U.S. Science Fellow Dr. Sonia Ortega to Work with Malaysia's MIGHT to Promote Science in Education
U.S. Science Fellow Dr. Sonia Ortega arrived in Malaysia on September 2 to begin a two-month working visit with the Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology (MIGHT), a public-private organization under the purview of the Prime Minister’s Department mandated to promote science and technology in Malaysia.
“The Embassy welcomes Dr. Ortega to Malaysia,” said U.S. Ambassador to Malaysia Paul W. Jones. “Dr. Ortega’s collaboration with her Malaysian counterparts will advance and strengthen Malaysia-U.S. scientific cooperation, and is an example of the important work our two countries are doing together under our memorandum of understanding on science and technology.”
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton signed the Memorandum of Understanding on Science and Technology Cooperation during her 2010 visit to Malaysia. In 2011, U.S. Presidential Science Envoy Dr. Rita Colwell added momentum with a weeklong stay in Malaysia hosted by MIGHT to identify specific areas of collaboration between Malaysia and the U.S.
Dr. Ortega’s upcoming visit is a direct result of these high-level visits and underscores U.S. commitment to advancing cooperation between Malaysia and the U.S. on science and technology issues that will create a better future for both countries.
Dr. Ortega specializes in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education programs at the U.S. National Science Foundation. She is especially interested in developing strategies to engage young students in science and technology studies.
While in Malaysia, Dr. Ortega will work on a program established by MIGHT in connection with the Global Science and Innovation Advisory Council and Ministry of Higher Education Cradle to Career initiative.
At the core of Dr. Ortega’s activities is her involvement with MIGHT, stemming from the agency’s longstanding cooperation with the National Science Foundation and other relevant science and technology authorities.
Her working visit with MIGHT will include participation in local programs especially in the areas of science, technology and innovation for example the High Level Roundtable on Women in Top Leadership Positions in Science and Technology organized by ISTIC and NAM Institute for the Empowerment of Women (NIEW), the Conference on Education organized by Sultan Idris Education University (UPSI), and other initiatives.
“This is a fantastic opportunity to strengthen further the existing relationships between scientific and education communities in both countries,” said Mohd Yusoff Sulaiman, President and CEO of MIGHT.
“It reflects well on the seriousness of the commitment of our partners in the U.S. to working with Malaysian peers and we at MIGHT look forward to contributing to the strengthening of national engagements with science and technology communities in the U.S. and around the world,” he added.
The Malaysian Industry-Government Group for High Technology (MIGHT) is an agency in the Prime Minister’s Department responsible for advancing national competency in high technology industries. As a key provider of policy input in high technology areas such as aerospace, advanced materials, rail, maritime, and others, MIGHT has long had an important role in planning for the country’s industry development. MIGHT also works with foreign governments, companies, NGOs and other science and technology related organizations to enhance Malaysian exposure to science, technology and innovation communities of expertise around the world.
About the Embassy Science Fellows Program
The State Department’s Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs, Office of Science and Technology Cooperation oversees the Embassy Science Fellows program. The program supports collaborative projects between the U.S. and host countries with the goal of strengthening cooperation on science and technology activities.