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State of Ohio Awards RAPIDS Grant to CSU

Students at Cleveland State University, Cuyahoga Community College, and Lorain County Community College will be able to enhance their education and job preparedness in several fields thanks to funding approved by the state Controlling Board to purchase state-of-the-art equipment.

Through partnerships with area businesses and higher education stakeholders, the campuses were able to secure funding as follows: Cleveland State, $238,441; Tri-C, $239,437; and Lorain, $238,788. Governor John Kasich and the legislature targeted $8 million in the state capital budget to assist Ohio’s public universities, community colleges, and career technical centers in providing the most up-to-date education possible in an effort to provide a skilled workforce for in-demand jobs.

The latest round of funding, which totals $5.3 million, will allow for the purchase of equipment in the fields of information technology, advanced manufacturing, healthcare, additive manufacturing, cloud manufacturing, smart business automation, and cybersecurity. The purchases are funded by the Ohio Department of Higher Education’s (ODHE) Regionally Aligned Priorities in Delivering Skills (RAPIDS) program.

Local business partners said the funding will help prepare students for in-demand jobs in the region.

“The equipment being requested by Cleveland State University meets our expectations and mirrors the equipment being used in, or planned for possible use in, our facilities,” said Mary Stilphen, senior director, Cleveland Clinic Rehabilitation and Sports Therapy. “The integration of this equipment into the PT, OT, and SLP programs will produce graduates with the skill sets we are seeking.”

“The Ohio Department of Higher Education’s support for training equipment for in-demand occupations is critical for us to remain competitive in the rapidly advancing field of microelectronics,” said Brett Crane, printed circuit board assembly lead for Bird Technologies Group.

ODHE Chancellor John Carey said the RAPIDS program has helped different regions in Ohio address their most pressing workforce needs while preparing traditional and nontraditional students for successful careers.

“When our schools collaborate to secure funding through the RAPIDS program, it gives students more opportunities to succeed while strengthening regional businesses and Ohio’s economy. It’s a win-win,” Chancellor Carey said.