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State Leaders Kick Off Bonding Tour at Metro State


Contact: Sandy Connolly, Director of Communications
Office of Higher Education
(651) 259-3902

St. Paul, MN--Governor Mark Dayton's higher education bonding recommendations will be the focus of a statewide tour that kicks off today.

Larry Pogemiller, Commissioner of the Office of Higher Education (OHE), and Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben from the Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), will be at Metropolitan State University this afternoon to highlight one of the Governor's recommendations, a new Science Education Center.

Nearly $36 million is proposed for the construction of the new center, designed to increase graduates in STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math) and support rapidly growing health care fields.

"It is vitally important that students graduating from our state colleges and universities be trained in the most up-to-date technology possible, with hands-on experience that prepares them to be successful in a rapidly changing job market," said Pogemiller. "The investments recommended by the Governor were carefully chosen to ensure that Minnesota students have access to world-class labs, classrooms and equipment."

"As our labor force continues to change and adapt to the needs of the marketplace, we must make critical investments like the proposed funding for Metro State to support rapidly growing careers in health sciences and STEM fields," said DEED Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben. "Our educated workforce is our key competitive advantage when it comes to attracting and retaining growing companies and well-paying jobs."

Pogemiller and Clark Sieben will be welcomed by President Sue Hammersmith, as well as several members of the faculty and staff involved with the bonding project. A short press availability is scheduled when they arrive, followed by a tour of the site and a short presentation.

Governor Dayton's Capital Investment bill includes $233 million for higher education projects at the University of Minnesota and MnSCU campuses.

Pogemiller and Clark Sieben have visits planned at Lake Superior College in Duluth, Minnesota State Community and Technical College in Moorhead, Winona State University and a two-day tour visit at colleges on the Iron Range, among others.

For more information, contact Sandy Connolly at the Minnesota Office of Higher Education, 651-2590-3902, cell phone 651-341-6617 or by email at, or Madeline Koch at DEED, 651-259-7236, cell phone 651-398-9459 or by email at

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