Challenge and opportunity  pg. 3

Vanderbilt also recognizes that in order to maintain and grow a vibrant research enterprise, we need a renewable talent pool entering our institution to innovate and solve big questions about health and disease. Yet the national statistics are disturbing: U.S. students continue to lag behind their peers in other countries in science achievement scores, college completion rates are low, and fewer choose academic research as a career.

It becomes our challenge and opportunity as an institution of higher education to help reverse those trends by supporting programs that provide enhanced, accelerated and engaging science curricula to students in high school and even earlier. Several of these programs are described in this issue.

These are but a small fraction of the many novel initiatives that we and our colleagues in biomedical science across the nation and around the world are undertaking to advance human health. We must commit ourselves to making the case, clear and strong, for increasing our nation’s investment in biomedical research. Together we can turn these uniquely challenging times into ones of great opportunity – for our academic medical centers, our local communities, and for the nation and global community we are privileged to serve.

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