State of the Campus focuses on IUPUI's 50th anniversary

IUPUI Chancellor Nasser H. Paydar delivered his fourth State of the Campus address Nov. 6 in Hine Hall Auditorium.

IUPUI Chancellor Nasser H. PaydarView print quality image
IUPUI Chancellor Nasser H. Paydar. Photo by Liz Kaye, Indiana University

His special 50th Anniversary address took the crowd of more than 200 faculty, staff and students back to some of the cornerstone moments that formed the foundation upon which IUPUI was built, including the establishment of the School of Medicine in 1903, the School of Social Work in 1911 and the School of Nursing in 1914.

Paydar shared timelines, graphs and maps depicting key moments leading up to the campus's milestone 50th Anniversary celebration. Research grants and awards at IUPUI total more than $7.7 billion since the campus was established in 1969. The number of full-time faculty has grown from 690 to 3,181, and IUPUI counts more than 203,000 graduates among its Jaguar alumni. Most IUPUI students are Hoosiers and stay in Indiana upon graduation.

Paydar acknowledged special "Red Ribbon Guests," including 50th Anniversary Faces of IUPUI, liaisons and coordinating committee members, Welcoming Campus Initiative project leads, and IUPUI Strategic Plan champions. The 2018 update to the strategic plan was distributed at the event and is reflected in a refreshed IUPUI Strategic Plan website.

One of the visual highlights of the event appeared toward the end of the presentation, when Paydar described changes to Michigan Street: its conversation to a two-way thoroughfare, the new Shreve Gateway that is under construction at Michigan and West streets, and what Paydar termed "skyscaping."

Using "before" and "after" photographs, Paydar showed the transformation that has taken place over the past several months as overhead utility wires and cables have been buried along West Street. A capstone to the two-way conversions of New York and Michigan streets, the "skyscaping" project will allow the new Shreve Gateway to be seen unimpeded by visual clutter.

With all of these changes, especially the new gateways, the intersections of Michigan and West streets and New York and West streets hold great promise as new IUPUI campus landmarks where graduates will congregate and celebrate with family photographs and selfies during commencement season.