Photo of Lisa Dankovich at Greg Crawford's presidential inauguration, Miami University.

Long-time staff member Lisa Dankovich now part of OARS team

Lisa Dankovich, Jill Meyer, and Johnna Reeder
Lisa Dankovich, left, works closely with Cincinnati business leaders, including Jill Meyer (center), President/CEO of Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber and Johnna Reeder (right), former President/CEO of REDI Cincinnati.

The OARS staff warmly welcomed me into their department this summer, making my move from University Communications and Marketing a seamless transition. As director of university external relations, I have been focused on developing relationships with business and community leaders in Greater Cincinnati since 2013. Joining OARS now allows me to more fully help faculty to increase their academic partnerships, expand research collaborations, and find new opportunities to share innovations and commercialization activities.

Because of my 29 years of experience at Miami, including invaluable times in intercollegiate athletics and government relations, I have developed a unique, holistic perspective of our university. My knowledge of Miami and extensive collaboration with colleagues in the region, give me insights on where we can maximize our resources and form new partnerships.

The goal to strengthen our business partnerships and visibility in Cincinnati evolved from the Miami 2020 Plan. “Foundation Goal 3: Effective Partnerships and Outreach” states as one of its objectives: “To advance Ohio’s economic development and prosperity by providing talent and expertise that helps shape policy and improves quality of life.”

Interestingly, the question I hear within the university most often is, “Why Cincinnati?” The Greater Cincinnati Region with its 15 counties is “home” to Miami University. Furthermore, we are deeply embedded in the region because of our Oxford, Hamilton, and Middletown campuses, the Voice of America Learning Center in West Chester, our presence in Over the Rhine, and our extensive alumni network. We have more than 50,000 alumni living and working in the region.

The region is known for its collaboration, innovation, and shared values. Cincinnati is a city where C-suite executives from Fortune 500, mid-cap, and startup companies strive to speak with one voice. They use the services of the Cincinnati Business Committee, Cincinnati Regional Business Committee, Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber, REDI Cincinnati, Cintrifuse, and city, state, and federal officials, among others, to activate a network that fosters the next phase of economic growth. These are the organizations I work with on a daily basis.

Currently, we have nearly 60 regional businesses actively engaged with the university through academic programming, advisory boards, client-based classes, and applied research and development. These include industry sectors spanning consumer products, financial services, health care, manufacturing, and military services.

Now, the Boldly Creative Initiative gives us new ways to serve the public through teaching, scholarship, and research. As President Crawford says, “It is the time for Miami to take bold and creative steps to benefit our students, the people of Ohio, and our nation . . . to invest in our future – innovating and creating a new generation of academic excellence that meets the challenge of our complex, data-driven global economy.”

A major key to our success is finding ways we can invest in our future and partner with our regional business and community leaders to make a positive difference. If you want to learn more about how I can help bring faculty and industry partners together for purposes of research, recruiting, consulting, and speaking opportunities, or if you need help to secure industry letters of support for state and federal grants, please contact me.

Written by Lisa Dankovich, Director of University External Relations, Office for the Advancement of Research and Scholarship, Miami University. Edited by Donna Boen, Managing Editor, University Communications and Marketing, Miami University.

Photos courtesy of Lisa Dankovich.

Panelists Candice Matthews, John Leland, Matt Willenbrink, Jim Oris, and Darrin Redus pose behind a table with a Miami University of Ohio Graduate School and Research tablecloth.

Panel discusses future of university and business collaboration

We had a full house for our panel discussion on the future of university and business collaboration, which was held last Thursday in King Library’s Center for Digital Scholarship. Approximately 60 people attended the event, titled “Innovation and Commercialization: Launching a New Era.” Panelists were Darrin Redus, Vice President of the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber’s Minority Business Accelerator; Candice Matthews, Co-founder and Executive Director of Hillman Accelerator; John Leland, Vice President for Research at the University of Dayton and Executive Director of the University of Dayton Research Institute; Jim Oris, Associate Provost for Research and Dean of the Graduate School at Miami University; and Matt Willenbrink, Director of Technology Partnerships at the University of Dayton. David M. M. Taffet, Executive in Residence for Inclusive Innovation and Commercialization at Miami University moderated the discussion and Miami University President Greg Crawford delivered welcome remarks. The event was streamed live on Facebook; watch a recording above.

Photo and Facebook Live video by Kelly Bennett, Manager of University Social Media and Marketing Strategy, University Communications and Marketing, Miami University.


Director Andor Kiss poses by the sign for the Center for Bioinformatics and Functional Genomics (CBFG)

Research facilities provide partnership opportunities

Miami University is well-known for being the top public university for commitment to undergraduate teaching. But our top-notch research facilities may be our best-kept secret. In addition to providing our students with excellent, hands-on training, these facilities also provide research and testing services to external clients and collaborators.

This video provides an overview of what we have to offer potential partners.