Professor Jin Montclare spoke to Congress about supporting science and entrepreneurship
Earlier this year, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) named Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Jin Kim Montclare a 2019-20 AAAS Leshner Public Engagement Fellow.
This month, that public engagement included addressing the members of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Science, Space and Technology.
There, Montclare spoke about how funding basic science could catalyze job growth and lent her support to the Engineering Biology Research and Development Act of 2019 (H.R. 7171), which calls for a coordinated federal research program to ensure continued United States leadership in engineering biology. (The members of this cohort of Fellows work in the field of human augmentation, studying technologies that attempt to temporarily or permanently change the capabilities of the human body.)
Among Montclare’s major points:
Entrepreneurship training increases the likelihood of innovative ideas entering the market and impacting economic development, and taking innovation into the public sphere has a direct impact on the economy. (She pointed to the NSF I-Corps initiative, which has thus far catalyzed some 600 startups and generated over $200 million in private investment, as proof.)
Technology has the potential to benefit all Americans but to achieve that full potential, it must be designed with the perspective of all Americans. (She brought up that currently just 13% of engineers in the workforce are women, and only 6% are Black.)
It may not be every day that an NYU Tandon professor has the ears of an august body of politicians, but Montclare made the most of her time on the Hill, and her advocacy is a prime example of the Tandon commitment to making an impact on society.