The Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shall conduct, develop, support, promote, and coordinate formal and informal educational activities at all levels to enhance public awareness and understanding of ocean, coastal, Great Lakes, and atmospheric science and stewardship by the general public and other coastal stakeholders, including underrepresented groups in ocean and atmospheric science and policy careers. In conducting those activities, the Administrator shall build upon the educational programs and activities of the agency, with consideration given to the goal of promoting the participation of individuals identified in sections 1885a and 1885b of title 42 in STEM fields and in promoting the acquisition and retention of highly qualified and motivated young scientists to complement and supplement workforce needs.
The Administrator, appropriate National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration programs, ocean atmospheric science and education experts, and interested members of the public shall maintain a science education plan setting forth education goals and strategies for the Administration, as well as programmatic actions to carry out such goals and priorities over the next 20 years, and evaluate and update such plan every 5 years.
Nothing in this section may be construed to affect the application of section 1232a of title 20 or sections 794 and 794d of title 29.
In this section, the term “STEM” means the academic and professional disciplines of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.