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Published: 6/16/2006

Program aims to spur innovation at universities

BY IGNAZIO MESSINA
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Beginning next month, Ohio's research universities, which include the University of Toledo and Bowling Green State University, are expected to reallocate 1.5 percent of the state funding they each receive for doctoral programs offered on their campuses.

Members of the Ohio Board of Regents were briefed on the upcoming launch of the state's Economic Growth Challenge/Innovation Incentive funding program at their monthly meeting yesterday at Xavier University in Cincinnati.

The state will match those qualifying reallocated funds through the Economic Growth Challenge/Innovation Incentive Program.

The reallocation will be every year for 10 years for a total of 15 percent.

The 10 public universities involved in the Innovation Incentive Initiative are the University of Akron, BGSU, University of Cincinnati, Cleveland State University, Kent State University, Miami University, Ohio State University, Ohio University, UT, and Wright State University. The private universities involved are Case Western Reserve University and the University of Dayton.

"The University of Toledo has picked two very important focus areas," said Harry Andrist, director of research and graduate programs for the Ohio Board of Regents. "One area is translational medicine, which refers to ways to quickly move information from the medical research laboratory to bedside clinical applications."

The second area UT has chosen is in alternative energy.

UT is collaborating with BGSU on alternative energy research relating to solar cell technologies and hybrid electric vehicles.

"Bowling Green has selected a single area of investment, molecular photonics, which explores principles governing the interaction of light with matter," Mr. Andrist said.

In other business, the board of regents unanimously approved a nursing program to begin in August at Terra Community College.

Marsha Bordner, Terra Community College president, said the program still needs to be approved by the Ohio Board of Nursing.

Earlier this month, the Owens Community College board of trustees objected to the program and asked the Fremont school to collaborate rather than compete. Ms. Bordner said staff members from both schools met last week.

"We were able to find an agreement that we will work together on clinical sites in the future," she said. "I was [also] offered the use of certain pieces of equipment that they have for our students at their campus."

Contact Ignazio Messina at:

imessina@theblade.com

or 419-724-6171.



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