Inspired by the Mexican holiday Día de los Muertos, the altar is a collaborative space where visitors are encouraged to leave a photograph, written memory, or object that commemorates someone who has died.
Sometimes you have to try something to understand it. That’s how it is with Nia. I first heard about it from my friend Erica De Santis a few years ago. She said her wife, Jane Fleig, goes three times a week, and no matter how she feels before class, when Jane comes home, she is always smiling. Okay, I was curious. But what is Nia?
With so much time devoted to training and playing their sport, student-athletes are seldom able to participate in typical college programs—things like service or the chance to study abroad. In an effort to change that, the national Coach for College program provides student-athletes the opportunity to visit underserved areas of rural Vietnam and give academic, athletic, and life-skills support to the region’s middle-school children.
In 2015, Martha’s House, the region’s only nonreligious emergency shelter for adults, was facing financial problems serious enough to threaten its survival. In January 2016, Shalom Community Center took over the shelter’s management and renamed it Friend’s Place. Since then, Shalom has implemented a new Housing First approach that has significantly increased the number of shelter residents who find permanent housing.
The Indiana University Maurer School of Law has received an A-plus rating for its Master of Laws program. The grade from ‘The International Jurist’ magazine recognizes a program that has been granting graduate degrees to international lawyers for more than 100 years.
Since January 2016, cashiers at Bloomingfoods’ three locations have been asking customers if they would like to round up their purchases to the next dollar as part of the co-op’s Positive Change program. And while it may seem like a small amount on any given purchase, when several thousand customers participate, that pocket change adds up.
Charlotte Zietlow is arguably Bloomington’s leading citizen, having served as a City Council member, Monroe County’s first female County Commissioner, and in countless other political and community roles. Now, at 82, she’s written a book that chronicles the city’s political history, explores the fragility of democracy, and demonstrates how ordinary citizens have the power to change their government.
Twenty years ago, Indiana University handed out its first varsity “I” letters to female athletes—91 in all—at the June Cream and Crimson Weekend festivities. Three local women, all members of IU’s 1973 Final Four women’s basketball team, were among those whose varsity letters were awarded long after they were due.
William R. Morris Jr. is well-known as “Brother William” on WFIU’s Friday afternoon “Soul Kitchen” edition of Just You and Me. But as an attorney, Morris is one of the eight lawyers and three paralegals who staff the Bloomington office of Indiana Legal Services (ILS). His focus is on housing and homelessness.
Frances Trix has been working with refugee populations most of her life, first in her native Detroit, and later in places like Kosovo and Macedonia. Fluent in Turkish and Arabic, Trix has recently become involved with Syrian refugees in Turkey. She’s particularly concerned with the plight of children.
Housed in the building that served as the African American grades K–9 school until the end of local school segregation in 1951, the Banneker Community Center’s Evans-Porter Memorial Library is a repository of approximately 2,000 volumes of African American history and culture, reference materials, and adult and children’s fiction.
When you slip on the goggles in the Reality Lab, a virtual reality-enabled classroom in The Media School at Indiana University, it takes a minute to master the hand-held controllers. Once you do, you know that soon every university will have a room like this. Why? Because virtual reality (VR) delivers a vivid, convincing sensory experience you can’t get in the real world.
Bloomington resident Laura Collins woke up the day after the 2016 election and could not believe Donald Trump was president. “It devastated me,” Collins recalls. “I had to take the day off work.” When the shock wore off, Collins decided she had to do more than take a day off work. She had to take action and make a difference.
Back in 1968, a group of “church ladies” stumbled upon life on the other side of the tracks. The women were shocked to see the deprivation that existed in the neighborhood known as Pigeon Hill. The sight of ramshackle housing inspired the group to lend a helping hand.
Last year, Marc Tschida, owner of Press Puzzles, began selling a limited-edition, 385-piece puzzle depicting the painting Watson and the Shark by John Singleton Copely. The wooden puzzle featured 15 shark-shaped pieces and sold for $95. “I really wanted to sell shark-themed puzzles to pay for a cage-diving trip with great white sharks. It’s an expensive trip,” Tschida explains.
Morgan Mohr received the news in November that she has been accepted as a 2017 Rhodes Scholar, one of just 32 selected from 882 endorsed American applicants and the only recipient from a Big Ten university.
The Bloomington Volunteer Network has evolved over the years. When it was established as the Bloomington Volunteer Action Center in 1980 by Mayor Frank McCloskey, the department interviewed, screened, and assigned volunteers to local nonprofit organizations. It also logged all of the volunteers’ hours.