Remarks in response to Gov. Branstad's speech announcing the Governor's STEM Advisory Council -- July 26, 2011

Thank you Governor Branstad. I applaud your leadership and that of the Lieutenant Governor in establishing the Governor’s STEM Advisory Council. I am honored to serve and look forward to working with you and the Lieutenant Governor and the entire council. The goals before us are very challenging. We know the future success of our children and our state depend on achieving the goals you have set, and I pledge my commitment to work toward attaining these goals. 

A little more than three years ago the Iowa General Assembly and the Board of Regents established the Iowa Mathematics and Science Education Partnership which, is located at UNI. Under the very able leadership of Jeff Weld, who is with us today, we have worked with colleagues at the University of Iowa and Iowa State University to reach out to community colleges and the Pre K-12 schools.

IMSEP has developed innovative strategies to recruit highly qualified math and science teachers, and to enhance the skills of those already in the classroom. And most importantly, IMSEP's programs have inspired many elementary, middle school and high school students to begin to see themselves as future STEM educators and professionals. These initiatives form solid building blocks for us as we move forward.

It’s appropriate that we thank everyone involved with this successful initiative. Many of those people are with us today.

We will collaborate to build upon the work to date, and I will seek the insights and wisdom of each member of the Council and the public at large. I'm confident our efforts will greatly increase the number of inspired, successful STEM students, teachers and professionals who will lead the economic development of this state's future.

Once again, I'd like to thank Governor Branstad, and Lt. Governor Reynolds and their team, for their leadership and for making STEM a high priority in this state.

Gov. Branstad signs Executive Order 74; creates Governor’s STEM Advisory Council