Proposed Legislation to Create Early-Career Postdoctoral Fellowship Program

The U.S. House Science, Space, and Technology Committee Chairwoman Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Texas) along with Ranking Member Frank Lucas (R-Okla.), Reps. Don Beyer (D-Va.), Mike Garcia (R-Calif.), Dan Lipinski (D-Ill.), Randy Weber (R-Texas), Suzanne Bonamici (D-Ore.), Anthony Gonzalez (R-Ohio), Paul D. Tonko (D-N.Y.), and Steve Cohen (D-Tenn.) introduced the Supporting Early-Career Researchers Act. This legislation would create a new postdoctoral fellowship program at the National Science Foundation to help keep early-career researchers whose employment opportunities have been impacted by the COVID-19 health crisis in the STEM pipeline. The goal of this fellowship program would be to prevent the loss of research talent due to job market disruptions caused by any economic decline during and after the pandemic.

“For established researchers, the COVID-19 crisis has severely limited their access to their laboratory space. But for early-career researchers, these disruptions come at a critical juncture in their research career, threatening to derail their career path,” Johnson said. “The Supporting Early-Career Researchers Act would provide a much-needed bridge to help early-career researchers weather this storm and prevent a permanent loss of STEM talent our nation can ill afford.”

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