The Opportunity

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly-accredited statewide community college system. Ivy Tech has more than 40 sites, including 19 campuses serving 90,000 students throughout Indiana and over 60,000 dual credit students in high schools across Indiana. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering associate degrees, short-term certificate programs, and training opportunities that align to the needs of the community. The College also offers courses and associate degree programs that seamlessly transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana, as well as out-of-state, for a more affordable route to a bachelor’s degree. Ivy Tech employs 3,100 full-time faculty and staff and another 3,500 adjunct faculty and part-time staff.

The Position

Role of the Vice President for Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness for Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech seeks a dynamic leader to serve as their vice president for public safety and emergency preparedness. Reporting to the senior vice president for business affairs & chief financial officer, the vice president provides executive leadership for public safety and emergency preparedness (PSEP) for the protection of the faculty, staff, students, and guests of Ivy Tech Community College’s 19 campuses. This position is responsible for the coordination of safety and disaster preparedness plans, business continuity plans, and the development of environmental health and safety policies, practices, and procedures for the overall health and safety of Ivy Tech’s students, faculty, and staff. Further, the vice president assists all campuses in the implementation of all PSEP safety policies, programs, and procedures and continually educates and advises College leaders, students, faculty, and staff, to reduce risks and remain informed of the changes that occur within the Ivy Tech community. The position has direct oversight of five talented staff members and works with an additional 250 security staff members throughout the 19 campuses.

Major responsibilities include:

  • work closely with the Office of Academic Affairs to promote and maintain a safe campus environment conducive to learning;
  • lead the design and implementation of a comprehensive College business continuity program;
  • lead the design and implementation of campus and Systems Office comprehensive emergency management plans and programs, including simulations within the College and local emergency management and law enforcement;
  • gather, analyze, and evaluate safety and security related data that are essential to the operations of the College;
  • serve as the statewide coordinator and incident commander for safety and disaster response;
  • lead an organizational public safety philosophy utilizing best practices;
  • produce written detailed policies and procedures that specify the tasks, responsibilities, authority, chain of command, and communications functions for PSEP;
  • responsible for ensuring institutional compliance with the Clery Act and other federal, state, and local laws and regulations;
  • maintain a standard for the use of security officers or employment of off-duty law enforcement officers to provide a security presence at all campuses;
  • work with campus staff in specifying security equipment, cameras, monitors, and other security and safety systems installed in College facilities and utilized by security staff;
  • perform periodic reviews, updates, and corrections of policies and procedures, as well as critiques of incident responses;
  • provide organizational presence and voice within the Systems Office to speak for and support PSEP;
  • recommend corrective action of past incidents to resolve and prevent any recurrence;
  • supervise the maintenance of safety and security records, and disseminate as required by law or established College policy or procedure;
  • oversee dissemination of emergency information via Ivy Tech media sources (e-mail, voice mail, print media) when appropriate (criminal activity, inclement weather/school closings, service information, etc.);
  • draft and oversee the implementation of the PSEP budget.

History of the Position

The former vice president recently left to pursue an exciting career opportunity. The public safety and emergency services operation is well-suited to meet the changing needs of the individual campuses while also providing a level of consistent service across all campuses. The new vice president will find a committed staff and a strong foundation from which to build upon.

Opportunities and Challenges of the Role

The new vice president will encounter the following opportunities and challenges:

Ivy Tech is a complex institution with 19 campuses and 45 sites that align with the different campuses. Under Clery, this equates to 64 campuses reporting. A minimum staffing standard exists for all campuses based on size and location with each campus maintaining a PSEP campus lead. It will take the new vice president some time to truly understand the College system and the intricacies associated with the varied campuses and sites.

Each of the 19 campuses has its own chancellor, reporting to the College’s President. The vice president must understand the nuances of each of the campuses, as well as ensure that each chancellor is properly communicated with and all information is timely and consistent.

The vice president will find a welcoming environment at Ivy Tech with senior administration being very supportive of PSEP and all its endeavors.

It is imperative the new vice president understands the importance of not exposing the College to risk. This will require a continual awareness of what is occurring on every campus, as well as the state and working with the senior administrators, law enforcement, and emergency management to make sound decisions.

As the pandemic allows for a return to campuses, the vice president will need to ensure students, faculty, and staff feel safe and comfortable.

Measures of Success

At an appropriate interval after joining Ivy Tech, the following will define initial success for the vice president:

  • the vice president has established strong relationships with key stakeholders across the system;
  • the vice president is a trusted partner of the college community, including the senior administration by being involved, visible, transparent, responsive, and engaged;
  • the PSEP staff feel valued and supported by the vice president and are working as a cohesive team;
  • the vice president has continually worked to keep PSEP moving forward in a positive direction incorporating best practices and innovative services;
  • business continuity planning and emergency preparedness practice exercises are commonplace institution-wide;
  • the vice president has worked to develop and refine practices, policies, and procedures;
  • all the campuses are environments where students, faculty, and staff feel safe;
  • neither the institution nor the president is in the headlines;
  • all members of PSEP feel part of the Ivy Tech family;
  • the vice president is learning the complexities of the Systems Office and the nuances of each campus;
  • the vice president has a true sense of the pulse of the College;
  • the vice president has fostered positive working relationships with nearby four-year institutions.

Qualifications and Characteristics

The successful candidate will have a master’s degree in public safety management, criminal justice, or other related field, and a minimum of ten years of experience in emergency management, safety and security, law enforcement, fire, risk management, or related field with five years serving in a leadership capacity. The vice president must possess exceptional interpersonal and leadership skills; the ability to respond to a demanding customer service environment; excellent understanding of security and investigation procedures; knowledge of and experience with supervisory techniques, management principles, and administrative leadership; and a demonstrated ability to exercise sound judgment in emergency situations. Further, candidates must demonstrate an ability to promote an inclusive environment that both reflects the broad diversity and backgrounds represented by Ivy Tech students and employees and allows for every individual to feel respected and valued. The vice president must possess, or be able to obtain, a valid driver’s license and be willing and able to travel in and out-of-state. A deep understanding of federal, state, and local laws governing security in the public sector or higher education and familiarity with state-of-the-art security systems (e.g., scanners, cameras, facility access systems) are preferred.

In addition to the stated qualifications and characteristics, Ivy Tech stakeholders identified the following characteristics as important for the incoming vice president (in no particular order):

  • strong executive presence with the ability to appropriately command a room when necessary;
  • subject matter expert for all areas of public safety and emergency preparedness;
  • excellent interpersonal communication skills;
  • an in depth understanding of applicable laws, risk management, security procedure, policy, and protocol necessary to inform an immediate and correct response to emergency situations;
  • a visionary leader with the ability to translate strategic thinking into initiatives, operational directives, and policy formation;
  • politically and organizationally astute;
  • an innovative leader with a readiness to incorporate new ideas and approaches;
  • appreciation for the College’s mission, values, and culture;
  • demonstrated business continuity, emergency preparedness, and crisis response experiences and ability to work closely with senior administration and faculty to appropriately educate and train the campuses;
  • ability to maintain a highly customer-service focused approach to their work;
  • ability to coordinate emergency preparedness training and drills for all levels of stakeholders across the campuses;
  • possess a strong understanding of, and experience with, both ICS and NIMS;
  • a passion for serving in an educational environment with an ability to build strong rapport with students, faculty, and staff;
  • a high commitment to both professional and personal growth and development as a manager, leader, and public safety expert and deep commitment to the professional development and training of staff;
  • highly energetic individual with a strong sense of self and ability to appropriately infuse humor and enthusiasm into the workplace and the Ivy Tech community;
  • deep knowledge and appreciation of current technology and national best practices, as well as the ability to leverage technology to enhance safety;
  • proven success building a strong, cohesive department with well-trained professional staff;
  • team player and valued partner with a high level of professional ethics, personal integrity and the ability to inspire confidence in all constituents;
  • a high degree of visibility and engagement throughout the campuses and the surrounding communities;
  • ability to collect, analyze, and effectively use data to make informed decisions for the College;
  • proven ability to form critical relationships with local, state, regional, and federal law enforcement/emergency response agencies.

Overview of the Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Department


The mission of Ivy Tech Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness is to serve students, faculty, staff, and guests by providing a safe and secure working and learning environment. The Department seeks to achieve a prepared, informed, and resilient College community through a comprehensive emergency management and continuity program.

Core Values

Integrity is always serving honorably, without bias, and is a non-negotiable. The Department commits to act with honesty and fairness in order to inspire the confidence and trust of the College community.

Customer Service is the act of providing assistance that is compassionate, fair, helpful, courteous, and impartial. The Department strives for excellence in all it does to meet the needs of the community.

Accountability is accepting responsibility for all actions taken by the members of the Department. The Department ensures the use of College resources in the most effective and efficient manner possible.

Respect is treating everyone with dignity, fairness, and compassion with consideration to the uniqueness of all those in the community. The Department seeks to foster and preserve mutual trust.

Matt Hawkins, Senior Vice President for Business Affairs & Chief Financial Officer

Matt Hawkins is senior vice president for business affairs & chief financial officer for Ivy Tech Community College. In this role, Hawkins serves as the chief financial officer and treasurer for the institution overseeing public safety and emergency preparedness, capital planning and facilitates, government and legislative affairs, financial planning and management, strategic sourcing, financial aid, cash and debt management, accounting, sponsored programs, compliance, and payroll.

Prior to Ivy Tech, Hawkins served as associate vice president for finance at Ball State University, chief operating and chief financial officer for the Indiana Commission for Higher Education, and spent six years in finance at Butler University. Hawkins also worked for Ivy Tech from 2010 to 2013 as the executive director of the statewide grant office.

Hawkins’ contributions in the community and leadership in the finance field has earned several recognitions, including the 2018 Inspire Award for excellence in the workplace and community by College Mentors for Kids. He also was recognized as an Honoree for Indiana Business Journal’s 2020 CFO of the Year in the NFP/Government category.

Hawkins earned his Master of Business Administration with a Leadership Concentration from Butler University. He also holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Trine University Ketner School of Business.

Institution & Location

Institutional Overview

Ivy Tech was founded in 1963 as Indiana Vocational Technical College. At that time, the institution focused primarily on technical and vocational education—but in the more than 50 years since, it has gone through enormous changes. Today, Ivy Tech is Indiana’s only full-fledged community college, offering programs in the following schools (and offering more than 100 transfer programs with in-state and out-of-state schools):

  • School of Business, Logistics, & Supply Chain
  • School of Public Affairs & Social Services
  • School of Information Technology
  • School of Arts, Sciences & Education
  • School of Health Sciences
  • School of Nursing
  • School of Advanced Manufacturing, Engineering & Applied Science

Ivy Tech offers hands-on experience with some of the state’s most advanced technologies and training facilities, the convenience of more than 1,000 online classes, and the attention that comes with small average class sizes.

Ivy Tech has more than 40 locations and teaches classes in more than 75 communities. It has grown to become the largest public postsecondary institution in Indiana—and the largest singly-accredited statewide community college system in the entire country.

It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and shapes the curriculum with the needs of local communities in mind—while the affordable tuition rates (annual full-time tuition just over $4,300) keep higher education accessible for these communities’ residents. This consideration results in 91% of Ivy Tech’s graduates staying in Indiana.

All these elements combine to make Ivy Tech a true engine of Indiana’s workforce, training Hoosiers for the careers that will grow Indiana’s future economy.

About Indianapolis, Indiana

Indianapolis, or Indy, has been known by many names throughout its nearly 200-year history. When the new state capital was planned in 1821, surveyors never thought it would grow beyond Mile Square. Today, the city is home to more than 820,000 residents, as well as seven universities, three Fortune 500 companies, two major league sports teams, and the largest-capacity sports venue in the world (Indianapolis Motor Speedway).

Indianapolis is also the:

  • capital of Indiana;
  • largest city in Indiana;
  • 17th most populous city in the United States, as well as the 4th largest state capital;
  • seat of Marion County;
  • racing capital of the world (home of the Indianapolis 500);
  • amateur sports Capital of the World.

Indianapolis is also a great place to live, work, and raise a family. From museums to monuments, from sprawling parks to urban trails, there is no shortage of great things to do in Indianapolis. The very active (and recently renovated) Indiana Convention Center is home to a number of major events that draw crowds from all over the city, state, and even the world. Indy’s history can be explored by way of the Cultural Trail, which winds through the city’s cultural districts and other historic communities. The suburbs of Indianapolis make up the atmosphere of central Indiana. Indy has an undying love for sports, both amateur and professional, and is the city that so many Hoosiers call home.

Mission and Vision


Ivy Tech serves the people of Indiana through accessible and affordable world-class education and adaptive learning. The College empowers students to achieve their career and transfer aspirations. It embraces the vision of economic transformation inspired by the education and earnings attainment of the citizens, the vitality of the workforce, and the prosperity of the unique and diverse communities.


Ivy Tech Community College students will earn 50,000 high-quality certifications, certificates, and degrees per year aligned with the needs of the workforce.

Core Values


Ivy Tech affirms ethical and academic standards that guide personal and intellectual development through principles of honesty, integrity, and fairness.

Ivy Tech fosters engaging learning environments that employ leading technology and learning pathways that both challenge and support the students as they explore their potential.

Ivy Tech stands with students facing challenges impacting their college and career aspirations by leveraging the resources and services of the college and community partners.


Ivy Tech commits to the discovery of insight and understanding through research, analysis, and measures as it advances educational attainment and aligns contributions to the future needs of employers, educational partners, and communities.


Ivy Tech cultivates intellectual and cultural diversity; promotes the free, open, and civil exchange of ideas; and celebrates the uniqueness of students, employees, and communities.


Ivy Tech seeks and supports collaborative relationships with community, philanthropic, workforce, and educational partners as they strive to achieve the mission of the College.

Trustworthy and Transparent

Ivy Tech practices honesty, courtesy, and civility, respecting all. Ivy Tech believes in a college community inspired by collegiality, collaboration, and open communication.

Strategic Plan

Ivy Tech Community College is committed to enabling hardworking students to finish their programs and find high-value careers in growing fields. The eight goals of its strategic plan outline how the College will achieve the vision of students earning 50,000 high-quality certifications, certificates, or degrees annually.

Goal 1 – Student Success

Ensure every student persists towards their educational objective. 

Ivy Tech Community College has one primary purpose: to engage all students so they successfully launch or expand their careers, or educational opportunities, upon certificate or degree completion. Together, faculty and staff are committed to educational and career-oriented success. Ivy Tech strives to help students move through programs efficiently, passing courses on the first attempt and persisting through to certificate or degree completion. In addition, Ivy Tech will find ways to expand selective admissions and high-demand programs while balancing student aspirations and workforce needs.

Goal 2 – Recruitment and Enrollment

Recruit and enroll Hoosiers from every demographic into high-demand/high-wage career pathways. 

Ivy Tech Community College welcomes those interested in furthering their education or advancing their careers. Students of all ages, backgrounds, interests, and education levels can earn any of the College’s broad-ranging degree and certificate options. Ivy Tech will actively recruit students into high-value programs, placing them on a pathway to high-demand, high-wage jobs within their communities. The College will purposefully work with those students to enroll them in the right program, classes, and schedule to meet their diverse needs.

Goal 3 – Completion

Students earn 50,000 high-quality certificates, certifications, and degrees annually. 

Ivy Tech Community College is committed to seeing students through to completion and will provide intentional academic advising to students so they can choose a career or higher education pathway from the beginning of their college experience. Ivy Tech will quantify the value of certificates in the workplace, expedite the time to completion through enhanced scheduling, streamline Prior Learning Assessment, and increase the understanding of the value of a credential, both long- and short-term.

Goal 4 – Workforce

Students are placed into and succeed in high-demand, high-wage jobs. 

By 2025, employers in Indiana will need to fill one million high-demand, high-wage jobs. Approximately half of those jobs will require a high-quality, post-secondary degree or certificate. Ivy Tech Community College will play a central role in preparing Indiana’s workforce by being student-centric, demand-driven, and aligned with the state’s key economic sectors.

Goal 5 – Employee

Become known as a great place to work. 

Ivy Tech Community College faculty and staff are the most critical resources on campus. They enable student success, respond to employer needs, and help Ivy Tech make a difference within its communities. It is incumbent upon the College to recruit and retain high-performing talent, provide venues for creativity, and increase innovation. Ivy Tech will adopt a model to attract, retain, and develop a cadre of diverse faculty focused on student engagement.

Goal 6 – Financial

Ensure the institution has sufficient financial resources to achieve its mission. 

Ivy Tech Community College is a good steward of state tax dollars and keeps tuition affordable to best serve its students. Simultaneously, the institution requires sufficient financial resources to achieve its mission. The College’s funding model must align with the funding support and educational objectives of the State of Indiana. Adopting an outcomes-based budgeting model will ensure financial viability. Ivy Tech will diversify revenue sources by attracting and securing external funding and leveraging capital assets to support students and campus communities. 

Goal 7 – Community

Effectively engage with and serve the unique communities. 

Ivy Tech Community College campuses are integral to the communities they serve. In addition to providing education and career opportunities to students, campuses are filled with talented faculty, staff, and students interested in serving its communities. The campuses have facilities, equipment, and gathering spaces. Fully engaging campus personnel and resources as partners and collaborators will help communities deal with their most pressing needs and realize their fullest potential. Ivy Tech is committed to putting more “community” in community college.

Goal 8 – Diversity, Equity and Belonging

Establish a sustainable culture of diversity, equity, and belonging.

Ivy Tech Community College will establish a sustainable culture of diversity, equity, and belonging. It now includes five strategies which were developed with input from faculty, staff, and students from around the state.


Dr. Sue Ellspermann, President

Appointed in May, 2016, Dr. Sue Ellspermann was selected as president of Ivy Tech Community College.  She has more than 30 years of experience in higher education, economic and workforce development, and public service. In January 2018, under Ellspermann’s leadership, Ivy Tech launched its new five-year Strategic Plan, “Our Communities. Your College. Pathways for Student Success and a Stronger Indiana.” The plan’s vision is for Ivy Tech students to earn 50,000 high-quality certifications, certificates, and degrees per year aligned with workforce needs.

The plan aligns with Indiana’s goal to equip 60 percent of the workforce with a high-value, post-secondary degree or credential by 2025. Through achievement of this goal, the College will help increase Hoosier per capita income and support the transformation of the state’s advanced industries economy.

Ellspermann most recently served as Indiana’s 50th Lieutenant Governor from 2013 until March of 2016. She served as president of the Senate and Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, as well as oversaw six agencies including Office of Small Business and Entrepreneurship, Indiana Office of Tourism, Indiana State Department of Agriculture, Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, Office of Community and Rural Affairs, and Office of Defense Development. She was vice chair of the Indiana Career Council tasked to align Indiana’s education and workforce development system to meet the needs of employers. She also served as the co-chair for the Blue Ribbon Panel on Transportation Infrastructure and the Rural Broadband Working Group and led agriculture trade missions to Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and China.

Being named president of the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system marks a return to higher education for Ellspermann. From 2006 to 2012 she served as the founding director of the Center of Applied Research and Economic Development at the University of Southern Indiana (USI). She also has classroom experience teaching at USI, University of Evansville, and University of Louisville.

In 2010 Ellspermann was elected as the State Representative for District 74 (portion of Dubois, Spencer, Perry, and Warrick counties). While in office she served as the Vice-Chair of the Employment, Labor and Pensions Committee, as well as served on the Small Business, Commerce and Economic Development Committee, and the Elections and Reapportionment Committee.

For 20 years prior she owned and operated Ellspermann and Associates, Inc., d/b/a Basadur Applied Creativity, an independent consulting firm licensed in the training and facilitation of Simplex Creative Problem Solving. Early in her career she worked for Frito-Lay, Inc. and Michelin Corporation in manufacturing and operations.

Ellspermann holds a PhD and MS from the University of Louisville in Industrial Engineering. She holds a BS from Purdue University also in Industrial Engineering.

She has published research and reports on various topics including workforce development, innovation, and problem solving.

Ellspermann is married to James Mehling, a former principal at Forest Park Junior-Senior High School. She has a blended family of four daughters and sons-in-law, three grandsons, and two granddaughters.

Academic Programs and Faculty

For information regarding degrees and certificates:


Benefits Overview

  • Health Plan
  • Prescription Plan
  • Vision Plan
  • Disability and Life Insurance
  • Retirement Plans

For more information:

Application & Nomination

Review of applications will begin April 15, 2021, and continue until the position is filled. To apply for this position please click on the Apply button, complete the brief application process, and upload your resume and position-specific cover letter. Nominations for this position may be emailed to Heather J. Larabee at Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.

Visit the Ivy Tech Community College website at

Ivy Tech Community College is an accredited, equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, ethnicity, national origin, marital status, religion, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, age, or veteran status.