Recently, Dear Students . . .
. . . the University’s Board of Trustees passed an important resolution that supports the passage of State Issue 1, Ohio’s highly successful Third Frontier initiative, and formally expresses its gratitude to the Ohio General Assembly for its support of university-based research and development. In so doing, our Trustees joined with other universities across the state in endorsing a program that has been important to The University of Akron and which is vital to improving the economy of our state.
In about two weeks, Ohioans will go to the polls to decide whether to extend the Third Frontier initiative and permit the state to sell bonds to fund university research and other start-up activities. Historically, primary elections draw relatively few voters, and it is important to know what is at stake for our University and for our state.
To date, the Third Frontier initiative has yielded impressive results: More than $681 million in Third Frontier dollars have been invested since 2002, yielding $6.6 billion in economic activity, $2.4 billion in wages and benefits, and more than 48,000 jobs. The return has far exceeded the investment.
The research supported by the Third Frontier program provides the foundation for jobs and growth in businesses and industries across Ohio as diverse as advanced materials, alternative energy, biomedical imaging, and improved diagnostics, treatments for cancer, heart disease and other diseases.
You can learn much more about Issue 1 in my op-ed essay published on April 11 in the Akron Beacon Journal.
As you go about your studies and other activities, I would encourage you to talk about what the Third Frontier has meant to our University and our state. Please join me on May 4th in supporting Issue 1 for a brighter future for all Ohioans.
With every good wish,
Luis M. Proenza