Ball State’s current university-wide initiatives include the following:
Intense, collaborative, hands-on immersive learning experiences in every academic college extend education beyond the classroom. Immersive seminars and projects bring groups of students, faculty mentors, and community partners together to develop a tangible outcome or product—such as a film, business plan, product design, or exhibit. These student-driven experiences sharpen teamwork and communication skills, connect students with industry professionals, and provide a portfolio of work that will give graduates an advantage in the job market.
The Emerging Media Initiative (EMI) is a more than $20 million investment to provide critically needed human capital and foster economic development across the state and region in evolving technology and digital content to enhance work, play, and learning; broaden access to information; and enrich personal connection by eliminating the constraints of time and location. The initiative, funded through combined institutional and new private resources, focuses the university’s historic strengths in this area and has four components: leadership and sustainability, faculty and research, student opportunities, and engagement and economic development.
Launched with funding from the Indiana legislature, Building Better Communities connects businesses, organizations, and communities across Indiana with Ball State expertise and resources, providing real-world solutions to real-world problems. Through customized efforts, its work results in stronger businesses, improved communities, and more efficient state and local agencies.
With funding from two $1.5 million grants from the Lilly Endowment Inc., Building Better Communities Fellows (formerly Business Fellows) links interdisciplinary student teams and faculty mentors with Indiana businesses and organizations on projects that help community partners improve services, increase business, develop new job opportunities, enhance quality, or boost competitiveness. In the process, students turn academic knowledge into real-world solutions through intense, semester- or yearlong, for-credit experiences. They develop professional experience and connections that increase the likelihood of them pursuing employment in Indiana after graduation.
A university-wide task force was appointed in 2005 to develop a new Strategic Plan to guide Ball State into the next decade. The resulting report outlines a bold plan to advance the university to a new level of distinctiveness. The vision calls for improving the quality of the student body, providing meaningful immersive learning experiences for undergraduates, continuing to build and sustain high-quality academic programs, and fostering a university community that is both vibrant and supportive.
Forgoing a traditional inauguration ceremony, President Jo Ann M. Gora used the $150,000 saved, plus additional funds provided by donors, to present scholarships to 25 Indiana high school students of high ability. Learn more about the Inauguration Scholars and their donors.
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