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Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI Receives $100,000 for Student Innovation


February 8, 2012

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The Purdue School of Engineering & Technology at IUPUI announced today a $100,000 gift designed to fuel student innovation. The gift, made by Tom and Peggy Ward of OmniSite, will create a Student Innovation Fund to help enterprising students actualize creative project ideas.

“Our students’ potential to accomplish great things is clear,” said Dr. David Russomanno, Dean of the School of Engineering and Technology. “It is increasingly evident on a national and global scale that young people have big ideas—ideas that can very quickly develop into a powerful movement or life-altering technology. We’re grateful to Tom and Peggy Ward for their continual investment in our students, and for helping them bring their ideas to life.”

Tom, a first generation college student who thought a Bachelor’s degree was beyond his reach, went on to earn a B.S. in Electrical Engineering Technology from the School of Engineering and Technology in 1985. Since that time, he married his wife Peggy, with whom he has founded OmniSite, a web-to-wireless telemetry company that enables remote control and monitoring of equipment and machinery. The Wards have also used their business success to give back to the School through student scholarships and by volunteering with the Department of Engineering Technology.

“We wouldn’t be where we are today if it weren’t for IUPUI and the School of Engineering and Technology,” said Tom Ward. “I started my time there not even believing I’d graduate, and left with the knowledge and tools to start my own company. Peggy and I are committed to helping today’s students do the same—and more.”

The Student Innovation Fund will provide resources for senior design students and student organizations that have innovative, multidisciplinary and/or collaborative project ideas. The Fund will be used to purchase parts, supplies and equipment for these projects, with the eventual goal of raising additional funds to create a student innovation endowment as well.

The gift counts toward the $1.25 billion goal of the IUPUI campus's IMPACT fundraising campaign, which was launched in 2010 and now stands at 90 percent of goal. Supporting "extraordinary student success" is one of the campaign's themes. The gift will be administered by the IU Foundation.

About the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI:

The mission of the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI is to be one of the best urban university leaders in the disciplines of engineering and technology recognized locally, nationally and internationally. The school’s goal is to provide students an education that will give them the leverage to be leaders in their communities, industry and society. For additional information on the School of Engineering & Technology, go to

About OmniSite:

OmniSite is a cellular M2M monitoring solutions company that provides cellular monitoring and control of equipment and machinery. The OmniSite system was specifically designed to be the easiest to install, setup and use on the market. OmniSite cellular monitors are on equipment and machinery across the country, allowing operators to view and analyze data from any computer at any time and anywhere. OmniSite is privately held with headquarters in Greenwood, Indiana. For more information visit our website at or e-mail us at