O’Bannon Institute to culminate in conversation with Shiza Shahid, co-founder of Malala Fund

BLOOMINGTON – Ivy Tech Community College’s Bloomington campus is hosting its 12th annual O’Bannon Institute for Community Service on April 29-30 and May 1. On May 1, the three-day Institute, focused on the theme “Be the Change: Discover Your Super Power” will close with a conversation with Shiza Shahid, co-founder of the Malala Fund and Bob Zaltsberg, editor, The Herald-Times.

Shahid is an entrepreneur and social activist of Pakistani origin. She is the co-founder and global ambassador of the Malala Fund, the organization representing the young Pakistani activist who was shot by the Taliban for her campaign for girls’ education.

“Recently named one of TIME magazine’s ’30 Under 30 World Changers,’ we’re looking forward to Shiza’s engaging conversation about strengthening the global community through youth education, specifically for girls,” said Chancellor Vaughan. “As an open-access, comprehensive community college, we have a common goal with The Malala Fund– to change lives through the power of education, and to ensure access to it.”

The closing conversation with Shahid and Zaltsberg will take place after a day filled with an opening panel discussion focused on this year’s event theme, an Ivy Tech-Bloomington youth leadership presentation, a provided lunch, and related conference workshops.

Reservations are required for attendance to Friday Institute activities on Ivy Tech-Bloomington’s main campus, and admission is with canned goods or a monetary donation made at entry for Hoosier Hills Food Bank.

Tickets are still available for the O’Bannon Institute fundraising dinner on Thursday, April 30 with singer, songwriter, political activist, philanthropist, and author, Sir Bob Geldof, at the Bloomington Monroe County Convention Center on Thursday, April 30. Individual tickets are $100 and are tax deductible. Proceeds benefit the Ivy Tech-Bloomington Center for Civic Engagement.

To reserve seats for Friday’s Institute activities on Ivy Tech-Bloomington’s main campus, or to purchase tickets to Thursday’s fundraising dinner, log on http://obannon.ivytech.edu/tickets, contact Tina Phelps at (812) 330-6001, or email tphelps@ivytech.edu.

Event sponsors for the 12th annual O’Bannon Institute for Community Service include, Bloomington Economic Development Corporation, Bloomington Ford, Inc., City of Bloomington, CFC Properties, Cook Medical, The Herald-Times, Inc., IU Credit Union, Markey’s Rental and Staging, Sterling Real Estate, Inc., Smithville, and Linda and John Whikehart.

O’Bannon Institute for Community Service at Ivy Tech-Bloomington was established in 2004 as an annual opportunity for the community to come together to discuss issues of importance. Previous speakers of the Institute include U.S Senators, Pulitzer Prize-winning authors, Governors, political advisers and columnists, a presidential candidate, former first Lady of the United States Laura W. Bush, and former Secretary of State, General Colin Powell. The event has grown from a one-day event to a now three-day event that includes a civic engagement awards ceremony, a day of volunteering in the community, a fundraising dinner, panel discussion, workshops, and a closing conversation.

About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College (www.ivytech.edu) is the state’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system serving nearly 200,000 students 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.


Geldof Bio

Rising to fame thanks to his music career, which began with The Boomtown Rats in 1975, Sir Bob is known for the hit albums and singles he has recorded. He continues to be a prolific recording artist. During the 1984 famine in Ethiopia, he turned his attention to charity work, organizing Band Aid and the fundraising event Live Aid.  In light of his charity work, he received a knighthood in 1986. He has written a number of articles for publications including Time Magazine and completed a series for the BBC titled Geldof in Africa, during which he traveled through West, Central, and East Africa.

The Live 8 concerts, undertaken in 2005 and performed in the same spirit as Live Aid 20 years previously, were a huge global fundraising event, and cemented Geldof’s place as a tireless campaigner for global charities. Sir Bob continues his charity work today and on November 13, 2014, commemorating the 30th anniversary of Band Aid and to assist in suppressing the current Ebola crisis in West Africa, recreated the original song with the artists of today including One Direction, Alt-J, Elbow, and others.

He has received a number of awards, including the Nobel Man of Peace Award, several Honorary Doctorates, and received seven Nobel Peace Prize nominations.

Shahid Bio

Shahid_CAASpeakers_photoA graduate of Stanford University, Shiza was previously a business analyst at McKinsey & Company in the Middle East. She is now leading Malala Fund in its work to empower girls through education. Shiza was recently named one of TIME magazine’s “30 Under 30 World Changers” and to Forbes “30 Under 30″ list of social entrepreneurs.

Around the world, over 600 million adolescent girls are denied a formal education because of social, economic, legal and political factors. And in being denied an education, society loses one of its greatest and most powerful resources. The Malala Fund aims to change that. Education empowers girls to raise their voices, to unlock their potential, and to demand change. The Malala Fund’s solutions are grounded in inspired innovation: they are girl-centric approaches to education that support the Fund’s goal of creating a world where every girl reaches her true potential.

Shiza currently lives in New York City.

ACE Names Indiana Resident Jeffery Gearhart 2014 Student of the Year

Award to Be Presented at ACE Annual Meeting
Washington, DC (March 4, 2015)—Jeffery “L.J.” Gearhart II, a
McDonald’s restaurant general manager and student at Ivy Tech
Community College (IN) is the American Council on Education’s
(ACE) 2014 Student of the Year.

Gearhart, 24, of Bloomington, IN, will be presented with the
award at ACE’s 2015 Annual Meeting in Washington, DC, during
the Monday, March 16, morning plenary session.

The Student of the Year Award, formerly the Adult Learner of
the Year Award, is presented annually by ACE to an individual
who has benefited academically or professionally from the use
of ACE credit recommendations for workforce or military
training. Recipients must demonstrate outstanding achievements
in their community or workplace while successfully balancing
the demands of family, career and education.

“I am honored to work for a company that offers ACE credit
recommendations to assist me and other learners in obtaining
the college degrees and certifications that will help us
advance our personal and professional ambitions,” Gearhart
said. “My goal is to inspire others the way I have been
inspired by my mentors.”

ACE’s College Credit Recommendation Service (ACE CREDIT®) and
Military Evaluations are forms of credit for prior learning.
The programs evaluate employers’ workplace education and
training programs, or military courses and occupations, and
recommend academic credit when that learning is college level.

“Like so many nontraditional students, Jeffery successfully
balances the demands of family and professional
responsibilities even as he works to gain his degree,” said
Deborah Seymour, ACE’s assistant vice president for education
attainment and innovation. “His ability to inspire others to
also set high postsecondary achievement goals is another
example of how he exemplifies the qualities we seek in ACE’s
Student of the Year.”

Gearhart will receive a $500 scholarship to help continue his

Gearhart currently is a general manager of a McDonald’s
restaurant in Bloomington, IN, where he also teaches Shift
Management Excellence Courses at his and four other McDonald’s
restaurants in the area. He has successfully applied credits
from classes at McDonald’s Hamburger University to pursue an
Associate of Applied Science in Business Administration Degree
and a Human Resources Management Certificate from Ivy Tech.
Prior to receiving this award, he already had received a
Technical Certificate in Business Administration from Ivy Tech.

Ivy Tech recently partnered with McDonald’s in order to develop
a degree crosswalk with the company’s Management Development
Program. The partnership allows McDonald’s restaurant and mid-
management employees in the Management Development Program to
transfer up to 21 credit hours of courses taken at Hamburger
University toward an associate degree.

About ACE

Founded in 1918, ACE is the major coordinating body for all the
nation’s higher education institutions, representing more than
1,600 college and university presidents, and more than 200
related associations, nationwide. It provides leadership on key
higher education issues and influences public policy through
advocacy. For more information, please visit www.acenet.edu or
follow ACE on Twitter @ACEducation.

About Ivy Tech

Community College Ivy Tech Community College is the state’s
largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s
largest singly accredited statewide community college system
serving nearly 200,000 students 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

About McDonald’s

McDonald’s is the world’s leading global foodservice retailer
with over 36,000 locations serving approximately 69 million
customers in over 100 countries each day. More than 80% of
McDonald’s restaurants worldwide are owned and operated by
independent local business men and women.

Self-made man

After a fresh start, Chris Jackson makes his own way to a college degree

Growing up wasn’t easy for Chris Jackson. He lived in a rough neighborhood with his mother, who was raising him as a single parent. Priorities were different there, and going to college wasn’t in the picture.

“Gangs, drugs, and violence were the main things,” Jackson remembers. “I didn’t have very good role models. At one point, all of my uncles were in jail. Anyone who was going to school wasn’t respected.”

Nevertheless, he accepted a full scholarship to play football at a local junior college. He was the first member of his family to pursue a college degree and, unfortunately, his family was not supportive. This coupled with what Jackson calls a “lack of maturity” resulted in a bumpy year anchrisd a half of school that ultimately led to his dismissal.

“Once I got kicked out, I went back to my old neighborhood and married my high school sweetheart,” Jackson says. “We started a family together, and I was working as a cook at a restaurant. But after that didn’t work out, I decided I needed to get out.”

Jackson moved to Indianapolis for a fresh start. He continued working for the same restaurant company until 2001, when he traded in his chef’s hat for a construction helmet. Things were going well until the home building market soured and he was laid off.

“That was when I decided I deserved better – that I needed a real change in my life,” Jackson says. “College seemed like the next logical step.”

He talked about his options with close friends, and they agreed that Ivy Tech Community College was the right choice. Jackson’s goal was to earn credits for transfer, but once he got established in the engineering program, he realized the value in an Ivy Tech degree.

“The engineering program allowed me to utilize my talents and excel at the college level,” Jackson explains. “And the environment is incredibly supportive – so different from where I came from. The relationships I’ve built at Ivy Tech have inspired me to achieve more for myself.”

Now he’s a self-made man with an associate degree in electrical engineering. His plans for the future include continuing his education with a four-year degree in electrical engineering from either Purdue or IUPUI. He has also inspired his wife Donita to pursue a college degree. She is just one example of how Jackson serves as an advocate for the life changing power of continuing education.

“Graduation is the crowning achievement for me after all I’ve been through,” he says. “I will pass on the lessons I learned – that it’s important to continue your education – to family members who were brought up the same way I was. I want everyone in my family to know they can benefit from school.”