Evansville, IN – Jonathan Weinzapfel, chancellor of Ivy Tech Community College Evansville Campus, is resigning his position to join the law firm Jones Wallace LLC, an Evansville legal firm providing service to mid-size tri-state businesses, as partner. His last day with Ivy Tech will be November 30. Evansville Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Kelly Cozart, will serve as the campus interim chancellor upon Weinzapfel’s departure.
”I have enjoyed my time at Ivy Tech. Its mission of providing folks a head start on a great career or a solid foundation to earn their baccalaureate degree is vital to the future of our state and its communities. With a great team of individuals in Evansville, we have accomplished a lot and I am very proud of our work,” Weinzapfel said. “Nonetheless, after five and a half years, it is time for me to move on to new professional challenges. I look forward to getting back into the active practice of law.”
Weinzapfel began his tenure at Ivy Tech in May 2014, as chancellor of the newly merged Evansville and Terre Haute campuses and their associated sites. In 2017, the two regions separated, and he remained chancellor in Evansville.
Weinzapfel led several initiatives designed to serve Southwest Indiana business, industry, and residents during his 5+ years at the state community college.
One of these was the Achieve Your Degree program, which began on the Evansville campus, and now has spread to nearly all of the 19 campuses throughout the state. This program, which began with Old National Bank, offers an opportunity for an employer who has tuition remission benefits to have the ability to offer a free community college education to their employees, with no upfront costs. Ivy Tech assists students with the college and financial aid application and defers billing until the end of the semester – ensuring that students take advantage of any financial aid opportunities for which they qualify. The company tuition plan then covers the balance per their own company policy.
“Jonathan has served Ivy Tech Community College and our Evansville community well. He developed new intuitive programs like Achieve Your Degree, which started at the campus and grew into a statewide model endorsed by the Indiana Chamber with more than 170 companies and several thousands of their employees pursuing degrees and credentials in high demand careers,” Ivy Tech President Sue Ellspermann said. “We wish Jonathan well in his future endeavors and thank him for his commitment to our students.”
The College Connection Coach initiative, also began on the Evansville and Terre Haute campuses, and has been instituted at several other Ivy Tech campuses. These coaches are embedded in area high schools and work closely with high school students to help them with understanding the value of higher education and with the search and application process. The newest addition to this initiative is reaching down into the middle schools to build the college-going philosophy with students and families; and to assist with the application for 21st Century Scholars, which offers a free college education.
Another such effort that was developed under Weinzapfel’s leadership is Pathways Plus which offers a way to help prepare high school students for high-wage, high-demand careers that exist in Southwest Indiana communities. It allows students to complete a college credential before they graduate from high school. Pathways Plus builds on the many dual credit courses already offered in the Evansville Vanderburgh School Corporation and the Southern Indiana Career & Technical Center. By combining dual credits students are earning at their school, with dual enrollment courses offered at Ivy Tech, the college and school corporation are providing intentional career pathways that can lead to a college credential.
Weinzapfel currently serves on the Indiana Humanities Board of Trustees, the Vanderburgh Community Foundation Advisory Board, and the Board of Directors for Deaconess Health Systems, WNIN, Economic Development Coalition of Southwestern Indiana, Indiana United Ways, and the United Way of Southwestern Indiana. He is also a member of Rotary of Evansville, Southwest Indiana Chamber of Commerce and Jasper Chamber of Commerce.
Prior to his role at Ivy Tech, he was a practicing attorney at Faegre Baker Daniels. His professional experience includes serving as the Mayor of the City of Evansville (2004-2011) and State Representative in the Indiana General Assembly (1999-2003).
Some of his notable experiences include serving as a Legislative Assistant to Congressman Frank McCloskey (1990-1993), Deputy Commissioner for the Indiana Department of Labor (1998-1999), Public Relations Manager at Old National Bank (1993-1995), and Sales Representative for Eli Lilly and Company (1988-1990).