Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp
Editor, Sagamore, 1977
Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp's affiliation with IUPUI began in the years when only a small IU downtown extension campus existed in Indianapolis. Sharp took classes at the downtown campus part-time, but withdrew after she married and moved with her husband to Washington D.C. Sharp returned to Indianapolis in 1969 and took a job as a secretary at the newly created IUPUI. She worked for the campus's purchasing agent, the Department of Continuing Studies, and Robert Peale, chairman of the Department of Manufacturing Technology. Sharp resumed taking classes after the birth of her first child and graduated with a degree in education in 1978.
In the late 1970s, Sharp served as the editor of the student newspaper, Sagamore. As editor, she increased annual advertising revenue by $35,000. Sharp was concerned with IUPUI's image within the Indianapolis community and around 1977 began a campaign to gain recognition for IUPUI as a distinct entity. The campaign targeted the Indianapolis community and the IU higher administration, both of whom continued to refer to the campus by a variety of incorrect names. For example, IU still referred to IUPUI in press releases as IPI (Indiana Purdue Indianapolis). The campaign effectively raised awareness for IUPUI's correct name.
After graduation, Sharp continued to serve the campus as a member of the student publications advisory board. In the 1990s, she led an unsuccessful attempt to establish a separate IUPUI Alumni Association and later joined the editorial board of the Indiana Alumni Magazine in an attempt to raise awareness about the need to include articles about regional campuses in the publication.
Sharp began her career in journalism in the IUPUI News Bureau and currently works at the Indianapolis Star as a gardening columnist. She is also the editor of Indiana Living Green, the director of the Garden Writers Association, Secretary of the Marion County Extension Office, Director of the IMA Horticultural Society, Secretary of the Friends of Garfield Park, Inc., and President of the Board of Business Ownership Initiative of Indiana.
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