S. 153 would modify the requirements and selection criteria of several National Science Foundation programs to promote wider participation by veterans. The bill also would direct the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) to establish an interagency working group to improve participation by veterans in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields, and to develop a strategic plan to address barriers for veterans in those fields. Finally, S. 153 would require the Government Accountability Office to study the academic success rates of veterans pursuing STEM degrees.
Based on the costs of similar activities, CBO estimates that implementing the bill would cost $1 million over the 2019-2024 period; such spending would be subject to the availability of appropriated funds. Most of that amount would be for additional OSTP staff to manage working group activities and prepare the strategic plan.