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SB Receives $1.5M Award to Enhance Science Education

Keith Sheppard (left) and David Bynum

Stony Brook has received a four-year, $1.5 million grant from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) to enhance science education. The award will be led by Professor of Biochemistry and Cell Biology David Bynum, also founder and director of the Center for Science and Mathematics Education (CESAME). HHMI, the largest private funder of science education in the nation, invited 197 research universities to submit proposals and selected 50 institutions to receive a total of $70 million.

With this funding, CESAME will create undergraduate courses such as the Laboratory in Cancer Genetics, strengthen relationships with Cold Spring Harbor and Brookhaven National Laboratories, develop a partnership with the Center for Communicating Science in the School of Journalism, bring students from high-needs school districts into Stony Brook labs, work with science teachers from across the State to bring state-of-the art science into the schools, create new opportunities for professional development for postdoctoral fellows, and provide funded research opportunities for students in the University’s newly created Ph.D. program in science education.

“I am delighted that Stony Brook University has received this highly prized award,” said Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D. “It is an opportunity to provide first-rate science education and research experiences for our students and a recognition of our ability to continue to innovate and develop new opportunities”

“Having strength in the sciences plus the only doctoral program in science education on Long Island, we are attracting outstanding talent into our 2010 class,” said Keith Sheppard, Director of the Ph.D. program and Associate Director of CESAME. “The strongest of these students will be awarded HHMI fellowships to assist them in developing strategies to improve science education in New York State and the nation.  This is exactly the impact we want to make with our program and the Center.”

“This grant, which we have received from HHMI since 1994, demonstrates the tangible commitment of HHMI and Stony Brook to our efforts,” said Bynum. “We have now received more than $ 20 million in external funding and have created science education programs from pre-K to the postdoctoral levels. We are well on the way to becoming a global leader in science education.”

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