In honor of its recent 50th anniversary, Montgomery County Community College received $25,000 from PECO on April 7, 2015, for 50 scholarship awards to students to support their education in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
“As we conclude the celebration of the College’s 50th anniversary, we look ahead to ensure the continued success of our current and future students,” said Dr. Karen A. Stout, president. “The growth and competitiveness of our country’s economy requires an educated, skilled workforce in high-demand STEM career fields, and as a result, we have strengthened our STEM program to provide more opportunities to engage students through hands-on learning experiences both on campus and through community partnerships. PECO’s generous donation will help our STEM students with their financial needs and further support their achievements.”
The scholarships will help high-achieving STEM students—including veterans, active duty military or reservists, single parents, women, minorities and nontraditional students—defray the cost of tuition, textbooks, lab supplies, technology fees and other program-related costs.
For Computer Science major and Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society member, Victor Hall, the scholarship will help him pursue his passion for writing code, particularly for electronic game and simulation design. While attending classes at MCCC, Hall hopes to participate in the QuadForge Undergraduate Research Program and wants to pursue internships in his field. Upon graduation, he plans to continue his education at the University of Pennsylvania’s College of Engineering studying Digital Media Design.
“I am thankful to receive the PECO STEM scholarship,” Hall said, noting that this will help him to pay for tuition and avoid accruing debt. “This award has inspired me to continue to think big about my education and potential.”
MCCC’s STEM programs integrate the key areas of experiential learning, professional development, connections with local businesses and academia, and direct access to defined college and career pathways.
“Thanks to the generosity of PECO, students in the STEM programs can build solid mathematical and scientific foundations that will stabilize their future pathways. Through STEM courses, students become familiar with scientific methodology and analytical skills that are critical in today’s STEM related workforce,” said MCCC’s Dean of STEM Dr. David DiMattio.
In the Engineering program, for example, the College immerses students in a research and development experience with its QuadForge Undergraduate Research Program in which students, using open-source materials, create and develop unmanned aerial vehicles equipped with computers, WiFi and 4G communications, high-definition video recording and embedded electronics with full weatherization.
As an ongoing initiative, the College continues to build relationships with STEM partners to provide more opportunities for students. The College is part of the Northeast Biomanufacturing Center and Collaborative (NBC2) that consists of 22 industry partners from nine states and 14 education partners from 10 states. In recent years, NBC2 received three National Science Foundation grants to implement outreach programs and create a standardized biomanufacturing textbook.
For more information about the College’s STEM programs, visit mc3.edu/academics/areas-of-study/stem.
~ by Diane VanDyke