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Miaoulis Testifies Before U.S. Senate on Building a Competitive Workforce

June 02, 2010

In May 2010, four years after his first appearance, Museum of Science president and director Ioannis Miaoulis was invited back by Senator John D. Rockefeller IV (D-WV) to testify May 6 before the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee at a hearing entitled, "America Wins When America COMPETES: Building a High-Tech Workforce."

Congress passed the America COMPETES Act in 2007 to increase the nation's investment in R&D and in STEM education. The landmark legislation was driven by the National Academies report, "Rising Above the Gathering Storm."

"K-12 engineering education will catalyze the development of a highly skilled STEM workforce necessary to insure our global competitiveness and national security," stated Miaoulis. "Unfortunately, the requisite funding did not materialize to make all these valiant programs and promises come true. My concern is that very little was done in the K-12 STEM education space and even less was done for informal science education."

He also noted that four years ago, the conversation was only about math and science and he was pleased to hear many senators emphasize the importance of engineering education in schools. Miaoulis shared a number of positive developments in this area with the committee.

Miaoulis thanked committee members Senators Maria Cantwell, Amy Klobuchar and Olympia Snowe for cosponsoring S. 3043, the Engineering Education for Innovation Act, and encouraged the panel to consider incorporating this bill in the America COMPETES reauthorization. He also emphasized the important role of science museums in STEM education and made a number of other agency specific recommendations.

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The Museum of Science, Boston

  1 Science Park, Boston, MA 02114  phone: 617-723-2500