COLLEGE STATION Governor Rick Perry joined Cognizant president Gordon Coburn at the National Center for Therapeutics Manufacturing Monday. The two announced a 3-year, $150,000 grant for STEM educational programs.
Several university and community leaders were in attendance at the short presentation ceremony. Governor Perry spoke about the need to increase STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) graduates. Coburn told the crowd about their interest in moving their principal U.S. operating company to College Station and the plans to increase their workforce in Texas by 750 jobs.
"Just locally in the U.S., I need to hire over 10,000 STEM professionals in the next three years. There are not enough of them today. We need more," said Gordon Coburn, president of Cognizant.
The NCTM will use the funding from the grant to support its BioFORCE program, which provides developmental activities to prepare and encourage high school students to become part of the biotechnology and bio-manufacturing workforce.
"We bring in high school students and tee them in up two ways. We want to tell them this is a future that you can really succeed at," said Texas A&M University President R. Bowen Loftin. He went on to say that summer camps at Texas A&M helps students gain the tools necessary to succeed at a STEM degree when they go to college.
Cognizant is a global leader in business and technology services and one of the fastest growing Fortune 500 companies, employing more than 29,000 people nationwide and 2,000 in Texas. Cognizant has donated more than $336,000 towards various outreach programs across the state.