Rep. Haler invites legislative colleagues to tour local facilities showcasing successful higher education partnerships, programs

On Wednesday, Sept. 22, members of the Washington State House Higher Education Committee are being invited to the Washington State University Tri-Cities campus in Richland to witness firsthand the many local higher education partnerships and programs that continue to make the Tri-Cities region a state and national leader in educating the next generation.

Rep. Larry Haler, R-Richland, and the ranking Republican on the committee, organized the event to coincide with two committee meetings taking place in Spokane and Ellensburg, Sept. 20 and 21, respectively.

“We are so blessed to have the higher education facilities, partnerships and people that we do here in the Tri-Cities region,” Haler said.  “With the budget situation in this state continuing to be extremely perilous, I feel it’s vitally important for my legislative colleagues to see and experience some of our local higher education partnerships.  The successes we’ve seen in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics – or STEM – programs for teachers and students need to be understood by my colleagues as we gear up for what promises to be a difficult 2012 session.”

The agenda for the higher education meeting includes a campus overview by WSU Tri-Cities Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Dick Pratt, as well as presentations on STEM successes in Tri-Cities, including MESA (Mathematics, Engineering, Science Achievement) state-funded outreach programs), Delta High and STEM at the Columbia Basin College.

Committee members will also tour the Bioproducts, Sciences, and Engineering Laboratory and discuss veteran student issues.  The day concludes with a presentation on Wine Sciences and a discussion on the collaboration to construct the Wine Science Center at WSU Tri-Cities and its impact on the state’s economic development.

“Perhaps more than any other economic region, the Tri-Cities has a rich history of higher education public and private partnerships that continues to pave the way for the next generation of workers,” Haler said.  “Our goal is to highlight these successes and show decision makers in the Legislature how their decisions have impacted our higher education efforts locally and on a state-wide level.”



For more information, contact Brendon Wold, Senior Information Officer: (360) 786-7698


Washington State House Republican Communications