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UIndy Receives Grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. for Career-Exploration Summer Camp

The University of Indianapolis announced today that it has received a grant of $688,938 from Lilly Endowment Inc. through its initiative, Indiana Youth Programs on Campus. The grant will help the University launch a week-long residential summer camp with the aim of expanding already existing educational programming for Hoosier youth who might not yet realize the benefits of higher education or don’t see a place for themselves within higher education.

The initiative is designed to help Indiana colleges and universities to engage youth, ages 5 to 18, in high-quality on-campus enrichment programs that can help young people envision a future for themselves in college.

For one week in the summer, students in grades eight through ten will stay on the University’s campus where they will receive programming geared toward career exploration, showing the possibilities that higher ed can bring in five key industry areas: healthcare, STEM, education, business, and the arts & humanities. A corporate partner for each pillar will present relevant career information, and students will visit campus locations corresponding with UIndy majors related to the careers. In some cases, students may take field trips to employer partner locations for tours when appropriate. Each student will also participate in a number of career exploration and college readiness activities.

“We welcome any opportunity to bring Hoosier youth to our campus,” said University of Indianapolis Interim President Phil Terry. “As we all aim to increase the higher education attainment rate within the state, it is critically important to reach our young people and demonstrate both the value of higher education as well as remove barriers of entry to those populations who are traditionally underrepresented in the higher ed landscape.”

“We are incredibly grateful to Lilly Endowment for its generous support of these goals both at UIndy and throughout the state,” added Terry.

Lilly Endowment launched the initiative, in part, to respond to the significant decrease in the number of Hoosiers pursuing higher education degrees. In 2015, 65 percent of Indiana high school graduates were going straight to college. The college going rate has dropped steadily since. In 2020, only 53 percent of Hoosiers were attending college the year after high school. Goals for the initiative include increasing the number of Indiana youth who obtain valuable postsecondary degrees and credentials and to help schools strengthen how they recruit students, especially students who have been traditionally underserved by higher education institutions.

About the University of Indianapolis

The University of Indianapolis, founded in 1902, is a private university located just a few minutes from downtown Indianapolis. The University is ranked among the top National Universities by U.S. News and World Report, with a diverse enrollment of nearly 5,400 undergraduate, graduate and continuing education students. The University offers a wide variety of study areas, including 100+ undergraduate degrees, more than 40 master’s degree programs and five doctoral programs. The University of Indianapolis impacts its community by living its motto, “Education for Service.” Learn more:

About Lilly Endowment Inc.

Lilly Endowment Inc. is an Indianapolis-based,private philanthropic foundation created in 1937 by J.K. Lilly Sr. and sons J.K. Jr. and Eli through gifts of stock in their pharmaceutical business, Eli Lilly and Company. While those gifts remain the financial bedrock of the Endowment, the Endowment is a separate entity from the company, with a distinct governing board, staff and location. In keeping with the founders’ wishes, the Endowment supports the causes of community development, education and religion and maintains a special commitment to its hometown, Indianapolis, and home state, Indiana.