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It Starts with Science

Secretary Chu discusses the importance of investing in cleaner, alternative sources of energy and finding ways to use fossil fuels more efficiently.

Ed. Note: To keep up with Secretary Chu day to day, visit his Facebook page.

I recently traveled to the Middle East on behalf of the Department of Energy. During my time in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar, I had the opportunity to engage with leaders of science and industry, visit universities, finalize agreements with other Energy ministers, and see several innovative energy projects firsthand. I was struck by the many opportunities for collaboration among our countries. There is a shared belief that we all must invest in cleaner, alternative sources of energy, while at the same time finding ways to use fossil fuels more efficiently and cleanly. The U.S. wants to be a partner in these efforts, so that, together, we can ensure our prosperity and protect the planet for future generations. 

That potential for collaboration is especially apparent in education, which is a key priority for all countries. For example, six American universities already have campuses in "Education City" in Qatar, focusing on a broad range of subjects, such as medicine and business, as well as science and engineering.

During my time in Education City, I had the chance to sit down with an exceptional student named Thouria Mahmoud, who is currently studying journalism at Northwestern University's campus. She represents a generation that is excited by the possibilities that scientific innovation holds for their future - and the role they can play in shaping that future.

That excitement was the catalyst for much of our conversation. As you can see in the clip below, I shared some experiences from my own academic journey and why I feel science is at the heart of a liberal arts education. I hope you take the chance to view this video and share some insights on your own academic journey and how education can continue to advance our common interests.

Steven Chu is the Secretary of Energy