Indiana University, Purdue name leaders for talks over future governance of Fort Wayne campus

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FORT WAYNE, Indiana — Indiana and Purdue universities each have named vice presidents at their respective institutions to lead talks between the schools on the future management of Indiana-Purdue-Fort Wayne.

This week's announcement comes a month after a study commissioned by the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership recommended a shift in governance of the Fort Wayne campus from Purdue to IU because the latter has eight regional campuses and the institutional infrastructure to administer them.

Julie Griffith, Purdue's vice president for public affairs, will lead the talks for her school and IU will be represented by Mike Sample, vice president for public affairs and government relations, The Journal Gazette and The (Bloomington) Herald-Times reported.

The announcement establishes that both universities are willing to talk, but there is no timetable, IU spokesman Mark Land said. The meetings are intended to gather information to study the feasibility of a change in governance, the two schools said in a news release.

"IU and Purdue have agreed to begin discussions on the issues related to what a change in management of the (IPFW) campus would look like, but no direction has been decided," Land said. "It's really more of a fact-finding endeavor to explore the feasibility of such a move."

An initial meeting has not been scheduled. Griffith said Sample was out of the country until the end of the month.

The Fort Wayne campus, which has about 13,500 undergraduate and graduate students, has been managed by Purdue since 1965 and offers courses and degree programs for both schools. The two universities also share a regional campus in Indianapolis that is managed by IU.

After the release of the report, Purdue issued a statement saying it favored whatever arrangement was best for IPFW students and northeastern Indiana.

"If the local community, the people of IPFW and the state's public leadership conclude that a shift to administration by IU is advisable, we will cooperate fully in a swift transition," Purdue said at the time.

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