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In Brief: Fall-Winter 2018

More Free Speech

In the fall semester, IUP embarked on a Year of Free Speech, continuing conversations that started across campus last spring. In September, IUP’s Six O’clock Series presented a panel discussion on balancing free speech and an inclusive learning environment and, a week later, brought to campus framers of the US Constitution—as portrayed by IUP faculty members—to share their insights into creating the document.

Videos new to the IUP Free Speech Project website include another installment by Political Science faculty member Gwen Torges on remedying hateful speech by encouraging more speech; the video Words Matter, in which four IUP students describe their experiences with hurtful speech; and man-on-the-street interviews with students on whether the government should be able to punish journalists for what they publish. IUP’s Elephant in the Room series, which focuses on diversity, inclusion, and equity, touched on issues surrounding free speech during its fall workshops. And in November, the university welcomed Vic Walczak, legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania, for a discussion on why the First Amendment protects hate speech. More details are at the IUP Free Speech website.

Fall Numbers

IUP’s total enrollment for the fall 2018 semester is 11,581. That includes 11,325 students (9,215 undergraduate and 2,110 graduate) in credit-bearing programs and another 256 in career-preparation programs through the Academy of Culinary Arts, the Criminal Justice Training Center, paramedic training, and the Clinical Medical Assistant program.

The new freshman class has an average high school grade point average of 3.27 and an average SAT score of 1017. Both figures are up slightly from last year: 3.24 and 1011, respectively.

Also in the fall, the university enrolled 1,009 military-affiliated students, up 8 percent from last year and up 77 percent from 2015.

The university’s total enrollment in credit-bearing programs has dropped 8 percent since last fall. IUP remains the second largest school, behind West Chester University, in Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education. Combined enrollment across all 14 State System universities is reportedly down 4 percent since last year and down nearly 18 percent since 2010.

According to school and State System officials, a decreasing number of high school graduates in parts of the state and growing competition among colleges and universities to recruit from that shrinking pool are the primary contributors to enrollment decline.

Leadership Retirements

In August, Rhonda Luckey retired as IUP’s vice president for Student Affairs. She served the university for 30 years, first as administrative director of Pechan Health Center and then as associate vice president for Student Affairs before she was named vice president. Her accomplishments form a long list that includes oversight of IUP’s dining master plan and Residential Revival project. Colleagues, family members, and friends made gifts to mark Luckey’s service, and the university’s Center for Health and Well-Being has been named in her honor.

After 20 years of service as dean of the College of Fine Arts, Michael Hood retired at the end of the spring semester. Hood’s accomplishments include leading the expansion of Cogswell Hall and the project that connected Waller Hall and Fisher Auditorium to create a single Performing Arts Center. Responsible for a variety of curriculum enhancements, Hood led IUP’s efforts to become an All-Steinway School and to open the Wood Center and the IUP Community Music School. He also oversaw IUP’s acquisition of the Pogorzelski-Yankee memorial organ and has been active in the direction and development of the University Museum.