Senator Martin Heinrich visited AFRL on December 20th to tour and highlight some of the funding from the National Defense Authorization Act that he helped secure.
Senator Heinrich toured the lab's STEM programs at its La Luz Academy where he met with students who have participated in the STARBASE program. STARBASE seeks to inspire 5th graders to explore STEM through hands-on learning in collaboration with military installations. During his visit, Senator Heinrich announced $25 million in authorized funding to continue the project nationwide.
Senator Heinrich also discussed giving the Department of Defense civilian on-campus recruiting authority which makes it easier for AFRL, and other installations specializing in research, development, testing and evaluation, to hire from New Mexico's academic institutions. In addition, he highlighted $183 million for research and development of directed energy (DE) weapon systems and other key advancements he secured in the National Defense Authorization Act to benefit New Mexico's men and women in uniform, military installations, national laboratories, and job creation throughout the state.