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Stony Brook Student Advocates Urge Congress to Support NSF Research, Attend Workshop in DC

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Four Stony Brook University Advocacy Corps Students were selected by SBU’s Office of Federal Relations to attend the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)’ 2024 Catalyzing Advocacy in Science and Engineering (CASE) workshop in Washington, DC from April 14 through April 17.

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SBU Advocacy Corps students on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. (L-R: Swaneet Jha, Kristen Paravella, Mary Brantley and Eshwin Varghese)

During the CASE workshop, students learned from science policy and advocacy experts about the role of science in policymaking and the federal policymaking process. The workshop seeks to empower participants with ways to become a voice for research throughout their careers. Additionally, students learned about the structure and organization of Congress, the federal budget and appropriations processes, and tools for effective science communication and civic engagement. Students also participate in interactive seminars about policymaking and communication.

Following the workshop, SBU students visited Capitol Hill to meet with the staff of U.S. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Rep. Nick Lalota. During the meetings, the Advocacy Corps students urged Congress to make up for the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) FY24 deficit in FY25 by funding NSF at $11.9 billion in addition to fully funding the promises made in the CHIPS & Science Act. Ever since the drastic FY24 cuts to NSF were announced, Stony Brook University leadership and students have joined forces, tirelessly fighting for Congress to renew their commitment to federal science research across the board and specifically provide robust funding for NSF in FY25 federal appropriations.

The Advocacy Corps students who participated in the AAAS CASE workshop and subsequent Hill Day were Swaneet Jha, Kristen Paravella, Mary Brantley and Eshwin Varghese. The students’ visit to DC and congressional staff meetings were coordinated by SBU’s Office of Federal Relations located in Washington, DC.

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