Indiana University to open new research institute


BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (WEHT) Indiana University has announced plans to open a new research institute thanks to a generous donation from the owners of the Indianapolis Colts.

The Irsay Family Research Institute will be located on the IU campus in Bloomington on a newly-renovated space in Morrison Hall. Its focus will be on:

  • Providing direct support and development of research and researchers interested in healthcare
  • Producing more graduates trained to work in mental health
  • Developing better local and national policies regarding mental health and the stigma surrounding it.
  • Conducting broader interdisciplinary research on sociomedical sciences to better coordinate campus-wide efforts in these fields.

“We are deeply grateful to the Irsay family and the Colts for this generous gift which will help IU continue to conduct evidence-based research and training on stigma around mental health and other medical issues,” said IU President Pamela Whitten. “We look forward to our partnership with the Colts and to the continued ground-breaking work of IU researchers at the Irsay Family Research Institute.”

The Institute and related programs will be led by IU’s Bernice Pescosolido, Distinguished Professor of Sociology at the IU Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences and director of IU’s Indiana Consortium for Mental Health Services Research.

With her colleagues, Pescosolido has developed and led the National Stigma Studies over the past 25 years. At IU, she led the Bring Change to Mind national pilot study to increase mental health awareness and reduce stigma on college campuses.

“We are honored that the Indianapolis Colts have chosen Indiana University to develop and carry out the research needed to build the scientific foundation for ending the stigma of mental illness and to work together to confront discrimination that other medical problems face,” Pescosolido said. “As the first professional sports franchise to step out front to confront stigma of mental illness, the Colts display the courage and vision to fight prejudice in health and health care. We are proud to partner with our Indiana home team to do the science to target the stigma that deprives individuals of their health and dignity as they battle mental health and addiction.”

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