- Advocacy & Policy
- Research Center
April 14, 2010
Congress should fully support President Obama’s $19 billion proposal for the NASA budget, but should pay particular attention to a number of issues, said AIA President and CEO Marion C. Blakey in testimony today.
“We are encouraged that NASA’s proposal extends the International Space Station through at least 2020, funds valuable Earth and space science missions, renews technology development and innovation and promotes commercial spaceflight,” Blakey said at a hearing of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies. “However, the proposed cancellation of the Constellation program at the same time as the retirement of the Space Shuttle will cause residual impacts to the space industrial base and its highly trained workforce.”
It is critical to remember that it is the workforce – the engineers and skilled technicians – who are the backbone of our space leadership, Blakey continued.
Blakey also expressed alarm at the state of education for our young people, citing evidence of poor preparation for science, technology, engineering and mathematics careers.
“According to a survey done by Raytheon Company, most middle school students said they would rather do one of the following instead of their math homework: clean their room, eat their vegetables, go to the dentist or take out the garbage,” said Blakey.
Blakey repeated her call for a specific strategy that sets clear goals, milestones and timelines for human exploration beyond low Earth orbit with the necessary funds to achieve the desired goals.