Teamwork, innovation, and complex problem-solving skills make successful professionals—and reflect the overall performance of their organizations. Since 1995, the IPRO team project course at IIT has been teaching students how to excel in the workplace by providing them the practical tools that can make a difference in their professional and personal lives.
The IPRO program joins together students from various academic disciplines to work as a team to tackle a real-world problem. Students from architecture, engineering, and humanities may create low-cost shelter solutions, or chemistry, business, and law students may develop best practices in CO2-reducing technologies. Such experiential learning reinforces traditional education methods, providing students a richer academic experience.
Each IPRO course is organized as a team of 5-15 students from sophomore to graduate level. All projects are designed with goals that can be completed in one semester. However, many projects continue over multiple semesters and years, with continuing areas of investigation. No two semesters are ever alike. An Entrepreneurial IPRO (EnPRO) has the added dimension of business planning and new venture analysis.
- Many corporate and community partners participate in and sponsor projects
- Students, faculty, alumni, and various organizations propose project topics
- Service-learning IPRO projects strive to improve the human condition, K–12 education, and other efforts that make the world a better place
- Sustainability IPRO projects aim to preserve our environmental heritage through exploration of technologies, behaviors, and practices that change our way of thinking, working, and living
- Entrepreneurial IPRO projects (EnPROs) pursue ideas with a business slant
Towards the end of every semester, the Interprofessional Projects Program organizes an event called IPRO Day, which is a culmination of all the work teams have done during the semester. On that day, all IPRO teams and even guest teams from other universities compete for cash prizes and recognition by giving formal presentations and showcasing their projects in the form of an exhibit. Some of the past guest teams include participants from Auburn University, California State University-Fresno, Michigan Technological University, and more.
Who Takes an IPRO
The interprofessional course is an IIT general education requirement. All undergraduates must complete at least two 3-credit IPRO courses. Graduate students are encouraged to enroll in an IPRO project course as well, and may receive elective credit toward their degree.