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Page last updated on January 31, 2024 at 11:55 am


The Housing and Neighborhood Development (HAND) Department developed the City of Bloomington Residents Academy in 1999 to encourage civic engagement and to educate residents about City government. Participants will learn about the challenges faced by City government as it balances budget limitations with community goals and service needs. Sessions will also cover topics such as day-to-day operations, the structure and function of City departments, the role of City Council, resident involvement in boards and commissions, innovative approaches to problem solving, and goals for the future. 

In Residents Academy you will be introduced to City of Bloomington departments and programs, including:

  • Office of the Mayor
  • City Council and Clerk's Offices
  • Public Works
  • Parks and Recreation
  • Planning and Transportation
  • Housing and Neighborhood Development
  • Police Department
  • Fire Department
  • Utilities
  • Community and Family Resources
  • Controller's Office
  • Bloomington Transit
  • Information and Technology Services
  • Economic and Sustainable Development


Applying for the 2024 Residents Academy  

The electronic application form is available year-round, and you may complete it at any time. You will receive an email confirmation that your application has been received. 


Applicants must be

  • At least 18 years of age, OR a member of the NextGen Advocacy Program, a student-led group that educates students from Bloomington high schools on the workings, importance, and logistics of local City Government.
  • A resident of the City of Bloomington, 
  • Willing to commit to one evening per week for 10 weeks to participate in the academy.


Applications are due by midnight on Monday, July 8, 2024. Applicants will be notified of acceptance by July 31, 2023. If space allows, residents who reside outside the Bloomington city limits will be considered for participation. There is no cost to participants.

To apply online, please use the link below. To request a paper application please contact Angela Van Rooy at (812)-349-3505 or



The Residents Academy is held every autumn from late-August to late-October. The 2024 schedule will be posted in the coming weeks.


2023 Schedule

Classes will be held every Thursday, August 24 through October 26 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.


Week 1: Thursday, August 24

  • Welcome and Introductions
  • Office of Innovation presentation


Week 2: Thursday, August 31

  • Housing and Neighborhood Development (HAND) Department historic neighborhood walking tour


Week 3: Thursday, September 7

  • Parks & Recreation Department Switchyard Park tour


Week 4: Thursday, September 14

  • Bloomington Fire Department presentation & demonstration


Week 5: Thursday, September 21

  • Utilities tour of Monroe Water Treatment Plant


Week 6: Thursday, September 28

  • Electric bus tour of:
    • Public Works Department facilities
    • Bloomington Transit facilities


Week 7: Thursday, October 5

  • Bloomington Police Department presentation


Week 8: Thursday, October 12

  • Community & Family Resources presentation
  • Information & Technology Services presentation
  • Controller’s Office presentation


Week 9: Thursday, October 19

  • Economic & Sustainable Development Department tour of The Mill
  • Planning & Transportation Department presentation
  • Engineering Department presentation


Week 10: Thursday, October 26

  • City Council presentation
  • City Clerk presentation
  • Mayor's Office presentation
  • Awarding of certificates and class picture


Click here for details about each session