N.J. millions to fuel tech work force

The New Jersey Commission on Higher Education last month awarded $14.3 million

in grants to help state colleges and universities develop nationally recognized

technology programs and help fill the high-tech work force.

The High-Tech Workforce Excellence Grants were awarded to seven institutions

that where at the "cusp of greatness" in terms of technology programs, said

Jim Sulton, executive director of the commission.

Sulton said he hopes the grants will help push the schools toward greater

excellence while addressing the shortage of qualified technology workers.

"It's not just concentrating on students; it's helping the institutions,"

he said. "They need to address the students' needs for lifelong learning."

The grants were given in four academic areas:

* Computer science and information technology.

* Physical, life and health sciences.

* Engineering and engineering technology.

* Science and mathematics teacher education.

All the grants, regardless of subject area, are geared toward high-tech

work force needs and will help increase the school's reputation, Sulton

said.

Nine grants were awarded to the following seven institutions: Bergen Community

College, The College of New Jersey, New Jersey Institute of Technology,

Rutgers University (two grants), Salem Community College, Stevens Institute

of Technology (two grants), and the University of Medicine and Dentistry

of New Jersey.

The nine programs were chosen from 45 proposals.

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