Paula Sorrell, director of the U-M Economic Growth Institute, speaks to a Capitol Hill briefing in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday about the benefits of a U.S. Department of Defense-funded program coordinated by the institute that assists small and medium-sized defense supply manufacturers in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana. The Defense Manufacturing Assistance Program has had an outstanding record of keeping many of these companies alive and thriving.
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President Mark Schlissel told a Washington, D.C., audience Wednesday that the University of Michigan continues its longtime commitment to be a leading international community of scholars.
Speaking at the 66th annual U-M Congressional Breakfast, Schlissel said the university’s ability to attract the best students and faculty from around the globe “enhances our teaching, learning, research and societal impact” and is a major reason for U-M’s standing as an outstanding research university.
Schlissel said U-M is working with other universities to make sure foreign students and faculty can continue to enrich the excellence of U-M.
“This is also an issue of competitiveness for our state,” he added. “Preparation for that competition requires our students to have the skills and experiences best acquired through collaboration with diverse groups of people.”
Schlissel also urged lawmakers to help preserve U-M’s ability to use a “conservative approach” to successfully manage its endowments and protect donor choices. Congress is considering legislation that could potentially have an impact on such endowments.
In her remarks as keynote speaker, U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Dearborn, who represents the Ann Arbor and Dearborn campuses, saluted the university as it celebrates its bicentennial, but also called upon U-M and its alumni to stand up for resolving the major issues facing the nation.
“For 200 years, the University of Michigan has brought diverse members of our community together to have difficult discussions, to debate and to find solutions to the problems we face as a society — to lift each other up and strengthen lives and communities,” said Dingell. “All U-M alumni who are here in D.C. not only make a difference, but have a responsibility to make a difference.”
Other members of Congress in attendance included Sen. Gary Peters, D-Michigan, along with U.S. Reps. Dan Kildee, D-Flint; John Moolenaar, R-Midland; Dave Trott, R-Birmingham; and Ted Deutch, D-Florida.
The Congressional Breakfast is sponsored by the U-M Club of Greater Washington, with all proceeds going toward scholarships for D.C.-area students who attend Michigan. More than 300 people attended this year’s event, which also marked the official D.C. observance of U-M’s bicentennial.
Author: Michael A. Waring
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