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The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine
Board on Higher Education and Workforce
Board on Higher Education and Workforce
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The Board on Higher Education and Workforce (BHEW) provides government, academic and industry leaders with analyses and recommendations designed to inform action and strong public policy on issues in higher education and the workforce. Learn more about BHEW...
"Our science and engineering enterprise is only as 
strong as the people who work in it….”
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For PolicymakersFor Institutions of Higher EducationFor Businesses
BHEW is conducting analyses and crafting state and federal policy recommendations aimed at increasing the quality of higher education across the U.S., with a particular focus on helping prepare the next generation of scientists, engineers and technologically-savvy workers who can contribute to our 21st century economy and also enhance our societal well-being.College is becoming less affordable and less accessible for larger segments of our population—a trend that must be reversed if we are to meet the nation’s social, economic and cultural challenges. BHEW is examining strategies for:
  • increasing state and federal investments in higher education
  • raising productivity and efficiency on our campuses
  • closing the equity gap, and increasing the quality of STEM education and training in 2-year, 4-year and research institutions.
The careers of the 21st century require highly skilled workers with strong technical knowledge and skills as well as the ability to solve problems, think creatively, work collaboratively and function as lifelong learners.

BHEW is outlining strategies for better aligning higher education programs and curricula—at all levels, from 2-year colleges to doctoral programs—with regional and national workforce needs in order to prepare students for career success.
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Regional STEM Workforce Report CoverPromising Practices for Strengthening the Regional STEM Workforce Development Ecosystem, February 2015
On February 12, 2015, under the auspices of a Board on Higher Education and Workforce (BHEW) study committee, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine released a new report, Promising Practices for Strengthening the Regional STEM Workforce Development Ecosystem.

This report summarizes an 18-month study on improving higher education’s responsiveness to regional STEM workforce needs. It was conducted by a project committee under the auspices of BHEW, and was sponsored by The Helmsley Charitable Trust. The report’s primary audiences are business and university leaders, key intermediary organizations such as chambers of commerce and regional economic development groups, and state and local government policy makers. The information, findings, and recommendations focus on promising practices that can enable higher education and business to collaborate in sustainable ways that benefit students, universities, companies, regional economies, and national competitiveness. Learn more about the study.

Research RegulationsCommittee on Federal Research Regulations and Reporting Requirements: A New Framework for Research Universities in the 21st Century, April 2015

The second meeting of the Committee on Federal Research Regulations and Reporting Requirements: A New Framework for Research Universities in the 21st Century was held on April 16-17, 2015 at the Academies' Keck Center in Washington, DC. The committee is conducting a study of federal regulations and reporting requirements with specific attention to those directed at research universities. In conducting its analyses the committee will be aware of (a) the context and intended benefits and circumstances under which a particular regulation was issued and may have evolved, and (b) whether those contexts or circumstances still remain of public concern. The committee will develop a new framework for federal regulation of research universities in the 21st century that addresses the needs of Congress, federal agencies, and the broader public while advancing to the maximum extent feasible the missions of research universities. 

Gulf Final report Cover
Opportunities for the Gulf Research Program: Middle-Skilled Workforce Needs, Summary of a Workshop, November 2014
The Academies Board on Higher Education and Workforce was asked to assist the recently established Gulf Research Program in its planning around education and training issues. A summary of the June 2014 workshop—Opportunities for the Gulf Research Program: Middle-Skilled Workforce Needs—is now available. View the Workshop Summary to learn what key thought leaders from the region’s education and employer communities identified as key needs that might be addressed by the Gulf Research Program.

Chicago Tribune: How Purdue is Reinventing the American University, August 2014
During a time of increasing tuition costs at colleges and universities, Mitch Daniels, President of Purdue University, has frozen base tuition through the 2015-16 academic year. While many college presidents have endless excuses on the need to increase tuition each year, Daniels has found big and small ways to save. Daniels speaks out, saying "when you impose a budget limit, people suddenly begin to do common sense things they should have done before. When money is easy, when you can dial up the tuition or fees, people tend to postpone even the most basic efficiencies."  Read the full article

Helmsley PicNew Study: Improving Higher Education’s Responsiveness to STEM Workforce Needs: Identifying Analytical Tools and Regional Best Practices
BHEW has launched a new study funded by the Helmsley Charitable Trust to explore the effectiveness of higher education institutions in educating STEM-trained workers in response to regional workforce needs. The study will consist of six regional meetings that will explore issues around each region’s STEM economy and how local universities and employers develop sustainable and effective partnerships for workforce development.

FreemanFreeman Hrabowski on Student Success with STEM in Chronicle of Higher Education Video
Freeman Hrabowski, president of the University of Maryland – Baltimore County and chair of the committee that wrote the 2011 Academies report Expanding Underrepresented Minority Participation: America's Science and Technology Talent at the Crossroads, discusses how to give students the support they need to persist in their studies in STEM fields and in all disciplines.  Watch the video 

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