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Ball Venture Fund 2015

Thursday, June 11, 2015   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Linda Meador
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Contact: Mary Ellen Hamer, Independent Colleges of Indiana (317) 236-6090


ICI Announces 2015 Winners of Ball Brothers Foundation Venture Fund Grants


INDIANAPOLIS, June 2, 2015 – Four Indiana independent colleges are the winners of the 2015 Ball Brothers Foundation Venture Fund competitive grant program: Saint Joseph’s College, University of Evansville, University of Saint Francis, and Wabash College. The four will share $78,000 in seed funding for initiatives to stimulate creativity and innovation while fostering competition and collaboration among Indiana 31 private, nonprofit campuses.

Established by the Ball Brothers Foundation (Muncie) and administered by ICI, the Ball Brothers Foundation Venture Fund has disbursed over $1,000,000 for 49 innovative initiatives on ICI campuses over the past 17 years. The 2015 recipients were chosen from a field of 36 proposals.


  • Saint Joseph’s College (Rensselaer): “Community-Based Aquaponics: A Model for Local Food Production, Undergraduate Research, and Next Generation Aquapreneurs”

SJC’s $21,000 award will allow students to use an innovative food production system, providing hands-on learning and research experience. Students will engage with successful entrepreneurs and examine the economic, social and environmental impacts of a community-based aquaponics model.


  • University of Evansville (Evansville): “Neuromarketing Research Center”

UE’s $22,000 award will allow undergraduates to work with innovative tools and techniques, building professional confidence while producing results for actual companies. Clients will gain an advantage in the marketplace by receiving access to technologies on the forefront of marketing and neuroscience to develop insight into what drives their customers.


  • University of Saint Francis (Fort Wayne): “Nursing Students ‘Go Pro!’”

USF’s $13,000 will be used to meet three major goals: 1) Engage nursing students learning to become professional healthcare providers, 2) Enhance faculty development in simulation pedagogy, and 3) Encourage student-led learning endeavors throughout Indiana.


  • Wabash College (Crawfordsville): “Gaining STEAM: Establishing a Campus 3D Printing and Fabrication Center to Test Cross-Disciplinary Collaboration and Innovation in the Liberal Arts”

Wabash’s $22,000 will assist the development of first-year courses in design and fabrication; collaborative cross-disciplinary projects bridging courses in the arts and sciences; 3D printing and fabrication-based undergraduate research internships; and entrepreneurial collaborations with local industry.


The winners were selected by an independent panel of judges, including a representative from the Ball Brothers Foundation, along with those from the education, construction, manufacturing, and financial communities.


Independent Colleges of Indiana serves as the collective voice for the state’s 31 private, nonprofit colleges and universitiesICI member institutions enroll some 100,000 students (approximately 17 percent of all undergraduates statewide) and annually produce 32 percent of all bachelor’s degrees in Indiana. Information about ICI is available at