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Federal Grant Creates More Internships At Wright Patterson

Take an already successful college internship program, multiply its funding by 4, and throw in the research taking place at Wright Patterson Air Force Base, and what do you get?

"When you think about it we're bringing in $14 million in new revenue to our region through this program," says Sean Creighton, executive director of the Southwestern Ohio Council for Education.

The council just landed a multi-year contract through the Department of Defense that is going to greatly expand its current program. Creighton says over the course of the 5 years, that could mean up to 750 internships.

"We use the word internship because they're students. There are parameters that you can only work 20 hours a week during the academic year. But these are jobs. They are competitively paid to do research at the Air Force Base," says Creighton.

The programs focus have a science, technology, engineering and math focus. Creighton says it also falls in line with statewide economic development goals by attracting and keeping young talent in the area. The group in charge of higher education in the state-the Ohio Board of Regent's-says these types of partnerships are crucial to its plan for improving colleges and universities and building Ohio's economy in the future.