Meehan Tours STEM Center at DCCC, Touts Important Role of Education in Growing Nation’s Economy
Says funding of science, technology, engineering and mathematics education must be priority
DREXEL HILL, PA – Today, Pat Meehan toured Delaware County Community College’s new STEM Complex, a state of the art facility that enhances the college’s ability to provide world-class educational programs in the areas of science, technology, education, and math. During the tour, Meehan expressed his strong support for continued federal and state funding in these educational areas. “We need to do a better job of providing students with the skills and knowledge in the fields of science, technology, education and math to prepare them for the changing demands in the workforce,” said Meehan. “The United States needs to invest in education in these critical areas in order to compete in the global economy and prevent jobs in these fields from being shipped overseas.” Pat spoke with Dr. Jerome Parker, President of Delaware County Community College, and Kathleen Breslin, Vice President of Institutional Advancement, about the educational programs the college offers in the future-growth fields of high-tech manufacturing, skilled machine working, and other areas. Dr. Parker noted that the American economy is projected to demand twice as many college educated workers than currently exist in the workforce. Only 30 to 35 percent of the U.S. workforce have earned Associates Degrees or higher, with many policy experts projecting that new economic demands will require that level be raised to 60 to 70 percent of the workforce. Reports prepared by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) compared the mathematical and science achievement of U.S. students with those in other nations. On the international scale, students in the United States ranked 24 out of 29 in the area of mathematics and 21 out of 30 in the field of science. Similarly, the 2007 ACT College Readiness Report found that only 43 percent of graduating seniors are ready for college math and only 27 percent are ready for college science. Meehan praised Delaware County Community College for making an investment and commitment to enhancing STEM education on the college level, calling the college’s STEM Complex and STEM Center – which opened in January 2010 — models for other colleges around the country. But Meehan also said the nation needs to do a better job of focusing on science, mathematics and engineering in K-12 programs. “If we can get students interested in STEM at an early age, it will encourage them to continue into careers in these fields which will allow them to be the innovating minds of the future,” said Meehan. “Students with a strong STEM background will lead the nation to new breakthroughs in fields ranging from energy to defense, creating new industries that will generate jobs well into the future. This is vital to our global economic competitiveness, as well as creating a better world for future generations.”
About Pat Meehan
A former U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and the former District Attorney of Delaware County, Pat Meehan has a proven record of rooting out government waste and corruption, prosecuting tough criminal cases, and implementing innovative new programs to make our communities safer. As U.S. Attorney, Meehan helped coordinate the region’s terrorism preparedness and response, held manufacturers responsible for illegally discharging hazardous materials into the region’s waters, and established a group to crackdown on predatory lending. Pat, his wife Carolyn and their three sons Patrick, Jack and Colin, reside in Drexel Hill, Delaware County. For more information, please visit www.meehanforcongress.com.