Philanthropy at Work
The long, crimson banners have appeared, one by one, at construction sites all over the Indiana University Bloomington campus. Mounted on the security fencing, they read: Philanthropy at Work.
With their play on the familiar “men at work” signs, the banners currently call attention to:
- HODGE HALL, the renovated and expanded undergraduate building of the Kelley School of Business on Tenth Street.
- The new FACULTY STUDIO BUILDING for the Jacobs School of Music at the corner of Third and Jordan.
- BART KAUFMAN FIELD AND ANDY MOHR FIELD, the new baseball/softball complex at Fee Lane and the Bypass.
Why? Because generous IU supporters have helped fund all of them.
It’s a fundamental truth, zip-tied to a fence: Philanthropy shapes the university.
And there are the dozens of other existing buildings, performance halls, laboratories, and art installations that would never have come about without the generosity and foresight of the university’s benefactors over the years. Today, they may appear to have been part of the campus landscape forever. But at one time, they too could have had a banner on the fence: Philanthropy at Work.
Philanthropy has profoundly affected their lives.
While renovation and new construction may be the most conspicuous ways, philanthropy is actually at work every day in the lives of IU students and faculty.
Think of all the undergraduates who are here because someone created a scholarship fund. All the graduate students who are able to pursue their dreams of an advanced degree through the help of a donated fellowship. All the faculty members who are exploring important ideas because someone funded an endowed chair or professorship, or gave the necessary funds to endow a research institute. Your philanthropy at work indeed makes the difference at IU. Here are a few telling examples.
Majors in Informatics and Journalism
2012 Cox Exploratory Scholar—Jesse and Beulah Chanley Cox established a far-reaching scholarship for IU’s working students. Exploratory Scholars receive financial support and work in a campus position related to their academic interest.
Chelsie: “The generosity of the Coxes redefined my IU experience. I have used the financial support to widen my IU experiences and to be a better student. In part, I am inspired by Jesse Cox’s example, his dedication to hard work, and his values. But also, my internship with the Office of Admission’s social media department has been a great learning experience, one I wouldn’t have had without my scholarship award.”
Professor Jonathan Michaelsen
Chair of the IU Department of Theatre and Drama
The Ruth N. Halls Theatre—This 439-seat venue resulted from an estate gift made by its namesake. Her gifts to IU also created a lecture fund, graduate research endowments, professorships, and fellowships in the College of Arts and Sciences.
Professor Michaelsen: “Theatre is defined by space. To have such a well-designed venue makes a huge impact on our students. For everyone from our actors to our theatre designers, this space offers a professional experience, one that I think our students will carry the memory of forever. And in this theatre, we are never far from our audience, who become part of our productions. Our goal is to educate audiences as well as students.”
Professor Kevin Brown
Indiana University Maurer School of Law
Richard S. Melvin Professor of Law—This professorship was endowed by the John W. Anderson Foundation in honor of Melvin, a Maurer alumnus, for his work as an early foundation board member and chairman.
Professor Brown: “The highlight of my intellectual experience to date occurred thanks to my professorship. I traveled to India to conduct a comparative study between its ‘untouchable’ population and underrepresented minorities in the United States. Such comparisons help you discover new issues and new perspectives. During my trip, I was able to sit down with Rahul Gandhi, the grandson of Indira Gandhi, and discuss issues of equality with a man likely to become prime minister of India one day.”
Lauren “Ming” Holden
College of Arts and Sciences
Master of Fine Arts student in creative writing
2012 Wells Graduate Fellowship—Named after the late IU president and chancellor Herman B Wells, the fellowship supports doctoral or MFA students who demonstrate Wells’ qualities of leadership, academic excellence, character, social consciousness, and generosity of spirit.
Lauren: “The Wells Fellowship supports the idea that the important question isn't 'What are you going to do?' but 'Who are you? What are your values? How can you contribute?' When you are selected, they're saying, 'We have confidence in your ability and character. Here you go.' It couldn't be a greater honor, and I'm so grateful.”
Professor Burney Fischer
The Vincent and Elinor Ostrom Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis—In its 40 years, the Ostrom Workshop has produced important research, and its scholars have taught generations of students. It was founded by IU professors, the late Vincent and Elinor Ostrom (Nobel Memorial Laureate in Economic Sciences, 2009).
Professor Fischer: “The Ostrom Workshop is home to a vibrant community. It includes professors, graduate students, and visiting scholars from around the world. Like the workshop’s founders, they are committed to improving the world through research about how we understand and construct our governments, our institutions, and our society. That’s what mattered to Elinor and Vincent. And because they had the foresight to support the workshop through endowments, what mattered to them continues to grow and thrive.”