Empowering Students for Success: IU Northwest Launches Groups Scholars Program

Empowering Students for Success: IU Northwest Launches Groups Scholars Program

Gary, Ind. – Indiana University Bloomington and Indiana University Northwest are proud to announce the development of the Groups Scholars Program on the IU Northwest campus starting June 2022. This inaugural effort will closely model and be supported by Bloomington’s Groups Scholars Program.

Created in 1968, the Groups Scholars Program increases college attendance among first-generation and underrepresented students at Indiana University. In addition to financial assistance, the program includes academic and social support to help students attain their IU degrees. Therefore, IU Northwest will focus on increasing the graduation rates of degree-seeking students.

“We are extremely excited for our students about this effort. This is the first time that the Groups Scholars Program has extended to a regional campus,” says Ken Iwama, chancellor of IU Northwest. “Our campus is the most diverse campus within Indiana University. This program complements our work to increase the graduation rates of students of color and other underrepresented students in higher education.”

Through a collaborative IU recruitment process and program development, Mary Stephenson, director of the IU Bloomington Groups Program, and Dorothy Frink, associate vice chancellor for Enrollment Management at IU Northwest, will accept 40 students into the Groups Scholars Program at IU Northwest this year. Qualified students will receive a summer scholarship covering tuition, fees, and books for a six-week summer course. Vicki Román-Lagunas, executive vice chancellor for Academic Affairs, says, “Faculty will design a course that merges academic skills and resources to ease the transition into college and build academic success for future semesters.”

Iwama and Frink, with the assistance of the Office of the Vice President for Diversity, Equity, and Multicultural Affairs, are ensuring that scholars will receive up to $1,000 for four years of their undergraduate education. In addition, wrap-around support such as tutoring, academic advising, mentoring, and a sense of community will help scholars throughout their college journey. Groups Scholars will enjoy social activities off-campus in addition to program benefits. Stephenson commends Chancellor Iwama, Associate Vice Chancellor Frink, and their campus team stating, “They worked diligently to create a Groups Program that exemplifies the essence of student support and success.”

“More than a supportive network of resources, the Groups Scholars Program serves as a pivotal foundation in students’ college experiences,” says James Wimbush, vice president for diversity, equity, and multicultural affairs, dean of The University Graduate School, and Johnson Chair for Diversity and Leadership. “The program provides students with opportunities and connections that will enrich their lives long after college,” he notes.

A recommendation is the only way students can gain admittance to the program. In addition, students must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, be first-generation, and meet the income and eligibility guidelines for Pell Grants. To obtain the list of recommenders and additional information for the Groups Scholar Program at IU Northwest, contact Dorothy Frink at defrink@iun.edu.

About Indiana University Northwest

One of seven campuses of Indiana University, IU Northwest is located in metropolitan Northwest Indiana, approximately 30 miles southeast of Chicago and 10 miles from the Indiana Dunes National Park. The campus has a diverse student population of approximately 3,500 degree-seeking students and 1,800 dual-credit students and has been recognized by the Department of Education as a minority and Hispanic serving institution. The campus offers Associate, Baccalaureate, and Master’s degrees from the College of Arts and Sciences, the College of Health and Human Services, the School of Business and Economics, the School of the Arts, and the School of Education. The campus is also host to IU School of Medicine-Northwest-Gary, the region’s only four-year medical doctorate program. As a student-centered campus, IU Northwest is committed to academic excellence characterized by a love of ideas and achievement in learning, discovery, creativity, research, and community engagement. Indiana University Northwest is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer committed to achieving excellence through diversity. The University actively encourages applications from women, minorities, veterans, persons with disabilities, and members of other underrepresented groups.