Text: S.153 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)

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Public Law No: 116-115 (02/11/2020)

 
[116th Congress Public Law 115]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]



[[Page 105]]

                       SUPPORTING VETERANS IN STEM
                               CAREERS ACT

[[Page 134 STAT. 106]]

Public Law 116-115
116th Congress

                                 An Act


 
To promote veteran involvement in STEM education, computer science, and 
     scientific research, and for other purposes. <<NOTE: Feb. 11, 
                           2020 -  [S. 153]>> 

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled, <<NOTE: Supporting 
Veterans in STEM Careers Act.>> 
SECTION 1. <<NOTE: 42 USC 1861 note.>> SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Supporting Veterans in STEM Careers 
Act''.
SEC. 2. <<NOTE: 42 USC 1862t note.>>  DEFINITIONS.

    In this Act:
            (1) Director.--The term ``Director'' means the Director of 
        the National Science Foundation.
            (2) Foundation.--The term ``Foundation'' means the National 
        Science Foundation.
            (3) STEM.--The term ``STEM'' has the meaning given the term 
        in section 2 of the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act of 2010 
        (42 U.S.C. 6621 note).
            (4) Veteran.--The term ``veteran'' has the meaning given the 
        term in section 101 of title 38, United States Code.
SEC. 3. SUPPORTING VETERANS IN STEM EDUCATION AND COMPUTER 
                    SCIENCE.

    (a) <<NOTE: 42 USC 1862t.>>  Supporting Veteran Involvement in 
Scientific Research and STEM Education.--The Director shall, through the 
research and education activities of the Foundation, encourage veterans 
to study and pursue careers in STEM and computer science, in 
coordination with other Federal agencies that serve veterans.

    (b) <<NOTE: Deadline. 42 USC 1862t.>> Veteran Outreach Plan.--Not 
later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the 
Director shall submit to the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology 
of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, 
and Transportation of the Senate a plan for how the Foundation can 
enhance its outreach efforts to veterans. Such plan shall--
            (1) report on the Foundation's existing outreach activities;
            (2) identify the best method for the Foundation to leverage 
        existing authorities and programs to facilitate and support 
        veterans in STEM careers and studies, including teaching 
        programs; and
            (3) include options for how the Foundation could track 
        veteran participation in research and education programs of the 
        Foundation, and describe any barriers to collecting such 
        information.

[[Page 134 STAT. 107]]

    (c) <<NOTE: 42 USC 1862t.>>  National Science Board Indicators 
Report.--The National Science Board shall provide in its annual report 
on indicators of the state of science and engineering in the United 
States any available and relevant data on veterans in science and 
engineering careers or education programs.

    (d) Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program Update.--Section 10 of 
the National Science Foundation Authorization Act of 2002 (42 U.S.C. 
1862n-1) is amended--
            (1) in subsection (a)(5)--
                    (A) in subparagraph (A), by striking ``and'' at the 
                end;
                    (B) in subparagraph (B), by striking the period at 
                the end and inserting ``; and''; and
                    (C) by adding at the end the following:
                    ``(C) higher education programs that serve or 
                support veterans.'';
            (2) in subsection (b)(2)(F)--
                    (A) by striking ``and students'' and inserting ``, 
                students''; and
                    (B) by inserting ``, and veterans'' before the 
                period at the end;
            (3) in subsection (c)(2), by inserting ``and veterans'' 
        before the period at the end; and
            (4) in subsection (d)(2), by inserting ``and veterans'' 
        before the period at the end.

    (e) National Science Foundation Teaching Fellowships and Master 
Teaching Fellowships Update.--Section 10A(d) of the National Science 
Foundation Authorization Act of 2002 (42 U.S.C. 1862n-1a(d)) is 
amended--
            (1) in paragraph (3)(F)--
                    (A) by striking ``and individuals'' and inserting 
                ``, individuals''; and
                    (B) by inserting ``, and veterans'' before the 
                period at the end; and
            (2) in paragraph (4)(B), by inserting ``and veterans'' 
        before the period at the end.

    (f) National Science Foundation Computer and Network Security 
Capacity Building Grants Update.--Section 5(a) of the Cyber Security 
Research and Development Act (15 U.S.C. 7404(a)) is amended--
            (1) in paragraph (1), by inserting ``and students who are 
        veterans'' after ``these fields''; and
            (2) in paragraph (3)--
                    (A) in subparagraph (I), by striking ``and'' at the 
                end;
                    (B) by redesignating subparagraph (J) as 
                subparagraph (K); and
                    (C) by inserting after subparagraph (I) the 
                following:
                    ``(J) creating opportunities for veterans to 
                transition to careers in computer and network security; 
                and''.

    (g) Graduate Traineeships in Computer and Network Security Research 
Update.--Section 5(c)(6)(C) of the Cyber Security Research and 
Development Act (15 U.S.C. 7404(c)(6)(C)) is amended by inserting ``or 
veterans'' after ``disciplines''.
    (h) <<NOTE: 42 USC 1862t.>>  Veterans and Military Families STEM 
Education Interagency Working Group.--

[[Page 134 STAT. 108]]

            (1) <<NOTE: Establishment.>>  In general.--The Director of 
        the Office of Science and Technology Policy shall establish, or 
        designate, an interagency working group to improve veteran and 
        military spouse equity and representation in STEM fields.
            (2) Duties <<NOTE: Strategic plan.>>  of interagency working 
        group.--An interagency working group established under paragraph 
        (1) shall develop and facilitate the implementation by 
        participating agencies of a strategic plan, which shall--
                    (A) specify and prioritize short- and long-term 
                objectives;
                    (B) specify the common metrics that will be used by 
                Federal agencies to assess progress toward achieving 
                such objectives;
                    (C) identify barriers veterans face in reentering 
                the workforce, including a lack of formal STEM 
                education, career guidance, and the process of 
                transferring military credits and skills to college 
                credits;
                    (D) identify barriers military spouses face in 
                establishing careers in STEM fields;
                    (E) describe the approaches that each participating 
                agency will take to address administratively the 
                barriers described in subparagraphs (C) and (D); and
                    (F) identify any barriers that require Federal or 
                State legislative or regulatory changes in order to be 
                addressed.
            (3) Report.--The Director of the Office of Science and 
        Technology Policy shall--
                    (A) <<NOTE: Deadline.>>  not later than 1 year after 
                the date of enactment of this Act, submit to Congress 
                the strategic plan required under paragraph (2); and
                    (B) include in the annual report required by section 
                101(d) of the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act of 
                2010 (42 U.S.C. 6621(d)) a description of any progress 
                made in carrying out the activities described in 
                paragraph (2) of this subsection.
            (4) Sunset.--An interagency working group established under 
        paragraph (1) shall terminate on the date that is 3 years after 
        the date that it is established.
SEC. 4. COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES STUDY AND REPORT 
                    ON BARRIERS FACED BY STUDENT VETERANS PURSUING 
                    DEGREES IN SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY, ENGINEERING, 
                    OR MATH.

    (a) <<NOTE: Deadline.>>  Study.--Not later than August 1, 2022, the 
Comptroller General of the United States shall complete a study on 
academic success rates of student veterans pursuing covered degrees and 
barriers faced by such students in pursuing such degrees.

    (b) <<NOTE: Assessments.>>  Elements.--The study required by 
subsection (a) shall include the following:
            (1) Assessment of available information on the percentage or 
        number of student veterans pursuing a covered degree with 
        educational assistance furnished under chapter 33 of title 38, 
        United States Code.
            (2) Assessment of available information on the percentage or 
        number of such students who pursue a covered degree and do not 
        obtain such degree in four or fewer academic years.

[[Page 134 STAT. 109]]

            (3) Identification of the reasons that such students do not 
        obtain such degree in four or fewer academic years and whether 
        such reasons are barriers to obtaining such degrees.
            (4) <<NOTE: Recommenda- tions.>>  Development of 
        recommendations for legislative or administrative action to 
        better align the educational assistance furnished under chapter 
        33 of title 38, United States Code, with the needs of such 
        students and address the reasons identified under paragraph (3).

    (c) Report.--Not later than August 1, 2022, the Comptroller General 
shall submit to Congress a report on the findings of the Comptroller 
General with respect to the study completed under subsection (a), along 
with recommendations for such legislative or administrative action as 
the Comptroller General considers appropriate.
    (d) Definition of Covered Degree.--In this section, the term 
``covered degree'' means a standard, undergraduate college degree in a 
field listed under section 3320(b)(4)(A)(i) of title 38, United States 
Code.

    Approved February 11, 2020.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--S. 153 (H.R. 425):
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

SENATE REPORTS: No. 116-164 (Comm. on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation).
CONGRESSIONAL RECORD:
            Vol. 165 (2019): Dec. 18, considered and passed Senate.
            Vol. 166 (2020): Jan. 27, considered and passed House.
DAILY COMPILATION OF PRESIDENTIAL DOCUMENTS (2020):
            Feb. 11, Presidential remarks.

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