There’s no “accounting” for everything Michelle Simmons has contributed to Ivy Tech and its students in her 30 years at the College. Now, as she retires effective Nov. 3, she wants to “account” for even more. Her many family and friends are invited to join her in continuing her legacy by contributing to her “Accounting for Your Future” Scholarship at Ivy Tech Kokomo.
The Michelle Simmons “Accounting for Your Future” Endowed Scholarship is designed to support students in the Accounting program in Ivy Tech’s Kokomo Service Area. Michelle began her professional life in Accounting, building on a major in the subject on the way to her bachelor’s degree in Business at Indiana University Kokomo. She spent eight years accounting in the manufacturing sector before bringing her business skills to Ivy Tech in 1993 as Business Office Director at the College’s Kokomo Campus.
From that beginning, Michelle’s career grew along with Indiana’s community college. Over 30 years, Michelle took on ever-expanding roles with the College, becoming the Executive Director of Workforce and Economic Development, then the Executive Director of Finance, the Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs, Campus President, and then Vice President for Operations for Northern Campuses before assuming her current role as Vice President for Internal Relations for the College statewide.
Over the years, her work has helped shape the Kokomo Service Area. She developed and expanded apprenticeship and customized training programs, professional and personal courses, and workforce certification services. She had fiscal responsibility for the building project of the Logansport site. She helped the Kokomo campus move and thrive after an EF-3 tornado touched down in Kokomo during the first week of Fall 2016, devastating the Health Sciences facility. She advocated and helped secure state appropriations for a $43 million renovation and construction project of the Kokomo campus. At the state level, she helped shape the 2017 College restructure and has supported and responded to the day-to-day operational management of the 19 campuses to ensure equitable student experiences and workforce alignment.
Michelle has served on multiple community boards and college committees throughout her career, with intentional focus on strategy. She attributes her years of success to embracing change, those who mentored and gave her opportunities for professional growth, working with amazing colleagues across the state, and an organizational mission that she fell in love with on day one, and is still passionate about, 30 years later.
Please join us in saluting Michelle and her years of service, mentorship, and friendship through a donation to her “Accounting for Your Future” scholarship.