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Chad Pingel, Katelyn Sussli Named Most Outstanding Students


PUBLISHED ON Apr 27 2015

Chad Pingel, a junior Marketing and Finance major from Des Moines, Iowa, and Katelyn Sussli, a junior Organizational Communication & Leadership and Political Science double major from Loveland, Ohio, have been named Butler University’s most outstanding man and woman students, respectively, for 2014-2015.
Katelyn Sussli and Chad Pingel

Pingel, who is minoring in Ethics, has served as a Butler Student Ambassador and chaired the academic affairs of his fraternity, Delta Tau Delta. Most notably, he has held roles as Vice President of Finance and Student Body President through the Student Government Association. He also works as a Student Orientation Guide and, next fall, will be a Student Orientation Coordinator. After graduation, he plans to stay in Indianapolis working in either the consulting or health care industries.

Sussli, who has a Business minor, will graduate in spring 2016. She has served as a Butler Student Ambassador, President of the Butler University Student Foundation, and Director of Administration for her sorority, Alpha Phi. She has been Student Director of the Volunteer Center and coordinator of the Academic Affairs committee of the Council on Presidential Affairs. After graduation, she plans to pursue her master’s degree in higher education.

They were selected from this year’s Top 100 students, recognized by the Office of the Vice President for Student Affairs and the Office of Alumni and Parent Programs.


In addition to Sussli, the Top 10 women students include:

  • Carly Allen, Middle/Secondary Education, Mathematics, Upper Arlington, Ohio
  • Kate Carroll, Finance and Marketing, Garden Prairie, Illinois
  • Rachel Chambers, Elementary Education, Sylvania, Ohio
  • Elizabeth Davis, Psychology and Pre-Medicine, Nashville, Tennessee
  • Rachel Erkilla, Chemistry, Newburgh, Indiana
  • Elizabeth Gormley, Elementary Education, Fond du Lac, Wisconsin
  • Rachel Hahn, Spanish and Communication Sciences and Disorders, Zionsville, Indiana
  • Anastasia Luc, Elementary Education, Northbrook, Illinois
  • Rebecca Pokrandt, Elementary Education, Northville, Michigan

Along with Pingel, the Top 10 men students are:

  • Bryant Dawson, Spanish and Science, Technology, and Society, Evansville, Indiana
  • Austin Del Priore, Political Science and Peace and Conflict Studies, Fort Wayne, Indiana
  • Ryan Dimmitt, Doctorate of Pharmacy and Master of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Tyler Hudgens, Biomedical Engineering and Biology, Elgin, Illinois
  • Renato Puga, Psychology, Philosophy, and Spanish (triple major), Monticello, Indiana
  • Perry Rabin, Chemistry, Highland Park, Illinois
  • Braden Sciarra, Chemistry, Seymour, Indiana
  • Joseph Thomas, Chemistry, Brazil, Indiana
  • Gregory Zemtsov, Religion and Chemistry, Yorktown, Indiana

“These are students who have demonstrated outstanding character, scholarship, engaged citizenship, leadership, and commitment to service,” said Levester Johnson, Vice President for Student Affairs. “We congratulate them on their achievements. They have been, are, and will continue to be wonderful representatives of Butler University.”

Since 1961, the Outstanding Student Recognition Program has honored students who, through campus leadership, community involvement, and academic performance, are great assets to Butler University.

The full Top 100 list, with majors:

Carly Allen: Middle/Secondary Education; Mathematics

Giana Bender: Spanish; Sociology and Criminology

Adam Beswick: Biology

Matthew Blandford: Music Composition, Mathematics

Aaron Brenner: Chemistry

Emily Brown: Chemistry

Jacob Brown: Pharmacy

Rachel Brown: English Literature; French

Lindsay Byers: Strategic Communication

Kate Carroll: Finance and Marketing

Kathryn Chamberlain: Music Performance; Honors Chemistry

Rachel Chambers: Elementary Education

Taylor Cox: Digital Media Production

Tanner Crandall: Chemistry; Spanish

Bryant Dawson: Spanish; Science, Technology, and Society

Austin Del Priore: Political Science; Peace and Conflict Studies

Jaclyn Demeter: Physician Assistant Studies

Ryan Dimmitt: Doctorate of Pharmacy; Master of Pharmaceutical Sciences

Mollie Ellis: Arts Administration

Mary English: Elementary Education

Rachel Erkilla: Chemistry

Katherine Evans Chemistry: Psychology

Bethany Feitshans: Pharmacy

Nicole Fluegel: Pharmacy

Emily Fox: Pharmacy; German

Colleen Frank: Psychology; Spanish

KayleeFulford: Marketing

Robert Gale: Finance; Management Information Systems

Catherine Geanon: Psychology

Elizabeth Gormley: Elementary Education

Margaret Griffiths: Science, Technology, and Society

Rachel Hahn: Spanish; Communication Sciences and Disorders

Aaron Havlisch: Actuarial Science

Megan Hebb: Communication Sciences and Disorders

Joey Hebert: Biology; Chemistry

Courtney Hittepole: Psychology; Sociology with a specialization in Social Work and Social Policy

Sean Horan: Economics; Mechanical Engineering

Tyler Hudgens: Biology; Biomedical Engineering

Connor Hummel: Pharmacy; Spanish

Kelly Jay: Biology

Lauren Karmire: Pharmacy

Chase Keirn: Physician Assistant

Ellen Kendall: Psychology

Kaitlin Klein: Elementary Education

Amber Kline: Biology; German

Ashley Kline: Biology; Biomedical Engineering

Kathryn Kruse: Spanish; Physician Assistant Studies

Anastasia Luc: Elementary Education

Hannah Martin: Arts Administration; Chinese Language and Culture

Scarlet Martin: Actuarial Science

Elizabeth McGough: Pharmacy

Magy McKary: Chemistry

Monica McKary: Biology; Spanish

Christina McKnight: Actuarial Science

Brett McMurray: Elementary Education

Trey Meehan: Strategic Communication

Mara Minion: English Literature

Christopher Mohler: Finance; Risk Management & Insurance

Blake Moskal: Science, Technology, and Society

Ryan Mughmaw: Chemistry

Arielle Noel: Physician Assistant

Garrett Oberst: Chemistry

Sara Omohundro: Economics; Finance

Mikinzie O'Neal: Communication Sciences and Disorders

Phil Osolinski: Finance and entrepreneurship

Ridge Parks: Marketing; Finance

Alex Petersen Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Chad Pingel: Marketing; Finance

Rebecca Pokrandt: Elementary Education

Paige Poure: Psychology

Renaot Puga: Psychology; Philosophy; Spanish

Perry Rabin: Chemistry

Rebeccah Rendall: Political Science; French; Religious Studies

Noelle Rich: Psychology;Sociology with a specialization in Social Work and Social Policy

Kaylie Ricks: Journalism

Katrina Rodriguez: Elementary Education

Cynthia Roush: Strategic Communication: PR & Advertising

Olivia Rudd: Human Movement and Health Science Education

Braden Sciarra: Chemistry

Luke Shadiow: Chemistry

Mackenzie Smith: Chemistry; French

Lauren Stark: English Literature; Spanish

Brittney Stephan: Religion; Organizational Communication

Micaela Strycker: Pharmacy; Spanish

Katelyn Sussli: Political Science; Organizational Communication & Leadership

Molly Swigart: Political Science

Joseph Thomas: Chemistry

Dessirae Turner: Elementary Education

Erin Vollmer: Arts Administration

Hannah White: Strategic Communications

Zachery Wolfe: Actuarial Science

Gregory Zemtsov: Religion; Chemistry

Steve Zikeli: Accounting

Amber Zimay: Secondary Education; Spanish


Two Summer MFA Classes Open to the Public


PUBLISHED ON Apr 02 2015

Butler University’s Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing program will offer two courses this summer that are open to the general public.

Intensive Screenwriting: Make a Movie in Three Weeks will meet Monday through Thursday from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. May 18–June 5. Writing Poems That Don't Fit: An Intensive Workshop will meet Monday through Friday from 6:00 p.m. to 9:40 p.m. August 3-14. Both classes meet in the Efroymson Center for Creative Writing, 530 West Hampton Drive.

Cost for each class is $500 if taken for enrichment (no credit) or $2,190 for three graduate credit hours.

For registration information, email Mindy Dunn at

Course descriptions and information about the professors follow.

Intensive Screenwriting: Make a Movie in Three Weeks
Taught by Booth Tarkington Writer in Residence Alix Lambert

Alix LambertThis intensive will NOT teach you how to use equipment. This intensive will push you off the edge of the cliff into creative free-fall, and ask you to complete a film before you hit the ground. This is what it usually feels like to make a movie - so why not start now? We will work on your individual films while assisting on the films of your classmates and we will learn the importance of collaboration in the art of filmmaking. This course will also allow you to understand the perspective of different roles that filmmakers often fill: writer, director, story-teller, actor and producer. Finally, the intensive nature of this course mirrors the experience of making a professional film.

Alix Lambert has directed and produced three feature length documentaries: The Mark of Cain, Bayou Blue, and Mentor, as well as numerous shorts. She was a writer on the HBO shows Deadwood and John from Cincinnati. She has conceived, written and directed two short series for MOCA tv: Crime: The Animated Series, and Ambiance Man. She is the author of Crime, and The Silencing.

Writing Poems That Don't Fit: An Intensive Workshop
Taught by visiting faculty member Daisy Fried

Daisy FriedDoes it sometimes seem as if the poetry world is divided into camps determined to prove that the other camps have nothing to offer? And where do you fit in? This workshop recognizes that the best poetry often doesn’t fit into any stylistic mode, and uses what techniques it needs as it finds them. You’ll generate new poems and revise your work for supportive, frank, detailed critique by the instructor and group, and you’ll read and discuss relevant work by modern and contemporary poets, with the goal of failing, wonderfully, to fit in. In addition to workshopping, you’ll undertake a series of kamikaze revision exercises. You’ll consider—in magpie spirit, and in hopes of embracing confusion as a way to work towards clarity—strategic, formal and thematic questions designed to provide focus but leave most choices up to you. While we will likely make plenty of suggestions for specific edits as you revise, the most important revision questions will be: “Who are you? Who do you want to be? What do you want your poems to be?”

Daisy Fried is the author of Women’s Poetry: Poems and Advice (2013), named by Library Journal one of the five best poetry books of 2013, My Brother is Getting Arrested Again (2006), National Book Critics Circle Award finalist, and She Didn’t Mean to Do It (2000), Agnes Lynch Starrett Award winner. She’s been awarded a Pushcart Prize, received Guggenheim, Hodder and Pew Fellowships, and the Cohen Award from Ploughshares.

She’s recently published poems in the London Review of Books, The Nation, The New Republic, Poetry, The Threepenny Review and Best American Poetry 2013. She was awarded Poetry’s Editors Prize for Feature Article in 2009 and won the Editors Award from Poetry for “Sing, God-Awful Muse,” an essay about reading Paradise Lost and breastfeeding. She reviews books of poetry for The New York Times, Poetry and the Threepenny Review. She is on the faculty of the Warren Wilson College MFA Program for Writers.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Undergraduate Research Gets Its Own Journal


PUBLISHED ON Mar 30 2015

The Butler Journal of Undergraduate Research, a 129-page online publication of college students’ papers on topics as diverse as modern political messaging and James Joyce’s naturalistic evolution, will publish its first edition on April 1 at

The refereed journal features seven papers written by Butler, Wabash College, Bellarmine University, and University of Tennessee-Martin students.

BJUR CoverThe journal, which will be published annually, was created through a 2013 Butler Innovation Fund grant. Editor Kenneth Colburn, a Butler Professor of Sociology, said the first issue took a year of planning and putting the plan into place.

“This represents an important addition to Butler,” he said. “We promote students at Butler getting to work with faculty to conduct scholarly research. For 27 years, we have held the Butler Undergraduate Research Conference to enable students to present their work. And now we have an opportunity for them to publish their work.”

The journal is interdisciplinary and is open to students from anywhere. Submissions for the first issue came from as far away as Africa.

Each paper in the journal is reviewed by a Butler faculty member who is an expert in the individual areas of research.

The journal is open access; the contents are freely available and published without cost to the author. Google Scholar will index the contents, said Franny Gaede, Scholarly Communication Librarian for Butler University Libraries, who serves as the journal’s Design and Copy Editor.

The editors—Colburn and Psychology Professor Tara Lineweaver—are now soliciting articles for the second edition. They hope to receive double or triple the number of submissions and are especially interested in papers in the areas of health sciences and the natural sciences.

Students who participate in Butler’s annual Undergraduate Research Conference, held this year on April 10, will be encouraged to submit their work.

“This is a milestone in Butler history,” Colburn said. “The journal demonstrates Butler’s commitment to undergraduate research.”

The papers in the first edition are:

-The Evolution of American Microtargeting: An Examination of Modern Political Messaging
Luke Bunting, Butler University (mentor: Margaret Brabant)

-Role Overload and Prescription Stimulant Use among College Students
Haley Cook, Butler University (mentor: Katherine Novak)

-Death Defied: James Joyce’s Naturalistic Evolution
Cody D. Jarman, University of Tennessee-Martin (mentor: Jeffrey Longacre)

-The Perpetuation of Graffiti Art Subculture
Camille Lannert, Bellarmine University (mentor: Carl Bergstrand)

-Mood-Dependent Memory in English/Spanish Bilinguals
Alix M. McLaughlin, Butler University (mentor: Tara Lineweaver)

-Digital Expressionism and Christopher Wheeldon’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: What Contemporary Choreographers Can Learn from Early Twentieth-Century Modernism
Kelly Oden, Butler University (mentor: Lee Garver)

-Civil and Common Law: A Historical Analysis of Colonial and Postcolonial Canada
Patrick Stroud, Wabash College (mentor: Stephen Morillo)

Submissions are currently being accepted for Volume 2, which is scheduled to be published in April 2016. The submission process is all done online.

First consideration will be given to papers received by May 10, 2015. There will be a second round of review for papers received through September 30, 2015, and a third round for consideration, space permitting, for papers received by December 15, 2015. Any papers after that date will be considered for Volume 3 (2017).

Students are asked to have their mentor provide a letter of support or recommendation of the paper as part of their application.

To contact the journal, email the editors at


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler Collegian Wins Seven SPJ Awards


PUBLISHED ON Mar 30 2015

The Butler Collegian was honored Saturday, March 28, with seven Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Awards, which honor the best in collegiate journalism.

Junior Audrey Meyer won for editorial cartooning (including "Ebola" and "Dirty Laundry"). Here is a link to Meyer's cartoon collection.
Award-winning Butler Collegian editor in chief Julian Wyllie, left, and managing editor Matthew VanTryon, right, with national SPJ President Dana Neuts at the SPJ Region 5 Conference in Louisville on Saturday.

Former editor in chief Marais Jacon-Duffy '14 and freshman Cassie Eberle won for general news reporting on the capture of a former Butler student by ISIS and video threat to behead him.

Award finalists were as follows:

Sophomore Matthew VanTryon, the Collegian's managing editor, was a finalist for two awards: in-depth reporting, for his series of stories about allegations of verbal mistreatment and abuse by the former women's basketball coach, and feature writing, for a story about former men's basketball player Andrew Smith being diagnosed with cancer.

Sophomore Katie Goodrich, who was news editor last semester and is studying abroad this spring, also was a finalist in feature writing, for her story "Trip Tours the Nation."

Seniors Ben Sieck and Mallory Duncan, who served as co-managing editors last fall and co-editors in chief near the end of last semester, were honored with a finalist award in the breaking news reporting. They wrote stories on-deadline for online and print about the death of former Butler student Abdul-Rahman (Peter) Kassig, who was beheaded by ISIS.

Editor-in-chief Julian Wyllie, a junior, was a finalist for general column writing.

The awards, for work published in 2014, were presented during the SPJ Region 5 conference in Louisville on Saturday. Regional winners advance to the national competition.

Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler Announces 2015 Spring Commencement Speaker


PUBLISHED ON Mar 27 2015

Holocaust survivor Eva Mozes Kor, who emerged from a trauma-filled childhood to become a brilliant example of the human spirit's power to overcome, will be the speaker at Butler University’s Spring 2015 Commencement ceremonies Saturday, May 9, at 10:00 a.m. in Hinkle Fieldhouse.

Kor and Jean Wildman, a longtime Butler benefactor, will receive honorary degrees.

Eva Kor“Eva Kor’s life is one of the greatest examples of what we mean when we talk about ‘the triumph of the human spirit,’ ” Butler University President James M. Danko said. “In living an inspiring life powered by what she calls a ‘never-give-up attitude,’ she has served as a champion of human rights, a tireless educator, and a community leader.”

Born in 1934 in Portz, Romania, Kor and her twin sister Miriam were 6 when their village was occupied by a Hungarian Nazi armed guard. In 1944, the family was transported to a regional ghetto, then packed into a cattle car and transported to the Auschwitz death camp. There, Eva and Miriam were subjected to experiments by Nazi Dr. Josef Mengele.

Estimates are that 1,500 sets of twins—3,000 children—were abused, and most died, as a result of Mengele’s experiments. Eva herself became deathly ill, but through sheer determination, she stayed alive and helped Miriam survive.

When the camp was liberated on January 27, 1945, approximately 200 children were found alive, including Eva and Miriam Mozes. They returned to Romania to live with their aunt, then immigrated to Israel in 1950. Over the next 10 years, Eva received a good education from an agricultural school, and went on to attain the rank of Sergeant Major in the Israeli Army Engineering Corps. She met Michael Kor, a Holocaust survivor and American tourist. In 1960, the couple was married in Tel Aviv, and Eva joined her husband in Terre Haute, Indiana.

Eva became a U.S. citizen in 1965, and the couple raised two children, Alex (a 1983 Butler graduate) and Rina. In 1984, Eva founded CANDLES (Children of Auschwitz Nazi Deadly Lab Experiments Survivors), a name she chose because she wanted to shed light on this dark chapter of the Holocaust.

Eleven years later, she opened the CANDLES Holocaust Museum and Education Center in Terre Haute. Thousands of people, mostly school-aged children, have visited the center since then.

Butler’s other honorary degree recipient, Jean Wildman, and her late husband, Robert E. “Bob” Wildman, built a family and at least three businesses during their long life together. General Equipment Manufacturing Company was a joint endeavor with her father and brother. The business expanded and prospered largely through the development of a conveyor system for broiling hamburgers, which in turn led the small firm to give birth to the Burger Chef restaurant chain. Burger Chef grew to over 1,200 locations before they sold it to General Foods in the late 1960s.

Jean and Bob went on to manage other family businesses, including restaurants, real estate, and standard breed horses.

As a Butler student, Jean was involved with Alpha Chi Omega sorority, was a Band Majorette, and worked in the library. She and Bob were recognized in 2002 with a Butler Athletic Hall of Fame Special Service Award. In 1998, they received the Mortar Board Award, and Bob was awarded the Butler Medal in 1990. Jean additionally was named as an Alpha Beta Honorary Member in 2011.

Jean and Bob have endowed two scholarships at Butler—the Robert E. and Jean T. Wildman Athletic Director’s Scholarship and the Jean T. and Robert E. Wildman Scholarship, which is in the College of Business.

In choosing honorary degree recipients, Butler University selects individuals who have demonstrated the highest standards of excellence, integrity, and concern for the public good. Furthermore, they are individuals whose personal qualities and values are consistent with those espoused by the University for their graduates.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Three Fingers Up – Way Up – for This Real Business Experience Team


PUBLISHED ON Mar 26 2015

Whenever a player in the men’s basketball Final Four hits a three-point shot this year, look for kids in the student section to be excitedly waving a gray foam hand with three fingers extended upward.

That’s called a “Thringer,” and it’s the brainchild of Brian Straughn, Adam Pallini, Cole Dalton, and Brian Todd, four Butler College of Business sophomores who created the novelty item as part of their Real Business Experience (RBE) class.
Brian Todd, left, and Brian Straughn show off the Thringer -- with a little help from Trip.

The NCAA was so taken with the Thringer that it bought 3,000 of them—750 for each student section—to give to the student sections during Final Four weekend April 4-6.

“We’re excited to have the opportunity that we have, and we’re excited to see how it plays out,” Todd said.

Todd said the idea for the Thringer hit him in his dorm room last fall while watching TV, when he noticed the number of foam fingers being used by fans at sporting events. He proposed the idea to his team in the RBE class.

The yearlong RBE class begins each fall with students coming up with an idea for a product or service and creating a business plan. They get up to $400 to do a “proof of concept”—test marketing—where they learn about pricing, target marketing, and packaging. The Thringer team, which calls its company Freelance Foam, tried out the Thringer at a Butler basketball game and saw that students liked the idea.

The final step in the first semester is making a presentation to an independent funding panel that can award up to $5,000 in startup funds.

It was there that Freelance Foam first made contact with the NCAA. One of the panel judges saw the students’ business plan and knew someone at the NCAA who oversaw some of the March Madness events. The NCAA representative came to the funding panel to hear their presentation.

“We asked her for her business card and we kept in touch with her,” Todd said. “She directed us to someone who’s in charge of their internal promotions.”

Then they went out and executed, including finding a manufacturer in Elkhart, Indiana, to produce their product.

“I didn’t know if this would work or not,” said Jim McKneight, Instructor in Management and Prelaw Advisor in the Butler University College of Business, who advises RBE students about legal, contractual, and tax issues while they run their business. “But what we challenge kids to do in RBE is to take a swing. Go try it. As long as you’re ready and you’re professionally prepared, usually good things will happen. And these guys were terrific.”

The Freelance Foam students said they don’t know whether they’ll continue to run the business after their class is over. Todd said they “never really did it for the money. It was just taking the idea and running with it. And there’s not a much bigger stage you can do than the Final Four, the biggest stage in college basketball.”

“After putting in hours of work for months to finalize this deal, we couldn't be more proud of ourselves for this accomplishment,” Straughn said. “It proves that hard work truly does pay off.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


COPHS to Begin the Nation’s First Pharmacy Student-Driven Multimedia Journal for Healthcare


PUBLISHED ON Mar 23 2015

Butler University College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (COPHS) this summer will launch the first open-access multimedia healthcare review journal, BU Well, featuring articles on pressing health issues such as the overuse of antibiotics and the development of resistance, the push of virtual healthcare and its effect on medical costs, and the rapidly changing future of the healthcare industry.
The staff of BU Well

This journal will be run by approximately 30 student co-founding editors, an external advisory board that includes professionals in healthcare and healthcare law, and founding executive editor Erin Albert, Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice.

The project was created through a Butler Innovation Fund Grant written by Albert and Dean Mary Graham of COPHS.

More is at BU Well’s Facebook page and Twitter (@BUWellJournal). The website for the open-access journal will be available on Butler University Digital Commons website.

“We wanted to give students an opportunity to lead through writing,” Albert said. “In this first independent study course with the 30 founding students during the spring 2015 semester, the students will be building policy, procedure, promotion, and the long-term strategy for sustaining this journal over time. During my own law school experience, law review was one of my favorite co-curricular activities, yet I never found a pharmacy school that offered a student-edited and student-driven journal like law review, so we created one at Butler.”

Graham said one of Butler’s strategic initiatives is to exemplify excellence in liberal arts, professional education, and their effective integration, and “that is exactly what we strive to do through BU Well. The communication and collaborative skills developed through this project are highly sought after in today’s health professionals.”

The 30 current Butler founding students were selected to be part of BU Well based on PCAT composite writing scores, along with interest in starting something new.

Throughout spring semester 2015, working on this journal will be comparable to a law review, giving the students the potential to distinguish themselves while at Butler. A law review is a journal focusing on relevant legal issues that is written, published and edited by students in the organization.

Functioning in teams, these Butler scholars have the chance to enhance their writing and editing abilities and promote more awareness on prominent healthcare information to the Butler community. Student duties will include constructing, collaborating, and circulating various scholarly articles gathered from other faculty, alumni, and professionals in the healthcare field.

“As students, we realize that this is a groundbreaking learning opportunity within the Butler curriculum and the first of its kind in pharmacy education,” said Craig Fisher, 2016 PharmD candidate and Project Leader for the spring 2015 semester. “To have a reaching impact on our profession while still students will be an invaluable educational experience, and these talented and innovative students are excited to soon make BU Well a reality.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan

AcademicsArts & Culture

A Night at the Opera: Soulful, Vengeful, Comedic and More

BY Sarvary Koller ’15

PUBLISHED ON Mar 17 2015

After more than 30 years as Artistic Director of the Indianapolis Opera and guest conducting across the country, James Caraher now relies on his vast expertise to prepare the next generation of opera talent—students.

Caraher, who joined the Butler Opera Theatre as Music Director in January, has opera students preparing for the upcoming “A Night at the Opera” performances, March 27-29 at the Howard L. Schrott Center for the Arts.
James Caraher

Show times are March 27 and 28 at 7:30 p.m. and March 29 at 3:00 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults, $8 for seniors and students. Tickets and more information are available at The program is below.

The performances join the opera theatre and Butler Symphony Orchestra for an unamplified, live musical journey through contemporary and historical opera.

Carissa Riedesel, a graduate student in her final year of the Master of Music in Voice Performance program, will perform an aria as Sesto, a revengeful and hot-headed young man from the Giulio Cesare in Egitto (Julius Caesar in Egypt), and a comedic scene as Despina, a snarky maid who claims all men are the same—useless—from Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte.

Riedesel said getting to perform in the Schrott Center with a live orchestra is a valuable experience for singers in the program. The opportunity to spend time developing her characters and then to bring them to life onstage with an orchestra has provided “a vivid glimpse into professional life.”

Thomas Studebaker, Director of the opera theatre, said he offers all seniors and graduate students the chance to perform an aria with the orchestra. The experience is advantageous for Butler students thanks to the small size of the program.

He hopes to grow the number of professional performance opportunities for Butler opera students in the coming years. The goal: to hold an opera performance each semester, including full operas and scene performances.

But the dream doesn’t end there. For opera students to gain realistic performance experience, there must be “butts in seats” to provide a live audience to engage with, Caraher said.

With soulful American tunes, vengeful Italian arias, and hilarious comedies about unrequited love, he encourages people from Butler and the surrounding community to give “A Night at the Opera” a chance and support the student singers armed with only their voice and expression, not even a microphone.

“It’s music theatre,” Caraher said. “Everybody thinks of oversized folks with horns on their heads screaming, but that’s not the case. It’s vocal music, orchestral music, drama, and theater. It’s many art forms in one big package—there is something for everybody.”


Overture from Guillaume Tell (Gioacchino Rossini)

Act I Trio from L’elisir d’amore (Gaetano Donizetti)

L’angue Offeso from Giulio Cesare (G.F. Handel)

The Trees on the Mountain from Susannah (Carlisle Floyd)

Act II Trio from Così fan tutte (W.A. Mozart)

Sous le dôme épais from Lakmé (Leo Delibes)

Donde lieta usci from La Bohème (Giacomo Puccini)

Evening Prayer duet from Hansel und Gretel (E. Humperdinck)

Bacchanale from Samson et Dalila (Camille Saint-Saëns)


Three Little Maids from School from Mikado (Sir Arthur Sullivan)

Quanto è bella from L’elisir d’amore (Gaetano Donizetti)

Finale from Mitridate, Re di Ponto (W.A. Mozart)

Vilia from Die Lustige Witwe (Franz Léhar)

Act III Quartet from La Bohème (Giacomo Puccini)

Ach, ich fühls from Die Zauberflöte (W.A. Mozart)

Act III Trio from La Rondine (Giacomo Puccini)

Intermezzo from Cavalleria Rusticana (Pietro Mascagni)

Va, pensiero from Nabucco (Giuseppe Verdi)


College of Education Is Named a 'Model of Excellence'


PUBLISHED ON Jan 27 2015

Butler University’s College of Education is the recipient of the 2015 National Model of Excellence awarded by the Association of Independent Liberal Arts Colleges for Teacher Education.

The Models of Excellence Award identifies outstanding programs in professional education that serve as tangible models of quality in the areas of Moral and Ethical Dimensions of the Learning Community; Partnerships; Liberal Arts; and Global Awareness and Action.
Ena Shelley

“The College of Education believes we must prepare our students for schools as they should be, not simply perpetuating schools as they currently exist,” Dean Ena Shelley said. “We must be willing to explore with our students the difficult issues of inequities that exist in our schools and society and to help them to become agents of change. This, of course, means that as faculty we must examine our own beliefs, be willing to keep our hearts and minds open to the ideas of others, live our lives with integrity, and model how great teachers take risks, challenge the status quo, and advocate for the rights of all students.”

The College of Education was recognized for its numerous partnerships with school districts in Indianapolis, including:

-The Metropolitan School District of Pike Township. The partnership provides a current practicing teacher the opportunity to serve in a dual faculty role in both the district and University contexts. This role, known as the Pike/Butler Master Practitioner, has been an important part of the middle/secondary program in the College since 1998.

-Indianapolis Public Schools’ Shortridge Magnet High School for Law and Public Policy. The Early College Program (ECP) provides students at Shortridge who are academically ready with access to college courses for credit at Butler while the students are completing their high school requirements. Early College Program students also have the opportunity to spend time on Butler’s campus participating in many educational programs such as Academic Day (during Welcome Week) and the Diversity Lecture Series. Butler has welcomed ECP students on campus since fall 2011.

-Indianapolis Public Schools/Butler Lab School. In August 2010, Indianapolis Public Schools and Butler University signed an agreement to create the IPS/Butler University Laboratory School, a public magnet elementary school. The College of Education helped design the Lab School concept, and has worked with IPS to oversee its curriculum and assessment development. The curriculum and learning environment is inspired by the practices of Reggio Emilia. Every teacher at the Lab School has completed his or her education preparation at Butler, and has participated in graduate coursework focused on Reggio Emiliaor in professional development through the Indianapolis Reggio Collaborative.

-Indiana Partnership for Young Writers. The Indiana Partnership for Young Writers, located at the IPS/Butler Lab School, provides professional development in the teaching of reading and writing. In 12 years, it has served more than 1,500 teachers, 150 undergraduates, and 113 schools.

“Butler’s College of Education certainly strives to build exceptional partnerships across the University, in our local schools, and across the Indianapolis community,” Shelley said. “In this challenging time of teacher education, it certainly takes all those who are passionate about this profession to lift it up and give it the recognition it so richly deserves. Butler serves as an exemplary beacon of how our next generation of teachers can be prepared.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Butler Study Abroad Program Ranked Among Nation's Best


PUBLISHED ON Jan 22 2015

Butler University’s Global Adventures in the Liberal Arts (GALA) program, in which professors accompany students on a semester-long trip, has been named one of the top study-abroad programs in the country by

“This program is perfect for the student who does not want to settle in one place, but wants to experience several cultures,” the website said. “While traveling, the faculty member teaches one course, and then students are joined at different locations by other faculty, who teach other courses related to the locale. In addition to GALA, Butler University offers over 100 other study abroad programs.”

GALA was ranked ninth among “The 50 Best Study Abroad Programs in America.”

More about GALA can be found here.

Monte Broaded, Butler’s Director of International Programs, said most of the courses offered during the GALA programs are designed to satisfy Butler core curriculum requirements that students would normally take in their second year.

“A course from Butler’s Global and Historical Studies program—such as Frontiers in Latin America, East Asian Interactions, Modernizing and Contemporary Europe, or Resistance and Reaction: Colonialism and Post-Colonialism in Africa—serves as an academic anchor for the GALA program,” he said.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


Grant Will Help Butler Students Intern in Asia Next Summer


PUBLISHED ON Dec 11 2014

Butler University’s Center for Global Education has been awarded a grant of nearly $100,000 from the Freeman Foundation to enable students to complete internships in East and Southeast Asia in the summer of 2015.

The Center will organize a group experience—Butler Summer in Shanghai—in which 12–14 students will travel with a China-specialist member of the Butler faculty to Shanghai for a six-week program of individually designed internships combined with group excursions and cultural immersion activities.

Monte Broaded, Director of the Center for Global Education, said the Center will also be able to award 5-7 “at-large” grants to individual students who organize their own internships during summer 2015 or during the 2015-16 academic year.

In all, the grant will enable the Center to make 19 awards of $5,000 each, which will offset a significant portion, though not all, of the total participation cost.

The Center will hold information sessions about the program in the first two weeks of the spring semester. Applications for the summer program will be due by Friday, February 6.

Broaded said that because of Butler’s emphasis on combining liberal arts education with pre-professional training, experiential learning opportunities—such as internships—play an important role in each of Butler’s six colleges. More than 600 Butler students participate in internships and related experiences each year.

Butler also has a strong commitment to global engagement. The University consistently ranks in the top 25 master’s institutions nationwide in the proportion of undergraduates who study abroad. In recent years, Butler has placed 4-6 students each year in academic-credit-bearing internships in East and Southeast Asia locations, including China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam.


Media contact:
Marc Allan


New MBA Class Offers a 360-Degree View of Sports


PUBLISHED ON Nov 24 2014

Students in Butler University’s MBA program said they wanted to learn more about the economy of Indianapolis, and the College of Business listened: It created Business Practicum (MBA522), an experiential 2½-day, two-credit course designed to explore a specific local economic cluster.

This spring, the course will focus on the business of sport, including an in-depth look at the finance, marketing, entrepreneurial, and overall impact of sports in Central Indiana.

Butler University's College of Business building June 26, 2013.During the class, which will meet March 4­–6, students will visit multiple teams, venues, and related businesses around Indianapolis.

“In the Butler MBA program, ‘real life, real business’ is not just an advertising tag,” said Tim Bennett, the College of Business’ Director of Graduate Programs. “It’s a guiding force for how we deliver our curriculum. We’re telling the Central Indiana community that if you engage in this graduate education, it’ll be about real life, real business. Every opportunity we can take, we will expose you to that real life, real business.”

Bennett said that after students visit with people involved in the world of sports in Indianapolis, they will be split into groups and assigned to work on a research question. They’ll present their findings to a panel of judges that includes industry leaders in the sports field.

“This course was designed based on student feedback and a desire to look at an entire economic cluster, not just one organization, and to be exposed to a 360 view,” Bennett said.

In future sessions of Business Practicum, students might examine segments of the economy that include life sciences, heavy manufacturing, and energy.

“There are lots of ways we could go,” he said. “For this class, sports just bubbled to the top.”


Media contact:
Marc Allan