Intern Nathan: Ivy Tech from an outsider’s perspective

nathan-rileyHello, my name is Nathan Riley, and I am the summer intern in Marketing and Communications at Ivy Tech Fort Wayne. I am a senior at Indiana Tech, and during my first week working for Ivy Tech, I have learned a lot about the College and its students.

The atmosphere here is similar to Indiana Tech’s, but the college seems to be more outgoing toward communicating with current and future students. At Indiana Tech, there’s a focus on athletics to recruit new students, but here the College talks to all kinds of prospective students via phone calls and in-person meetings.

At Ivy Tech, the College has a pretty cool thing other colleges should learn from to help move students along to the next step. On the website there’s a pop-up box if you stay on the page for too long without taking action, and it asks you if you need help and opens a live chat window with someone to talk to at the College. I know I would have been using that feature every time I needed something as an incoming college student. I had no idea what I was doing! It seems like such a useful tool.

Another thing I like about Ivy Tech so far is the fact that this college has so many different majors. I never knew there were so many degrees offered when I was looking to go to college. I quickly discovered there are more than 100 different degrees and certifications offered at Ivy Tech. That is not to take anything away from the many different degrees offered elsewhere, but there are degrees here I never knew were available here at Ivy Tech. I also was surprised by the great facilities for automotive technology on the Fort Wayne Campus. Had I known that when I started my search for colleges, I may have considered Ivy Tech a little closer. I made assumptions about the College based on the small Ivy Tech campus in my hometown of Madison.

There are benefits to either path — a traditional four-year one or starting at a community college. Ivy Tech definitely moves at a faster pace in terms of giving out as much information as possible to its students. Ivy Tech is different, and I see that as a good thing. Not all students are looking for the same higher education experience. Ivy Tech allows students to enter the workforce earlier or transfer to finish a bachelor’s degree.

Fort Wayne Campus dedicates new greenhouse

Ivy Tech Community College Fort Wayne today dedicated its new greenhouse, which gives students in the Agriculture program a hands-on way to learn various growing techniques, such as aquaculture.

“The aquaculture unit will add another aspect to our greenhouse: fertilizer for the plants,” says Kelli Kreider, Agriculture program chair. “Water will circulate from fish to the plants and back to the fish. With that, students will learn about fish husbandry, processing, water control.”

Ivy Tech Community College’s Fort Wayne Campus dedicated its greenhouse Wednesday. The space gives Agriculture students a hands-on learning lab for classes and study.

The greenhouse was built with the help of numerous community organizations, including the Clarence and Edith Schust Foundation, Chuck and Lisa Surack/Sweetwater, English Bonter Mitchell Foundation, AWS Foundation, Michael Ottenweller family, and Anthony Lardydell; partners Design Collaborative and Hagerman Construction; and Old National Bank, a donor for the greenhouse and related scholarships.

“We are also excited to work with Easterseals Arc, whose clients will be able to take courses at Ivy Tech this summer thanks to Old National,” says Margaret Sturm, Ivy Tech’s executive director of Resource Development.

Easterseals Arc students are currently completing the courses, which include three culinary classes and three agriculture classes.

The greenhouse opened in January of this year, and depending on the classes students select, they may study there on a weekly basis for class.

This year saw the largest number of Agriculture graduates at Ivy Tech Fort Wayne since the program’s 2013 inception. Twenty students graduated in Spring 2018, and so far, 80 students are enrolled for Fall 2018 classes. Those studying Agriculture at Ivy Tech can earn a variety of certificates, in addition to an associate degree, which can lead to employment or transfer to a bachelor’s or even master’s degree. Visit IvyTech.edu/agriculture to learn more about the program.

‘He perseveres’: Ivy Tech Fort Wayne graduates first Achieve Your Degree student

Jonathon Mossburg wears glasses. He wears cargo shorts, sandals, and a T-shirt. His hair’s a little messy. To any eye, he appears to be exactly what he is: A new college graduate a few days after spring commencement: no more classes, no more books.

But Mossburg is one of those “more than meets the eye” fellows: He has cerebral palsy, a movement disorder that affects muscle tone, most often caused by something that happens in utero to a developing brain. When he was born, he says, he had no oxygen. Doctors told his parents, “Your son may never walk or talk.”

He walks and talks, with only a slight stutter.

He received psychological testing, and doctors told his parents, “College isn’t a good route for your son.”

On May 11, 2018, Mossburg got his associate degree from Ivy Tech Community College’s Fort Wayne Campus in Healthcare Specialist.

Mossburg

“My dad thought I could do it,” Mossburg says. “He was one of those people that education was (important). He got his master’s degree. He was a smart guy.”

Mossburg agreed with his dad, and he has spent seven years proving him right.

“I always thought I could do it,” he says. “I kind of wanted to do it in his honor too, even though it was for me.”

In 2008, Mossburg’s father was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer. He died in 2013.

“He helped me with high school homework and some of my college homework,” Mossburg says. “He was one of the few who said, ‘You can do anything.’”

Achieve Your Degree

Mossburg delivers patient trays at Parkview Regional Medical Center. Last summer at work, he heard about a program at Ivy Tech called Achieve Your Degree, a partnership between Ivy Tech and community businesses where the employer covers its employees’ tuition costs. So long as Mossburg kept his grades at a C or higher, Parkview covered his tuition.

Mossburg is the college’s first graduate from the program, which started at Ivy Tech Fort Wayne last summer. Currently, students from 14 different companies are enrolled at Ivy Tech as part of Achieve Your Degree, including 80/20 Inc., Warner Electric, Lutheran Life Villages, and Lake City Bank.

“It makes it easier for people who work full-time to come to school without having to worry about the financial barriers they would normally be worrying about,” says Jennifer Krupa, who coordinates the Achieve Your Degree program.

Plus, it helps with brain drain, when talent leaves a geographic area, because participating companies require that students stay employed with the company.

“What it does is open students up to different opportunities with their same employer that they would not have if they did not possess a degree,” Krupa says.

Mossburg, for example, is looking to transfer to a different department now. He’s eyeballing positions in doctors’ offices, instead of the main hospital where he works, on the administrative or clerical side of things.

Mossburg, center, with his stepdad, John Glass, and mother, Diane Glass.

‘He perseveres’

Since graduation, Mossburg has been in pretty regular touch with Ivy Tech’s Career Development office. He’s assuring his resume is in top shape, and he’s looking for advice on moving up, says Joyce Baker, Career Development assistant director.

Baker has known Mossburg for nearly two years.

“When I first met him, he was shy,” she says. “I’ve definitely seen him blossom and become more confident.”

Baker is the one, in fact, who helped Mossburg decide to study Healthcare Specialist. She provided a career assessment test, which showed that Mossburg would excel in medical billing and coding. He wanted to work in healthcare, but his skillset was in the behind-the-scenes end of things instead of direct patient care, which is often all people consider when they think of working in healthcare, Baker says.

In addition to Career Development, Mossburg made use of other Ivy Tech resources like the Center for Academic Excellence tutoring center. His tutor, he says, is encouraging him to return to Ivy Tech for another degree, in Health Information Technology. She tutored him for his advanced coding class and saw how well he did, Mossburg says.

He also worked with Disability Services, which provided, among other things, accommodations for Mossburg to receive extra testing time.

“You just have to look at each individual, at where their strengths and weaknesses lie” to determine the necessary accommodations, says Todd Nichols, director of Disability Services.

Nichols has worked with Mossburg since April 2011.

“He has a lot of grit, and he perseveres,” Nichols says. “It’s not just enough to say he works hard: He looks at how he’s working and makes adjustments as he needs to. He really knows how to hang in there.”

‘How you live’

Mossburg has a photo of and quote by Stuart Scott on his Facebook header. Scott was an ESPN sportscaster who died in 2015 from cancer. This is the quote:

“You beat cancer by how you live, why you live, and in the manner in which you live.”

For Mossburg, that manner might be best described by Aesop’s “The Tortoise and the Hare” fable, Baker says.

“He’s like the turtle,” Baker says. “He keeps going forward. He doesn’t give up.”

Ivy Stories: Healthcare is adding more jobs than any other in the country

Ivy Stories is a short, occasional feature on Green Light that spotlights current students and/or recent graduates.

There is a common misconception that those who want to work in healthcare must have direct patient interaction. However, those careers are much further reaching than nurses and doctors, which is good news for anyone looking for a job: The country is adding 2.4 million new jobs in healthcare, more than any other occupational group in the country.

It’s one of the reasons Melissa Green chose to study Health Information Technology at Ivy Tech’s Fort Wayne Campus.

Green

When she started at Ivy Tech, she wasn’t positive what she wanted to study. She took an assessment test in the Career Development office, which suggested that she become a proofreader with a publisher or a medical records specialist.

“I chose the most promising one, as careers in healthcare are always available,” Green says. “This degree is an open-ended opportunity with an endless assortment of career choices. It’s such an exciting time.”

When Green graduated from our program in May, she was already working at Parkview Health when she accepted her diploma.

“My status as a future graduate helped me get that position,” she says.

Fort Wayne Campus to host culinary camp for middle schoolers

WHAT:
Ivy Tech Community College Fort Wayne will host an IvyLiving Culinary Camp next week. The free camp serves low-income students who attend area youth centers including the Jennings Center, Weisser Park Youth Center, and the Cooper Center.

Campers will learn about nutrition, sanitation, cleaning, culinary careers, and food chemistry. They will also learn to bake cupcakes, set a table, and prepare meals. Campers will visit a local pickle farm, watch ice carving, and more.

IvyLiving programs are non-credit classes promoting personal growth and lifelong learning through engaging and intriguing short-term experiences. Local and regional experts share their knowledge and passions with participants in a small group setting.

WHERE:
Ivy Tech Fort Wayne*
Coliseum Campus kitchens
3800 N. Anthony Blvd.
Fort Wayne, IN 46835

SCHEDULE:
9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. June 11 to 15

* Campers will attend off-campus field trips June 13, to Sechler’s Pickle’s, in St. Joe, and Sweetwater.

A case for making art

Recently, I created a drawing using black and white charcoals on a charcoal paper. It was my very first charcoal art, and it’s safe to say that it is my favorite art piece I have ever created. I named the piece “The Ballerina,” and the inspiration came from Pinterest: I was looking thorough pictures and came across a black and white photo of a ballerina. Her body figure and movements inspired me to draw the piece.

One thing I learned about doing charcoal art is that the charcoal created a lot of dust. I had to be careful while I was drawing because that dust could smudge everywhere on the paper and create fingerprints. The charcoal itself has the scent of wood. If I looked at the finished piece, the texture might seem smooth, but if I run my hand over the piece, the texture is kind of rough, a little like sandpaper.

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The type of art I personally love to do is drawing and painting, but I also like crocheting and cooking. Nothing is more satisfying than seeing an art piece form from blank canvas to something magical. I find it really fascinating to see how I can create an art piece with just two colors.

This particular type of drawing brings me a lot of joy and relaxation; it calms me to shade and blend the black and white charcoals. I am easily stressed, especially with homework and assignments, and creating art, such as painting and drawing, takes that stress and anxiety away. It also helps if I am listening to music while I create. Depending on my mood, I might listen to R&B ballads and classical music or hit songs and pop music.

One other reason I do art is that it allows me to express my creativity. Being creative allows me to try different things and take risks. I express myself through taking risks, and trying different things helps me learn about myself: what I like, what I excel at.

I love that art is a universal language that lets us communicate without words. Everyone can take something different away from an art piece, and it does not require to know certain language to do so.

Some believe that real artists are the one who create sculptures or the one who paint on canvas. Others think that to be an artist, one must born with talent. Many are also concerned about how bad their artwork is. The truth is, everyone can be an artist. Art is freedom of expression, and we can express our creativity and imagination. It does not matter whether the artwork you do is good or bad, as long as you feel relaxed and relieve some stress while creating art—that’s all that matters. The art work you create does not have to be perfect, but it has to be you.

Assumpta is the work study for the Marketing and Communications office. Check out her previous Green Light post, about being multilingual, here.

Fort Wayne Campus, Warsaw Site announce spring 2018 Dean’s List

Ivy Tech Community College is pleased to announce the Spring 2018 Dean’s List for the Fort Wayne Campus and the Warsaw Site. The Dean’s List, prepared and published each term, gives recognition to students who:

  • Are degree-seeking.
  • Achieve a minimum 3.50 grade point average in non-academic skills advancement courses with no Ds or Fs.
  • Earn six or more Ivy Tech credits during the semester.
  • Have earned at least 12 non-academic skills advancement credits during their course of study.

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Ivy Tech Fort Wayne, 80/20 Inc. sign Achieve Your Degree program agreement

AchieveYourDegree_HZ

80-20-logoIvy Tech Community College Fort Wayne and 80/20 Inc. recently signed an agreement to offer all employees of 80/20 Inc. in Columbia City the opportunity to earn college credit through the College’s Achieve Your Degree program.

Achieve Your Degree (AYD) is a statewide collaboration between Ivy Tech campuses and its community businesses and organizations that offers free or low-cost tuition to employees and members through tuition reimbursement or financial support from business and industry.

8020-ivytech-AYD

(front) Trent Kumfer, training coordinator, and Patrick Buesching, CEO, of 80/20 Inc.
(back) Lisa Smith, director of community engagement, and Jerrilee K. Mosier, chancellor of Ivy Tech Community College Fort Wayne

“We have had a long-standing relationship with 80/20 Inc. Many of our current students and alumni are already employed by the company,” says Chancellor Jerrilee K. Mosier, Ed.D. “The new agreement with the Ivy Tech Achieve Your Degree program will provide additional opportunity for all employees to continue their education to reach their career goal.”

With Achieve Your Degree, Ivy Tech Fort Wayne representatives will work directly with 80/20 Inc. to provide employer-deferred tuition billing as long as individuals meet the guidelines of the company’s tuition assistance program. 80/20 employees participating in AYD will have access to all Ivy Tech courses, with the opportunity to earn a credential with reimbursement conditions developed and implemented by 80/20 Inc. Employees have the opportunity to take advantage of higher education at Ivy Tech with little or no upfront cost to the student. It also assists the company in skilling up their workforce.

“The partnership with Ivy Tech for the Achieve Your Degree program is another great way 80/20 rewards and demonstrates the significance our employees hold,” says Patrick Buesching, chief executive officer of 80/20 Inc.. “It also supports one of our corporate core values of employee development as a key competitive advantage in the marketplace and in the community. We have a ‘pack-your-own-chute’ mentality, and this program promotes that initiative. These types of partnerships also speak to the advantages and benefits that accrue with continued dialogue and collaboration between Ivy Tech and the region’s employers.”

The program is available to 80/20 Inc. employees beginning this fall.

Benefits of Achieve Your Degree include:

  • Financial barriers are removed with employer deferred tuition
  • One point of contact for both the employer and the student/employee
  • Enrollment concierge services in Ivy Tech’s AYD office or on employer site
  • Monitoring the student/employee’s academic success and providing supports as needed
  • Flexible scheduling that will work around the student/employee’s work schedule

Upcoming semester start dates include:

  • Fall 16-week courses begin Aug. 20, 2018
  • Fall 12-week courses begin Sept. 17, 2018
  • Fall 8-week courses begin Oct. 15, 2018
  • Spring 16-week courses begin Jan. 14, 2018

Visit IvyTech.edu/fortwayne-programs for Ivy Tech’s academic programs in the Fort Wayne area.

Visit IvyTech.edu/achieveyourdegree for more information about Achieve Your Degree.

 

About 80/20 Inc.

80/20 Inc. is the originator and the manufacturer of “The Industrial Erector Set”, a modular aluminum framing system for every industry or application since 1989. From light to heavy-duty, 80/20 modular framing is a perfect solution for machine frames, guarding, enclosures, displays, workstations and the DIY home hobbyist. A catalog of over 6,000 products to choose from, design assistance and value-add support, 80/20 Inc. will ensure your project is completed to the highest standards. Visit www.8020.net for details.

Ivy Stories: Medical Assisting & Business Administration

Ivy Stories is a short, occasional feature on Green Light that spotlights current students and/or recent graduates.

Tisha Knott knew she wanted to study Medical Assisting since she lost her mother to lung cancer–because of the excellent care she received.

“I saw how much everyone involved with her care and treatment made a difference in how she handled the disease,” says Knott, a Medical Assisting student at Ivy Tech. “The knowledge they had was great, yes, but some of the kindest and caring people made my mom’s bad days better. I want to do that for people and give that back.”

From early in her education, Knott saw that the field was a good fit for her: She remembers watching a demonstration in Anatomy and Physiology–a sheep eyeball dissection–when a fellow classmate passed out. Knott remembers that she was the only person in class to react and catch his fall. He assured the classmate was OK and went to get help.

“He was fine, but when I reflect on that moment and how I reacted without any proper training–it was my instinct to help him–I knew that healthcare and direct patient care were for me,” she says.

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Just 4 percent of Millennials are self-employed at age 30; by comparison, 5.3 percent of Gen X’ers and 6.8 percent of Baby Boomers were self-employed at the same age. Despite the contradictory data, though, more than half of Millennials think their generation is more entrepreneurial than previous generations, perhaps because 62 percent have thought about starting a business.

Kendall Riecken is one of those who’s making his way: He won Ivy Tech’s New Venture Competition last year with KR Designs, his automotive company.

“My education prepared me to understand how the real world of business actually works,” says Riecken, a, Ivy Tech business administration graduate. “There were so many theories taught in school, and now I actually get to put them to use and understand what it takes to be successful in business.”

Warsaw Site to host Women in Philanthropy event

DETAILS:
The Ivy Tech Foundation is hosting Windows of Opportunity, a Circle of Ivy celebration. Guests will enjoy hors d’oeuvres and cocktails on the patio while learning about the exceptional students at Ivy Tech Community College’s Warsaw Site.

Those interested in attending can RSVP to Margaret Sturm, the executive director of Resource Development, at msturm7@ivytech.edu. RSVPs are due by June 20.

Circle of Ivy was established by the Ivy Tech Foundation, and it is a group to create resources and raise funds to diminish barriers to higher education for Ivy Tech students. Circle of Ivy cultivates and celebrates women as philanthropists. Since its inception in 2015, the statewide initiative has supported students in four major areas: school and institutional supplies, completion funds, emergency funds, and educational travel funds. It has more than 300 members and has raised more than $90,000 to help students learn, graduation, and give back to their communities.

WHEN:
6 to 7:30 p.m. June 27

WHERE:
Ivy Tech Community College’s Warsaw Site
2545 Silveus Crossing
Warsaw, IN 46582