Letter Urges Presidential Advisors to Focus on Role of STEM Education

Carnegie Corporation of New York and other members of the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Education Coalition, sent an open letter (March 3, 2010) to the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) as the group continues its work on a report addressing a wide range of policies related to STEM education.

 As the country contends with the current economic downturn and prepares for a robust recovery, the letter asked that close attention be paid to the role STEM education plays in ensuring workforce competitiveness and outlined key principles for consideration. 

 PCAST is the group offering the highest level of independent science and technology advice to the President and to the federal departments. The advisers are senior executives drawn from industry, education and research institutions, and nongovernmental organizations. The establishment of this kind of advisory group follows a tradition that goes back to at least the Administrations of Dwight D. Eisenhower and Harry S. Truman.

The STEM Education Coalition letter was addressed to John Holdren, Eric Lander and Harold Varmus who serve as co-chairs of the Council. Holdren is Director, Office of Science and Technology Policy; Lander is President and Director, the Broad Institute; and Varmus, a Nobel Laureate, is President, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.