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Butler University Expands with Purchase of CTS Campus

BY

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
rstern@butler.edu
317-940-9257

CTS
CampusCommunity

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
Community

Visiting Writing Series Announces Spring Speakers

BY

PUBLISHED ON Dec 04 2017

Series begins February 1 with Kazim Ali.

Novelist/biographer Edmund White and Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Louise Glück will be among the speakers this spring in Butler University’s Vivian S. Delbrook Visiting Writers Series.

The series begins February 1 with poet/novelist Kazim Ali and continues with novelist Ali Eteraz (February 15), poet Danez Smith (March 22), White (April 3), and Glück (April 18). Times and locations are below.

All events in the spring 2018 series are free and open to the public without tickets. For more information, call 317-940-9861.

More information about each speaker follows.

Kazim Ali
Thursday, February 1, 7:30 PM
Eidson-Duckwall Recital Hall

Kazim Ali’s books include several volumes of poetry, including Sky Ward, winner of the Ohioana Book Award in Poetry; The Far Mosque, winner of Alice James Books’ New England/New York Award; The Fortieth DayAll One’s Blue; and the cross-genre text Bright Felon. He has received an Individual Excellence Award from the Ohio Arts Council, and his poetry has been featured in Best American Poetry.  His novels include The Secret Room: A String Quartet, and among his books of essays is Fasting for Ramadan: Notes from a Spiritual Practice.

Ali is an Associate Professor of Creative Writing and Comparative Literature at Oberlin College. His new book of poems, Inquisition, and a new hybrid memoir, Silver Road: Essays, Maps & Calligraphies, are scheduled for release in 2018.

Ali Eteraz
Thursday, February 15, 7:30 PM
Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Ali Eteraz is the author of the debut novel Native Believer, a New York TimesBook Review Editors’ Choice selection. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed memoir Children of Dust, which was selected as a New Statesman Book of the Year, won the Nautilus Book Award Gold, and was featured on PBS with Tavis Smiley, NPR with Terry Gross, C-SPAN2, and numerous international outlets. O, The Oprah Magazine, called it “a picaresque journey” and the book was long-listed for the Asian American Writers Workshop Award.

Previously, he wrote the short story collection Falsipedies and Fibsiennes. Other short stories have appeared in The Adirondack ReviewstorySouthChicago Quarterly Review, and Forge Journal.

Eteraz is an accomplished essayist and has been spotlighted by Time Magazine and Pageturner, the literary blog of The New Yorker.

Danez Smith
Thursday, March 22, 7:30 PM
Eidson-Duckwall Recital Hall

 

Danez Smith is the author of Don’t Call Us Dead (2017), finalist for the National Book Award in poetry; [insert] Boy (2014), winner of the Lambda Literary Award and the Kate Tufts Discovery Award; and the chapbook hands on ya knees. Their writing has appeared in many magazines and journals, such as PoetryPloughshares, Beloit Poetry Journal, and Kinfolks. Smith is a 2011 Individual World Poetry Slam finalist and the reigning two-time Rustbelt Individual Champion and was on the 2014 championship team Sad Boy Supper Club.

 

In 2014, they were the festival director for the Brave New Voices International Youth Poetry Slam and were awarded a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry fellowship from the Poetry Foundation.

Edmund White
Tuesday, April 3, 7:30 PM
Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Edmund White is America’s preeminent gay writer. In biography, social history, travel writing, journalism, the short story, and the novel, this prolific and versatile author has chronicled the gay experience in the United States from the closeted 1950s through the AIDS crisis and beyond.

His first novel, Forgetting Elena, published in 1973, is the story of an amnesia victim, set at a stylish resort reminiscent of Fire Island. With the classic coming-of-age tale A Boy’s Own Story, White cemented a place for himself—and for gay fiction—in the cultural consciousness. His celebrated fiction also includes Nocturnes for the King of NaplesCaracoleThe Beautiful Room Is Empty (winner of the 1988 Lambda Literary Award), The Farewell SymphonyThe Married ManFanny: A FictionHotel de Dream, and Jack Holmes and His Friend. His latest is Our Young Man.

White has been involved in the gay rights movement since the Stonewall riots in New York City in 1969 and has acted as one of its canniest observers. His pioneering The Joy of Gay Sex: An Intimate Guide for Gay Men to the Pleasures of a Gay Lifestyle was published in 1977 and served as a national coming-out announcement for the entire gay community.

White has also made his mark as a highly accomplished biographer. Genet: A Biography is recognized as a definitive work on writer and playwright Jean Genet, and in 1993 it won both the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Lambda Literary Award. White also authored the well-received Marcel Proust and Rimbaud: The Double Life of a Rebel. His memoir Inside a Pearl: My Years in Paris recounts the fifteen years he spent living there—one of the most productive and creative phases in his career.

White is a regular contributor to The Times Literary Supplement, The New York Times Book Review, and Vanity Fair, and is a member of both the American Academy of Arts and Letters and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Louise Glück
Wednesday, April 18, 7:30 PM
Atherton Union, Reilly Room

Louise Glück is the author of twelve books of poetry and served as the U.S. Poet Laureate from 2003-2004. In 1993 Glück won the Pulitzer Prize for Poetry for her collection The Wild Iris. She is the recipient of fellowships from the Rockefeller and Guggenheim Foundations and from the National Endowment for the Arts. Other honors include the Academy of American Poets Prize, the William Carlos Williams Award, the Bobbitt National Poetry Prize, the Ambassador Book Award, and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and her most recent book of poems Faithful and Virtuous Nightxs received the 2014 National Book Award. Her book of essays Proofs and Theories: Essays on Poetry (1994) was awarded the PEN/Martha Albrand Award for Nonfiction, and her book Vita Nova (2001) won the first New YorkerReaders Award. In 2001 Yale University recognized her lifetime achievement by awarding her its Bollingen Prize for Poetry.

Glück is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters and currently serves as the Rosenkranz Writer-in-Residence in the Department of English at Yale University.

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

Community

Visiting Writing Series Announces Spring Speakers

The series begins February 1 with poet/novelist Kazim Ali and continues with novelist Ali Eteraz (February 15), Barry (March 1), poet Danez Smith (March 22), White (April 3), and Glück (April 18). Times and locations are below.

Dec 04 2017 Read more
Community

Butler Alums Make a Successful Hand-Off

BY

PUBLISHED ON Dec 01 2017

Bruce Scifres replaces Ed Tinder at the CYO.

When Ed Tinder ’71 decided to retire as Executive Director of the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis—a position he held for 33 years—he hoped someone with excellent credentials would want to take over.

He got his wish when Bruce Scifres ’79 was hired. That’s Bruce Scifres who coached local high school football for 37 years, winning seven state championships in 27 years at Roncalli High School. The Bruce Scifres who was inducted into the Butler Athletic Hall of Fame in 2007.

“That a coach like this, as prominent as he is, was interested in this position pumped my chest up because it shows that what you tried to build over 33 years is attractive,” Tinder said, sitting across from Scifres. “There were 80 applicants for the job. When somebody like Bruce, a Hall of Famer, applies, you feel like the job is pretty important.”

Tinder was doubly happy because Scifres is a Butler guy.

“I think there’s something to the Butler Way,” Tinder said. “Being part of a community like Butler for the years you’re in school, I think you adopt an outlook on life, about how you’re going to lead your life, in every aspect. You adopt an attitude of helping people and service. That maybe got our feet in the door as Head Football Coach at a high school or Executive Director of CYO. It’s just the mindset on life, the attitude on life we got while we were at Butler.”

*

By his sophomore year at Butler, Ed Tinder knew he wanted to teach and coach. He credits his Butler coaches—Tony Hinkle, Bill Sylvester, Don Benbow, and others—with that. “These were individuals I just wanted to be like. I wanted to help people.”

After graduating with a major in Education, Tinder was hired at Roncalli High School, where he taught Social Studies, World History, Economics, and Drivers’ Education for nine years and was Head Football Coach from 1977–1979. (He took over from Bill Kuntz ’50, who played football at Butler, and his successor at Roncalli as Head Football Coach was Bill Kuntz’s son Bill Jr. ’75, another Butler grad.)

In spring 1980, Tinder moved to the CYO. He worked for four years under Bill Kuntz Sr., then became Executive Director.

Tinder said 15,000-20,000 young people in third grade through high school participate in CYO activities, which include 13 sports, music competitions, science fairs, hobby fairs, a chess program, and more. The Executive Director oversees a $5 million budget and answers to a 21-member board.

“You are, to a large extent, creating the climate in which all the activities are going to take place,” he said. “This is how we’re going to do things. So you take a little bit of that outlook on life gained through your education and your time spent at Butler University in the classroom and on the athletic fields and that becomes part of you when you administer a program like CYO.”

Tinder said he loved the job because people “are invested, and they’re emotional. That’s where I got my fuel for continuing for 33 years, to be able to work with people and interact through those kinds of emotions. I enjoyed it immensely. I miss a great deal of it, but you know when it’s time to move on.”

*

Bruce Scifres, who took over in June at the CYO, said he sees his role as a continuation of what Tinder established.

“I love it here,” he said, “and Ed has been amazing in helping. He’s answered tons of questions. Beyond that, if a Director is judged by the people he has hired to work for the organization, Ed Tinder was a master of his trade. The culture he developed here I feel blessed to be a part of.”

Scifres started at Butler as a Business Administration major—”It took a second-semester Accounting class to help me decide I didn’t like certain aspects of that”—and finished by majoring in Social Studies and Education.

A year after graduation, he was hired at Roncalli. He spent three years there, then moved over to public schools for seven years. In 1990, he returned to Roncalli as the Football Coach and Social Studies teacher. (He later taught weight training and was Assistant Dean of Students.) Part of his duties were Field Manager of the school’s football stadium, where he spent most Sundays. “I saw a lot of CYO games,” he said.

He also watched plenty of the games in which his two sons and two daughters played.

Scifres said he was attracted to the CYO job because “we’re doing something worthwhile. We’re doing something to help other people. That’s why people get into education. What other job could I do at this point in my life that would have as much of an influence on young people?”

Scifres turned 60 in February, and he knows he doesn’t have 33 years to devote to the CYO. But he said he plans to give his all to the role.

“As a coach, part of your job is to teach kids how to play a game—strategy, get them in shape, organize, practice hard every day, and teach them how to win,” he said. “But I’ve always thought the more important part was to teach kids how to live their lives. They should strive each day to give their best to be the person God created them to be and make their parents proud and do all the things they have an opportunity to do through athletics.”

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

Community

Butler Alums Make a Successful Hand-Off

When Ed Tinder ’71 decided to retire as Executive Director of the Catholic Youth Organization (CYO) in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis—a position he held for 33 years—he hoped someone with excellent credentials would want to take over. He got his wish when Bruce Scifres ’79 was hired.

Dec 01 2017 Read more
CampusCommunity

Andre Lacy Dies in Motorcycle Accident In Africa

BY

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
mallan@butler.edu
317-940-9822

CampusCommunity

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
AcademicsCommunity

Butler Business Consulting Group Posts Impressive Numbers

BY

PUBLISHED ON Nov 15 2017

To tell the story of the Butler Business Consulting Group (BBCG), it helps to look at the numbers.

The BBCG, which helps businesses solve their challenges, has worked with 94 clients, including Roche Diagnostics, Defenders, Hitachi, Eskenazi Health Foundation, and MJ Insurance.

Trent Ritzenthaler, left, discussed the 10-year anniversary of the BBCG with Inside Indiana Business host Gerry Dick.

It’s generated over $10 million in revenue— $7 million of which has been returned to help continue to fund academic programs in the Lacy School of Business.

About 192 Lacy School of Business student analysts have had an internship with the BBCG, and they have participated in over 300 projects with client companies representing 40 different industries.

And now, the BBCG has a number of its own to celebrate. The group is marking 10 years of serving the Indiana business community, Butler University students, and the University this year.

Executive Director Trent Ritzenthaler is proud of those numbers. He’s even more proud of the stories behind the numbers.

‘A great business model’

One of Ritzenthaler’s favorites to tell is about the BBCG’s longtime relationship with Estes Design and Manufacturing, a family-run sheet metal fabricator on Indianapolis’ Eastside and one of the consulting group’s longest-standing clients.

In 2008, Ritzenthaler said, Estes approached the BBCG about increasing sales of its products, which include metal fabricated mailboxes and metal cabinets. Estes bends the metal needed to manufacture those products.

The BBCG did a sales-effectiveness project for Estes, which led to the consulting group serving as Estes’ outsourced marketing team. BBCG professionals and student-interns worked with the company on a new website, blog, and marketing campaign. As a result, Estes hired BBCG as its marketing department—a role the consulting group continues to play.

That was just the beginning.

Over the years, the BBCG has guided Estes through potential acquisitions of other companies, provided outsourced financial services support, and even provided a short-term loan from the BBCG Investment Fund to purchase a piece of equipment integral to the growth of their operations.

“We’ve helped bring a lot of positive change to that company in a lot of ways, and they’ve been a great partner in doing so, allowing our professional staff and student analysts to play tangible roles in bringing about those positive changes,” Ritzenthaler said.

Estes Design President Tim Estes agreed.

“The professionalism they have exhibited and the whole model of using interns, whether they be undergrad or grad students, has been great,” he said. “They’ve got a great business model. I tell Trent all the time that I would have killed to have done something like that in college and been able to get that experience.”

The beginning

The BBCG got its start in 2005 thanks to a $22 million grant from the Lilly Endowment Inc. to help accelerate experiential learning.

A portion of the funds were used to create what was initially called the Butler Business Accelerator. With the money came a mission: Help Indiana companies that have been in business for five years and were generating between $5 million and $50 million in sales grow, prosper, hire more people, achieve their goals, and stop Indiana’s brain drain.

The Accelerator started serving clients in 2007 and then became the BBCG in 2012.

Ritzenthaler said the BBCG provides benefits not only to its corporate clients, but to Butler (both by earning money and by familiarizing companies with Butler and its programs) and to Butler students (for internships and experiences that help them start and advance their careers). He called it “the cyclical positive effect of those things on each other.”

As an example, he cited the BBCG’s work with MJ Insurance.

Initially, the insurance company signed on for help with marketing strategy and sales processes design. Later, the partnership expanded to include digital strategy development. As that was occurring, MJ’s Chief Operating Officer joined the BBCG Consulting Advisory Board, MJ donated money to name Butler’s new student run captive insurance program, MJ hired several graduates from the Lacy School of Business, and an MJ representative joined Butler’s Davey Risk Management Program Board of Advisors.

And in October, a member of Butler’s Information Technology staff moved over to MJ full time to serve as their new Chief Information Officer.

“You’re helping students, who are helping clients, who are hiring students and donating back to the university and helping academic programs,” Ritzenthaler said. “That is a dynamic set of positive changes for all of the stakeholders involved.”

How students benefit

Kate Allen ’15 interned with the BBCG as a student and worked on at least five projects. Allen said she was given great responsibility and autonomy. She had three other internships while at Butler, and the BBCG, “was a totally unique environment.”

Allen now works in finance for Eli Lilly and Co. She credits her experience at the BBCG with helping her get ahead.

“Being able to use my interpersonal skills and problem-solving skills in the BBCG and then apply that to my first full-time job has been really helpful,” she said.

 

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

AcademicsCommunity

Butler Business Consulting Group Posts Impressive Numbers

To tell the story of the Butler Business Consulting Group (BBCG), it helps to look at the numbers.

The BBCG, which helps businesses solve their challenges, has worked with 94 clients, including Roche Diagnostics, Defenders, Hitachi, Eskenazi Health Foundation, and MJ Insurance.

Nov 15 2017 Read more
Arts & CultureCommunity

Butler Community Arts School Offers Piano For Autistic Students

BY

PUBLISHED ON Nov 08 2017

Inside a Lilly Hall practice room, a father is sitting on the piano bench next to his 6-year-old son, encouraging the boy to look at the sheet music and play.

“Play this one, play this one,” Dad says, pointing. “Play a ‘D.’”

The boy plays the note.

“And there’s that sharp,” says the piano teacher, who’s sitting to the side. “See that sharp there?”

The boy plays the next note. “Yes!” the teacher says.

Then the boy, who is autistic, stops and lets out a howl of sadness, as if he doesn’t want to play anymore. He hugs his father and turns away from the piano. Then, just as quickly, he’s back around, his hands on the keys.

“Play,” his father says. “‘D.’”

The entire 45-minute lesson takes place in fits and starts like this, with the teacher and the boy’s father coaxing him through pieces of a song. As soon as he’s finished, the boy climbs from the piano bench and heads to a chair to watch videos on a phone. His father directs him back to the bench.

The boy started taking piano lessons in the summer after his parents found a flyer in a doctor’s office advertising piano lessons for children on the autism spectrum. The teacher, Marge Lucas ’97 MM ’00, has been offering these lessons through the Butler Community Arts School since January.

 

 

Lucas believes music is highly successful in the development of neural circuits for cognitive processing, and she has developed a method of music instruction—honed at Butler and in graduate studies at Indiana University-Bloomington—that is applied to the individual learning style and personality of the student.

Her method involves a combination of letters, colors, and sounds that help students process the information needed to play music while developing motor and language skills.

She explains it like this: “For children with autism, they have overconnectivity and underconnectivity. The ones I get are usually already gifted in music, and they have absolute pitch. So their right hemisphere is overconnected. The left hemisphere is language. So they’re overconnected in spatial skills. But they are underconnected in language. Therefore, they can’t express themselves. But if you develop their musical ability and teach them according to the natural progressions of scale degrees and chords, their brain is wired to hear that.”

Lucas, who has Asperger syndrome, says she can understand her students, whereas other people don’t. And she says she has seen her methods work. One student, who started out “almost non-verbal and definitely in his own world,” developed the ability, after eight years of lessons, to do music theory on a graduate level. Another, a 12-year-old she’s been teaching for three years, went from banging on the low notes of the piano to being able to play the title theme from The Legend of Zelda video game.

With the 6-year-old, she had an extraordinary breakthrough two weeks later when the boy began to get distraught. His father said something to him, and the boy responded, “I’m tired.”

“His parents looked at each other, stunned.” Lucas said. “They said they had never heard him say anything like that ever before. Instead of a wail came a short sentence. It made my day.”

The father of the 6-year-old student says Lucas’ methods do work. His son practices piano every day.

“My son is very intelligent,” he says, “but it’s a different kind of intelligence.”

Butler Community Arts School Director Karen Thickstun says she regularly gets calls from parents whose children have autism, asking if she had a teacher who works with students who have learning differences.

“Most of the time, I had to say no,” Thickstun says, “because our teachers are primarily college students and they’re not yet trained to teach more than the traditional approaches to teaching.”

When Thickstun did offer a referral, it was to Lucas, who has been teaching privately for years. Last year, she talked to Lucas about devoting a day to teaching at Butler. Lucas’ presence proved so popular that she is now at Butler for more than a day each week, teaching six to 10 students.

“She’s one of the very few piano teachers in the state—maybe in the Midwest—who’s specializing in developing piano materials to reach autistic children,” Thickstun says.

Lucas’ presence also benefits Butler students, who can watch what she’s doing. Thickstun says the skills Lucas has are ones that teachers are going to need to know more and more.

Thickstun says that what Lucas does requires patience, but also the ability to think differently.

“She has to get into their mind and find different materials that fit,” Thickstun says. “In the students I see her work with, the materials are different for each child. She’s very much trying to figure out that particular child. Marge has been a great addition to the Butler Community Arts School. Part of our mission is access to the arts for everybody, and this is a demographic we have typically not been able to serve.”

The Butler Community Arts School is grateful for the generous support of the National Endowment for the Arts, the Indiana Arts Commission, the Indianapolis Foundation of Central Indiana Community Foundation, the Summer Youth Program Fund, and the Christel DeHaan Family Foundation.

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

Arts & CultureCommunity

Director In The Making: Julia Hren

BY Hannah Hartzell ’17

PUBLISHED ON Oct 12 2017

The Butler senior participated in the production of ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.’

Things move swiftly in the theater world. That’s something Julia Hren ’18 can attest to. Last spring, the Theatre Production and Strategic Communications major was recommended for an internship at the Indianapolis Reparatory Theater (IRT).

Risa Brainin, the director of the production The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time,needed an assistant. Hren said she was interested.

Julia Hren in the lobby of the Indiana Repertory Theatre. She interned with the IRT during ‘The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.’

Three days later, Hren was sitting in on auditions. It only got busier from there.

“There were various Skype meetings with designers [over the summer],” Hren said. “Then, everyone got together to talk about preplans for the set and costumes…. It was very fast paced.”

Rehearsals began in late August and continued until opening night on September 22. (The show ran through October 14.) Somehow, Hren balanced the nine-hour-long rehearsal days with a full load of classes at Butler.

The experience came with struggles though—like a relapse of mononucleosis. Still, Hren said it was all worth it.

“It is one of the most touching shows I’ve ever read or seen,” she said. “When I first read the script, I actually cried. It’s so wonderful.”

The Incident, which won the 2015 Tony for Best Play, tells the story of an autistic teenager, Christopher, who witnesses a mysterious event and goes on a quest for the answers.

“The show is really moving,” she said. Perhaps even more so to Hren, who has been a part of the production from the beginning.

“[The cast and crew] really wanted me to get something out of this,” she said. “In the end, it was a wonderful process and one of the best experiences of my life.”

She also feels more prepared for life after Butler.

“Before, I would look at the IRT from the outside and think it looked cool. Now, I know how it functions … and the way [it] functions is incredible. The whole show came together in about a month.”

So, what’s the talented senior up to in the coming months? Probably recovering from mono and planning for graduation.

“My dream job is to do PR and advertising for a theater,” she said, before adding: “I also would also love to direct.”

Arts & CultureCommunity

Director In The Making: Julia Hren

Things move swiftly in the theater world. That’s something Julia Hren ’18 can attest to. Last spring, the Theatre Production and Strategic Communications major was recommended for an internship at the Indianapolis Reparatory Theater (IRT).

Oct 12 2017 Read more
AcademicsCommunity

Wherefore Art Thou, Juliet Blue? In a Butler Chemistry Lab

BY

PUBLISHED ON Oct 02 2017

A “happy accident” leads to a scientific discovery.

In a couple of weeks, some chemists in Verona, Italy, are going to find out what’s been happening in a Butler University Chemistry lab, and they’re going to be grateful.

They’re going to be notified that junior Ben Dawson, working with Chemistry Professor Anne Wilson this past summer, has replicated a pigment that matched a color called Juliet blue that the Italian chemists had discovered on historical artifacts.

“I think they’ll be excited that somebody’s actually making these,” Wilson said. “People have been talking about these pigments but not making them.”

The Italian scientists’ discovery of Juliet blue goes back to 2010. They laid out the problem in a paper they published: Their museum had placed several ancient flints, used for making arrowheads, in storage. They had put the flints in a drawer, on rubber mats to keep them from breaking. When they opened the drawer, they found that a chemical reaction had occurred. The flints, which were gray, had turned blue—a color the chemists would later call Juliet blue.

The chemists thought the color on the flints was derived from a volatile organic component that was coming from the rubber mats, and that the culprit was a stabilizer that’s added to keep the rubber from falling apart over time.

Dr. Greg Smith, the Otto N. Frenzel III Senior Conservation Scientist at the Indianapolis Museum of Art, read the Italians’ paper and gave a copy to Wilson, asking if she thought someone at Butler might want to try to figure out a synthesis for Juliet blue. She thought that would be a great summer project for a student, so she had Dawson try to make the pigment. She paid him with an annual grant the Chemistry Department receives from Eli Lilly and Co. to do synthetic chemistry work.

“Initially, we were not having a lot of success” trying to re-create the chemical reaction that caused the discoloration, Wilson said. “Then Ben left out some things over the weekend, and some of his indicator plates had turned blue.”

Juliet blue.

“It was a very happy accident,” Wilson said.

Dawson confirmed that the way this blue pigment occurred on the surface of the flints was probably due to a combination of air oxidation, coupled with some contamination from the compound in the rubber mats. And he able to make additional quantities of the pigment.

“It’s a beautiful blue,” Wilson said. “It looks very Disney. It’s beautiful. It’s a great blue. It’s a lot of fun to be doing this and to see these great colors.”

Although reproducing Juliet blue is essentially an academic exercise, Wilson said, it could have practical applications. Butler Chemistry professors and students have done several projects with the Indianapolis Museum of Art on artworks that have faded over the centuries. Perhaps, Wilson said, this summer’s finding could be a step in figuring out how to treat, and possibly restore, artifacts that have been damaged.

“It’s exciting when you get scientists from different areas together and they start talking and trading ideas,” she said. “I think we’re very fortunate to be this close to the lab at the IMA. I think we’re very fortunate to be able to try things.”

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

AcademicsCommunity

Wherefore Art Thou, Juliet Blue? In a Butler Chemistry Lab

Chemists in Verona, Italy, will find out what’s been happening in a Butler University Chemistry lab.

Oct 02 2017 Read more
CommunityPeople

Butler Presents Eight Alumni Awards

BY

PUBLISHED ON Sep 27 2017

Honorees to receive their recognition during Homecoming Weekend.

Butler University will hold the annual Alumni Awards Recognition Program for extraordinary professional achievement and service to the University and their communities on Friday, October 20, at 6:00 PM in the Howard L. Schrott Center for the Arts.

This year’s recipients are:

  • Butler Medal: Norman W. Wilkens ’57
  • Butler Service Medal: Dr. Robert Grechesky
  • Joseph Irwin Sweeney Award: Becky L. Ruby-Wojtowicz ’05
  • Hilton Ultimus Brown Award: Michael Hole ’08
  • Robert Todd Duncan Award: Wayne C. Burris ’77
  • Katharine Merrill Graydon Award: Kevin J. McDevitt ’77
  • Ovid Butler Society Mortar Award: Karen (Dietz) Colglazier ’70 MA’74 and John W. Colglazier
  • Foundation Award: Branden ’02 and Jenn Renner

Registration for the awards ceremony and all Homecoming activities can be made online at butler.edu/homecoming. More about the recipients and their awards follows.

Norman W. Wilkens ’57 (The Butler Medal)

Norman W. Wilkens, President, Wilkens Consulting LLC, has been active in marketing, advertising, education, and public relations in Indianapolis for over sixty years. A 1957 graduate of Butler University with a Bachelor of Science in Radio and Television, Wilkens began his career as an announcer and floor director/writer at WTTV (Channel 4). He joined WXLW radio as Continuity Director in 1958. Four years later, he joined Ruben Advertising in its Public Relations Division.

The next steps of his career included advertising and marketing in leading Indianapolis firms including Handley & Miller and Caldwell, Larkin, Sidener, and Van Riper. At that juncture, he and others formed McQuade, Wilkens, Bloomhorst Advertising.

Wilkens became a principal in Carlson & Co. Advertising as President/CEO. Seven years later, he merged the agency into Montgomery, Zuckerman & Davis (MZD) as Vice President and Account Supervisor. He left MZD to form an in­house agency for Standard Management Corporation, an international insurance holding company, in 1993.

In 1996, he spun the agency out of its in-house status and it became an independent firm under the banner Advertising Visions Inc. Five years later, the name was changed to Ambient Communications. In 2004, he dissolved the agency to serve as an independent marketing consultant emphasizing health care. Today, that entity is known as Wilkens Consulting LLC.

Wilkens has held teaching posts at Butler University (for 21 years), Indiana University, and Indiana Wesleyan University, as an instructor in broadcast writing, advertising, and public relations. His father, Dr. Irvin Wilkens, received his pre-medical degree from the old Butler Campus in lrvington.

The Butler Medal, the highest honor conferred by the Butler University Alumni Association, recognizes individuals for a lifetime of distinguished service to either Butler or their local community while at the same time achieving a distinguished career in their chosen profession.

Robert Grechesky (The Butler Service Medal)

Dr. Robert Grechesky is Emeritus Professor of Music and Director of Bands at Butler University. He taught conducting, music education courses, wind band history and literature, and euphonium, and he conducted the Butler Symphonic Band and Wind Ensemble on four European tours. In 2014, he retired from active teaching after 41 years of service at Butler.

Grechesky received his Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from Rutgers University, and his Master of Music and doctorate in Music Education and Conducting from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

He was named a Sagamore of the Wabash, the highest civilian award that the State of Indiana gives, by Governor Mike Pence, and in 2016 he was honored by his election to the Butler University Athletic Hall of Fame. He is the recipient of the A. Frank Martin Award, a national award given by Kappa Kappa Psi for outstanding service to college bands. Grechesky was named 2010 “Outstanding University Music Educator” by the Indiana Music Educators Association. He was selected as the 2010–2011 recipient of the James B. Calvert Lifetime Achievement Award by the Indiana Wind Symphony, and was named Outstanding Professor by the Butler Mortar Board.

He will be awarded the Butler Service Medal, which recognizes emeriti faculty or retired faculty and staff (alumnus or non-alumnus) for a lifetime of distinguished service to Butler University and to the community.

Becky L. Ruby-Wojtowicz ’05 (Joseph Irwin Sweeney Alumni Service Award)

Becky Ruby-Wojtowicz graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Arts Administration and a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism (Public Relations).

After two years as Individual Giving Manager at the Indianapolis Zoo, and two years in a similar position at Wishard Health Foundation, she left to run lilly lane, a company she started in January 2008 to provide flowers, event-planning, and other services. (Her first client was a Butler alumnus.) lilly lane has now provided wedding flowers to over 600 couples, as well as corporate and non-profit clients.

Ruby-Wojtowicz was a four-year member of the Young Alumni Board, including one year as vice president and one as president, and has taught at Butler in the Arts Administration program.

She and her husband, Justin, have a daughter, Claire.

The award she is receiving is named for Joseph Irwin Sweeney, whose student career was cut short when he suffered an untimely death in summer 1900, prior to his senior year. It goes to a graduate who completed their degree within the past 15 years who has contributed significant service to the University.

Michael Hole ’08 (Hilton Ultimus Brown Alumni Achievement Award)

Dr. Michael Hole is a pediatrician and social entrepreneur who started his career as a case manager focused on child trafficking before founding two international development campaigns: Power of Children, which started a primary school for 350 students in post-conflict Uganda, and BeHaiti, which helped Partners in Health develop and distribute a vitamin-enriched food treating 50,000 malnourished youth yearly and support an orphanage for 64 disabled, abused, or homeless children abandoned during Haiti’s 2010 earthquake.

He completed residency at Harvard Medical School, where he trained at Boston Children’s Hospital, the world’s No. 1 children’s hospital as ranked by U.S. News & World Report, and Boston Medical Center, New England’s largest safety-net hospital. He earned an MD and MBA from Stanford University with concentrations in public management, community health, and social innovation, and he holds a Bachelor of Science cum laude with honors in Biology and Spanish from Butler University, where he was a Lilly Scholar and the 2008 Top Male Student.

In 2016, he co-launched StreetCred, an organization at the intersection of government and health systems helping low-income families build assets while they wait in pediatric clinics and hospitals. Featured by The Boston Globe and CBS News, StreetCred has returned more than $1.5 million in tax refunds to vulnerable families, which placed Hole on Forbes Magazine‘s 30 Under 30 list of social entrepreneurs.

The Hilton Ultimus Brown Alumni Achievement Award honors alumni who have exited the University within the past 15 years and have made major contributions to a career field or to society.

Kevin McDevitt ’77 (Katharine Merrill Graydon Alumni Service Award)

Kevin McDevitt, Senior Vice President-Wealth Management for UBS Financial Services Inc., graduated from Butler University with a degree in mathematics and went on to earn his MBA in finance from the University of Detroit. He is a Certified Financial Planner and is a member of the Investment Management Consulting Association. He is a member of UBS’s distinguished Director’s Club, which recognizes the top Financial Advisors in the firm. McDevitt has worked for UBS for 30 years.

McDevitt is the current President and a founding member of the Butler University Detroit Alumni Chapter and has been a member of the Ovid Butler Society for the past five years. He also was a supporter of the Campaign for Hinkle Fieldhouse.

In the Detroit community, he has served as a former Introduction Leader of Landmark Education, past President of Marian Athletic Club, and member of the Finance Committee at St. Ireneaus Church.

McDevitt was a four-year letter-winner as a running back on Butler’s football teams, 1973–1976. He led the NCAA (all divisions) in kickoff returns in 1975, and he still holds Butler’s career record for kickoff returns. He won the conference scoring title in 1974, and he became the first Butler football player to score 100 points in a season in 1976. In 2003, he was inducted into the Butler Athletic Hall of Fame.

He and his beloved late wife, Kathy ’78, met at Butler. They have four children, including daughter Shannon, who is a senior at Butler this fall. Shannon is a Health Science and Business major and is a member of the Butler’s Women’s Soccer Team. In 2016, she was named to the All-BIG EAST Conference Second Team.

He is receiving the Katharine Merrill Graydon Alumni Service Award, which is presented to a graduate who received their degree more than 15 years prior to the presentation of the award in recognition of outstanding service to Butler University.

Wayne C. Burris ’77 (Robert Todd Duncan Alumni Achievement Award)

As Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Roche Diagnostics Corp.—a position he has held since 1996—Wayne Burris uses his strong background in U.S. and international accounting and finance experience dealing with business and reporting issues to provide strategic and tactical advice for the many Roche businesses.

He was a founding member of the Roche Diagnostics-North American STAR initiative that generated over $100 million in purchasing savings and has since become a global initiative, and he served on the Diagnostics Investment Committee tasked with deciding how to allocate and approve over $500 million in annual capital investments.

Prior to his current position, Burris was Head of Global Finance for Patient Care and, before that, was Vice President of Finance. Before joining Roche Diagnostics in 1986, he was Senior Manager for Price Waterhouse LLP, focusing on clients in the financial service industry and on global healthcare manufacturers in diagnostics, orthopedics, and pharmaceuticals.

Burris, a Certified Public Accountant, is a native of Indianapolis. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and Finance from Butler University, where he was voted one of the Top Ten Male Students and was named the Outstanding Male Student of his graduating class. He was a recipient of an Ernst & Young scholarship in accounting, and in 2002, he was inducted into the Butler University Athletic Hall of Fame.

He is being honored with the Robert Todd Duncan Alumni Achievement Award, which is presented to a Butler graduate who received their degree more than 15 years prior to the presentation of the award in recognition of outstanding contributions in a career field or to society.

Karen (Dietz) Colglazier ’70 MA ’74 and John W. Colglazier (Ovid Butler Society Mortar Award)

Karen and John, “Bud,” Colglazier have been Ovid Butler Society members since 2002. Karen joined the OBS Executive Committee in 2008 and served as the chairperson for three years. She also served on the Butler Parent-Faculty Council (2002–2003) and in the fall of 2005 joined the Board of Visitors for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, which she is still a member of today.

Karen, an Indianapolis native, spent her childhood playing in the sand under the bleachers and running the ramps of Hinkle Fieldhouse, rolling down the grassy hill onto the football field, and sledding behind the Butler Bowl. Her father, Bob Dietz ’41, was an All-American basketball player at Butler and long-time assistant Men’s Basketball coach to Tony Hinkle from 1947–1970. Karen attended Butler for her undergraduate and graduate degrees, receiving her Bachelor of Arts in History/Political Science and her Master of Arts in American History.

In the summer of 1974 she was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship for study and travel in India, an achievement she credits to the rigorous curriculum of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Karen taught social studies in Indianapolis Public Schools and Hamilton Southeastern High School, and was a Title IX girl’s tennis coach, being a part of the first high school girls’ tennis program in IPS in 1971.

Bud is owner and President of Don Hinds Ford in Fishers, Indiana. He is a 1967 graduate of Indiana University Kelley School of Business and a member of Sigma Chi Fraternity.

The Colglaziers are the parents of three children—sons John and Mark and daughter Carrie. John and Mark are part of the management team at Don Hinds Ford. Carrie, a member of the Butler Women’s Soccer team studying in the pre-PA program, was killed by a drunk driver June 6, 2003. In 2006, Bud and Karen established an endowed scholarship in Carrie’s memory to benefit a Butler Women’s Soccer player who best exemplifies the Butler Way.

The Mortar Award, created in 1995, honors one person or couple each year who personifies the Butler spirit by demonstrating great vision, leadership, and generosity to Butler University.

Branden ’02 and Jenn Renner (The Foundation Award)

Branden and Jenn Renner were one of the first pledges to the new Butler Andre B. Lacy School of Business building, and their contribution will result in a conference room being named for them.

Brandon, who played football for Butler, graduated in 2002 with a Bachelor of Science in Finance. He is now Associate Vice President, Investments & Financial Advisor for Renner Masariu Wealth Management of Raymond James—one of the youngest vice presidents in Raymond James’ 50-year history. He has also been a consecutive five-year winner of the Achiever’s Club Award and has been nominated as one of Five Star Professional’s Top Wealth Advisors in Indianapolis.

He is a member of the Indiana Motor Truck Association’s Executive Committee and the chairman of their Allied Committee, past President of the Butler Young Alumni Board and Central Indiana Alumni Chapter, and past member of the Ovid Butler Society Executive Committee, Career Services Advisory Board, and Alumni Engagement Subcommittee for the Board of Trustees.

In addition, he has won the Joseph Irwin Sweeney Alumni Service Award and the Barbara Busche OBS Award, and was the Rotary Foundation’s Paul Harris Fellow.

Jenn graduated from Purdue University in 2005 with a Bachelor of Arts in Education. She was an Avon Community School Corporation elementary-school teacher and is now a stay-at-home mom with sons Luke and Logan. She works as a Beachbody coach and is active with the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

The Foundation Award, created in 2011, honors one person or couple (age 40 and younger) each year who personifies the Butler spirit by demonstrating leadership and generosity to Butler University.

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

CommunityPeople

Butler Presents Eight Alumni Awards

Honorees to receive their recognition during Homecoming Weekend.

Butler University will hold the annual Alumni Awards Recognition Program for extraordinary professional achievement and service to the University and their communities on Friday, October 20, at 6:00 PM in the Howard L. Schrott Center for the Arts.

Sep 27 2017 Read more
Hurricane Irma Destruction
CampusCommunity

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
CampusCommunity

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
Community

The Speak Easy, A Butler Partner, To Add Second Location

BY

PUBLISHED ON Sep 11 2017

The Speak Easy, a member based non-profit organization that brings established businesses and entrepreneurs together in the spirit of growth and acceleration, will open a second, downtown location this summer with founding partners Butler University, Bruce A. Bodner Company, Inc., and Nextech.

The Speak Easy Downtown will be located within the Mile Square in the historical Morrison Opera House building at 47 S. Meridian St. Its doors are scheduled to open July 2016.

Founded in 2011, The Speak Easy has graduated over 170 new companies from its Broad Ripple location. The approximately 300 active members of The Speak Easy range in size from small to medium sized locally owned businesses, to high-growth startups and established enterprise companies.

“When you look at research surrounding innovation hubs throughout the country, you find the most successful ones involve partnerships across multiple organizations with differing backgrounds,” said The Speak Easy Executive Director Danielle McDowell. “We want to accelerate the growth of these companies by convening the right players in our community – like Butler, Bodner, and Nextech – to set The Speak Easy apart as an institution for collaboration, not just business incubation.”

Like its Broad Ripple location, the Speak Easy Downtown will provide an inspirational and collaborative environment for entrepreneurs; however, it’s strategic focus will extend beyond early-stage companies and offer resources and programs to fuel the success of companies in the growing and scaling stages. In addition, with founding partners Nextech and Butler, the focus will expand beyond the current community of entrepreneurs to also include Indy’s next generation of innovators and business leaders.

“Thanks to our partners, the Speak Easy Downtown will be a hub of mentorship and critical business resources such as education, funding, and talent,” added Andy Clark, Board Chairman and co-founder of The Speak Easy. “This project is about serving our community of entrepreneurs by giving them the space and the resources to grow.”

The new location will offer co-working concepts, reservable desks, and small-office micro leasing. In collaboration with founding partners, the space will include programming, education opportunities, and exposure to collaboration resources needed to accelerate business.

“Butler University is passionate about innovation and community,” said Butler President James M. Danko. “This new partnership with the Speak Easy Downtown will allow us to further our support of Central Indiana businesses and entrepreneurs, while also providing exceptional opportunities for our students, faculty, and alumni to connect and collaborate.”

The Speak Easy was founded in 2011 with a mission to cultivate the healthiest entrepreneurial ecosystem, anywhere. Since openings its doors to the Indianapolis community five years ago, it has brought together active and engaged entrepreneurs at every stage of business.

For more information on the Speak Easy, visit https://www.speakeasyindy.com/.

Community

The Speak Easy, A Butler Partner, To Add Second Location

The Speak Easy, a member based non-profit organization that brings established businesses and entrepreneurs together in the spirit of growth and acceleration, will open a second, downtown location this summer with founding partners Butler University, Bruce A. Bodner Company, Inc., and Nextech.

Sep 11 2017 Read more
AcademicsCommunity

Yoga Gives Lab School Students Time to Breathe

BY

PUBLISHED ON Mar 13 2017

 

 

It’s after lunch in 1990 Butler graduate Lisa Gundaker’s kindergarten/first-grade class at the IPS/Butler University Laboratory School, and that means it’s time for downward-facing dog, star pose, and tree position.

She turns off the lights and puts on a recording of forest sounds—crickets chirping, birds calling.

“Take a deep breath in,” she instructs. “Lower your arms and let your breath out.”

Most of her 20 or so students, who have scattered around the room, stretch and balance themselves silently as their teacher leads them through various yoga moves. Some curl up with little stuffed animals they call “breathing buddies” and rest quietly.

“Think about your day,” she says as she walks around the room spraying a lavender/peppermint mist. “Think about one positive thing that’s happened today.”

For these 10 minutes, a quiet calm takes over the room.

 

The yoga exercises Gundaker leads in her classroom are replicated daily throughout the Lab School—and have been since the elementary school reopened five years ago as a partnership between the Indianapolis Public Schools and Butler. The idea is to relieve stress, to give the students a chance to move purposefully, and teach them how to calm down and focus.

“It gives them a time to be by themselves,” Gundaker says later. “We’re together, we’re together, we’re together. We’d just come back from recess and lunch. My thinking about adding yoga to quiet times is that children learn to slow down and reflect. They get to know themselves better and they can take it home too.”

Yoga at the Lab School started when Heather Williams, then the administrative assistant, saw that some classrooms were struggling to stay focused. She started in one classroom and soon was in all of them. As the Lab School grew—it started with kindergarten and first grade and has added a grade every year—so did Williams’ responsibilities.

Today, her title is Yoga Instructor/Researcher, and she’s paid, in part, from a three-year, $150,000 grant from PNC Bank, a major supporter of the Lab School.

"PNC's signature philanthropic cause is early childhood education, which is supported through its Grow Up Great program," PNC Senior Vice President Jeff Kucer said. "The Lab School was a perfect fit for us."

Williams said the yoga program’s positive effects can be seen in students across the school. For some, like Ella, a student in Gundaker’s class, yoga is fun.

“I like yoga,” she says, “because it kind of makes you relax sometimes and it makes you focus. And it feels good.”

For others, yoga is vital. Williams tells the story of a Lab School student who has lost both parents to murder. He’s a quiet, soft-spoken kid, but when he gets worked up, no one can seem to quite get him back down, she said. They’ve done yoga together, and the boy’s grandmother has told Williams that he will go home and do the exercises on his own.

“There is a ton of scientific research backing up yoga, breathing, and mindfulness—how it not only helps academically but also with life skills,” she said. “Now there are a lot more people taking it seriously and doing the research on it to back that up. If you’re going to teach someone academics but you don’t teach them how to deal with emotions or teach them life skills, then you’re not teaching the whole child. If they don’t know how to deal with their inner struggles, it’s going to affect them one way or another.”

 

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

AcademicsCommunity

Yoga Gives Lab School Students Time to Breathe

It’s after lunch in 1990 Butler graduate Lisa Gundaker’s kindergarten/first-grade class at the IPS/Butler University Laboratory School, and that means it’s time for downward-facing dog, star pose, and tree position.

Mar 13 2017 Read more

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