Bradley: Indiana State’s Partnerships Solve Problems, Enhance Health Care in Indiana

Indiana State University President Daniel J. Bradley explains ISU’s contribution in the context of statewide education.

  • Building on the Columbus and Richmond story of higher levels of collaboration featured in the current BizVoice, tell us how your institution fits in a statewide system of higher education with differentiated and complementary missions. 

Indiana State prides itself in the fact that our graduates not only have a solid well-rounded education but that they also have the skills needed to excel in the workplace. One of those skills is the ability to collaborate as part of a team. This is becoming increasingly more important in today’s society as a way to maximize the strengths of colleagues and partner organizations while working toward a shared vision, avoiding unnecessary duplication and solving complex problems.

In some areas the result is a new emphasis on intra- and inter-professional education. For example, Indiana State University has joined with the Indiana University School of Medicine, Union Hospital and its Richard G. Lugar Center for Rural Health, Ivy Tech Community College of the Wabash Valley, the Terre Haute Economic Development Corporation and the City of Terre Haute to form the Rural Health Innovation Collaborative (RHIC).

RHIC is designed to help address Indiana’s critical shortage of health care professionals, especially in rural areas. Through RHIC, future doctors, nurses, physical therapists, physician assistants, and other health care workers have opportunities to work together while being trained, thus better simulating the work environment they will experience after completing their degree programs. In addition to the synergy this arrangement will provide, resources for equipment, labs and instruction can be maximized.

The Collaborative extends beyond education to encompass economic development with the goal of attracting a range of health care companies and start-ups that will benefit from business incubator services available from Indiana State, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, and Ivy Tech.

RHIC will also address neighborhood development through the revitalization of a blighted area located between the campuses of Indiana State and Union Hospital. Housing development is planned to attract students, medical residents and retirees to a revitalized part of the Terre Haute community.

Achieving the vision of this innovative concept would not be possible without the active collaboration of the RHIC partners. RHIC illustrates how the whole can truly be greater than the sum of its parts.

This concept of intra- and inter-professional education is transferable to many other disciplines and is likely to become a catalyst for education reform.