Studying the Bard

April 14th, 2014

And since you know you cannot see yourself,

so well as by reflection, I, your glass,

will modestly discover to yourself,

that of yourself which you yet know not of.

~ William Shakespeare

A bedrock foundation of any literature curriculum is William Shakespeare, who is still considered the greatest English-language author even over 400 years after his birth (the date of which is not known, but generally celebrated on April 23 – also the date of his death).  Shakespeare plays a huge role in the IU East curriculum – and not just in ENG-L 315, Major Plays of Shakespeare.  His work touches literature courses including ENG-L 297, English Literature to 1600, ENG-L 225, Introduction to World Masterpieces, ENG-L 308, Elizabethan & Seventeenth-Century Drama, ENG-L 309, Elizabethan Poetry, and ENG-L 317, English Poetry of the Early Seventeenth Century.  If you take literature courses here, you are very likely to experience his work.

And although that work still resonates, parts of Shakespeare can be hard to understand.  While his plays added numerous now-common words to the English language (bedroom, critic, torture, hurry, scuffle, amazement, hobnob, gossip, swagger, zany, bump, rant – even academe), some of his phrases and allusions can be difficult for modern audiences to fully appreciate.  But fortunately there is a wealth of information on the Bard.  IU East subscribes to dedicated databases like The Shakespeare Collection and Editions and Adaptations of Shakespeare, as well as general ones like Early English Books Online, Humanities International Index, and Literature and Language.  And whole books have been dedicated to exploring every one of his plays, from Hamlet and Macbeth to Measure for Measure and Twelfth Night.

But since a play should be seen, we have videos of his works, including the BBC-Time/Life productions of 37 of them.  Experience comedies like All’s Well That Ends Well or The Merry Wives of Windsor, tragedies like Othello or Titus Andronicus, and histories like Richard II or Henry V, starring distinguished actors like Derek Jacobi, Patrick Stewart, Anthony Hopkins, Helen Mirren, Claire Bloom, Ben Kingsley, John Gielgud, Alan Rickman and even John Cleese.  Up to three DVDs can be checked out at a time, for three days each.

And if you want to experience Shakespeare in person, a great local opportunity is the Richmond Shakespeare Festival.  They’re holding a series of sonnet-writing workshops on April 19th, with sessions being taught by local Shakespeare experts including IU East professor TJ Rivard.  The RSF will perform both Romeo and Juliet and Much Ado About Nothing later this summer.  There’s also an open-house in the Starr Gennett Building in the Gorge at noon on April 23rd, the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s observed birthday.

‘There are more things in heaven and earth’ to learn about Shakespeare than you can dream of! Want to know more? Ask us!


Purple Up

April 7th, 2014

America honors and appreciates our veterans and their sacrifices, but at IU East this is especially so – we are routinely named one of the most military-friendly schools in the country, and as a member of the Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges (SOC) Consortium, we offer flexible Bachelors and Masters programs online to make it as easy as possible for mobile service-members to complete their degrees.  Right now, IU East proudly counts 262 veterans among our students.

military header

At the Campus Library we have resources to serve both research interests into the military and materials for veterans returning to the civilian world.  Examples are databases such as the Military and Government Collection and ProQuest Military, and the books Military Culture and Education: Current Intersections of Academic and Military Cultures by Douglas Higbee and Military Education Benefits for College: A Comprehensive Guide for Military Members, Veterans, and Their Dependents by David Renza.  Outside of the library, Dennis Hicks, a retired Navy warrant officer, advises the Student Veteran’s Organization, which helps vets achieve academic success, transition into civilian life, and meet any continuing military obligations.

April is the Month of the Military Child, and a time to focus on helping those whose parents are deployed far away.  April 15th, in particular, is Purple Up! Day.  Started a few years ago by New Hampshire Operation: Military Kids, the color purple represents a mixture of all the branch colors (green for the Army, red for the Marines, and blue for the Air Force and Navy).  Wearing purple shows support and solidarity with kids who are also making a kind of sacrifice for their country, by having their father or mother gone for long stretches of time.  There are a number of contests and events occurring statewide, so now is a great time to get involved, and show a military kid you care!

Any questions?  Send them to us at!


Poverty and Hunger

March 31st, 2014

Society has solved or improved a lot of problems.  Communication, transportation, and production have all seen meteoric improvement in the last century, which itself saw immense improvements over the century before.  Laws and changing social attitudes have reduced discrimination to a noteworthy injustice rather than simply the commonly accepted way of thinking.  We live in a world where, in most parts of it, people have relative security compared to what people experienced even a hundred years ago.  But one problem remains largely unchanged – poverty.

To be sure, there are less people in extreme poverty today.  Only about twenty percent of the world’s population is currently in extreme poverty, when it was twice that thirty years ago.  But for those who are under the absolute poverty line – those living on only a dollar or two a day – their condition is no better than it was five hundred years ago.  Destitution means a life without a sure source of food, clean water, and shelter, as well as poor health and deep vulnerability to violence.  And while extreme poverty is much more prevalent in third world countries, even developed nations grapple with it.

It’s an important topic to understand.  And the library has a lot of resources for that.  A database like Opposing Viewpoints in Context has a lot of information about the causes, consequences, and methods to fight poverty.  Try a search for Poverty or World Hunger to see hundreds of viewpoint articles, journal articles, statistics, and vetted websites.  Or, try a social issues database like SocIndex or ProQuest Social Sciences – this sample search will get you started.  And if you prefer books, we have titles like Hunger:
A Modern History
by James Vernon, Hunger and Poverty: Causes, Impacts and Eradication: Food Security: Quality Management, Issues and Economic Implications by Maddox Jones, Closing the Food Gap by Mark Winne, World Hunger edited by Claire Stanford (HC79.F3 W65 2007), Our Day to End Poverty: 24 Ways You Can Make a Difference by Shannon Daley-Harris, or Hunger: An Unnatural History by Sharman Russell.

But beyond understanding, it’s important to take action.  And our community is a great place to start!  Frances Moore Lappé started the work that would lead to her seminal book Diet for a Small Planet when she was a student at Earlham, right here in Richmond.  So never doubt that you can help, too.  On Sunday, April 6 at 3 pm, at West Richmond Friends Meeting (609 W. Main St.) there is an important meeting with Second Helpings to plan summer events. We hope to see you there! And please consider the other many local opportunities also, whether you can give time for one event or an on-going program. Any and all help is appreciated! To find out more, contact the IU East Center for Service-Learning or (765) 973-8411.


Kittens, puppies and free money

March 24th, 2014

Now that we have your attention….we’re here to offer you opportunities to connect campus and community for positive impact. Whether your schedule allows helping at a one-time event or an on-going commitment, the Center for Service-Learning has a match for you!

Just a few hours ….Help is needed almost every week! For details:

March 29 – Depot district projects, hosted by SGA

April 5th & 12th – adult literacy training (needs 1 hour/week commitment thereafter)

April 6 – Second Helpings – to help feed the hungry

April 12 – city-wide clean up (free food and t-shirt!)

May 3  – youth activities booth at the Amigos Dia del Nino (Children’s Day) at the Boys & Girls Club of Wayne County

May 10 – activities assistant at family earth day – Kuhlman Center, Richmond

May 17 – pet care games at Adopt-a-dog booth at Union County health & safety fair

Ongoing needs are posted here:

We partner with more than 30 local organizations. Contact Ann to find a good match for your interests and schedule!

Ready to lead a project? If you can commit to 30-50 hours per semester, apply NOW for a literacy coach award for Fall 2014. These awards provide $300-500 in funding as you work on community and civic engagement projects.  You will gain valuable experience in project management, leadership, and the reward of accomplishing something tangible to benefit our community.

Meet the Spring 2014 literacy coaches!


Jorge Perez-Orduno is a freshman considering business as a career but exploring options. Growing up as a non-English speaker during a point in time when a lot of the bilingual help that is available today did not exist proved to be a daunting task. Jorge recognized the value of college as these students helped him learn English. As a literacy coach Jorge will help translate documents, work with non-native English speaking students at Richmond High School and also help younger students.


Jeremy Eddy is a senior majoring in mathematics. As a literacy coach he is assisting in the planning of events which will expose others to both the Spanish language and Hispanic culture.  One of his primary projects is the ongoing development of the Campus Library’s literacy connection kits.  He is adding books and accompanying activities to these kits that are either written entirely in the Spanish language or which contain elements of the Spanish language and Hispanic culture.  He will also train service-learning students on how to best use these kits when working with ESL students or young readers.


Katelyn Brown is a sophomore biochemistry major with a Spanish minor. She has led a music program at Girls Inc and also volunteered with the Boys and Girls Club at Fairview elementary, working with children who live in households that speak Spanish. In addition, Katelyn has translated course content for Richmond High School students who are native Spanish speakers she developed creative activities for the Viva! Hispanic Culture Fair. As a literacy coach, Katelyn will focus on using her Spanish language skills to assist youth and families in our community and will also be a liaison for IU East Spanish students working on their service-learning hours.


Eva Thompson is a Junior elementary education major, with minors in Drug and Alcohol Counseling and Criminal Justice. She earned an Associate’s Degree in Surgical Technology as well as a Certificate in Phlebotomy and has experience working with both youth and adults.   Katelyn has a strong interest in working at a correctional facility and also being involved with adult literacy. As a literacy coach, Katelyn will complete the adult literacy training provided by the Wayne County Literacy Coalition and then serve as a trainer for other literacy tutors in addition to her own tutoring schedule.

Opportunities to serve are as varied as your talents and passions. Contact the Center for Service-Learning today and help create a better tomorrow.

Your Career

March 17th, 2014

With less than seventy days to graduation, many of you are probably thinking about the next step – and for a lot of you, that is how to get a job.  The earlier you start exploring your options, the better your chances of scoring the job you’ll love.  Fortunately, IU East has a lot of tools available to you to help you start right now.

In fact, there’s a whole department dedicated to your future success in the job search.  The Office of Career Planning and Placement helps students link to job listings, internships, and more that mesh with your major.  Additionally, they help you write résumés and prepare for interviews.  And if you decide to change careers later in life, they help you then, too.

career planning

But the whole university is focused on our students’ success; it’s part of our mission: IU focused on YOU.  So every department is interested in your future success.  Networking with faculty can get you the crucial connections in your chosen field.  Career programs and job fairs run here every year.  And the library is flush with resources to help you win a meaningful job, as well.

Our Career Connections LibGuide outlines every step of the job acquisition process, with helpful books, ebooks, videos, and websites.  From deciding on your career to résumé building to interview skills to worldwide or alternative careers to running your own business, there’s material to help you throughout the process.  And there are plenty of links to authoritative sources, such as the Occupational Outlook Handbook – perfect for gauging the compensation and working conditions of any potential career.

occupational outlook handbook2

With so many resources at your disposal, you’ll be equipped with a strong edge when you enter the job market!  Do you have any questions?  Don’t hesitate to ask us at!