PNC Hosts “An Outsider Looks In” Painting, Sculpture Exhibit

Tom_Olesker1Purdue University North Central Odyssey Arts and Cultural Events Series is presenting the exhibit, “An Outsider Looks In,” by Thomas Olesker, a collection of mixed-media paintings and sculpture that will be on display through May in the PNC Library-Student-Faulty Building student lounge, Room 062. Building hours are Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Saturday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Library-Student-Faculty Building is closed on Sundays.

Olesker’s work of the past 40 years has been inspired by both the ancient and contemporary life of Mexico.  His use of applied materials – wood, string, paper and even toys – gives his work dimension and translates the materials into both a tactile and visual experience. Olesker was born and raised in Chicago and now lives in Mexico.

“The glorious thing about creating art in this wonderful country is that the inspiration can come from a shard of 1,000-year-old Hohokam pottery or from the old caballero selling mangos on the street yesterday,” explained Olesker. “The importance of the spirit-life imagery in Mexico’s artistic heritage has supplied me and countless other artists with enough inspiration for the next 1,000 years. I am fascinated with other cultures, especially the Huichol indigenous people of the Sierra Madre Mountains in Mexico and the Mata Ortiz area near the Arizona/Mexico border. Looking at the images they use for sacred ceremonies and everyday life is an inspiration to me. They revere the natural world in all of its glory.”

Olesker’s work has been featured in shows at the Lubeznik Lakefront Fair, Michigan City; Outsiders Outside, Judith Racht Gallery, in Harbert, Mich.; Exhibiting Artist Galleria Uno, in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico and Exhibiting Artist Galleria Dante, in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

His commissioned art appears in private collections in Mexico, California, Oregon and Illinois.

To obtain further information about this exhibit or the Odyssey Arts and Cultural Events Series, contact Judy Jacobi, PNC assistant vice chancellor of Marketing and Campus Relations, at 219-785-5593. Persons with disabilities requiring accommodations should contact Jacobi.

PNC Offers Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

Westville – Purdue University North Central now offers electric vehicle charging stations on campus.

There are two duplex unit charging stations conveniently located in front of Schwarz Hall just north of Central Drive. The stations will be capable of charging up to four vehicles simultaneously and will be available every day at any time without fee to anyone needing the service.

The changing stations were made possible through assistance from a variety of funding sources. PNC began the process of acquiring charging stations in July 2012 with federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality, CMAQ Improvement Program and NIPSCO grant applications. The stations became a reality with combined assistance from South Shore Clean Cities, Indiana Department of Administration, INDOT, NIPSCO and the Northwest Indiana Regional Planning Commission (NIRPC).

Through the grants, NIPSCO provided the charging stations and INDOT made federal funds available to assist with 80 percent of the installation costs.

For directions to PNC as well as a map of the Purdue North Central campus, visit



PNW Chancellor Finalists


August 21, 2015

PNW Chancellor Finalists to Make Presentations

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Four finalists for Purdue University Northwest chancellor will be on the Purdue Calumet and Purdue North Central campuses for two-day interviews over the next few weeks. Finalists will meet with various groups on both campuses and will make a public presentation at each campus.

Gary Lehman, Purdue trustee and head of the search committee, said each finalist will make a 30-minute public presentation and take audience questions. The presentations will be livestreamed and archived for those who are unable to attend the presentation in person.

The new chancellor will oversee the integration of Purdue Calumet and Purdue North Central and be the first chief executive officer of Purdue University Northwest, which will officially come into existence on July 1, 2016, pending approval by the Higher Learning Commission. The chancellor will be responsible for working with stakeholders from the two existing campuses to form a new set of shared values and priorities as well as to advance academic quality, student success and affordability. The chancellor also will be charged with meeting with local employers and community leaders to ensure that the new institution is meeting the needs of the regional economy.

Finalists and their presentation times are below (all times are Central time, local to Purdue Calumet and Purdue North Central). The livestream link, archived presentation and each candidate’s full curriculum vitae will be made available from Feedback on the candidates is requested and an online tool also will be provided on the candidate website.

* Michael Stevenson, most recently the senior fellow for academic affairs for the University of Maine system, also has served as provost and vice president for academic affairs at the University of Southern Maine and dean of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Northern Arizona University, in addition to time at Miami University, Ball State University and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

Stevenson’s presentations:
2:00 p.m. August 31 in Alumni Hall SUL 360, at Purdue Calumet
1:15 p.m. September 1 in LSF 002, at Purdue North Central

* Ron Brown is associate vice chancellor for academic affairs in the University of North Texas system, where he previously served as president of the University of North Texas at Dallas. Brown also has served at Temple University, the Medical University School of South Carolina, the University of Houston and the University of Illinois. Brown is a fellow of the American Psychological Association and the American Psychological Society and president of the Society of Pediatric Psychology.

Brown’s presentations:
2:00 p.m. September 10 in LSF 002, at Purdue North Central
1:15 p.m. September 11 in Gyte 103, at Purdue Calumet

* Stephen Kolison is associate vice president for academic, faculty and global programs for the University of Wisconsin system, where he also has served as acting senior vice president for academic affairs. In addition, Kolison was founding dean and research director for the Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Research at Tennessee State University. He also served at Tuskegee University and Iowa State University. He is affiliated with the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management and EDUCAUSE.

Kolison’s presentations:
2:00 p.m. September 14 in Alumni Hall SUL 360, at Purdue Calumet
1:15 p.m. September 15 in LSF 002, at Purdue North Central

* Thomas Keon is currently chancellor at Purdue Calumet, where he has served since 2011. He was previously dean of the College of Business Administration at the University of Central Florida, dean of the College of Business and Administration at Southern Illinois University Carbondale, and associate dean of the College of Business at Florida Atlantic University. Keon is affiliated with the American Council on Education, the Council for Advancement and Support of Education, and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities.

Keon’s presentations:
2:00 p.m. September 16 in LSF 002, at Purdue North Central
1:15 p.m. September 17 in Alumni Hall SUL 360, at Purdue Calumet


PNC Panthers and Lakers Baseball Teams Community Event

baseball camp

Members of the PNC baseball team help youngsters from the Porter County Boy and Girls Club Day Camp learn the fundamentals of baserunning.

The Purdue University North Central Panthers baseball team and Michigan City Lakers summer baseball team joined forces to provide a day of fun and learning for a group of 40 youngsters from the Porter County Boy and Girls Club Day Camp.

The group of players from the two teams took time out of their summer break to teach the children, ranging in age from 6-11 years old, the basic fundamentals of baseball.

The children enjoyed a day at Hicks Field on the PNC campus learning skills including proper stretching, hitting, throwing, base-running and infield and outfield defense. The Boys and Girls Club members earned some souvenirs as winners of contests.

“The camp also provided an opportunity for the Panther and Laker players to pass on their knowledge and love of the game to the youngsters to hopefully inspire them to follow in their footsteps, said PNC baseball coach Shane Prance, who also pitches for the Lakers. “It also put things into perspective for the players and made them think back to when they were just kids growing up playing baseball for fun.”

Andy Kovarik, a Crystal Lake, Ill., native who will be a senior for the Panthers this season and also plays for the Lakers, was one of the many players who spent the day to teaching the youngsters.

“It was great to feel like I made an impact on the kids teaching them a sport that I love to play,”  Kovarik said, “I think they had a lot of fun, learned a lot and saw that as they practiced more, the better and better they got.  It was a great experience and I had a lot of fun myself.”

“Both teams value the opportunity to give back to the community and doing it through baseball was a win-win for both programs,” said Prance.

PNC Construction Club, Powers & Sons Contribute to Habitat for Humanity ReStore

construction club members

Jeremy Booker (left) and Robert Kennedy, Purdue University North Central Construction Engineering Management Technology majors and members of the Powers & Sons Construction Company team, unload windows that Powers & Sons recently donated to the Habitat for Humanity ReStores. (Photo by Cassie Carlson, Powers & Sons)

Contributed by: Cassie Carlson, Marketing Coordinator, Powers & Son

Members of the Purdue University North Central Construction Club and Powers & Sons Construction Company, of Northwest Indiana, recently worked together to collect and transport unused, spare materials from a completed Powers & Sons project to the Gary and Michigan City Habitat for Humanity ReStores.

PNC Construction Club members Robert Kennedy and Jeremy Booker, are both PNC Construction Engineering Management Technology majors who recently joined the Powers & Sons team. Kennedy approached Powers & Sons to suggest the donation.

As president of the PNC Construction Club, Kennedy has worked behind the scenes to solidify a relationship between the Construction Club and Habitat for Humanity. Construction Club members have volunteered with Habit for Humanity projects throughout Northwest Indiana through the years and Kennedy knew that club members would welcome the opportunity to work with Powers & Sons to facilitate this donation.

Therefore, he asked if Powers & Sons would be willing to donate some surplus materials to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore so that the new and unused materials could be put to use to benefit Habitat for Humanity and the communities it serves. Powers & Sons agreed to donate 30 large windows, 20 small windows and eight cabinets that were divided for use between the Gary and Michigan City Habitat for Humanity Restores.

“This was a tremendous combined effort,” said Kennedy, who was hired in January at Powers & Sons as a project engineer and is currently assigned as field project manager for a $4.8 million addition at an elementary school in Chicago. “This was a very generous donation from Powers & Sons and the Construction Club members were happy to help get the materials to Habitat for Humanity.”

Powers & Sons brought the materials from a job site in Chicago to its offices in Gary. The Construction Club rented a truck that it used to make the deliveries to the Habitat for Humanity sites. Kennedy, Booker and Derrick Cotten, a Construction Engineering Management Technology at Purdue University Calumet and Powers & Sons project engineer, all volunteered to help. PNC Construction Club faculty advisor Martha Garcia-Saenz, associate professor of Construction Engineering and Management Technology, and her husband Ivan Saenz, drove the rental truck and helped load and unload the truck as well.

The Habitat for Humanity ReStores are non-profit home improvement stores and donation centers that sell new and gently used furniture, home goods, building materials and appliances at a fraction of the retail price. This greatly helps local Habitat for Humanity affiliates fund the construction, rehabilitation or repair of affordable homes within the communities they serve.

The materials donated from Powers & Sons will be used to further Habitat for Humanity’s mission of building homes, communities and hope.

“Powers & Sons Construction Company is honored to continue support for Habitat for Humanity and the ReStore facilities, “ said Mamon Powers Jr., CEO and chairman of the board. “Powers & Sons and Purdue North Central Construction Club are eager to continue serving this distinguished non-profit organization.”

STEAM Summer Camp @ PNC, 2015

steam summer camp class

Charles A. Steele, PNC and Purdue Calumet limited term lecturer in Physics and president of Aneval Inc., shows youngsters attending the PNC STEAM Summer Camp how to weigh and measure materials gathered from their “crime scene.” The young people encountered a staged crime scene and learned how to gather evidence, analyze it and use that information to help them solve the crime.

Purdue University North Central has wrapped up its six-week STEAM Summer Camp @ PNC, 2015. The camp was intended to introduce youngsters ages six to 12 to activities in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics (STEAM) and introduce them to the university campus.

Participants were enrolled in one of the La Porte County Coalition of Youth Serving Agencies (YSA) of Michigan City including Imagination Station, Barker Woods, Boys and Girls Club, Michigan City Parks and Recreation, Safe Harbor and North Central Community Action Agencies (NCCAA). The camp was made possible through the sponsorship of the 21st Century Community Learning Centers grant and the NIPSCO Community Investment Grant.

PNC faculty, staff and local professionals offered in age-appropriate learning that included Indoor and outdoor activities that kept the youth mentally and physically engaged for their time on campus.

About 40 students came to camp each day and up to 200 children spent one morning a week at PNC during the six-week camp.

The camp learning activities included:

“The Concept of Matter” led by Debra Pratt, PNC continuing lecturer of education.

“Art and Math” with noted artist Michelle Wiser.

“Pollination and Pollinators” presented by the Potawatomi Audubon Society.

“Science is Everywhere!” with Dr. Aaron Warren, PNC associate professor of Physics.

“Geology Rocks: Dig into our ever-changing Earth!” presented by Stephanie Irk.

“Who Done It? A Crime Lab” with Charles A. Steele, PNC and Purdue Calumet Limited Term Lecturer in Physics and president of Aneval Inc.

PNC Alumni Organizing United Way Day of Caring Teams

The Purdue North Central Alumni Association is seeking volunteers to participate in an alumni team taking part in the United Way Day of Caring on Friday, Aug. 21.

The Day of Caring will bring together teams of individuals representing businesses, municipalities, churches and civic groups to volunteer to work on a variety of projects that will benefit a number of local nonprofit agencies.

A PNC alumni team has registered to work on the “All Hands on Deck” project at the Valparaiso Family YMCA. Volunteers there will work on cleaning the pool area, pool deck, walls, stainless steel accessories. Volunteers should wear shoes, socks and clothes they do not mind ruining. Volunteers should note that it is warm on the pool deck. This is a morning event from 9 a.m. to noon.

“The Valparaiso Family Y is so appreciative of the commitment from the PNC Alumni to help us with the Day of Caring,” said Robert Wanek, Valparaiso YMCA CEO. “This is a big week for us where we shut down the Y for deep cleaning and repairs, and the pool area is always a major focus where additional hands are a blessing!!”

To volunteer to be a part of the PNC alumni team contact Erika Jones, PNC alumni coordinator, at 219-785-5274 or

PNC alumni are welcome to get together additional teams to help out at other Day of Caring events. A full list of volunteer opportunities is available at

“Volunteering to be a part of the United Way of Caring is a tremendous way for PNC alumni to give back to the local communities where they work and live,” said PNC Chancellor Dr. James B. Dworkin. “The vast majority of our alumni grew up in this area and have deep roots in Northwest Indiana. This is a wonderful opportunity for all of us to get together to do what we can to benefit our friends, neighbors and co-workers. I encourage our alumni to sign up for a project that suits their interests. You will be glad you did.”

When registering through be sure to include all teammate names, emails and preferred shirt sizes. Free Day of Caring t-shirts will be given to volunteers, but sizes cannot be guaranteed.

Full details on the Day of Caring can be obtained at

For more information about the PNC Alumni Association Day of Caring activities contact Jones at 219-785-5274 or

Purdue North Central Accepting MBA Registrations

Purdue University North Central is accepting registrations from students interested in earning a Master of Business Administration degree. Classes will begin Sept. 12. Deadline for admission is Aug. 14.

Students, regardless of their baccalaureate field, will be able to complete their degrees in less than two years. Prospective students still have time to begin the admissions process. A limited number of class spaces remain.

The Master of Business Administration degree has become the recognized credential for leaders throughout business and industry. The MBA program prepares students from all backgrounds with the knowledge and skills they will need to assume leadership positions in a variety of organizational settings.

The PNC MBA class schedule is designed to meet the needs of working adults, with classes conveniently offered on Saturdays at PNC – Porter County, at 600 Vale Park Road in Valparaiso. MBA students will utilize state-of-the-art educational and business technology and have full access to the University libraries, online resources, computer systems and other forms of academic support. All faculty members are certified by the Graduate School in West Lafayette and are supported by the full teaching resources of Purdue University.

To obtain further information, contact Jaclyn Barnhill, MBA Coordinator at 219-785-5557 or Persons with disabilities requiring accommodations should contact the program office.

PNC SHRM Student Chapter Receives Merit Award

The Purdue University North Central student chapter of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) has been awarded a 2014-2015 Student Chapter Merit Award designation from the Society for Human Resource Management for providing exceptional growth and development opportunities to its student chapter members.

SHRM is the world’s largest association devoted to human resource management. Representing more than 275,000 professional and 20,000 student members in over 160 countries, the association serves the needs of HR professionals and advances the interests of the HR profession.

Through its monthly meetings, activities and presentations, the PNC SHRM chapter has provided skills and professional development opportunities for its members.  Recent activities have included a professional resume writing skills workshop, business etiquette and networking session, and the do’s and don’ts of academic presentations. The PNC SHRM Chapter Advisor is Dr. Anne Christo-Baker, PNC associate professor of Organizational Behavior and Leadership.

Chapter members also participate in Northwest Indiana SHRM and National SHRM programs, which keep them informed of new human resource regulations, trends, issues and challenges. The group’s volunteering and community activities promote character development. Membership in the chapter grew from six to eighteen members during the award year and continues to grow.

“SHRM is pleased that the Purdue North Central student chapter is among our 2014-2015 Merit Award winners. Our student chapters, led by an inspiring and dedicated group of student volunteers and chapter advisors, truly represent the future of the HR profession,” said Susan Post, divisional director, East and the lead for SHRM’s Student Programs. “Their achievements, which go above and beyond their everyday academic and work commitments, are commendable. We applaud the positive impact their efforts have on their schools, the community and beyond. The future of HR shines bright knowing these students are among those leading the way.”

Chapters have the opportunity to earn an award based on the number of activities they complete during the merit award cycle, which ran from April 1, 2014, to March 31, 2015.

The SHRM student chapter merit award program, which began in 1972, exists to encourage development of more effective student chapters and to promote outstanding activities and projects by student chapters in the following areas: student chapter requirements, chapter operations, chapter programming and professional development of members, support of the human resource profession and SHRM engagement.

For more information, contact Christo-Baker at 219-785-5643 or

Visclosky Announces Grant to Purdue University North Central

Congressman Pete Visclosky announced that the United States Department of Education has awarded a $289,901 grant to Purdue University North Central.

“I congratulate Chancellor Dworkin and the entire Purdue University faculty and staff for ensuring that students have access to the resources they need in order to succeed,” said Congressman Pete Visclosky.

The grant was awarded under the Department of Education’s Student Support Services Program. The Student Support Services Program (SSS) provides academic and other support services to low-income students, first generation students, or students with disabilities.  The purpose of the program is to increase student retention and graduation rates, facilitate their transfer from two-year to four-year colleges, and foster an institutional climate supportive of their success.

“PNC has been a part of the TRIO program since the 1980s and has served thousands of students,” said Purdue University North Central Chancellor Dr. James B. Dworkin.  “With TRIO, age, gender, race, income and capabilities are not an issue.  Rather, the focus is on learning, sharing ideas, opening doors and broadening interests.  Thanks to TRIO, PNC students have received vital services that have helped them flourish academically and socially and provided them with skills to ensure success beyond their days at PNC.  TRIO has had an immeasurable impact on their lives.  These talented, accomplished students have gone on to have successful careers in our communities.”

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