CMU summer school funding restored

The Pennsylvania Governor’s School for the Sciences, a summer enrichment program hosted by the Mellon College of Science for gifted high school students, will resume this summer after a three-year hiatus.

The Pennsylvania Governor’s School for the Sciences (PGSS), which was cancelled in 2009 due to state budget cuts, effectively instigated the closing of other Governor’s Schools across Pennsylvania.

In response, Carnegie Mellon alumni raised funds amounting to $150,000, which were then matched by the state education department. Fundraising was largely successful due to the help of PGSS alumni.

According to the PGSS Alumni website, members believe that it is important to promote the teaching of evidence-based science, mathematics, and computer science at the secondary school level and to encourage students who demonstrate an aptitude for mathematics and science to pursue science-based careers.

Barry Luokkala, professor of physics and director of PGSS, said in a university press release, “The alumni of the program pushed to get the funding restored. So many of the alumni have said that The Governor’s School was lifechanging. They wanted the school back so that other students could have the same experience.”

All of the students who have attended PGSS later attended college, with 90 percent of them pursuing careers in math, science, or technology.

The program will accept 56 students from over 500 applications.

Those accepted will receive full tuition, room, and board for the five-week program, which will run Jun. 30 through Aug. 5. Selected students must demonstrate excellent academic records, evidence of sustained interest and outstanding performance in science and mathematics, and high standardized test scores, according to the PGSS website.

The purpose of the school is to advance an overall general participation in the sciences. During the summer program, chosen students will be able to study biology, chemistry, computer science, math, and physics.
They will also complete a team research project, with the help of a faculty member, by the end of the program.

The application deadline for PGSS is Feb. 15. More information can be found at