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Harrisburg University Receives $250,000 Grant from Keck Foundation

Harrisburg University of Science and Technology has received a $250,000 grant from the Keck Foundation to implement an effort to support and sustain college-level science education reform across 17 states of the western region of the United States.

 
PRLog - Feb. 29, 2012 - HARRISBURG, Pa. -- A model for reforming science education with roots in central Pennsylvania is westward bound, thanks to a new grant from the W.M. Keck Foundation.

Harrisburg University of Science and Technology has received a $250,000 grant from the Keck Foundation to implement an effort to promote, support and sustain college-level science education reform across 17 states of the western region of the United States.

“This grant allows us to take the approach for science education underway in Harrisburg and expand it to involve 21 other institutions of higher learning across 17 states,” says Wm. David Burns, executive director of the National Center for Science and Civic Engagement (NCSCE) at Harrisburg University.

The grant will be used to implement the initial launch of the Science and Civic Engagement Western Network (SCEWestNet), which is based on Science Education for New Civic Engagements and Responsibilities (SENCER) program within the NCSCE.

“Thanks to this funding, we can support an ever-growing community of faculty, students and academic leaders to improve undergraduate science, technology, engineering and mathematics education by connecting learning to critical civic questions,” says Burns.

Two established SENCER Centers of Innovation (SCI) (SCI-West at Santa Clara University and SCI-Southwest at Texas Woman’s University) will anchor SCEWestNet. The SCIs will work with experienced SENCER leaders in the West to plan an effective set of seven regionally localized organizational units or network nodes. These seven nodal partners, each working with three new institutions in their area, will work with the SCIs to scale up science education reform efforts:

·         Alaska (University of Alaska Fairbanks)
·         Washington & Oregon (Seattle University)
·         California, Nevada, & Arizona (Santa Clara University)
·         Montana, Idaho, & Wyoming (University of Montana)
·         Utah, Colorado, & New Mexico (Brigham Young University)
·         Hawaii (Kapiolani Community College)
·         Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma, & Louisiana (Texas Woman’s University)

“Harrisburg, in effect, will play an even larger role in strengthening student learning and interest in the STEM fields and contribute to achieving significant, lasting science education reform,” says Burns.  “We are connecting improved STEM learning with overcoming some of the most significant challenges facing our democracy today."  

A part of Harrisburg University since 2004, SENCER receives funding through the National Science Foundation.  More information on SENCER is found at www.SENCER.net

The W. M. Keck Foundation was established in 1954 in Los Angeles by William Myron Keck, founder of The Superior Oil Company. One of the nation’s largest philanthropic organizations, with assets of more than $1.2 billion, the W.M. Keck Foundation supports outstanding science, engineering and medical research and undergraduate education. For more information, please visit: www.wmkeck.org.

Founded in 2001 to address Central Pennsylvania's need for increased opportunities leading to careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields, Harrisburg University offers 24 undergraduate and 35 graduate programs. The University is an innovative and ambitious private institution that produces graduates who provide increased competence and capacity in science and technology disciplines to Pennsylvania and the nation. Harrisburg University ensures institutional access for underrepresented students and links learning and research to practical outcomes. As a private University serving the public good, Harrisburg University remains the only STEM-focused comprehensive university located between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

For more information on the University's demand-driven undergraduate, graduate and certificate programs in applied science and technology fields, call 717.901.5146 or email, Connect@HarrisburgU.edu

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Established in 2001 to address Central Pennsylvania’s need for increased opportunities for study leading to careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields, Harrisburg University is an innovative and ambitious private institution.

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