U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., noted the success of Richland's Delta High School during a hearing Wednesday in Washington, D.C.
The hearing of the Senate Commerce Committee addressed the America COMPETES Act, which set new funding goals for innovation and research but also in advocating science, technology, engineering and math -- also known as STEM -- education.
Delta High is a STEM school operated jointly by the Richland, Pasco and Kennewick school districts. Cantwell spoke of how the school is served by the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland.
"These things have incubation or help and support from private sector entities that care a lot about establishing these programs," Cantwell said during the hearing.
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According to government reports and hearing testimony, 1.2 million jobs in STEM fields will be created between 2010-20. The nation isn't creating enough professionals to fill demand.
Staff with Cantwell's office said the hearing is preliminary to the America COMPETES Act being up for reauthorization in 2013.