Larsen Pushes For STEM Bill Hearing, More Access To STEM Education

May 12, 2015 Issues: Education, Jobs Labor and the Economy

Students across Northwest Washington benefit from STEM education

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, Rep. Rick Larsen, WA-02, continued his commitment to increasing access to STEM education by calling for a hearing on his Youth Access to American Jobs Act of 2015. Larsen introduced the bill to help students succeed in manufacturing jobs, an important sector for the economy in Northwest Washington. Larsen also announced his support for two other bills designed to improve STEM education.

Larsen urged swift action on the Youth Access to American Jobs Act of 2015 in a letter to House Education and Workforce Committee Chairman John Kline. The bill facilitates partnerships between schools and apprenticeship programs to make sure students are gaining skills directly related to manufacturing workforce needs in their area. The bill received endorsement from the Washington Association for Career and Technical Education.

We need to be providing our students with every opportunity to learn the skills they need to succeed in a globally competitive workforce. Pairing schools with apprenticeships builds a clear, affordable bridge between students and good-paying manufacturing jobs. That is why I am encouraging my colleagues on the Education and Workforce Committee to act swiftly on my bill,” Larsen said.

Larsen also announced his support for two other bills that improve access to STEM education.

  • The Stepping up to STEM Education Act seeks to engage all students, particularly minority students, with STEM through public-private partnerships and networks that expand access to STEM engagement (introduced by Rep. Mike Honda, CA-17).
  • The STEM Opportunities Act of 2015 aims to improve data collection, analysis, and best practices to increase opportunities for women and minorities in STEM-related fields. (introduced by Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson, TX-30).

Students across Northwest Washington are benefitting from STEM education. At Burlington-Edison High School, I recently met with students who successfully built a robot that can move and stack items. Middle school students in Arlington shared with me what they are learning about aerodynamics and population growth estimations. And I have heard from high school students from South Whidbey Island who recently competed regionally and internationally on a project involving submarines.

“Innovations and skills like these will help students succeed in the workforce and keep our region’s economy competitive and strong. I will continue to push for expanded access to STEM opportunities for students in the Pacific Northwest and across the country,” Larsen said.