BGSU gains major state grant for co-ops and internships


BOWLING GREEN, O.— At least 67 new employment opportunities in key JobsOhio industries will be created for students of Bowling Green State University, thanks to a combined investment of $1.58 million from the Ohio Board of Regents, several businesses with operations or interests in Ohio, and the BGSU Foundation. Inc.

The University expects to receive more than $650,000 based on matching funds committed by employer partners and the BGSU Foundation for its BGSU Means Internships and Co-ops initiative.

The state portion of the funding originates from casino license fees. The funding amounts designated for BGSU and other universities and community colleges in Ohio are pending approval by the state’s Controlling Board at its Jan. 14 meeting.

“The companies that are partnering us with in this project have a history of hiring BGSU co-ops and internships, so their expanded commitment is really an endorsement of the excellence of our students,” said Dr. Joseph Frizado, vice provost for academic operations and assessment.

Internships and co-ops often lead to full-time employment after graduation, Frizado added. “If we can get our students’ foot in the door, quite often companies are impressed with our students and their capabilities. So, when the economy improves, we hope companies will further expand co-op and internship opportunities for BGSU students.”

Most importantly, the grant will help the University to strengthen existing partnerships and create new ones, said Albert N. Colom, vice president for enrollment management.

“Hands-on work experience, especially if it’s directly related to a student’s academic program, creates an advantage for BGSU students,” Colom said. “BGSU students deserve every opportunity to leverage what they have learned in the classroom to increase their employability upon graduation.”

Paid internships and co-op opportunities for BGSU students will be created in five of the industries targeted by JobsOhio: advanced manufacturing, automotive, biohealth, energy, and information technology and services.

Partner companies have committed to paying the cost of training and mentoring BGSU students, and to sharing the cost of student salaries with the state of Ohio. For example, Whirlpool Corp.’s Clyde Division will create five new co-op positions for BGSU supply chain management students, and Lake Erie Electric of Bowling Green/Toledo will create 11 new co-ops.

Along with Lake Erie Electric and Whirlpool, partner companies include: Advanced Computer Connections Inc. of Norwalk; Cedar Fair Entertainment Co. of Sandusky; Eaton Corp. of Willoughby Hills; Firelands Regional Medical Center of Sandusky; Fisher-Titus Medical Center of Norwalk; FutureGreen, LLC of Sandusky; Grathwol Automation of Sandusky, InteroTech LLC of Cleveland; Macy’s Systems and Technology of Lorain; nPario of Palo Alto, Calif.; Pacer International of Dublin; and Peak Electric and SSOE Group, both of Toledo.

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(Posted December 14, 2012 )