News Releases

Posted November 19, 2020

LifeStream Services is partnering with local organizations to offer a new exercise program for older adults. Geri-Fit® is a 45-minute video-led strength training exercise class. Enrollment is open to older adults of all ages and fitness levels.

Maintaining a healthy exercise routine has a variety of benefits for older adults. The Geri-Fit® program can increase muscular strength, improve balance and coordination, boost motor skills and reaction time, enhance flexibility and gait, lessen arthritic conditions, and help manage chronic disease.

LifeStream Services has partnered with Centerville-Abington Senior Center, Farmland Community Center, Forest Park Senior Center, New Castle Senior Center, Richmond Senior Community Center, and Western-Wayne Senior Center to offer Geri-Fit®. The program is also available virtually where participants can download the exercise videos to perform from the comfort of their homes.

Those interested in learning more about Geri-Fit® or participating virtually should visit or call LifeStream at 800-589-1121.

LifeStream is an Area Agency on Aging that works to improve the quality of life for people at risk of losing their independence. LifeStream serves over 19,000 seniors and people with disabilities throughout 12 counties in Indiana including Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Franklin, Grant, Henry, Jay, Madison, Randolph, Rush, Union, and Wayne. Programs and services include care management, transportation, in-home care, Senior Cafes, home-delivered meals, guardianships, caregiver support, home modifications, information and assistance, volunteer opportunities and more. For more about the organization call (800) 589-1121 or visit online at and follow on Facebook at

IU East's Online Math Program Stays Ahead of the Competition

Posted November 19, 2020

When you are one of the best, you focus on staying the best - and getting even better.

Supplied Photo:  Markus Pomper
Markus Pomper is the department chair for mathematics and an associate professor for the IU East School of Natural Science and Mathematics.
Supplied Photo: Nayeong Kong
Nayeong Kong is an assistant professor of mathematics for the IU East School of Natural Science and Mathematics.
Supplied Photo: Alex Ness
Alex Ness of San Francisco is pursuing his mathematics degree online at IU East. Ness is musician who is using his math knowledge to electronically alter his music. With a bachelor's degree from Harvard College and a master's from New York University, Ness plans to use his mathematics degree to qualify for teaching credentials and to explore mathematical uses in musical composition. He is an educational consultant for Scholar Co. in San Francisco.

You keep building a better community and better communications. And you develop solid plans to keep you ahead of the competition.

Indiana University East finds itself in those positions with its burgeoning online math program, which has grown from nine to 350 students in 11 years.

The growth is likely to continue in the near future because of a positive mix of reasons that include high national rankings and positive reviews around the web.

"Students are very interested in us right now and we want to stay ahead of the curve," says Markus Pomper, department chair and associate professor of mathematics at IU East. "What sets us apart is we really engage our students. We tailor to students who otherwise wouldn't be able to attend."

Other top reasons cited by students for seeking degrees through IU East include: flexibility of study time, low costs, friendly interactions and the ability to transfer many credits for previous collegiate work.

Pomper doesn't want online students just studying and taking tests. He wants them to be involved in the process of learning - with their teachers and with their fellow students - even though most will never set foot on the campus in Richmond. "We want to create community," he says.

The program has been a perfect fit for current student Alex Ness, a musical composer and private tutor from San Francisco.

"It feels great to be in a community, very diverse, very friendly," Ness says. "There's a lot of work done by the professors to make the atmosphere friendly. It feels good to contribute to the class."

Despite the uncertainties created by the COVID-19 pandemic, enrollment is still expected to accelerate as students moved to all-online classes and IU East has responded.

"I believe that online education will develop more and more," says Nayeong Kong, assistant professor of mathematics. "At the beginning of quarantine, other universities were in a panic to start online teaching. But now they realize that (it) is essential and necessary for education in the future. And in my opinion, I think that online teaching will be the standard and general form of education in the future."

In that realm, she and Pomper are devising plans to keep IU East attractive to a diverse range of students who could live anywhere and be at any stage in their careers.

"We are trying to meet all the demand as we can," Pomper says. "We know what we are doing. We found ways to communicate, to make classes engaging and interactive."

He and Kong met this summer to plan more ways to tailor the program to address more needs and challenges of students.

They aim to use platforms such as Canvas and Zoom to create more instructor-student interactions and to offer more feedback.

They also aim to focus more of the curriculum on the process and path to an answer, not just on a correct answer.

Pomper hopes to add classes in finance in the near future that are geared toward professional testing.

Kong started working in online education just last year after being hired at IU East. She quickly came to see its virtues, its values and areas of opportunity.

"Engaging students is a weak part of online teaching. To overcome this weak point, I need to provide homework problems and quizzes every week," she says. "And then I need to use online office hours and discussion sessions on Canvas well."

Kong also has been challenged personally during the pandemic -- in a wonderful, stay-at-home way. She and husband, Seonguk Kim, welcomed a baby named Rian in mid-July.

Pomper and Kong provide regular Zoom office hours for students to work through math problems.

"Students typically ask questions and I answer them. They can see me writing and talking and know what is going on," Pomper says. "We are very cognizant that students don't learn in isolation. They will take anything that helps along the way."

He takes a poll at the start of each semester to find out the best time to hold the hour-long office sessions, but they also are recorded so any student can watch them later.

Online learning can take place anywhere and at any time. Students can take part wherever the web can reach. They can live halfway around the world or on the East or West Coasts. They can live in eastern Indiana and have family and job commitments that make it better to take classes from home. They could constantly be on the move as soldiers, pro-athletes, musicians, doctors or business travelers.

Pomper vividly recalls this fluid situation that found a flexible solution after a man faced a travel and housing crisis in the middle of his senior seminar class.

"He had been living in Eastern Europe, but needed to return home to the U.S. when the pandemic started," Pomper said. "For a few weeks, he was shuffling around at friends and relatives, sleeping on couches and spare bedrooms, until he could find a permanent place where he could set up his computer. We managed to get him to graduation."

That whatever-it-takes graduation focus is standard in the online math program at IU East, where flexibility is a major attraction. Some online students take classes full-time, while others take classes one at a time; some go year-round while others stick to a traditional school year.

It could take a year to complete a degree or two years or four or eight.

Some even step away from the program periodically "and pick up where they left off," Pomper says. "We cater to that; let them take their time."

Many online students already have college degrees. The majority of them take classes "specifically for their careers," he says. "Some want to go to graduate school or continue in business and finance."

Mary Evanston earned a bachelor's degree in math this year and has qualified for the engineering master's program at the Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering in Artificial Intelligence.

"Mary is a professional," Pomper says. "She chose this program because it allows her to forge ahead in her career."

Evanston has been employed full-time as a federal business development executive in the Washington, D.C., area.

Zoe Skovgaard Asta, a librarian in Denmark, earned a bachelor's degree online this year and enjoyed the experience so much that she now is working toward a master's certificate in math from IU East.

For more in-depth information on Evanston and Asta, see the accompanying story.

Ness, age 37, aims to complete his online bachelor's degree within the next year.

IU East offers the flexibility he needs with a busy and multifaceted professional life. "You don't need to commit your whole life to it," he says.

The program offers another major appeal, especially for non-traditional students who already hold degrees in other fields. They can get credit for classes earned at other institutions. That means it's possible to earn a bachelor's in math online by taking just 40 hours of core classes.

"We make sure we count work they have completed before," Pomper says. "If they have a B.S. in business, or in any other discipline, they don't need to take general-education courses."

Ness graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor's degree from Harvard College and also earned a master's degree from New York University in music.

He serves as an educational consultant for Scholar Co. in San Francisco. He also helped found Playground Sessions, a music-education software company based in New York City, where he has worked alongside music icons like Quincy Jones and YouTube piano star David Sides.

Playground blends software with the human touch for students to learn to play musical instruments.

Ness wants a math degree for several reasons: to qualify for teaching credentials, to explore mathematical uses in musical composition and to more deeply explore the subject.

"I always had an interest in math, but focused on music and music technology instead," he says. "I took math courses for fun. That made it easy to pick up where I left off."

When it became time to pick it up again, he started looking for online programs. "IU East popped up as a reputable program with good credentials and was well reviewed," he said. "The enrollment was totally painless. It was very smooth getting in."

It's been smooth sailing since then for Ness. He has enjoyed online classes and the camaraderie at IU East that includes active student forums. "There's more social interaction than with traditional classes," he says. "When you share online, you have time to digest a post, talk and work things out."

He's definitely an advocate of taking online classes mid-career.

Rachel Hughes Selected as Executive Director of the Model T Ford Club of America

Posted November 17, 2020

Supplied Photo: Rachel HughesRachel Hughes of Richmond, Indiana was recently selected to serve as Executive Director of the Model T Ford Club of America (MTFCA) and the Model T Museum. The announcement was made by the current MTFCA Executive Director, Susan Yaeger, who will be retiring on December 18, 2020.

Hughes brings over 30 years of experience in the nonprofit field to her new position, including work for the Indiana Association of United Ways, the United Way of Whitewater Valley, and the Wayne County Foundation. She is an active volunteer both in the community and the state having served on the Board of Aviation Commission for the City of Richmond, Board of Advisors for the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at IU East, the Kiwanis Club of Richmond, the Executive Committee of the Alumni Association for the Center on Philanthropy, the Women's Philanthropy Institute, and the Association of Fundraising Professionals state board.

Hughes has lived in Richmond since 1994. She and her husband, Ron, own the Tin Lizzie Cafe and Tin Cup Tea and Gift Shop in Richmond. They own a 1924 Model T Ford Roadster and have been active in the local Henry's Hoosiers chapter and also volunteered at the 2008 Centennial T-Party. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Indiana State University, a Master's degree from Indiana University, and certificates in Fund Raising Management and Nonprofit Executive Leadership.

The MTFCA is the largest Model T club in the world, organized to bring people together who are interested in the Model T Ford, its history, its evolution, and its place in the American scene. Hughes will be the fourth Executive Director in the organization's 55-year history.

The MTFCA is a 501c3 nonprofit corporation that owns and operates the Model T Museum in Richmond. The Museum is consistently rated by TripAdvisor as #1 Things to Do in Richmond. It is a destination point for Model T and history enthusiasts from all over the U.S. and other countries as well.

Hughes can be reached by email at:

Reid Health Reinstates No-Visitor Policy Because of COVID-19 Surge

Posted November 17, 2020

Effective at 7 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 19, Reid Health is reinstating a greatly restricted visitation policy on its main campus and in physician offices because of a surge in COVID-19 patients that is keeping the hospital on critical bed status - and breaking records for patients being treated with the virus.

"We appreciate everyone's understanding as we take these steps to reduce in every way we can this explosion of COVID infections in our community. We must protect our staff in order to continue serving the healthcare needs of our community." said Craig Kinyon, Reid Health President/CEO. The hospital hit a new high of 92 patients over the weekend in COVID containment areas, and that number was still at 91 Tuesday afternoon. He said exceptions will be made in specific situations, such as end-of-life, in the Family Birthing Center and for outpatient surgery patients. "But in almost all cases, we will restrict visitation to virtual platforms, such as smart phones and tablets."

Reducing traffic to and from the campus helps further reduce risk of spread of COVID-19, he said. "While the hospital is one of the safest places to be, there is no reason to increase our susceptibility to spread of the virus from people who do not have to be on campus."

The restrictions include:

  • A "No Visitor" policy with exceptions for certain situations such as end of life, the Family Birthing Center, minor patients seeking care in the Emergency Department, or outpatient surgery.
  • No visitors to the following retail areas: Ginkgo Boutique, Espresso Bar, Café at Twelve Hundred in Richmond, Connors Post Café in Connersville, plus the ATM and vending machines on the main campus in Connersville.
  • Healthworks in Connersville will limit capacity based on state guidelines on county color-coding. Current capacity is 25 since Fayette County is "red."

Kinyon said the hospital has been at critical capacity for several weeks, and every step is being taken to avoid having to reduce any other health services as was done in the Spring.

For FAQs and daily updates, visit the www.ReidHealth/safe information page.

IU East Presents Scholarships for High School Students During Virtual Counselors' Breakfast

Posted November 12, 2020

Indiana University East distributed scholarships to area high school guidance counselors from Indiana and Ohio during its virtual Counselors' Breakfast held November 6 on Zoom.

This is the 14th consecutive year that IU East has hosted the Counselors' Breakfast. Over 80 guidance counselors attended. This year's theme, "We Love Guidance Counselors." included a welcome from Michelle Malott, executive vice chancellor for Academic Affairs.

Molly Vanderpool, executive director for recruitment and transitions for the Office of Admissions at IU East, hosted the virtual event.

"We are thrilled to continue to offer these scholarships this year," Vanderpool said.

The virtual program also provided guidance counselors with information on IU East's new test optional enrollment policy and scholarships, messages from IU East Office of Admissions staff and current students, and information sharing about the campus, academic programs, enrollment process and more provided through an online game of Kahoot!, an online game-based learning platform.

Counselors attending the virtual event received scholarship nominations to give to students in their high schools that meet the academic and admission requirements at IU East.

Every guidance counselor received online vouchers for eight, four-year scholarships ranging from $7,000 to $30,000 to distribute to qualified high school seniors.

For more information, visit

Red Wolf Athletics Challenge Is Underway

Posted November 12, 2020

Supplied Photo: Basketball player dribbles down the court.
The Red Wolf Athletics Challenge began November 9.
The men's and women's basketball teams are fundraising separately to raise $2,500 and unlock a matching gift from a Community Champion.
Supplied Photo: Man hitting golf ball onto a green.
The men's and women's golf teams are fundraising together to reach the $2,500 goal.
Supplied Photo: Male Soccer players kick ball.
The men's and women's soccer teams will raise the $2,500 goal separately.
Supplied Photo: Woman prepares to hit tennis ball with a racket against a blue background.
Men's and women's tennis teams will participate in the challenge together.
Supplied Photo: Woman jumps hurdles on indoor track.
The men's and women's cross country teams and the men's and women's track and field teams will work together to reach the $2,500 goal.
Supplied Photo: Woman hits volleyball during a game.
The IU East volleyball team will fund raise on its own to reach $2,500 goal and reach the Community Champion match.

The second annual Red Wolf Athletics Challenge is underway. The challenge began Monday, November 9, during Homecoming week.

Indiana University East's NAIA athletics teams are challenged to raise $2,500 per program in donations from now until November 20.

Teams that reach the $2,500 goal unlock a matching $2,500 gift from a community champion, resulting in a potential total benefit of at least $5,000 for teams meeting the challenge.

Red Wolf teams will use the contributions for needed equipment and gear, for scholarships, and for special travel and new experiences for the student-athletes.

IU East Director of Athletics Joe Griffin said the challenge match focuses on supporting student-athletes as they improve their performance in the classroom as well as on the field or court.

"Our Community Champions and supporters have a lot of Red Wolf pride," Griffin said. "The challenge is a great way for our student-athletes to participate in developing their programs while connecting with the fans and community members that celebrate their accomplishments."

Red Wolves Athletics is continuing to offer events this fall, with limited spectator access due to COVID-19 guidelines established by the NAIA, River States Conference, IU and IU East, and Wayne County.

"The student-athlete experience has been impacted by COVID, and support in this challenge would give the department more means to make the student-athlete experience as positive as it is supposed to be," Griffin said.

For the Athletics Challenge, teams that practice and travel together are grouped together. Programs include:

  • Men's Basketball
  • Women's Basketball
  • Men's and Women's Cross Country/Track & Field
  • Men's Golf
  • Women's Golf
  • Men's Soccer
  • Women's Soccer
  • Men's and Women's Tennis
  • Volleyball

IU East athletes succeeded in competition and in the classroom during the 2019-20 school year.

The Red Wolf athletics program won more River States Conference championships in 2019-20 than any school in the league. IU East athletes also posted a 3.28 GPA during the 2019-20 school year, the highest department GPA in program history.

The inaugural Red Wolf Athletics Challenge in 2019 raised nearly $50,000 in total contributions.

To support an IU East team, contact IU East Director of Gift Development Paula Kay King at 765-973-8331 or at

For more information, visit

LifeStream Services Partnered with Milestone Contractors for Fall Yard Clean Up for Seniors

Posted November 12, 2020

Supplied Photo:  2 men and 1 woman in reflective vests in front of a pile of fall leaves.

LifeStream Services partnered with Milestone Contractors for a Fall Yard Clean Up on November 2. The volunteers cleaned up the yards of 12 senior citizens in Richmond who are unable to leave their homes or do not have someone to assist them.

The 12 Milestone Contractor volunteers cleaned up leaves and debris from the yards in an effort to prevent falls. According to the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging, falls are the leading cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries for older Americans with one in four Americans aged 65+ experiencing a fall each year. Falls can not only threaten the safety of older adults, but also their independence.

LifeStream Services is dedicated to helping seniors maintain their independence and quality of life. By partnering with organizations like Milestone Contractors, LifeStream can take the necessary steps to keep seniors safe. For more information on LifeStream's fall prevention programs and volunteer opportunities, please visit or contact Laura Bray, Volunteer Services Administrator, at 765-759-3372 or

LifeStream is an Area Agency on Aging that works to improve the quality of life for people at risk of losing their independence. LifeStream serves over 19,000 seniors and people with disabilities throughout 12 counties in Indiana including Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Franklin, Grant, Henry, Jay, Madison, Randolph, Rush, Union, and Wayne. Programs and services include care management, transportation, in-home care, Senior Cafes, home-delivered meals, guardianships, caregiver support, home modifications, information and assistance, volunteer opportunities and more. For more about the organization call (800) 589-1121 or visit online at and follow on Facebook at

DNR offers free admission to veterans, active-duty military, Nov. 11

Posted November 9, 2020

All veterans and active-duty military personnel, and everyone in their vehicle, will be admitted free to DNR state parks, reservoir properties, state forest recreation areas and state off-road vehicle riding areas on Veterans Day, Wednesday, Nov. 11.

This includes admission to Falls of the Ohio State Park's Interpretive Center.

"We appreciate the sacrifices and service of our veterans and active-duty military and look forward to recognizing them with a day to explore some of the best outdoor places in our state," said Terry Coleman, director of Indiana State Parks.

Veterans and military personnel should present ID or evidence of military service where entrance gates are in operation. For proof of military status, gate attendants will accept:

  • Discharge papers (veteran's DD Form 214)
  • Veteran license plates: Ex-POW, Purple Heart, Disabled Hoosier Veteran, Pearl Harbor Survivor. Veteran license plates also include:
    • Air Force Veteran
    • Army Veteran
    • Coast Guard Veteran
    • Marine Corps Veteran
    • Merchant Marine Veteran
    • Navy Veteran
  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Disability Award Letter
  • Veterans hunting and fishing license
  • Documents showing veteran benefits with veteran's name on document
  • Any other certificate or verification letter or form that establishes past or present military service

For general information about state park, reservoir, forest properties, and state off-road vehicle riding areas, see

For information about interpretive programs at state parks and reservoirs, see

To view all DNR news releases, please see

COVID-19 Hospitalizations Exceed Record at Reid Health

Posted November 9, 2020

The increasing number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients is keeping the hospital at "critical" bed status, and health officials fear Reid Health will have to cut back on services if the trend continues.

"We are asking everyone to please, please not ignore masking, distancing and other safety measures," said Thomas Huth, M.D., Vice President of Medical Affairs at Reid Health. The health system Friday set a new, ominous record when it listed 68 patients in COVID containment areas. That number surpasses the highest number of 64 that happened early in the pandemic, Dr. Huth said. And with cases continuing to go up, he expects the number will increase. A record number of daily COVID admissions - 20 - was a factor in an overall record one-day admissions number of 63 patients on Thursday.

All the data underscores the serious impact COVID is having on the community and the health system. "It's vital for everyone to do their part in trying to turn this increase around," he said. "Lives really do depend on it. So take precautions. Do it for your family. Do it for our staff who are the heroes caring for these patients."

The health system has posted statistics almost daily since the pandemic began hitting the area in March. The number had peaked at 64 in April, and dropped as low as 11 in July before an upward trend began in August and again in October. Wayne County posted more COVID-19 deaths in October than had happened since the outbreak began.

Reid Health recently tightened its visitor restrictions implemented early in the pandemic, with the changes including allowing non-COVID patients only one designated visitor per day.

Dr. Huth said the hospital has already had to take some additional steps to deal with its continuing shortage of available beds, including moving some non-COVID patients to temporary areas. If the number of admissions continue to increase, the health system may be faced with ceasing elective surgeries or even having to divert patients to other facilities - something that would be considered extremely rare. And many other regional health systems are facing a similar uptick in COVID-19 patients requiring hospitalization.

"We are clearly in another wave, so mitigation steps have never been more important. Wear the mask. They are proven effective in reducing the spread of COVID. And remember that a mask is more about keeping you from making someone else sick, though it does help protect you as well," Dr. Huth said. "Stay home when you are sick. Wash your hands. Practice social distancing."

The latest wave is having the most detrimental impact on higher-risk older people, he said. He's also seen research that indicates younger people who don't get sick but still carry the virus are a major factor in spreading the disease to the more vulnerable.

Outbreaks in long-term care facilities, where the residents are not going into the community, are getting the virus from the people who are out and about. "If you are a young person who isn't afraid of getting sick, please think about the most vulnerable in the community whose very lives could be put at risk if you unknowingly carry the infection to them."

State park properties to temporarily close for deer hunts

Posted November 9, 2020

Select Indiana state park properties will temporarily close in the coming weeks so controlled deer management hunts can take place.

Each hunt runs two days. The first is on Monday, Nov. 16, and Tuesday, Nov. 17. The second is on Monday, Nov. 30, and Tuesday, Dec. 1. Participating state park properties will close to the general public on the evening before each of the two hunts.

Participating state park properties are: Brown County, Chain O'Lakes, Charlestown, Fort Harrison, Harmonie, Lincoln, McCormick's Creek, Ouabache, Pokagon, Potato Creek, Prophetstown, Shades, Spring Mill, Turkey Run, Versailles, and Whitewater Memorial state parks, as well as Trine State Recreation Area.

These state park properties will re-open the morning after each two-day hunt. All Indiana state park properties not mentioned will be operating under normal hours.

Indiana DNR biologists evaluate which state park properties require a deer management hunt each year based on habitat recovery and previous harvest rates at each park property. The state park properties are home to numerous natural communities that serve as significant habitat. The deer management hunts help control browsing by deer to a level that ensures habitat for native plants and animals.

Only individuals selected from the draw may participate at any site.

A full report on the 2019 deer management hunts is at The 2020 report will be available in March 2021.

Information regarding 2021 state park deer management hunts, including online applications, will be available next summer at on The application deadline is usually in mid-August of the year in which the hunts are to take place.

To view all statewide DNR news releases, please see

American Heart Association Honors Reid Health for Quality Stroke Care

Posted November 9, 2020

Reid Health has been recognized for the quality of its stroke care by the American Heart Association.

Reid Health received the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's Get With The Guidelines®-Stroke Silver Plus Quality Achievement Award. The award recognizes the hospital's commitment to ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment according to nationally recognized, research-based guidelines based on the latest scientific evidence.Reid Health earned the award by meeting specific quality achievement measures for the diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients at a set level for a designated period. These measures include evaluation of the proper use of medications and other stroke treatments aligned with the most up-to-date, evidence-based guidelines with the goal of speeding recovery and reducing death and disability for stroke patients. Before discharge, patients should also receive education on managing their health, get a follow-up visit scheduled, as well as other care transition interventions.

"Reid Health is dedicated to improving the quality of care for our stroke patients by implementing the American Heart Association's Get With The Guidelines-Stroke initiative," said Misti Foust-Cofield, Reid Health Vice President/Chief Nursing Officer. "The tools and resources provided help us track and measure our success in meeting evidenced-based clinical guidelines developed to improve patient outcomes."

The recognition also included the Target: StrokeSM Elite Plus award. To qualify for this recognition, hospitals must meet quality measures developed to reduce the time between the patient's arrival at the hospital and treatment with the clot-buster tissue plasminogen activator, or tPA, the only drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat ischemic stroke.

And Reid Health additionally received the Association's Target: Type 2 Honor Roll award. To qualify for this recognition, hospitals must meet quality measures developed with more than 90 % of compliance for 12 consecutive months for the "Overall Diabetes Cardiovascular Initiative Composite Score."

Reid Health is designated as a Primary Stroke Center featuring a comprehensive system for rapid diagnosis and treatment of stroke patients admitted to the emergency department.

"We are pleased to recognize Reid Health for its commitment to stroke care," said Lee H. Schwamm, M.D., national chairperson of the Quality Oversight Committee and Executive Vice Chair of Neurology, Director of Acute Stroke Services, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts. "Research has shown that hospitals adhering to clinical measures through the Get With The Guidelines quality improvement initiative can often see fewer readmissions and lower mortality rates."

Earlier this year, Reid Health - Connersville Emergency Department was also granted a three-year certification as a Stroke Ready Center by Healthcare Facilities Accreditation Program (HFAP), the nation's original independent, accreditation program. Certification confirms that stroke care at Reid Health - Connersville is providing high quality care as determined by an independent, external process of evaluation.

The certification for the Connersville location came at the same time the Reid Health Primary Stroke Center was also reaccredited for another three years.

According to the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association, stroke is the No. 5 cause of death and a leading cause of adult disability in the United States. On average, someone in the U.S. suffers a stroke every 40 seconds and nearly 795,000 people suffer a new or recurrent stroke each year.

About Get With The Guidelines®

Get With The Guidelines® is the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association's hospital-based quality improvement program that provides hospitals with tools and resources to increase adherence to the latest research-based guidelines. Developed with the goal of saving lives and hastening recovery, Get With The Guidelines has touched the lives of more than 9 million patients since 2001. For more information, visit

Scholarships Available for Civil Engineering Students

Posted November 5, 2020

INDIANAPOLIS – The Indiana Department of Transportation is offering civil engineering students scholarships of up to $3,125 per semester, and paid employment during summer breaks and upon graduation.

Students must be accepted or enrolled full time in one of Indiana's certified civil engineering schools and apply using the form at Applications for the 2021-2022 school year must be submitted by December 31, 2020.

INDOT's scholarship program uses federal funds to offer $3,125 per semester or $2,083 per trimester for up to five years of post-secondary civil engineering education. Scholarship funds can be applied to educational expenses, fees and books. In return, recipients will work for INDOT in full-time, paid positions during their summer breaks and upon graduation.

Students must be accepted or enrolled full time in one of Indiana's Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) certified civil engineering programs. Eligible programs include Purdue University, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, Purdue University Fort Wayne, University of Southern Indiana, Trine University, Purdue University Northwest, University of Evansville, University of Notre Dame, and Valparaiso University.

Learn more about the INDOT Engineer Scholarship program the application process at Applications for the 2020-2021 school year must be submitted by Thursday, December 31, 2020

Students or parents with questions may contact Talent Development Manager Adam Beasley at or 317-234-7930.

LifeStream Providing SHIP Counseling During Open Enrollment

Posted November 5, 2020

LifeStream Services has trained State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP) counselors on staff to help navigate the complexities of healthcare during the Open Enrollment period which ends on December 7. SHIP provides free, impartial health insurance information and is not affiliated with any insurance company.

SHIP can help answer questions on Medicare, Medicare Supplemental Insurance, Medicare Advantage, Medicaid, long-term care insurance, prescription drug coverage, and low income assistance. The goal of this program is to help the beneficiary make well-informed decisions regarding their health care and get the most value for their health insurance dollars.

LifeStream is hosting virtual and drive-thru events to help those in need during Open Enrollment.

  • SHIP Question and Answer Virtual Session on November 12 from 9:00am to 10:00am and again from 6:00pm to 7:00pm. A SHIP Counselor will provide a short presentation with general information and will be available to answer general questions. No personal information will be discussed during the presentation. Join the 9:00am session at t or the 6pm session at
  • SHIP Drive-Thru Assistance on November 16 and November 30 from 11:00am to 1:00pm at the LifeStream offices in Pendleton, Richmond, and Yorktown. SHIP Counselors will be on hand to hand out information packets and help answer any questions. These events will practice safe social distancing measures to keep the community safe.
    • LifeStream Pendleton: 1 Plaza Dr. Suite 6 Pendleton, IN 46064
    • LifeStream Richmond: 423 Commerce Rd. Richmond, IN 47374
    • LifeStream Yorktown: 1701 Pilgrim Blvd. Yorktown, IN 47396

SHIP Counselors are also available via phone at 800-589-1121 to help answer questions and review current plans. This program is available to anyone in Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Franklin, Grant, Henry, Jay, Madison, Randolph, Rush, Union and Wayne counties. Visit or call 800-589-1121 to learn more.

LifeStream is an Area Agency on Aging that works to improve the quality of life for people at risk of losing their independence. LifeStream serves over 19,000 seniors and people with disabilities throughout 12 counties in Indiana including Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Franklin, Grant, Henry, Jay, Madison, Randolph, Rush, Union, and Wayne. Programs and services include care management, transportation, in-home care, Senior Cafes, home-delivered meals, guardianships, caregiver support, home modifications, information and assistance, volunteer opportunities and more. For more about the organization call (800) 589-1121 or visit online at and follow on Facebook at

IU East Announces 42nd Annual Whitewater Valley Art Competition Awards, Entrants

Posted November 2, 2020

The annual Whitewater Valley Art Competition awards was held on IU East Facebook Live on October 23.

Originating in 1978 with open judging, the event has hosted prestigious artists and art experts of national acclaim for the jurying.

This year, the WVAC was all virtual including the jurying on October 16 and the awards presentation.

Supplied Image: The first place entry to the 42nd Whitewater Art Competition went to Barbara Triscari of Lebanon, Indiana, for her fiber art quilt, La Chiesa di Bolzano Vicentino. Supplied Image:  The WVAC Chancellor's Purchase Award went to Shelby Alexander of Cincinnati, Ohio, for Not Your Ingénue, a mixed media piece made from graphite on paper, secondhand textiles.
The first place entry to the 42nd Whitewater Art Competition went to Barbara Triscari of Lebanon, Indiana, for her fiber art quilt, La Chiesa di Bolzano Vicentino. The 42nd WVAC exhibition is online now through December 31. The WVAC Chancellor's Purchase Award went to Shelby Alexander of Cincinnati, Ohio, for Not Your Ingénue, a mixed media piece made from graphite on paper, secondhand textiles.

Artwork was selected by this year's jurors Kevin Harris, art professor at Sinclair Community College; Sarojini Jha Johnson, professor of art at Ball State University; and Jae Won Lee, professor of art at Michigan State University. The jurors determined the award winners.

The 42nd Whitewater Valley Art exhibit is on display now through December 31 at

The exhibition includes 76 pieces from 59 artists across Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky, Ohio and Michigan.

The exhibition is presented by First Bank Richmond.

About the Jurors

Kevin Harris teaches at Sinclair Community College where he has led courses in Drawing, Printmaking and Digital Media since the year 2000. Prior to coming to Sinclair, Harris held teaching appointments at the University of Cincinnati, Northern Kentucky University, the Art Academy of Cincinnati, The University of the Arts, Moore College of Art and Design and Lincoln University.

Harris earned a B.A. from Hampton University and an M.F.A. from the University of Cincinnati. He has also studied at the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia and frequently attends printmaking workshops at Making Art Safely in New Mexico. His work is included in the collection of the Cincinnati Art Museum as well as in many corporate and private collections. He has recently been featured in solo exhibitions at the Dana L. Wiley Gallery, Dayton, Ohio, at the African American Visual Arts Guild (AAVAG) Gallery at Central State University-West, and at Sinclair's Triangle Gallery where he presented MULTIPLY, an exhibition of four thematically intertwined bodies of work: MULTIPLY, Angels Tread, Dream Sequence and Urban Wordfare plus The Sticker Snatcher Books.

Sarojini Jha Johnson has taught printmaking and foundations at Ball State University since 1985. She grew up in Ohio and earned undergraduate degrees in French and drawing from the University of Cincinnati. She received an M.F.A. in printmaking from Miami University where she began working with animal and plant forms in her prints. As a graduate student in 1983, her work was accepted into the 5th Annual Whitewater Valley Art Competition. IU East is thrilled to welcome Professor Johnson back 37 years later, this time as a juror.

Her work places natural forms in a fictional context. Her main medium is color intaglio printmaking, a medium that allows for great creativity and invention in terms of surface and color. She has been exploring memories and impressions of India, her country of origin. Animal images such as fish and birds still emerge in this work. Johnson also makes artist's books that present issues such as the effects of climate change on flora and fauna.

Jae Won Lee received a Bachelor of Fine Art degree in sculpture from California State University, Long Beach and a Master of Fine Art in ceramics from New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University. Lee is currently professor at Michigan State University and other institutes she taught at include Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Camberwell College of Arts in London, the UK, and Chung Nam National University, Deajeon, Korea, California State University, Long Beach, and the University of Washington, Seattle.

Lee makes intimate-scaled, reductive, sealed porcelain box forms, as well as porcelain sculpture shaped by numerous small multiple components of nuanced whites and off-whites and assembled into a large singular unit toward conveying the idea of white winter as a place to contemplate simplicity, silence, and solitude. Recently she has been exploring and applying this theme on works on paper and mixed media. She has exhibited in numerous national and international exhibitions. Recent solo exhibitions include: Tag Ends, Lim Lip Museum of Art, Gongju, Korea, Jae Won Lee In Situ, Blanche with In Situ Galerie, Nyon, Switzerland, and Myosotis, Gallery Lee & Bae, Busan, Korea.

IU East's 42nd Annual Whitewater Valley Art Competition Top Entrants

  • First Place ($2,000 award and a future solo exhibition at IU East)
    • Barbara Triscari, Lebanon, Indiana - La Chiesa di Bolzano Vicentino, fiber art quilt
  • Second Place ($1,000 award)
    • Chris Itsell, Johnstown, Ohio - The Fabric of Mortality, stainless steel and burl wood
  • Third Place ($500 award)
    • Al Harden, Cincinnati, Ohio - Inquisition, digital photography
  • Honorable Mention ($250 award)
    • Matthew Schellenberg, Farmington Hills, Michigan - Her Beauty Gained Her Everything She Had Ever Dreamt of..., wood (Cherry, Black Walnut, Ash, Cyprus and Goncalvo Alves) and steel
    • Danielle Rante, Dayton, Ohio - Tapestry, Cyanotype and colored pencil on paper
    • Austin Delano, Louisville, Kentucky - Factory to Table Fresh, wood (Poplar and Maple) and paint
    • Kathy Moore, Casstown, Ohio - Looking Down Upon Corner of Table Top, graphite pencil on rives
    • Yingqi Zhao, Lombard, Illinois - Mom, copper, brass, fine silver, vitreous enamel, and stainless steel
  • Chancellor's Purchase Award
    • Shelby Alexander, Cincinnati, Ohio - Not Your Ingénue, mixed media (graphite on paper and secondhand textiles)

2021 State Park Passes and Permits Now Available

Posted November 2, 2020

The 2021 Indiana state park passes, lake permits, off-road cycling permits, and horse tags are now available at property offices and front gates, and online at

A resident annual entrance pass costs $50. A non-resident annual entrance pass for visitors who live outside the state costs $70. Annual entrance passes are not valid for entrance to the Indiana State Museum, State Historic Sites, or Falls of the Ohio Interpretive Center.

Golden Hoosier Passports cost $25 and are available to all Hoosier residents 65 and older. There's also a Golden Hoosier Passport for disabled Hoosier veterans (DHV) who qualify to purchase a DHV license plate. To quality, the veteran must be 50% service-connected disabled as determined by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. Anyone who has been issued a Prisoner of War license plate may receive a passport for free. SSDI Golden Hoosier Passports may be used by an Indiana resident receiving or eligible to receive Social Security Disability Income under 42 U.S. code 423 as described by the Social Security Administration.

Lake permits are available for motorized watercraft for $25 and non-motorized watercraft for $5. These permits are required for all private watercraft using state park, reservoir, and state forest lakes, and all watercraft moored at marinas, private docks, or bank ties on those lakes. The 2020 lake permits also remain available for the rest of this year.

Off-road cycling permits are available for $20 and are required for each bicycle user for off-road bicycle access and use of DNR properties where off-road cycling is allowed. These permits are not an entrance permit and do not cover special user charges for services and facilities within the property. These permits are required only for trails identified as Intermediate, Advanced, and Expert. They are not required for trails identified as Beginner.

Horse tags cost $20 and are required for each horse brought to designated DNR properties where horse use is allowed. A horse tag is not an entrance permit and does not cover special user charges for services and facilities within the property. This year's 2020 horse tags and lake permits remain available to purchase for use for the rest of 2020.

None of the 2021 permits will be valid until Jan. 1, 2021.

State park annual permits are also available as part of Holiday Gift Packs. Gift packs also include a one-year subscription to Outdoor Indiana and a gift card for state park inns or campgrounds. Holiday gift packs are available for $100, or $150 for a higher gift card amount, at

Dramatic COVID-19 Spike Concerns Reid Health Officials

Posted November 2, 2020

Hospital reminds visitors about restrictions

Reid Health and regional health officials are "extremely concerned" about a "dramatic rise" in positive coronavirus cases, including a jump in hospitalizations that - if it continues - could quickly overwhelm bed capacity.

The number of hospitalized patients with confirmed or suspected COVID leaped to 61 as of Monday, which is only three below the highest number of 64 in late April/early May. "Other health systems in Indiana are already coping with this wave. Many of these patients are among our most vulnerable populations. This is extremely concerning," said Thomas Huth, M.D., Vice President of Medical Affairs at Reid Health. With an average of 30 admissions from the Emergency Department every day, Reid officials are gravely concerned the health system will have to curtail other necessary health services to provide capacity for an increasing caseload - as had to be done at the beginning of the pandemic.

"The proven precautions of social distancing and masking are vitally important right now," Dr. Huth said, noting that health officials believe "pandemic fatigue" has led to people growing lax or totally ignoring mandates designed to prevent a surge from reoccurring. Outbreaks in nursing homes in the area are a factor, he said, but outbreaks are also reported from community, family and church gatherings.

With many patients hospitalized because of outbreaks in long-term care facilities, Dr. Huth emphasized the importance of those who are at less risk still carefully following precautions. The people in these facilities were already isolated - so the virus had to be brought to them from likely younger, less at-risk workers or visitors. Some of these people were likely not as vigilant about masks, hand-washing and distancing. "Anyone, even those who aren't as at risk of severe illness, need to act as if they are to protect the more vulnerable, older population around them."

"The proven precautions of social distancing and masking are vitally important right now." -- Dr. Thomas Huth

Meanwhile, to protect patients and staff, Reid Health is tightening visitor restrictions immediately. The guidelines include:

  • Limit to one visitor per "non-COVID" inpatient per day - this is not "interchangeable," which means families are encouraged to have a designated person to fill this role and communicate electronically otherwise. Reid has iPads available to assist with this.
  • No visitors for COVID patients; technology will be used to promote interaction with family. Exceptions will be made for end-of-life and other select situations. Full details are available at
  • Limit to one visitor in Reid Health Physician Associates offices - no same-day re-entry.
  • Stringent enforcement of masking and social distancing for staff and visitors, including continuing to require visitors to mask at all times in public spaces and when not distancing in patient rooms.
  • Security checkpoints requiring legal I.D.

"We realize families want to see their loved one in person, but we also know the risks of COVID-19 to our patients, staff and their families. We appreciate everyone's cooperation with these guidelines to hopefully turn this trend downward in the face of this clear surge," Dr. Huth said.

Dr. Huth has tracked COVID-19 statistics since the pandemic began and also leads a bi-weekly call with health departments in eastern Indiana and western Ohio. Almost all counties in the region are marking an upward trend in positive COVID-19 cases. A major concern going forward is cooler weather keeping people indoors, "which means a higher likelihood of closer contact in less ventilated locations," Dr. Huth said.

Standard precautions of distancing and masking have been proven to work well, he said, despite numerous arguments and erroneous information about the effectiveness of the guidelines. He often shares an example from another state of a beauty salon where two employees worked a week while unknowingly positive with COVID-19. Because the salon was vigorous with masking of staff and clients, none of their customers caught the virus.

"Remember, masks are more effective when everyone wears them, but are especially helpful in keeping someone with the virus from passing it to others," Dr. Huth said. "At least 40 percent of the people who have the virus have no symptoms but can give it to others through their breath when they talk, cough, sneeze or simply breathe in and out. Wearing a mask helps keep this from happening." Dr. Huth continues to cite the double-risk of flu season combining with the pandemic, noting the flu vaccine this year is as important as it has ever been because it's possible to have both at the same time. The health system has already seen a case of someone with both flu and COVID-19, he noted. Some Reid Health primary care offices are offering curbside flu clinics for existing patients - others also offer the vaccine in visits. "I encourage everyone to check with their providers about getting their flu shot as soon as possible."

Following all the guidelines to prevent COVID-19 also can help reduce the spread of flu, he said. So masking, distancing and other measures along with a flu vaccine are the best way to protect the most at-risk populations. "Even if you're not at high risk of complications from COVID-19, take precautions anyway - you have other people in your life who are at high risk who could get the virus from you. So resolve to protect them by being careful yourself."

He said most positive cases can be traced to unprotected contact with someone else who was positive - often without knowing it.

Dr. Huth encourages everyone to follow the guidelines for masking and social distancing, and also:

  • Avoid going to places where the guidelines are not followed or enforced.
  • Get a flu shot.
  • Don't let up in practicing social distancing and masking.
  • Apply the guidelines to family gatherings and limit them in size.

"I'm personally not a fan of reinstituting lockdowns or shutdowns because of the drastic effects that produce their own serious human consequences," he said. "But if health systems become at risk from being overwhelmed as infections increase, these may be necessary. It's up to all of us to keep it that way by remaining vigilant with precautions."


Reid Health Cardiology, Oncology Services to Relocate in Connersville

Posted November 2, 2020

Reid Health's oncology and cardiology services in Connersville are relocating soon to the Reid Health - Connersville main campus at 1941 Virginia Ave.

Richmond Cardiology Associates' outreach in Connersville is moving from its State Road 44 location to the Reid Health - Connersville campus as of Nov. 2. Services now provided at 1475 East State Road 44 will be housed at 1941 Virginia Avenue in a space near the Atrium. The offices will also have new phone and fax numbers: (765) 827-7840, phone, (765) 827-7841, fax.

Reid Oncology Associates - Connersville will also move to 1941 Virginia Avenue a week later, as of Nov. 9. Numbers for oncology in Connersville will be (765) 827-8000 and (765) 827-7850 for fax.

Tyler Evans, MSN, RN, Cardiovascular Service Line Director for Reid Health, said the change provides opportunities for expanding access and increasing the number of physicians in the future. "We believe this consolidation of related services into one location makes the services more accessible and convenient for our Connersville area patients." The move also consolidates into one location outpatient and cardiopulmonary rehab services, he noted.

Amy Slonaker, MSN, RN, Director of RHPA Clinical Excellence/Oncology Services/Infectious Disease, said the Nov. 9 move of oncology services from Highway 44 to Reid Health - Connersville provides larger oncology space with opportunities to expand services and "enhances our ability to deliver quality care to our patients."

The two service lines will both benefit from ancillary services at the location such as lab, radiology and the Emergency Department.

Cardiology services have been available through Reid Health in Connersville for nearly 15 years. Oncology services were resumed in June of this year, Slonaker said, "in response to the greater need as well as our commitment to the Connersville community."

The Wayne County Convention and Tourism Bureau Announces Small Business Selfie Contest

Posted November 2, 2020

Supplied Flyer: 2020 Small Business Selfie Contest

The Wayne County Convention and Tourism Bureau invites the public to share their best "selfie" photo located at any area local business.

This contest is in support of Small Business Saturday occurring on Saturday, November 28th. Small Business Saturday is a movement to drive shoppers to local merchants in our area and support our community of locally owned businesses and restaurants. The goal of this contest is to work alongside the Small Business Saturday movement by having visitors and locals show their support for these small locally owned businesses while they visit the locations throughout Wayne County to take a selfie.

Contest begins November 1st and runs through November 30th, 2020. Photos can be submitted using hashtag #ShopSmallWC or directly to Visit Richmond's social media pages. Photo settings must be set to public, any private photos will not be accepted into the contest. A complete set of rules & contest details can be found at

The winning selfie will be selected based on creativity, uniqueness and the best display of small business support. Winner will receive a Fujifilm Instax camera, a $50 Chamber of Commerce Certificate and Wayne County gift bag valued at $200.

Reid Health Recognized for Excellence in Infant and Maternal Health

Posted November 2, 2020

Reid Health was recognized Wednesday by the Indiana Hospital Association (IHA), in partnership with Governor Eric J. Holcomb and State Health Commissioner Kris Box, M.D., FACOG, for its "commitment to infant and maternal health" at the first annual INspire Hospital of Distinction recognition program.

INspire, funded by the Indiana Department of Health's Safety PIN (Protecting Indiana's Newborns) grant, was developed to implement the delivery of best practice care for Hoosier moms and babies and recognize hospitals for excellence in addressing key drivers of infant and maternal health.

Reid Health earned the recognition based on implementing best practices in five key areas, including infant safe sleep, breastfeeding, tobacco prevention and cessation, perinatal substance use, and obstetric hemorrhage.

"Our team is passionately dedicated to healthy babies and mothers in our region," said Stephanie Field, Service Line Director for Women and Children's Services at Reid Health. "From voluntarily seeking out designation as a Baby-Friendly health system, to our educational and support programs for families during and after pregnancy, we are determined to continually seek excellence on behalf of our patients and their families to ensure best outcomes. "

Joseph Clemente, M.D., Reid OB-GYN, said "Reid Health Women's and Children's Services strives to integrate national best practices for our patients in our community. The Inspire award is a great recognition of the hard work and dedication all team members place in putting our patients first."

Gov. Holcomb said "Indiana's birthing hospitals are critical partners as we work to drive down infant mortality. Thanks to their efforts, Indiana's infant mortality rate has fallen to the lowest level in state recorded history. Together we will continue this important work to save even more lives and give every Hoosier newborn the best opportunity ahead."

"I am inspired by the work and passion our birthing hospitals bring to make sure all babies born in Indiana have the best start at life," Dr. Box said. "Reducing infant and maternal mortality requires a multi-pronged approach over the course of many years to see impactful change. We're seeing that change happen, but we can't stop now. We must continue to adopt best practices so we can celebrate more first birthdays in Indiana."

Box noted that among many successes, Indiana has seen a nearly 30 percent drop in Indiana's black infant mortality rate in just two years.

"Indiana hospitals are grateful for the leadership of Governor Holcomb and Dr. Box and are thrilled to be a partner in Indiana's successful effort to reduce infant mortality," said IHA President Brian Tabor. "We look forward to building on the progress we've made and achieving Governor Holcomb's goal for Indiana to have the lowest rate of infant mortality in the Midwest by 2024."

Indiana Hospital Association serves as the professional trade association for more than 170 acute care, critical access, behavioral health, and other specialized hospitals in Indiana.

Advance Practice Providers Trusted Members of Healthcare Team

Posted November 2, 2020

In light of a continuing national shortage of family practice and internal medicine physicians, "advance practice providers" (APPs) continue to grow in importance in ensuring enough providers are available to meet the growing demand for ongoing patient care.

"Advance practice providers, in collaboration with physicians, are able to expand patient access to care," says Cherie Frame, NP. As a Nurse Practitioner, she falls into the category herself. She also chairs the APP Committee at Reid Health, which recently recognized and celebrated APPs and their contributions to the healthcare system. APPs include nurse practitioners, physician assistants (PA), clinical nurse specialists (CNM), certified nurse midwives (CNM) and Doctors of Audiology (AuD).

APPs are licensed and board-certified in their specialties, making them able to manage acute and chronic illnesses. Having them as part of a team that includes a physician also helps reduce the high-stress demands on a smaller number of M.D.s and D.O.s. "The collaborative approach to care frees up more time for the physician to see patients who are more acutely ill," she said.

Rohit Bawa, M.D., Reid ENT and Chair of the Network Operations Council for Reid Health Physician Associates, said APPs help "fill the gap" created by the national shortage. He says more physicians are choosing specialty care, which also contributes to the increasing demand for family practice providers.

"Because many are choosing to specialize, this leaves few family and general medicine physicians," Dr. Bawa said. He also sees a positive side to the evolution of an increasing number of APPs. "As healthcare has advanced over the past decade, the concept of team-based care has become more prominent. Physicians, APPs, nurses, medical assistants and office staff work as a team with the patient at the center. Everyone is focused on the patient and providing the best care possible."

Frame sees advance practice providers as always being a vital part of healthcare delivery. "Some practices have more than one APP collaborating with a physician," she said. Some states with more extreme physician shortages also allow nurse practitioners to practice independently, though this is not the case in Indiana and Ohio.

For the Reid Health system, she said, "advance practice providers are trusted members of the physician-directed care delivery team."

State Higher Ed Commission Awards Over $83,000 to Local Organizations

Posted November 2, 2020

School and Community Partnership Grant supports college and career readiness for students

(INDIANAPOLIS) – The Indiana Commission for Higher Education has awarded 14 organizations with the 2020 School and Community Partnership Grant, designed bring together K-12 schools, postsecondary institutions, employers and community organizations to plan and implement supportive efforts for students of all ages completing education and training beyond high school.

"Community organizations across the state are dedicated to advancing the state's college and career readiness priorities – such as the 21st Century Scholars program – with the goal of equipping more Hoosiers with education and training beyond high school," said Indiana Commissioner for Higher Education Teresa Lubbers. "Each organization will make an impact in their local areas and we look forward to seeing the results of their efforts."

2020 School and Community Partnership Grant recipients:

  • Big Brothers Big Sisters Central Indiana
  • EDGE 21
  • Elevate Indy
  • Indiana Latino Institute
  • IndyAchieves
  • Knox Community Schools
  • Latino Education Group
  • Marian University
  • Northeastern Wayne School Corporation
  • Opening College Opportunities
  • Project Leadership (Delaware and Grant County)
  • Purdue Polytechnic-Anderson
  • Shakamak High School

The Commission awarded $83,567 to 13 local organizations including K-12 schools, postsecondary institutions, employers and community partners. Grant recipients will implement their suggested programs and events during the current school year.

The School and Community Partnership Grant is designed to support collaborative efforts of the state's college and career readiness priorities, including:

  1. Completing the 21st Century Scholars' Scholar Success Program and maintaining academic eligibility with at least a 2.5 grade point average;
  2. Family engagement programming, including enrollment in the 21st Century Scholars program and promotion of the state's Next Level Jobs program; and
  3. Pre-college and postsecondary professional development, focused on Indiana's college achievement gap.

Funding for the School and Community Partnership Grant is made possible through Indiana Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP). Led by a team of staff from Purdue University and the Commission, one of the primary goals of Indiana GEAR UP is to increase the number of students who are prepared to enter and succeed in postsecondary education.

For more information about the School and Community Partnership Grant, visit

HIP Extension Good News for Thousands in Reid Health Service Area

Posted November 2, 2020

Federal approval for extending the Healthy Indiana Plan (HIP) for ten years is great news for the up to 10,000 Reid Health patients who participate in the plan, Reid officials say.

"This coverage is critical, especially due to the increase number of current HIP consumers who lost jobs and previous benefits because of the COVID-19 pandemic," said Sharrie Harlin-Davis, Community Outreach Coordinator for Reid Health. Chris Knight, Reid Health Vice President/Chief Financial Officer, notes that HIP also now provides vision and dental options.

State numbers show that more than 572,000 Indiana residents have HIP coverage, with officials saying the number reflects an increase of about 100,000 believe related to the pandemic causing job loss.

"HIP provides a vitally important option for people who meet the guidelines to receive the coverage," Knight said. Patients with HIP represent an increasing percentage of Reid Health system consumers, he said.

The Healthy Indiana Plan is a health-insurance program for qualified adults. The plan is offered by the State of Indiana. It pays for medical costs for members and could even provide vision and dental coverage. It also rewards members for taking better care of their health. The plan covers Hoosiers ages 19 to 64 who meet specific income levels. See below if your 2020 income qualifies.

  • Individuals with annual incomes up to $17,829 may qualify.
  • Couples with annual incomes up to $24,078 may qualify.
  • A family of four with an annual income of $36,590 may qualify.​

Reid Health accepts all four HIP/Medicaid plans: Anthem, CareSource, Managed Health Services (MHS) and MDwise.

More information here:; or for information about HIP or other coverage programs, contact ClaimAid: (765) 983-3310.

LifeStream Receives Grant from the Arby's Foundation

Posted November 2, 2020

LifeStream Services was awarded two grants totaling $6,750 from The Arby's Foundation to support local youth. These funds were allocated by the Arby's Foundation from the twice yearly national Make a Difference fundraiser which raises funds through guest donations at local restaurants across the country.

In addition to serving older adults, LifeStream provides programs and services for people with disabilities of all ages. LifeSteam Services will be using the grant funds to purchase shelf stable meals for clients in Blackford, Delaware, Grant, Henry, Jay, Madison, and Randolph counties who are under the age of 18, and their families. Additionally, Second Harvest Food Bank of East Central Indiana is providing USDA food boxes to supplement the meals purchased with the Arby's Foundation grant. These funds will impact 80 households.

Arby's has been a support in more ways than one. On October 22, Arby's staff volunteered to give out food at the Senior Safety Net food distribution at the Delaware County Senior Center. The Senior Safety Net program helps provide supplemental nutrition for older adults who are in need.

"This generous grant from the Arby's Foundation will enable LifeStream Services to provide supplemental food and meals to our younger clients living with disabilities," explained Mandy Williams, VP of Programs at LifeStream Services. "These individuals and their families face unique challenges, and we are grateful to the Arby's Foundation for helping us serve vulnerable populations in our communities, both through this grant and with their ongoing volunteer support of our Senior Safety Net food distributions."

For more information on LifeStream's nutrition programs, please visit

About the Arby's Foundation:

The Arby's Foundation, the independent charitable arm of Arby's, helps America's kids dream big and pursue their dreams with confidence. Building on a philanthropic heritage that has contributed more than $90 million to youth-related causes since its inception in 1986, the Arby's Foundation is committed to helping kids build, expand and pursue their dreams as we focus our efforts in childhood hunger, youth leadership, and career readiness initiatives. The Arby's Foundation is part of the Inspire Brands Foundation, a registered 501(c)(3) organization headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia. For more information, visit

New HR & Talent Attraction Assistance Available to Indiana Small Businesses

Posted October 26, 2020

INDIANAPOLIS (Oct. 26, 2020) – Today, the Indiana Small Business Development Center (Indiana SBDC) announced new resources to provide employment support to Indiana small businesses and entrepreneurs. Through these initiatives, eligible companies may apply for no-cost assistance to help enhance their workplace policies or recruit and hire employees essential to the business' long-term growth and sustainability.

"With more than 521,000 companies employing 1.2 million Hoosiers, small businesses play a critical role in supporting Indiana's long-term economic growth," said Indiana Secretary of Commerce Jim Schellinger. "As a state, we're committed to expanding access to critical economic and workforce resources during these challenging times, while continuing to provide the support small businesses and entrepreneurs need to grow and succeed for years to come."

Human Resources Support

Through a new partnership with ServantHR, a Fishers-based human resources consulting firm, the Indiana SBDC assists small businesses in creating or updating workplace policies amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 Human Resource Assistance Program pairs eligible companies with trained human resources consultants to update their employee handbooks in order to accommodate remote working arrangements, administration of leave policies, sanitation procedures, and compliance with federal, state and local standards and regulations.

To be eligible, small businesses must meet the following criteria:

  • Be or become an Indiana SBDC client,
  • Have been in business as of February 15, 2020, and
  • Be able to demonstrate a negative impact from COVID-19.
  • Indiana companies are encouraged to submit applications online.

Recruiting & Hiring

Additionally, the Indiana SBDC recently launched an employment support program, HireUp, to help small businesses recruit, hire and onboard employees essential to the business' operations. Eligible companies partner with Quintegra, an Indianapolis-based talent connection firm, to identify qualified candidates, provide screening and background checks, facilitate interviews and establish an onboarding process to ensure continued success of the employee. Example positions include, but are not limited to, programmers, general managers, accountants, export development managers and licensed therapists.

To be eligible, small businesses must meet the following criteria:

  • Be or become an Indiana SBDC client,
  • Have the intent to hire within 30-60 days after entering the program,
  • Hire a full time, W-2 employee, and
  • Must not have previously participated in the program.

The Indiana SBDC, which is a program of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation (IEDC), provides small businesses and entrepreneurs with expert guidance and resources on how to start and grow a business, including strategy development, business planning and valuation, export assistance and market research. For more information on resources and programs for small businesses impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, visit To become a client of the Indiana SBDC, contact the regional office nearest you.

About Indiana SBDC

The Indiana Small Business Development Center (Indiana SBDC) is a program of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, which leads the state of Indiana's economic development efforts. The Indiana SBDC helps entrepreneurs launch, grow and locate businesses in the state, providing entrepreneurs with expert guidance and resources on how to start and grow a business. With a network of 10 regional offices through the state, the Indiana SBDC creates a positive and measurable impact on the formation, growth and sustainability of Indiana's small businesses.

The Indiana SBDC is funded, in part, through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, conclusions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA. For more information about the Indiana SBDC, visit

LifeStream to Host a Drive-Thru Event for Caregivers in November

Posted October 26, 2020

LifeStream Services invites caregivers to the Caregiver Drive-Thru Appreciation in celebration of National Caregiver Month in November. Caregivers can stop by to receive a loaf of pumpkin bread, hot cider, and resources to help in the caregiving process.

The drive-thru event will be on November 10 from 11am to noon at The Leland Legacy located at 900 S. A St. Richmond, IN 47374. There is no fee to attend this event and everything is complimentary in appreciation of caregivers. Social distancing safety measures will be in place.

LifeStream Services recognizes the importance of family caregivers and the sacrifices they make to keep their loved one safe and healthy. For more information regarding caregiver resources provided by LifeStream Services or Caregiver Curbside, please contact Angie Jenkins, Outreach Coordinator, at 765-759-1121 or More information at

LifeStream is an Area Agency on Aging that works to improve the quality of life for people at risk of losing their independence. LifeStream serves over 19,000 seniors and people with disabilities throughout 12 counties in Indiana including Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Franklin, Grant, Henry, Jay, Madison, Randolph, Rush, Union, and Wayne. Programs and services include care management, transportation, in-home care, Senior Cafes, home-delivered meals, guardianships, caregiver support, home modifications, information and assistance, volunteer opportunities and more. For more about the organization call (800) 589-1121 or visit online at and follow on Facebook at

LifeStream Services Offering New Caregiver Program

Posted October 26, 2020

Support for grandparents raising grandchildren and other adults providing kinship care.

LifeStream Services is now offering a new caregiver program for grandparents raising grandchildren and other adults providing kinship care. Parenting a Second Time Around (PASTA) is an educational and support group developed by the Cornell University Cooperative Extension.

PASTA will empower those who have moved into the parenting role for a second time to feel more confident, comfortable and informed. The program includes a series of seven workshops that can be done as an ongoing class, or as a standalone session. The workshops cover critical topics such as rebuilding families, child development, living with teens, legal issues, and more. Workshops can be done in-person or a virtual format.

There is no cost to schedule sessions for grandparents or other seniors providing kinship care. Organizations, community groups or companies interested in bringing the PASTA program to their community should contact Angie Jenkins, Outreach Coordinator, at 765-759-1121 or email Learn more about LifeStream's caregiver resources and events at

LifeStream is an Area Agency on Aging that works to improve the quality of life for people at risk of losing their independence. LifeStream serves over 19,000 seniors and people with disabilities throughout 12 counties in Indiana including Blackford, Delaware, Fayette, Franklin, Grant, Henry, Jay, Madison, Randolph, Rush, Union, and Wayne. Programs and services include care management, transportation, in-home care, Senior Cafes, home-delivered meals, guardianships, caregiver support, home modifications, information and assistance, volunteer opportunities and more. For more about the organization call (800) 589-1121 or visit online at and follow on Facebook at

IU East raises over $2,500 with "People of the Pack" campaign to support the student emergency fund

Posted October 26, 2020

Indiana University East surpassed its fundraising goal for the student emergency fund through the "People of the Pack: Get on Board the Cutout Campaign."

The campaign, held September 14-30, invited alumni, faculty, staff, students, parents of student-athletes, and community members to participate with a display of campus spirit by donating $50. Recognition of the gift included a cardboard cutout of participants - or of the person or pet of their choice - placed in a campus building.

Supplied Image (cropped): People of the Pack
IU East recently surpassed a fundraising goal with the "People of the Pack: Get on Board the Cutout Campaign." Benefits from the campaign go toward the IU East Marilyn Watkins Red Wolf Student Support Fund to provide emergency funding for students.

Paula Kay King, director of Gift Development, said the idea was to build campus morale for students while also raising funds for the student emergency fund, the IU East Marilyn Watkins Red Wolf Student Support Fund.

The Marilyn Watkins fund provides emergency support for students facing unforeseen financial hardships right now from food insecurity to unexpected medical expenses to limited access to technology.

"We are fortunate to have an emergency fund established to benefit students who may find they are suddenly in need of assistance," King said. "As a campus, we recognize that students and families are experiencing unexpected financial emergencies, loss of employment, or many other unexpected struggles during this unprecedented time. We are thankful for the many contributions provided by our Red Wolf family and friends of the university to help offer support for students when it is needed most."

More than 40 gifts from campus and community members helped to raise over $2,500 through the "People of the Pack" campaign.

Cutouts are on display in campus buildings now through November 20, ahead of Thanksgiving break. Once students leave campus for break, all courses will move to an all-online format as previously announced.

Jason Troutwine, vice chancellor for External Affairs, said the cutout campaign is a way to boost student and campus morale.

"While IU East is offering select courses on campus this fall, students are primarily taking courses online as part of the effort to make the campus as safe as possible during the ongoing pandemic. Additionally, many faculty and staff continue to work remotely," Troutwine said. "This has given the campus a very different atmosphere this fall. The cutouts are a way for us to be present and to offer encouragement or a friendly face for students as they are on campus."

Contributions to the IU East Marilyn Watkins Red Wolf Student Support Fund can be made online at by following these steps: Click on 'Give Now'. Click on 'Make a Gift'. Type 'Marilyn Watkins' in the search all funds area. Questions? Please contact Paula Kay King, director of Gift Development, at (765) 973-8331 or

Singles Interaction, Inc.

Posted October 26, 2020

Supplied Newsletter: Singles Interaction, Inc. November 2020

If you are 21 years of age or better and single, divorced, widow or widower, Singles' Interaction invites you to join them on Friday nights. Come to the Eagles Lodge, 75 South 12th Street, Richmond (membership not required) and meet other single people in the Richmond area.

Come, socialize, dance, and enjoy yourself!

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