AMES, Iowa -- In his State of the Union Address Jan. 31, President George W. Bush called for greater investment in alternative energy research, and proposed spending billions over the next decade to make America more economically competitive.
The 10-year, $140 billion+ plan would include an initiative to train and hire 70,000 new math and science teachers to teach college-level advanced-placement courses in U.S. high schools.
Iowa State University President Gregory Geoffroy says the Bush proposal addresses an issue that's been of growing concern to research universities like Iowa State for a number of years -- the need for greater federal commitment to basic research, particularly in the physical sciences.
Geoffroy's comments on the President's State of the Union Address
"I applaud the President's proposal to double federal support for basic research programs over the next 10 years, which will help our nation maintain its competitiveness in science and innovation. For many years the federal government has partnered with Iowa State in providing financing for basic research projects that are vital in the development of new technologies and processes. Last year, researchers at Iowa State received $180 million in external research dollars to carry out a wide variety of research projects that are important not just for the state of Iowa, but for the world.
"I am also encouraged to see the President's emphasis on a related issue that affects our national competitiveness: the need to involve more students and teachers in science and mathematics. If we are to maintain our historic leadership position in technology development and innovation, we need to make a much stronger commitment to excellence in mathematics and the sciences.
"I strongly endorse the President's proposals and hope that the Congress will give its strong support. I and other higher education leaders will work hard to help make that happen."