Titus Introduces Training Highly Skilled Americans Act

Nov 20, 2013
Floor Statements

November 20, 2013  

Washington, D.C. - Congresswoman Dina Titus of Nevada’s First District today spoke on the House floor to announce the introduction of the Training Highly Skilled Americans Act. This legislation would increase investment in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) programs at American colleges and universities that serve minority students.  
“Investing in STEM education gives our students the skills they need to compete for the jobs of tomorrow. This is especially critical for minority students and young women who are significantly underrepresented in these fields,” said Titus. “By investing in STEM, we are not only strengthening our education system, we are building a workforce that is important to our country's innovation and competitiveness.”
The Training Highly Skilled Americans Act would increase federal investment in STEM programs at minority-serving colleges and universities.  It would create scholarships for low-income, minority students, provide loan forgiveness to certain low-income students who obtain a STEM degree, and provide “minority-serving institutions” with funds to develop STEM programs for minorities and women.  It would also create a National Science Foundation grant program to give at-risk K-12 students the tools they need to improve STEM education from the very beginning.  
Colleges and universities across the country are working to attract students to the STEM fields. Earlier this year, the College of Southern Nevada hosted approximately 3,000 K-12 Nevada students at their annual Science & Technology Expo to get local students from all backgrounds excited about careers in the STEM fields before they enter college. In January, the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV) hosted a STEM summit to feature student research and work in the STEM fields. The Training Highly Skilled Americans Act would expand and improve such STEM outreach and training efforts in communities across the country.  
"Congresswoman Titus continues to maintain a vision for all communities as her purposed STEM education legislation will encourage a pipeline of opportunities that will support and enrich our economic and human capital for current and next generation communities of minority students and young women," said Stavan Corbett, member of the Nevada State Board of Education.
The Training Highly Skilled Americans Act would fund these programs by increasing the H-1B visa fee which companies pay to bring high skilled foreign workers to the United States, typically to work in the STEM fields.