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Branstad’s, Reynolds’ proposal wins NGA grant to advance innovative education and workforce development initiatives

This is a press release from the Office of the Governor (IA)

Thursday, August 14, 2014 – (DES MOINES) | Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds today announced the State of Iowa has been awarded a National Governors Association (NGA) grant to assist in continuing their innovative educational and workforce development programs within Iowa. The grant is worth up to $170,000, and was awarded after the governor’s office submitted a proposal to the “NGA Policy Academy on Aligning the Education and Training Pipeline to the Needs of the Economy.”
“Lieutenant Governor Reynolds and I know that in order for Iowa to remain competitive in developing and attracting high-quality, world-class careers, we must continue to provide effective education and job-training,” said Branstad. “We’re pleased to receive this grant from the National Governors Association to continue advancing Iowa’s skilled workforce and innovative education programs.”
The grant will help Iowa continue to advance innovative programs like the Skilled Iowa Initiative, the Governor’s Science Technology, Engineering and Math initiative, Home Base Iowa, the Iowa Apprenticeship and Job Training program and other programs aimed at closing the middle-skills gaps.  A variety of state entities will collaborate with private sector, non-profit, and educational stakeholders to continue to advance Iowa’s efforts to grow our talent pipeline.
“Today’s announcement of new funds for workforce and education development is yet another win for hardworking Iowans,” said Reynolds. “We’re proud that Iowa’s unemployment rate has dropped nearly thirty percent and more Iowans are working than ever before, but if we’re to continue to be globally competitive, we must continue to innovate.”
The NGA initiative is part of 2013-2014 Chair’s Initiative of Oklahoma Gov. Marry Fallon titled, “America Works: Education and Training for Tomorrow’s Jobs.”

Walsh University Awarded Prestigious National Science Foundation Grant Benefiting Chemistry Students

This is a press release from Walsh University

Award Marks First NSF Grant in Walsh History

North Canton, OH-July 28, 2014 | Walsh University has been awarded its first National Science Foundation (NSF) grant for almost $600,000 to fund scholarships for students interested in pursuing the field of chemistry.  With an initial award of $75,616, NSF has pledged continued support of the program for an additional $518,137 over a five-year period.
The highly competitive Scholarships in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (S-STEM) grant was awarded to the Walsh Division of Mathematics and Sciences to fund the creation of the new STAR Chemistry Program: “Inspiring, Educating, and Preparing Young Science Talent for an American Ready Workforce.”
“NSF grants are very competitive, and Walsh University is honored to receive one.  It is a strong endorsement of our faculty and the quality of our programs. The University has always had a tradition of excellence, and in recent years we have renewed our commitment to extend that tradition more deeply into the areas of scholarship and research,” said Walsh University President Richard Jusseaume.  “A very important part of Walsh’s mission is to promote academic excellence and close student-teacher interactions. The NSF grant along with initiatives such as our new Center for Science Innovation will help to reinforce that mission while also providing students interested in pursuing careers in the sciences the resources they require for success.”
NSF funding will help to enhance Walsh strategies, services, and partnerships focused on increasing chemistry major recruitment, retention, graduation, and career advancement among academically talented students with financial need. The grant will enable Walsh to award 16 four-year scholarships to eligible chemistry students, ranging from $5,000 to $10,000 per year, depending on each student’s level of unmet financial need and merit.
Another important component of the STAR program will be the creation of the new STAR scholars learning community for chemistry students. Over the five-year grant period, two groups of eight students, the first in fall 2015 and the next in fall 2016, will live and take classes within a designated learning community and participate in activities that will strengthen their self-identity as chemists.
“The S-STEM grant will serve as a catalyst to create momentum for what we hope will be a stellar chemistry major cohort. This initiative will move Walsh to the next level in reputation and performance relative to the quality of our chemistry graduates and our community involvement,” said Division of Mathematics and Sciences Chair Michael Dunphy, Ph.D. “What this entails is a restructuring of a traditional chemistry major to make it more flexible and market appropriate. We will be able to provide more choices for our students and focus on internships to help prepare students to enter the workforce.”
The STAR scholars will benefit from Walsh’s redesigned chemistry curriculum that addresses the existing gap in skills needed by chemistry graduates and those identified by local industry partners. As a part of this new curriculum, all Walsh chemistry majors participate in an internship, a three-semester integrated laboratory experience, and a four-year Chemistry Careers Seminar. Held every second week, the Career Series brings together faculty, students and industry partners to speak about current industry issues and career opportunities for students.
“We realized we couldn’t just create a Career Series, we had to align our curriculum to real jobs available in NE Ohio. Companies want experience as well as a bachelor’s degree,” said Associate Professor of Chemistry and Walsh’s NSF grant Principal Investigator Peter Tandler, Ph.D. “Our new curriculum integrates the American Chemical Society criteria for a certified degree with coursework and internships that produce graduates with expertise that fits our local workforce needs. STAR scholars will take courses that tie directly to regional industries such as synthetic and metal material, environmental and green, and fuels and energy chemistry.”
In order to attract eligible candidates and broaden participation, the NSF grant will also help to fund a comprehensive recruitment plan that involves interacting with students at high schools, on-campus science workshops, and regional science fairs.
Through grant facilitation by Walsh’s Director of Grants and Sponsored Research Rachel Hammel, the STAR Program is under the direction of Walsh chemistry faculty members Dr. Peter Tandler, Dr. Amy Heston, Dr. Neil Walsh, Dr. Michael Dunphy and Dr. Nisreen A. Nusair.
The Walsh Division of Mathematics and Sciences, housed within the new School of Arts and Sciences, is the University’s third largest academic division and has experienced a 255 percent increase in students majoring in the sciences since 2005. The division’s new state-of-the-art Center for Science Innovation building will facilitate student learning through the addition of learning and research labs to support advanced chemistry as well as exercise science, human anatomy, occupational therapy and physics.
NSF is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950. With an annual budget of $7.2 billion (FY 2014), NSF is the funding source for approximately 24 percent of all federally supported basic research conducted by America's colleges and universities. In many fields such as mathematics, computer science and the social sciences, NSF is the major source of federal backing.
Walsh University is an independent, co-educational Catholic liberal arts and sciences institution that promotes academic excellence and diversity and provides close faculty-student interaction. It is dedicated to teaching its nearly 3,000 students from 27 states and 37 countries to become leaders in service to others through a values-based education with an international perspective in the Judeo-Christian tradition.

NASA Selects Proposals to Increase STEM Education at Community and Technical Colleges

This is a press release from NASA

WASHINGTON, Aug. 13, 2014 (PRNewswire-USNewswire) | NASA's Office of Education will award more than $17.3 million through the National Space Grant and Fellowship Program to increase student and faculty engagement in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) at community colleges and technical schools across the U.S. Each award has a two-year performance period and a maximum value of $500,000. 
The 35 awards were granted after a solicitation to members of the national Space Grant Consortia. Winning proposals outlined ways to attract and retain more students from community and technical colleges in STEM curricula, develop stronger collaborations to increase student access to NASA's STEM education content, and increase the number of students who advance from an associate to a bachelor's degree.
The California Space Grant Consortium, for example, proposes to enhance STEM preparation at 12 state community colleges and improve opportunities for approximately 300 students to transfer to either the University of California or the California State University system. This multi-faceted program includes development of a distance learning STEM course for faculty and students that fosters education and training in programmable microcomputers, near-space ballooning, small satellites, autonomous ground robots and wearable sensor vests for sports and health monitoring.
The Colorado Space Grant Consortium proposes to add four new community college campuses as affiliates to the consortium. Students and faculty members from these institutions will participate in STEM activities by designing, building and launching high-altitude balloon payloads. In addition, the students will have an opportunity to compete for scholarships, summer internships at NASA centers and to participate in the RockOn! workshop, part of an ongoing collaboration with NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.
On the East Coast, the North Carolina Space Grant Consortium proposes to offer competitive STEM scholarships at the community college level in order to attract and retain students through graduation and/or matriculation into four-year universities. The consortium also will offer a Team Design Challenge and Competition for faculty and students across the state to increase STEM education experiences featuring NASA content.
Space Grant Consortia operate in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. Each has a lead institution to manage its activities. In addition, there are more than 850 affiliates, including colleges and universities, industry, museums and science centers, and state and local agencies, that work to support and enhance science and engineering education, research and public outreach efforts for NASA's aeronautics and space projects. The affiliates work directly with the lead Space Grant institutions to deliver quality STEM programs.
Through this NASA higher education program, the agency continues its tradition of investing in the U.S. education infrastructure with the goal of developing STEM skills and capabilities critical to achieving the nation's exploration goals through a robust, STEM-literate workforce.
To view a complete list of the awardees and their winning abstracts, visit:
For more information about the National Space Grant and Fellowship Program, visit:
For more information about NASA's education programs, visit:

International Association for STEM Leaders Gives Ershela Sims the The Statewide STEM Leadership

This is a press release from the International Association for STEM Leaders

The Statewide STEM Leadership award was presented by the International Association for STEM Leaders to the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics and was accepted by program leader, Dr. Ershela Sims, Dean of Engineering and Technology. This school is a statewide leader in North Carolina. They not only offer a high quality and unique STEM education to their students, they also offer STEM classes to schools around the state through an innovative distance education program,” said Dr. Carole Inge, founder of IASL. 

The school’s courses range from AP Computer Science and Modeling with Differential Equations to Mechanical Engineering, and Biomedical Instrumentation. In addition, NCSSM offers a variety of courses to other high schools around the state online and through interactive video conferencing such as Honors Aerospace Engineering and Computational Chemistry. In addition, faculty at the school are in the last stages of completing a multi-strand four year high school STEM curriculum for the NC Department of Public Instruction, which will be implemented at schools around the state. Every one of North Carolina’s 13 congressional districts is represented by students who attend this institution.

Dr. Ershela Sims is the Dean of Engineering and Technology and an Engineering Instructor at the NC School of Science and Mathematics (NCSSM). As an instructor, she has developed and teaches a variety of engineering courses including, Intro to Mechanical Engineering, Statics, and Biomedical Instrumentation. In addition, she was a lead developer on a curriculum development project for the NC Department of Public Instruction, where she developed a 4-year curriculum in health & life sciences and biomedical engineering. She also mentors student research projects in Biomechanics as well as other areas of engineering and is the faculty sponsor for multiple engineering clubs including NSBE Jr and NASCAR Ten80.


Introducing with a Special Offer for the First 10,000 Volunteers

The following is a press release from PR Newsire

BOSTON, Aug. 5, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- A new online learning platform is open for registration starting today; the first 10,000 volunteer guest speakers can sponsor their favorite school to use the platform for free.
United Teach is a platform where virtual volunteers join K-12 classrooms and help teachers inspire kids to learn. Student engagement is the single most important success factor in learning, and guest speakers are a proven way to increase engagement in the classroom.
Volunteer without leaving your desk. 
United Teach makes volunteering easy. Volunteers specify the maximum amount of time they're willing to volunteer (the minimum is one hour per year), their favorite subjects (hundreds of topics to choose from range from simply reading books to astronomy, for rocket scientists). Once registered, the volunteer is displayed to teachers looking for a speaker with their expertise. Teachers email volunteers to discuss their needs, and assuming a good fit, schedule time for the volunteer to join the class via video chat.
United Teach is the second platform for startup educational technology company CrowdWorks, Inc. CEO David Bebko, a former Google marketing executive, explains, "when a class is learning about marine biology, online learning resources such as videos, articles, and games are fantastic. Nothing though beats a live dialog with a marine biologist. We're launching United Teach to amplify the ability for these human connections to occur more often."
Registration opens today, special offer for early volunteers.  
Volunteer registration opens today, and the first 10,000 volunteers will receive an exclusive invitation to nominate their favorite school to receive the service free of charge for the entire 2014-2015 school year. Normally, the annual subscription for the service is $12 per class. Depending on the number of teachers, your registration could be a gift worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars to a school.
Registration for teachers is currently invite-only, and will open to all schools on September 15. "We have a chicken and egg challenge with these types of platforms" explains Bebko. "If teachers register and there are no volunteers, they may not come back. We have a number of teachers who will be testing the sessions over the next 45 days, but the platform will be fully operating after September 15."
About CrowdWorks, Inc. 
CrowdWorks is a pioneer in crowdlearning - applying the rapidly growing crowdsourcing model to education. CrowdWorks was founded in 2013 by a group of education and technology experts who recognize the continued importance of human-to-human interaction in the learning process. The company's first platform,, is used today by language learners in more than 110 countries. The company is headquartered in Boston, with an office in Singapore.
For more information, please contact:  
Stephanie Castanos 
(401) 218-0694  
Marketing Manager, CrowdWorks Inc.  
SOURCE United Teach

Blackboard Acquires CardSmith

This is a press release from PR Newsire
WASHINGTON, Aug. 7, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Blackboard has acquired CardSmith, the industry's leading cloud provider of campus card solutions and turn-key card program management services, Blackboard announced today. CardSmith joins Blackboard's growing set of student identification services and broadens the credentialing deployment options the company offers schools and institutions.
CardSmith's industry-leading, multi-tenant cloud technology enables universities and K-12 schools and districts to deliver a comprehensive student credential solution without requiring software management or physical servers. Because of the acquisition, Blackboard can now offer cloud and locally-hosted processing solutions with in-house or outsourced management to a much wider range of schools.
Blackboard has provided campus card services and integrated campus commerce and security solutions to hundreds of institutions since 2001 through Blackboard Transact™, a fully-integrated technology platform that creates a holistic experience for students to navigate life on and off campus. The technology enables students to enter secure buildings and facilities; pay for items such as books, meals, laundry and printing; and access campus events through a wave or tap of their smart card.
"Given the diversity of learners, there is a critical need for institutions to provide students with the most innovative technologies that support them both in and out of the classroom," said Jay Bhatt, CEO of Blackboard. "Today's news marks the latest step we are making in growing and investing in our Blackboard Transact portfolio and strengthening the educational experience we help schools provide to their students."
"By combining with the campus card industry's only proven and comprehensive cloud deployment offering, we are able to deliver a full-range of reliable and scalable options to schools," said David Marr, senior vice president of Blackboard Transact. "These options are critical in meeting the unique needs of our diverse community, while also making a difference in the lives of students."
CardSmith's campus card or verification solution is used by hundreds of institutions and over 2 million cardholders. The company's unique deployment model allows for the automatic delivery of the most current features and capabilities without downtime for upgrades or demanding time of campus or district IT resources.
"As cloud infrastructures become more mature and deployment more widely adopted, today's news marks a big step in the evolution of the campus transaction industry," said Jay Summerall, founder and president of CardSmith. "By joining forces with Blackboard, we are giving an innovative solution more scale to serve more institutions and improve the educational experience. We couldn't be more thrilled to be a part of a company that shares our mission of putting students first and being dedicated to their success."
For more information about Blackboard, click here or follow @Blackboard on Twitter.
About Blackboard Inc.
Blackboard is the world's leading education technology company that is reimagining education by challenging conventional thinking and advancing new learning models. We rapidly deploy relevant and meaningful technologies and services to meet the needs of the modern day learner and the institutions that serve them, driving success and growth for both. In partnership with higher education, K-12, corporate organizations, and government agencies around the world, we help every learner achieve their full potential. For more information about Blackboard follow us on Twitter at @Blackboard.
Any statements in this press release about future expectations, plans and prospects for Blackboard represent the Company's views as of the date of this press release. Actual results may differ materially as a result of various important factors. The Company anticipates that subsequent events and developments will cause the Company's views to change. However, while the Company may elect to update these statements at some point in the future, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to do so.
SOURCE Blackboard Inc.

CyberPatriot Announces Award Winners of 2014 Coach of the Year, Mentor of the Year

This is a press release from the Air Force Association

ARLINGTON, Va., Aug. 11, 2014 (PRNewswire) | The Air Force Association's CyberPatriot National Youth Cyber Education Program announced today its coach and mentor of the year.  Kenneth Steffey of Winter Park, Florida was named Coach of the Year, and Ron Woerner of Bellevue, Nebraska was named Mentor of the Year.  They were recognized for their work during CyberPatriot VI National Youth Cyber Defense Competition season.
Kenneth Steffey spearheaded recruiting, funding, and teaching efforts for Centurion Battalion, the top CyberPatriot VI Florida team and the top U.S. Naval Sea Cadet Corps team in the nation.  Mr. Steffey was lauded for providing his students realistic, mock competitions routinely and allowing every cadet to gain hands-on experience in fending off cyber attacks.  Additionally, Steffey vigorously advocated for CyberPatriot by organizing training for new Sea Cadet CyberPatriot coaches and constantly promoting the program throughout the nation. 
Mr. Ron Woerner, a professor at Bellevue University in Bellevue, Nebraska, was cited for being deeply involved in his local community and striving to promote STEM educational opportunities. Mr. Woerner prepared his students for the CyberPatriot competition by organizing trips and conferences for his team to attend, such as the AIM Youth seminar at INFOTECH and visiting Omaha's FBI Cyber Crime laboratory.  Woerner also planned and executed the first "Cyber PlusPlus" competition, which hosted nine teams and proved to be popular within the CyberPatriot community.
CyberPatriot National Commissioner Bernie Skoch said, "CyberPatriot would not be possible without the support and dedication from coaches and mentors like Kenneth and Ron.  They are the reason CyberPatriot has become a top-tier STEM competition in the nation and we appreciate all of their hard work.  We are always amazed by the passion that drives individuals to offer their time and resources to promote STEM education to today's youth.  We thank them and all of the volunteers in their efforts to educate and train American students in their journey to become our cyber leaders of the future."
To be considered for Coach of the Year, individuals must have been nominated by a registered mentor, Team Assistant, or Competitor.  For Mentor of the Year, the individual could only be nominated by the team's Coach of Record.  The nominees must have displayed creativity, integrity, and dedication while promoting CyberPatriot outside the team environment and exposing their competitors to STEM career and educational opportunities. 
The Coach and Mentor of the Year winners will be recognized at the Air Force Association Convention Awards dinner in September at the Gaylord Hotel at National Harbor, Maryland.
The Air Force Association is a non-profit, independent, professional military and aerospace education association. Our mission is to promote a dominant United States Air Force and a strong national defense, and to honor Airmen and our Air Force Heritage. To accomplish this, we:
  • EDUCATE the public on the critical need for unmatched aerospace power and a technically superior workforce to ensure U.S. national security.
  • ADVOCATE for aerospace power and STEM education.
  • SUPPORT the Total Air Force family and promote aerospace education.
AFA has 200 chapters nationally and internationally representing 100,000 members. Visit AFA at

Lawrence High School 9th Graders will Soon Have Access to New After-School STEM Program, Supported by the Verizon Foundation

This is a press release from the Verizon Foundation

LAWRENCE, Mass., Aug. 5, 2014 (PRNewswire) | A new after-school mentoring program for Lawrence High School 9th graders is designed to get students excited about science, technology, engineering and math, and interested in pursuing careers in these in-demand fields.
The STEM Mentoring program, supported by the Verizon Foundation, will be held in the new science and chemistry labs on Northern Essex Community College's Lawrence Campus. Forty Lawrence High School students, 20 in the fall semester and 20 in the spring, will be selected for the program, which meets once a week for eight weeks. 
Students will participate in science and engineering labs co-taught by a Northern Essex professor, a Lawrence High School teacher and a community mentor, covering topics such as biology, math, chemistry, computer programming, CIS and robotics. 
"The emphasis will be on creating a wow-factor learning experience since that's what grabs kids attention at this age," said Dr. Noemi Custodia-Lora, executive director of the Lawrence Campus and community relations, who will be coordinating this program, along with Martha Leavitt, NECC's director of campus operations, administration and finance.
Stephanie Lee, Verizon regional director of government affairs, said: "The Verizon Foundation is committed to enriching STEM education for students across the country. Our support of this program with Northern Essex Community College and Lawrence High School will offer students new skills sets to improve their achievement and help prepare them for college and careers in STEM."
The Verizon Foundation provided $15,000 to support this program. In addition to the Verizon Foundation, Northern Essex and Lawrence High School, other partners in the program include the Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence and the White Fund.
The Verizon Foundation is focused on accelerating social change by using the company's innovative technologies to help solve pressing problems in education, healthcare and energy management. For more information about Verizon's corporate responsibility work, visit; or for regular updates, visit the Foundation on Facebook ( and Twitter (
With campuses in Haverhill and Lawrence Northern Essex Community College is a state-assisted college, offering over 70 associate degree and certificate programs as well as hundreds of noncredit courses designed for personal enrichment and career growth. More than 7,400 students are enrolled in credit associate degree and certificate programs on the Haverhill and Lawrence campuses; and another 6,700 take noncredit workforce development and community education classes on campus and at businesses and community sites across the Merrimack Valley. Northern Essex is the only state college located in the lower Merrimack Valley Region of Massachusetts. For more information, visit the website at

Sonpreet Bhatia (Co-Founder & CTO, MobileROI): The Root of Innovation: Science Education

This is a guest blog post by Sonpreet Bhatia, Co-Founder and CTO, MobileROI

Ingenuity is the bedrock of our country’s successful economy. The U.S. became a superpower, in part, because great minds were able to imagine, design and build solutions to challenges that plagued humankind for ages. Think of the innovations born of the 20th century — from the microprocessor to human heart transplants and everything in between, the mundane to the miraculous. Today, however, the country is at a tipping point; the traits and advantages that made the U.S. a world leader are no longer reserved for the Western world, as they are increasingly common beyond its borders.  
While the U.S. invests in world-class research universities and technology startups are thriving, another, deeper and more complex challenge looms: K-12 science education is at a crossroads. It has been nearly 20 years since we addressed how science is taught in K-12 classrooms. It’s been nearly a full generation since schools revamped how they educate young people about science. Think of how much has changed in that time. In the classroom alone we’ve gone from chalkboards to smart boards; we communicate through disappearing photos and messages; online dating is now just as common as meeting someone in the ‘real world’; we’ve landed on Mars, multiple times — indeed space flight is now being privatized and commercialized — yet  our children, the first fully connected generation of digital natives, are sitting with science textbooks that have barely registered the demise of VCR-era technology. Efforts such as the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), developed by thousands of people across 26 lead states working in broad-based teams that included scientists, educators, parents, business leaders, and in some cases even students, aim to change all that. It’s about time, too.
Increased — and smarter — investment in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education programs is a path we must rally around. People with expertise in STEM drive the innovation economy with ideas that generate new companies, create entire industries — even transform the world as we know it. Employers recognize the value of STEM workers but cannot find them today, and a large number of STEM jobs go unfilled. A study by Burning Glass Technologies, a workforce and human resources technology firm, found that there are twice as many STEM jobs as there are qualified graduates. And average salaries for these jobs are significantly higher than national averages.
Then why do these jobs continue to remain vacant? One reason is these workers need better training earlier. In many cases, they need a solid foundation in STEM education starting in the earliest grades.  We often talk about the relationship between practice and success when it comes to excelling in a sport or perfecting an art, but we forget that the same logic applies to the sciences. When students spend more time exposed to a rigorous science curriculum, they, in turn, will gain more opportunities and confidence to excel professionally and personally.
The leaders in the STEM fields are not the only beneficiaries of a strong education in science and math. With each passing decade, a growing number of careers require a sophisticated understanding of concepts traditionally linked to STEM fields. From marketing to trading and journalism to retail management, it’s difficult to find an industry unaffected by computer science today. 
Beyond the concern of employment looms the larger matter of thriving in society. Conversations with your doctor require some understanding of medical science. You can better understand your retirement plan by knowing math concepts.  Make a simple home renovation, and you’ll become versed in basic engineering. The question is no longer, “When will I ever use this stuff?”  but rather, “When will I use it next?”
Having an educational foundation built on STEM has opened so many doors for me in my life. I have worked both on Wall Street and as an entrepreneur — both of which would not have been possible without the early education I received and the support of an older brother who made a special effort to get me excited about science early on. For girls especially, it is critical that teachers and family stir excitement about these courses and truly help them discover all of the doors STEM can open for them. 
As a country, we cannot rest on our laurels. We must rally behind this cause and educate the next generation to compete in the global economy — and lead the way to new, great innovation.   
About the Author: Sonpreet Bhatia is Co-Founder, Chief Product and Technology Officer of MobileROI. She has extensive experience in technology architecture, new media and in leading teams that develop large-scale, real-time systems.

Community college partners with agribusiness

This is a press release from CHS and Inver Hills Community College

Inver Grove Heights, MN - August 6, 2014 | Inver Hills Community College is partnering with global agribusiness CHS and the CHS Foundation to launch the Agricultural Sciences Career Pipeline Program, a new statewide educational and career pathway initiative for middle and high school students.

Funded by a $250,000 grant from the CHS Foundation, the program will introduce thousands of students from across Minnesota to career opportunities in the agricultural sciences. The program opens a pathway for students to complete an associate of science degree at IHCC and then transfer to the Agricultural Science bachelor of science program at the University of Wisconsin, River Falls, or a similar program at another four-year institution.
The Agricultural Sciences Pipeline Program has three components for middle school, high school and postsecondary students:
• Aspire: Agricultural Sciences Road Show
• Accelerate: Agricultural Sciences Academy
• Advance: Agricultural Sciences College and Career Training
Christina Royal, Ph.D., provost/vice president of academic affairs and interim dean of STEM at Inver Hills Community College, pointed out that many students have difficulty discerning clear pathways between their programs of study and opportunities in the labor market. Giving students the means to pursue high-demand careers, especially in science-related fields, significantly improves the ability of the U.S. workforce to compete globally.
“Meeting this challenge is particularly important in agriculture and food resources,” Royal said in a statement. “Programs like the Agricultural Sciences Career Pipeline help prevent a shortfall of graduates prepared to work in these priority industries.”
CHS is a leading global agribusiness, owned by farmers, ranchers and cooperatives across the United States.


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