Illinois Institute of Technology Receives Motorola Solutions Foundation Innovation Generation Grant


Social Media Links

Chicago, IL — July 28, 2016 —

Illinois Institute of Technology, a technology-focused research university on Chicago’s South Side, today announced it received a grant for $50,000 as part of the “Innovation Generation Grant” program from the Motorola Solutions Foundation, the charitable arm of Motorola Solutions, Inc. The grant will help fund Illinois Tech’s Interprofessional Projects program, also known as IPRO. The IPRO program seeks to prepare teams of students from many different academic majors to work together to make contributions that inspire innovative thinking across STEM and other fields.

Specifically, funding from the Motorola Solutions Foundation will allow teams of Illinois Tech students from across academic disciplines to work with other Innovation Generation Grant recipients, to explore, prototype, and test new approaches to learning in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields, as well as to expose students to the emerging field of big data science by training teams of Illinois Tech students and area high school students to examine large data sets and make reasoned decisions from that data.

The Innovation Generation program provides awards to organizations, such as Illinois Tech, which foster and support science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) initiatives for teachers and students (U.S. preschool through university level)—especially girls and underrepresented minorities.

“Through a grant from the Motorola Solutions Foundation, Illinois Tech will continue to organize interdisciplinary teams of undergraduates to collaborate with other Foundation grantees, developing innovative program concepts that inspire our youth to pursue STEM fields,” said IPRO Program Director Thomas Jacobius.

IPRO is a pioneering program that was first developed by Illinois Tech in the 1990s. Students from disciplines as varied as design, psychology, and engineering come together to work on a problem encountered in society or business in an open-ended setting. IPRO students work in partnership with local companies and non-profits and employ user-centered design thinking, project management, communication, and teamwork to reach specific solutions.

With support over the years from the Motorola Solutions Foundation Innovation Generation Grant program, Illinois Tech has improved and enhanced its IPRO program. “Our distinctive Interprofessional Project (IPRO) course integrates the power of teams with user-centered design methods. Because of the Foundation’s support, IPRO teams have been prototyping new makerlab spaces, teacher training programs, and STEM curricula for Adler Planetarium, Girl Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana, and Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum and other organizations with STEM missions,” stated Jacobius.

The Motorola Solutions Foundation grant program overall will impact about 1 million students and teachers, each receiving an average of 120 programming hours from our partner non-profit organizations and institutions. Programs will support special populations including girls and women, underrepresented minorities, the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community, people with disabilities, and the military.

“The Motorola Solutions Foundation created the Innovation Generation Grant program nine years ago to support educational experiences that spark students to turn their dreams into innovations that will shape our society’s future,” said Matt Blakely, executive director of the Motorola Solutions Foundation. “Organizations like Illinois Institute of Technology are teaching tomorrow’s leaders that careers in engineering and technology are both fun and within their reach.”

For additional information on the Motorola Solutions Foundation grants programs, visit: and for more information on Illinois Tech please visit

About Illinois Institute of Technology

Illinois Institute of Technology, also known as Illinois Tech, is a private, technology-focused, research university, located in Chicago, offering undergraduate and graduate degrees in engineering, science, architecture, business, design, human sciences, applied technology, and law. One of 21 institutions that comprise the Association of Independent Technological Universities (AITU), Illinois Tech offers exceptional preparation for professions that require technological sophistication, an innovative mindset, and an entrepreneurial spirit.

About Motorola Solutions Foundation

The Motorola Solutions Foundation is the charitable and philanthropic arm of Motorola Solutions. With employees located around the globe, Motorola Solutions seeks to benefit the communities where it operates. The company achieves this by making strategic grants, forging strong community partnerships and fostering innovation. The Motorola Solutions Foundation focuses its funding on public safety, disaster relief, employee programs and education, especially science, technology, engineering, and math programming. For more information on Motorola Solutions’ corporate and foundation giving, visit our website: