Ivy Tech Indianapolis receives grant to strengthen employer partnership(s) with Lilly and connect learners with opportunity

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Strada Education Network selected Ivy Tech Community College – Indianapolis to receive a grant through the Employer and Community College Partnership Challenge. Strada awarded this $400,000 grant as part of an effort to support innovative collaborations across the country between community colleges and employers. Ivy Tech also will participate in opportunities to share insights and learn from other community colleges and employers, through a community of practice.

Ivy Tech Indianapolis will partner with Eli Lilly and Company to strengthen existing apprenticeship programs and training pathways for a variety of positions within the company by prioritizing recruitment and support of Black students through the Skills First Program. The program will target roles that serve as pathways to family-sustaining careers, including positions within human resources, information technology, and research and development, as well as advanced manufacturing, instrument technician, and mechanic positions.

“With the generous support of Strada Education, our partnership with Lilly is strengthened. It will allow the College to incorporate additional professional development, leadership, and technology skills training, and provide students with tailored career coaching,” said Dr. Lorenzo L. Esters, chancellor, Ivy Tech Indianapolis. “We are extremely grateful to Lilly for providing tuition assistance, paid internships, and considering our Ivy Tech students for job openings upon completion of the apprenticeship program,” added Esters.

In addition to Ivy Tech Indianapolis, 10 other colleges received grants:

  • Broward College, Fort Lauderdale, Florida
  • Carl Albert State College, Sallisaw, Oklahoma
  • Community College of Rhode Island, Warwick, Rhode Island 
  • Green River College, Auburn, Washington
  • Honolulu Community College, Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Ivy Tech Community College, Indianapolis, Indiana
  • MiraCosta College, North San Diego County, California
  • Pima County Community College, Tucson, Arizona
  • Salt Lake Community College, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Surry Community College, Dobson, North Carolina
  • West Georgia Technical College, La Grange, Georgia

“At Strada, we believe in investing in innovative solutions that deliver results beyond completion,” Strada Education Network President and CEO Stephen Moret said. “Community colleges have long played a critical role by serving the dynamic needs of both learners and employers in their communities. We are thrilled to have the chance to support college leaders and employers who are coming together to provide timely opportunities for learners.”

Strada Education Network created this grant-making initiative to partner with community colleges to support stronger regional economies and communities. This represents Strada’s first major investment in the community college sector and a recognition that community colleges have a transformative capacity to address changing regional workforce needs. The initiative aims to improve employment and socioeconomic outcomes for students who historically have faced significant barriers to economic mobility.

“Community colleges are engines of opportunity with unique insight into local dynamics and needs,” Strada Impact President Ruth V. Watkins said. “We’re honored to both support and learn from these programs as we work to align measures of success beyond completion with the things that matter most to learners: career mobility and earning potential, meaningful work and the chance to contribute to their communities.”

Strada Education Network is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to helping people take advantage of education and training after high school that helps them secure a good job, do meaningful work, contribute to their communities, and lead a fulfilling life. Strada helps students succeed beyond completion of a certificate or degree through its research, charitable grants, and social impact investments, as well as through the work of Strada-supported nonprofit organizations, CAEL, Education at Work, InsideTrack, and Roadtrip Nation, which directly serve learners and workers. Learn more at stradaeducation.org.

About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College is Indiana’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Ivy Tech has campuses throughout Indiana and serves thousands of students annually online. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering associate degrees, short-term certificate programs, industry certifications, and training that aligns with the needs of the community. The College provides a seamless transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana, as well as out of state, for a more affordable route to a bachelor’s degree.

Ivy Tech Indianapolis is the College’s largest service area, serving more than 28,000 students each year in Marion, Boone, and Hendricks counties. For more information about this location, visit IvyTech.edu/Indianapolis. Follow Ivy Tech on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn for the most up-to-date information.

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