News from the Business Engagement Center: Michigan Strategic Fund approves funding, new talent working at the BEC and more


View recent event recaps, like the Hitachi Tech Talk, MAHLE/Formula SAE networking event and the DENSO professional development workshop


Michigan Strategic Fund approves $2.66 million in funding for university technology commercialization programs
On Oct. 24, the Michigan Strategic Fund—the oversight board of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC)—approved funding totaling $2.66 million for the Michigan Corporate Relations Network (MCRN) and Technology Transfer Talent Network (T3N); UM-Dearborn is a participating institution in both programs.

MCRN resources include the Small Company Innovation Program, which provides matching funds of up to $40,000 to small businesses to help cover the cost of conducting a research project at any state of Michigan public university.  MCRN also supports the placement of student interns, with a STEM focus, into small companies by providing matching funds.  Last year, UM-Dearborn supported 11 interns through the program, seven of whom remain with their companies on a full-time, part-time or internship basis.

Business Engagement Center on-boards new talent
Amanda Eisbrenner is the new relationship manager for the BEC and Career Services.

She joins the BEC from Michigan Community Resources—a nonprofit in downtown Detroit—where she was the development, marketing and communications manager. In this role, she was responsible for managing grants, fundraising campaigns, external communications, collateral production, volunteer management, and building and maintaining corporate partnerships.

She held previous positions in development, most notably with Wayne State University as development associate for the College of Engineering. Eisbrenner also has taught English overseas in Saudi Arabia, South Korea and Taiwan.

Eisbrenner received her undergraduate degree in journalism with a political science concentration in 2008 from Michigan State University. She is currently pursuing her Master of Public Administration degree at Wayne State University.

Isaiah Olufemi Oyewole joins the BEC as the new Business Engagement Center intern/MCRN program assistant. In his role, he will be responsible for assisting staff members with communication, marketing and administration of the programs under the Michigan Corporate Relations Network, a state program designed to promote innovative research and grow Michigan’s economy.

Additional responsibilities will include responding to inquiries from employers, aiding in the creation of monthly and annual reports, database design and implementation, and special projects related to corporate engagement. Olufemi Oyewole currently is a graduate student in the College of Engineering and Computer Science, studying energy systems engineering. 

Events and Corporate Engagement

Event Recaps  

Hitachi Tech Talk, October 19
Several representatives from Hitachi, including leadership, human resources, and research and development, visited campus to educate UM-Dearborn engineering students on the many exciting opportunities with the company. Company representatives presented various topics related to autonomous vehicles, vehicle electrification and vehicle suspension systems. Students also were given an opportunity to network and ask questions regarding co-op and internship opportunities at Hitachi.

MAHLE/Formula SAE networking event, October 25
Several members of the MAHLE technical and human resources team visited the Formula SAE electric team to learn more about what the team is working on and how MAHLE can work collaboratively with the team. Students were given the opportunity to share their role with the team and learn best practices from the MAHLE representatives. The event was well received by both students and MAHLE; this event will kick off the beginning of several events aimed at establishing a collaborative relationship between the company and both the electric and combustion Formula SAE teams.

DENSO professional development workshop, October 27
Representatives from DENSO’s human resources, technical and sales team hosted a professional development workshop for engineering and business students. Students learned about DENSO’s company culture and interview tips that can give them an edge on the competition when pursuing co-op positions with the company. DENSO provided on-site resume review for students and provided students with the opportunity to ask questions regarding open positions in the company.

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