New Foothill College Center Focuses on Preparing More Students for STEM Careers

Silicon Valley Community College Is Committed to Developing STEM-Proficient Workforce

Feb 21, 2013, 05:00 ET from Foothill College

LOS ALTOS HILLS, Calif., Feb. 21, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Located in the high-tech heart of California's Silicon Valley, Foothill College [] will celebrate the opening of its new state-of-the-art Physical Sciences & Engineering Center (PSEC) Tuesday, Feb. 26, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the campus in Los Altos Hills.

The PSEC is dedicated to strengthening student mastery of science, technology, engineering and mathematics—STEM—through interdisciplinary teaching and applied learning. The facility is home to the Foothill College Science & Learning Institute (SLI) [], an innovative instructional model that draws on educational research and best practices to support successful teaching and learning of STEM-related content.

"The future of Silicon Valley's economy depends upon a workforce that is proficient in science, technology, engineering and mathematics," said Foothill College President Judy C. Miner, Ed.D. "To fill the jobs that make up our region's unique economy, Foothill College must educate a wide range of students to succeed in STEM-related subjects. Moreover, we need to help our students develop critical-thinking and problem-solving skills, and encourage communication, collaboration, creativity and innovation to enable them to fill the jobs of the future."

A key goal of the SLI is to increase the university-transfer rates of community college students who are studying STEM subjects, and develop a STEM workforce that is prepared for jobs in computer science, nanotechnology and renewable energy systems.

"The Foothill College SLI instructional model is a key part of our goal to deliver better educated students into the Silicon Valley workforce," said Physical Sciences, Math & Engineering Division Dean Peter Murray, M.S. "In addition to increasing the university-transfer rates of students studying STEM subjects, the SLI will develop a STEM workforce that is prepared for Silicon Valley job openings in nanotechnology, renewable energy solutions, computer and network sciences, bioengineering and other critical fields."

The SLI is strengthened by its partnerships with such organizations as the Gates' Foundation Global Skills for College Completion, Carnegie Foundation's Statway Project, National Science Foundation's STEMWay and Nanotechnology projects, and award-winning campus programs such as Math My Way.

The PSEC cost approximately $41.6 million, and was funded by a capital improvement bond approved by voters in the Foothill-De Anza Community College District.

For more information, access or call (650) 949-7258.

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SOURCE Foothill College