Businesses & Economic Development Corporations

Many cities across the country proclaim themselves as “college towns.” But, what exactly constitutes a college town?  At the University of Notre Dame, we believe a true college town is one in which the college or university and the town are partners in improving the quality of life for both students and residents.

In a 2010 University of Albany Rockefeller Institute report by Shaffer and Wright, the authors describe how higher education across the country is working to drive economic development and community revitalization.  Key efforts include:

  • Putting their research power to work by developing new ideas that will strengthen the country’s competitive edge in the new economy — and then by helping to deploy those innovations into commercial use.
  • Providing a wide range of knowledge-focused services to businesses and other employers, including customized job-training programs, hands-on counseling, technical help, and management assistance.
  • Embracing a role in the cultural, social, and educational revitalization of their home communities.
  • And, most fundamentally, educating people to succeed in the innovation age.

The Notre Dame Difference

The University of Notre Dame also draws upon the rich tradition of Catholic Social teaching to inform its community and economic development activity.  In his recent document, Caritas in Veritate (Charity in Truth), Pope Benedict XVI highlights the important role of economic activity in human life.

"Economic activity cannot solve all social problems through the simple application ofcommercial logic.  This needs to be directed towards the pursuit of the common good..."

The University partners with local and national businesses and economic development agencies for research purposes, for internships and career opportunities for students, and to fundamentally improve the quality of life in our local community.  Notre Dame's Alumni Office, Career Center, and Office of Research represent some of these partners, in addition to these key collaborators provided below.

St. Joseph County Chamber of Commerce

The St. Joseph County Chamber of Commerce, (Established 1909) South Bend, Indiana, is a catalyst organization, leading businesses and the community to achieve an environment ripe for growth and expansion. We offer leadership, advocacy, programs and resources, all aimed at creating a pro-business climate. We create and convene powerful partnerships that leverage the talents and resources of our member businesses. We hope to be a catalyst for growth and prosperity for our members and community.

IDEA Center at Notre Dame

Standing for Innovation, De-Risking and Enterprise Acceleration, the IDEA Center is the fundamental resource for all commercialization and entrepreneurial activities at the University of Notre Dame. It provides the necessary space, services and expertise for idea development, commercialization, business formation, prototyping, entrepreneurial education and student entrepreneurial efforts. It is designed to bring the best Notre Dame faculty, staff and student ideas and innovations to market.

South Bend Heritage Inc

South Bend Heritage is a local non-profit that has worked to reverse the physical and social decline taking place in South Bend’s urban neighborhoods since 1974. We appreciate the support of private citizens, businesses and foundations as they help ensure the ongoing revitalization of South Bend.