Positioning the United States for Scientific and
Technological Leadership and for Workforce
Productivity in the Twenty-First Century
"Education has been at the heart of America's progress for over 200
years. Let us pledge to give our children the best education in the
world, and the support they need to build strong futures, higher
standards in our schools, more choices, and the opportunity for all
Americans to go on to college."
Science, mathematics, engineering, and technology today permeate the
classroom, the home, the boardroom, manufacturing, services, and the
entertainment world. The information revolution, spawned by striking
scientific and technological advances, has triggered profound social and
economic changes throughout the world, resulting in an intensely
competitive global marketplace, with prime job opportunities
increasingly available only to those with technical and critical
thinking skills. The degree to which our nation prospers in the
twenty-first century will depend upon our abilities to develop
scientific and technical talent in our youth, to provide lifelong
learning to a well-educated workforce able to embrace the rapid pace of
technological change, and to raise the level of public scientific and
responsibility of government in human resource development is to
strengthen America's educational system, from grade school through
graduate school. Our institutions of learning - schools, two- and
four-year colleges, and universities - assume a central role in a
knowledge-based economy. Access to these institutions must be achievable
for all those with talent and commitment. In addition, all children,
irrespective of socioeconomic background, must have the physical,
cognitive, social, and emotional development that is a prerequisite for
effective learning. Quality of education and equality of educational
opportunity are central to our political future as well as to producing
the workforce needed to maintain American leadership in the next century.
observations apply across the educational spectrum, mathematics,
science, and technology education acquire increased importance in the
information age. The recently released results of the Third
International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS), cosponsored by
of Education and the National Science Foundation
(NSF), show that we need to upgrade American students' knowledge and
skills in these subjects. In comparison with counterparts in 40 other
countries, American eighth grade students performed about average -
slightly below in math, slightly above in science - and far behind the
leaders. The study points to the need for curricula focused on
developing problem-solving ability and analytical reasoning, the very
skills needed for a changing, technology-dominated workplace. The
commitment to rigorous content and performance standards embodied in the
2000 legislation remains the key to both quality and equality. In
addition, the diffusion of information technology into the classroom
will, over time, better match instructional technique with the
twenty-first century work environment. These initiatives are part of
government's responsibility to create the prospect of a bright future
for each of our children.
In the final
analysis, the Federal government can foster human resource development
only in partnership with teachers, workers, state and local government,
academia, and business. Indeed, much of the leadership will necessarily
come from those ranks. The Administration simply seeks a shared
commitment to this crucial investment in our collective future - quality
and equality of educational opportunity.
Maintaining leadership across the frontiers of science and producing the
finest scientists and engineers for the twenty-first century are
principal goals of this Administration's science and technology
policies. The American higher education system is justifiably envied for
its excellence in advanced training in science and engineering.
The tight weave
of research and education that exists in our research universities,
fostered by bipartisan support for half a century, has served the nation
exceptionally well. It is our responsibility to maintain strong,
competitively awarded, basic research programs at colleges and
universities to provide both new knowledge and new scientists and
engineers ready to contribute to all sectors of the economy.
Administration is also committed to furthering study and research abroad
by our scientists and engineers. In recent decades, the United States
has been the world's leading host of international students and
researchers. As other nations advance on the frontiers of science and
technology, our scientists and engineers must keep abreast of
international scientific developments to sustain our world-class
research universities remain unmatched, there have been numerous
indications that stress on these institutions is increasing. The sources
of stress are varied, reflecting the broader societal transformations
affecting many institutions. Given the importance of the research
universities and of the strong university-government partnership aimed
at advancing science and technology in the national interest, the
Administration is heeding a call from the
President's Committee of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST)
for a government-wide policy and administrative review of the
partnership. That partnership - extending deep into the past century,
when the Land Grant universities were founded - has been transformed
over the last half century into the core element of our world-leading
science and technology enterprise.
task force convened under the auspices of the
National Science and
Technology Council (NSTC) will: (1) identify major stresses in the
areas of research, education, and administrative regulations; and (2)
determine what the Federal government's role should be in addressing
issues raised by this examination. The task force findings and
recommendations will be presented in the summer of 1997.
The study may
also review the mechanisms used to support graduate students, since the
Federal government supports 20 percent of those enrolled in U.S.
institutions. Since the late 1960s, the form of graduate support has
shifted significantly from fellowships and traineeships, to research
assistantships. Each of these mechanisms vests responsibility for the
graduate training experience in different system participants. The
portability of fellowships is attractive to the recipients, while
assistantships delegate responsibility for the graduate research
experience to faculty principal investigators. Traineeships provide
funds to departments or programs with the expectation that a cadre of
faculty will share responsibility for training new Ph.D.s, typically in
emerging interdisciplinary research specialties or in areas of national
need as identified by Federal agency missions. The optimal mix for
developing the nation's scientific and engineering human capital needs
to be revisited.
As we work to
develop the finest scientists and engineers for the twenty-first
century, human resources policy must move beyond simply the supply and
demand of personnel and address the composition of the science and
engineering workforce. Achieving diversity throughout the ranks of the
scientific and technical workforce presents a formidable challenge; the
number of women and minorities in science and engineering, relative even
to professions such as medicine and law, remains low. We need to draw
upon the full talent pool.
In most science
fields, women receive a disproportionately smaller number of degrees
than men. By the early 1990s, women were awarded 28 percent of the
doctorates in science and engineering combined, with great variations by
broad field - one of every two awarded in the social and behavioral
sciences, one in four in the natural sciences, one in ten in
engineering. Predictably, this translates into under-representation of
women in the academic workforce, again with wide variations by field and
institution type. At research and doctoral institutions, women represent
35 percent of the non-science and engineering faculty. Among science and
engineering fields, women's faculty presence ranges from less than 6
percent in engineering and 8 percent in the physical sciences to over 20
percent in the biological and social sciences and over 40 percent in
psychology. The picture in 1993 is similar in comprehensive and liberal
arts institutions and in public and two-year institutions, except that
the women are better represented in all fields.
of racial and ethnic minorities and persons with disabilities leaves
much room for improvement and continued policy considerations. At all
degree levels in U.S. science and engineering, African-Americans,
Hispanics, and Native Americans remain under-represented. In any given
year of this decade, minorities awarded the Ph.D. in a science or
engineering field still number in the tens. The trend in minority
admissions and degree awards is not encouraging. Thus, the pool of
prospective faculty is not increasing fast enough.
science and engineering workforce hardly reflects the face of America.
But by 2010, about half of America's school-age population will be from
minority groups, emphasizing the importance to the nation of broader
participation in science and engineering careers. Expanding such
participation will require drawing on and developing talent at all
stages of educational preparation leading to advanced study. For
example, only a small fraction (perhaps one-eighth) of all high school
graduates have the mathematics and science preparation that would permit
advanced study in a technical field; for under represented minorities,
the fraction is only half as much.
The work of
individuals and organizations to inspire and mentor young people, and
offer role models is crucial. To recognize this, the annual Presidential Awards in Science, Mathematics, and
Engineering Mentoring were established in 1996. Ten individuals and
six organizations were honored for their outstanding mentoring efforts
that have encouraged significant numbers of minorities, women, and
disabled persons to succeed in these fields.
SUSTAINING WORKFORCE TRAINING
Workplace and societal changes driven by technological advances are, if
anything, accelerating. The increased value placed on acquiring,
manipulating, and communicating data and knowledge increasingly places
work not in a particular geographical location but wherever the
knowledgeable and skilled workforce resides. For example, the number of
telecommuters just in the United States has been growing at 15 percent
per year and now exceeds ten million. Industrial jobs are rapidly being
transformed into technology jobs. About half of California's workers are
now "wired," using information technology as a core part of their work.
In addition, analysis of major policy issues facing the citizenry,
whether in the arena of health care or social policy or national defense
or the environment, increasingly requires some familiarity with science
Administration, recognizing the importance of these issues to a vibrant
economy and society, has moved aggressively to raise each individual's
opportunity for success in our increasingly technology-based economy.
For example, the School-to-Work Opportunities Act promotes
improvements in the way students are prepared for careers, college, and
citizenship. The integration of school-based and work-based learning in
a school-to-work system makes learning relevant and enhances chances for
a successful transition from school to the workforce.
technology has revolutionized America's businesses. Sixty
percent of the new jobs in the year 2020 will require skills possessed
by only 22 percent of our workers today. The degree to which our nation
flourishes in the twenty-first century will rest upon our success in
developing a well-educated workforce able to embrace the rapid pace of
technological change. The FY 1998 budget includes a second installment
for the President's new five-year, $2 billion Technology Literacy Challenge
Fund to encourage States and communities, working with
private sector partners, to develop and implement plans for fully
integrating educational technology into their school criteria.
We must retrain
displaced workers if we are to fully develop our human resources in the
next century. A recent study in Pennsylvania demonstrated that for each
year of education provided through a special program for older displaced
workers, earnings increased by 7 percent. A major study of the Job
Training Partnership Act found that the Title II-A program for
economically disadvantaged adults increased earnings by 8 percent for
adult males and 15 percent for adult females, compared to
non-participants 30 months after program entry. The Administration has
"Middle Class Bill of Rights" to ensure that individual Americans
have the opportunity to upgrade their skills by returning to school or
by obtaining the training they need for new jobs.
Administration also is encouraging consolidation of employment and
training programs through grants to states to implement "one stop career
development centers" where American workers can discover new employment
opportunities, learn about new training programs, and apply for
financial assistance from such programs. In addition, the Administration
has proposed legislation - the G.I. Bill for America's Workers - to
consolidate education and training programs at national and local
levels, mandate the provision of training vouchers for dislocated
workers, and create a system of high-quality information on the
performance of education and training providers. The overall purpose is
to create a more effective, market-driven education and training system
postsecondary education - college, community college, and vocational
schools - has been improved by an expanded Pell Grant Program for needy
students, as well as through student loan reforms that reduce the
overall cost of college loans for both taxpayers and students. The
Direct Loan Program has a broad range of repayment options, including
income-contingent repayment, under which students may repay their loans
as a percentage of their income, without fear of defaulting on their
loan. The Administration has supported savings in both the guaranteed
and direct student loan programs, which have been enacted by Congress
and will save both taxpayers and students billions of dollars by the
year 2000 by reducing or eliminating subsidies to financial middlemen.
The Administration has also proposed a tax credit of $1,500 for the
first year of college, as well as a tax deduction of up to $10,000
annually per family for education and training expenses.
EXPANDING TECHNOLOGICAL LITERACY
Over the past decade, technology has pervaded virtually every aspect of
our daily lives. Yet the opportunities for American students to learn
about and from rapidly advancing technology are severely limited in our
classrooms. The U.S. Department of Education estimates that only 4
percent of schools had one computer for every five students and only 9
percent of classrooms were connected to the Internet. In schools with
large concentrations of low-income students, the percentages are even lower.
President Clinton challenged the nation's parents, teachers, and
business and community leaders to work together to ensure that all
American children are technologically literate by the dawn of the
twenty-first century. Such literacy constitutes the ability to use
computers and other technology that improves learning, productivity, and
performance. It is a "survival kit" necessary for success in the
twenty-first century. The Administration's
Technology Innovation Challenge Grants program, funded at $57
million in FY1997, encourages communities to form local partnerships to
develop and implement innovative applications of educational technology.
Federal funds leverage local resources by more than three to one.
$2 billion, five-year Technology Literacy Challenge Fund, first funded
in 1997, provides formula grants to states to stimulate public-private
sector partnerships focused on fully integrating technology into
teaching and learning. The Challenge Fund complements the Challenge
Grants and helps ensure that all students have the skills they will need
to succeed in the new century. All students if they are to perform well
across the curricula - in mathematics, reading and social studies - need
scientific and technological literacy. Today's interactive software and
online resources can be invaluable tools to help students learn and
Fund will help fulfill four Administration goals:
- All teachers will have the training and support to help their
students learn to use computers and the information superhighway.
- All students and teachers will have access to state-of-the-art
multimedia computers in their classrooms.
- Every classroom will be connected to the information superhighway,
making the nation's rich research and cultural resources available to students and teachers wherever they are located.
- Affordable software and online learning resources will be
high-quality, learner-centered, and related to the school's curriculum
and new standards.
Literacy Challenge Fund helps states and local communities create and
implement their own plans for integrating educational technology into
their school curricula.
leadership role, the Federal government will conduct the necessary
research and development to support teachers' professional development.
It will also play a critical role in helping to close the "digital
divide" between the technology "haves' and "have nots." Under the
leadership of Vice President Gore, the private sector, working with Tech Corps, a
national organization that supports private sector volunteers, assists
schools with integrating technology into classrooms. The U.S. Department
of Education's six
Regional Technology in Education Consortia that provide technical
assistance in the development and implementation of educational
technology, plan to connect every school in the nation's 15 Empowerment
Zones to the information superhighway.
agencies are making public investments in educational technology to
benefit our nation's schools. The Department of Commerce's
Telecommunications and Information Infrastructure Assistance Program
provides grants to develop telecommunications
networks for education and other nonprofit services. To meet rural
students' needs, the Department of Agriculture supports
telecommunications links to provide access to advanced courses. The
National Science Foundation funds programs to demonstrate how electronic
networks can best support
systemic education reforms and improve K-12
science and mathematics education. The National Aeronautics and Space
Administration in conjunction with the National Science Foundation, the
Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of the Interior, and the
National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration supports the Global Learning
and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) program. GLOBE
links students, educators, and scientists around the world through the
Internet to share collected data from their individual environmental
observations. These programs and others are helping our classrooms
resemble more closely the twenty-first century workplace.
IMPROVING K-12 EDUCATION
A key goal for the longterm is upgrading our entire system of K-12
education to meet the changing demands of the global marketplace. As
long ago as 1954, Walter Lippmann observed: "Our educational effort has
not been raised to the plateau of the age we live in... We must measure
it not by what would be easy and convenient to do, but by what it is
necessary to do in order that the nation may survive and flourish." The
technology and information revolution has raised the level of need to
yet another plateau, one where even classroom teaching tools must
incorporate the new technologies.
and citizenship needs of the twenty-first century require that our
students excel at the highest levels in math, science, reading, and
writing. We must mobilize the nation - our people and our technology -
to address the challenge of helping every child achieve basic literacy,
science literacy, and numeracy.
of our national commitment to meeting this challenge is widespread
adoption of challenging content and performance standards, the
concomitant development of teacher training and support systems, and
statewide systemic reform based on standards-based instruction. The
Department of Education's Goals 2000 provides grants for the
development of state standards and the implementation of comprehensive
reform in all 50 states. For example, the National Science Foundation
has advanced mathematics and science education reform through programs
such as the Statewide Systemic Initiatives
and the more recent Urban Systemic
Initiatives. These two NSF programs support 40 sites and serve over
25 million students. Both agencies' programs reflect a significant shift
of the Federal role toward helping to strengthen an entire system that
aligns content standards, teacher training, and student assessment
rather than focusing on categorical programs for defined populations.
Local and state flexibility on specific curriculum choices must be
Clinton and Vice President Gore believe that "all of us have a duty to
ensure that every child has a chance to take part in the new information
age." The President added that, "technological literacy must
become the standard in our country. Computers can enrich the education
of any child, but only if the child has access to a computer, good
software and a competent, g ood teacher who can help that child learn
how to use it. Preparing children for a lifetime of computer use is just
as essential today as teaching basic skills was a few years ago."
Administration wishes to be a partner in ensuring that quality
improvements are made nationwide and reflect the national need. For
example, while business is best suited to clarify the skills needed to
meet the demands of newly created jobs, academia is best suited to
clarifying the knowledge base needed for advanced study (e.g., through
appropriate mathematics and science admission standards).
INVESTING IN OUR FUTURE-RESEARCH FOR
LEARNING AND CHILD DEVELOPMENT
Our most important investments in human resource development are those
aimed at the biological, cognitive, social, and emotional development of
America's children. Our children carry our hopes for the future, and
preparing them for the twenty-first century clearly ranks among our most
important national priorities. The return on our investments in
education, such as those discussed above, will be maximized only through
other investments based on sound research that help our children's
readiness to learn.
the well-being of our children and families provide a mixed picture of
successes and shortcomings. Our national infant mortality rate is
declining rapidly and is at a record low, but it is still higher than in
many other countries. Our children's test scores in reading and science
are improving but still trail those of several other nations. Our school
dropout rate is unacceptably high, costing over $250 billion each year
in lost earnings. Our teenage pregnancy rate is declining slightly, but
is still the highest in the developed world. Our national vaccination
coverage is the highest ever, but in many areas less than 50 percent of
two-year-olds are adequately immunized. A similar picture of gains and
unmet goals exists with respect to youth violence, child poverty,
smoking, and substance abuse. Children who are poor and those from
minority groups are often at even greater risk of poor health and
education outcomes, making it especially urgent that we address the
needs of these populations.
Much of the
progress achieved in these and other areas grew out of critical research
efforts that have advanced our understanding of how children and youth
grow into healthy and productive individuals. Research has helped to
inform policy decisions and program development, track outcomes, and
identify strategies that work and those that do not. The Federal
investment in research has clearly paid dividends in terms of improved
outcomes for children and a healthier and brighter outlook for the
nation as a whole.
important achievements, there continue to be significant gaps in our
understanding of how children grow up to be healthy, well-educated, and
responsible members of society. Given the rapidly changing nature of our
communities and nation, strengthening Federal research on child and
adolescent development and expanding its role in shaping public policy
is especially crucial.
great deal of knowledge about young people has been gained from past
research in the social, behavioral, and life sciences, we clearly need
to better understand what enables children to grow up to be healthy and
active members of society. This research should focus on developmental
processes beginning before birth and extending through adolescence;
address the relationships among biological, cognitive, social, and
emotional aspects of development; distinguish minority from majority
populations and address influences of families, peers, schools,
communities, media, and social institutions on development; and
emphasize enhancing positive outcomes rather than just avoiding negative
ones. Examples of particularly important research opportunities that
will be explored in the coming years are:
- Influence of Families and Communities on Development.
Important questions include how communities can encourage an
adolescent's safe passage to adulthood and how families and
communities, as well as children, are being affected by major policy
innovations taking place at all levels of government.
- Health and Behavior. With increasing recognition of the major
impact of behavior on health, important research questions include what
approaches would help children adopt health-enhancing behaviors?
- Children and Environmental Hazards. With children facing a
wide array of environmental threats to their health, we must learn how
best to identify and respond to these threats.
- Learning and Intelligent Systems. New knowledge about the
brain processes involved in learning provides opportunities to study the
relationships among learning and intelligence and creativity, the use of
technology to assist children's ability to learn, and the role of
nutrition in influencing ability to learn.
- Policy Research. In this emerging field of research,
important questions include the combined effect of social policy changes
on child well-being and service delivery and data sources needed to
- Longitudinal Studies. The 1998 budget requests additional
funding for an
Early Childhood Longitudinal Study (ECLS), which is to provide a
comprehensive and reliable set of data that may be used to describe and
better understand children's preparation for school, key transitions
during their educational careers, their experience in kindergarten,
primary, and elementary grades, and how their experiences relate to their
likelihood of succeeding in school. The study would encompass both a
birth and kindergarten cohort.
follow-up studies of children provide the best means for assessing how
child development in "normal" conditions compares to what occurs in
adverse conditions, and how childhood and adolescent interventions can
best be targeted to the childhood antecedents of adult disease to
prevent or delay the onset of problems in adult life.
research must be linked to policy. The Administration will establish,
under the joint auspices of the Domestic Policy Council and the National
Science and Technology Council, a multi-agency working group to help
shape the Federal research portfolio on the health, education, and
well-being of American children to provide systematic research input to
policy development, and to assist in outcome evaluation. We owe this to
our children, our families, and our nation as a sound investment in the
IMPROVING THE PERFORMANCE OF U.S. STUDENTS IN
MATH AND SCIENCE
Third International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) compared
the academic performance of 500,000 students worldwide, including 40,000
Americans, at levels corresponding to U.S. grades four, eight, and
twelve. In November 1996, the eighth-grade results were released,
showing that among 40 other countries, U.S. students scored below the
international average in math and above the international average in
business and education recognize that the TIMSS results have serious
implications for the success of U.S. students and the nation's future
economic growth. Quantitative and problem-solving skills are
increasingly important in the technology-driven global marketplace.
the success of the five countries that outperformed the United States in
both math and science, including Singapore, Korea, Japan, the Czech
Republic, and Hungary? The TIMSS study found stark differences between
what the United States expects of its students compared to other
nations: the topics taught in the U.S. math curriculum for eighth
graders compare to the seventh grade level in leading countries. In
addition to less challenging expectations, U.S. curricula, classroom
teaching, and textbooks cover more topics but leave little time for
mastery and depth of understanding.
focused on math education in its comparison of teaching practices. What
researchers discovered, based on videotapes of classroom instruction, is
that U.S. teachers don't teach to America's own math standards. Unlike
many American students, Japanese students are trained to understand math
concepts and apply knowledge to solve real problems along with the
basics of arithmetic.
In both math
and science, TIMSS showed stronger and weaker areas of U.S. student
performance. In math, U.S. students scored better in the areas of
fractions and number sense, data representation, analysis, probability,
and algebra than in geometry and measurement. In science, U.S. students
scored better in earth science, life science, and environmental issues
than in chemistry and physics.
important TIMSS finding relates to recent efforts to ensure that girls
and boys have equal opportunities in math and science. The United States
was one of 11 countries in which there were no significant differences
between the performance of eighth-grade girls and boys in either math or
and Secretary of Education are committed to boosting achievement in math
and science so students will be prepared to successfully compete in the
global economy. To meet the challenges revealed in TIMSS, the Department
of Education and the National Science Foundation are working together
with communities and states, and the nation's math and science teachers
to share best practices to improve student achievement. The Education
Department is also developing four guides for school districts to use in
strengthening standards, assessment, curricula, and instruction. One
guide will enable local districts to administer the TIMSS test in their
own schools to find out how their students are performing in the context
of world-class math and science achievement.
The National Center
of Education Statistics plans to make TIMSS the most accessible
study ever. In July 1997, more data will be released showing
state-by-state student performance in eighth-grade math and science and
fourth-grade math (44 states are participating in this comparison).
Additional data will link student performance on the National Assessment
of Educational Progress with pe rformance on TIMSS.
Nations' Average Mathematics
Performance Compared to U.S.
NATIONS WITH AVERAGE SCORES SIGNIFICANTLY HIGHER THAN THE U.S.
NATIONS WITH AVERAGE SCORES NOT SIGNIFICANTLY DIFFERENT FROM THE U.S.
NATIONS WITH AVERAGE SCORES SIGNIFICANTLY LOWER THAN U.S.
Iran, Islamic Rep.
International Average = 513
Nations' Average Science Performance Compared to the U.S.
NATIONS WITH AVERAGE SCORES SIGNIFICANTLY HIGHER THAN THE U.S.
NATIONS WITH AVERAGE SCORES NOT SIGNIFICANTLY DIFFERENT FROM THE U.S.
NATIONS WITH AVERAGE SCORES SIGNIFICANTLY LOWER THAN U.S.
Iran, Islamic Rep.
International Average = 516
Latvia (LSS) indicates only Latvian-speaking schools were sampled
representing less than 65% of the population.
Note: Nations not meeting international sampling guidelines are shown in
Adapted from Mathematics Achievement in the Middle School Years.
1996 PRESIDENTIAL EARLY CAREER AWARDS FOR
SCIENTISTS AND ENGINEERS
The importance attached to producing outstanding young scientists and
engineers was demonstrated in December 1996 with the inaugural
Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers. Sixty
young scholars, most of them in the early part of their academic careers
combining research and education, were honored for their research
contributions, for their promise, and for their commitment to broader
societal goals. Nine Federal departments and agencies joined together in
nominating and selecting these young scientists and engineers. The
breadth of their research interests demonstrates that societal goals
spanning health, environmental quality, economic competitiveness,
national security, and the advancement of knowledge are being addressed
creatively by our brightest young scientists and engineers.
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Pina Fratamico, Agricultural Research Service - For innovative
research and design of a rapid and sensitive technique to detect E.
coli O157:H7 using specially treated magnetic beads to draw the
bacterium out of foods.
Barbara Gartner, North Dakota State University - For outstanding
research integrating plant growth and development, tree physiology and
biochemistry, forest ecology, and wood science for the purpose of
predicting wood quality variation.
Kenton Rodgers, Oregon State University - For outstanding
research on the role of metalloproteins in cellular signaling
specifically, elucidating how the heme iron-oxygen bond in hemoglobin
affects activity of certain nitrogen fixation genes in Rhizobium bacteria.
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
John Daniel, NOAA Environmental Research Laboratories - For
theoretical contributions to explaining stratospheric ozone depletion
and climate change issues and defining how the dynamics of the
atmosphere could influence the chemical composition to
cause temporary slow-downs in the upward trends of several gases.
Eric Cornell, NIST Physics Laboratory - For leading the effort
first demonstrating the quantum mechanical phenomenon of Bose-Einstein
condensation (BEC) by using laser cooling and trapping of rubidium atoms
to achieve high density followed by a sequence of evaporative cooling steps.
David Stensrud, NOAA Environmental Research Laboratories - For
significant advances in the understanding of meso- and synoptic-scale
weather systems by developing and applying innovative techniques for the
incorporation of new data in numerical mod els for weather forecasting.
Roland Pozo, NIST Computing and Applied Mathematics Laboratory -
For making significant contributions to the field of linear algebra
software development and object-oriented numerical software design.
DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
Andrea Bertozzi (Navy), Duke University - For research on
analysis of dynamical systems and for pioneering work on finite time
singularities in vortex patches.
Nesbitt Hagood (Navy), Massachusetts Institute of Technology -
For pioneering research achievements to adaptively control and analyze
structural vibrations, and the creation of active electronic control
Paul Laibinis (Navy), Massachusetts Institute of Technology - For
pioneering work in interfacial chemistry resulting in self-assembled
monolayers forming the basis of micro-patterned biosensor arrays.
Venkatakrishnan Selvamanickam (Air Force), Intermagnetics General
Corporation - In recognition of significant research and development of
novel processes for the fabrication of high temperature superconductors
for electric power and magnetic applic ations.
Peter Sercel (Army), University of Oregon - For outstanding
research innovation in experimental and theoretical studies of the
effects of quantum confinement in semiconductors.
Gail Kineke (Navy), University of South Carolina - For
significant interdisciplinary research on sediment mechanics, marine
geology, and physical oceanography, to advance the state-of-the-art in
DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
Shenda Baker, Harvey Mudd College and Los Alamos National
Laboratory - In recognition of research employing neutron scattering
measurements of solid-solid and solid-liquid interfaces to study and
improve the properties of advanced materials.
Richard Cairncross, University of Delaware and Sandia National
Laboratory - For outstanding contributions to the advancement of direct
simulation computational technology for manufacturing processes of
critical importance to the Weapons Complex.
John Hill, Brookhaven National Laboratory - For elucidating the
role of crystalline order in electron dynamics and of disorder in
magnetic phase transitions, and for development of magnetic and
inelastic x-ray scattering techniques in the study of condensed matter.
Philip Jardine, Oak Ridge National Laboratory - For research
integrating field and laboratory studies with theoretical concepts that
have advanced the understanding of nutrient cycling and contaminant
reactions and transport in unsaturated, heterog enous soils.
Christine Siantar, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory - For
innovative research in developing a new approach to the treatment of
cancer, enabling physicians to plan radiation treatments with pinpoint
accuracy, improving the ability to cure many forms of cancer while
avoiding damage to healthy tissue.
Michael Smith, Oak Ridge National Laboratory - For leading
astrophysics research in radioactive ion beam physics, and for
contributing to the collection and evaluation of nuclear reaction data
applicable to astrophysics phenomena.
DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS
Melissa Clark, VA Medical Center, Nashville, TN and Vanderbilt
University - In recognition of innovative basic research on the
molecular mechanisms of functional regulation of the xanthing
dehydrogenase gene which is important in tissue injury.
Joseph Cubells, VA Medical Center, West Haven, CT and Yale
University - For exceptional basic research concerning the molecular
genetics underlying chemical and behavioral differences observed in
individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia.
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
David Barnes, University of Arkansas - For innovative research
comparing the effects of mercury and insulin on hexose transport and
protein synthesis, and determining signal transduction pathways targeted
Keith Grasman, Wright State University - For significant research
on biomarkers for organochlorine-associated immunosuppression in
fish-eating birds of the Great Lakes, contributing information on
immunotoxicological effects, and new methods for identifying problem
sites and recovery.
Qing-Huo Liu, New Mexico State University - For innovative
research to the field of geophysical sensing using efficient numerical
simulations for environmental applications.
NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND
Dora Angelaki, University of Mississippi Medical Center - For
significant research advancement in investigating the adaptive
mechanisms of visual-vestibular interactions in the determination of
spatial orientation and movements in the weightlessness environment of
Christopher Chyba, Princeton University - For innovative research
studying whether Martian craters that exhibit fluidized ejecta blankets
are the result of impact melting of ice in permafrost or of the
liberation of existing underground aquifers.
Andrea Donnellan, Jet Propulsion Laboratory - To recognize
innovative use of data from continuous, permanent GPS sites and
three-dimensional models required to identify intervening faults and
stress which will contribute to understanding earthquake cycles and
assessment of regional earthquake risk.
Heidi Sosik, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute - For developing
an innovative combination of laser-based optical and fluorescence-based
assays to study important biological oceanographic processes.
Ellen Stofan, Jet Propulsion Laboratory - For contributions to
the scientific understanding of radar interpretation used on both the
Magellan and SIR-C data.
Kimberly Weaver, Johns Hopkins University - To recognize
significant contributions in x-ray studies to provide a solid test of
the "obscuration-plus-viewing angle" unified model hypothesis for
NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH, HHS
Ali Hemmati-Brivanlou, Rockefeller University - For significant
research in the field of neurobiology that has illuminated cellular
mechanisms controlling normal development of the nervous system, and for
setting the stage for studies to develop the capability to regenerate
Allison Doupe, University of California, San Francisco - In
recognition of landmark contributions to understanding the role of the
brain in the development of learning abilities and for pioneering and
innovative contributions in integrative neuroscience.
Paul Khavari, Stanford University - For innovative research using
the skin as a vehicle for gene therapy by the use of a topical agent
that allows inserted genes to be expressed and the effects to be
reversed in the event of an adverse outcome.
Aron Lukacher, Emory University - For major contributions to the
understanding of antiviral immunity, and innovative research on the
development of cellular immunity to polyoma virus-induced tumors in mice.
Deirdre Meldrum, University of Washington - For recognition of
innovative research utilizing a broad set of interdisciplinary
approaches to advance DNA sequencing technology.
Lee Ann Niswander, Sloan-Kettering Institute for Cancer Research
- For research leading to a better understanding of limb formation
during embryonic development, providing the basis for future studies
that will assist in the prevention of birth defects.
David Self, Yale University - For achievement in basic research
that advances the knowledge of mechanisms underlying drug abuse and
addiction through the innovative integration of molecular biological
techniques with behavioral, pharmacological, and biochemical methods.
Morgan Sheng, Massachusetts General Hospital - For outstanding
contributions to the field of neuroscience by conducting research
concerning the molecular basis of neuronal signaling and memory.
Mark Walter, University of Alabama, Birmingham - For conducting
highly successful research on the molecular structure of lymphokines and
providing new insight into the structure and function relationships of
cellular signaling proteins.
Keith Woerpel, University of California, Irvine - For
achievements in organic chemistry applied to the preparation of complex
molecules of biomedical importance, including new antibiotics for
combating infections in immunocompromised patients.
NATIONAL SCIENCE FOUNDATION
David Burke, University of Michigan - For outstanding research at
the interface of molecular genetics and engineering technology that
clarifies genetic factors in aging and lays the foundation for the next
generation of genetic-analysis equipment using silicon-microfabrication
Erick Carreira, California Institute of Technology - For major
contributions in synthetic organic chemistry, including the first total
synthesis of (+)zaragozic acid C, an enzyme inhibitor relevant to the
discovery of therapeutically useful cholesterol-lowering agents.
Fengshan Chen, Florida International University - For outstanding
research contributions to the simulation of advanced manufacturing
processes for design and real-time control of flexible manufacturing
Juan de Pablo, University of Wisconsin, Madison - To recognize
excellent research in equilibrium and nonequilibrium thermophysical
fluid properties involving atomistic modeling.
Peter Delfyett, University of Central Florida - For outstanding
engineering research contributions in ultrafast optics and photonic
Bonnie Dorr, University of Maryland - For outstanding
contributions to computer science and linguistics in the design and
implementation of natural language processing systems for machine
translation and foreign language tutoring.
Weinan E, New York University - To recognize innovative
applications of mathematics to the explanation of the behavior of
complex materials and fluids, including liquid crystals, polymers,
superconductors, and turbulent flows.
Marc Edwards, University of Colorado - For research achievements
in corrosion control, oxidation processes, and arsenic chemistry and
research on fundamental reactions controlling metal corrosion in
Mark Gluck, Rutgers University - For outstanding contributions to
understanding the cognitive neuroscience of human learning, by
evaluating computational models of neural networks that relate brain
mechanisms to emergent behaviors and integrating behavioral and
psychobiological approaches to animal and human learning.
Marilyn Gunner, City College of CUNY - For outstanding biophysics
research on the role of electrostatic forces in protein stability and
function and the coupling of electron and proton transfer events in
photosynthesis and in electron-transfer proteins.
Daniel Hess, University of South Florida - In recognition of
major contributions to fundamental research addressing pervasive issues
in the dynamics of mechanical and structural systems with friction.
Ruey-Jen Hwu Sadwick, University of Utah - To recognize
leadership in fundamental engineering research to enable practical
high-power, high-frequency electronic and optoelectronic systems.
Robert Kennedy, University of Florida - For outstanding research
in bioanalytical chemistry, including development of an
insulin-sensitive microelectrode that can detect secretions from single
cells and of rapid immunoassay techniques based on capillary
Michael Kremer, Massachusetts Institute of Technology - For
emerging work on the role of education and health policy in developing
nations and creative analysis of economic growth and economic
development on factors that affect divergent growth rates among
Charles Marcus, Stanford University - For innovative
investigations of the physics of electron conduction in the mesoscopic
regime, a physically and quantum mechanically constrained region
relevant to the development of atomic and molecular scale electronic
devices and to the understanding of neural networks.
Massoud Pedram, University of Southern California - In
recognition of outstanding contributions to computer-aided design
technology, especially in low power analysis and synthesis of integrated
circuits relevant to the development of portable infor mation systems.
John Sutherland, Michigan Technological University - For
excellence in research on the environment, machining, and applied
statistics, and for studies focusing on critical issues in
environmentally conscious manufacturing.
Todd Verdoorn, Vanderbilt University - In recognition of
outstanding innovative neuropharmacology research that advances
understanding of the structure and function of neuronal glutamate receptors.
Michael Wysession, Washington University in St. Louis - To
recognize excellence in research on the geophysics of the solid Earth,
especially for combining seismic imaging with geophysical constraints to
understand the dynamics of the complex boundary between the core and the
mantle of the deep earth.
John Yin, Dartmouth College - In recognition of achievement in
research on the dynamics of viral growth and adaption and their
potential to influence the design of efficient multi-molecular
recipients of the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Science,
Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring. At the White House in
September 1996, the honorees included ten individuals and six
institutions that have been exemplary in their encouragement of
minorities, women, and people with disabilities to pursue careers in
scientific and technical fields. President Clint on noted that they
would "serve as examples to their colleagues and will be leaders in the
national effort to train the next century's scientists, mathematicians,
1996 PRESIDENTIAL AWARDS FOR EXCELLENCE IN
MATHEMATICS, AND ENGINEERING MENTORING
Martha G. Absher, Duke University, Durham, NC
Howard G. Adams, National Institute on Mentoring, Georgia
Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA
Diola Bagayoko, Southern University, Baton Rouge, LA
Joaquin Bustoz, Arizona State University, Tempe,AZ
Carlos G. Gutierrez, California State University-Los Angeles, Los
Janet S. Herman, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA
Susan J. S. Lasser, Clemson University, Clemson, SC
Melvin B. Robin, Science High School, Newark, NJ
Walter S. Smith, University of Akron, Akron, OH
Richard A. Tapia, Rice University, Houston, TX
Columbia University Double Discovery Center, New York, NY
Dartmouth College Women in Science Project, Hanover, NH
National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, Inc. (NACME), New York, NY
New Mexico MESA, Inc., Albuquerque, NM
Oregon Graduate Institute of Science & Technology Saturday Academy Program, Portland, OR
University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD
AMERICA READS CHALLENGE
"We ought to commit ourselves as a country to say by
the year 2000, 8-year-olds in America will be able to pick up an
appropriate book and say, 'I read this all by myself.'"
On August 28, 1996, President Clinton, recognizing that children are our
nation's greatest asset and its future, announced the America Reads Challenge. Working
with parents and educators, this unprecedented initiative calls on all
Americans - schools, libraries, religious institutions, universities,
college students, the media, community and national groups, cultural
organizations, business leaders, and our nation's senior citizens - to
ensure that every American child can read well and independently by the
end of third grade. Some students need extra help beyond the classroom
to read well. Reading is a skill, in particular, that is developed not
only in the cla ssroom, but also in the community and in the home.
Challenge recognizes that 40 percent of America's fourth graders cannot
read as well as they should. While students today read, on average, as
well as ever, it is not good enough for the complexity of today's jobs
and society. Research shows that if students cannot read well by the end
of third grade, their chances for later success are significantly
diminished, including a greater likelihood of dropping out of school and
increased delinquent behaviors.
recognizes the value that parents and other concerned individuals in
local communities and the private sector can provide by tutoring and
mentoring. Teachers, libraries, and principals also play a key role in
strengthening reading in school and after school.
Challenge builds on the spirit of volunteer and community participation
in tutoring and mentoring. Furthermore, this reading challenge takes
advantage of the strength of AmeriCorps, Learn and Serve, the Senior
Corps, 100,000 college work-study students, and other community service
and community-based organizations throughout America.
There are five
major parts to the America Reads Challenge, which will be funded over
five years when Congress passes the legislation:
- America's Reading Corps. This heart of the program has
proposed funding of almost $2.5 billion. Nearly $1.5 billion in new
education investments will provide after-school reading specialists to
train tutors and provide supervision, and $1 billion from the National
Service budget will help recruit and organize the tutors. Together,
these funds will provide 30,000 reading specialists and coordinators who
will help mobilize one million tutors. These tutors, working with
reading teachers, principals, libraries, and community-based
organizations will provide individualized after-school, weekend, and
summer reading tutoring for more than three million children a year in
grades K-3 who want and need the extra help.
- Parents as First Teachers Challenge Grants. Three hundred
million dollars in grants will be available to national and regional
groups, as well as to local communities and organizations, to foster
effective programs to provide assistance to interested parents to help
their children become successful readers by the end of third grade.
Head Start Expansion. One million 3- and 4-year olds will be
reached through the expansion of Head Start programs.
Even Start Strengthening and Expansion. Additional investments
are bing made to expand efforts to strengthen teaching and learning
during the regular school day.
- Challenge to Private Sector to Work with Schools and
Libraries. Parents and private and nonprofit groups will be actively
encouraged to be a part of the President's America Reads Challenge as
they have been in Secretary of Education Riley's Partnership for Family
Involvement in Education and the summer READ*WRITE*NOW!
THE ROOTS OF EARLY LITERACY
Part of the groundwork for literacy skills is established by the time
the child enters kindergarten, but exactly how is this base acquired?
Recent research is persuading experts that a child's best preparation
for literacy is a very diverse and rich early language environment that
provides varied opportunities to learn about the world and a range of
topics through language.
"An hour spent
reading a child stories that stimulate interest in new topics and
provide an opportunity to learn the language for discussing them has
long-term value for the child," notes Harvard Graduate School of
Education researcher Catherine Snow. With colleagues David Dickenson and
Patton Tabors, Snow is analyzing contexts for language and literacy at
home and in the classroom. Their studies suggest the links between
children's learning at home and at school, and the ways in which these
two social contexts complement each other or overlap.
The basis for
"literacy" includes a range of areas of competency, including
vocabulary, and ability to conduct a sustained dialogue, and to assess
and respond to language through inference, integration of information,
and evaluation. Children gain such skills before they learn to read, and
it appears that the extent to which these skills are mastered is closely
tied to reading ability as the child advances through school. The act of
acquiring information and using language to express it equips children
for the task of reading: if you encounter a topic in a book and you've
encountered it verbally before, it is much easier to understand it and
to fit it into what you already know.
In a long-term
study of language and literacy development at home and school, the
researchers recruited 80 low-income subjects from
Head Start programs and other preschool and day care programs that
accept low-income students who pay by voucher. Despite their mutual
low-income status, the children's parents varied in their level of
education, and in their styles of imparting literacy skills to their
children through reading and daily discourse.
showed that one important factor for building vocabulary in
pre-schoolers is whether parents use "rare" words (such as "budget,"
"governor," or "oxygen") other than the 3,000 or so most common words.
The researchers found that children whose parents use a higher number of
rare words in family situations have larger vocabularies. Likewise,
parents who explain the new or difficult words enhance the child's
vocabulary and knowledge about the world. Informal situations such as
mealtime and free play also encourage language growth if they give rise
to intellectually challenging discussions.
Exposure to a
language-rich environment is so critical that it should go on in
whatever language the most interesting conversations can be held. For
families who are struggling to learn English as a second language and
cannot yet share information with their children in a rich and
stimulating way in their new language, Snow encourages adult family
members to converse with children in their native tongue.
The students in
the study, who were three years old when the effort began, are now in
fifth through seventh grades. As the study continues, the researchers
hope to encourage early childhood programs such as Head Start to create
a richer language environment by placing greater emphasis on reading to
children and on discussions involving complex vocabulary. For many
programs, which already try to involve the family more closely in the
child's development, it will be a natural extension to build ways to
enrich the child's language environment, both at school and at home.
Says Snow: "You
can wait to teach the child the alphabet, but every day that you don't
enrich the child's vocabulary is a day the child has lost."
Clinton's America Reads Challenge reflects the
Administration's belief that every child needs to be able to read well
and independently. Recent research on early literacy indicates that a
child acquires essential basic literacy skills before learning to read,
and that early exposure to a language-rich environment is critical to
the child's long-term academic development.
TELL THEM, "YES, IT'S
As a poor, Mexican American child, Richard Tapia knew he excelled in
math and science, but how his technical abilities could lead him out of
inner city Los Angeles seemed uncertain. "I just needed someone to tell
me, 'Yes, it's possible.'"
director of Rice University's Department of Computational and Applied
Mathematics, recalls several teachers who went the extra mile and
encouraged him to "take your talent and love of math, and make a career
out of it." While building impressive academic and professional
achievements, including nomination by President Clinton to the National Science Board that governs the
National Science Foundation (NSF), Tapia has never forgotten that
one positive statement can change someone's life forever.
Honored for his
mentoring efforts, Richard Tapia of Rice University is flanked
by Neal Lane, National Science Foundation Director (L) and John Gibbons,
Assistant to the President for Science and Technology.
In addition to
teaching and research, Tapia began and now directs all outreach programs
of the NSF-funded Center for Research on Parallel Computation at Rice.
In less than ten years, these programs have trained and encouraged more
than 750 students and 700 teachers, especially underrepresented
minorities and women, to pursue careers in mathematics and science. He
is as comfortable speaking to a class of second-graders as to a graduate
school seminar. All the while, he is urging his network of teachers,
students, and community leaders to interact with each other to make the
world a better place.
importance of role modeling and mentoring is recognized at the highest
levels. In 1996, Tapia, along with nine other individuals and six
institutions, received a Presidential Award for
Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring. The
awards are bestowed by the
White House Office of Science and Technology Policy through the
National Science and Technology Council. They recognize outstanding
mentoring efforts and programs that enhance the participation of
individuals from groups under-represented in these
fields, namely minorities, women, and persons with disabilities.
is remarkable, but it is not unique. He and his co-recipients share
President Clinton's belief that the nation's future prosperity depends
on producing the finest scientists and engineers for the twenty-first
century, and that we cannot afford to ignore the talents of people who
may be outside the economic and social mainstream.
winner, Martha Shumate Absher, firmly believes that outreach is done one
individual at a time. Absher is director of outreach for the NSF
Engineering Research Center for Emerging Cardiovascular Technologies at
Duke University. She recalls a deaf undergraduate student she met when
she visited Washington, D.C. to interview Gallaudet University
candidates for her summer program. He was a "superb computer scientist,"
she recalls, but he was discouraged and worried about how to support his
wife and the child they were expecting. He needed a job and was
considering dropping out of school. She arranged a paid research
internship for him in industry for one semester and, after the baby was
born, brought the young father to Duke for the summer program. "He did a
wonderful job," and was inspired to apply to the University of Maryland
Computer Science Department, where he is now enrolled. Without her
program's support, "who knows if he could have continued?" Absher muses.
"He might have been lost to the whole educational system."
Absher of Duke University was honored at a White House ceremony
for her outstanding efforts to encourage minorities and persons with
disabilities to pursue scientific and technical careers.
program provides laboratory research experience, and develops mentoring
relationships with students from six universities, including Gallaudet
and five Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Students from
her program often become mentors to other students. She concentrates on
follow-up because students who face challenges, such as disabilities,
are often unable to turn one positive experience into continued career
Tapia believe that government support has literally changed the lives of
students who otherwise would be unable to make the move from high school
to undergraduate school to graduate school. Both express surprise that
their award has made a difference to them but say that the personal
recognition, and the visibility brought to their programs, helps them
toward their goal of developing a pool of highly trained scientists and
engineers that reflects our diverse population. Especially for those
students who must overcome long odds to pursue a technical career,
mentors such as Tapia and Absher can be all-important figures because
they believe it when they say, "Yes, it's possible."
SELECTED RECENT ACCOMPLISHMENTS
IN HUMAN RESOURCES AND EDUCATION
- Goals 2000 - Educate America Act of 1994
- National Plan for Technology in Education
- Technology Literacy Challenge Fund
- Technology Learning Challenge Grant Program
- Advanced Technological Education Program
- Regional Technology in Education Consortia
- Collaborative Research on Learning Technologies
- Systemic Education Reform Initiatives
- America Reads Challenge
- Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers
- Presidential Awards for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring
- School-to-Work transition program
- U.S. Technology Corps
- National Service Corps
- NetDay 96
- Expanded Pell Grants
- Direct Loans
- Skill Grants
TABLE OF CONTENTS | APPENDIX
President and First Lady | Vice President and Mrs. Gore
Record of Progress | The Briefing Room
Gateway to Government | Contacting the White House
White House for Kids | White House History
White House Tours | Help | Text Only