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Capitol Hill Day: Diversity in STEM Workforce Maintains U.S. Competitiveness

Through Capitol Hill Day, SWE educates members about how a diverse & inclusive STEM workforce helps maintain U.S. competitiveness through innovation.
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Society of Women Engineers, Capitol Hill Day 2016Through this Capitol Hill Day, we are educating Members and staff about how a commitment to attaining a diverse and inclusive U.S. STEM workforce would help maintain U.S. competitiveness through innovation. Many Members of Congress and their staff are not aware that women and other under-represented groups currently represent only a small portion of the STEM workforce. Leveraging the U.S.’s diverse population is our country’s unique advantage in a global competition. A truly diverse workforce will fuel increased innovation when it takes advantage of the variety of approaches and perspectives offered by diversity.


  • Invest adequately in basic and applied research across the federal research agencies. Specifically, SWE supports the research community’s request that the National Science Foundation be funded at $8 billion for FY 2017, which would be a 7.2% increase over the FY 2016 level of $7.4 billion.
  • Support full funding-$1.65 billion-for the Student Support and Academic Enrichment formula grant program found in Title IV, Part A, of the Every Student Succeeds Act in the FY 2017 Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Appropriations bill. This new program supports many programs and activities, including STEM programs that are crucial to exposing young women to disciplines that will offer them boundless opportunity.
  • Reauthorize the America COMPETES Act in a comprehensive, thoughtful manner that recognizes the importance of federally-supported basic and applied research, respects the peer-review process at these agencies, invests in nurturing interests and success in.
  • STEM disciplines among girls and populations traditionally underrepresented in the STEM fields and fuels the innovative economy of the United States.
  • Support HR 467, the STEM Opportunities Act, and its goals, including giving women and caregivers the support they need as federal researchers, collecting important data on federal merit-reviewed research, requiring institutions of higher education to track and report on the demographics of their STEM faculty and encouraging innovative approaches to attracting and retaining diverse talent in the research and academic communities.
  • Ensure that Title IX is appropriately applied across federal agencies and that non-compliance is addressed in a meaningful and expeditious manner.
  • Embrace policies that help female engineers and STEM professionals to balance life and work, such as equal pay, sufficient maternity and paid family leave and adequate childcare resources.


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