updated: 10/20/2008 1:25:10 PM

Lilly Grant to Provide Internships at Purdue

InsideINdianaBusiness.com Report

A $1.75 million matching grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. to Purdue University will support internship and entrepreneurship programs to address the brain drain and create the Collegiate Entrepreneurship Opportunities program. The grant requires a dollar-for-dollar match from Purdue. The Interns for Indiana program will expand from 37 internships to 100 internships by 2011-12. The new Collegiate Entrepreneurship Opportunities program will connect events and organizations to increase student awareness of an array of resources and job opportunities available.

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Press Release

October 20, 2008


WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - A $1.75 million matching grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. to Purdue University will support internship and entrepreneurship programs to address brain drain and create the Collegiate Entrepreneurship Opportunities program.
The sustaining grant to the Discovery Learning Center comes from the Endowment's Initiative to Promote Opportunities through Educational Collaborations. The grant requires Purdue to match it dollar-for-dollar. In addition to financing the new program, funding will support Purdue's existing Interns for Indiana program, administered by the Discovery Learning Center, and the Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation program, administered by the Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship.


"Lilly Endowment again is making a significant investment in our students and our state," said Purdue President France A. Córdova. "The grant will enhance an entrepreneurial curriculum for our students and increase their awareness of opportunities in small and mid-size companies. The internship program also is reaping returns for our state. Seventy percent of our graduates who took part in Interns for Indiana remain in the state after graduation."

Interns for Indiana places Purdue students from its West Lafayette, Calumet, North Central and Fort Wayne campuses in internships with Indiana high-tech startup businesses during the summer session. The West Lafayette campus also offers an academic-year program. More than 133 companies have provided internship opportunities for Purdue students since 2004.

"Many of our students indicate that they are unaware, or under-aware, of job opportunities in small to mid-size companies," said Gabriela C. Weaver, interim director of the Discovery Learning Center. "At the same time, these companies often lament a lack of access to high-quality students. This program addresses both of these issues by expanding awareness with a broad range of opportunities."

Thanks to the grant, the Interns for Indiana program will expand from 37 internships during the 2007-08 year to 100 internships by 2011-12, the fourth year of the grant.

Over that same period, key components of a plan to sustain the program will be put in place and will include contributions toward intern stipends from participating companies and a corporate affiliates board.

The Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation program will use its funding to enhance curriculum open to all undergraduate students at Purdue. The program was created to inspire and teach students in all disciplines about entrepreneurship and innovation in their chosen field, whether it is with startups or large corporations. Through a series of five three-credit courses and related experimental programs, students learn the theory and practice related to starting and running new ventures.

The new Collegiate Entrepreneurship Opportunities program will connect events, organizations and other forms of support to increase student awareness of an array of resources and job opportunities available to them.

Discovery Park, where the Discovery Learning Center is located, was launched in 2001 by more than $26 million in grants from Lilly Endowment, which, to date, has invested more than $55 million in the park.

Sara B. Cobb, vice president for education at Lilly Endowment, said, "We are pleased to be able to support the ongoing programs and create this new one that will complement the others so well. This grant reflects our commitment to support both education and the economic vitality of our state."

Lilly Endowment is an Indianapolis-based, private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by three members of the Lilly family through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly and Co. In keeping with the wishes of the three founders, Lilly Endowment exists to support the causes of religion, education and community development. The Endowment affords special emphasis to projects that benefit young people and promote leadership education and financial self-sufficiency in the nonprofit, charitable sector.

The Discovery Learning Center is one of 11 interdisciplinary research centers in Purdue's Discovery Park. The mission of the center is to advance research that revolutionizes learning in the STEM disciplines (science, technology, engineering and math). Through externally funded research projects, innovative programs and collaborative partnerships, the center is committed to redesigning educational practices and creating innovative learning environments that have immediate impacts and nurture lifelong learning for students and citizens of a global community.

The Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship, also located in Discovery Park, is Purdue's interdisciplinary hub for entrepreneurship. Through its sponsored initiatives, including the Certificate in Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Technology Realization Program, Entrepreneurial Leadership Academy, and Business Plan Competitions, the center aims to stimulate entrepreneurship in the Purdue community and serve as a resource for the general public.

Source: Purdue University




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