Congresswoman and NSF Director Highlight Grants at Wake Tech

Raleigh, N.C. (November 22, 2022) – Today, Second District Congresswoman Deborah Ross, National Science Foundation (NSF) Director Sethuraman Panchanathan, and Wake Tech President Dr. Scott Ralls celebrated millions in federal funding that institutions in Wake County have received through NSF.

Recent NSF grants for Wake Tech have included $1.4 million for the college's STEM Academic Research & Training (START) program – Wake Tech's largest NSF grant to date. The college has been awarded 21 NSF grants over the past 40 years and currently has six active NSF-funded projects.

In addition to Wake Tech, Ross and Panchanathan visited North Carolina State University, which has received millions in federal funding from NSF, making it the top NSF-funded academic institution in North Carolina.

"Community colleges and universities like Wake Tech and N.C. State are shaping the future of North Carolina, and I was excited to welcome Director Panchanathan to Wake County," Ross said. "North Carolina is a hub of innovation and progress, and the support our state has received through NSF funding is a testament to our leadership in the STEM fields. I look forward to seeing everything that our outstanding institutions in Wake County will continue to accomplish through our strong partnerships with NSF."

"I am very excited and thankful for Rep. Ross' invitation to visit North Carolina, a place where technological innovation has flourished and fundamental research has led to groundbreaking discoveries,” Panchanathan said. "At NSF, we are focused on cultivating a STEM workforce for the future by reaching students in every region of our nation, ensuring that innovation and opportunities exists everywhere for them to succeed in the STEM enterprise. We look forward to continuing to strengthen our partnerships with academia, government and industry to support students in North Carolina for decades to come."

"Not many community colleges offer undergraduate research opportunities for students," Ralls said. "NSF grant funding makes it possible to offer this unique program, and we couldn't be more grateful."

In addition to the START program, other active NSF-funded projects at Wake Tech include:

  • Preparing Students for the Industry 4.0 Workforce
  • Preparing Students for Careers in Cloud Computing
  • Connecting Industry to Math Instruction
  • Advanced Building Technologies
  • Photogrammetry and Technical Animation 

Congresswoman Ross supported robust funding for NSF in the CHIPS and Science Act, which was signed into law by President Biden in August. This historic package authorized $81 billion in funding for NSF over five years, doubling the agency's budget. Included in this legislation were five of Ross' bills and amendments to bolster cybersecurity, clean energy technology, research initiatives and STEM education in the Research Triangle and across the country.

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September 2023

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