HIGHER EDUCATION OPPORTUNITY FUND
Through the Legacy Fort Wayne initiative, the Higher Education Opportunity Fund (HEOF) was established to support capital investment that significantly increases education and training opportunities in and around Fort Wayne’s core business district. By partnering with educational institutions seeking to expand or establish a presence in our downtown or urban core neighborhoods, the City expects long range benefits to emerge, including the expanded recognition of Fort Wayne as a place for innovative learning experiences, and the continued growth of a diverse and compelling urban environment.
The Higher Education Opportunity Fund, which will provide higher learning nonprofit institutions up to a $3 million, 3-to-1 match for capital investments. The investments must be made in downtown Fort Wayne or surrounding core neighborhoods. Letters were sent to college and university presidents throughout Indiana and the tri-state region inviting them to submit potential projects to be funded.
Some of the criteria that will be considered for potential projects include:
Opportunities for higher education support community goals in several meaningful ways. Locating higher education facilities in the core of our city will work to draw students to downtown, increasing street level activity and creating demand for retail goods and services. Development and redevelopment of the downtown core and infill area increases property values and stabilizes neighborhoods. Citizens benefit from more educational opportunities in the central city, accessible from all areas of the community; and they are able to enjoy the direct benefits of the economic vibrancy generated by increased activity downtown. Finally, the opportunity to raise overall educational achievement provides a long term benefit to our workforce, thereby improving local economic development prospects.
PROJECT UPDATE 9/10/13:
On September 10, 2013, Mayor Tom Henry announced that the first grant from the Legacy Higher Education Opportunity Fund has been awarded to Indiana Tech's new academic center.
Indiana Tech will receive $1 million to help support capital expenditures for the construction of the academic center. Indiana Tech is investing nearly $15 million for academic center, which is currently under construction and is expected to be complete by August 2014.
Contact Sharon Feasel, the City’s Higher Education Opportunity Fund manager, at 260-427-2107, to learn more about the Higher Education Opportunity Fund. All applications must include proposals for capital expenses and a long-term commitment to downtown or central urban neighborhoods. More information about the guiding principles and project criteria for the Higher Education Opportunity Fund can be viewed at: Higher Education Opportunity Fund Information
Citizens Square200 East Berry St.Fort Wayne, IN, 46802, USA Tel: (260) 427-8311 or 311 locally
"Today (Oct. 28, 2010) is a good day for the people of Fort Wayne," said Mayor Tom Henry. "This settlement will strengthen Fort Wayne and better position us for economic growth. Not only does it provide an important income stream, it ensures that I&M continues to provide quality service to the area."