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NMSI Announces $22.5 Million Grant from Howard Hughes Medical Institute to Expand UTeach Program

Five-year grant will expand highly-successful UTeach program to 10 Leading Research Universities

PRESS RELEASE

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) today announced a new $22.5 million grant by Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI). The five-year grant from HHMI, one of America’s premier medical research institutions, will make it possible for NMSI to expand The University of Texas at Austin’s highly-successful UTeach program.

At an event Monday in Washington, D.C., White House Director of Science and Technology Policy John Holdren praised the grant;  “Research shows—and everyone who has been a student knows—that teacher quality makes a big difference in student achievement," said John P. Holdren, President Obama's science and technology advisor and Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. "That’s why the President made his all-hands-on-deck call to train 100,000 excellent STEM teachers in the next decade. And it’s why the White House is so pleased to see the commitments being made today, which promise to change the lives of countless students in the years to come.”

The grant will provide $20 million for expansion into 10 leading research universities and $1.25 million for UTeach to further develop curricula and assessment. HHMI committed an additional $1.25 million to offer course-based authentic research experiences to UTeach students through the HHMI Science Education Alliance. With the HHMI grant, the 10 universities are expected to produce more than 1,700 math and science teachers over the five-year grant period and nearly 18,000 math and science teachers by 2022. Universities will be chosen through a UTeach RFP Process. 

“This is going to transform the preparation of math and science teachers,” said Sara Martinez Tucker, President and CEO of NMSI. “By taking the UTeach program into 10 more research universities, we will be able to recruit some of the best and brightest students in our country into the teaching field.”

More than 6,000 students are currently enrolled in the UTeach program at 35 universities across the country, including the founding site at The University of Texas at Austin. The HHMI grant has the potential to greatly increase UTeach enrollment during the life of the grant.

"To remain globally competitive, this country must be better educated in science and math," said HHMI President Robert Tjian."Better teacher preparation and training is vital. Through our partnership with NMSI and UTeach, we are providing critical support that will enable talented undergraduates majoring in science and math to focus on becoming teachers."

The President’s Council on Science and Technology (PCAST) estimates that our country will need 100,000 more math and science teachers by 2020, just seven years from now. As a result of the current shortage, more than two-thirds of 5th- to 8th-graders in crucial middle-school years are being taught math by teachers without a mathematics degree or certificate, and 93 percent of those same students are being taught physical sciences by teachers with no physical science degree or certificate, according to the National Academies.  

The HHMI grant announcement Monday was followed by a roundtable discussion at the White House on the shortage of teachers in science, technology, engineering, and math fields. Discussion participants included Dr. Sean Carroll, Vice President for Science Education at HHMI; Sara Martinez Tucker, CEO of NMSI; Dr. John Holdren, Director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy; Michele Cahill, Vice President for National Programs and Director of Urban Education at Carnegie Corporation; and Dr. Michael Marder, Professor of Physics at The University of Texas at Austin and Co-Director of the UTeach program.

Through the cooperation of NMSI and UT Austin, UTeach has become a leader in addressing the nation’s need for a new teaching force of highly qualified instructors in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) subjects. UTeach enables students majoring in math, science, or computer science to receive both their subject matter degree and full teaching certification in four years at no extra time or cost. Since 2008, NMSI and the UTeach Institute have implemented the teacher preparation program in partnership with  The University of Texas at Austin, which first developed the UTeach program in 1997. 

More than 1,150 college students – and potential future teachers – have graduated from the UTeach program which has seen its enrollment more than quintuple in recent years. NMSI estimates that the graduates from the first cohort of 13 UTeach university sites alone will have taught more than four million students by the year 2020. An estimated 10,225 teachers will graduate by 2020 from the 35 universities currently participating, dramatically increasing the number of students and schools who will benefit.

About National Math and Science Initiative: NMSI, a non-profit organization, was launched in 2007 by top leaders in business, education, and science to transform math and science education in the United States.  NMSI has gained national recognition for training K-12 teachers across the country to inspire students to succeed in math, science and English classes as well as recruiting more college students to become dedicated math and science teachers through the UTeach program.  NMSI’s Advanced Placement program is increasing achievement in 462 schools in 18 states and the UTeach program is transforming teacher preparation in 34 universities in 16 states.

NMSI has received major funding support for its groundbreaking national initiatives from Exxon Mobil Corporation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation, with additional support from the Carnegie Corporation of New York. For more information, please visit www.nms.org. 

About Howard Hughes Medical Institute: HHMI is a nonprofit medical research organization that ranks as one of the nation’s largest philanthropies. HHMI plays a prominent role in advancing biomedical research and science education in the United States. Founded in 1953 by aviator and industrialist Howard R. Hughes, HHMI is headquartered in Chevy Chase, Maryland, and employs more than 3,000 individuals across the U.S. HHMI has an endowment of approximately $16 billion of which the Institute spent $800 million for biomedical research and distributed $74 million in grant support for science education in 2012.

*Advanced Placement and AP are registered trademarks of the College Board.



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