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Ivy Tech's Bloomington campus recognizes excellence in volunteerism


April 29, 2009

Bloomington, Ind. Ivy Tech’s Bloomington campus kicked-off its annual signature event, the O’Bannon Institute for Community Service, by honoring faculty, staff, students and community partners during the Civic Engagement Awards Ceremony. The Awards Ceremony was held on April 29 at 4 p.m. in the Student Commons. Award categories included Excellence in Service Learning, Excellence in Community Involvement, Excellence in Volunteerism and finally the Jeanine C. Rae Humanitarian award. 

John Whikehart, Chancellor of Ivy Tech’s Bloomington campus says it is a great pleasure to recognize those who dedicate their time to civic engagement. “I want to thank all of the winners for the work they do. Whether it is the result of a college-sponsored service-learning project or just a desire to volunteer, their work illustrates their need to give back to the communities in which they live. They are changing lives.”

As part of the annual ceremonies, Ivy Tech - Bloomington ( honors a community partner that it works with throughout the year with Excellence in Community Involvement Awards.  This year’s recipient was Hoosier Honor Flight, a non-profit organization which was created solely to honor America’s veterans. Hoosier Honor Flight transports veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit their memorials. Ivy Tech adjunct faculty member, John Tilford, was instrumental in creating and sustaining this local Bloomington group.

Recipient of the Excellence in Service Learning award was Ivy Tech adjunct faculty member Greg Mitchell. Mitchell organized and ran a service learning project that required his creative writing students to plan and run creative writing workshops for fourth and fifth grade students at Binford Elementary.

Recipients of the Excellence in Volunteerism award include Ivy Tech staff member Kevin Ratcliff, for his work with the Indiana Search and Rescue Association, and Ivy Tech Student Ambassador Shea McMahon, for his work at numerous Ivy Tech events and for giving his time as a summer camp counselor.

Ivy Tech - Bloomington student Sabrina Carter was the recipient of the Jeanine C. Rae Humanitarian award. The humanitarian award recognizes a student whose attitude and way of life demonstrates concern for the well-being of others, has done an exceptional amount of volunteer work and has been a morale booster for her peers. Carter, as part of a service learning project for her accounting course, discovered the Midwestern disaster relief credit that was missed by software, and lead to higher returns for many. Carter was preparing income tax returns for a woman whose return also included a first-time homebuyer credit. The customer received over $14,000 in returns. “That was pretty cool,” Carter said. “She was very excited, and I would be too!”

The Jeanine C. Rae Humanitarian award has been earned by 34 Ivy Tech students since its inception in 1985.

Ivy Tech Community College is the state’s largest public post-secondary institution and the nation’s largest singly-accredited statewide community college system with more than 120,000 students enrolled annually.  Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana.  It serves as the state's engine of workforce development, offering affordable degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its community along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana.  It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.