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Rep. Rick Larsen visits with Edmonds CC MESA students on May 6


Rep. Rick Larsen meets with Edmonds CC MESA students
Rep. Rick Larsen meets with Edmonds CC MESA students

Congressman Rick Larsen visited with Edmonds Community College MESA (Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement) students on May 6 on the college's campus.

Students shared anecdotally how the MESA and RISE (Relations in Science Education) programs have created motivation and inspiration in their educational journey at Edmonds CC. Others told Larsen that their morale and confidence has increased as a result of being in the programs.

Both MESA and RISE are funded through National Science Foundation grants. Edmonds CC is one of six colleges that offers MESA out of 34 community and technical colleges in the state.

“I’m glad programs like MESA and RISE exist,” said Larsen. “We’re always trying to keep these programs funded on a federal level. It is helpful to me in visiting schools to see how these programs are achieving results with students.”

Edmonds CC’s MESA Center provides academic resources for low-income, educationally disadvantaged students studying science and seeking to transfer to bachelor’s degree programs. The center aims to increase the numbers of women and underrepresented minorities studying science.

RISE is a scholars program for students to apply for funds for direct support in STEM degree completion. It also provides a community of peers, faculty, and tutors; field trips; speakers; workshops, advising and mentoring by STEM faculty; and the use of the STEM Open Study room.

Larsen also toured the college’s STEM Open Study room. Free for use for all STEM students, the study room features group study space with whiteboard tables and wall-mounted screens, faculty office hours and advising in STEM programs, and free snacks.

“I think that in general, we need to be more purposeful in encouraging involvement in STEM education,” said Larsen.“Community colleges are doing a lot of great things and we need to invest in them.”


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