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Harris Corporation Donates $1.25 Million for Villanova University Engineering Innovation Incubator Program

said William M. Brown, Harris chairman, president and CEO
A number of Villanova students have been hired by Harris Corporation as employees and/or interns. Pictured is a group of those Villanovans, along with Harris Corporation chairman, president and CEO, William M. Brown ’84 ME, ’87 MSME (front left) and Villanova University Provost, Patrick Maggitti (front right).

VILLANOVA, Pa. — Harris Corporation (NYSE: HRS) has donated $1.25 million to the Villanova University College of Engineering to fund a summer innovation incubator program that helps propel the next generation of engineers. The donation—with $1 million going towards endowing the program and the other $250,000 towards programmatic support— represents the largest single corporate contribution the College of Engineering has ever received.

The donation permanently funds and provides additional support for the Villanova Summer Innovation Incubator, which will be renamed the Harris Summer Innovation Program. The program exposes students to advanced real-world engineering challenges and fosters innovation and an entrepreneurial approach to problem solving. It encourages an open environment for self-directed teams of students to work on solutions to major engineering challenges.

“Harris and Villanova share a common belief in the power of project-based engineering learning,” said William M. Brown, Harris chairman, president and CEO. “We are one of the top-hiring companies for graduates of Villanova engineering programs and are proud to be associated with the university and this innovative program.”

The program also creates an open-design model to engineering problem solving that Villanova professors can fold into undergraduate education. After working on the engineering challenge, the teams of students in the program will make a presentation to Harris company leaders, mentors and engineering managers at the company’s headquarters in Melbourne, Fla.

“Harris Corporation has been a visionary partner for the College of Engineering, and has made a significant investment of time and resources in supporting our students’ and graduates’ success,” said Gary A. Gabriele, PhD, Drosdick Endowed Dean of Engineering. “We are honored to receive this generous gift, and look forward to creating an even more distinctive experience through the Harris Summer Innovation Program.”

“We are grateful to Bill Brown and Harris Corporation for the lasting impact this gift will have on Villanova engineering students,” said Michael J. O’Neill, Senior Vice President for University Advancement. “The Harris Corporation’s generous commitment will not only further enhance a unique student opportunity; it also will support Villanova’s growing endowment, which is a vital resource for the University’s future. This is an extremely exciting gift in what has already been a historic comprehensive capital campaign here at Villanova.”

To date, more than $705 million has been raised through For the Greater Great: The Villanova Campaign to Ignite Change.

About Villanova University: Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. There are more than 10,000 undergraduate, graduate and law students in the University's six colleges—the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Villanova School of Business, the College of Engineering, the College of Nursing, the College of Professional Studies and the Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law. Ranked among the nation’s top universities, Villanova supports its students’ intellectual growth and prepares them to become ethical leaders who create positive change everywhere life takes them. For more, visit

About Harris Corporation: Harris Corporation is a leading technology innovator, solving customers’ toughest mission-critical challenges by providing solutions that connect, inform and protect. Harris supports customers in more than 100 countries and has approximately $6 billion in annual revenue. The company is organized into three business segments: Communication Systems, Electronic Systems and Space and Intelligence. Learn more at