Transformation starts with you
“I was inspired to see that I could do more than I thought I could do.”
Katherine Welch ’93 didn’t set out to be a doctor when she became a Greyhound and a chemistry major. But her journey to medical school, to bush hospitals in Thailand, and to founding organizations advocating for voiceless, poverty-stricken groups in Asia was inspired by her University of Indianapolis experience. What she recalls most are the professors who fostered her academic growth.
“Dr. Joe Burnell saw in me more than I saw in myself,” she said. “He encouraged me to think about medical school, which I had not considered at all. I was inspired to see that I could do more than I thought I could do.”
Dr. Burnell, a University of Indianapolis graduate with expertise in biochemistry, was awarded for teacher excellence in the sciences at the University, and identifies his students’ success as a strong motivator.
“When you decide to become an educator, your success becomes less about you and more what your students are able to do with the start that you gave them,” said Burnell. In part due to Burnell’s encouragement, Dr. Welch became a medical doctor renowned for her service to disenfranchised communities in Asia. She founded Relentless, an organization that endeavors to intercede in the damaging practice of human trafficking.
Burnell’s ability to see the potential for greatness in Dr. Welch and steer her in that direction serves as an important reminder that faculty members are at the heart of student success. Because of his encouragement, the world now has a doctor whose impact reaches thousands of miles from Indianapolis.
Through committed faculty and supporters like you, the University will continue to send impactful students like Dr. Welch out into the world. Your campaign dollars support strong educators who inspire students to realize their full potential and embark on careers with purpose.
"People have the opportunity through the University of Indianapolis to help perpetuate the values that are important to them. They can help to perpetuate ‘Education for Service.'"
A desire to help students employ good values in ethical decision-making and critical-thinking is what drove Bob Sachs ’75 to make a donation to The Campaign for the University of Indianapolis. A longtime supporter, Sachs’ latest gift establishes the University of Indianapolis Center for Ethics and creates an endowment that will ensure the center’s continued success into the future.
The Center was conceived by Dr. Peter Murphy, Beverley Pitts Distinguished Honors Professor and associate professor of Philosophy, who will oversee its administration. Dr. Murphy worked closely with Sachs to create the values that will perpetuate the Center’s success. Among these values are appreciation for the complexity of ethical decisions, removal of simple biases when making those decisions and support for critical thinking over easy solutions.
A financial administrator with the United Methodist Church, Sachs says that one of the most important factors in his decision to donate funds from a life insurance policy to support the Center is his desire to establish a lasting legacy. His parents also graduated from the University in 1946. Their continued engagement, he says, helped establish Sachs’ connection with the University and instilled in him a tradition of giving.
“I think it’s reasonable to ask others ‘what is going to be your legacy?’ I think people have the opportunity through the University of Indianapolis to help perpetuate the values that are important to them. They can help to perpetuate ‘Education for Service’ for students in the future.”
"UIndy is the place where we started our lives together and it’s a place that provided the foundation we built both of our careers upon."
For Laura ’05 and Elijah ’04 Hammans, the decision to consistently donate to the University of Indianapolis was easy. It’s where they met. It’s the setting for the beginning of their story as a couple. Now, it’s where their story continues to unfold.
“Looking back, UIndy is the place where we started our lives together and it’s a place that provided the foundation we built both of our careers upon,” said Elijah.The Hammans, in their 30s, are part of a group of alumni and friends who donate consistently each year and comprise a large portion of the University’s donor base.
Elijah works as a lawyer in downtown Indianapolis and is also a member of the University alumni board, where he hopes to help close the donation gap from alumni in their 30s. Laura is a Project Coordinator for the Woodrow Wilson MBA in Education Leadership program at the University. She supports the leadership initiatives of successful teachers in schools around Indianapolis. Elijah says part of his goal is to instill the foundations for giving in younger generations, including their children.
“Come back and visit the campus,” said Elijah. “I think you can see by walking around how much it has grown since we were here. You can see the impact of your giving. We don’t give lots and lots, but when you combine our giving with everyone else’s giving, you can see the results physically around you.”
Individual annual gifts, when designated to the UIndy Fund, provide flexible resources to support institution priorities that enable a well-rounded, high-quality and meaningful education that leads to success for graduates.
"The people who donate to UIndy don’t do it because they want to be recognized. They do it out of the goodness of their hearts."
Senior Aspen Lovejoy’s tenure at the University of Indianapolis is marked by a sense of community. She feels it in the classroom, from University employees who greet her with smiles and openness, and when working closely with professors who give her personal attention. She has transformed this feeling into a compassionate teaching style, something she describes as paramount to her future success as a teacher.
“One of the most important things I’ve learned is to make my students feel like they matter,” she said. “That the sky is literally the limit. If you show them you care, they can learn anything. This is what UIndy professors show students daily.”
Lovejoy, originally from Hawaii, explains that it is her personal relationships with faculty that have helped her achieve great heights. Working together with Mary Gobbett, Biology instructor, she established a science-learning program with preschool and kindergarten students. Meanwhile, Kate Reinhardt, Teacher Education instructor, helped Lovejoy become a two-time Student Indiana State Delegate Representative at the National Education Association Representative Assembly.
Lovejoy makes clear her success must also be attributed to generous donors who led to her receipt of four endowed scholarships covering 90 percent of her tuition. “These scholarships not only afforded me the experience to attend the university of my choice, but also the full experience of college life, life in the classroom as well as in my community, without having the worries of how I would pay for it all. I could simply focus on being the best student I wanted to be,” said Lovejoy.
Last spring Lovejoy met with two donors who helped fund her college education. Alumnus and 37-year Professor of Business Dr. Stephen Maple ’66 and his wife, Sarah, support the Lloyd E. & Treva I. Hiatt Elementary Education Endowed Scholarship.
“The people who donate to UIndy don’t do it because they want to be recognized,” she said. “They do it out of the goodness of their hearts. I think it’s great that the University established this sense of family. We take care of our own.”