This coming Friday afternoon, officials from Indiana University will join Gary city officials for the dedication of the newest structure on the IU Northwest campus -- the $45 million Arts & Sciences Building.
Spanning a full city block and rising up three stories, the impressive structure took two years to build and will be shared by IU Northwest and Ivy Tech Community College. Officials from both institutions say this cooperative approach has been hailed as one answer to increasing the number of college graduates in northwest Indiana and -- ultimately -- leading to more jobs that require college degrees, offer higher pay and spur economic development.
We devoted a large segment of Tuesday's "Regionally Speaking" program to the new Arts & Sciences Building, with remarks and several different viewpoints. From the academic site, we talked with Professor Bonnie Neff, the chair of the Departments of Communication, Fine Arts and Performing Arts. IU Northwest students will take their classes in mass communication and other disciplines in the building and the University's online radio station and cable television facility are also located in the new building. Professor Neff also talks about the state-of-the-art classrooms to be available to both IU Northwest and Ivy Tech Community College. An art gallery, 500-seat professional mainstage theater, and 100-seat black box studio theater will also be available for students and the community to enjoy.
IU Northwest economist Micah Pollak talks about the impact the new Arts & Sciences Building will have on northwest Indiana economic growth as well as th Region's quality of life. And Bo Kemp, the executive director of Gary Economic Development Corp., talks about the impact that the new I.U. Northwest - Ivy Tech Community College facility will have on the Steel City's image and economic well-being, as an anchor for the University Park East Neighborhood and its development plan.
Here is the entire conversation as aired on "Regionally Speaking" on Tuesday.