University Economic Development Association


BGSU Hometown Internship Program

Award Category: Talent
Project Site: BGSU Hometown Internship Program
Submitted By: Bowling Green State University
Contact: Russell W. Mills, 419.372.9183

Case Study

As part of the Ohio Department of Higher Education’s “Ohio Means Internships and Co-ops” (OMIC) program, the Center for Regional Development (CRD) at Bowling Green State University (BGSU) used its capability in GIS mapping and data analytics to solve one of the key problems preventing increased internships: helping businesses and students locate one another.  While the OMIC program provided funding for students and employers for internships, both companies and students did not have an understanding of the scope of opportunities within their local markets.  CRD worked with JobsOhio and 5 other Universities in Northwest Ohio to first develop Business Partner Maps of companies within the JobsOhio targeted industries and specified mile radius of each campus to visually depict potential employers who could provide internships (and matching funds) for students through the OMIC program.  Following this initial effort, CRD worked with the Career Center at BGSU to develop Hometown Internship Maps for BGSU’s 40 partner businesses across the state of Ohio that spatially demonstrated BGSU students with a 3.0 GPA in specific majors living within 30 miles of that company.  The maps helped companies understand the skills and volume of BGSU students available for internships in their community and helped initiate conversations between the BGSU Career Center and these companies regarding larger partnerships.  The maps were well-received by BGSU’s Business Partners and the Ohio Department of Education and led to the placement of 107 interns in these companies in 2017. 

Finalist Presentation

UEDA Awards of Excellence Finalists presented at the Annual Summit in Milwaukee on October 22 and 23, 2018. Summit attendees then voted for the best initiative in each category.