Klobuchar’s bills authorize the National Aeronautics and Space Administration Administrator to encourage women to study science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) and pursue careers in aerospace through NASA initiatives, as well as build on existing efforts by the National Science Foundation to increase women’s participation in STEM education and research by expanding those efforts to help recruit and support women in STEM fields as they commercialize their research
Klobuchar was the lead Senate author on one bill, and the lead Senate Democrat on the other
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) announced that her bipartisan bills to encourage, recruit and support women in STEM fields were signed into law today by the President. Klobuchar’s bills authorize the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Administrator to encourage women to study STEM and pursue careers in aerospace through NASA initiatives, as well as build on existing efforts by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to increase women’s participation in STEM education and research by expanding those efforts to help recruit and support women in STEM fields as they commercialize their research.
“Women are the teachers, engineers, scientists, and inventors who will carry us into a brighter future,” said Klobuchar. “By encouraging women and tapping their talents and abilities, employers can better meet their hiring needs, and women can enjoy the benefits of well-paying jobs in STEM fields. These new laws will help women contribute more to their families’ financial wellbeing – and the benefits will help our whole economy.”
The Inspiring the Next Space Pioneers, Innovators, Researchers, and Explorers (INSPIRE) Women Act further advances America’s space science exploration through support of initiatives such as NASA GIRLS and NASA BOYS; Aspire-Inspire; and the Summer Institute in Science, Technology, Engineering and Research. The legislation also requires a report to Congress on how NASA plans to achieve the goals laid out in the bill. Representative Barbara Comstock (R-VA) is the author of the legislation in the House.
The Promoting Women in Entrepreneurship Act amends the Science and Engineering Equal Opportunities Act to authorize the NSF to encourage its entrepreneurial programs to recruit and support women to extend their focus beyond the laboratory into the commercial world. Representative Elizabeth Esty (D-CT) is the author of the legislation in the House. The Senate bill was cosponsored by Senator Dean Heller (R-NV).
Klobuchar has been in a leader in the effort to develop a strong science and engineering workforce ready for the jobs of tomorrow. Last month, 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 reauthorization of the America Creating Opportunities to Meaningfully Promote Excellence in Technology, Education, and Science (COMPETES) Act. She was 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 also one of the founding co-chairs of the Diversifying Technology Caucus and co-chair of the Women’s High Tech Coalition.