Our Staff

Kurt D. Dykstra

Kurt D. Dykstra

President & CEO

Laura Bridges

Laura Bridges

Vice President and Chief Operating Officer

Jake Burns

Jake Burns

Director of Policy & Research

Jodie Ferise

Jodie Ferise

Vice President & General Counsel

Katie Goodrich

Katie Goodrich

Director of Scholarships & Grants

Katie Hunger

Katie Hunger

Scholarship & Grants Associate

Kelly Smith

Kelly Smith

Executive Assistant to the President

Kevin Watson

Kevin Watson

Chief Financial Officer

Jen Zentz

Jen Zentz

Director of Strategic Communications

Kurt Dyskstra

Kurt D. Dykstra

Kurt D. Dykstra is the president and CEO of the Independent Colleges of Indiana, a role he assumed in July 2022. In this capacity, Dykstra has the overall responsibility of, among other items, leading the organization, working with its Board of Directors, and interfacing with a wide array of partners and organizational constituents to enhance ICI’s mission of advancing independent higher education as a strong educational option for students—and a strong economic force in the State of Indiana.

Learn more about Kurt here.

317-236-6090

 

Laura Bridges

Laura’s role at ICI is helping ICI members work together through shared purchasing initiatives, training and education opportunities, or networking. She is always looking for new and different, yet highly effective, ways for members to collaborate. She also works closely with the ICI Presidents Council to provide ICI members valuable engagement with the corporate sector.

You should contact Laura if you are on staff at a member colleges or are a potential corporate partner interested in collaborative initiatives for ICI institutions.

317-236-6084

Jake Burns headshot

Jake Burns

Jake’s role at ICI includes staying updated on Indiana higher education policy, fielding external data requests about Indiana private higher education, and coordinating the Admissions Tracker project, which provides admissions staff members with statewide trends. He also undertakes research on ICI colleges and universities to assist in telling the sector’s story.

You should contact Jake if you have a data-related question about the Independent Colleges of Indiana.

317-236-6085

Jodie Ferise, JD

Jodie’s role at ICI is to work with ICI campus leaders to develop and coordinate the strategy and advocacy with legislators and policy makers about the benefits and importance of private higher education in Indiana. She serves as ICI’s attorney on all legal matters and manager of all legal counsel ICI retains. She also oversees training programs for our campuses, including the ICI Leadership Academy.

You should contact Jodie if you want to find out how ICI might assist you with legal or policy issues related to higher education at ICI institutions.

317-690-1149

Jodie Ferise Headshot
Katie Goodrich headshot

Katie Goodrich

Katie’s primary role at ICI is directing the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program (LECSP). She works with the community foundations in Indiana’s 92 counties as well as both public and private colleges to administer the scholarship.

You should contact Katie if you have questions about the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program.

317-684-4297

Katie Hunger

Katie’s primary role involves supporting ICI administered scholarship and grants. She also works closely with the Lilly Scholars Network (LSN) and the LSN Advisory Council. The Lilly Scholars Network is an organization committed to connecting recipients of the Lilly Endowment Community Scholarship Program to one another and to opportunities and resources for them to give back to their communities.

You should contact Katie if you have questions about the Lilly Scholars Network or ICI administered scholarships and grants.

317-684-4293

 

Katie Hunger

Kelly Smith

Kelly’s role at ICI is supporting the president of ICI. She assists with communication and calendar coordination between the ICI president and the presidents at ICI’s member colleges. She also plans the ICI board meetings and other events, such as Executive Assistant Day – a day of appreciation of the assistants to the presidents of our members.

You should contact Kelly if you would like to meet with ICI President David Wantz.

317-236-6090

Kevin Watson

Kevin’s role as ICI’s CFO is ensuring that ICI’s financial records are protected and maintained in compliance with company policies. He oversees account activity, balance sheet management, payroll disbursements, and retirement contributions. He manages day-to-day asset management and handles the tuition disbursement of the LECSP for the benefit of our Lilly Endowment Community Scholars.  

You should contact Kevin if you have questions about an invoice received from ICI or need information on the whereabouts of a payment.

317-684-4292

Kevin Watson
Jen Zentz headshot

Jen Zentz

Jen’s role at ICI is communicating with many of ICI’s various audiences, especially school counselors and their students. She shares information about Indiana’s private colleges by planning events like Private College Week and by developing resources like ICI GradFacts. She also works with all ICI institutions to administer the Realizing the Dream scholarship program funded by the Lilly Endowment Inc. 

You should contact Jen if you are a high school student, parent of a student, or counselor looking for information about going to college.

317-236-6082