If you have heard me speak recently—or have followed in the media the many announcements we have made about the accomplishments of our faculty and our students—you are no doubt aware that last year was an outstanding year for Indiana University. And this year promises to be similar.

The progress we have made over this past year—in virtually every major area of importance at the university—is extraordinary. And it is a powerful testament to our vision, values, and unwavering commitment to world-class education.

In difficult financial times and often under challenging conditions, our faculty, staff, and students have been responsible for many great achievements that have made it abundantly clear that IU is unquestionably one of this state’s most successful enterprises.

Research that is making an impact

Our ongoing success in attracting research funding speaks directly to this point. Using any measure of the economic impact of such research, it is undeniable that not only is IU research leading to a deeper understanding of the world and making the world a better place, it is also making a positive economic impact on our state today.

Recently, we announced that during the last fiscal year, IU received a record $603.9 million in grants and awards for research and other sponsored programs. The new record amount surpasses the previous record mark of $525.3 million set during FY 2008 and includes record totals from federal, state, and non-profit sources.

IU faculty and staff submitted over $1 billion in research proposals and set a new record for awards, indicating that they are in the forefront in one of the most competitive environments for research funding that we have ever experienced in higher education. Our newly appointed Vice President for Research Jorge José will work to help ensure that our faculty and staff continue to demonstrate such remarkable productivity and creativity.

Additionally, IU’s Research and Technology Corporation recently completed a record-breaking fiscal year, securing over $14 million in licensing revenues from commercializing IU technologies and more than doubling the amount received the prior year. Every research dollar that IU faculty and staff bring in—and every IU invention that reaches the marketplace—translates into a stronger university and a stronger Indiana economy.

A year of record-setting progress

Last year was a record-setting year for IU on many fronts. Here is a snapshot of this remarkable progress:

  • Our faculty members received numerous accolades, including five new national and international academy memberships and Elinor Ostrom’s Nobel Prize in Economics.
  • IU Bloomington’s Matching the Promise campaign has broken all previous campaign records, and we received $342.8 million in private sector support.
  • At IU Bloomington and IUPUI, we achieved record student quality and record enrollments. This fall, we have once again set fall enrollment records at IUB and IUPUI, which include more than 42,000 and 30,000 students, respectively, as well as a university-wide enrollment record of 109,445 students.
  • We jumped from 19th to 11th nationally in terms of the number of our students who study abroad. Our record number of international students come from 146 different countries.
  • We are in a midst of one of the biggest construction periods in IU history. The current projects underway and planned at the university will add space that is roughly equivalent to that in Assembly Hall, the Wells Library, Memorial Stadium, and the IU Art Museum combined.
  • IU Athletics has entered a new era of excellence with the dedication of the new North End Zone Student-Athlete Development Center and Cook Hall Basketball Practice Facility. Under the leadership of Athletics Director Fred Glass, our athletics department is reaffirming its core values, which include integrity, academics, and athletic achievement.
  • We are helping strengthen Indiana’s economy with business incubators and engagement offices from South Bend to Evansville, record licensing revenue, and our participation in the historic transformation of Clarian Health Partners into IU Health, which will take place early next year. 
  • We set a record of $70 million in financial aid, which is helping us ensure an IU education remains affordable. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Education’s new “College Navigator” Web site, IU Bloomington has the lowest average net cost in the Big Ten.

Outside of IU, others are taking note of our progress. This past year, The Daily Beast named IU one of the top 15 “hottest schools” of the 2000s, Computerworld magazine recognized IU as one of the “Best Places to Work in IT,” and the Kelley School of Business returned to the top 10 in U.S. News and World Report’s latest rankings of undergraduate programs, while the school’s entrepreneurship program retained the No. 1 public university ranking.

Thank you

Of course, you are a main reason for IU’s extraordinary success. Through good times and bad, your steadfast commitment to IU has enabled us to maintain our strong academic programs, retain our best researchers, and build the facilities our students need for 21st century education and research.

We are deeply grateful for your support, and I personally look forward to working with you to ensure that IU will be one of the greatest universities of the 21st century.