Senators Daines, Gardner, Rounds, Fischer, Blumenthal, Cortez Masto, Peters, and Rosen have joined as cosponsors
The Supporting Veterans in STEM Careers Act would assist veterans re-entering the workforce by directing the National Science Foundation to encourage veterans to study and pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM)
WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) announced that their legislation to support veterans re-entering the workforce has passed the Senate Commerce Committee and will now head to the full Senate. The Supporting Veterans in STEM Careers Act would assist veterans re-entering the workforce by directing the National Science Foundation to encourage veterans to study and pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). The bill would also require the Office of Science and Technology Policy to establish an interagency working group to develop a strategic plan to address the barriers that veterans face when re-entering the workforce and in pursuing STEM careers.
"Veterans are the teachers, engineers, scientists, and inventors who will lead us to a brighter future,” said Klobuchar. “By encouraging veterans and tapping into their talents, employers can better meet their hiring needs, and veterans can enjoy the benefits of well-paying jobs in science, technology, engineering, and math. I am pleased that our bill has passed the Commerce Committee so we can help support veterans in their transition to civilian life– benefiting veterans, their families, communities, and our whole economy."
“I thank my colleagues on the Senate Commerce Committee for marking up and passing this important, bipartisan bill to ensure our nation’s veterans have the skills and opportunities to succeed in STEM careers,” said Rubio. “The future of work in the 21st century will be dominated by STEM roles, and the United States should prioritize policies that utilize our well-qualified veterans to fill this future workforce. We owe it to our national heroes to ensure this bipartisan bill gets across the finish line.”
Klobuchar has been a leader in the effort to develop a strong science and engineering workforce ready for the jobs of tomorrow. Last Congress, two of Klobuchar’s bipartisan bills, the Inspiring the Next Space Pioneers, Innovators, Researchers, and Explorers (INSPIRE) Women Act and the Promoting Women in Entrepreneurship Act, were signed into law by the President. These bills encourage women to study science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and pursue careers in aerospace through NASA initiatives, and build on existing efforts by the National Science Foundation to increase women’s participation in STEM education and research.
Additionally, Klobuchar’s provisions to require the Director of the NSF to consider recommendations from organizations representing underrepresented groups for the STEM Education Advisory Panel, and allow for research to better understand factors relevant to the retention of STEM teachers from underrepresented groups, including women and minorities, were signed into law by the president in the 2017 reauthorization of the America Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education, and Science (COMPETES) Act. She was also a strong supporter of the America COMPETES Act of 2007 and the reauthorization of the law in 2010. Klobuchar also introduced the Innovate America Act to promote innovation and increase America’s competitiveness in the global economy. Klobuchar is one of the founding co-chairs of the Diversifying Technology Caucus.