Senator Markey and NSF Director Panchanathan Tout Federal Support for Mass. Research and Innovation at Museum of Science Discussion with University Leaders

Watch the Discussion HERE

Boston (October 7, 2022) – At an event held today at the Boston Museum of Science, Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and National Science Foundation (NSF) Director Sethuraman Panchanathan led a lively discussion highlighting the critical work of Massachusetts college and university leaders and their role in driving tomorrow’s technologies and solutions as recipients of NSF grants. In Fiscal Year 2021, Massachusetts was home to more than $565 million in grants from NSF, an $8.8 billion independent federal agency supporting scientific research and education. Alongside Tim Ritchie, President of the Museum of Science, Senator Markey hosted leaders representing more than 50 colleges and university campuses in an event focused on issues such as STEM education, diversity in recruitment, recovering from impacts of the pandemic, and ensuring continued robust funding for NSF and grant recipients. Every year in Congress, Senator Markey leads the letter in the Senate for increased funding for the National Science Foundation, which includes $11 billion for the coming 2023 Fiscal Year. 

“National Science Foundation support is the lifeblood that helps ensure Massachusetts remains a national and global leader in the solutions for the largest scientific and technological challenges we face,” said Senator Markey at today’s event. “The funding NSF provides today is the key to unlocking the future cures, prevention models, and energy production technologies to prevent and reverse the impacts of the climate crisis. Ensuring our universities, laboratories, and research institutes receive the NSF support that fosters breakthroughs will ensure diversity in the talent pipeline, create a more accessible society, and conquer the current and future pandemics. I thank Dr. Panchanathan for bringing his leadership and insights to Massachusetts and the Museum of Science, where the dreams of current and future students and researchers can become reality.”

Panchanathan delivered remarks highlighting NSF’s support in awarding grants to Massachusetts innovators and academics who have made significant contributions in science and industry. He stressed the impact NSF has made in advancing scientific progress while ensuring accessibility and inclusivity in research and innovation.

“The Museum of Science is a place where community comes together to inspire curiosity and to advance our vision of a world where science belongs to each of us for the good of all us,” said Tim Ritchie, president of the Museum of Science, Boston. “I am honored to welcome Senator Markey, Director Panchanathan, and leaders from our region’s top institutions to the Museum.  Together, we all have an important role to raise up our communities and drive innovation for the Commonwealth and for our nation.”

In the panel discussion with Massachusetts college and university leaders, Senator Markey and panelists also discussed equity issues related to recruitment of new talent into Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields and the level at which NSF-supported programs engage the nation’s diverse talent in strengthening and scaling research that will drive tomorrow’s technologies and solutions.

Senator Markey also touted the CHIPS and Science Act signed into law by President Biden this past August. During Senator Markey’s recent visit to Taiwan, he met with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company representatives to discuss partnerships to improve semiconductor supply chains and investment in the United States that will be made stronger and more resilient thanks in part to the CHIPS and Science Act.

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