INDIANAPOLIS (UIndy) – The University of Indianapolis President Beverley Pitts announced Oct. 3 that she will retire at the end of the 2011-12 academic year, ending seven years at the helm of Indiana’s third-largest private college, which is United Methodist-related.

Pitts informed the university’s Board of Trustees of her decision Oct. 1. Since then, she sent email messages to faculty, staff and students, calling her tenure at UIndy “one of the most rewarding experiences of my life,” but saying, “The timing is right for new leadership.” She looks forward to devoting more time to travel and writing.

The university recently wrapped up a successful six-year strategic plan that expanded experiences, programs and facilities for students while extending UIndy’s impact in the community, noted Board Chair Robert Wingerter.

“Dr. Pitts has done an outstanding job,” he said. “She has joined a line of strong presidents who have moved the university forward in academic standing and reputation.”

As UIndy’s eighth president, Pitts has emphasized managed growth in enrollment and a focus on retention through more robust first-year experiences and early intervention strategies. To enhance the residential experience for students, the university has expanded Schwitzer Student Center, erected an athletics and recreation facility, and opened a new residence hall. Ground will be broken this fall on a seventh residence hall.

Pitts has implemented promotion and tenure incentives and elevated faculty salaries. Building on groundwork laid by her predecessors, she has extended linkages between the university and the city, and maintained the university’s physical presence in historic Fountain Square. Her decision to adopt “UIndy” as the university’s official nickname, discarding “U of I,” reinforced the institution’s connection and commitment to its hometown, while setting it apart from other schools with similar initials.

For more information, visit www.uindy.edu