In 1965, Fenn College, a private institution which had one of the earliest cooperative education programs in the country, merged with Cleveland State University. The college’s remaining assets were used to form the Fenn Educational Foundation, a private foundation dedicated to carrying out the mission of Fenn College and its role in cooperative education. In 1971, the foundation was transformed into the Fenn Educational Fund of the Cleveland Foundation.

Today, the Fenn Fund continues to concentrate its resources on promoting and assisting cooperative education and internship programs at institutions of higher education in Greater Cleveland.

Eligibility: Institutions of higher education located in Greater Cleveland. Please review the RFP.

Next Available Funding Period: 8/1/19 – 7/31/20 (12 mos grants) or 8/1/19 – 7/31/21 (24 mos grants)

Next Application Deadline: 5/16/19

How to Apply: Login to the Grants Gateway and complete the Fenn Educational Fund application (eligible institutions only). You will be asked to enter a passcode before you can access the application.

For questions about eligibility or the application process, contact: 

Grants Management


Institution Recent Projects Contact Person
Baldwin Wallace University

2015: Career Connections for Humanities Majors, engage humanities majors in paid internships and corresponding coursework that strive to build a better understanding of how students’ skills connect with workplaces and employers’ needs

Carmen Castro-Rivera, MBA, GCDF Director of Career Services

Case Western Reserve University

2014: think[box] Co-Op Program, develop students’ career skills by engaging them in real-world projects proposed by industry partners

Michele Bourrie-Schafer, Executive Director of Foundation Relations

The Cleveland Institute of Art (CIA)

2016: Creativity Works Year 3, as all students will now be required to engage in a field-based real-world project with real-world clients prior to graduation, there is a need to further solidify the innovative Creativity Works program, document its impact, and build out curricular components for long-term adoption of the model

2015: Creativity Works Year 2, formally embed the “Creativity Works” program into CIA’s curriculum and expand the number of students that are able to engage in structuring self-initiated, paid visual arts and crafts internships for themselves

2014: Creativity Works, a 16-week experiential learning opportunity that encourages students to practice the skills and initiative that are required of professional working artists and craftspeople as they develop individualized, appropriate internships

Cleveland State University

2016: Careers Across the Curriculum, begin the process of implementing both a revised first-year curriculum for CSU’s “Introduction to University Life” course (which integrates career exploration and soft skills) as well as a new “Careers Across the Curriculum” pilot program (which includes a resource library for faculty and the design of a deliberate internship placement strategy for students)

2015: Career Success Network (Liberal Arts Focus Year 2), in an effort to embed the Career Success Network into the fabric of CSU for long-term sustainability, there is a need for faculty and staff to work with a consultant to explore and design curricula that aligns experiential learning and classroom learning across all majors

2014: Engaged Learning Internship Network (Liberal Arts Focus), apply existing manufacturing and information technology internship model as a means to engage liberal arts students in career exploration and high-quality internships in both the nonprofit and public sectors

Cuyahoga Community College

2014: Enhance Experiential Learning through Regional Collaboration, solidify a team approach to faculty involvement in student co-ops, engage more employers and 4-year institutions in professional development sessions with faculty members, incorporate “soft skills” instruction into academic preparation, and add job-shadowing experiences

Michael Landini,Executive Director,Resource Development & Cuyahoga Community College Foundation

John Carroll University

2016: Pathways to Success: Communications & Theatre Arts, creation of a unique and replicable department-level internship model that engages communications students in a series of professional development workshops and job exposure activities that will prepare them for internships

Pamela George-Merrill, Director of Foundation Relations and Grant Writing

Lake Erie College (LEC)

2016: Be Empowered C2C (College to Career) – Planning Phase, with a focus on the cultivation of faculty buy-in and the planning of activities for student engagement, LEC is designing a college-to-career component that will be embedded into the academic curriculum for all students and implemented through intensive internship, mentoring, and professional development opportunities

2014: The Lake County Collegiate Leadership Program Year 2, strengthen model for a two-semester long program that engages students in leadership, career, and networking development before proceeding to facilitate their placements as interns with local businesses

Pam Schlosser-Palermo, Senior Director of Development

Lakeland Community College (LCC)

2016: Excelling from Intake to Internship: Restructuring Career Services’ Experiential Learning Process, as part of a plan to restructure the Career Services’ Experiential Learning process, LCC is streamlining its internship process for students, improving the integration of job skills preparation into seminars and workshops, assisting faculty in the incorporation of experiential learning activities into academic programs, and expanding relationships with local businesses and community partners

2015: Geospatial Pathways: Mapping Success with GIS Internships Year 3, as the Geospatial Pathways program is institutionalized as an innovative, signature offering at LCC, continue to provide support for program staff and student professional networking activities

2014: Geospatial Pathways: Mapping Success with GIS Internships Year 2, expand the number of GIS-related internships, strengthen the relationship between the academic department and Career Services, develop a networking and career-readiness student program with a focus on women in GIS, and expand the implementation of GIS outreach workshops to partner organizations

Maureen McGuinness, Development
Notre Dame College (NDC)

2015: Enterprise Development Center at Notre Dame College (EDC@NDC), with a focus on sophomores, provide early, paid experiential learning opportunities across multiple disciplines to develop students’ career skills and simultaneously support the start-ups of local entrepreneurs

2014: Leveraging a Liberal Arts Degree, apply NDC’s model of engaging science faculty in the Eco-Career Program as a means to develop the capacity of its liberal arts faculty members to help students match their talents and skills with employer needs

Angelina Steiner,
Grants Manager

Ursuline College

2016: From First Year to Career (Phase 3), add a new “Ursuline on the Road” program component that engages juniors in a co-curricular symposium to visit industry-specific employers, develop networking skills, and cultivate internship opportunities

2015: From First Year to Career (Year 2), fine tune the pilot model and expand programming to include more targeted support for sophomores who may be feeling heightened uncertainty as they work to align their major and the prospect of a future, credit-bearing internship with their ultimate career goals

2014: From First Year to Career, through soft-skills training, engaging with NOCHE to build the capacity of local host companies, and offering 2-week long “mirco” internship experiences, help students explore career paths starting in their first year of undergraduate studies

Gerri Jenkins, MBA, Director, Office of Counseling and Career Services Coordinator of Assessment, Student Affairs