Senate Action on Competitiveness Legislation

The Senate is currently working on a smaller version of the USICA/America COMPETES bills for potential consideration and passage next week. Now called the CHIPS Act of 2022, the bill provides significant investments that positively impact graduate education. The bill authorizes $81 billion over five years for the National Science Foundation, which is $36 billion over baseline level funding for the agency. Specifically, this bill authorizes $13 billion total for STEM education, including scholarships, fellowships, and traineeships to create workers in critical fields. The authorization bill also increases funding for NSF research activities for universities across the country, including investment in minority serving institutions and emerging research institutions, and by placing the Established Programs to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) states on a path to receive 20 percent of funding in key accounts by fiscal year 2029.

The bill also provides significant investments to the Department of Energy Office of Science as well, including authorizing $87 million through fiscal year 2027 for the Computational Science Graduate Fellowship.