Indiana’s Talent Gap and Brain Drain/Gain Workshop

Making Indiana a Magnet for Jobs and Talent

April 26, 2017 – Indianapolis Marriott East
7:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Click here to view Workshop Report

The workforce survey conducted in 2016 by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce found that 45% of respondents had left jobs unfilled in the past year due to under-qualified applicants. This is an increase from 39% in 2014. For the 2013-14 through 2015-16 academic years, 50% of bachelor-level graduates at Purdue University who were from Indiana found employment outside the state. Further, for these same years, only 14% of graduates from other states and 20% of international bachelors-level graduates stayed in Indiana. These are symptoms of a set of challenges facing the state. The challenges are not new and many efforts by government, business and industry, non-governmental organizations and educational institutions are underway in an attempt to address them.

This workshop will frame and detail the challenges, solicit a variety of viewpoints (including industry, higher education and recent graduates), and bring the range of stakeholders together to formulate ideas and plans to address these issues.

This workshop is held in conjunction with the 53rd Annual Human Resources Conference & Expo. Individual registration is $49.

A partnership of Purdue University, Indiana Chamber of Commerce, Lilly Endowment, Inc, Indiana Commission for Higher Education and Indiana INTERNnet.

Making Indiana a Magnet for Jobs and Talent: Responding to the Challenge
Keynote Panel
Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Join us as we open day three of the conference with this panel of experts. They will frame the overall issues facing the State of Indiana and discuss the efforts that have been made to address the “talent gap” and “brain drain” (and foster “brain gain”) and provide the current status and potential avenues for progress.

Dr. Sue Ellspermann, Ph.D.
President, Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana
Dr. Sue Ellspermann is president of Ivy Tech Community College and former Lieutenant Governor of the State of Indiana. From 2006 to 2012 she served as the founding Director of the Center of Applied Research and Economic Development at the University of Southern Indiana (USI). She also has classroom experience teaching at USI, University of Evansville and University of Louisville.

Ellspermann’s educational and workforce development experience is extensive. As Lieutenant Governor she was vice chair of the Indiana Career Council tasked to align Indiana’s education and workforce development system to meet the needs of employers. As the chair of the Pathways and Implementation Committee Ellspermann helped lead efforts on a strategic plan that aligns K-12, higher education and workforce development efforts to employer needs. She also served on the State Workforce Investment Council, an organization charged with developing opportunities for Hoosiers to gain employment and earn competitive wages, as well as developing and implementing workforce solutions based on the input of representatives of local workforce development boards.

Mark Ferrera
Vice President Talent Management, Eli Lilly and Company
Mark Ferrara is vice president of human resources, responsible for talent management at Eli Lilly and Company.  Mark’s responsibilities include global employee recruiting, assessment, learning and development, staffing (including succession management), performance management, diversity, and HR research.  He also has responsibility for the company’s archives.

Mark’s previous HR roles include senior director of compensation and benefits, and senior director of human resources supporting Lilly Research Laboratories.  His Lilly experiences also include leadership roles in facilities management, where he was responsible for planning and maintenance of office space in Indianapolis.  He initially joined Lilly in 1988 as a project architect designing research facilities.


Moderator: Suresh V. Garimella, Ph.D.
Executive Vice President for Research and Partnerships, Purdue University
Suresh Garimella is Purdue University’s inaugural executive vice president for research and partnerships and the Goodson Distinguished Professor of Mechanical Engineering. He also continues to direct the National Science Foundation Cooling Technologies Research Center, which he founded in 1999.

Garimella oversees Purdue’s $600 million research enterprise, including Discovery Park, an interdisciplinary complex for grand-challenge research. He also is responsible for Purdue’s international programs and its global and corporate partnerships endeavors.