Students, faculty, staff and guests packed the Louise E. Addicott and Yatish J. Joshi Performance Hall for the dedication ceremony of the Vera Z. Dwyer College of Health Sciences. The program featured remarks by Indiana University Executive Vice President for University Academic Affairs John Applegate, IU South Bend Chancellor Terry L. Allison and others.
Dwyer scholarship recipient Rachel Cole gave an emotional address as she thanked those who have helped her overcome many obstacles in her quest to become a nurse. A beautiful portrait of Vera Dwyer painted by IU South Bend faculty member Ron Monsma was unveiled and keys to the College were given to officially recognize the naming.
In December, a $5.85 million gift from the Vera Z. Dwyer Charitable Trust was given to IU South Bend in support of the College of Health Sciences. In recognition of the gift, the College of Health Sciences at IU South Bend will be named the Vera Z. Dwyer College of Health Sciences.
The gift includes $2.5 million to be used to increase the endowment of the Vera Z. Dwyer Scholarship in Healthcare; $1.5 million to create and endow the Dwyer Distinguished Chair in Advanced Nursing Practice; $1 million in a guaranteed matching pledge for the Health and Wellness Center at IU South Bend to expand low-cost healthcare services to the community; and $850,000 to be used to begin implementation of these initiatives. When combined with the earlier gift of $1 million that established the Dwyer Scholarship in Healthcare, the combined gift reaches a total of $6.85 million. If the matching pledge is realized, the total results of the gift would be $7.85 million.
The Vera Z. Dwyer Charitable Trust is managed by Indiana Trust and Investment Management Company of Mishawaka and represents the legacy of Vera and her husband James Dwyer who founded Dwyer Instruments in 1931 with his brother F.W. Dwyer. Their first product was a fluid-filled inclined manometer that was used as a draft gauge in furnaces and boilers. The company moved to Michigan City in 1955 and its headquarters remain there today. In recognition of the Dwyer family ties to Michigan City, 20 percent of the total scholarship funds of the Vera Z. Dwyer Scholarship in Healthcare are reserved for students from La Porte County. Dwyer Instruments continues to be a leading manufacturer in the controls and instrumentation industry.
The naming was approved by the Indiana University Board of Trustees on December 5. Charitable gifts to Indiana University are held and managed by the IU Foundation in Bloomington, Indiana.
The endowed Vera Z. Dwyer Scholarship in Healthcare will generate funding to provide scholarships that will attract and support highly qualified students interested in the health sciences, especially low income, under-represented and first generation students. The gift is expected to support approximately 60 students with financial need annually.
The endowed Vera Z. Dwyer Distinguished Chair in Advanced Nursing Practice will bring an expert in the field to the School of Nursing program at IU South Bend as a faculty member. This position will elevate teaching, learning and community service in healthcare at IU South Bend and will position graduates to be at the forefront of innovation in the nursing profession.
The Vera Z. Dwyer College of Health Sciences at IU South Bend includes the School of Nursing, the Dental Education/Dental Hygiene program, the Radiography program, and operation of the Health and Wellness Center on campus. More healthcare degree programs are planned as part of the Academic Master Plan at IU South Bend.