WASHINGTON – The Science Coalition (TSC) today celebrated the launch of the Congressional Women in STEM Caucus, co-chaired by U.S. Representatives Chrissy Houlahan, D-Pa., Debbie Lesko, R-Ariz., Haley Stevens, D-Mich., and Jackie Walorski, R-Ind. The caucus is designed to help support and increase the number of women in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), which builds a foundation for a diverse talent pipeline and advances innovative, groundbreaking research.
TSC was represented by Dr. Melanie Kornides, Assistant Professor at the School of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania. The event also featured remarks by Dr. Kelly Mack, Founder and President of the Society of STEM Women of Color.
“I was one of 10 women in my engineering major,” said Rep. Houlahan. “Thirty years later, the numbers haven’t really changed. That’s why we launched the Women in STEM Caucus. For too long, the STEM community has felt inaccessible to women and underrepresented minorities. I’m proud to stand alongside my colleagues from both sides of the aisle to give STEM a much needed makeover. Our mission is clear: Show women, girls, and underrepresented minorities that STEM is for everyone.”
“Arizona is home to the largest effort in the country by a university to support the entry and success of women in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics,” said Rep. Lesko. “As a representative of a state that is a leader in the cause to promote women in STEM, I am proud today to celebrate the establishment of the Congressional Women in STEM Caucus, and I am honored to serve as one of its co-chairs. It is important to encourage the success of women and girls in STEM fields and that is what I hope to do through my participation in this caucus.”
“As a Member of the House Science Committee, and as someone who previously worked in a manufacturing research lab, I have seen and learned about the discrimination and institutional barriers for women in STEM fields,” said Rep. Stevens. “Women and girls everywhere need to know that they can succeed in the STEM fields, and that our country and our economy won’t succeed without them. That’s why I am so proud to serve as a co-chair of the new Congressional Women in STEM Caucus. I look forward to working with the other Co-Chairs to grow this bipartisan caucus into a powerful force for change, and to ensure that women are given equal opportunities to conduct research, innovate, and discover the next great technological breakthrough.”
“STEM education is a driving force behind our nation’s 21st century economy, strengthening our workforce through hands-on learning, technical training, and real-world application of the skills required in cutting-edge jobs,” said Rep. Walorski. “That’s especially true in northern Indiana, a manufacturing hub that depends on innovation and skill to build made-in-America products. By expanding access and encouraging girls of all ages to explore STEM fields, we can create more jobs and opportunity in our communities and open doors for them to achieve their full potential. I’m excited to help launch the bipartisan Women in STEM Caucus and work with my colleagues to change the landscape of American innovation so all ships can rise.”
“Today is a cause for celebration: These leaders are establishing the first-ever congressional caucus to support the next generation of women researchers,” said Lauren Brookmeyer, President of the Science Coalition and Director of Government Relations at Stony Brook University. “These four lawmakers should be commended for their leadership and tireless advocacy on behalf of women researchers, America’s scientific enterprise, and the unique partnership between our universities and federal research agencies. Strengthening diversity in these research fields is essential to expanding our economy, spurring innovation, and maintaining our nation’s global competitiveness.”
Learn more about how TSC and its member universities across the country support women in STEM by visiting our website.
About The Science Coalition
Established in 1994, The Science Coalition is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization of more than 50 of the nation’s leading public and private research universities. It is dedicated to sustaining the federal government’s investment in basic scientific research as a means to stimulate the economy, spur innovation, and drive America’s global competitiveness.