Pitt, CMU Prepping For President’s Visit During White House Frontiers Conference

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — President Obama is set to visit Pittsburgh on Thursday to interact with some of the most creative minds in the country when it comes to science and innovation.

Preparations were well underway Wednesday afternoon at the campus of Carnegie Mellon University in anticipation of the White House Frontiers Conference.

The highlight of the day will be an address by President Obama and people are coming from all over the country. But the big question now is – why Pittsburgh?

President Obama is big on innovation, and he likes what’s going on here in Pittsburgh from advancements in the field of robotics, to the country’s first commercial driverless car.

Pittsburgh is breaking new grounds.

“Pittsburgh is a city that has come alive with science, technology, innovation and education,” says Dr. John Holdren, of the White House Office of Science and Technology.

“The president’s really coming to Pittsburgh to make this sort of a real thing. We have five different frontiers that he’s pushing on,” White House Chief Technology Officer Megan Smith said.

Those frontiers are:

  • Personal – health care innovations
  • Local – building smart, inclusive communities
  • National – robotics and data driven research
  • Global – clean energy advances
  • Interplanetary – travel to Mars

“What are we doing about jobs? What are we doing about short course, ways that we can pull many more people in these higher paying tech jobs,” says Smith.

The Frontiers conference will attract people from across the country – from high school and college students to professionals and local leaders.

Sessions will be held at both the University of Pittsburgh and CMU campuses.

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It could mean funding coming into our area as well. The cutting-edge innovations include medical research and procedures, even projects that could send someone to another planet.

“In every one of the themes there will be new announcements, new initiatives, new federal investments that will be announced,” Dr. Holdren said.

About 700 people are expected to attend the overall conference.

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