Select Page

By Amanda Petrucelli

DONALDSON – Filling a skills gap between what industry needs in Indiana and who high schools and colleges graduate has been on Jim Cawthon’s mind.

Cawthon, director of career service and program development at Ancilla College, has found a solution in partnering with Conexus Indiana.

Cawthon said a partnership with Conexus helps Ancilla graduates find work in advanced manufacturing and logistics, which, in turn, makes Indiana a leader in these industries.

Today, Conexus Indiana and the North Central Regional Logistics Council formally endorsed Ancilla College’s two-year associate degree in Logistics and Inventory Systems. Cawthon said he believes this partnership will help address the skills gap between industry needs and students entering the workforce.

“Conexus Indiana brings a wealth of industry experience as well as a dynamic set of partners and is uniquely positioned to help Ancilla better prepare our graduates for in-demand careers right here in Indiana,” Cawthon said.

Ancilla has offered the Logistics and Inventory Systems degree in the past, however through the partnership with Conexus, the program is much more tailored to industry demands, said Instructor of Behavioral Science and Chair of the Division of History, Education, Business & Behavioral Science (HEBBS) Sam Soliman. The logistics curriculum was recently changed and approved by the Conexus Indiana and the North Central Regional Logistics Council, a 31-member council of logistics industry executives and education and regional business leaders.

Conexus Indiana is a private sector-led initiative focused on the advanced manufacturing and logistics sectors – two industries that combined employ one of every five Hoosiers. Conexus Indiana is focused on making Indiana a global manufacturing and logistics leader by strengthening the state’s human capital, building industry partnerships to capitalize on new opportunities and address key challenges, and promoting a better understanding of the importance of these industries to our state’s economic future. Conexus Logistics Council Logo

“It is a priority of Conexus’ workforce development plan to partner with leading post-secondary institutions throughout the state to better prepare students for ever-changing roles and logistics,” said David Holt, Vice President of Operations and Business Development for Conexus Indiana.

According to Holt, the logistics sector employs approximately 300,000 Hoosiers and an estimated 75,000 more Hoosiers are employed in logistics positions by the state’s manufacturers. Holt noted that the average wage of Indiana  logistics jobs is more than 15 percent more than other private sector jobs.. The partnership with Ancilla and the development of the new Logistics and Inventory Systems curriculum will be beneficial for both students and industry.

Cawthon also noted that to take advantage of this partnership, Ancilla students do NOT have to be logistics majors. They can major in business, communications, (or any field) – but take a logistics course, which will create awareness of job opportunities within their major but in the industrial field.

Conexus has been working with post-secondary institutions around the state through its Conexus Indiana Logistics Council (CILC) and 6 regional logistics councils. These councils are comprised of logistics industry leaders who work to ensure the continued strength of Indiana’s logistics industry. As part of its mission, the councils have worked with educators to align logistics curriculum with industry needs.

Ancilla College (, part of The Center at Donaldson, offers 25 associate degrees, eight one-year certificates and has 20 athletic teams. Since 1937, the college has been a sponsored ministry of the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ. It is a small, private, liberal arts school located two miles south of U.S. 30 on Union Road near Plymouth, Indiana.


Ancilla College is a liberal arts institution of higher learning sponsored by the Poor Handmaids of Jesus Christ and is part of The Center at Donaldson. The college’s religious tradition is Roman Catholic; its climate, ecumenical. In a caring environment, Ancilla serves a diverse population, as we transform and empower students to achieve high academic goals, lifelong learning, successful careers and values-centered lives.


Ancilla College, founded in 1937, is a private, Catholic, not-for-profit, two-year college offering over two dozen associate degree programs. Students from 12 states and 15 countries live and learn at Ancilla.

P.O. Box 1, 9601 Union Road, Donaldson, IN, 46513.

Call toll-free: 1.866.ANCILLA (866) 262-4552 or (574) 936-8898.


Copyright © 2018 The Trustees of Ancilla College

Ancilla College