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March 24, 2009

Date: March 24, 2009
Media Contacts: Elizabeth Homan, 240-567-7970; Marcus Rosano, 240-567-7952

Montgomery College to Honor Philanthropist Paul Peck for $1 Million Gift to Support Biotechnology Program
College and County Leaders, Biotech Executives to Attend Ceremony


Montgomery College–Germantown
Globe Hall
High Technology and Science Center
20200 Observation Drive
Germantown, Maryland

Montgomery College will honor philanthropist Paul Peck for his recent $1 million contribution toward the expansion of the College’s biotechnology program on Wednesday, March 25, 2009, at 3 p.m. Joining Montgomery College President Brian K. Johnson will be Montgomery County Council President Phil Andrews; Dr. Tom Watkins, CEO of Human Genome Sciences; Dr. James Kramer, vice president at BioReliance Corporation; and Doug Firstenberg, chair of the Montgomery College Foundation.

Funds from Peck’s gift will go toward the creation of the Paul Peck Center for Applied Science and Technology at the College’s Germantown Campus. Among the Center’s primary initiatives will be the expansion of the College’s current biotechnology program and the addition of a two-semester biotechnology certificate program. This initiative will position students to fill entry-level biotechnology manufacturing jobs and to work toward an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree. The gift will also support scholarships for students within the biotechnology program and the purchase of biotechnology equipment.

Peck’s vision calls for the Center for Applied Science and Technology to take a leadership role in increasing scientific and technical literacy and in providing industry with a talent pool of job candidates possessing detailed technical knowledge and practical experience. As a first step, Montgomery College, the biotechnology industry, and Montgomery County Public Schools will begin working together to build  a national workforce development model for filling entry level science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) jobs.

Peck has a long history of supporting higher education. Including his recent gift, Paul Peck has given $3.75 million to Montgomery College over the past 10 years. Past donations led to the creation of the Paul Peck Humanities Institute at the College’s Rockville Campus and the Paul Peck Institute for American Culture and Civic Engagement at the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus.

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