Fort Wayne Athletics Raises Money for Scholarships

The IPFW split has resulted in a series of changes to its campus, one of the most notable being the rebranding of IPFW Athletics into Fort Wayne Athletics.

Fort Wayne Athletics held their third-annual Mastodon Run 4 Scholarships Sept. 10 at the IPFW Gates Sports Center to raise funds for its 14 NCAA Division I teams.

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One of the ways in which the event raised money was by offering raffle tickets.

JW Kieckhefer, assistant coach for Fort Wayne Men’s Volleyball, said that it is important to raise money for athletics scholarships, considering the national trend of rising tuition. Funding student athletes helps the teams stay competitive while costs increase little by little, he said.

As reported by Forbes, in the last two decades tuition costs have risen to double their starting amount. According to the US department of Education, by 2030, the annual cost of public tuition will average $44,047, putting the total cost for a four-year degree at over $205,000.

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Participants and event staff (mainly student athletes) stand for the national anthem.

“The teams that we are competing with in the Division I world,” said Kieckhefer. “They are all fully funded in the scholarship aspect, so if we want to keep competing at the highest level nationwide, nationally, we gotta make sure that we raise money and get the best student athletes we can in this institution.”

5k Map
Course map for the 5K Run/Walk at the Mastodon Run 4 Scholarships. Student athletes were spread around the course to cheer on the participants.

The event started at 2:30 p.m. between Rhinehart Music Center and Gates Athletics Center with opening remarks and the national anthem. Meanwhile, final sign-ups were being processed inside the Gates Fieldhouse.

The 2017 event consisted of four separate races within the IPFW campus. In past years there were only two main events: the 5K Run/Walk and the 1-Mile Family Walk.

Lisette Pierce, a Spanish teacher at Concordia High School and wife of the Fort Wayne baseball coach, has run the 5K Run/Walk every year since the event began. This year she decided to make the extra effort, Pierce said, branding a Wonder Woman costume under a Concordia T-shirt

“I was like, what can I do? So I just kind of put a superhero team, just to, kind of, pump people up to come out and run,” Pierce said. “I invited some friends, first of all, I invited my Concordia family, so I said, ‘Let’s go all out with Concordia.’ I also wanted the best dressed team award, so ‘Let’s go with superheroes.’ So I kind of combined superheroes with Concordia.”

This year, a 100-meter Kids Dash and 400-meter Kids Stomp were added, in order to make the event open for all ages.

The event was mainly staffed by student athletes, who manned the sign-up tables and did most of the setup and tear-down of the event. The students were also tasked with cheering on the participants of the events around the course of the races.

Lauren Hoffman, a senior majoring in psychology from Monroeville, plays volleyball for Fort Wayne Athletics. In her first time helping in the event, she said she was enthused to participate and help with the first events for children in the Mastodon Run 4 Scholarships.


Furthermore, Hoffman said she recognized the importance of the event as a way for Fort Wayne Athletics to stand on its own two feet.

“So this is kind of our way to be self-sufficient and funding ourselves and not having to worry about budget cuts in the future,” Hoffman said.

By the end, all runners won participation medals, in addition to awards for specific categories, such as best-dressed team.

Kirsten Crow, an IPFW mom who ran the 5K with her husband and her three dogs, praised the event after the awards.

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Kirsten Crow walked the 5K with her husband three dogs.

“It was beautiful, fun, everyone was very encouraging,” Crow said, “then they clapped and said good job, keep going… Nice weather, people are friendly. Definitely doing it next year.”

If you’d like to read a more detailed account of the event, click here.

IPFW Color Stomp Postponed

The Color Stomp was to take place on Tuesday, but has been postponed to a later, unknown date.

IPFW Intramural Sports and Student Life will host the Color Stomp sometime this semester, taking place near the IPFW baseball and softball fields.

It costs participants five dollars to run in the event. Runners will also receive a free t-shirt at check-in, complimentary dinner, and a color stomp towel. All the money from the run goes to Erin’s House for Grieving Children in Fort Wayne.

The run’s route will take place throughout campus with multiple “color stations”, where volunteers will blast the runners with a color-dye as they run through.

Andrew Kreager senator for IPSGA, who has sponsored the event in the past, said with budget cuts affecting their sponsorship of the event, they could not co-fund it this year.

“Student Life didn’t necessarily need us to help fund it this year,” Kreager said. “I know there was a conversation between Student Life and Student Government asking if they really needed our funding this year, and they said they had leftovers from years past that they could fund it with.”

Kreager said IPSGA will still be showing their support because it is a special event with proceeds going to a good cause.

Andrew Meyers, graduate assistant for Intramural Sports, said their biggest goal is to increase participant numbers.

Meyers said that with participant numbers going down in the past couple years, they plan on increasing the numbers through promotions on social media prior to the run.

According to Meyers, last year’s color stomp had approximately 50 participants. Meyers said if they see any increase at all, they will be satisfied. But, to put on the event, they desperately need people’s help.

“So right now, we really need volunteers,” Meyers said. “We’ve only had a few people contact us, and we need about thirty to forty people to help.”

Meyers said it’s important for volunteers and participants to come out because the run is a great way to get students to come together and interact in a positive way.

“I think that’s the biggest draw for me to help make it a good event,” Meyers said. “It gets the university some exposure and it just helps students have a better experience here at IPFW.”

Purdue Library Working Group to Propose New Plan to Provost

The Dean of Helmke Library will introduce to Purdue University’s provost a three-year plan-of-action of how IPFWs library will stand alone with its own catalog, policies and contract amid separating from Indiana University.

Helmke’s Dean Alexis Macklin said the split creates an opportunity for Purdue to construct a library system that is more personal for each campus’ needs, while also focusing on sharing among their individual library collections.

“We’re putting our efforts on other ways we could be working together to provide more resources, more efficiently,” Macklin said.

The meeting takes place on Oct. 17 in Macklin’s office, who is also head to the Purdue System Library Working Group. It comprises representatives from the Office of the Treasurer, the provost’s office, and from each Purdue campus: West Lafayette, Northwest, and soon to be Fort Wayne.

Macklin said the meeting will deliver a proposal of library systems and vendor contracts, how the campuses will share collections, and suggest working groups that look to improve the library system throughout the future.

According to the provost’s website, the new system will be running by July 1, 2018, which is also when IPFW will officially be Purdue Fort Wayne.

Macklin said IPFW could not sign the same contract as the West Lafayette and Northwest campuses because it is not solely affiliated with Purdue yet. Therefore, IPFW had to produce their own strategy for which library management system to commit to.

Also, Macklin said with West Lafayette’s interim library administration, it causes some difficulties because they may not want to make huge, system-wide decisions without a permanent team on board.

Macklin said these challenges give IPFW a chance to show how it can be independent so no student or faculty member on campus will feel pain from actions on the administration’s part

Overall, Macklin said the only differences in the library’s system will be how its pages look because it will not be from IUs vendors, but resources will remain the same.

“I’m confident that it’s going to be less hairy than what people were afraid it was going to be,” Macklin said.