Crusading Congressman Speaks Here Saturday

May 8, 2002
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ALLENDALE — Congressman Vernon J. Ehlers, R-Grand Rapids, brings his continuing campaign for more and improved science and math education to town Saturday.

Ehlers will speak and answer questions and join in physics and chemistry demonstrations from 10:30 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Jan. 27, at the Loutit Lecture Hall at Grand Valley State University’s Allendale Campus.

The four-term congressman returns to the district after already introducing five new bills concerning science and education. Chief among them is House Bill 100, which would establish and expand programs relating to science, mathematics, engineering and technology education.

A companion bill would amend the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 to the same ends and a third would amend the Internal Revenue Code to encourage private giving as a way of buttressing such training.

Ehlers is the only research physicist and physics professor ever to serve in Congress. Like many colleagues in science, he has been trying to raise the level of official concern in the nation’s capital about glaring shortcomings of science and math training in elementary and secondary schools.

He is not alone, too, in his concern about the apparently unscientific use to which some federal agencies put incomplete scientific data. To that end, he has introduced yet another bill to create the position of deputy administrator for science and technology in the Environmental Protection Agency.

In connection with his discussion Saturday, Ehlers will by joined by two GVSU professors, Dave Tanis and Ross Reynolds, in performing physics and chemistry demonstrations.

Ehlers serves on the House Science Committee and the committees on Education and the Workforce, Transportation and Infrastructure, and House Administration.

Congressman Peter Hoekstra, from the neighboring district to the west, also serves on the House Committee on Education.           

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