Kent State to receive state funding for internship programs

Katie Nix

Kent State was selected by the Ohio Board of Regents to receive $724,553 of state funding to aid students involved in internships and co-op programs that are connected to key industries for growth in Ohio.

“Kent State University was competitively selected to receive an award for the Ohio Means Internships and Co-ops program for its efforts to strengthen existing and create new work-integrated learning programs throughout its eight campuses,” said Ohio Board of Regents Chancellor Jim Petro.

Kent State, among other universities, had to submit a proposal detailing how learning through experience and career opportunities will be improved.

“We are working with NOCHE, which stands for Northeast Ohio Council on Higher Education, and businesses, especially those which have not had interns in the past, to help the businesses learn how to maximize the benefit of an internship for a student and helping to find internships in smaller businesses in northeast Ohio,” said Austin Melton, computer science and mathematics professor, who will be coordinating the program along with Associate Provost Dr. Stephane Booth.

Petro said this benefits both the students, who receive experience, credit and wages, and the businesses in key industries who will have access to a wider variety of quality talent to meet various workforce needs.

Companies engaging in the program include: Akron Polymer Systems, AlphaMicron, Assurance Investment Management, AtNetPlus, Crystal Diagnostics, Echogen Power Systems, Explorys, First Energy Corp., GraphSQL, Kent Displays, Melin Tool Company, Price Builders & Developers, Summa Health System, Telerik, Inc., The Timken Company, Tribute, Inc. and True Wealth Advisors.

In addition to the $724,553 of state funding, 100 percent of the funds must be matched by private sources totaling up to $1.5 million in funding for the program.

“They’ve taken a relatively small amount of money and leveraged it very effectively,” said Grant McGimpsey, Kent State vice president for research, in a university news release from Dec. 14, 2012. “It will have a great impact.”

The industries that will help match the funds include advanced manufacturing, aerospace and aviation, biohealth, energy, financial services, information technology and polymers, according to a university news release from Dec. 14, 2012.

“Once the money is released from the state, then these internships can begin to be advertised, and students may apply for these positions,” Melton said.

Contact Katie Nix at [email protected].