September 11, 2018

University of Hawaii Awarded More than $4.1 Million to Broaden Participation in STEM Workforce

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Senator Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) announced that the National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded more than $4.1 million to the University of Hawaii to promote diversity and improve engagement in the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. The University of Hawaii will receive $3,824,364 through the Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation Program (LSAMP) and $299,208 through the Improving Undergraduate STEM Education (IUSE) program.

“As the need for STEM workers continue to grow, we must ensure that students in Hawaii have every opportunity to pursue college degrees in these fields,” Senator Hirono said. “This funding will support University of Hawaii efforts to encourage Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander students to pursue STEM careers and monitor participation by traditionally underrepresented groups in UH’s STEM pipeline.”

Senator Hirono has continued to advocate for federal programs that promote a strong STEM workforce by broadening participation for women, minorities, and other traditionally underrepresented groups. Earlier this year, the Senator led a letter with four of her colleagues calling on NSF to maintain funding for its programs that broaden participation for women and minorities, including the LSAMP and IUSE programs.

In 2016, the Senator convened a Senate Small Business Committee and Entrepreneurship field hearing at Maui High School to hear from national experts, including NSF, and local stakeholders regarding the importance of promoting more women and minorities in the STEM workforce. In 2017, Senator Hirono reintroduced her legislative plan to increase opportunities for women and minorities in STEM, which included two bills that would improve diversity and competitiveness in the STEM workforce by making sure women and minority students have opportunities to succeed.