The Journal Gazette
Monday, January 03, 2022 1:00 am

Grace pairs aspiring teachers, students

ASHLEY SLOBODA | The Journal Gazette

Through a new program called Grace Men of Ed, aspiring male teachers this month will be paired with Warsaw Community Schools students in need of a positive role model, Grace College said.

Specifically, the program will help boys at Jefferson Elementary School. Principal Josh Wall said it has already generated excitement.

“We can never overestimate the impact a positive role model can make for one child,” Wall said in a statement.

The idea was inspired by freshman Isaac Merida, who began meeting with a Jefferson student for weekly lunches soon after arriving at the Winona Lake college, a news release said.

Becoming a lunch buddy has given Merida an opportunity to make a difference before having a class of his own, the release said.

“There are so many different types of families today,” Merida said in a statement. “Some kids grow up without a father figure or a positive male role model, so having a male presence in the elementary schools can really help. After all, students are with their teachers for a large portion of the week – that poses a huge opportunity to make an impact on their lives.”

Kevin Voogt, an assistant professor of education, is spearheading the program to create a pathway for all male education majors to serve in a similar capacity, the release said.

The volunteers will begin meeting with Jefferson students monthly over lunch and recess, the release said, and the group might later expand to include after-school tutoring.

“We have more than 20 men in the School of Education, and a good number of them have already expressed excitement about this new opportunity,” Voogt said in a statement. “It's all about being a presence and being a light, and that's what our students at Grace are all about.” 


• Submissions are due Feb. 5 for Project Pigasus, a statewide screenwriting contest for high school students. The winning short screenplay will be produced in the student's home community by a professional filmmaking crew and will be screened in Indiana theaters and submitted to national film festivals. Visit for information.


• Huntington University received a $160,000 grant from AWS Foundation. The funds will support a pilot program exploring options for students in the ABLE Program to participate in various levels of residence life at the university. The program – whose name stands for Achieving Balance in Life through Education – has provided individuals with intellectual disabilities ages 18 to 24 with opportunities to be part of a university campus since fall 2014.

Indiana Tech

• Indiana Tech has renamed its College of Engineering and Computer Sciences in honor of the family of distinguished alumnus Ravi Talwar and his wife, Eleanor Talwar. The Talwar College of Engineering and Computer Sciences name was recommended by the university's senior leadership and unanimously supported by the board of trustees.

Ivy Tech

• Ivy Tech Community College Fort Wayne and Warsaw will operate on adjusted hours this month. Through Jan. 25, Fort Wayne and Warsaw extended student service office hours are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Fort Wayne) and 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. (Warsaw) Monday through Thursday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Fort Wayne) and 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Warsaw) Friday. Closed Saturday and Sunday. All Ivy Tech campuses will be closed Jan. 17 in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Fort Wayne and Warsaw spring classes begin Jan. 19.


• Northwest Allen County Schools will host a job fair from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at Carroll Middle School, 4027 Hathaway Road. The event is for people 18 and older seeking full- or part-time employment. Department leaders and representatives will be available to discuss current and future positions. Benefit information will also be available. NACS will provide laptop access and support for anyone completing the online application onsite. Applicants should bring all necessary documents or certifications required for positions of interest. Available positions include instructional assistants, food service assistants, substitute staff, bus drivers, custodial staff, buildings and grounds staff, technology staff, school nurse, office staff, middle and high school athletics coaches, lifeguards, swim instructors and teachers. Call Lisa Harris at 260-637-3155 with questions. Employment information can be found at


• INLearning Partnership is a free resource for Hoosier teachers, offering curated resources and live events that equip, enhance and empower educators with the tools they need to be successful. Visit for information.


• Applications for the Ataya Kaser Memorial Scholarship are due Feb. 1. Two $4,000 scholarships will be awarded. Visit for information or contact Corie Walls at with questions.


• Through Trine University's new Indiana Promise initiative, Hoosier students are guaranteed a minimum of $15,000 in scholarships and grants toward tuition at Trine if their expected family contribution is $0 after completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and if they are eligible for the maximum of Indiana state and Pell grants. Depending on the total package received and the major chosen, the Indiana Promise – combined with state and Pell grants – will nearly or totally cover tuition at Trine. Visit for information.

Kandra Tubbs of Berne was among 10 seniors in Trine University's Allen School of Engineering and Computing inducted into the Order of the Engineer on Dec. 8.

Kyle Callahan, a business administration major from Fort Wayne, was one of two Trine seniors selected to join the prestigious Orr Fellowship. He was among 100 students who recently accepted a job offer in Indianapolis through the fellowship. In addition to his full-time, salaried position, he will participate in the fellowship's programming, which is dedicated to nurturing the entrepreneurial spirit and developing strong leadership skills.

Students and parents who have a favorite teacher can nominate the individual for Teacher Honor Roll. Send nominations to The Journal Gazette, 600 W. Main St., Fort Wayne, IN 46802; fax 461-8893 or email

To submit an item, send a typed release from the school or organization to Education Notebook, The Journal Gazette, 600 W. Main St., Fort Wayne, IN 46802; fax 461-8893 or email at least two weeks before the desired publication date.

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