Four Ohio Higher Ed Institutions Awarded National Grant to Bolster STEM Programs

COLUMBUS, Ohio (2013-12-18) — 

Ohio Board of Regents Chancellor John Carey today announced that Ohio has been awarded a technical assistance grant to help four institutions of higher learning bolster their science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs. The non-monetary grant will provide assistance and guidance to Central State University; a partnership between North Central State Community College and The Ohio State University – Mansfield; and Shawnee State University, and will complement the ongoing work in this area for Ohio. Today’s announcement is part of Governor Kasich’s commitment to having an Ohio workforce that is prepared for the jobs of the global economy. 


“Continuing to ramp up our focus on the sciences means Ohioans will have the skills to take advantage of the rising demand for scientists, technology experts, engineers and mathematicians. It also means that Ohio will be able to more effectively compete against other states for jobs requiring these skills,” said Tracy Intihar, director of the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation. “We have some of the finest higher education institutions in the country, and continuing to align their efforts with the needs of job creators will only create more valuable opportunities for Ohioans.” 


Ohio is one of five states to receive a Complete College of America Award from the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust to help select schools bolster their STEM degree programs. The four Ohio schools will receive training to help them strengthen their STEM programs and design pathways to ensure students who sign up for these programs can get into the required courses, graduate on time and receive assistance in finding employment in their fields upon graduation.


“This award speaks to the visionary leadership of Governor Kasich and the Ohio Board of Regents, as well as their unwavering commitment to college completion,” said Complete College America President Stan Jones. “This ambitious plan will lead to more high-skilled, high-wage Ohio jobs by dramatically increasing the number of students with valuable STEM degrees. I’m confident that these efforts will serve as a blueprint for the rest of the country.”


During the two-year grant period, the four campuses will develop STEM completion goals and analyze local STEM labor markets. This will contribute to state-level plans for improving college training needed to support Ohio’s workforce development in these fields.The Board of Regents will serve as the project’s coordinating agency.


“The four campuses selected have shown great leadership in embracing this effort. The leadership of each of these institutions is deeply committed to establishing reforms that improve student achievement in STEM fields, and maximize the in-depth technical assistance provided by this grant,” Chancellor Carey said. “We look forward to this partnership and thank them for their commitment to Ohio’s students.” 

“We are thrilled Ohio has committed to help develop a set of high-impact, evidenced-based strategies to improve STEM instruction and opportunities for its college students,” said Rich McKeon, program director of the Helmsley Charitable Trust’s Education Program. “Working with Complete College America, these higher education institutions in Ohio, as well as several additional universities and colleges across the other states involved in this initiative, will build vital frameworks for states throughout the country to address our nation’s urgent and increasing demand for skilled STEM graduates.”

This initiative connects a number of Governor Kasich’s top priorities. It helps focus higher education on increasing college completion in high-demand jobs, and prioritizes the strategies identified by Governor Kasich’s Office of Workforce Transformation to better align education and training to meet the workforce needs and to reform the workforce system. With the shift to funding colleges for student completions, this initiative will provide research-proven approaches to increase student success. 

Complete College of America (CCA) is a national nonprofit organization working with states to significantly increase the number of Americans with quality career certificates or college degrees. Ohio is an alliance member state of CCA. The grant announced today is made possible through funding support to CCA from the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust.

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Jeff Robinson                                                                                                                                                       Office: 614.752.9487