Ivy Tech continues to do what’s best for community

Ivy Tech Community College is in the midst of an organizational structure project that is putting more community in community college, and it will prove to have a great payoff for our Johnson County residents.

At the core of the mission of the community college is ensuring its programs are aligned with the needs of the local workforce, and this is truer than ever before at our Franklin campus.

Ivy Tech Franklin is committed to continuing to serve the Johnson County community, and I am excited to share some of our new initiatives.

In order to meet the increasing demand for registered nurses in the community, we are thrilled to announce that Ivy Tech Franklin will begin offering the Associate of Science in Nursing degree in January. Construction of a nursing skills lab in the existing building is set to begin this month and be complete at the end of this year.

This is possible due to a generous estate gift from Bill and Sandy DeMichieli, which included ownership of the building in which Ivy Tech resides, plus renovation and scholarship funds for a nursing program.

Ivy Tech began meeting with hospitals and health care providers months ago to discuss their challenges in finding qualified nurses. Health care providers expressed their unanimous support in bringing the associate’s degree program to Franklin.

Many have also pledged their support in hosting clinical hours for these students and providing donated equipment for the labs.

This will allow more students in Johnson County and the surrounding areas to have local options to continue their education. Currently, there are 90 Johnson County students commuting to the Ivy Tech Lawrence location for the nursing associate’s degree program.

By having more options locally, the students will save time and travel costs associated with completing their degree.

To learn more about workforce demands in another important sector, Ivy Tech Franklin recently hosted an employer round-table discussion with local manufacturers. The participants shared their company’s challenges in finding skilled workers to fill vacant positions. The goal of the meeting was to identify some common skills and training needs that were consistent with many employers.

Ivy Tech plans to analyze this input and outline some potential courses or training that could help provide some of the skilled workers that employers are desperate to find. The solution could be short-term certifications, apprenticeship programs, degree programs or training.

Ivy Tech is a support network for the local economy and economic development. For this reason, Ivy Tech will continue to facilitate these types of dialogues with the local employers and partners to find the right programs, courses and trainings to offer at Ivy Tech Franklin.

Our remaining building space and the 27 acres of adjacent land offers opportunity for expansion, growth, and innovation for future Ivy Tech students and local employers.

In the short term, students are busy registering for the fall semester. As of this date, Ivy Tech Franklin’s enrollment for fall 2017 is trending upward in comparison over fall 2016. Classes begin Aug. 22, and students are encouraged to enroll early to ensure they get the classes they need at the times they prefer.

Ivy Tech Franklin offers students a comfortable learning environment, smaller classes and individualized customer service. It’s an ideal place for a student to begin their educational and career journey.

Ivy Tech is excited to roll out these new initiatives and to continue to serve our local businesses and community members. We will always strive to do what is best for the Franklin community and will continue to do our best to put the “community” in Ivy Tech Community College.