INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana University and Purdue University are breaking up, the schools announced Friday.
In what amounts to an amicable divorce, the state's flagship universities say they will split Indiana University, Purdue University — Indianapolis into two separate universities that will share the same Downtown campus.
Leaders of both schools say dissolving their 52-year Indianapolis partnership will benefit the institutions, students and broader community.
"This new vision will enable the number of Purdue's STEM graduates to grow and also provide more opportunities to our students and faculty both in Indianapolis and in West Lafayette," Purdue President Mitch Daniels said in a statement.
"Our state and its largest city require a world-class, high-technology research presence of the quality Purdue represents."
IU President Pam Whitten called the change "an historic moment."
"We are building on IUPUI's more than 50 years of accomplishment to propel us into becoming one of the preeminent urban research universities in this country," Whitten said in a statement.
"In addition to expanding our science and technology programs, we plan to grow across the board, create more opportunities for students, and become even more deeply integrated with the Indianapolis community through close relationships with local businesses, nonprofits, sports organizations, and more."
According to a news release, IU will keep its School of Medicine and other health science-related schools and take over most of the School of Science. It will expand its Luddy School of Informatics, Computing and Engineering by launching new computer science programs in Indianapolis.
Purdue will take over IU's former Department of Computer Science and maintains control of the schools of engineering, computer science and technology as a fully integrated expansion of Purdue West Lafayette.
"The new structure will allow Purdue to grow engineering, technology and computer science enrollments in Indianapolis, and create exciting opportunities for current West Lafayette students to "study away" in Indianapolis while pursuing internship or cooperative work opportunities with Indianapolis companies," according to the news release.
A biosciences engineer institute is also in the process of being created to bring together the engineering program at Purdue with IU's health sciences program.
"We view this as an opportunity, frankly, to make a statement to the whole country that Indiana is the place to come to get training, to start a company or to hire people in the fields of biohealth engineering," Whitten said.
Whitten says IU, which currently has responsibility of the overall campus, will retain athletics as well. The teams will remain in the Horizon League.
Daniels says he believes academics and enrollment numbers will improve.
Contact WRTV reporter Vic Ryckaert at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter: @vicryc.