaurants that double as vehicles for social change. She has established financial literacy courses for her employees, as well as the Patachou Emergency Relief Fund. In 2012, she established The Patachou Foundation, which has served more than 100,000 healthy meals to at-risk and food-insecure children in the Indianapolis community to date.

Hoover founded Patachou Inc. in 1989 and opened her first restaurant, Café Patachou, in March 1989. Today, the company has six restaurant brands in 14 locations across Indianapolis.

Hoover was a founding board member of Impact 100 of Greater Indianapolis and has served on the boards of the Indiana AIDS Network, Dance Kaleidoscope, and Women’s Fund of Central Indiana.

Before becoming an entrepreneur, Hoover was an attorney in the Marion County Prosecutor’s sex crimes division. She is a graduate of both IU Bloomington and the IU Robert H. McKinney School of Law at IUPUI.

Butler’s selection of commencement speakers and honorary degree recipients is a result of a nomination process, and subsequent committee review and vetting process.


Media contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications


Martha Hoover, Patachou founder and owner, to Deliver Winter Commencement Address

Indianapolis entrepreneur to receive Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters.

Nov 12 2018 Read more

Indiana Landmarks Honors Butler for Restoration of Hinkle Fieldhouse


PUBLISHED ON Apr 16 2015

Indiana Landmarks, a private nonprofit organization that saves historic places, has selected Butler University as the winner of its annual Cook Cup for Outstanding Restoration for its preservation of Hinkle Fieldhouse. The dome of Indiana Landmarks Center’s Grand Hall will turn Butler blue when Director of Athletics Barry Collier, Executive Director of Facilities Rich Michal, and Butler Blue III accept the silver cup at an event on April 25 in Indianapolis.

Although Hinkle appeared sturdy and timeless, it was a National Historic Landmark in need of attention before Butler launched a $36.2 million restoration that concluded last year.

Hinkle FieldhouseThe university’s enrollment barely topped 1,000 when Fermor Spencer Cannon designed Butler Fieldhouse in 1928 to seat 15,000. The fieldhouse has hosted graduations, addresses by six U.S. presidents, a concert with 125 pianos, indoor track meets in the ‘30s where Jesse Owens set a world record, and a World War II barracks.

To many Hoosiers, Hinkle will forever be remembered as the home of Indiana’s single-class high school basketball championship. Angelo Pizzo, who wrote the screenplay for the movie Hoosiers, called the fieldhouse “a work of art and a thing of beauty.”

In designing the restoration, design team leader RATIO Architects followed Collier’s mantra: “keep Hinkle, Hinkle” and his variation, “make Hinkle more Hinkle.”

“Keeping Hinkle, Hinkle” meant tuckpointing all the masonry, restoring the steel-sash windows and replicating those that were too rusted to save. “The windows contribute to Hinkle’s signature ambiance, a place flooded with natural light that lends the exposed steel girders a sculptural quality,” says Indiana Landmarks President Marsh Davis, a Butler alum.

Filled over the years with mismatched glass, the windows were retrofit with 9,700 new energy-efficient panes. Because Butler won a federal preservation grant for the window rehab, the entire project followed federal restoration guidelines.

Inside, to “make Hinkle more Hinkle,” the restoration removed cement-block offices, storage closets and concession stands under the bleachers and on the concourse. This change returned the original configuration, opening up the concourses and uncovering the trusses that rise up and over the barrel-vaulted ceiling.

To improve conditions for student athletes and attract recruits, Butler renovated the West Gym and dingy locker rooms, training and workout areas, and the academic center. They created new spaces for these functions and athletic offices in a dark, unused natatorium north of the West Gym, adding two floors in the space, opening up bricked-in windows, and installing an elevator that makes the upper levels of the fieldhouse handicapped accessible for the first time.

“The restoration means that the Bulldogs can continue to attract student athletes and, in 2115, Hinkle Fieldhouse will still be standing strong,” declares Carl Cook, Indiana Landmarks board chairman and head of the Cook Cup selection committee. He will present the Cook Cup at Rescue Party, an annual benefit for Indiana Landmarks’ Endangered Places programs. Tickets for the April 25 event are $75 per person and must be purchased in advance at or by calling 317-639-4534.

College and Greek Life—Be Who You Are

Krisy Force

#DeltOfTheWeek postSenior Andrew Thompson ’18, who is a brother in Delta Tau Delta and the chapter’s Director of Recruitment, believes a lot of students go to college with negative perceptions of what Greek life is about.

He’s one of several people working to change that.

Social media campaigns showcasing the real side of Butler’s Greek Life have caught on over the course of the last year, tackling the negative stigmas associated with fraternity and sorority life.

“Social media is an easy medium to get a glimpse into what Greek life is all about,” Thompson said. “Our campaigns can provide a window into what the chapter looks like to those who are on the outside.”

Thompson’s campaign, #DeltOfTheWeek, showcases individuals within the chapter each week doing amazing things like studying abroad or working at an internship. Similar campaigns include Sigma Nu’s #SNUOfTheWeek, Phi Delta Theta’s #PhidayFriday, and Beta Theta Pi’s Founding Father Spotlight.

Public Relations Chair for Sigma Nu Dave Mizsak ’20 said that he took a more comedic approach to the campaign by utilizing another fraternity’s photo that included a brother of Sigma Nu in the background. It's a way to “bring a different eye to the person of the week, put fun into it, and show people the real side of Sigma Nu.”#SNUOfTheWeek post

As for the sororities, most showcase their chapter by having the sisters utilize a hashtag on their individual accounts so that it can feed into the sorority's main Instagram or Facebook account. Hashtags include: Kappa Alpha Theta’s #ThetaThursday; Kappa Kappa Gamma’s #TravelTuesday, Delta Delta Delta’s #TDTuesday; Delta Gamma’s #WhyIWentDGWednesday; and Phi Beta Phi’s #UniquelyPiPhi and #PiPhiFriday.

Laiyla Grayson ’18, Director of Formal Recruitment for Alpha Phi, took their campaign one step further by creating a “Sisterhood of the Traveling Jacket” of sorts.  An oversized jean jacket that says: Alpha Phi Doesn’t Define Me, I Define Alpha Phi, travels from sister to sister every day, and members write one word describing what Alpha Phi means to them.

“When we were looking for recruitment ideas we were trying to think about the negative stereotypes that people use to define us, but we stopped and realized we weren’t going to let other people define Alpha Phi, and we also weren’t going to let Alpha Phi define us—which really ties into the whole Butler experience,” Grayson said.

Once a sister gets the jacket and writes one word, she then posts to social media with the hashtag #AlphaPhiToMe and shares the one word. Posts on #AlphaPhiToMe have included compassionate, bold, lady bosses, and even edgy.

Butler’s Greek life social media campaigns and Alpha Phi’s jacket project are ways to show students that college and Greek life are what you make it, and each fraternity and sorority will encourage you to be exactly who you are.#AlphaPhiToMe post

“There are so many different experiences you can make your own,” Grayson said. “You can be a part of something bigger than yourself—whether that’s Greek life, Alpha Phi, or Butler—but you’re still an individual and you still fit in to this bigger experience.”


Butler University’s First Live Bulldog Mascot, Blue I, Has Died


PUBLISHED ON May 30 2014

Butler Blue I, the white English bulldog who served as Butler University’s first official live mascot, died this morning, Friday, May 30, 2014. She was 13 years old.

Blue I was born September 23, 2000, at Frank and Jeane King’s Kong King Kennel in Lizton, Indiana. She served as Butler University’s official mascot from 2000–2004, and then accompanied her human companion, Kelli Walker ’91, to Bellingham, Washington; Morris, Illinois; and Chicago.

"For over 13 years Blue lived an extraordinary life. Her noble heart stopped today; instead of feeling empty, my heart is twice as full for loving her,” said Walker.

The concept of “Butler Blue” existed for about a year before Blue I, as she was known, became an integral part of life at Butler University and beyond. Walker worked in Butler’s Office of Alumni and Parent Programs from 1998–2004; in 1999, Walker began exploring what a live mascot program would encompass.

Under the initially skeptical—and ultimately, supportive—leadership of William T. Farkas ’88, then Executive Director of Alumni and Development Programs, Walker gathered information from peer institutions (including Drake University, University of Georgia, and Yale University). Then-Butler President Gwen Fountain supported the initiative, and in fact insisted on including Blue I in her presidential portrait, which currently hangs in Robertson Hall.

Carving out a place in an academic institution for a live mascot program was a multi-faceted effort, including securing financial support from an anonymous alumni donor (to purchase the original dog; subsequent mascots have been donated generously by Kong King Kennel, which quickly became beloved members of the Butler family), food, and veterinary care (Dr. Kurt Phillips ‘92), as well as managing the complex logistics of the day-to-day life of a mascot.

 In fall 2000, Butler held a community-wide naming contest for the new mascot. While “Hinkle,” “Hampton,” and even “Buttercup” were popular vote-getters, “Butler Blue” was the top choice.

Butler Blue I made her inaugural appearance on the court of Hinkle Fieldhouse, carried in the arms of the costumed bulldog mascot (now known as “Hink”). In addition to attending men’s and women’s basketball games—where she rallied with the cheerleaders and the Dawg Pound before retiring to the bleachers to sleep—Blue I attended other collegiate sporting events and made regular visits to classrooms, residence halls, campus events, staff and faculty events, commencement, and even the annual Rejoice holiday concert, where she rode a sleigh across stage to the tune of “Blue Christmas.”

“Bulldog Fridays” drew great numbers of visitors to the Alumni Office in Robertson Hall.

Blue I traveled to the NCAA Tournament in 2003, where she famously was “sneaked into” a hotel under the cover of a Butler hooded sweatshirt and the Butler University Pep Band.

Blue I was almost all white with brown spotted ears. She maintained an ideal conformation her entire life and was not plagued by health problems typical of many bulldogs.

Blue I loved playing tug with her rope toy, lying in the grass at her grandparents’ home, eating carrots and apples, and sleeping under a blanket. In her later years she became close buddies with her two feline brothers. She appeared on stage in Chicago as “Rufus” in “Legally Blonde,” proving that, even at age 12, she still could take the stage and capture the hearts of an audience.

As the matriarch of a Butler Bulldog legacy, Blue I will rest in peace along side her successor, Butler Blue II (March 24, 2004–August 31, 2013), in a new Bulldog Memorial currently being erected on campus. The memorial—a gift of the Class of 2013 along with support from generous donors to the Campaign for Hinkle Fieldhouse and live mascot program­—will be dedicated at Butler’s Homecoming festivities in September of this year.

Current mascot duties are being assumed by Butler Blue III (December 23, 2011)—a red brindle English bulldog, also from Kong King Kennel—who took over for Blue II in spring 2013. For more information on Butler University’s live mascot program, visit

Those wishing to honor the life and service of Blue I may make a gift in her memory to the Bulldog Memorial. To do so, visit Butler's online giving site, select “Other” from the gift designation drop-down menu and enter “Bulldog Memorial” in the space provided. Additional information about the Bulldog Memorial is available at 

The Farm at Butler
Butler BeyondCampusCommunity

Getting To The Root of It: How Butler’s One-Acre Farm Has Evolved In a Decade

BY Katie Grieze

PUBLISHED ON Nov 25 2019

This story is part of a mini-series exploring The Farm at Butler, its methods, and its mission. Part one of six.


On the west side of Butler University’s campus, nestled between a leafy stretch of the Central Canal Towpath to the southeast and Butler’s athletic fields to the northwest, a one-acre farm sits in stillness. If you walk along the narrow plant beds, the sun on your neck and the songs of house finches fluttering in your ears, you’ll probably forget you’re still in the heart of Indiana’s capital city.

Today, The Farm at Butler (previously called the CUE Farm) is an ongoing sustainable agriculture project that serves a wide range of roles on campus and in the Indianapolis area. The Farm teaches people about growing produce in a way that’s healthy for both humans and the Earth. It promotes research and place-based learning for faculty, staff, students, and members of the community, and it connects food to a variety of careers through recruiting student interns to help keep things running.

But back in 2010, it started as just a place to grow food. A student-run group called Earth Charter Butler broke ground on the space with help from the young Center for Urban Ecology & Sustainability (CUES), an academic center at Butler that celebrated its 10-year anniversary last year. But the effort was mostly student-driven.

Julie Elmore, a 2010 graduate from Butler’s Biology program who helped launch The Farm, first learned about an ethical framework called the Earth Charter in an honors class. The global sustainability movement, which formed in the late 1990s with a mission of uniting Earth’s cultures to work toward protecting the planet and bringing peace to the world, inspired Elmore and a few of her classmates to grow more connected with nature.

“One of the things that kept popping up regarding how you can relate the planet to people was food and where our food comes from,” she says. “We wanted to see more local food, and how much more local can our food get as students than being produced on campus?”

When the students graduated, the CUES took over. The Farm became one part of the Center’s mission to educate and empower Butler and Indianapolis in following best practices of urban ecology.

After funding from the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust helped the CUES hire Tim Dorsey as full-time Farm Manager in 2011, Dorsey worked to expand the project from one-third of an acre to its current one-acre plot. The Farm now grows more than 70 different kinds of plants—closer to 200 if you include the different species of each crop. In just one acre, the space fits onions, garlic, bell peppers, cabbage, hot peppers, tomatoes, peach trees, apple trees, berries, and way more.

“The mission of The Farm, at first,” says CUES Director Julia Angstmann, “was to be a model for other agriculture projects in the city—to show what can be done on an acre, and to show how to do it in an ecologically sound way.”

And while The Farm still stays involved across Indianapolis, recent years have seen a return to its roots of focusing on Butler.

“We still have that original motive of being an educator in the city,” Angstmann says. “But we have renewed our commitment to the Butler community.”



Part 1: Getting To The Root of It: How Butler’s One-Acre Farm Has Evolved In a Decade

Part 2: Farming Full-Time: How Tim Dorsey Discovered the World Through Agriculture

Part 3: A Crash Course on Nature-Focused, Hands-In-The-Dirt Growing

Part 4: Sustainability on the Syllabus

Part 5: A Model for Urban Farming in Indianapolis

Part 6: So, Where Does All The Food Go?


Explore the full Farm at Butler mini-series here


Media Contact:

Katie Grieze

News Content Manager

260-307-3403 (cell)


Innovations in Teaching and Learning

One of the distinguishing features of a Butler education has always been the meaningful and enduring relationships between our faculty and students. Gifts to this pillar during Butler Beyond will accelerate our commitment to investing in faculty excellence by adding endowed positions, supporting faculty scholarship and research, renovating and expanding state-of-the-art teaching facilities, and more. Learn more, make a gift, and read other stories like this one at

The Farm at Butler
Butler BeyondCampusCommunity

Getting To The Root of It: How Butler’s One-Acre Farm Has Evolved In a Decade

Since 2010, The Farm at Butler has been a place for people to connect with the world and one another.

Nov 25 2019 Read more

Butler-IUPUI Project Wins National Sustainability Competition


PUBLISHED ON Oct 10 2016

Butler University and IUPUI beat 225 colleges and universities to win the $50,000 Sustainable Campus Competition LIVE! by presenting a proposal to expand food waste composting at both universities.

CompostingButler Sustainability Coordinator McKenzie Beverage and IUPUI Sustainability Director Jessica Davis presented “University Collaboration to Scale Food Waste Collection on Campus and in the Community” on Monday, October 10, in Baltimore before a panel of judges at the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) Conference and Expo.

Their plan will begin with both universities sharing the cost of having a trash hauler cart away the food waste from dining halls at both campuses. The hope is to eventually bring other Indianapolis organizations on board to share and ultimately lower the cost of hauling.

“The idea is to remove the barrier to entry, change the market, and make this more affordable for other organizations to participate,” Beverage said.

Butler started a pilot composting project in 2014 after Beverage’s class secured funding from SGA to compost for a year. Under that program, which is ongoing, 800 pounds of pre-consumer food waste like the tops of peppers and apple cores are taken to a composting facility each week rather than incinerated. IUPUI has started composting pre-consumer food waste in their main dining hall, with the hopes of expanding to post-consumer food waste quickly. Large-scale composting helps both universities meet their sustainability goals of waste reduction and reducing emissions associated with climate change.

Each University hauling food waste on their own was cost prohibitive, so Beverage approached IUPUI in the spring, and together she and Davis devised the proposal to collaborate.  By recruiting community partners, commercial composting will become cost competitive in Indianapolis.

“Sustainable solutions don’t begin and end on our campuses,” Davis said. “For sustainability to be impactful, it must go beyond the campus.”

Sustainable Campus Competition LIVE! was hosted by Kimberly-Clark Professional. The competition featured three rounds. All entrants submitted their best idea in 500 words or less about a campus initiative related to energy, waste, food, water or climate change.

From there, 10 semi-finalists were invited to submit a two-minute video and one-page financial overview of their project. Three finalists were chosen to present their project in front of a panel of judges and a live audience at the AASHE Conference & Expo.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler-IUPUI Project Wins National Sustainability Competition

“Sustainable solutions don’t begin and end on our campuses. For sustainability to be impactful, it must go beyond the campus.”

Oct 10 2016 Read more
Student LifeCampus

Reducing Food Waste Is Their Goal. This Is Their Story.


PUBLISHED ON Apr 29 2016

The Food Recovery Network is one of several sustainability efforts on campus.

By Hayley Ross '17

Making sure they don’t throw out the extra food on their plate is not enough for Bailey Armstrong ’16 and Olivia Carroll ’17. As executive members of Butler’s Food Recovery Network, their goal is bigger: eliminating food waste across campus.

“I look for opportunities to decrease waste wherever I go,” Armstrong said. “There are such easy ways to do it. If I am talking to a younger friend, I am always promoting the Food Recovery Network.”

Lauren Wathen, Olivia Carroll, and Bailey Armstrong are working to reduce food waste on campus
Lauren Wathen, Olivia Carroll, and Bailey Armstrong are working to reduce food waste on campus.


Armstrong started the club in fall 2014 when her sister’s friend, who is one of the founders of the national program, told her to apply to create a chapter on Butler’s campus. After a couple of weekly calls with the program’s headquarters, she was able to make it official.

She said she went to Butler’s alternative block party ready to find others as passionate as she is.

“That’s where I met Olivia,” Armstrong said. “I also met Emily Guglielmo, who is now on our executive team as well.”

Guglielmo had transferred from the University of Michigan, which already had a Food Recovery Network chapter. Soon after, they met Lauren Wathen, current president, who joined them in making a four-person leadership team ready to conquer food sustainability and food waste prevention.

The Food Recovery Network’s efforts are just one part of the sustainability efforts on campus. Dining Services composts about 800 pounds of pre-consumer food waste—like the tops of peppers and apple cores—each week. This began in April 2015, thanks to an SGA grant.

In January 2015 they made their first recovery—taking all unused, untouched food that can’t be resold and donating it to the Julian Center, a center for women who have been domestically abused.

“We started at Hinkle after a basketball game,” Armstrong said. “We asked Dining Services, ‘If you think we are doing a good job at the games, can we do them in the dining halls?’ And now we have them twice a week at Atherton and at all home men’s basketball games.”

They have collected about 1,000 pounds of food in the past year.

“We view the amount of food we have recovered as an accomplishment, but also as a sign that there’s a lot more work to do to diminish food waste,” Armstrong said.

Each semester the network members meet with Dining Services’ head chef and the team that orders the food served at Atherton to discuss how much is being wasted.

“We just want to make them aware,” Carroll said. “They have been incredibly responsive.”

There are now 10 members of their executive team, although there are many more working these recoveries.

“The cool thing is that we have executive members that are really passionate, but also volunteers who can come for an hour or so,” Carroll said. “It’s great to have that balance that keeps the sustainability going.”

Other student organizations also pair with them weekly to do food recoveries. They said their goal is to make Butler students more aware.

“Awareness changes a society,” Carroll said. “Although we may not do this as a profession, Food Recovery has taught me a lot about the immense amount of food wasted in this country and the hunger in this country. We tend to focus abroad, but we have a huge problem in our own country.”

For more information on the organization and how to volunteer, visit the Butler Food Recovery Network Facebook page or contact Lauren Wathen at


Butler Welcomes the Class of 2021


PUBLISHED ON Aug 17 2017

Butler University will welcome 1,065 first-year students on move-in day, Saturday, August 19. Classes begin on Wednesday, August 23.

This year, 14,638 prospective students applied to Butler, a 13 percent increase compared with 2016. In the last two years, the University has seen more than 40 percent growth in first-year applications for admission.
Class of 2021Butler’s Class of 2021 continues the University’s track record of attracting high-quality, academically prepared students. Here’s a look at some numbers.

-36 Valedictorians and 11 Salutatorians

-6 National Merit Finalists

-16 Lilly Scholars

-234 (22 percent) in the top 10 percent of their high school graduating class

-GPA (average): 3.8

The Class of 2021 comes from 35 states and five countries. 43 percent are from Indiana, and 57 percent are from out of state. Fifteen percent of the class is from the Chicagoland area. This year’s class shows significant growth in new students from the Mid-Atlantic region (42), double the number from last year’s class.

Sixteen percent of the class are U.S. students of color or international citizens. Fourteen percent of the class is multicultural and 2 percent are international.

The most popular majors this year are Pre-Pharmacy (107), Exploratory Studies (107), and Biology (73).

Individual student achievements include:


Austin Valleskey (Hoffman Estates, Illinois) – Developed Impossible Rush, a game intended to improve cognitive skills, which has over 1 million downloads on iTunes to date and was featured on NBC, WGN, Forbes, Business Insider, and the Huffington Post.

Isabella Ruscheinski (Peoria, Illinois) – At 15, started her own cupcake/catering business, which she still runs.


Tamalynn OGrady (Dexter, Michigan) – Disheartened by the rising costs associated with the arts, she founded a community service organization aimed at providing free music education to those who may otherwise not have the means. She gave free cello lessons seven days a week during the summer of 2016.

Ethan King (West Olive, Michigan) – When he was 10, he founded Charity Ball, which has raised money to hand-deliver thousands of soccer balls and clean drinking water to kids in impoverished areas all over the world.


Haylie Hansen (Pewaukee, Wisconsin) – Saved her cousin’s life with CPR her freshman year of high school.


Will Butler Haughey III (Concord, California) – The great, great, great, great grandson of Ovid Butler. He is also the great, great, great grandson of William Wallace, whose brother wrote Ben-Hur.

Henry Johnston (Arlington Heights, Illinois) – His great, great, great, great grandfather was married to Mabel Butler, sister of Ovid Butler.

The University will also welcome 80 new transfer students to campus this fall, including one Lilly Scholar.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler Welcomes the Class of 2021

Butler University will welcome 1,065 first-year students on move-in day, Saturday, August 19.

Aug 17 2017 Read more

Clowes Hall Introduces Sensory-Enhanced Seating for the Hearing Impaired


PUBLISHED ON Apr 09 2014

Beginning Friday, April 11, Clowes Memorial Hall will launch a first-of-its-kind project that enhances the concert performance experience through a system it has dubbed “audio sensory enhanced seating.” These seats are equipped with technology designed to convert audio into vibration to create physical sensation from sound.

clowesfullhouse0113 001The project started through an idea by Joshua Lingenfelter, Clowes Memorial Hall Director of Marketing, after an experience he had at the Clowes Box Office.

“We had a concert one evening, and the performer was also on a popular TV show at the time,” Lingenfelter said. “A man came to the window and wrote down on a piece of paper that he would like a refund. His wife stood behind him as they both communicated via sign language and written notes. Essentially, they were both fans of the performer being on TV, but even though the husband had great intentions, the wife couldn’t fathom attending a concert when they can’t hear.”

“That sparked an idea for me: What if we changed the way we perceived music by not only hearing it, but also feeling it. Would that have changed their minds about attending the concert? This wasn’t an entirely new concept. Think back to the stories of Beethoven chopping off the legs of his piano after losing his hearing in order to feel the vibrations and you can see where the idea comes from. If we aren’t able to hear it, can we feel it instead?”

Lingenfelter, who is also a percussionist, was familiar with a technology called the Buttkicker® sound enhancement system. The ButtKicker® brand low-frequency audio transducers were developed to solve a problem between a bass player and his drummer. They wanted to be able to feel the low end of the music without turning the stage monitors up so loud that it disturbed the rest of the band. A low-frequency audio transducer allows the user to feel powerful bass without excessive volume.

This week, Clowes will install eight systems into seats, which will be reviewed by members of the deaf and hard-of-hearing community during the weekend performance of Blue Man Group at no cost through a generous grant from The Broadway League.

In recent years, the ButtKicker® technology has been installed with commercial applications, bringing excitement and depth to theatres for hearing audiences. Current customers include Disney: Mission Space, Center of Science and Industry – Columbus, Ohio, and Kennedy Space Center. Lingenfelter imagined that if he could use that same technology in the seats of Clowes Memorial Hall, then this could create an option to have music be a valid evening of entertainment for those who had no ability to hear.

Before proceeding with program development for this project, each department at Clowes worked together to develop a test of the ButtKicker® system with a performance of West Side Story at Clowes Hall on June 9, 2013. Clowes invited audience members from the deaf and hard-of-hearing community to attend an ASL-interpreted performance and sit in a seat with the ButtKicker® unit. Invitations were extended to a member of the deaf community and his hearing family, teachers and students from the Indiana School for the Deaf (ISD) and ASL interpreters. This test allowed the patrons to feel the vibrations of the music in the show, enhancing their Broadway performance experience. Patron feedback was positive.

Clowes made initial calls to The Guitammer Company (owners of the Buttkicker technology) in May 2013 to investigate options to use the ButtKicker® at Clowes Hall with a specific focus on music productions. Ernie Yezzi, Clowes sound stagehand, spoke with Mark Luden, CEO and President of The Guitammer Company, to explore new potential uses for the equipment.

To date, the ButtKicker® has never been used in live musical theatre performances or to enhance the performance experience for deaf and hard-of-hearing audiences. This presents a unique opportunity for Clowes to pilot a program with potential national replication.

The education and marketing departments at Clowes plan to follow up with extensive research following the weekend to further develop the technology.

“Those of us who can hear don’t think twice about going to a concert for an evening of entertainment,” Lingenfelter said. “For those who are deaf or hard of hearing, a concert may be of little to no interest. However, if we can convert the way our senses perceive music then we can serve all populations in our community.”


Media contact:
Josh Lingenfelter



Leading with LEED

BY Marc Allan

PUBLISHED ON Dec 13 2018

Butler University's commitment to environmental sustainability was rewarded when Irvington House, the new residence hall that opened this year, was awarded LEED Gold status for its conservation elements integrated into the design and construction of the facility.

This is Butler's sixth LEED project on campus and its fifth certified gold. Other LEED-certified projects are: the addition to the Pharmacy Building (gold); the Howard L. Schrott Center for the Arts (gold), the Hinkle Fieldhouse Administrative wing (gold), the Athletic Annex (silver), and the Fairview House residence hall (gold).

Irvington House was built in partnership with American Campus Communities, which also built Fairview House.

“I greatly appreciate our partnership with American Campus Communities in helping create another wonderful, sustainable building on campus," said Doug Morris, Associate Vice President of Facilities. "It is critical for us to continue developing sustainable buildings and spaces across campus that not only minimize the use of natural resources, but also provide healthy spaces for our students, faculty and staff to live, work and play.”

Irvington House was recognized for:

-Maximized open space. More than 60,000 square feet was designated as vegetated open space while over 32,000 square feet was designated as pedestrian-oriented sidewalks and other paving.

-Alternative transportation. The building occupants have access to two different public bus routes, reducing greenhouses gas emissions and the building’s footprint.

-Reduced water use. Low-flush, low-flow fixtures decrease potable water usage by more than 46 percent, resulting in 3.5 million gallons of water saved per year.

-Responsible material choices. Recycling collection bins have been provided in multiple locations throughout the facility so that plastic, glass, metals, paper, and corrugated cardboard can easily be recycled by residents and visitors. More than 85 percent of the construction and demolition debris generated was diverted from landfills, more than 20 percent of the total value of construction materials used consisted of recycled content, and over 45 percent of the total value of construction materials used consisted of products that were manufactured and harvested within 500 miles of Indianapolis.

-Reduced energy consumption. Efficient lighting design and use of LED fixtures result in over 50 percent savings in total lighting energy usage when compared to a baseline building. In addition, heating, ventilating, and cooling systems were selected to maximize energy savings where life-cycle cost effective.

-Improved indoor environmental quality. The building was designed so that over 90 percent of all regularly occupied areas within the building has views access to the exterior. Throughout the building, a high level of lighting and thermal system control is available to individual occupants or groups in multi-occupant spaces, which promotes occupant productivity, comfort, and well-being.

-Reduced heat island effect. A white roof was selected to avoid artificially elevating ambient temperatures, and specific hardscapes were chosen to be light in color so that they minimize their heat-island impacts on microclimates and human and wildlife habitats. 

 LEED—Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design—is the most widely used green building rating system in the world and is a globally recognized symbol of sustainability achievement. Gold is the second-highest rating, behind platinum.


Media contact:
Marc Allan MFA '18
News Manager


Leading with LEED

Irvington House was built in partnership with American Campus Communities, which also built Fairview House.

Dec 13 2018 Read more

Jacob Reeves ’18 Named Inaugural Hendricks Fellow

BY Kailey Eaton ’17

PUBLISHED ON Nov 10 2016

The inaugural 2016-17 Hendricks Fellowship has been awarded to junior Jacob Reeves for his project studying how wildlife use Butler University’s campus as their home.
Jacob Reeves

The Fellowship was established in 2016 through a donation from Dr. Frederick Hendricks, a urologist with a lifelong passion for conservation and the study of Indiana ecosystems. The Hendricks Fellowship is given to undergraduate students to support their scientific research, preferably in the area of conservation or Indiana ecosystems.

Reeves, a Biology major with minors in Chemistry and Mathematics, used his passion and interest in the outdoors as the fuel behind his winning research project, the Butler Wildlife Watch. Reeves’s research will allow him to identify the regions and habitats on campus that are most valuable to wildlife through the use of motion triggered wildlife cameras.

The goal of the study is to increase knowledge of what areas on campus need to be conserved the most while also keeping in mind campus’s future development plans.

“This [project] becomes increasingly important with our current push for expansion, so that we can design facilities with the conservation of wildlife in mind,” he said.

Reeves said he got his inspiration for the project from Indy Wildlife Watch, where he is an intern. Indy Wildlife Watch’s program was created to measure wildlife conservation through the greater Indianapolis area. Reeves has been working on his project for just under a year with professors Carmen Salsbury and Travis Ryan, and Julia Angstmann, the Director of Butler’s Center for Urban Ecology, who serves as his faculty mentor.

Reeves said the Fellowship will provide him with the funds for all the equipment necessary to complete his research as well as to attend research conferences. He plans to present his results at the Butler Undergraduate Research Conference as well as the Indiana Academy of Sciences Conference in 2018.

Reeves is more than grateful for the opportunity he was given through the generosity of Dr. Hendricks. The fund is administered by the Center for High Achievement and Scholalry Engagement (CHASE). According to the CHASE website, applications for the next Hendricks Fellow will open in September 2017.

“Too few are the people willing to give toward the furthering of our knowledge of the world we live in—especially directly to conservation efforts,” Reeves said. “It truly restores my faith in our world to know that there are generous people who believe in this cause as wholeheartedly as I do, and who are willing to fund projects like mine.”


Jacob Reeves ’18 Named Inaugural Hendricks Fellow

The Center for High Achievement and Scholarly Engagement (CHASE) announced the winner of the 2016-17 Hendricks Fellowship, which is awarded to a student who completes a scientific research project in the area of conservation or Indiana ecosystems.

Nov 10 2016 Read more

Butler University Listed Among the Best in the Nation for Undergraduate Education


PUBLISHED ON Sep 09 2014

Butler University is among the top schools in the country when it comes to enriched undergraduate offerings that lead to student success, according to U.S.News & World Report.

In its “Best Colleges” edition, released today, U.S. News highlighted Butler as one of the nation’s finest in five categories: the first-year student experience, internships, study abroad, service learning, and undergraduate research/creative projects. Such areas of enriched offerings, said U.S. News, demonstrate that “some colleges and universities are much more determined than others to provide freshmen and all undergrads with the best possible educational experience.”

Butler was one of only three universities in the United States recognized in five or more categories, and was recognized in more categories than all other Indiana schools combined.

Butler President James M. Danko said this recognition of Butler’s focus on student success reflects its core academic mission. “This year’s edition of ‘Best Colleges’ highlights our commitment to the provision of outstanding undergraduate learning experiences—firmly rooted in the liberal arts—within a residential campus environment.”

Butler’s student activity rates underscore the power of the school’s educational approach: nearly all students participate in some form of internship, student teaching, clinical rotation, research, or service learning. And within 6 months of graduation, 96 percent of new alumni are employed, attending graduate school, or involved in a gap-year experience. “These rates are the result of our students’ hard work, the dedication of our faculty and staff to high standards of academic excellence and support for our students, and the unique experiential learning opportunities that both Butler and Indianapolis provide.”

For the sixth consecutive year, Butler was ranked No. 2 overall among Midwest schools, behind only Creighton University. Butler was also listed among the Midwest’s “best value schools,” and led the top-10 Midwest universities in several categories, including percent of freshmen in the top quarter of their high-school class (81 percent), percent of alumni who support the university through giving (23 percent), freshman retention rate (90 percent), and percent of applicants accepted to the university (66 percent).

Media contact:
Marc Allan



Would You Give a Kidney to a Facebook Friend? She Did.


PUBLISHED ON Feb 23 2017

Laura Coker Blandford ’97 posted an urgent message on Facebook on August 27, 2016: Unless a kidney donor stepped forward soon, she would die a slow death.
Kidney donor Tracy Pabst got a visit from Trip.

“I want to see my son graduate high school, college,” she wrote. “I want to be a grandmother and spoil his children rotten and I truly feel like I have so much life left in me that I want to live!”

Tracy Tyndall Pabst ’98 read the note, “and it just got me.”

Pabst knew Blandford as a Delta Gamma sorority sister and Facebook friend. While “we weren’t super-duper close,” Pabst looked at Blandford and saw a daughter, a wife, a mother of an 11-year-old boy, a woman whose kidneys were failing due to complications related to Crohn's disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and other ailments.

Letting her die was unthinkable.

Then Blandford posted again, this time mentioning that her blood type is O-positive. Pabst thought that might be her blood type too. She gave blood and yes, she and Blandford matched.

“So that was my first sign,” Pabst said.

A few weeks later, Pabst talked to her husband, Sean. “She sat me down on the couch one Sunday evening before dinner,” he recalled. “She said, ‘Hey, I need to talk to you about something.’ It’s never good when your spouse starts a sentence that way. But she told me and I said, ‘I know you well enough that you wouldn’t verbalize this if you hadn’t already made up your mind.’ So I was in full support.”
Ty, Brayden, and Laura Blandford

Pabst talked to her father and mother, a doctor and nurse, respectively, and “they were totally on board with it.”

In September, Pabst and Blandford began the process to make sure they were a match.

On December 6, they found out they were. “I just broke out in tears,” Blandford said.

And on January 19, Blandford received Pabst’s left kidney in an operation at a hospital in Lexington, Kentucky, about an hour from her home in Louisville.

The day after, Blandford posted a video on Facebook: “Everything went well. Just want to let you know you now have a friend who has three kidneys. So I’m extra awesome now.” She’s faced some complications since, but is back home now.

And Pabst, a pharmacist, was cleared to go back to work after three weeks.

Pabst said the response to her remarkably selfless act has been overwhelming. A table in the sunroom of her Indianapolis home is covered in cards and gifts—some from people she doesn’t know who heard about what she did.
Family, friends, and even people she doesn't know showered Tracy Pabst with gifts.

No one, of course, was more grateful than the Blandford family.

“I want to give the biggest hug, thanks, and love in the world to Tracy Tyndall Pabst for her amazing gift to our family,” Blandford’s husband, TJ, posted on Facebook. “I will never be able to express my gratitude to her.”

Laura said simply: “Tracy gave me life. She gave me life back.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Would You Give a Kidney to a Facebook Friend? She Did.

Unless a kidney donor stepped forward soon, she would die a slow death.

Feb 23 2017 Read more
A student speaks at Be Me BU: Unscripted

‘Every time I tell my story, I get a little bit of myself back’: Butler Community Shares Stories of Triumph

BY Marc D. Allan MFA ’18

PUBLISHED ON Apr 30 2019

Butler University senior Marketing major Abby Smith has a tattoo on her shoulder that says “destroy what destroys you.” On Friday, April 26, in front of a room full of classmates and strangers, she shared the harrowing story behind the ink.

“For a whole year,” she said, “I let a boy control me. He wouldn’t let me cut my hair, wear certain clothes, hang out with certain friends, talk to other boys. And I couldn’t even go to my junior homecoming.”

About eight months into the relationship, the abuse turned physical. She came home with bruises on her arms that she had to hide from her parents. At 17, she broke up with him and suffered bouts of depression. By 18, she felt she was worthless – “a true waste of human space.”

But then she came to Butler, and decided to tell her story—to allow herself to be vulnerable.

“I was tired of letting a stupid boy from high school control the way I thought about myself,” she said. “I no longer felt the burden of hiding the biggest and most impactful part of my life. Not only did I grow in that moment, but those who chose to listen grew as well.”

Smith was telling the story again in the Shelton Auditorium as part of Be Me BU: Unscripted, a TED Talk-like program put on by College of Education Professor Catherine Pangan’s Perspectives in Leadership class.

The goal of the class is to teach leadership theories, styles, and skills, and to learn how leadership styles are applied and then practiced.

Telling the story is still “very raw,” Smith said afterward, “but for every time I tell my story, I feel like I get a little bit of myself back. So anytime I can tell my story, I look forward to the opportunity.”

Junior Entrepreneurship major Emily Fleming, who served as emcee, said students in the class suggested potential speakers for the event, and the class selected the participants. Speakers were selected because they have overcome adversity and inspired the Butler community.

“We wanted people in the Butler community to be able to share their stories unscripted,” Fleming says. “We’re very proud of what we put together.”

Seven students—some from the class, some not—a faculty member, and a staff member, shared stories of life-changing moments and challenges they overcame.

The topics ranged from dealing with obsessive-compulsive disorder, to racial discrimination, to living with DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) status in an uncertain time. Assistant Communications Sciences and Disorders Professor Tonya Bergeson-Dana talked about finding out that she was pregnant one day, then losing her husband, IndyCar driver Paul Dana, the next. Beloved C-Club employee “Miss” Denise Kimbrough talked about finding her home at Butler and providing a supportive environment for others.

Haley Sumner, a senior Communication Sciences and Disorders and Spanish double major, shared her story about being born three months prematurely, and how her grandparents took her in when her parents were unable to care for her. Grace Bowling, a senior Strategic Communications major, told of losing her mother to brain cancer, and how important it is to “embrace the changes that life throws at you.”

Then there was Lindsey Schuler.

A sophomore Health Sciences major from Fishers, she explained that  life can change in the blink of an eye. Schuler was severely injured in a tumbling accident in which she fell 5 feet, face first, to the ground. She couldn’t move.

Schuler went through two surgeries and three weeks in the intensive care unit before heading to the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. After months of therapy, she was able to rejoin her high school class and walk at graduation.

But there was more rehab to do, and she went back to Chicago to gain strength, endurance, and independent skills. She had to relearn how to climb stairs, use a pencil, tie a shoe, and drive. After five months there, and two more months in another neurological rehabilitation facility in Atlanta, she was able to come to Butler.

“I was terrified to enter a whole new community of people who had not known me prior to my injury,” she said. “I was so nervous that I’d be judged by my differences. But instead, this community has embraced me and welcomed me with open arms. If it had not been for my injury, I never would have come to Butler, I never would have found my passion for helping others, and most importantly, I never would have truly appreciated all I have been given.”

A student speaks at Be Me BU: Unscripted

‘Every time I tell my story, I get a little bit of myself back’: Butler Community Shares Stories of Triumph

Be Me BU: Unscripted is a TED Talk-like program put on by a Perspectives in Leadership class.

Apr 30 2019 Read more
Arts & CultureCampus

Creation & Creativity, Adam and Eve


PUBLISHED ON Feb 21 2018

"Creation & Creativity, Adam and Eve," an art exhibit featuring works inspired by the biblical text from Creation- Genesis 1-2:2, will be displayed on February 28 at 6:00 PM in the Christian Theological Seminary's Shelton Auditorium, 1000 West 42nd Street.

Admission is free and open to the public.

The Religion, Spirituality & the Arts exhibit will feature the works of local artists Becky Archibald, Emily Bennett, Ellie Brown, Anastasiya Combs, Linda Henke, Elizabeth Kenney, Brigid Manning-Hamilton, Bonnie Maurer, Tracy Mishkin, Mary Sexson, Jennifer Swim, and Karen Van De Walle.

Religion, Spirituality & the Arts is directed by Rabbi Sandy Sasso. The symposium is an initiative to bring people together from diverse artistic disciplines, practices and religious/spiritual perspectives for a sustained study and reflection on a Biblical text. Selected participants are part of a seminar that will engage the sacred text as they seek inspiration to create new work (music, poetry, visual art, dance, drama, narrative, liturgical art). These works will be shared in the seminar and in a final community exhibition.



(Artwork by Bonnie Maurer)

Arts & CultureCampus

Creation & Creativity, Adam and Eve

The artwork will be presented one night only, February 28.

Feb 21 2018 Read more
Brent Rockwood

Butler names new Vice President, Chief of Staff


PUBLISHED ON Oct 02 2019

INDIANAPOLIS—Brent Rockwood ‘00 has been named Vice President, Chief of Staff at Butler University, the University announced today. He will begin his duties November 4.

Serving as a member of the President’s Cabinet, Rockwood will be responsible for leading a range of initiatives intended to advance the University with internal and external stakeholders. He will represent Butler in the community, serve as a liaison across campus, and work with the Board of Trustees, President’s Office, and leadership team on a variety of significant University projects.

“I am extremely pleased to welcome Brent back to Butler as a key member of our leadership team,” Butler President James M. Danko says. “Brent’s passion for Butler and his wealth of leadership experience will serve as a great benefit to our institution. I look forward to his continued leadership and contributions as our University embarks on a momentous time and works to build even further on our successes.”

Rockwood will also oversee the University’s Marketing and Communications Division. Vice President for Strategy and Innovation Melissa Beckwith, who currently oversees Marketing and Communications, will now shift her full attention to the implementation of the University’s new strategic direction, as well as new initiatives and advances in innovation.

In his current role as Senior Vice President of Corporate, Community and Public Relations for Pacers Sports & Entertainment, Rockwood is responsible for strategies involving communications and external relationships for the Indiana Pacers, Indiana Fever, Fort Wayne Mad Ants, Pacers Gaming, Pacers Foundation, and operations of the Bankers Life Fieldhouse arena and its more than 500 annual events.

“I am ecstatic about and thankful for the opportunity to serve my alma mater in this new role,” Rockwood says. “I look forward to working with many talented colleagues, faculty, students, and partners to advance the University’s mission. Butler has a strong foundation with a bright future and I’m excited to help share it with the world.”

A graduate of Butler, Rockwood played on the Butler Athletic Hall of Fame basketball team in 1996-1997. He worked for Eli Lilly and Company in a variety of sales, brand, and marketing roles after graduation. In 2007, Rockwood earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and proceeded to serve as a director in the areas of communications, community partnerships, government affairs, and investor and media relations for Fortune 500 companies.

Rockwood serves on the Board of Directors for the Indianapolis Urban League, Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee, and the Pacers Foundation.


Media Contact:
Rachel Stern
Director of Strategic Communications
914-815-5656 (cell)

Brent Rockwood

Butler names new Vice President, Chief of Staff

Brent Rockwood to serve as a key liaison across campus and in the community

Oct 02 2019 Read more
Jordan Hall

McEvoy-Levy named Director of the Desmond Tutu Peace Lab

BY Marc Allan

PUBLISHED ON Sep 12 2018

The Desmond Tutu Center, a five-year joint partnership between Butler University and the Christian Theological Seminary created in 2013 to promote the legacy of the Archbishop, will be renamed the Desmond Tutu Peace Lab and will get a new director, Butler Professor of Political Science and Peace and Conflict Studies Siobhan McEvoy-Levy.

"Growing up in Northern Ireland during the Troubles, we were inspired by Desmond Tutu and the struggles of South Africans against apartheid," McEvoy-Levy said. "So it is a great honor to be named Director of the Desmond Tutu Peace Lab and to have the opportunity to further collaborate with Butler students and other colleagues and community partners in the cause of peace."

McEvoy-Levy will be supported by three Faculty Fellows: Chad Bauman, Butler Professor of Religion and Chair of the Department of Philosophy, Religion, and Classics; Terri Jett, Butler Associate Professor of Political Science and Peace and Conflict Studies and Special Assistant to the Provost for Diversity and Inclusivity; and Fait Muedini, Butler Associate Professor and Director of International Studies.

The Desmond Tutu Peace Lab will be dedicated to undergraduate research, activism, dialogue, and advocacy around peace and social justice issues broadly defined. The Lab continues work in the spirit of The Desmond Tutu Center by promoting peace, reconciliation, and global justice on campus and in the local community.

Student interns and a student "think tank" will work with faculty and local community partners to:

  • Convene roundtables and dialogues on ‘cultures of future peace’ themed around the arts, media, religion, politics, gender, race, science, business, and other topics.
  • Offer trainings in mediation, activism, interfaith engagement, and writing for social justice.
  • Study "sites of conscience" and how divided societies have constructive dialogues about the past.

“With this new initiative, we will provide a new generation of students with space to explore and develop their aspirations for nonviolent change," McEvoy-Levy said. "The Peace Lab will be a place for collaborations, recognizing that peace building is a dynamic and tension-filled process, and that inner peace, community violence prevention, reconciliation with our enemies or with our natural world, or advancing economic justice, are not achievable alone. The aim is to build on students’ already rich classroom, study abroad, and community-based learning experiences."


Media Contact:
Marc Allan

Jordan Hall

McEvoy-Levy named Director of the Desmond Tutu Peace Lab

Siobhan McEvoy-Levy is a professor of Political Science and Peace and Conflict Studies at Butler. 

Sep 12 2018 Read more

CUE Farm Gets a New Addition: A Mobile Greenhouse


PUBLISHED ON Oct 25 2016

Butler University’s Center for Urban Ecology Farm is the new home of the first fully automated, mobile greenhouse, an 8-foot-wide by 32-foot-long structure designed and built by Ball State University architecture students to enable the CUE Farm to start plants earlier in the season.

The $50,000 project was built with a grant from the Butler Innovation Fund. Public tours for the greenhouse will take place November 3 from 3:00–6:00 PM at the farm, which is located west of campus near the athletic fields. The event will occur during the last farm stand of the season. A week’s worth of produce will be offered as a raffle prize.

CUE Farm Mobile GreenhouseThe greenhouse was built to be mobile because the farm is in a floodplain, so a permanent structure was not an option. It will serve as a model for other urban farms, which often experience land access challenges that require mobility.

“A lot of urban farming happens in marginal areas that are challenged in different ways like floodplains,” said Travis Ryan, Chair of Butler’s Biology Department, which oversees the farm. “So the idea of making something that’s mobile that might be able to exist and support facilities in these areas is interesting.”

Ryan said when the decision was made to create a mobile greenhouse, Butler representatives approached Timothy Gray, Associate Professor of Architecture at Ball State. Gray and his students previously designed and built the CUE Farm’s mobile classroom, which is made from a shipping container.

Over two semesters, his students designed and built the structure, taking into account variables such as placement on the farm to get the best sunlight and shelving to house the optimum number of plants. Their design also includes ventilation, heating and cooling, heat-sensitive actuators that open and close windows, fans connected to a thermostat, and an irrigation system customizable to different times of the year and different plants.

“Every detail is really thought through,” Gray said. “That’s part of the learning process for the students. We had to pay attention to all the details to make sure it functions and also find architecture in all those moments.”

Ryan said he is impressed with the students’ work.

“Tim Gray said he really stepped back and let them work,” he said. “They cut the pieces, they welded it, they put it all together. There are some really nice touches to what they’ve done.”

Gray said what his students designed and built is a prototype. There has already been interest from other communities that found the design at One of the calls he received was from Liverpool, England.

“They’re working with the homeless population to develop these urban farming sites around Liverpool, and they’re looking for facilities that can support multiple farms,” he said. “So they’re looking for a greenhouse that can be moved between the different farming sites they’re developing. I thought was an interesting application as well.”

The greenhouse is not only functional, but it caught the attention of the American Institute of Architects. Gray and his students won a prestigious 2016 American Institute of Architects Indiana Design Award for the mobile greenhouse.

Opportunities to partner with Butler University in support of the Center for Urban Ecology, the Farm, and its community programs are available. To learn more, please contact the Office of Corporate and Foundation Relations at

Media contact:
Marc Allan


CUE Farm Gets a New Addition: A Mobile Greenhouse

The greenhouse was built to be mobile because the farm is in a floodplain.

Oct 25 2016 Read more

Butler to Offer 16 Arts and Music Camps This Summer


PUBLISHED ON Mar 27 2017

In the words of William Shakespeare, “We know what we are, but know not what we may be.” And with that in mind, the Butler Community Arts School will be offering Theatre Camp 2: Focus on Shakespeare for the first time this summer for students in grades 9-12.

The camp—one of 16 arts- and music-related camps being offered on the Butler University campus this summer—will meet July 9-14. For more information on this and all the summer camp offerings, visit

Butler Community Arts School“The focus on Shakespeare is a niche we believe nobody else is serving in Indianapolis, and we have the expertise on our faculty to offer a high-quality experience in Shakespeare,” said Karen Thickstun, Director of the Butler Community Arts School, which provides high-quality, affordable instruction in music, theatre, and dance to Indianapolis and the surrounding area. “This is high school only, so it gives the more serious high school theatre campers a high-quality experience with their own age.”

Butler Community Arts School camps are taught by Butler faculty and Butler students. Camps for students ages 12 and up have both residential and commuter options, and need-based scholarships are available.

“We encourage anybody who’s worried about the finances to fill out the scholarship form,” Thickstun said. “We try to serve as many as we can with the grant funding we get for the summer. Especially for commuters, we’ve been able to reduce the costs as much as 60-70 percent.”

Deadlines to register for all camps except Ballet Summer Intensive is May 1. The deadline for Ballet Summer Intensive was March 15, but late applications will be accepted for as long as there is space.

The Shakespeare camp is the second theatre camp the Butler Community Arts School (BCAS) will offer this summer. Other camps are:

Percussion Camp, ages 12-18 (June 11-15)

Bass Camp, ages 12-21 (June 11-16)

Snare and Tenor Camp, ages 12-21 (June 16-18)

String Scholars Camp, ages 12-18 (June 18-22)

Piano Camp 1, ages 12-18 (June 18-23)

Theatre Camp 1, ages 12-18 (June 18-23)

Jazz Camp, ages 12-18 (July 9-14)

Voice Camp, ages 15-18 (July 16-21)

Ballet Summer Intensive, ages 13-18 (July 9-29)

Brass Camp, ages 12-18 (July 16-20)

Woodwind Camp, ages 12-18 (June 25-29)

Ages 7-11 only:

Piano Camp 2 (9:00 AM to 12:30 PM daily, June 26-30)

Strings Camp (9:00 AM to 12:30 PM daily, July 17-21)

Arts Camp 1 and 2 (1:30-to 5:00 PM daily, June 26-30 and July 17-21)


Big Band Workshop (evenings, June 4-9)

Thickstun said the camps are an opportunity for students to get a campus experience, whether they live at Butler during the week or commute.

“They’re here on campus all day, and Butler students play a large part in the instruction of each camp,” she said. “Each has a faculty artist director, but many have Butler students running sectionals and small group instruction.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler to Offer 16 Arts and Music Camps This Summer

The Butler Community Arts School will be offering Theatre Camp 2: Focus on Shakespeare for the first time this summer for students in grades 9-12.

Mar 27 2017 Read more

Butler to Select a New Fraternity


PUBLISHED ON Feb 13 2017

Three Greek organizations interested in opening a chapter at Butler will present their proposals to the University community February 16–23, with a decision due by early March.

Butler CampusBeta Theta Pi will present on February 16 from 4:15–5:15 PM in Jordan Hall, Room 141.

Pi Kappa Alpha will follow on February 20 from 5:30–6:30 PM in Jordan Hall, Room 141.

Theta Chi will follow on February 23 from 4:00–5:00 PM in Jordan Hall, Room 141.

Beta Theta Pi was founded in 1839 at Miami (Ohio) University and has 137 chapters and 26 colonies in the United States and Canada.

Pi Kappa Alpha was founded in 1868 at the University of Virginia and has a total of more than 220 chapters and colonies across the United States and Canada.

Theta Chi was founded in 1856 at Norwich University in Norwich, Vermont. It has 235 chapters.

Anne Flaherty, Interim Vice President for Student Affairs, and Becky Druetzler, Director of Greek Life, said the University is committed to working with the organization selected to obtain housing. Butler requires that any organization invited to establish a chapter provides housing within 2–4 years.

The selection process began in January 2016 when the University contacted 25 national fraternities that had previously expressed interest in Butler's fraternity and sorority community.

A committee of staff, students, alumni, and faculty reviewed eight extensive proposals and recommended the three finalists. A University trustee will be joining the committee for consideration of the three finalists. The committee will makes its recommendation to the President.

The last time a chapter was established as a new initiative and not a recolonization was Phi Kappa Psi in 1971. Phi Delta Theta was recolonized in 2008–2009.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler to Select a New Fraternity

Three Greek organizations interested in opening a chapter at Butler will present their proposals to the University community.

Feb 13 2017 Read more
oncfchb announcement

Butler Unveils New Business Center

Marc D. Allan

from Fall 2017

In May, Butler announced a $5 million financial commitment from Old National Bank to create the Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business, which will provide privately owned businesses with training, education, mentoring, and networking opportunities to help them succeed.

The Center, located in Butler’s Andre B. Lacy School of Business, will place special emphasis on serving the unique needs of this core segment of the economy. The Center will advance the Lacy School of Business’s commitment to experiential education by extending the definition of the Butler student to include the individuals at the businesses that they have the opportunity to work with.

“We are grateful not only for the tremendous financial contribution, but for the partnership with Old National Bank (ONB),” said Stephen Standifird, Dean of the Lacy School of Business. “ONB has been, and continues to be, a strong advocate for supporting closely held businesses.”

The Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business will initially concentrate on two core areas: helping organizations understand how to manage transition strategies, a challenge that is unique to closely held businesses; and identifying stage-appropriate advisors who can help businesses grow in areas such as accounting, legal, risk, and insurance. 

The Center’s leadership team will design its initial programming. The team consists of Administrative Director Dennis Wimer; Academic Director and longtime Butler Business Professor Dick Fetter; and Dean Standifird. Much of the ongoing programming of the Center will be determined by client feedback and consultation with appropriate experts. If you want to learn more about how you or your business could be involved in this organization at Butler, connect with Wimer at

Wimer and colleague Jennifer Dewitt spent the summer meeting with members of the Indiana Business community as well as attending The Alliance Conference, an organization consisting of leaders of family and closely held business centers across North America. “The first step is to understand our customers’ needs and this summer has helped us identify the critical topics that drive organizational growth and value,” Wimer said. “We have started to build relationships with key partners that we know our members will be able to count on.”

ONB Chief Credit Officer Steve McGlothlin ’87 will chair the Center’s Advisory Board. Lacy School of Business Senior Advisor Andre Lacy will serve on the board as well as Elaine Bedel MBA ’79, President of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation; Bill Neale, Senior Partner Krieg Devault LLP; and JP Engelbrecht, CEO South Central Inc. Additional board members who bring a diverse perspective on today’s critical business issues will be added.

“Old National is thrilled to partner with Butler University to help advance the success of privately owned businesses throughout our great state,” Old National Chairman and CEO Bob Jones said. “As the largest bank headquartered in Indiana, Old National is deeply committed to ensuring that Hoosier businesses get the training, education, and other resources they need to grow and thrive.”

oncfchb announcement

Butler Unveils New Business Center

In May, Butler announced a $5 million financial commitment from Old National Bank to create the Old National Bank Center for Closely Held Business, which will provide privately owned businesses with training, education, mentoring, and networking opportunities to help them succeed.

by Marc D. Allan

from Fall 2017

Read more

Brett McNeal ’08 Gets a Dose of Reality


PUBLISHED ON Apr 03 2017

The court of public opinion is about to get tested by a new TV show, and a couple of Butler alumni will be part of the proceedings.

Brett McNeal ’08 and his fiancé Darvin Lewis will appear on the April 21 episode of You the Jury as plaintiffs in a case pitting them against the owner of a northern Indiana pizza restaurant who refused to serve gay patrons. Their friend Amanda DiMaio Livarchik ’08 will be a witness for their side.
Brett McNeal '08 and Darvin Lewis will be on the new Fox series "You the Jury."

"Brett and I always joked over the years that our lives would make for great reality TV,” Livarchik said. “Little did we know we would one day end up on Fox."

Fox News personality and former daytime judge Jeanine Pirro is host of the show, which features real civil court cases being argued by recognizable attorneys, with viewers voting on the verdict live as the show airs. Each episode focuses on a case concerning a current hot-button issue, such as online trolling, the limits of free speech, and the constitutional clash of gay rights with religious freedom.

“The experience was totally and utterly surreal,” McNeal said. “When we had intermission, we were escorted back to the dressing room and I just had to lay on the couch, asking myself, 'What did we sign up for?' But I always kept in the back of my mind that we were fighting for a cause.”

McNeal and Lewis said they were chosen because “they wanted to cast a nice, loving, gay couple in Indiana going against the guy from up north.”

The crew came into town early March 2016 and “took over our house,” Lewis said. “They interviewed our friends and family. Then we were informed that we would be going to L.A. for the final taping. In the beginning, we didn’t think it would be more than a People's Court kind of thing. However, the more we spoke to the producers, the bigger it got. Suddenly, we were told that there would be a live audience.”

McNeal, who works in renewals for a local company, said he and Lewis will be watching the outcome at a public viewing party at Tini, a martini bar on Massachusetts Avenue in Indianapolis.

“We are contractually obligated not to publicly discuss the details of the episode until it has been announced,” McNeal said. “But we hope to drum up support for both the big vote on the episode and the ongoing LGBT cause.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Brett McNeal ’08 Gets a Dose of Reality

The court of public opinion is about to get tested by a new TV show, and a couple of Butler alumni will be part of the proceedings.

Apr 03 2017 Read more

Ways to Get Around

If you are a student from out-of-state, or maybe just from down the street, you might be wondering how on Earth are you going to get around the city?

From city bikes to electric blue cars it’s easy to get from A to B in Indy, even if you don’t have your own car. Here are some great transportation options in the city if you don't have your own car or bike...or even if you do.



BlueIndy is a 100% electric car-sharing service and has about 200 charging stations in the Indianapolis region. These little cars are easy to use and doesn’t take a toll on your wallet.

Students get a free yearly membership, which means it would cost a Bulldog just 15 cents a minutes to rent a BlueCar! If you want to learn more or sign up for a membership click on the link provided below.

Sign up for your free BlueIndy membership today with discount code GODAWGS. 



Butler has partnered with Uber, an on-demand private driving app, to offer a safe, alternative transportation option to and from campus. New users to Uber can use promo code BUTLER101 to receive $20 off their first ride. Need information on how to use Uber? It's simple:

  • Use the iPhone or Android app, or visit to request a ride.
  • Sit back and relax. Uber will text you when the vehicle arrives.
  • When your trip ends, Uber will auto-charge your credit card and email you a receipt.
  • Fare split rides with friends for an even more cost-effective way to get around!


Indy Go

IndyGo can get you there. They operate 31 bus routes throughout Indianapolis, providing nearly 10 million passenger trips a year. Along with the opening of the Julia M. Carson Transit Center in downtown Indianapolis two IndyGo routes (18 & 28) were modified to serve the Butler Campus directly with convenient stops along Sunset Avenue. 


IndyGo S-passes (1 month) are available In the PuLSE office for $30

  • Use Google Maps to plan your trip with the IndyGo trip-planner.
  • IndyGo now has Real-time arrival information.
  • Visit for more information.


Coming soon! IndyGo Red Line

Traveling within a few blocks of campus, the Red Line is a bus system that will “run from Broad Ripple through downtown Indy to the University of Indianapolis.” The route will come within a quarter mile of more than 50,000 residents. Throughout most of the day, buses will arrive every ten minutes, and the Red Line will operate for 20 hours each day, 7 days a week.


City Bikes

Similar to BlueIndy, Indiana Pacer Bikeshare is a great way to explore the city at a low cost. Indiana Pacer Bikeshare has about 20 stations around the Indianapolis Cultural Trail, and is a great option if you want to zip around downtown on a sunny day.

Pacer Bikeshare

Trip and Blue Indy
Student LifeCampus

Ways to Get Around

It’s easy to get from A to B in Indy!


Butler Joins Lincoln Park Zoo in Wildlife Study


PUBLISHED ON Feb 25 2016

Butler University’s Center for Urban Ecology will place 48 motion-sensitive cameras at locations in Indianapolis, Westfield, Zionsville, and Carmel for four weeks every quarter beginning in April to study urban wildlife.

The Indy Wildlife Watch project is being done in conjunction with the Lincoln Park Zoo Urban Wildlife Institute in Chicago and the University of Wisconsin-Madison to see how central Indiana wildlife compares with theirs. Researchers also will be looking to see how the habitat compares in different neighborhoods.

12687783_601770739970468_6472042605984240961_nFor the past five years, the Urban Wildlife Institute has been undertaking a groundbreaking study of Chicago’s urban ecosystem, using camera traps and acoustic monitors to track the behavior of bats, birds, coyotes and even humans. The pictures can be seen at

“The Urban Wildlife Information Network and these new camera-trap sites will provide a wealth of knowledge about not only wildlife but the ecosystem as a whole,” Lincoln Park Zoo Urban Wildlife Institute Director Seth Magle said. “We’re grateful to the University of Wisconsin and Butler University for this vital support, which will help everyone better understand wildlife and, subsequently, mitigate conflict between humans and animals.”

The cameras are held in metal boxes to shield them from the elements and camouflaged so they’re not an eyesore on the landscape. They are strapped around the trunk of a tree and secure with a cable and a lock. The cameras are pointed at another tree 10-20 feet away where a scented lure is attached. When animals stop to investigate the lure, they trip the motion sensor in the camera.

The cameras are capable of taking a picture every 30 seconds. The pictures are stored on memory cards that will be collected and replaced every two weeks.

In January, Butler’s Center for Urban Ecology tested about 18 cameras. Biology Professor Travis Ryan said the best pictures so far have come from the area around the Monon Center in Carmel, where deer, foxes, coyotes, squirrels, and rabbits triggered the camera.

A sampling of those pictures is now available on Twitter (@indywildwatch) and Facebook (Indy Wildlife Watch). Beginning in 2017, all the pictures from central Indiana sites will be posted on a website for the public to view and help identify the contents of the photos.

Butler students will be actively involved in managing the images and the cameras, and some area elementary and high schools also may participate, Ryan said. Butler students will be introduced to the project as part of an Introduction to Ecology and Evolutionary Biology class.

“We envision students playing an important role in the field and when we get back with the data,” Ryan said.

Zoo officials approached Butler Biology Professor Carmen Salsbury about participating.

“The reason we reached out to Carmen and Travis and others is because to us, the next step is to say how many of the patterns that we see are specific to individual cities and how many are universal,” Magle said. “If we can identify universal patterns in urban wildlife, then that’s incredibly powerful for policy, for planning, for green infrastructure, for all sorts of things.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler Athletic Hall of Fame Inducts Jack Krebs Again and Again and Again and Again and Again


PUBLISHED ON Jul 22 2016

Jack Krebs ’63 came to Butler in 1958 with no fanfare. At 6-foot-1 and 155 pounds, he was talented enough to play quarterback at Shelbyville High School, but not big or strong enough to be recruited by Butler.

He chose Butler anyway, and walked on to the football, basketball, and track teams.

Jack KrebsAnd then this happened: The football teams Krebs played on finished with a combined record of 34-2. The basketball team compiled a winning record every year, and in 1962 made the NCAA tournament. And Krebs made it to two NCAA national track meets, placing eighth in his junior year for the long jump and eighth in his senior year for the triple jump.

He may have been unheralded then, but on October 1, when the 1961 men’s track and field team is inducted into the Butler Athletic Hall of Fame, Krebs will become the hall’s first athlete to be inducted five times. Only Tony Hinkle (six) has more.

“Tony Hinkle would be rolling over in his grave,” Krebs, 76, said, laughing. “But it was just a great time to be here. It was really fun. We had terrific teams in all the sports.”

Krebs was inducted into the Hall of Fame as an individual in 1997 and as part of the 1959 and 1961 football teams (both undefeated, and both inducted in 2004) and the 1962 basketball team (inducted in 2007).

He said his main contribution to the basketball team was guarding Dick Haslam and Gerry Williams during practices. (“I think I helped make them better players because it wasn’t easy for them in practice.”) As for football, when Krebs arrived at Butler, the team had eight athletes who’d played quarterback in high school, so he wound up as an end. “And if I didn’t hit somebody first, I was going to get hurt.”

Krebs memories of those times are all fond ones. He recalled Hinkle coming into the locker room clapping and singing “The Butler War Song.” “He’d get tears in his eyes and everything. Everyone waited for that before they got dressed.” And when Hinkle had time off from coaching baseball, he was down at the track meets in his shorts and baseball cleats.

Krebs also remembered that Hinkle would not give him a scholarship. “But he gave me tuition the last year, which was $250. I was working at the time. My family had an insurance business by the fairgrounds on 38th Street. I worked there in the mornings, went to basketball practice in the afternoon, and went to school at night. I went in every semester asking him for money. He’d say, ‘Kid, your family can take care of you.’”

Hinkle called almost everyone “kid” or by the name of their hometown. Some years later, after Hinkle retired, Krebs ran into him at a golf tournament.

“He said, ‘Hi, Jack,’” Krebs recalled. “First time he ever called me that. It was a big surprise that he even knew names, as many kids as he coached.”

Track was where Krebs excelled—and had the most fun. The coach, Galvin Walker, “was a character,” Krebs said. “He’d give everybody a push toward something, then it was a do-it-yourself type thing.”

The 1961 men’s track and field team won the Indiana Collegiate Conference championship. Throughout the season, the team set new school records in the pole vault, discus, triple jump, and half-mile relay. The Bulldogs tied for first at the eighth Wabash Relays, which included 10 teams, won a dual meet with Indiana State, and won triangular meets with DePauw and Memphis State, and Indiana Central and St. Joseph’s, respectively.

In 1963, Krebs’s 47-foot, one-half-inch leap in the triple jump set a conference record that earned him the Scott Ham Award, which is given annually to the team's outstanding track athlete.
Jack Krebs is third from the left in the middle row.

Off the field, Krebs studied business and accounting at Butler. After graduation, he worked for the accounting firm Katz (now Katz, Sapper & Miller) for 10 years doing auditing work, sold clothes at a Roderick St. John’s store for a short time, and then found a home as the accountant for Gene Beltz Shadeland Dodge, where he worked for 37 years till he retired.

Krebs and his wife, Betty, who’ve been together for 54 years and married for 40, take every opportunity to visit campus—sometimes with memorable results.

Betty Krebs said that between eighth grade and freshman year of high school, Jack grew 11 inches and lost his hair. He faced unmerciful taunts from fans of opposing teams. People would spit on him at ballgames. They threw water on him and called him baldy.

But a few years ago at a Butler basketball game, something special happened.

As Betty tells it: “This guy came up and said, ‘Are you Jack Krebs? I just want to tell you—you’re my hero. I watched you play basketball at Hinkle, and you’re the reason I came to Butler—because I knew people would treat me right with my bald head.’

“That was so neat,” she said, “for him to come over and say that to Jack.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler Athletic Hall of Fame Inducts Jack Krebs Again and Again and Again and Again and Again

He may have been unheralded then, but on October 1, when the 1961 men’s track and field team is inducted into the Butler Athletic Hall of Fame, Krebs will become the hall’s first athlete to be inducted five times.

Jul 22 2016 Read more

It was out with the shovels and in with the Sharpies at the beam-signing ceremony in early May to dedicate the construction of a new 647-bed student residence hall to replace the old Schwitzer Hall at 750 W. Hampton Drive.

Instead of a traditional groundbreaking ceremony, students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends of the University signed a beam that will be used in the construction of the four-story facility. 

The new housing, built in partnership with American Campus Communities (ACC) and open in fall 2018, will feature suite-style living units, with two double-occupancy rooms linked by a shared lavatory. Amenities will include gaming alcoves, study rooms, a fitness room, an interior bike room, and a large meeting room that supports the residents, student organizations, Greek chapters, and campus programming.

“The addition of this new facility is a critical step toward advancing Butler’s educational mission through superior campus amenities, and the ultimate realization of Butler’s 2020 Vision as an innovative national leader in undergraduate residential education,” Butler President James Danko said. “By the time this new housing opens, we will have added almost 1,300 new beds to campus in two years and given prospective students yet another reason to choose Butler.”


Former Congressmen Open 2017–2018 Diversity Lecture Series


PUBLISHED ON Oct 12 2017

Two of Indiana’s most prominent and respected political leaders, former U.S. Senator Richard Lugar and former U.S. Representative Lee Hamilton, will sit down for a discussion with former Lieutenant Governor and current Ivy Tech Community College President Sue Ellspermann at 6:00 PM Monday, November 13, in Clowes Memorial Hall as part of Butler University’s Celebration of Diversity Distinguished Lecture Series.

A Conversation with Senator Richard Lugar and Representative Lee Hamilton, co-presented by Ivy Tech Community College, is free and open to the public, but tickets are required. They will be available beginning Friday, October 19, at 10:00 AM at the Clowes Hall box office and through

At a time when the country seems politically polarized and incapable of engaging in civil discourse, Lugar and Hamilton will talk about ways to bring us together.

Richard LugarLugar is the longest-serving member of Congress in Indiana history (1976–2012). He currently is  President of The Lugar Center, a non-profit organization focusing on global food security, WMD nonproliferation, aid effectiveness, and bipartisan governance. He serves as a Professor of Practice and Distinguished Scholar at the School of Global and International Studies at Indiana University and is distinguished faculty member in the Department of History and Political Science at the University of Indianapolis, where he leads the Richard G. Lugar Symposium for Tomorrow’s Leaders.

Hamilton, who served in Congress for 34 years (1965–1999), is Director of the Indiana University Center on Congress, a non-partisan educational Lee Hamiltoninstitution seeking to improve the public’s understanding of Congress and to inspire young people and adults to take an active part in revitalizing representative government in America. Located on the IU Bloomington campus, the Center offers an extensive array of civic education resources and activities aimed at fostering an informed electorate that understands our system of government and participates in civic life.

Sue EllspermannEllspermann has more than 30 years of experience in higher education, economic and workforce development, and public service. She was selected to serve as President of Ivy Tech Community College and began her tenure in May 2016. She is the ninth individual to hold the position and first female president for the college. Ellspermann served as Indiana’s 50th Lieutenant Governor from 2013 until March 2016.




Media contact:
Marc Allan



Former Congressmen Open 2017–2018 Diversity Lecture Series

At a time when the country seems politically polarized and incapable of engaging in civil discourse, Lugar and Hamilton will talk about ways to bring us together.

Oct 12 2017 Read more

Junior Emilie Turner Earns Spot In Fulbright Summer Institute


PUBLISHED ON May 10 2016

Junior Political Science/International Studies major Emilie Turner likes to learn about different cultures, and this summer she’ll get a chance to do just that as a participant in the prestigious Fulbright Summer Institute in Wales.

Emilie TurnerTurner, who’s from Fishers, Indiana, will spend June 25 to August 6 at three internationally renowned Welsh universities, Cardiff University, Bangor University, and Aberystwyth University, focusing on the theme of contemporary Wales: industry, politics, culture, and change. She also will explore the geography, culture, heritage, and history of Wales by visiting museums, galleries, parks, castles, and islands.

“It’s an exciting program because not only will we be taking classes, but they’ll be incorporating historical sites and landmarks into the classes,” she said. “So we’ll be able to go explore the history and geography of Wales at the same time.”

The US-UK Fulbright Commission selects participants through a rigorous application and interview process. In making these awards the Commission looks not only for academic excellence but a focused application, a range of extracurricular and community activities, demonstrated ambassadorial skills, a desire to further the Fulbright Program and a plan to give back to the recipient’s home country upon returning.

The Commission is part of the Fulbright program conceived by Senator J William Fulbright in the aftermath of World War II to promote leadership, learning and empathy between nations through educational exchange. Award recipients and summer program participants will be the future leaders for tomorrow and support the ‘special relationship’ between the United States and United Kingdom.

Fulbright Summer Institutes cover all participant costs. In addition, Fulbright summer participants receive a distinctive support and cultural education program including visa processing, a comprehensive pre-departure orientation, enrichment opportunities in country, a re-entry session and opportunity to join its alumni networks.

Turner, who participants in service projects through the Intercollegiate YMCA and Blue Key Honor Society, plans to go to law school and possibly go into international law.

“I love to learn more about people and how to understand different cultures as it relates directly to international relationships,” Turner said. “I’m also excited to teach others about our culture, politics, economic viewpoints, and social environment.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Junior Emilie Turner Earns Spot In Fulbright Summer Institute

“It’s an exciting program because not only will we be taking classes, but they’ll be incorporating historical sites and landmarks into the classes.”

May 10 2016 Read more

Future Farmers Get a Look at Butler's Campus Farm


PUBLISHED ON Oct 21 2016

On a brisk fall Indiana Friday morning, 49 members of FFA (Future Farmers of America) got a look at a model for the future of urban agriculture.

The FFA members, who came from as far away as Massachusetts and Connecticut, Arizona and Washington state to attend the annual FFA convention in Indianapolis, took a tour of the CUE Farm at Butler to see how the University is approaching sustainable, environmentally responsible urban farming.
Butler University CUE farm hosts FFA convention attendees October 21, 2016.

“Small-scale sustainable agriculture can be a part of our food system,” Farm Manager Tim Dorsey told the group, showing them around the one-acre parcel west of campus where approximately 75 different kinds of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and plants are grown. “People want to start connecting to the places where their food is grown.”

The produce grown on the farm is sold locally through a CSA group (Community Supported Agriculture), at a weekly farmstand, and to 6-10 local restaurants and grocery stores.

The farm also provides students with educational opportunities.

“Butler doesn’t have an agriculture major or degree,” Center for Urban Ecology Director Julia Angstmann told the group. “But students can participate in the environmental, social and business component of the operation.”

Butler students can take a class called Cultivating Well Being, where they work on the farm. Biology, Communications, and Business classes, as well as interns, also participate in farm activities.

For many of the FFA visitors, the Butler farm is a postage stamp of land compared with where they live. Katherine Carpenter—Miss Washington Teen Agriculture—lives on roughly 150 acres where they grow oats, timothy, alfalfa, grass, pasture mix and other kinds of hay that thrive in Washington State.

She wanted to see the farm at least in part because “it’s at a college and we’re all in high school and looking at colleges.” She said she liked what she saw.

“It’s really cool,” she said. “I enjoyed looking at it and listening to the talk. The way they work with the bees and things like that was interesting.”

Sydney Riebold, also from Deer Park, Washington, whose family raises steer, hogs, pigs, and sheep on their farm, said the campus farm is “not my thing, but I think it was good and it was interesting.”

After the tour, Angstmann polled the group and found that only one member had visited an urban farm prior to this tour and two had previously seen a sustainable agriculture project.

“I think,” she said, “it may have been an eye-opening experience for many of the attendees.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Future Farmers Get a Look at Butler's Campus Farm

On a brisk fall Indiana Friday morning, 49 members of FFA (Future Farmers of America) got a look at a model for the future of urban agriculture.

Oct 21 2016 Read more
meg haggerty

Meg Haggerty moved around frequently as a kid.

Being the daughter of an Air Force officer meant Haggerty and the rest of her family didn’t stay in one place for too long. It also meant that, at a very young age, she learned how to quickly build relationships and fully immerse herself into a community—two traits that have allowed her to make lifelong friends in every place she’s lived. 

“Meg is a true inspiration,” Addie Barret ’17 said of Haggerty, who is the Staff Advisor for Barret’s sorority, Alpha Chi Omega—the same one Haggerty was a member of when she attended Butler as an undergraduate. 

From co-advising the Student Government Association’s (SGA) Marketing and Communications Board, and coordinating student events, like Winter and Spring Commencement and the Top 100 Most Outstanding Student Recognition Program, to working with interns, Haggerty makes it her mission to be a mentor to Butler students like her mentors were to her. She makes herself available 24/7 and she tells students, “Any aspect of your life you want to invite me into, I’ll invite you into mine as well.”

“She is there for students in every aspect: academic, personal, and professional,” Barret continued. “She is always asking questions about others and wanting to know how we are doing. Every memory I have of her consists of that same incredible attitude.” 

Levester Johnson, Vice President for Student Affairs for Illinois State University, worked with Haggerty closely as Butler’s former Vice President for Student Affairs. He also knew Haggerty during her undergraduate years and explained that she is Butler through and through—epitomizing Butler via its mission and values. 

“Meg has a youthful flair about herself when she advises,” he said. “She doesn’t see her job as a nine-to-five and she understands the importance of working with students hand-in-hand to achieve their dreams.” 

Johnson believes it’s Haggerty’s quality of going the extra mile that separates her from other administrative professionals. While interviewing Haggerty, this characteristic was revealed when she commented, “just say yes.” She added that if people are willing to say yes and step outside their comfort zones, they will have opportunities they never could have imagined. 

When she graduated from Butler in 2004, Haggerty’s next opportunity was at Florida State University (FSU) where she would earn a Master of Science in Higher Education Student Affairs. While attending FSU, and prior to coming back to Butler, she worked in the FSU College of Education coordinating programming and events for her master’s cohort. She remembers feeling the graduate assistantship was not what she pictured herself doing long term. 

“My passion, and my love, was still working with undergraduate students,” Haggerty explained. She looked for positions at various universities, but Haggerty says her “heart yearned for Butler.”

With a stroke of luck and good timing, Haggerty’s mentor and friend, Caroline Huck-Watson, reached out to her about a position in Butler’s Programs for Leadership and Service Education (PuLSE) Office. As an undergraduate, Haggerty had met Huck-Watson through the Ambassadors of Change (AOC) Program as a team builder and as a student staff member of the Volunteer Center. Huck-Watson had been an influence in her life at Butler and a significant inspiration to pursue Higher Education Student Affairs as a profession. By summer of 2006, Haggerty was back at Butler as an Assistant Director co-coordinating Welcome Week and Orientation programs as well as advising the Program Board of SGA with committees like films, the speaker’s bureau, Out and About in Indy, and events like Homecoming and Spring Sports Spectacular. 

Since then, Haggerty has been a key player in student event programming for Butler. She has an innate ability to connect with each student she meets, and because of that, over the past 10 years she’s been able to build some amazing relationships with students—meeting them during their first or second year, and staying in touch with them during life’s biggest milestones like marriage and children. To her, it’s amazing that she gets to create and be a part of those relationships. 

These relationships are shown through students like Emma Edick ’17, who remembers meeting Haggerty her first year on campus for a class project. 

“Meg has been such a large part of my Butler experience,” Edick said. “She pays attention to what students on campus are doing, what they are working on, and what they are excited about.”

Edick continued by explaining that even if the two of them pass by one another at Starbucks, Haggerty always puts her work aside to sincerely ask the question: “How are you?” 

“I never expected I would be here as a student and as a staff member for as long as I have, but it’s because of the people. People are the most important part of the work that I do—and I don’t think I could have done the work that I’ve done without the people in my life.” 

Summer in Panama

By Marc Allan, MFA '18

The phrase "once-in-a-lifetime experience" comes up in pretty much every conversation you have with Butler biology students about their two-week class this summer in Panama.

A day that started by walking the Pipeline Road, where over 1,000 species of birds can be observed at one time or another, and ended watching researchers collecting bats, observing their facial anatomy, and listening to the sounds they make as they attempt to echolocate. Getting to take a crane ride more than 130 feet in the air to see the tops of the forest. Seeing howler monkeys and sloths up close. Meeting the researchers on Barro Colorado Island, the most intensively studied tropical forest, where they examine an array of plant and animal diversity. Snorkeling, and coming face to face with a jellyfish and nurse shark. And so much more.

"I've been bragging about it ever since I've been back," said Katelyn Glaenzer, a senior from St. Louis majoring in Biology and minoring in Chemistry and Classics. "It's hard to pick out what the coolest thing about it was because everything was so cool."

Glaenzer was among the 11 students (10 Biology majors and one Spanish major who served as an interpreter) who took the trip in late May and early June with Biology Professors Travis Ryan and Phil Villani for their Terrestrial Tropical Biology class. Butler offers the course every two years to give students the opportunity to see for themselves what others may only read about.

"Our goal is to put the class in front of as many different people doing as much different things in tropical ecology as possible," Biology Professor Travis Ryan said. "So they're not just hearing it from me and Phil Villani – they're hearing it firsthand from people doing the research."

The course is heavily subsidized through an endowment from Frank Levinson '75, part of a $5 million gift to the sciences in 2007 that also enabled the University to buy the Big Dawg supercomputer and make upgrades to the Holcomb Observatory telescope. Ryan said Levinson's endowment covers more than half the course and also pays for two Butler interns to spend the summer interning at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama.

One of every three Butler interns who works there becomes an author on a paper they helped collect data on, and most have their own independent project they're working on while they're interning, Ryan said.

Evynn Davis, a senior from Downers Grove, Illinois, majoring in Biology, with minors in French, Chemistry and Environmental Studies, said her favorite part of the trip was visiting Barro Colorado Island, the home of so many different research projects.

"We walked around and ran into people and their projects and learned about the island and its dynamics," she said. "That experience of getting to see research that we've heard of or research that we have studied in action was really awesome."

Cindy Cifuentes, a senior Biology and Environmental Studies Major from Crawfordsville, Indiana, said her favorite experience in Panama was meeting with people in Rachel Page’s bat lab and getting to see firsthand how they catch their bats for their research.

"I learned so much about bats that night and what type of research they are doing with them," she said. "It sparked an unknown interest and admiration I have for them. It was something I could see myself doing in the future, which got me excited."


Photos by Evynn Davis and Katelyn Glaenzer

Student LifeCampus

Summer in Panama

10 Butler biology students spent two weeks in Panama for a once-in-a-lifetime class. 

Summer in Panama

By Marc Allan, MFA '18

Zotec Partners Continues Sponsorship With Butler Athletics


PUBLISHED ON Aug 08 2017

Zotec Partners announced on August 14 that it will continue a multi-year sponsorship agreement with Butler University’s Athletics Department that allows the company's logo to be displayed alongside the University’s logo on the Hinkle Fieldhouse court.
Scott Law

T. Scott Law, President and CEO of Zotec Partners, notes that the sponsorship, which began in 2011, means much more than just advertising the Zotec Partners brand.

“To us, it is a symbol of our Butler pride and support for the Indianapolis community at large, which is home to 350 Zotec employees,” he said.

As a former student-athlete, Law believes it is important to support the University and its sports teams that will directly benefit from the sponsorship commitment. “I am delighted we can honor the drive, dedication, and teamwork of Butler’s student-athletes,” he adds. “The University’s students, alumni, faculty, and staff are an important part of our company’s history and future, and it is our privilege to support them.”

For more than eight decades, Hinkle Fieldhouse has upheld a reputation as one of the nation’s great sports arenas. The classic facility was constructed in 1928 and has withstood the test of time, maintaining the splendor, character, and atmosphere that made it one of the nation’s most famous basketball arenas in a state that is practically synonymous with the sport. Today, Butler men’s basketball, women’s basketball, and volleyball teams play their home games at Hinkle.

“We are thrilled to continue our partnership with Zotec. Scott Law knows that putting together a great team—as he has at Zotec—takes commitment and support from many participants,” said Athletic Director Barry Collier. “Zotec’s continued, unwavering support greatly benefits our student-athletes, Butler University, and the Indianapolis community.”

In addition to supporting Butler Athletics, Zotec has a long relationship with the Lacy School of Business through the Zotec Business Competition, a competition for sophomore business students involved in the Real Business Experience (RBE) practicum course.

Butler President James M. Danko said the University deeply appreciates the devotion to Butler by Scott and Zotec Partners. “We are not only grateful for their financial contribution, but for their partnership to impact the quality of the student experience at Butler.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Zotec Partners Continues Sponsorship With Butler Athletics

Butler Alumnus and Zotec Founder and CEO Scott Law Proud for his Company to Support Student-Athletes.

Aug 08 2017 Read more

Butler Becomes Indiana's First Fair Trade Campus


PUBLISHED ON Apr 14 2016

Butler University today became the first Fair Trade Designated campus in Indiana, agreeing to use and sell products such as coffee, chocolate, and clothing that were grown, harvested, crafted, and traded in ways that improve lives and protect the environment.

Fair trade items such as Barkthins dark chocolate and Alta Gracia apparel are available in the Butler Bookstore, Starbucks, C-Club and C-Store. Each of these retail locations will sell at least two food items that are Fair Trade-designated. Additionally, Fair Trade items such as sugar and coffee are being used in both campus dining halls.

fair trade logo“This is an exciting opportunity for Butler University because Butler is the first certified Fair Trade Designated university in Indiana,” said Kylie Nealis, the national organizer for Fair Trade Colleges and Universities.

The process to become Fair Trade certified has occurred over the past year, led by the Student Government Association in partnership with University Dining Services, Butler Sustainability, the Butler Bookstore, and the Office of the President. This certification aligns with the Butler University Sustainability and Climate Action Plan.

“This is especially exciting because after this major milestone Butler will be able to continue adding more Fair Trade items to its menus," said Matt Proctor, Marketing Manager for Butler Dining Services.

Fair trade is a social movement whose goal is to help producers in developing countries achieve better trading standards and working conditions globally. This is done to promote higher environmental and social standards. The program Butler is involved in is called A University Fair Trade Campaign.

The Fair Trade certification model is designed and audited to ensure equitable trade practices at every level of the supply chain. To earn a license from Fair Trade USA to use the Fair Trade Certified™ label on their products, companies must buy from certified farms and organizations, pay Fair Trade prices and premiums and submit to a rigorous supply chain audits. This process entails a high level of transparency and traceability in their global supply chains.


Media contact:
Marc Allan

Farm Manager Tim Dorsey

Farming Full-Time: How Tim Dorsey Discovered the World Through Agriculture

BY Katie Grieze

PUBLISHED ON Nov 25 2019

This story is part of a mini-series exploring The Farm at Butler, its methods, and its mission. Part two of six.


Tim Dorsey first started gardening because he wanted to become more self-sufficient—to give something back to the world around him. He wanted to become more connected with the Earth and its people, and he wanted to learn something. So he got his hands in the soil and taught himself to create something from it.

Dorsey never had much exposure to farming growing up in suburban New Jersey, and he says he didn’t really start paying attention to anything seriously until after college. But that’s when he realized most of his newfound interests—from environmental issues, to rural communities, to local economics, to health and nutrition—all converged in the concept of agriculture.

“My mind started slowly reeling, and I had some ideas for the future,” he says.

He’d recently graduated from Taylor University, where he studied philosophy.

“So, like all good philosophy students—unless you’re in the 0.1 percent of those who go on to become a professor or something—I ended up doing other random things afterwards,” Dorsey says. “But I don’t think that’s wasted. I think it kind of shapes you.”

Between shifts at a local health food store, Dorsey spent his post-college years practicing sustainable farming in his backyard and a few other spots in his Indianapolis neighborhood. As gardening grew into a little more than a hobby, he started meeting more urban farmers and reading every book he could find on sustainable food. He started a small community-supported agriculture (CSA) program—a sort of produce subscription service—and sold a few vegetables to local chefs. He dreamt of eventually finding a few acres where he could scale up.

Then, he found out Butler University was looking for someone to take over the farm that a group of students had planted.

Dorsey started as Butler’s Farm Manager in 2011. For the first three years, he worked as long as the sun was up, teaching himself the job. Now he’s making due with fairly regulated hours, but he always wishes he had a little more time. It’s rare for him to leave The Farm with a completed checklist.

Still, he says The Farm is “an ongoing attempt and demonstration at what can be done on this small parcel of land. And I think in that regard, we surprise a lot of people with what can come out of an acre that’s not even fully utilized.”

For Dorsey, the need to experiment with sustainable, organic farming methods is a no-brainer.

“We have to do something different,” he says. “We can’t think we just know all the answers. And we’re getting an even clearer sense of how locally-based, small-scale agriculture can actually meet the challenge of production.”


The Life of a Farm Manager

Every day on the farm brings something new, but here’s a glimpse into some of the tasks you might find Dorsey working on.

  • Watering and harvesting crops
  • Filling produce orders for local restaurants and Butler Dining
  • Prepping for the weekly Farm Stand (Thursdays, 4:00-6:00 PM)
  • Planning and establishing new growing areas
  • Hand-weeding crop beds
  • Cleaning harvest crates
  • Mowing grass
  • Installing electric fences, flash tape, and other pest-control methods
  • Teaching Butler classes
  • Leading community tours
  • Supervising farm interns
  • Facilitating student research projects



Part 1: Getting To The Root of It: How Butler’s One-Acre Farm Has Evolved In a Decade

Part 2: Farming Full-Time: How Tim Dorsey Discovered the World Through Agriculture

Part 3: A Crash Course on Nature-Focused, Hands-In-The-Dirt Growing

Part 4: Sustainability on the Syllabus

Part 5: A Model for Urban Farming in Indianapolis

Part 6: So, Where Does All The Food Go?


Explore the full Farm at Butler mini-series here


Media Contact:
Katie Grieze
News Content Manager
260-307-3403 (cell)

Farm Manager Tim Dorsey

Farming Full-Time: How Tim Dorsey Discovered the World Through Agriculture

Butler’s self-taught Farm Manager brings a fresh perspective to growing food.

Nov 25 2019 Read more

CUE Farm Manager Earns River Friendly Farmer Award


PUBLISHED ON Jul 31 2017

Tim Dorsey, Manager of the CUE Farm at Butler, has won the 2017 River Friendly Farmer Award, a statewide initiative that recognizes farmers who do an outstanding job of protecting rivers, lakes, and streams through their everyday conservation management practices.
Tim Dorsey

The award is given by the Marion County Soil & Water Conservation District. Dorsey will be recognized by Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch and leaders of the Indiana Conservation Partnership at this year’s Indiana State Fair.

“Tim works tirelessly each year to refine and improve conservation practices on the CUE Farm, and it shows in the quality of produce we are able to offer to our customers,” said Julia Angstmann, Director of Butler’s Center for Urban Ecology. “When an ecosystem is in balance, there is no need for artificial fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides that are so harmful to our water resources. The farm’s native and cultivated organisms—pollinators, predatory insects, and carefully selected and placed plants—create checks and balances in the system that benefit all life on the farm."

Nestled between the White River and the Central Canal, the Butler Center for Urban Ecology Farm produces mixed vegetables, fruits, nuts, herbs, flowers, and mushrooms. In recognizing Dorsey, the Soil & Water Conservation District noted that his goals are soil regeneration and holistic farm management, and that he uses a variety of techniques for conserve water and improve soil.

Under his watch, water infiltration has improved visibly, which has made denser plantings possible. That not only improves revenue opportunities but combats weeds.

The CUE Farm has also recently begun to see the presence of reptile life on the farm, which could be attributed to the layered perennial cover available as habitat. Butler University also maintains a managed prairie and riparian buffer adjacent to the farm.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


CUE Farm Manager Earns River Friendly Farmer Award

Tim Dorsey to be honored at this year's Indiana State Fair.

Jul 31 2017 Read more

Butler, CTS Announce Campus-Sharing Partnership


PUBLISHED ON Jun 12 2017

Butler University and Christian Theological Seminary on June 12 announced a campus-sharing partnership. President James M. Danko sent this email explaining the deal:Christian Theological Seminary

Since 2015-2016, Butler University and Christian Theological Seminary (CTS) have been exploring ways to expand and enhance educational experiences at our schools through academic partnerships, operational services, and shared space. After much discussion and community input, we are pleased to inform you that the Board of Trustees for both schools have drafted a campus-sharing strategy and partnership under which Butler would purchase a significant portion of the CTS campus.

Under the potential agreement, Butler would purchase all but a parcel of land on the far west side of the CTS property. CTS would continue to reside on campus—in a portion of the main building, counseling center, and apartments—through a special long-term lease.

This agreement is a creative collaboration that benefits both schools. It supports the growth and momentum of Butler 2020, providing our University with new physical space, including the CTS apartments, for potential development as we seek to further enhance the Butler academic experience. Meanwhile, CTS finds itself with an abundance of space and believes strongly in the responsible stewardship of its resources, including land and buildings. This partnership helps advance the vision of both institutions while keeping them independent.

I am pleased to announce that Butler’s College of Education would move to CTS beginning with the 2018–2019 academic year, providing the COE community with a space that will better fit its learning objectives. Furthermore, as part of this potential agreement, we would identify and pursue other areas of collaboration and shared operational services, such as our bookstore and buildings and grounds maintenance.

Over the next three months, Butler and CTS leadership will continue to work together to finalize the remaining details, with plans for final approval of the arrangement by the Boards of Trustees of both schools in early September. In the meantime, as always, I welcome your questions and thoughts.


James M. Danko,
Butler University



Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler, CTS Announce Campus-Sharing Partnership

Butler University and Christian Theological Seminary on June 12 announced a campus-sharing partnership.

Jun 12 2017 Read more

Robert Soltis '87 Named New Dean of COPHS


PUBLISHED ON May 11 2016

Robert Soltis ’87, who has taught Pharmacology at Drake University since 1992 and is currently the Ellis and Nelle Levitt Distinguished Professor of Pharmacology, will return to Butler University as the new Dean of the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (COPHS) beginning June 27.

Dean Robert SoltisSoltis served as Chair of the Department of Pharmaceutical, Biomedical and Administrative Sciences in Drake’s College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences from 2003-2012 and has been a full Professor since 2007. In 2000-2001, he was a Visiting Scientist at Pioneer Hi-Bred International in Johnston, Iowa.

“When (Butler Dean) Mary Graham told me she was retiring, I thought this would be a great opportunity,” Soltis said. “I’m looking forward to getting back to Butler and working with the faculty and staff in the college.”

During his 24 years at Drake, Soltis was involved in a variety of innovative projects, including leading efforts to renovate lab spaces and developing and implementing a new undergraduate degree in health sciences. In addition, he has been engaged in strategic planning and earned a reputation for being an excellent teacher, scholar, and collaborative, transparent leader. He also served as Faculty Senate president.

Prior to joining Drake, he was a Pharmacology Research Associate (PRAT Fellow) at the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

At Butler, he will oversee the University’s second-largest college, with 937 students. COPHS’s three-year average pass rate for the North American Pharmacy Licensure Exam (NAPLEX) is 99.2 percent, and its three-year average pass rate for the PANCE (Physician Assistant National Certifying Exam) is 96 percent. The national pass rate average is 94 percent.

“Bob’s significant experience as a faculty member, department chair, and Faculty Senate president at Drake make him an ideal candidate to serve as the next Dean of COPHS,” Butler Provost Kathryn Morris said. “I believe Bob will elevate COPHS from its already strong standing, and he will contribute to the broader academic leadership team at Butler. I look forward to working with him.”

Soltis earned his Bachelor of Science in Pharmacy (cum laude) from Butler and his doctorate in Pharmacology/Toxicology at the Indiana University School of Medicine in 1991. His wife, Denise, and their twin daughters, Abby and Sarah, are all Butler alumni. (Their daughter Emily graduated from Bradley University.)

Denise Soltis worked at Drake for several years. She is now pursuing a master’s in Global Health through Northwestern University.

Soltis said that over the years he has kept up with Butler’s College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences through the Dean’s newsletter and alumni events. When he visited to interview for the position, he was “struck by how complete everything seemed.”

“It was a testament to Mary and her administrative team of how well the college is positioned for the future,” he said. “I look forward to moving the college to the next level.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Robert Soltis '87 Named New Dean of COPHS

Robert Soltis ’87 will return to Butler University as the new Dean of the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (COPHS) beginning June 27.

May 11 2016 Read more

Schwitzer is Gone. Long Live Schwitzer.

BY Todd Leone

PUBLISHED ON Aug 01 2017

Schwitzer Residence Hall came to life in 1956 and for 60 years was called "home" to many Butler alumni and current students. Demolition of Schwitzer Hall was completed March 1, 2017, and construction of the new residence hall is currently underway. Although Schwitzer Hall has been removed physically, its ashes will be spread throughout campus and it will continue to serve a relevant purpose throughout the Butler University grounds.
A Butler Collegian photo of Schwitzer Hall.In the early stages of construction, bed frames, mattresses, chairs, and desks were removed from Schwitzer and donated to Goodwill. Existing doors, hardware, and equipment were also removed. These will aid in repairs for other Residence Halls throughout campus. The original stone entryway arches and sections of the building facade were removed and preserved. These parts will be incorporated elsewhere on campus. Thus, beloved Schwitzer Hall will continue to live beyond its useful life.

As Schwitzer's walls and floors were taken down, its remains began to fill the site of 750 West Hampton Drive.

As part of the LEED building process, all existing brick, concrete, and stone will be recycled onsite and used as backfill for the new residence hall. The bones of Schwitzer will continue to serve a purpose as the foundation for the new facility.

Shiel Sexton Company is General Contractor for the new $30 million residence hall, which is being developed by American Campus Communities. This is the second phase in the new frontier of modern student housing, a continuance Irvington House renderingof Fairview House. The new student housing will contain 660 beds in apartment-style units, a fitness center, study lounges, game rooms, a large community meeting space, and much more.

In the end, this traditional residence hall gives way to a modern facility, but the ashes of Schwitzer Hall will lay the foundation for a new place that will soon be called "home" to many at Butler University.


And They Said It Wouldn't Last: Richard Clark's Orchestra Turns 30


PUBLISHED ON Nov 08 2017

Butler Professor of Music Richard Auldon Clark started his group, the Manhattan Chamber Orchestra, in 1987. By 1989, the orchestra was performing at Carnegie Hall, and by 1990, it was being reviewed—favorably—in The New York Times.

“Many big names in the profession told me the group won’t last,” Clark recalled. “‘You’re doing great work, it’s a nice way for you to get started. But the group won’t survive.’ Well, they’re wrong. Tons and tons of recordings later and live radio broadcasts and Carnegie Hall shows and performances and international attention, we’re still here.”

Not only is the group still here, but it’s getting ready for a 30th anniversary concert at Symphony Space in New York City on November 21. The concert will feature music by Clark, Howard Cass, Seymour Barab, Eric Ewazen, and Alan Hovhaness.

“I play with the group, sometimes I’m conducting, sometimes they’re playing my music,” he said. “Most composers whose work we perform are living and friends of the group. It’s become a real clique in New York, a modern music clique.”

Over the years, the size of the group has changed—it started as 70 musicians, and now it’s 16—and a number its members have graduated to great organizations such as the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, and the Chicago Symphony.

But the Manhattan Chamber remains Clark’s baby. So at least once a month, he drives from Indianapolis to New York for rehearsals and performances.

“It’s a really good group of players who are really dedicated,” said Clark, who started teaching at Butler in 2003 and serves as conductor of the Butler Symphony Orchestra. “And I’m the chief cook and bottle washer. There’s a thrill to having your own group of musicians that you work with, people who you really know and really trust.”

But as much as he loves being in New York and playing with his orchestra, Clark said he also appreciates returning to Indianapolis, where the garage on his house is bigger than the Manhattan apartment he used to rent.

Richard Auldon ClarkFor one thing, he can devote more time to composing while he’s at Butler.

“It’s a focused, wonderful environment to create,” he said. “In New York, I was always running around like a madman playing every gig, every show, every concert, teaching in between. Freelance life in New York is a wonderful thing to do when you’re young, but it grows weary.”

Last year, thanks to a sabbatical and financial support from Butler, Clark was able to finish the opera he wrote with Kurt Vonnegut, based on the author’s play Happy Birthday, Wanda June, and see its world premiere performed by Indianapolis Opera.

“That was one of the landmarks of my composing career,” he said. “And that was all because of Butler.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan



And They Said It Wouldn't Last: Richard Clark's Orchestra Turns 30

Butler Professor of Music Richard Auldon Clark started his group, the Manhattan Chamber Orchestra, in 1987.

Nov 08 2017 Read more

Longtime Voice Professor André Aerne Dies


PUBLISHED ON Oct 20 2016

Longtime Butler Professor of Voice André Aerne died on Sunday, October 16, in Petoskey, Michigan. He was 84.

Aerne taught at Butler from 1966-1998 and also was often featured as a soloist in the Romantic Festival programs.

Andre Aerne“Professor Aerne left every life he touched richer,” said Sheridan Stormes ’76, MM ’81, Associate Professor, Performing & Fine Arts Librarian. “He loved teaching and he loved his students but held them to the highest of standards. He was always impeccably dressed and his conduct was ever that of a gentleman. He was gentle and soft-spoken but also possessed of a sharp wit. He valued and devoted himself to all things beautiful, from exquisitely executed music and fine literature to delectable food and glorious gardens to rare antiques, Oriental rugs, and Clarice Cliff pottery. André Aerne was one of a kind and I think I speak for all who have been his students, colleagues, and friends when I say that his presence in our lives was a very special blessing.”

Aerne spent his early childhood near St. Gallen, Switzerland. His mother was a pianist and teacher, and after they moved to the Chicago area, Aerne studied voice with Hannah Butler, a well-known Chicago voice teacher.  In his pre-adolescent years, Aerne distinguished himself as a boy soprano, giving numerous concerts and recitals including performances as soloist with the Chicago Symphony and recitals in Kimball Hall.  He toured with the Apollo Boys Choir and later traveled with that group as an instructor.

Aerne earned the Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Chicago.  Afterwards he enrolled at the American Conservatory of Music in Chicago, where he earned Bachelor and Master of Music degrees in voice.  During the course of his career, Aerne was privileged to study with a number of notable musicians.  His private teachers included Rudolph Ganz (piano), Leo Sowerby (composition), Theodore Harrison (voice), Nadia Boulanger (music theory), Gerard Souzay (voice), Pierre Bernac (voice), and Margaret Harshaw (voice).

From 1956-1966, he was on the faculty of Shenandoah Conservatory of Music in Winchester, Virginia.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Longtime Voice Professor André Aerne Dies

He was always impeccably dressed and his conduct was ever that of a gentleman.

Oct 20 2016 Read more

Butler Blue II Turns Over His Collar to Blue III


PUBLISHED ON Jan 24 2013

Butler Blue II, who served Butler University proudly as mascot for nearly nine years, turned over his collar to his successor, Blue III, during the University’s first “Changing of the Collar” ceremony on Saturday, March 9, at Hinkle Fieldhouse.

President James Danko took the custom collar created by Reis-Nichols Jewelers from Blue II and placed it around Blue III's neck during halftime of the Butler-Xavier men's basketball game.

President Danko presided over the first "Changing of the Collar" ceremony.

The inscription on the collar reads: "This collar is dedicated to all bulldogs that proudly serve as the official Butler University mascot. May prosperity and good health be bestowed upon all dogs granted the honor of wearing this collar."

This new official custom collar features sterling silver elements, including the University seal, athletic logo, Butler Blue logo, and mascot names, on blue leather.

“Blue II is in good health, but 8 years old is getting up there for an English bulldog,” said Michael Kaltenmark, Butler’s director of Web Marketing and Communications and handler of the live mascots. “Blue has served Butler so admirably all these years, and we want him to go out on top. Retirement will mean fewer appearances and less official business for Blue, but he will continue to come to campus on a regular basis and post on his various social media profiles.”

Blue II will get an official sendoff from noon to 2 p.m. March 29 when the Butler University Student Foundation hosts a ninth birthday party and retirement celebration for him at the campus Starbucks.

The party, which takes place two days after Blue II's actual birthday, is open to the public and will be streamed live at Blue II will be on hand to greet the campus community, pose for pictures, and collect a few much-deserved parting gifts. Local artist James Kelly of Mad Lab Studios will be there to unveil a portrait of Blue as gift to the University.

All those in attendance who bring a donation for Indiana Bulldog Rescue or make a gift to the senior class campaign (the creation of the Bulldog Memorial outside Hinkle Fieldhouse to honor Butler’s live mascots after they die) will receive a coupon for 20 percent off any item in the University bookstore that has a bulldog on it.

The bookstore will be selling two limited edition pieces—a new poster of Blue and a tumbler with four images of Blue from puppy to now. In addition, there will be a Twitter picture and haiku contest. More information about those is available at

“This has been a really well-received event in the past, especially since it falls around the time of the Final Four,” Kaltenmark said. “The last few times we’ve done this, we’ve had upwards of 1,000 people going through. I think that will be true this time too. People want to see Blue one last time, the Xavier game is sold out, so this is their opportunity.”

An American Kennel Club-registered dog, Blue II became known as “America’s Dog” in 2010 and 2011 when Butler men’s basketball team played for the NCAA national championship. Blue II appeared on the floor of every Butler men’s home and Final Four basketball games, as well as some away games. Butler players touched him before each game for good luck as they were introduced.

Blue II was bred by Frank and Jeane King of Kong King Kennel in Lizton, Ind., and presented to Butler as a puppy. He was cared for by Kaltenmark, a 2002 Butler graduate and director of Web Marketing and Communications, who also served as his voice on Facebook, where he was liked by more than 7,500 people, and Twitter, where he had more than 11,500 followers. In 2011, Klout, a company that measures influence in social media, named Blue II’s Twitter feeds among the nation’s Top 10 most influential accounts representing a college or university.

The dog also had his own website, a vehicle provided by Don Hinds Ford, veterinarian care compliments of 1992 Butler grad Dr. Kurt Phillips, and a host of other sponsors such as the dog food brand Holistic Select.

Over the years, Blue II became a media sensation, hobnobbing with celebrities including Colin Powell, Jimmy Fallon and Jillian Michaels. During the Final Four in 2011 in Houston, Blue II also met the likes of former President George H.W. Bush and First Lady Barbara Bush.

Blue III, better known as Trip, made his debut on Feb. 18, 2012.

Kaltenmark said he thinks Blue II is looking forward to retirement.

“He’s still excited to go to basketball games, but I think he’s also tired,” he said. “So he deserves a break. I think he’ll get accustomed to taking it easy.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan
(317) 940-9822

CampusExperiential Learning

A Crash Course on Nature-Focused, Hands-In-The-Dirt Growing

BY Katie Grieze

PUBLISHED ON Nov 25 2019

This story is part of a mini-series exploring The Farm at Butler, its methods, and its mission. Part three of six.


The Farm at Butler probably looks different from any you’ve seen before. It’s not a wall of corn or wheat, the same crop filling miles of fields along the highway. Instead, the one-acre space—nestled on a floodplain between the White River and the Central Canal—looks more like a backyard garden. Plenty of space separates each of the long, narrow plant beds growing more than 70 kinds of plants, and woody shrubs crawl up the sides of a wood-plank fence. You won’t see a tractor here, or even a plough—all the work is done by hand. And with just one full-time farmer and a handful of student interns, there aren’t that many hands to do the work.

Still, The Farm produces about 10,000 pounds of food each year.

That’s because Farm Manager Tim Dorsey and other leaders in Butler’s Center for Urban Ecology and Sustainability (CUES) have decided to let nature do the heavy lifting. Below, learn more about how nearly every aspect of The Farm at Butler draws from other ecosystems for guidance on how to make the most of organic growing.



The Farm is built on the idea of agroecology, a way of farming that looks to natural ecosystems for inspiration. Dorsey uses the forests and prairies surrounding The Farm as a guide, mimicking what he sees to create a diverse environment. For example, he tries to plant in a variety of layers, and he grows a mix of perennial and annual plants.

Dorsey has recently focused on adding more perennial permaculture elements, such as sturdy trees and shrubs, which live for years instead of requiring replanting each season. In addition to layering the canopy and providing shade as they grow, these more stable, low-maintenance plants minimize soil disturbance. Dorsey says this sort of farming is even healthier for the ecosystem than basic organic growing.


Caring for the soil:

A key element of sustainable, organic farming is protecting soil health. The more stable the soil, the less erosion and run-off will occur, the less pollution will take place, and the healthier the plants will be. At The Farm, Dorsey protects the soil in a variety of ways. For example, The Farm is on a nine-year crop rotation plan, which means a plot of soil grows a different plant each year for nine years. This gives the soil time to replenish itself with specific nutrients that were drained by previous plants. Some deep-rooted plants also serve the purpose of capturing the nutrients that have sunk to the lowest layers of the soil, then redistributing them to the upper layers, which helps make sure every nutrient gets used. And between plantings of different crops, they don’t use chemicals to kill remaining plants—they just lay down straw to smother out sunlight and conserve moisture.

During the winter, or when there is any gap in the regular rotation, Dorsey plants cover crops to keep the soil in shape. For example, as soon as they finished harvesting the onions this summer, they put in oats. Oats will grow a lot before winter, and they also have an extensive root system. Onions get the most fertilizer (from compost), and oat roots scavenge what’s left so that nothing is wasted. Then when the oats die in the winter, they easily become automatic mulch, making it easy to handle in the spring.


Making the most of bugs:

Most people understand the importance of pollinators such as bees and butterflies when it comes to growing a garden, and The Farm is always looking for ways to put nature’s workers to the task. Two bee hives on The Farm are home to many of its buzzing friends, and a plot of flowers—which are later sold at the market—attract several graceful butterflies at a time. When deciding which new crops to try, Dorsey often focuses on choosing ones that serve a secondary purpose of bringing in more good bugs. “If we can get things to perform more than one function,” he says, “that’s ideal.”

But some critters making their way onto the acre aren’t so friendly—some pests gnaw at the leaves and plant their eggs on the stems. So Dorsey also makes sure to use “companion planting,” incorporating flowering plants that attract the right predatory insects to kill the pests. You might think of a wasp as a nuisance—or just plain evil—but on the farm, it serves a useful purpose.



What grows on the farm?

Apples Cilantro Lemongrass Raspberries
Arugula Collard Lettuce Rhubarb
Asparagus Corn Melons Rosemary
Basil Cucumbers Mint Rutabaga
Beans Dill Mustard Sage
Beets Dwarf Korean pines Onions Scallions
Bok Choy Eggplant Oregano Spinach
Broccoli Fennel Parsley Squash
Brussels Sprouts Flowers Peas Strawberries
Cabbage Garlic Peaches Sunchokes
Carrots Gooseberries Peppers Sweet corn
Cauliflower Hazelnuts Peppermint Thyme
Celery Honeyberries Potatoes Tomatoes
Chard Kale Pumpkins Turnips
Chives Leeks Radishes Watermelon



Part 1: Getting To The Root of It: How Butler’s One-Acre Farm Has Evolved In a Decade

Part 2: Farming Full-Time: How Tim Dorsey Discovered the World Through Agriculture

Part 3: A Crash Course on Nature-Focused, Hands-In-The-Dirt Growing

Part 4: Sustainability on the Syllabus

Part 5: A Model for Urban Farming in Indianapolis

Part 6: So, Where Does All The Food Go?


Explore the full Farm at Butler mini-series here


Media Contact:
Katie Grieze
News Content Manager
260-307-3403 (cell)


Innovations in Teaching and Learning

One of the distinguishing features of a Butler education has always been the meaningful and enduring relationships between our faculty and students. Gifts to this pillar during Butler Beyond will accelerate our commitment to investing in faculty excellence by adding endowed positions, supporting faculty scholarship and research, renovating and expanding state-of-the-art teaching facilities, and more. Learn more, make a gift, and read other stories like this one at

CampusExperiential Learning

A Crash Course on Nature-Focused, Hands-In-The-Dirt Growing

The Farm goes beyond just sticking to organic methods, taking cues from nature to create a diverse space.

Nov 25 2019 Read more

Bulldog Memorial to Be Unveiled During Homecoming


PUBLISHED ON Sep 22 2014

Butler University will unveil a new memorial to its bulldog mascots at the Butler Bowl entrance on Friday, September 26, at 4:00 p.m., as part of Homecoming.

The memorial, which was adopted as a project by the Class of 2013 and became its official class gift, features:

bulldoggiftrendering0714-A custom dog house/columbarium (urn storage) designed and constructed by Millennium Monument Company with a granite and brick façade to match Hinkle Fieldhouse. Each dog's remains will be stored inside niches contained inside the dog house columbarium. Bronze plaques on the side of the dog house will denote which dogs' remains are contained inside.

-A bronze bulldog sculpture, crafted in Blue II's likeness, by artist Dale Johnson of Ohio.

On the side of the doghouse will be a plaque dedicated to the bulldogs that represented Butler in years past, starting with Blue I and Blue II.

The September 26 dedication ceremony also will celebrate the lives of Blue I and Blue II.

"At Butler, the likes of Butler Blue I, II, III, and the bulldogs who have gone before them, are considered to be more than just mascots,” said Michael Kaltenmark, Butler’s Director of External Relations and the owner of Blue III. “Each of our English bulldogs has come to be considered a beloved member of the Butler family during their tenure. Now through the creation of this memorial, we can both honor and always remember their tireless work to proudly represent the University."

Blue I, who died in May at age 13, began the live mascot program in 2000. She was owned by Kelli Walker, who worked in Butler’s Office of Alumni and Parent Programs from 1998–2004.

Butler Blue I made her inaugural appearance on the court of Hinkle Fieldhouse, carried in the arms of the costumed bulldog mascot (now known as “Hink”). In addition to attending men’s and women’s basketball games—where she rallied with the cheerleaders and the Dawg Pound before retiring to the bleachers to sleep—Blue I attended other collegiate sporting events and made regular visits to classrooms, residence halls, campus events, staff and faculty events, and commencement. At the annual Rejoice holiday concert, she rode a sleigh across stage to the tune of “Blue Christmas.”

Blue II, an American Kennel Club-registered dog, became known as “America’s Dog” in 2010 and 2011 when the Butler men’s basketball team played for the NCAA national championship. Blue appeared on the floor of every Butler men’s basketball home game, select away games, and the 2010 and 2011 Final Four games.

Blue II died in September 2013. He was 9. When his death was announced, wrote, “College basketball lost over the weekend what was arguably its most famous mascot.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler, CUE to Be Honored for Environmental Efforts


PUBLISHED ON Sep 08 2016

Butler University and the Center for Urban Ecology (CUE) will both be inducted into the Green Lights Hall of Fame on September 15 at the Christian Theological Seminary.

Sustainable IndianaThe Green Light Awards­—a series of climate solutions compiled by Sustainable Indiana 2016 as part of the Bicentennial—are distributed to organizations and individuals who are at the forefront of promoting sustainability across the state of Indiana.

The CUE is being recognized for its efforts to study, practice, and educate sustainable solutions for urban environments such as the CUE Farm, research on urban wildlife, and the Make Change Indy program that rewarded 440 Indianapolis residents for engaging in a total of 950 hours of sustainable activities.

The second recognition of the evening will be presented to Butler President James M. Danko for signing the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment in 2012 and taking subsequent steps to meet this commitment to achieve carbon neutrality on Butler University’s campus by 2050.

“The presentation of two Green Light Awards to Butler University is evidence of our leadership in pushing the boundaries of sustainability in Indianapolis,” CUE Director Julia Angstmann said. “The Center for Urban Ecology is proud to be part of a statewide effort to leave behind a positive environmental legacy for future generations.”

Sustainable initiatives on Butler’s campus to date have included two LEED Gold-certified buildings and one LEED Silver renovation, rain gardens and permeable bike lanes, motion sensor and LED lighting, the CUE Farm, and composting of food waste, among others. Each awardee was featured in a green Legacy story on the Sustainable Indiana 2016 website throughout the past year.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler, CUE to Be Honored for Environmental Efforts

Butler University and the Center for Urban Ecology (CUE) will both be inducted into the Green Lights Hall of Fame on September 15 at the Christian Theological Seminary.

Sep 08 2016 Read more

The First Tenant in the New Parking Garage: Scotty's


PUBLISHED ON Aug 18 2015

Scotty’s Dawghouse will be the anchor tenant in Butler University’s new Sunset Avenue Parking Garage, leasing 6,400 square feet in the northeast corner of Sunset Avenue and Lake Road. The new restaurant—its name is a twist on the more familiar Scotty’s Brewhouse—is scheduled to open in February 2016, with construction to begin in November.

“We’re thrilled to bring one of Indiana’s most successful and popular restaurant concepts to Butler,” said Michael Kaltenmark, Butler’s Director of External Relations. “We listened to our students, employees, alumni, and Midtown neighbors and believe Scotty’s will be a great fit for the Butler community.”

Scotty's DawghouseScotty’s will serve lunch and dinner and seat 250-300 between its dining room and large outdoor patio. As with all Scotty’s locations, it is “all ages welcome” and family friendly. The new restaurant will be open seven days a week, from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. (midnight on Fridays and Saturdays). University officials expect that Scotty’s will be open late following major arts and athletics events.

“When I heard that we were even in the discussion as a possibility for this location, I could barely contain my excitement to be the first restaurant/bar on Butler’s campus,” said Scott Wise, President and CEO of a Pots & Pans Production, the management company for Scotty’s Brewhouse, Thr3e Wise Men Brewing Co., C3 Bar, and Scotty’s Brew Club. “And the location … I don’t know if it could be any better squeezed between Clowes Hall and Hinkle Fieldhouse! I’d say this is the best way to kick off our 20th year in business.”

Scotty’s Dawghouse will employ between 75-100 part time and full time positions. It will begin taking applications online in January 2016.
Butler’s new facility, scheduled to open for parking in August, has 17,000 square feet of retail space on the first floor of the five-story structure, as well as 1,033 parking spaces. Kaltenmark said Butler is still actively working with other potential tenants.

Scotty’s and the parking facility represent an important step in Butler’s ambitious plans for campus development. Last year, the University completed the renovation of Butler’s iconic Hinkle Fieldhouse. Just a block down Sunset Avenue’s newly enhanced streetscape, Butler and American Campus Communities are building a state-of-the-art housing facility, which is scheduled to welcome its first student residents in Fall 2016.

Future development plans include additional phases of student housing development and renovation, and new academic space to house Butler’s science programs and College of Business.

Donna Hovey, Vice President, and Gordon Hendry, First Vice President, from CBRE’s Indianapolis office represented Butler University as the leasing agent. The new mixed-use retail and parking garage being developed by Butler University offers suite sizes ranging from 1,200 to 8,400 square feet, many with patio and outdoor dining options. For more information, please visit

Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler Summer Intensive Students to Perform at the Schrott


PUBLISHED ON Jun 24 2017

Forty-nine dancers from around the country have come to Butler University to participate in the second annual Summer Intensive, a three-week program designed to immerse 13- to 18-year-olds in the culture of dance.

On July 29 at 11:00 AM in Butler’s Schrott Center for the Arts, the public will be able to see what these dancers can do when they perform the ballet Don Quixote as well as jazz and modern works choreographed by the faculty members working on the Summer Intensive program.

DancersAdmission to the performance is free.

Butler Dance Professor Marek Cholewa, who oversees the summer program as Artistic Director, said the purpose of the intensive is to help students grow and develop as they prepare for the next stages in their dance education.

The dancers participate in classes from 9:00 AM to 5:30 PM, Monday through Saturday. There is a strong focus on ballet, which is reflected in the ballet, pointe, partnering, and repertory classes. The students also take daily jazz, modern, and character classes, and all ballet, pointe, modern, character, and partnering classes include live accompanists.

There is even a physical therapist on site twice a week for the dancers to visit if needed.

This year, there are 49 female dancers, ages 12-17, participating in the intensive. Of those, 41 are out of state—coming from as far as California, Florida, and Connecticut. There are 43 who stay in Butler’s Residential College dorm and six who commute to campus every day.

“Students live here to immerse themselves in the culture,” Cholewa said. “We can talk about how we do things, but the best way for them to learn is when we work together.”

Four current Butler male dance majors, Nick Bentz, Francis Mihm, Graeham Toomey, and Nathaniel Tyson, also participate in the program so that the women have the opportunity to take partnering classes.

The faculty includes Butler Dance faculty members Cholewa, Derek Reid, and Susan McGuire, as well as adjunct professors Rosanna Ruffo, Monica Munoz, and Nick Owens.

The summer intensive is organized by the Butler Community Arts School and staff: Karen Thickstun, Director; Courtney Shelburne, Administrative Assistant; and Meredith Hunter-Mason, intern and current Dance major.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler Summer Intensive Students to Perform at the Schrott

Forty-nine dancers from around the country have come to Butler University to participate in the second annual Summer Intensive, a three-week program designed to immerse 13- to 18-year-olds in the culture of dance.

Jun 24 2017 Read more

Butler Breaks Ground on New Parking Facility


PUBLISHED ON Sep 18 2014

Butler University broke ground Thursday, September 18, on a 1,038-space multi-use parking facility located on the lot behind the Howard L. Schrott Center for the Arts along Sunset Avenue.

Construction of the five-story parking structure, which is anticipated to open in August 2015, will begin this fall.

President James M. Danko and Board of Trustees Chair Keith Burks at the September 18 groundbreaking. "It's another great day to be a Bulldog," Burks said.
President James M. Danko and Board of Trustees Chair Keith Burks at the September 18 groundbreaking. "It's another great day to be a Bulldog," Burks said.


The multi-use facility will include approximately 15,000 square feet of commercial and office space on the ground level.

“This represents a transformation of this area of midtown Indy,” Butler President James M. Danko said at an afternoon groundbreaking ceremony attended by trustees, faculty, staff, alumni, and neighbors.

The parking facility will serve the needs of faculty, staff, and commuter students, as well as event parking demand for Hinkle Fieldhouse, Clowes Memorial Hall, and the Schrott Center. The retail space is likely to house restaurants and businesses catering to both the campus community and surrounding neighborhoods.

The new multi-use parking facility has been in the planning phase for approximately 18 months. In addition to conducting a thorough parking analysis and gaining extensive input from campus stakeholders, the University consulted with the Butler-Tarkington Neighborhood Association, Midtown Indianapolis, Inc., and the City of Indianapolis.

Ted Feeney, President of the Butler-Tarkington Neighborhood Association, said the project will “enhance the workability, bikeability and overall appeal of our neighborhood.... We welcome the continued progress of Butler University.”

The parking garage is one of multiple projects in the works on the east side of campus. The University and City of Indianapolis began work in April on the Sunset Avenue Streetscape initiative, which will improve community safety and way-finding, while beautifying the public gateways to campus. The initial phase of the Streetscape project will primarily involve Sunset Avenue north of Hampton Drive, including a major reconfiguration of the 49th Street curve.

The Board of Trustees also has approved the development of a state-of-the-art student-housing facility with approximately 600 modern, suite-style beds. Construction of the student-housing facility is expected to begin in spring 2015 with completion in fall 2016.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Sophomore Siena Amodeo Earns Spot In Fulbright Summer Institute


PUBLISHED ON May 24 2016

International Business and Marketing major Siena Amodeo hopes one day to participate on the global stage, perhaps as a high-level employee of Google or Disney. She’s working toward that goal this summer as a participant in the prestigious and selective Fulbright Summer Institute.

Siena AmodeoFrom July 4-22, Amodeo will study at the School of Oriental and African Studies at the University of London, which specializes in the study of non-western civilizations.

Amodeo will take a course called Feminist Economics and Development, where she hopes to learn about the different economic policies in developing countries and how they affect men and women differently.

“It will be a very different experience than what I have in the United States,” the rising sophomore said. “Usually, we look at how the United States is related to other countries. In this program, I will be focusing on how non-western nations view the world.”

In addition, Amodeo and the other participants will get to see London, as well as take daytrips to Bath, Stonehenge, and Oxford.

Amodeo was chosen for the program by the US-UK Fulbright Commission. The commission selects participants through a rigorous application and interview process that looks for academic excellence, a focused application, a range of extracurricular and community activities, demonstrated ambassadorial skills, a desire to further the Fulbright Program, and a plan to give back to the recipient’s home country upon returning.

The commission is part of the Fulbright program conceived by U.S. Sen. J. William Fulbright in the aftermath of World War II to promote leadership, learning, and empathy between nations through educational exchange.

Fulbright Summer Institutes cover all participant costs. In addition, Fulbright summer participants receive a distinctive support and cultural education program, including visa processing, a comprehensive pre-departure orientation, enrichment opportunities in country, a re-entry session, and opportunity to join its alumni networks.

Amodeo, who is from suburban Columbus, Ohio, said she’s excited to learn about and see more of the world.

“I’m an international business and marketing major, and this is not something a lot of business majors get to do,” she said. “A lot of the students participating in this are not business majors, so I think I’ll bring a unique perspective to the classroom, and I hope to be influenced by the students who are with me as well.”


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Sophomore Siena Amodeo Earns Spot In Fulbright Summer Institute

International Business and Marketing major Siena Amodeo hopes one day to participate on the global stage, perhaps as a high-level employee of Google or Disney.

May 24 2016 Read more
Fall scene at Butler University

Finally: Campus Trees Pop with Peak Fall Colors

BY Tim Brouk

PUBLISHED ON Oct 21 2019

Fall foliage fans rejoice: Peak season has finally hit Butler University.

After a dry summer, the leaves were late to turn this autumn, but those yellows, reds, and oranges on the diverse collection of trees around campus should be visible for most of the rest of October.

“The change is a little late,” says Marcia Moore, the longtime assistant at Butler’s Friesner Herbarium. “You usually see that when you have summer drought. You need that regular rain in the summer for the sugars the trees are making for nourishment. When it’s dry, they’re protecting themselves and hold onto the leaves a little longer.”

Marcia Moore looks at specimens in the Herbarium.
Marcia Moore examines some old maple specimens in the Friesner Herbarium.

The Herbarium tree walk concentrates on select trees on the main campus marked with nameplates displaying the tree’s English and Latin names, along with the species’ area of origin. An example, a flowering dogwood in front of Robertson Hall, is identified as dogwood, Cornus florida, eastern and central U.S.

To extend the walk, Moore recommends taking in the trees within the 15 acres of woods north of campus, which are popping with color as well. These woods can be accessed at 49th Street and Lake Drive or through Holcomb Gardens.

“It’s a good representation of an old-growth forest,” Moore says. “Some of the beech trees in the Butler woods are thought to be 200-300-years-old. They are probably original growth.”

Native species, mostly

Moore says most of the trees on campus are native to central Indiana and some are more than 100 years old. Some include the red oak in front of Atherton Hall, the sugar maple east of Robertson Hall, and the tulip poplar near Jordan Hall.

Indiana’s state tree, tulip poplars get their name from their leaves and flowers resembling tulips, and they are well-represented at Butler. Every fall, a handful of Indianapolis elementary schools contact Moore for guided tree tours and to collect leaves.

“They learn about the top native trees, their Latin names, and how to draw the leaves,” says Moore, who has welcomed local garden clubs and conservation groups for tree tours as well. “It’s always fun to have them. We want to speak to the community, get more involvement that way, and get more people coming to campus. It’s a resource not only for students and faculty here, but for the community at large. It’s a good feeling to know we’re reaching people.”

Gingko tree by Jordan Hall
The gingko tree by Jordan Hall turns bright yellow before quickly shedding its leaves.

While gingko trees are not native to Indiana, Moore calls them noninvasive. Despite the smelly fruit that grows on some, the trees fit into the landscape well. They tend to rank high with the brilliance of their leaves—while they last.

“They’re not a problem tree. They’re very pretty,” Moore says. “After they turn that beautiful golden color for a couple weeks, they drop their leaves all at once. There’s no other tree that does that on campus.”

The color of the leaves are affected by sunlight and cold temperatures at night. The colder the night and the sunnier the day all dictates the brightness, according to Philip Villani, Associate Professor and Chairman of the Department of Biology.

The science behind the changing leaves involves the lowering or halting of chlorophyll in the leaves, which makes way for chemicals like carotenoids in yellow and orange leaves. Anthocyanins for red leaves are formed by glucose left from the fading chlorophyll.

A taste of the tree walk

Tulip poplar near Jordan Hall


Tulip poplar tree

This large tree represents Butler and Indiana well. Its strong, distinctive bark makes it eye-catching even in the winter.

Osage orange behind Gallahue Hall

Osage orange tree

Despite its name, the Osage orange turns yellow-green in the fall, but the tree is producing its distinct and inedible fruit—nicknamed “monkey brains.”

Flowering dogwood in front of Robertson Hall

Dogwood in front of Robertson Hall

This dogwood has some of the reddest leaves on campus.



Every tree on Butler’s campus—including those on the tree walk—have circular tags on them courtesy of the Department of Biology. Villani says the numbered tags are part of an inventory of campus trees, fueled by an Indiana Academy of Science grant. There’s more than 2,000 from 109 different species.

While tagging, Villani measured every tree’s diameter at chest height and noted the global positioning of each. This database is utilized for multiple sections of Botany, Natural World, and Ecology and Evolution courses.


Media Contact:
Tim Brouk
Senior News Content Manager
765-977-3931 (cell)


Community Partnerships

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Fall scene at Butler University

Finally: Campus Trees Pop with Peak Fall Colors

Worth the wait, take an in-depth look at the autumn foliage with help from the Friesner Herbarium’s tree walk

Oct 21 2019 Read more

CUE Farm Producing A Bumper Crop of Customers

BY Sarvary Koller '15

PUBLISHED ON Sep 10 2014

By Sarvary Koller '15

Senior Engineering major Alyssa Setnar rode her bike to the CUE farm stand on Thursday to pick up some fresh fruit.

“It’s a two-minute bike ride from my house, closer than any grocery store,” Setnar said. “It’s actually less expensive than the produce at the store, and I know where and how it was grown.”


Farm manager Tim Dorsey assists senior engineering major Alyssa Setnar, who bought raspberries and cantaloupe from the CUE farm stand.
Farm manager Tim Dorsey assists senior engineering major Alyssa Setnar, who bought raspberries and cantaloupe from the CUE farm stand.


Setnar is one of about 20-40 Butler University students, faculty and community members who come to the stand to purchase local organic produce grown at the CUE farm, a sustainable agriculture project created by the Butler Center for Urban Ecology.

The farm, located on campus by the intramural fields across from the Butler Prairie, was started in 2010 to promote student education and experience with organic farming practices and environmental awareness.

Each Thursday afternoon from early June to late October, the farm sells its produce to the Butler and neighboring communities. Farm Manager Tim Dorsey said the farm stand has come a long way since he took over in mid-2011.

“I used to feel like I didn’t know if we should even set these tables up,’” Dorsey said, “but now I’m really satisfied with the traffic we get. It’s a lot of students, too. I’d say almost 25 percent students.”

In addition to selling produce to the public, 18 community members receive packages of assorted produce through a Community-Supported Agriculture program that allows members of the community to invest in the local farm project.

They pay a stipend at the beginning of the summer for a season’s worth of produce.

“It’s a way the community can share in the risk and reward of small farming,” Dorsey said. “It was created to lessen the burden on farmers by providing working capital right at the beginning of the season.”

The CUE farm uses this capital to grow a variety of produce with the help of four student interns.

Julia Wilson, a junior double-majoring in Biology and Science, Technology and Society, joined as an intern in May and spent the summer planting seeds, harvesting produce, and pulling lots of weeds. She said her experience at the farm has given her an appreciation for small farming and the process of growing one’s own food.

“It’s a great thing to have here,” Wilson said. “If you’re a student, it’s right on campus, so that’s awesome. You can drive to the store and buy produce that comes from really far away, but this is all natural food that is grown right here.”farm2

The CUE farm offers a wide array of fruits and vegetables, from summer favorites like raspberries, tomatoes, and melons to hearty vegetables like swiss chard, broccoli, and asparagus. More obscure produce is also available, such as curly cress, salsify and kohlrabi.

Dorsey said he encourages all to come experience the offerings at the farm stand and support student education.

“We want to be a model for urban farming in Indy,” he said. “We really look to get students involved, and we are in the process of growing our programming. Anyone who shops here supports us in that.”




Grant Will Help CUE Farm Become a Hub for Education and Research


PUBLISHED ON Sep 01 2016

Butler’s Center for Urban Ecology (CUE) has been awarded a three-year, nearly $300,000 grant from the National Science Foundation to establish the CUE Farm on campus as a hub for undergraduate education and research.

Butler FarmThe money will support Butler faculty in the development and implementation of four urban agriculture research modules in biology, chemistry, ecology, and environmental science courses and to study the impact of those modules on student learning.

Faculty participants are Travis Ryan, Sean Berthrong, Elizabeth Davis, Jesse van Gerven, and Rasitha Jayasekare. Brandon Sorge and Grant Fore from the STEM Education and Innovation Research Institute at IUPUI will be leading the education research.

“This project is focused on making the CUE Farm even more of an asset to campus by tying it to the curriculum,” said Julia Angstmann, Director of the Center for Urban Ecology. “We believe that to accomplish this, there needs to be a cohesive program developed that provides a framework and incentives that help faculty develop portions of their course curriculum around urban agriculture.”

Angstmann said that after three years, Butler will have:

-Four courses that teach core disciplinary concepts through place-based experiential learning in the context of urban agriculture. Students will first learn about a core disciplinary topic (e.g, soil respiration and arthropod diversity in the BI230 Ecology & Evolutionary Biology ­­– Fundamentals course) and will then be introduced to the social and ecological impacts of urban agriculture and how the class topic impacts food production. Students will then conduct real research in the topic area by developing research questions and collecting, analyzing, and presenting data that will be used by faculty for scientific publications. By tying course concepts to their impact on the urban food system, students may be better informed and inspired to make more sustainable food choices.

-Published research on whether these modules were effective in increasing student scientific literacy and civic mindedness.

-A themed teaching community for Butler faculty. “By centering teaching efforts around a central theme, faculty participants will have a support network of other faculty and education experts to provide knowledge, advice, and resources to support the development of these research modules,” Angstmann said. “We hope to grow this network in the future to every College on campus.”

By integrating the CUE Farm into the curriculum, the University will be eligible for up to $3.6 million in funding in future years. That money would go toward developing modules in courses spanning every college on campus and then bringing this approach to other universities.

Opportunities to partner with Butler University in support of the Center for Urban Ecology, the Farm, and its community programs are available. To learn more, please contact the Office of Corporate and Foundation Relations at

Media contact:
Marc Allan


Grant Will Help CUE Farm Become a Hub for Education and Research

This project is focused on making the CUE Farm even more of an asset to campus by tying it to the curriculum.

Sep 01 2016 Read more

CHASE Announces Butler's Fulbright Winners


PUBLISHED ON Apr 12 2017

The Center for High Achievement and Scholarly Engagement announced the following U.S. Student Program Fulbright Winners:

  • Meghan Blakey (Middle/Secondary Education/Spanish) won an English Teaching Assistantship to Argentina
  • Chelsea Yedinak (English, German) won an English Teaching Assistantship to GermanyFulbright Program
  • Maggie Brauch (Communication Sciences and Disorders/Spanish) is an alternate for an English Teaching Assistantship in Uruguay
  • Miren Mohrenweiser (History/English Literature) was a semi-finalist for a Study/Research Award in the UK
  • Danielle Wallace (English Writing/Gender, Women, and Sexuality) was a semi-finalist for an English Teaching Assistantship in the Netherlands

Meghan, Chelsea, Maggie, and Dani competed against more than 4,400 students for just over 900 English Teaching Assistantship (ETA) Awards. Those who win an ETA teach English at various levels (elementary-college) and will complete a community engagement project based on their personal interests. Fulbright pays for the ETA’s airfare, lodging, and funding to cover incidental costs during the entire stay (9-13 months).

Miren competed against over 760 students applying to win a grant to conduct research in the UK–the country with the most competitive Study/Research statistics.

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides grants for individually designed study/research projects or for English Teaching Assistant Programs. During their grants, Fulbrighters meet, work, live with and learn from the people of the host country, sharing daily experiences.

The program facilitates cultural exchange through direct interaction on an individual basis in the classroom, field, home, and in routine tasks, allowing the grantee to gain an appreciation of others’ viewpoints and beliefs, the way they do things, and the way they think.

Through engagement in the community, the individual will interact with their hosts on a one-to-one basis in an atmosphere of openness, academic integrity, and intellectual freedom, thereby promoting mutual understanding.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


CHASE Announces Butler's Fulbright Winners

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides grants for individually designed study/research projects or for English Teaching Assistant Programs. During their grants, Fulbrighters meet, work, live with and learn from the people of the host country, sharing daily experiences.

Apr 12 2017 Read more

Summer Ballet Program Keeps Faculty, Students On Their Toes


PUBLISHED ON Aug 01 2016

While most of Lilly Hall was silent in July, the dance studio Room 310 crackled with the kind of energy and determination that 45 aspiring ballet dancers can bring.

The students had come from 15 states to participate in the first Butler Ballet Summer Intensive, a three-week (July 10-30) pre-professional program where they lived on campus and received intensive training in ballet, pas de deux, character, modern, jazz, and repertoire.

Butler University summer intensive dance class in Lilly Hall July 26, 2016“The idea is to make them excited about Butler Ballet,” said Dance Professor Marek Cholewa, who organized the program. “Not all of them will be coming to our University program, but some of them will. We’ll be able to view them and judge them wisely, especially those who apply for scholarships.”

When students audition for Butler Ballet, they typically come to campus for a day of tryouts and meetings, which gives the Dance faculty limited time to make decisions. Cholewa wanted more time with students to see what they could do. So he recruited Dance Professors Cynthia Pratt and Susan McGuire, as well as his wife, Rosanna Ruffo, an adjunct Professor of Dance, and two other adjuncts, Laura Byram and Jaclyn Virgin, for this summer experience.

The results were everything he had hoped for—he got to work with several promising students and get Butler on their radar for college. The students had a similarly positive reaction.

Lauryn Adams, a 16-year-old high school junior from Atlanta, Georgia, who’s been dancing since she was 4, heard about Butler from a friend who had toured campus. She jumped at the chance to participate in the Summer Intensive program.

“It’s been really nice to dance around different people and be exposed to other kinds of dancers—different bodies, different abilities,” she said. “So I’ve been able to take other people’s corrections that I haven’t heard before and get a new perspective from the teachers. That’s been really nice for me.”

Catalina Good, 16, who came from Orlando, Florida, said learned and improved a lot during the three-week session. She found the program “an enriching experience,” both from what she learned about dance and what she learned about herself.

“I’ve learned to nurture myself as a whole person, not just strictly pushing, pushing ballet,” said Good, who is going into her senior year of high school. “I love to do that, but to think about the aspects of a well-rounded person. I’ve learned many corrections about my body and treating it correctly, listening to my body more instead of just ignoring it and telling myself to go.”

Because of the experience, Adams and Good both said Butler is on their list of college choices.

Same with Erica Lohman, 17, who was one of 10 commuters who took part in the program. Lohman, who lives just outside Indianapolis and will be a senior at Mt. Vernon High School in Fortville, said the three weeks was like getting to “test-drive the college.”

She liked what she saw. She found the professors “amazing” and said she came away with better ideas of how her body should work and how to express herself while dancing.

“I loved it,” she said. “I think the campus is cool. I’ve enjoyed getting to see not just the dance part of Butler, but we’ve been able to eat in Atherton and get stuff from the bookstore and so it’s been really fun. I’ve really, really enjoyed everything about this intensive.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Summer Ballet Program Keeps Faculty, Students On Their Toes

"I’ve enjoyed getting to see not just the dance part of Butler, but we’ve been able to eat in Atherton and get stuff from the bookstore and so it’s been really fun. I’ve really, really enjoyed everything about this intensive.”

Aug 01 2016 Read more

Caitlyn Foye '18 Named Goldwater Scholar


PUBLISHED ON Apr 11 2017

Junior Caitlyn Foye, a Biology major from Newburgh, Indiana, has been named a 2017-2018 Goldwater Scholar, the most prestigious undergraduate award given in the sciences.

Caitlyn FoyeFoye’s field of study is Life Sciences. Her career goal is to earn a doctorate in Conservation Biology and conduct research to repopulate threatened and endangered species of plants and animals while publicly promoting environmental conservation.

Her mentors are professors Nat Hauck, Phil Villani, and Christy Edwards.

The scholarship is awarded to college sophomores and juniors nationwide. This year, 1286 students from 470 institutions were nominated for a Goldwater scholarship. Foye was one of 240 recipients.

A maximum of $7500 per academic year is granted. The scholarship is awarded based on merit, and the actual amount given is based on financial need.

Foye carries on Butler’s success associated with the Goldwater scholarship: Both Lauryn Campagnoli and Whitney Hart received honorable mentions last year and Luke Gallion ’16 was a Goldwater Scholar.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Caitlyn Foye '18 Named Goldwater Scholar

Junior Caitlyn Foye, a Biology major from Newburgh, Indiana, has been named a 2017-2018 Goldwater Scholar, the most prestigious undergraduate award given in the sciences.

Apr 11 2017 Read more

Business Students Show Their Abilities As Financial Analysts

BY Hayley Ross '17

PUBLISHED ON Apr 24 2017

After months of research, planning, and preparation John Boudreau, Spencer Wenzloff, and Ryan Reid made their way to Louisville to compete in the local round of the CFA Institute Research Challenge in early March. The way they decided to announce their victory? Just a short, simple email with their winning trophy picture.

“Brought some hardware home”
John Boudreau, Ryan Reid, Spencer Wenzloff

The CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) Institute Research Challenge is an annual competition that gives students hands-on, rigorous training in financial analysis. University students work in teams and are given a company to research and analyze.

“Essentially if you were an investor, anything you would need and want to know we should be able to tell you,” Reid said.

They found out about the competition in November, when their professor, Dr. Steven Dolvin, CFA, emailed his class about interest. Right away they knew who in the class would want to do the competition. Once they sat down together, the three decided to become a team and start research right away.

“As we got closer, we looked at what needed to be worked on, and did a lot of problem solving,” Boudreau said.

Work was divided up evenly, where they each focused on specific areas. Yet, Reid said, that didn’t stop them from being especially prepared.

“Even though we each specialized in certain areas, because our team is small we needed to know absolutely everything,” he said. “We wanted to be ready so we could answer everything intelligently.”

There were two “divisions” in the local challenge, where schools were chosen at random to compete against each other. Before the competition beganeach team sent in a detailed report. One team in each division went straight to finals. Everyone else in each division competed for one other spot.

“We had a 10-minute presentation and a 10-minute Q&A session, and believe me they were incredibly strict with the cutoff,” Reid said.

The team said the time limit was the most difficult part.

“The most challenging parts of it is it is only 10 minutes,” Reid said. “Trying to consolidate hours and hours of research to what’s essential for users to understand is hard. You always feel like you need more time.”CFA Society Louisville Award

They went in and did their presentation. Boudreau said they weren’t expecting what happened next. “I was really shocked when they announced we were advancing. We had the Kelley School of Business graduate team in our division. They are much older and have had so much more experience.”

Quickly they went over everything, and in two hours sharpened what they were going to say. Apparently, they had a secret weapon.

“Spencer and I thought we had a strong concept of the company, but if you asked me what the components were that made diesel engines, it was Ryan that knew that,” Boudreau said. “That boosted our credibility by a lot. The judges even gave him the nickname Diesel.”

The final decision was announced.

“They said it was a unanimous vote, and we just looked at each other and were like, ‘Oh, wow’ because there is no way it could be us.”

When asked why they thought they did so well, they cited their communication.

“We are friends and it is what makes us work,” Reid said.

They headed to Seattle on April 7 to compete in the next level, the Americas Regional, against 52 other teams from North and South America.

Although they did not advance in the competition, they were excited to participate.

Boudreau said this competition has changed his life. He said he already had a job after college where he completed brokerage training, but decided to resign. He said this competition has changed his life, and what he wants to do.

“I want to pursue things that are more like this,” he said.


Business Students Show Their Abilities As Financial Analysts

Students "brought some hardware home" from competition.

Apr 24 2017 Read more