Batesville Herald Tribune

Universities partner

Posted: November 3, 2008

Dear Editor:

Hoosiers are accustomed to seeing perennial adversaries Indiana University and Purdue University battle on the gridiron and on the basketball court. However, they may not be as well versed on more collaborative efforts between the two educational institutions. One such illustration included the Indiana Innovation Alliance, which is an unprecedented union between PU and IU with the objective of growing Indiana's economy. The presidents of the two universities, IU’s Michael McRobbie and PU’s France Córdova, are advocating for an additional $15 million a year, in addition to $20 million already allocated, to invest in developing the state's research partnership, called the Indiana Innovation Alliance.

A fair retort might be why spend more state resources in these areas amid a very challenging economic climate? As an associate of a medical technology company based in Batesville, I view this initiative as very positive because it has tremendous potential to translate into more jobs in Indiana's health care sector; more outside investments for Indiana research and development; more health and life sciences solutions, inventions and companies; more health care professionals statewide; more Indiana researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs; and more healthy Indiana citizens.

Bottom line, in Indiana's competition for jobs, economic development and the advancement of its life sciences industry, PU and IU are on the same team. Both are working together to build a stronger Indiana and are deserving of the General Assembly's full support.

— Thomas Jeffers, Hill-Rom vice president of government affairs