On June 19th, approximately 75 Angel Investors, CICF staff and special guests attended a luncheon held at IVY Tech’s Courses, a student operated restaurant and bakery in what was once the Stouffer Hotel (also known as the hotel used by Elvis Presley while in town for what became the last performance of his life in 1977). The event focused on College Readiness and Success, one of CICF’s three community transformation initiatives.
CICF Board Chair, Mark Hill shared the importance of supporting educational attainment, noting that it was a philanthropic passion for he and his wife, Karen, as well as their involvement with Teach for America, the Mindtrust and other related programs and initiatives.
IVY Tech Chancellor Kathy Lee spoke about the school’s Accelerating Greatness 2025 Plan, which aligns with national educational goals to achieve 60 percent postsecondary attainment among working-age adults (25-64) by 2025. Lee discussed the school’s changing and expanding curriculum and demographics, as well as its Associated Accelerated Program (ASAP), which gives students the chance to earn an Associate’s degree in one year versus a traditional two-year track. Lee also introduced former CICF and Legacy Fund Board Chair Mike Smith, who played an instrumental role in developing the ASAP program.
Now retired, Smith served as CEO of Mayflower Group, Executive VP and CFO of WellPoint, Inc., as well as a number of volunteer leadership positions and boards. Smith recalled how the program was conceived at the 2008 Indiana Commission for Higher Education, and explained how it works, noting that ASAP scholars receive a stipend that allows them to focus solely on their education instead of how to make a living while they earn a degree.
Smith then introduced Esther Conde, a Ben Davis High School graduate, and recent ASAP scholar. Conde is attending Ashford University in Clinton, Iowa, and noted that she was soon graduating with a four-year degree, debt-free, crediting the transferable education she received via ASAP, as well as the time management skills she gained as part of ASAP’s accelerated pace. “This was the best decision I ever made,” she said, noting that the program gave her a huge advantage in terms of the types of careers she could pursue, and the ability to start her career on even financial footing.
Brian Payne, President and CEO, CICF, connected IVY Tech’s programs with CICF’s community leadership initiatives. He also pointed out that the placemats for the lunch featured a map that visually demonstrated CICF’s community leadership initiatives at work throughout Marion and Hamilton counties before adjourning the meeting.
Watch for an invitation to the Fall 2013 Angel Investor event soon. In the meantime, we hope you’ll find the rest of the content in this initial Angel Investor e-newsletter meaningful, and reflective of your valuable contributions to central Indiana, and the Central Indiana Community Foundation.