Formed in 2007, Conexus Indiana is a Central Indiana Corporate Partnership (Cicp) initiative that accelerates, promotes, and grows Indiana’s advanced manufacturing and logistics industries by leading innovative collaborations among industry, academic, and public sector partners.

A man sits on a chair in a corporate lobby.
Steve Dwyer, president and chief executive officer of Conexus Indiana, 2009 Credit: Michelle Pemberton, IndyStar View Source

A year after its founding, the organization convened a group of logistics leaders into an industry council. An advanced manufacturing council, which includes leaders from the agriculture, aerospace, automotive, defense, industrial, medical device, plastics, RV, and metals sectors, was formed in 2011.

These two councils are part of the Conexus Indiana Networked Community. This team also includes six working groups who are focused on the cross-industry issues of talent development, infrastructure, environmental sustainability, economic development, Industry 4.0 (the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which involves smart technology), and communications and marketing.

Collectively, the Conexus Indiana Networked Community identifies challenges and opportunities, develops strategies, and engages in programs that drive industry growth. Specific activities include conducting research and data analyses important for industry success, engaging the public sector on issues that will move the industry sectors forward, providing a platform for collaboration and information exchange, and participating in and informing Conexus programs that build a robust talent pipeline.

Several Conexus programs have been developed to help grow the state’s pipeline of advanced manufacturing and logistics talent. At the high school level, the organization offers Hire Tech, a two-year curriculum program to prepare students for careers in the industry. It also provides a separate six-week summer internship program where participants receive hands-on, paid work experience.

For college students, the organization hosts the Conexus Indiana Case Competition. This event, established in 2016, features various teams competing to solve real-world business cases for cash awards. Participants are also able to connect with business executives and recruiters from the advanced manufacturing and logistics fields. Additional networking opportunities are available through Conexus’ Movers and Makers program.

Two talent development opportunities for the adult population are Catapult Indiana and INvets. The former is an entry-level workforce training program that provides Hoosiers with the skills and competencies to sustain meaningful careers in manufacturing. The latter, meanwhile, connects Hoosier companies directly with veterans so they can receive training and jobs in the field.

Revised March 2021

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