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For Families at St. Vincent Heart Center, Mozart While They Wait

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PUBLISHED ON Oct 14 2014

By Sarvary Koller '15

Piano melodies of Chopin, Mozart, and Gershwin drift through the air as Patricia Smith walks into the St. Vincent Heart Center lounge to wait for her husband during his surgery.

She enters the atrium, makes a beeline past the blaring television and concerned families, and takes a seat to listen as Butler University Adjunct Piano Professor Anna Briscoe performs.

Anna Briscoe said her performances at the St. Vincent Heart Center helped soothe anxious families.
Anna Briscoe said her performances at the St. Vincent Heart Center helped soothe anxious families.

 

“It’s soothing while you have to wait and wait and wait,” Smith said. “This place is noisy, but it covers that up. I think the music maybe keeps people from talking so loud.”

Briscoe plays at the Heart Center as a part of a new partnership between the hospital and the Jordan College of Arts School of Music. Faculty and student musicians will play informal lunchtime concerts at the Heart Center each week to share the power of music for healing and relaxation.

Susan Jacques, hospital chaplain, said the Heart Center agreed to host the concerts to support the spiritual health of families and loved ones waiting nervously in the lounge.

“This is a high-anxiety place,” Jacques said. “Your heart is life or death. Music is a way of feeding people’s souls to help them calm down a bit. It lifts their spirits.”

Briscoe said she enjoyed her first time playing piano at the Heart Center. She has played at retirement centers before, but she said she thinks her music has a different kind of impact here—it helps people relax and remember to just breathe.

“These people aren’t all obviously listening, but they are,” she said. “People go on their way, but if my music just for a moment lifted somebody, that’s wonderful.”

Larry Shapiro, Professor of Violin, said the idea for this partnership developed after Chuck Goehring, his longtime friend from St. Luke’s United Methodist Church, proposed that the School of Music send student and faculty musicians to the hospital to heal through music.

Goehring underwent open-heart surgery at the Heart Center about six years ago, and Shapiro said his friend was bent on giving back to the hospital after his incredible care. Shapiro presented the idea to Lisa Brooks, Chair of the School of Music, and Ronald Caltabiano, Dean of the Jordan College of the Arts, several weeks ago, and they supported the idea.

The partnership is new to Butler this fall semester, but the School of Music aims to provide the hospital with a student, a faculty member, or a small chamber ensemble to play music on a weekly basis.

Ben Abel ’16, concertmaster of the Butler Symphony Orchestra, will play violin at the Heart Center sometime this week. Others scheduled to perform this month are guitar student Patrick Wright and former violin student Tricia Frasure.

Briscoe said she is already looking forward to a full season of festive music at the Heart Center.

“I just can’t wait to come back during the holidays,” she said, “for Christmas carols and Nutcracker selections.”

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Community

Bobby Fong Remembered for His Many Contributions to Butler

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PUBLISHED ON Sep 30 2014

The event began with a video tribute that looked back at his 10 remarkable years at Butler and ended with the crowd singing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.”

In between, speaker after speaker rose to celebrate the life of Bobby Fong, Butler’s 20th president, who died September 8 in Collegeville, Pennsylvania, where he had been serving as president of Ursinus College for the previous three years.

President Danko was among the speakers to honor Bobby Fong.
President Danko was among the speakers to honor Bobby Fong.

 

“The secret to my father’s success is that he loved you,” Fong’s son Colin told an audience that included his mother, Suzanne, September 28 at Clowes Memorial Hall. “He loved you all, just as he loved his own family, and lived to see you succeed.”

Colin Fong was the last of nearly a dozen speakers, a lineup that included 21st President James M. Danko, former Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson, College of Education Dean Ena Shelley, Political Science Professor Margaret Brabant, trustees, and alumni. Levester Johnson, Vice President for Student Affairs, served as master of ceremonies; the Butler University Chorale provided musical interludes.

The speakers honored Fong’s achievements, which included balanced budgets, construction projects, and setting a warm, gentle tone for the University. They told stories about baseball and Oscar Wilde—Fong loved the New York Yankees and was an Oscar Wilde scholar. They praised his ability to connect with people in every walk of life, and expressed appreciation for the ways he touched their lives. Former Trustee Albert Chen urged the audience to “raise your hands in the air and say, ‘Well done.’ ”

Here are some other comments from the event:

James M. Danko: “His legacy of achievement, after 10 years of service on this campus, was remarkable. From academic excellence to facility improvements to higher levels of community engagement, Bobby Fong successfully led the transformation of Butler University from good to great and from a regional presence to a national one.”

Stephen Briganti ’64, who led the search committee that hired Bobby Fong: “The last candidate of the day was a man named Bobby Fong…. Bobby had a pad in front of him, and he told us what he thought Butler needed—before we had a chance to tell him what we wanted. And remarkably, what he said precisely matched the goals that we would challenge him with: 1. Balance the budget. 2. Raise the academic standards of Butler to higher levels. 3. Raise money. 4. Raise more money. Bobby then proceeded to interview us. And that was it. We had our president.”

Bart Peterson: “Bobby’s stated goals were to lift Butler University academically and financially, to enhance the quality of student life, and to integrate the University into the life of our city. This latter was the first thing that he said to me when he met. He did all of these things, of course.”

Ena Shelley: “When Butler University was approached by (Indianapolis Public Schools) Superintendent Eugene White to develop a partnership with Shortridge Magnet High School, Bobby immediately said yes…. When Butler was presented with the opportunity to open the IPS-Butler Lab School, Bobby once again immediately jumped at the chance…. He believed in my colleagues in the College of Education. He believed in all of us. He believed in me as the Dean. And most importantly, he believed that every child deserves the opportunity to a high-quality education.”

Margaret Brabant: “Waple Cumberbatch works in Butler University’s Building Services. She told me that the year she received Butler University’s Top Dawg Award that she and the other recipients of the award were invited to Bobby and Suzanne’s home for dinner. She said that he took the time to ask her what she wanted to drink and insisted that he be the one to bring her her drink. She said, ‘During dinner he insisted that I sit right next to him—right next to him!—and he talked to me throughout the dinner.’ And with lingering wonderment, she looked at me and said, ‘He treated me like I was someone special.’ Which, of course, she is.”

Todd Bolster ’05: “It’s very rare to meet someone with the innate combination of remarkable intellect and sincere kindness. I think that’s what I’ll remember Bobby for the most. It was as easy for him to talk about Mariano Rivera’s abilities as a closer as it was to passionately debate his views on the transformative power of education. He meant a lot to me as a friend, he meant a lot to me as a student, but I think as much as anything, I will learn and take away his ability to lead from within.”

Warren Morgan ’06: "I remember having a one-on-one with Dr. Fong during my sophomore year at Butler. I shared with him some challenges I was facing and asked him for some advice. After intently listening to my concerns, he gave me some advice that I still follow to this day. He said, ‘Warren, you are a strong leader. Do not allow the challenges to interfere with your destined success. Follow your chosen path, and be the best Warren and leader you can be.’ ”

Laura Michel ’08: “ ‘Personable,’ ‘visible on campus,’ ‘student-centered and ‘forward-thinking’ are all phrases that describe the student perspective of Dr. Fong during his time at Butler University. Dr. Fong truly enhanced the quality of the student experience during his tenure at Butler. Dr. Fong was passionate about listening to student suggestions and ideas and strived to make decisions based on what the students and campus needed.”

 

Media contact:
Marc Allan
mallan@butler.edu
317-940-9822

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Community

Love That Took Root in Holcomb Gardens Finds a New Way to Bloom

BY

PUBLISHED ON Sep 22 2014

On September 22, 1974, Sharon Leininger ’70 and Michael Nemeroff got married in Holcomb Gardens.

Forty years later, they returned—this time to plant a Japanese maple tree to commemorate their 40th anniversary.

_BS21843“At first, I was going to make this a surprise,” Mike said, “but everything else we’ve done in our marriage has been a partnership. So about a year ago, I asked her, ‘Would you like to do this?’ She thought about it and decided she would, and we made every decision together along the way—which is the way we do everything.”

The Nemeroffs first met in Indianapolis in 1972 when he was in the Army and she was working in politics. “She didn’t like someone like me at the time,” Mike said.

About a year later, they met again, this time in Washington, D.C. “She liked me better then,” he said.

They got married a year later, with Doug Petersen, Nemeroff’s college roommate and a Presbyterian minister, performing the ceremony. On Monday, Petersen was back, along with his wife, Anne, to help the Nemeroffs celebrate.

The tree planting idea was in the works for a year and a half. Mike Nemeroff contacted Graham Honaker, Senior Development Officer, who made the arrangements, which included a sparkling wine toast and flowers.

“It’s a nice way to celebrate 40 years,” Honaker said.

The Nemeroffs, who made a gift to Butler in honor of their anniversary, agreed.

“We’ve raised three kids together—she’s done most of the work—our kids are very successful, and we’ve been happy together the whole time,” Mike said. “Based on a sample of one, I think Butler women are pretty terrific.”

“It was special to be married here,” Sharon said. “This is very lovely.”

 

Media contact:
Marc Allan
mallan@butler.edu
317-940-9822

 

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Community

Officer Davis: 'A Hero Who Made the Ultimate Sacrifice'

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PUBLISHED ON Sep 22 2014

Butler University Police Officer James Davis, who was killed in the line of duty on September 24, 2004, was remembered on the 10th anniversary of his death as “a professional, friendly, and caring individual” and “a hero who made the ultimate sacrifice for this campus, the Butler-Tarkington neighborhood, and the city of Indianapolis.”

Assistant Chief Andrew Ryan and the family of Officer James Davis, at the unveiling of the sign remembering Davis outside Hinkle Fieldhouse
Assistant Chief Andrew Ryan and the family of Officer James Davis, at the unveiling of the sign remembering Davis outside Hinkle Fieldhouse

 

“If there is anything we can do to show our continued thanks for James, it is to make sure we never forget him,” Assistant Police Chief Andrew Ryan told an audience of about 75 that included Davis’s widow, Veleda; their children Josiah, Jarren, and Jaedyn; Veleda Davis's parents; police officers; administrators; and others outside Hinkle Fieldhouse, where Davis was killed.

To remember Davis, a sign was unveiled in his honor as part of the Fallen Officers Legacy Project, which memorializes officers killed in the line of duty. In addition, the Holcomb Carillon bells chimed 10 times in recognition of the 10th anniversary.

Butler President James M. Danko said the community owes Davis a great debt for his bravery and sacrifice.

“I know from his reputation that he was a courageous and kind police officer,” Danko said. “And, I know, from looking at his family members here today, that he was a loving husband and father.”

Josiah Davis, who was 8 at the time of his father’s death and is now a high school senior, said his father was an “optimistic, caring, and strong person,” who loved being a police officer. Josiah thanked the Butler community for being there for him and his family.

“It was a little hard for me to cope with the death of my father,” he said, “but the Butler University community took us all in. They gave me math tutoring, and, whenever I or anyone in my family needed anything, they were there as soon as possible, with big, embracing arms and wide smiles.”

 

Media contact:
Marc Allan
mallan@butler.edu
317-940-9822

 

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Student LifeCommunity

Bulldogs Break Out of the Bubble and Into Indianapolis

BY Savary Koller

PUBLISHED ON Aug 26 2014

By Sarvary Koller

The temperature hovered around 90 degrees as freshmen Sidney Parrish and Julia Thomas pruned trees at Indianapolis’ Holliday Park. Parrish and Thomas volunteered at the park as a part of Bulldogs Into the Streets (BITS), an annual freshman orientation public-service program organized by Butler University’s Volunteer Center.

[caption id="attachment_20709" align="alignleft" width="290"]Sara Patel, left, an accounting major from Western Springs, Illinois, and Sidney Parrish, a pre-pharmacy major from Indianapolis, help prune trees at Holliday Park as part of BITS. Sara Patel, left, an accounting major from Western Springs, Illinois, and Sidney Parrish, a pre-pharmacy major from Indianapolis, help prune trees at Holliday Park as part of BITS.[/caption]

Gardening and cleaning up Holliday Park on a humid, summer day made for exhausting work, but the two said they loved the opportunity to venture out of the Butler bubble and make a difference in the surrounding Indianapolis community.

“It’s been a lot of fun,” Thomas, a business major from Bay Village, Ohio, said. “I’ve gotten to meet a lot of new people, and it helps involve us in Indianapolis. A lot of us aren’t from the area, so it’s helped to transition us to living here.”

“We’ve connected more as a group,” added Parrish, a pre-pharmacy major from Indianapolis, Indiana. “I came in today not knowing anybody, and now I’ve already made friends with new people in my class.”

Holliday Park Volunteer Coordinator Katie Neill said the 15 Butler volunteers transformed the park’s playground area by pulling weeds, raking mulch, trimming trees, and sweeping sidewalks. With a full-time park staff of four, Neill said she is grateful for the students’ hard work.

“Our playground does need help,” Neill said. “Every year, we try to have a project that shows the students that they’ve made a difference. We depend on volunteers for everything, and we love when the students come out and help keep the park looking nice for the community.”

Sam Thomas, Volunteer Center Events Coordinator and sophomore Political Science and Economics major, spent most of last semester and this summer being called “the BITS guy” as he worked with places like Holliday Park to coordinate volunteer projects for BITS participants.

About 545 volunteers donated their time to 19 agencies across the greater Indianapolis area this year, but Thomas said BITS is about more than just service work.

“The 1,500 hours of community service is awesome,” Thomas said, “but what BITS does is show freshmen that they can make a difference in their new home and community right off the bat during their first week on campus.”

Freshmen Moriah Riggs and Nicolina Cecere said they, too, appreciated their BITS experience at Joy’s House Adult Day Service in Broad Ripple as new Butler Bulldogs looking to get acclimated in Indianapolis.  

Riggs and Cecere spent time playing bingo and conversing with visitors to Joy’s House, an adult day service for community adults with physical and mental disabilities who are no longer able to stay at home safely.

[caption id="attachment_20710" align="alignright" width="400"]Butler volunteers visiting 19 agencies on Tuesday, including Butler volunteers visiting 19 agencies on Tuesday, including Chapel Glen Elementary School.[/caption]

“It’s nice to just talk to the people here,” Cecere, a sociology major from Minneapolis, Minnesota, said. “It’s cool because not only do we get to go out in Indianapolis, but we get to meet other people from our class and the community. I didn’t know any of these people before today.”

Candace Preston, Joy’s House caregiver and Program Manager, said the house guests love the opportunity to meet and interact with the Butler students.

“They love seeing a set of different faces,” Preston said. “They see us Monday through Friday all day, and now they get to spend time with new people. Plus, it benefits the Butler students by showing them that old people aren’t scary or boring. We have some volunteers who come for a couple hours and then decide to come back.”

Thomas said the goal of BITS is to recruit freshman volunteers and encourage them to take advantage of future service opportunities in Indianapolis.

According to Thomas, the Volunteer Center will host a Volunteer Opportunities Fair on September 5 to provide an experience where students can discover new community volunteer options. The fair will include many of the agencies that hosted students during BITS this year.

“Hopefully we’ll get some BITS volunteers signed up for more service activities at the fair,” Thomas said. “This program is mutually beneficial for both students and service agencies in our community.”

 

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Community

COE Efforts Earn National and Local Attention

BY

PUBLISHED ON Apr 22 2014

The good work being done by the Butler University College of Education (COE) has earned national and local attention.

Author Marla Olthof, who spent time at IPS/Butler Laboratory School in 2012 to learn about its outdoor education efforts, has featured the school in her new book, Gardening with Young Children: Second Edition of Hollyhocks and Honeybees.

The Lab School is featured in a two-page spread on pages 106-107, and numerous photographs of Lab School students are displayed throughout the book. The Lab School’s “edible schoolyard” project was funded in part through a $12,000 Dow Promise Grant to Butler. COE students developed the grant proposal and the initial Lab School gardens last spring as part of a “Leadership in Education” course.

The COE collaborates with Indianapolis Public Schools in the Lab School's curriculum development and operations. All faculty hold Butler education degrees.

Also, an early childhood documentary called Little Children, Big Returns, featuring interviews with Dean Ena Shelley and Ted Maple ’01, will air May 8 at 9:00 p.m. on WFYI-1 (Channel 20). Maple is president and CEO of Day Nursery, which operates seven Indianapolis-area child care centers that provide care daily to more than 750 children ages infant to 6 years old.

The documentary delves into the positive business and financial impact properly funded pre-kindergarten programs have on the state. Preview it here: http://youtu.be/sh5SzlOxRm0.

 

Media contact:
Marc Allan
mallan@butler.edu
317-940-9822

 

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Community

Butler Library Faculty Help Shortridge Students with Senior Projects

BY

PUBLISHED ON Jan 16 2014

When seniors at Shortridge Magnet High School start work on their required Senior Service Learning Project, they—and their teachers—will be backed with help from several members of the Butler library faculty.

Under the leadership of Associate Dean of the Libraries Sally Neal, and with the support of Dean Julie Miller, members of the Butler libraries faculty designed and delivered customized workshops for Shortridge faculty, staff, and students to guide them through the research paper that is part of their service learning project. 

On Jan. 10, the Butler library faculty provided a research skills workshop for the Shortridge faculty mentors who are shepherding the Shortridge students through this first-time project.

“The Butler librarians shared some of their best tips for helping students locate the resources they will need for their research,” Neal said.

Strategies shared included how to write a strong thesis statement; identifying terminology/keywords for searching; considering the types of information sources needed (primary, secondary); identifying the information tools available for searching; and, finally, database searching strategies. 

On Jan. 17, the library faculty will present to the Shortridge students directly. The Shortridge students are at various points in the research process, so Butler librarians will present an overview on developing a strong thesis statement and good keywords. They will then work with the students in small groups based on where they are at in their research process. 

“Working with the Shortridge seniors will provide us with the opportunity to learn where they are at in their information literacy/research skill learning and to share with them how building on these skills is necessary not only for college but for lifelong learning,” Neal said. “We are excited about the opportunity to work with students outside Butler who may become Butler students themselves!” 

Butler University faculty collaborated with the Indianapolis Public Schools and community representatives to develop and open Shortridge Magnet High School for Law and Public Policy in 2009. The school offers a rigorous Core 40 college preparatory curriculum for grades 6-12, engagement with social justice issues, and exploration of legal and public service careers.

Butler students and faculty work with Shortridge counterparts in mentoring and tutoring, curriculum planning, after-school programs, professional teacher development, and an Early College Program.

Butler faculty participating in this project with Neal include Sally Childs-Helton, Janice Gustaferro, Tim Hommey, and Teresa Willliams.

Julianne Miranda, director of Butler’s Center for Academic Technology, also is a partner in this venture. She will assist in devising ways in which Information Commons student staff might assist the Shortridge seniors in later stages of preparing their presentations.

The Senior Serving Learning Project is designed to be a culmination of the Shortridge students’ experience at the law and public policy magnet school. Seniors have the opportunity to work with a community organization that specializes in a particular area of law or public policy.

They’re required to complete 80 hours of service that focuses on legal or public policy issues. They then write and present their projects to a panel of judges. Their work is supposed to be at or near college level.

 

Media contact:
Marc Allan
mallan@butler.edu
(317) 940-9822

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Community

Meet the New Butler Aphasia Community

BY

PUBLISHED ON Mar 21 2013

Students playing games using their non-dominant hands, partners working together to find locations on a map, students and their partners creating beautiful works of art—this is the new Butler Aphasia Community.

Members of the Butler Aphasia Community participating in a painting party

About 11 students in Butler University’s Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD) Department began working with Indianapolis residents afflicted with aphasia—impairment of the ability to use or comprehend words, usually as a result of a stroke or other brain injury—on Feb. 14.

The clients come to Butler’s campus to meet with the students in the CSC clinic in Jordan Hall every Thursday evening. The Butler Aphasia Community provides a place for aphasia patients to practice the skills they have learned in therapy following a stroke.

“Usually there’s nowhere to go once therapy has ended, so this allows students to get experience working with patients,” CSD instructor Mary Gospel said. “They essentially help the patients re-enter their lives.”

A person with aphasia may have difficulty retrieving words and names or following a conversation, but their intelligence is basically intact. The Butler Aphasia Community offers student-run entertainment and learning activities that provide opportunities for 18-24 people with chronic aphasia to communicate in a comfortable and encouraging atmosphere.

Butler Art and Physical Education students and faculty also lead and organize activities with the clients.

Gospel received a $3,000 seed grant for the pilot program, as well as $2,250 from the Indiana Campus Compact, and $750 from Butler University, to begin developing the Butler Aphasia Center.

Over the past 10 years, close to 100 Butler CSD students have attended a local aphasia support group’s monthly meetings, to play games and converse with the clients. Gospel usually expects students to attend at least one support group meeting, but many have continued attending.

“The clients are the teachers of our students,” Gospel said.

According to Gospel, it is unusual for communication sciences and disorders undergraduate students to have so much hands-on experience working and interacting directly with clients. The Butler Aphasia Community allows more interaction between clients and students and gives students valuable experience with clients.

Every meeting also includes time for conversation when clients can tell their partners about their lives and their recovery.

“Clients’ honesty and bravery has added a new dimension to the students’ education,” Gospel said. “In return, students have given back by attending clients’ knitting groups, taking valentines to their nursing homes, and having dinner with them.”

Media contact:
Molly Kordas
(708) 691-8789
mkordas@butler.edu

 

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Community

Six from Butler Named to IBJ's 40 Under 40

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PUBLISHED ON Feb 05 2013

Butler is well represented in the Indianapolis Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2013, with five graduates and the director of the University’s Center for Urban Ecology among those selected.

The honorees with Butler ties are:

-Linda Broadfoot ’98, executive director of the Indianapolis Public Schools Education Foundation.

-Tim Carter, director of Butler’s Center for Urban Ecology.

-Claudia Fuentes MBA ’07, Marion County treasurer.

-Chris Gahl ’00, vice president, Marketing and Communications, Visit Indy.

-Laura Henderson ’00, executive director, Growing Places Indy.

-Andrew Held MBA ’08, president, PCD Capital Group LLC.

To read their stories, go to http://www.ibj.com/forty-under-40 and click on their photos.

Criteria for selection include the level of success a nominee has achieved in his or her chosen field, their accomplishments in the community, and the likelihood the nominee will stay in Indianapolis and build on those achievements.

 

Media contact:
Marc Allan
mallan@butler.edu
(317) 940-9822

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