- Associated Press - Monday, February 22, 2016

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) - A recent proposal advocating splitting the 13,000-student Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne campus into separate universities does not address the future management of the music department.

The Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne (https://bit.ly/1WCfk1g ) reports that under the proposal, Indiana University would keep control of the School of Medicine, and Purdue University would provide and control all other programs and course offerings. However, Purdue doesn’t offer a music degree, leaving the unit’s sisterly relationship with IU’s accomplished Jacobs School of Music in question.

When news broke about the proposal, music students panicked, said Shelby Fallis, a junior music-therapy student from Seymour. Students feared the music program might be dropped. However, Fallis said current students have been reassured that music will continue at IPFW and that they will receive an IU degree.

“I don’t think anybody could see that the music program was going away,” said John Sampson, president and CEO of the Northeast Indiana Regional Partnership. Sampson served on the group that made the recommendations “We didn’t talk about those programs at those levels. The music program has a great reputation (and there are) faculty, students and donors who have supported that at our campus.”

After the proposal’s release, donors and educators also were surprised that it was unclear which university would maintain the music school.

“Although I’m sure the Indiana General Assembly, IU and Purdue have put plenty of thought into the proposal, it doesn’t make much sense for the music department to be transferred to Purdue,” said Katherine Moenter, the grants director of the Auer Foundation. Auer Foundation is an IPFW donor, especially to its music program. “The Auer Foundation would like to see students continue to receive music degrees from IU.”

Although Purdue doesn’t offer a music degree, it still has music programs, said Purdue spokesman Brian Zink. He said the legislative body that crafted the proposal was tasked only with making recommendations about management. Zink said task forces will be formed to make recommendations about specific programs.

IPFW is now governed as part of the Purdue system as the result of a management agreement between the Board of Trustees of Purdue and the Board of Trustees of IU. But tension has grown over the years, leading the General Assembly last year to seek the report.


Information from: The Journal Gazette, https://www.journalgazette.net

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