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The United States National Science Foundation recently announced that it will be funding a regional STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) Education Grant entitled “National Science Foundation – Advance Technological Education (NSF-ATE): Partnership for Advanced Marine and Environmental Science Training for Pacific Islanders.” Supported by nine-hundred-thousand dollars ($900,000) in funds over three (3) years, the grant will enhance the marine & environmental science education at the following five (5) community colleges in the Pacific islands: American Samoa Community College, the College of Micronesia – FSM, the College of the Marshall Islands, Northern Marianas College, and Palau Community College.
The project will support curriculum development, professional development of college faculty, internships & field experiences for students, and strengthen the scientific infrastructure of the participating learning institutions. The focus will be on island ecosystems and climate change science. Activities will include the expanded use of new tools & technologies. The grant will also provide support for student internships and research experiences.
Two (2) of the workshops for training faculty and students will be held at the Palau International Coral Reef Center (PICRC). PICRC has hosted past workshops that support this program in regional capacity development. Principal investigators include PCC President Dr. Patrick U. Tellei (a former chairman of the PICRC Board), Ms. Vernice Yuzi (Associate Professor of Science at Palau Community College), and Dr. Bob Richmond (Kewalo Marine Lab at the University of Hawaii). Both Ms. Yuzi and Dr. Richmond are present members of the PICRC Board. Current PICRC Board Chairman Mr. Noah Idechong and PICRC Chief Executive Office (CEO) Dr. Yimnang Golbuu have also provided key leadership in obtaining the funds for this program.
Dr. Richmond stated, “PICRC and PCC have been outstanding leaders and partners in supporting this regional training program, without which we would not have had the success that allows continued funding.”
Over a thousand students from the Pacific islands have benefited from the support provided by NSF for regional community colleges.
You can access the PDF files of PCC's weekly newsletter archive here.Mesekiu News