Latest News

Academy Instructor of Life Sciences Receives Prestigious Award

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Academy instructor Michael Mayfield has been selected as the 2018-19 recipient of the prestigious Battey National Educator Award. The award provides a plaque, an honorarium of $8000 to Mr. Mayfield, and a grant of $2000 to the Indiana Academy to be applied to our programs.

Kiara Goodwin, an Academy alum and current senior at DePauw University, nominated Mr. Mayfield for the award. Her nomination expressed the inspiration and vigor of Mr. Mayfield’s teaching style.

Mr. Mayfield will be recognized at the annual Chuck and Joan Battey dinner reception at DePauw University.

Indiana Academy Students Win Midwest Speech Contest, Advance to Nationals in Los Angeles

Monday, March 25, 2019

Two Academy students, Kevin Gao and Sage Hamm, were recognized on Saturday, March 23 in Chicago at the Japanese Consulate’s 49th annual speech contest. Their Japanese speeches were among the ten best high school essays selected from the Midwest, and they were invited to give their speech at the contest. Sage Hamm won first place, and Kevin Gao won third. It is an incredible achievement as they beat out other students who had the same or more years of experience in Japanese. The first, second, and third place winners of this speech contest will be sent by the Chicago Japanese Consulate to represent the Midwest at the National Japanese Speech Contest held in Los Angeles in May.

Academy Seniors Participate in Poverty Simulation

Friday, March 22, 2019

Academy seniors participate in a poverty simulation in the Student Center Ballroom
Academy seniors participate in a poverty simulation in the Student Center Ballroom.

As part of the Senior Colloquium “Topics and Perspective in Economics,” approximately 120 Academy seniors participated in a poverty simulation presented by Second Harvest Food Bank on Tuesday, March 19. During the two-hour simulation, the students were divided into around 40 families who each had to deal with limited resources, increased stress, and other situations faced by the economically disadvantaged. The simulation, conducted by Ms. Dorica Watson from Second Harvest, was divided into four fifteen-minute “weeks” during which the students had to work (or try to find work), pay their rent or mortgage, shop for food, ensure that their children attended school or were otherwise cared for, and try not to run afoul of the law.

Students purchasing food at simulated store
A group of students make purchases at the “Realville” superstore.

Over the course of the program, students quickly learned how difficult “real life” can be to manage when faced with resource insecurity, and how poverty and stress can force people to make choices that they wouldn’t otherwise make. From time to time, Ms. Watson would hand out “Bad News” cards piling on additional hardships for the students to face, based on her real experiences helping the economically disadvantaged.

Mr. John Marsh, co-instructor of the Colloquium course, helped to organize the event. A number of Academy juniors ran the local businesses in “Realville” which included a bank, employers, a superstore, a homeless shelter, a realtor, the utility company, a school, a pawn shop, a payday loan provider, police, social services, and a community action agency. At the end of the simulation, all of the participants gathered to share their experiences, which Ms. Watson helped to relate to the real experiences of those dealing with resource insecurity.

Students Serve as Pages at the Indiana Statehouse

Thursday, March 14, 2019

During the 2019 session of the Indiana General Assembly, 45 Academy students served as Senate Pages and House Pages. In addition to touring the historic Statehouse which includes the House and Senate Chambers, the Supreme Court, and the Governor’s Office, students had the opportunity to observe the legislative session directly from the Statehouse floor in addition to meeting and assisting their specific legislator with tasks.

Academy Senate Pages
Indiana Academy Senate Pages

Academy students serving as Senate Pages at the Indiana Statehouse on Wednesday, February 13:

Student (Senator)Student (Senator)
Rahul Agarwal (Mike Gaskill)Alexandra Klingsmith (Chris Garten)
Isabelle Berhman (Timothy Lanane)Lillia Mangel-Martin (Ed Charbonneu)
Suzanne Brown (Rick Niemeyer)Alan Pieper (Eric Bassler)
Amy Ciceu (Mark Messmer)Khristian Reed (Susan Glick)
Logan Criner (Phillip Boots)Isabel Reynolds (Ed Charbonneu)
Alexandra Dines (Karen Tallinn)Lillian Rogers (Ed Charbonneu)
Naomi Edet (Frank Mrvan)Evalina Schneider (Rodric Bray)
Meredith Fairman (Liz Brown)Jessica Schwarz (Chip Perfect)
Dryden Frecker (John Crane)Kaitlin Scott (Jean Leising)
Eric Harman (Randall Head)Nora Slaven (Jeff Raatz)
Izabelle Hilderbrand (Eric Bassler)Amber Thurston (Aaron Freeman)
Lucy Khatib (Sue Errington)Jason Wroblewski (Ryan Mishler)
Academy Pages with Senator Brown
Students pictured with Senator Liz Brown on February 13, 2019.

Academy students serving as House Pages at the Statehouse on Tuesday, March 12:

Student (Representative)
Isabelle Behrman (Sue Errington)
Logan Criner (Timothy Brown)
Naomi Edet (Mara Candeleria Reardon)
Benjamin Erwin (Randall Frye)
Eric Harman (David Wolkins)
Izabelle Hilderbrand (Jeff Ellington)
Madison Hull (Chris Judy)
Evan Jannerjahn (Kevin Mahan)
Komal Kumar (Dale DeVon)
Hanbit Lee (Sue Errington)
Sydney Mrazik (Alan Morrison)
Jacob Nichols (Jim Pressel)
Khristian Reed (Dennis Zent)
Lillian Rogers (Ed Soliday)
Evalina Schneider (David Frizzell)
Nora Slaven (Thomas Saunders)
Abagail Smith (Dale DeVon)
Rachel Snow (Sue Errington)
Jalyn Upshaw (Earl Harris)
Samantha Walkley (Chuck Goodrich)
Jacob Zeh (Chuck Goodrich)
Academy Pages at Ball State Day
Students pictured during Ball State Day at the Statehouse on March 12, 2019 with Ball State President Geoffrey Mearns, Senator Tim Lanane, and Representative Sue Errington.

German 2 Students Excel at National German Exam

Friday, February 22, 2019

Twelve Indiana Academy German 2 students earned awards for their efforts on the National German Exam. The scores listed below reflects the percentile rank among all students, heritage speakers included, who took the test for Level 2.

Gold Medals were awarded to:

Brandon Kem96%
Noah Migoski96%
Marc Bailey95%
Sam Shephard95%
Isabel Reynolds94%
Lillia Mangel-Martin89%

Silver Medals were awarded to:

Mary Wilson87%
Dawson Crisman84%
Hannah Jones84%
Dillon Linville84%

Bronze Medals were awarded to:

Ahna Abraham75%
Cameron Gage72%
Indiana Academy at ISGA Staatskongress
Back row, l-to-r: Jacob McCormick, Brandon Kem, Dawson Crisman, Noah Migoski
Middle row, l-to-r: Kaileb White, Logan Telschow, Sam Shephard
Front row, l-to-r: Isabel Reynolds, Hannah Jones.

On Saturday, February 16, nine of our German students attended the annual ISGA Staatskongress, hosted by the German Department at Ball State, and this year, our school won the Quiz Bowl competition. The winning team was made up of Hannah Jones, Noah Migoski, Isabel Reynolds, and Sam Shephard. Well done, team!

Congratulations to these students and their instructor, Ms. Heather Rogers, on their accomplishment and their continued dedication to learning the German language.

Academy Teams Win First Place in All Three Levels at Japanese Olympiad

Monday, February 18, 2019

Academy Japan Olympiad teams
Instructor Clara Chi and the Indiana Academy’s Japan Olympiad teams with their first-place awards.

All three levels of the Academy’s Japanese students won first place in the Japanese Olympiad of Indiana (JOI) held on Saturday, Feb. 16 on the campus of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. JOI is a Japanese language and culture quiz bowl for all high school students studying Japanese in Indiana. The annual competition has teams of high school students showcase their knowledge of Japanese language, culture, society and history. This year nine schools participated, with around 90 students competing.

In past years, the Academy only had a team for Level II. This year the Academy was able to have teams for each of the three levels. Congratulations to all three Indiana Academy teams and their instructor, Ms. Clara Chi, for winning first place!

Level II team (2 years of high school Japanese)
Captain: Kiersten Hardy
Kellie Geisel
Khristian Reed

Level III team (3 years of high school Japanese)
Captain: Katie Basey
Samantha Murray
Nicole Nguyen
Leah Chambers (alternate)

Level IV team (4 years of high school Japanese)
Captain: Kevin Gao
Alice Zheng
Sage Hamm

Academy Closed Wednesday (1/30) and Part of Thursday (1/31)

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Ball State University is closing Wednesday January 30 through 11:00 a.m. Thursday January 31 due to the anticipated extremely cold and dangerous weather. The purpose of this message is to provide all students with the same instructions regarding your classes. Classes will be conducted through an e-Learning format to avoid making up the missed school day at a later date.

Note to parents: The residence hall remains open during this time. Students are not being sent home.

For all Academy classes that meet on Wednesday, January 30

  • Your instructor will contact you with instructions regarding your assignment. The contact will most likely be by e-mail, but a few instructors may have given information during class today.
  • Each class assignment will require you to produce a product of some sort. The product will serve as evidence of your participation in the e-Learning class
  • The product must be sent or given to your instructor no later than midnight on Friday, February 1st. Products may be turned in earlier if desired.
  • The product will be your evidence of having attended class on the e-Learning day. Failure to submit your product will result in an unexcused absence and a zero for the assignment.

For any Academy classes that meets 8:00 – 11:00 on Thursday, January 31

  • Classes that normally meet from 10:00 – 12:00 will meet at 11:00. Please plan on attending these classes.
  • All other classes that meet prior to 11:00 are cancelled. However, your instructor may send you an assignment so watch your e-mail for instructions.

Study Hall

  • Study hall is cancelled for Wednesday, January 30th.

If you have questions regarding your assignment, please contact your instructor.

If you have questions regarding an Academic situation or concern, please contact Dr. Jeff Smith or Dr. Dain Kavars.

Rising Stars of Indiana Class of 2020

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

The Indiana Association of School Principals (IASP) recently announced the Rising Stars of Indiana Class of 2020. Each Indiana high school was invited to recognize up to four students currently in the 11th grade, based on their academic achievement. Students recognized from the Indiana Academy are:

Allison Foury
Collin Kinney
Komal Kumar
Nicole Nguyen

The Indiana Academy, along with IASP, congratulates these students on all they have already achieved, as well as offering support and encouragement as they continue their accomplishments and expand their knowledge, growth and leadership skills well into the future.

Two Indiana Academy Teachers Awarded Grants

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

The Community Foundation of Muncie and Delaware County, Inc. recently announced that two Indiana Academy teachers will receive a Robert P. Bell Education Grant. Funded projects are creative or innovative classroom projects designed to stimulate learning in students. Awards of up to $450 are available through the Bell Grants program, and eighteen local teachers will receive $4,863 for 13 projects.

Bell Grants for the second cycle of this school year that were awarded to the Indiana Academy:

  • Thomas Arnold was awarded $112 to use sketching techniques to teach high school juniors to see the changes in the landscape of North America from different points in history to the present day. Students are instructed in collage and other art techniques to produce a final sketch that backdates their chosen present-day landscape to its circumstances before the arrival of Europeans, or even humans at all.
  • Stephanie Nagelkirk was awarded $336 to provide high school juniors and seniors with an understanding of the Harlem Renaissance Period in African-American Literature and culture. Each student selects one historical figure who contributed to the period to learn about in detail. Students then plan an authentic formal party and assume the role of their researched character to share what they have learned with classmates.

Bell Grants are funded through the Robert P. Bell Teacher Grants Fund at The Community Foundation. This fund ensures that teachers have access to grants to help engage their students in meaningful ways for years to come. All Delaware County teachers are able to apply during any of the four grant cycles. Across the county, thousands of students benefit from Bell Education Grants each year.

Satellite Designed by Indiana Academy Students Set to Launch Aboard a NASA Rocket

Friday, October 19, 2018

Indiana Academy Instructor Susie Cunningham describing the workings of the ThinSat module.

Susie Cunningham, an Academy computer science instructor, along with a class of her students have been collaborating with a company called Near Space Launch ( on a “ThinSat” satellite project. Near Space Launch donated several of the ThinSat kits to the Academy. The satellite designed by the Academy students is only one of a few selected to have their ThinSat launch into orbit. The NG-10 mission that includes their ThinSat is scheduled to launch on November 15, 2018 from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia aboard a Northrop Grumman Antares rocket on a resupply mission to the International Space Station. Update: The launch date for the ThinSat has been moved to NG-11 in the spring of 2019.

Susie and her students have been designing, building, testing, and operating the ThinSat kits since last year. Phase 1 of the ThinSat kit included components that could be used to learn about electronics and sensors, and perform small balloon flight experiments. The Phase 2 kit included an Engineering Unit of the ThinSat as a practice unit for the students to design and test their payloads. Their units, or exact replicas of them, flew on several high altitude balloon launches this past summer to perform an end-to-end test of the system. The Phase 3 Flight Units were built and integrated by Near Space Launch, using the design specifications or custom payloads delivered to them by the Academy.

Once the Academy’s ThinSat is launched and deployed into orbit from the Antares rocket, Near Space Launch will begin live streaming data over their servers, which can then be accessed by students at the Academy. They will be able to see the data from their satellite, along with data from every other school, streaming over the internet in real time. This will then allow them to perform data analysis and understanding of what is happening in orbit.

The Indiana Academy’s logo and signatures of the students involved with the project are included on the ThinSat that is set to launch aboard the NASA rocket. The launch date is subject to change, and this story will be updated if it does.