Skip to main content

Exceptional women are making a difference across IU and the world


Women have contributed enormously to Indiana University’s success over the past two hundred years. What began with pioneers like Sarah Parke Morrison—the first woman to be admitted as an IU student in 1867 and later our first female faculty member—led to today, where women now make up 56% of our student body. During Women’s History Month and on the eve of International Women’s Day, we celebrate the many contributions of IU women.

Distinguished Professor of Sociology Dr. Bernice Pescosolido in the College of Arts and Sciences is internationally renowned for her work on mental health and stigma. Among many roles, she serves as director of IU’s new Irsay Institute, where researchers target the social roots of health and healthcare, particularly the stigma surrounding mental illness and other health issues such as HIV, epilepsy, cancer, dementia, and addiction. Funded through a $3 million gift from the Jim Irsay family, the Irsay Institute officially kicks off this week with an engaging series of events.
Dr. Hannah Maxey, associate professor of family medicine and director of the Bowen Center for Health Workforce Research and Policy in the IU School of Medicine, will give expert testimony this week at a U.S. Senate Special Committee on Aging hearing. A key partner between IU and the state of Indiana, the Bowen Center collaborates with a broad range of stakeholders to help analyze complex health workforce issues and inform related policy and programming to improve Hoosiers' health and well-being. 
Lastly, Kadidiatou Diallo, a health services management student in the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health at IUPUI, is working to address health disparities locally and worldwide. An inaugural recipient of the highly competitive Obama-Chesky Voyager Scholarship for Public Service, she plans to utilize travel stipends to go to west Africa this summer to alleviate medical care inequality and pursue a career in public service.
These are just three of the many remarkable women whose unwavering dedication to their communities, students, patients, and beyond continues to shape IU as a world-class institution and improve quality of life for individuals across the globe.


Pamela Whitten

Indiana University

See the latest presidential news