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Congressman Filner Applauds SWC and the STEP Partnership


Serving California’s 51st Congressional District

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Congressman Bob Filner today announced that the National Science Foundation has awarded a grant of $1.9 million to fund the STEP (STEM Talent Expansion Program) Partnership of San Diego. The STEP Partnership seeks to improve cooperation and success within the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields, and it encompasses Southwestern College (SWC), San Diego City College and San Diego State University.

Dr. Raga Bakhiet, SWC Mathematics, Engineering, and Science Achievement (MESA) Program Director indicates that, “Southwestern College’s $370,000 share of the STEP award will allow our MESA Program to build on our best practices and empower us to empower our students.”  Kathy Tyner, Dean of the SWC School of Mathematics, Science, and Engineering added, “The funds will allow this excellent MESA Program to expand services to more students.”

Congressman Filner pointed out that, “This program makes the American dream possible for many students who are unsure how to pursue their goals. They are surrounded by other students who share similar goals and they receive encouragement and support from a diverse faculty and the scientific community. I am extremely pleased that we have the STEP Partnership in San Diego County, and I applaud the work of Southwestern College!”

The STEP Partnership creates a clear path from community college, to university education, to careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). The STEP Partnership also enhances efforts to help economically or educationally disadvantaged students excel academically, develop leadership skills and gain exposure to industry. Team internships are facilitated to provide students with skills for academic and workplace success, and ultimately to become part of the economic development of the region.

“This program is extremely important here in Southern California, because one of our greatest competitive advantages is leadership in the STEM industries. The STEP Partnership will help enhance this existing advantage and bring opportunity to disadvantaged students,” said Congressman Filner. “Those are values that we should all embrace!”

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