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STEM Education Should be a National Security Priority

Illustrations © James Vaughan, and used by permission. More of his work can be found here:

By James Brahm


Spacepower is an inherently technological instrument of politics and a state’s ability to exert influence in the space domain is linked to its technical-informational base. Many proposals to adapt the Department of Defense (DoD) to a more technological future focus on either 1) improving the efficiency by which the DoD accesses capabilities in the defense industrial base; or 2) increasing the proportion of the overall industrial base accessible to the DoD. These proposals fail to fully address the nature of great power competition in the 21st century. A comprehensive understanding of national security policy ought to prioritize scientific and technological education. Education fortifies defense needs by increasing the capacity of the scientific base, developing the technical understanding of non-technologists, improving resilience to disinformation, and inspiring interest in space and other abstract domains.


In The Soldier and the State, political theorist Samuel Huntington defines the role of a military professional as “the management of violence.”[1] Most colloquial definitions of violence relate to the use of physical force to cause damage[2] – a limitation on the role of the military professional that is less relevant in an era of great power competition across all domains. This paper will lay out a case for why the American education system ought to be considered by military professionals as an attribute of national security despite falling outside of “the management of violence”. It will also show why the new U.S. Space Force (USSF) is well-positioned to develop thought leaders on the defense relevance of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education. Finally, it will provide policy suggestions to initiate a debate on the relationship between nationals security and education policy.

Toward a More Technological Defense Industrial Base

A mainstay of American security since at least 1940 has been its industrial strength. Most notably, the United States served as the “Arsenal of Democracy” during the Second World War – producing 324,000 aircraft and 88,000 tanks in only a few years.[3] Today, manufacturing capacity is not the only characteristic of a capable defense industrial base,[4] which is fortunate for the United States as the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is the largest manufacturer by output.[5] Instead, national security is reliant on a complex synthesis of the people, knowledge, capital, and systems required to turn information into useful products – including weapons.[6]

The increasing technological requirements of national defense have gone far from unnoticed. Much of the current literature assumes that military technology will rely on commonality with commercial technology, or indeed, off-the-shelf commercial acquisition. For example, the Center for a New American Security recommends modernizing the defense industrial base by incentivising cooperation with commercial suppliers and prioritizing basic research in the National Defense Strategy.[7] Much of the current literature on the topic has focused on reversing the trend of a consolidated defense industry separate from mainstream commercial firms.[8] An endless parade of organizations claiming expertise in “innovation” such as the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU), AFWERX, CyberWorx, and now SpaceWERX seek to engage with the commercial tech sector.[9] Other commentators have noted that the DoD directly competes – and loses – against the private sector for talent.[10]

What these approaches have in common is the tacit assumption that the United States’ technological capabilities are, from a military perspective, fixed. By contrast, this paper argues for a defense policy shift toward changing the makeup and capacity of the national technological base. The United States should not seek to emulate Chinese governance, but it is worth noting that great power competition via technological progress is and remains a priority for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).[11]

An Imperative for Space Force Professionals

In order to respond to the challenges of the 21st century, professionals in the U.S. military must concern themselves with STEM education at a national level as a major defense priority. The new U.S. Space Force is positioned to represent this interest within the broader defense community for two reasons.

First, as a technological force, the Space Force would benefit most from a stronger and more technologically capable defense industrial base. In addition to the vast and deep scientific base required to put things into space, conflict in space will advantage parties with the digital infrastructure to receive and process information, make automated decisions, and execute “at machine speeds”[12] in a sort of digital Observe-Orient-Decide-Act (OODA) loop.[13] For instance, national commitment to a broad, universal STEM education would help with 1) rapidly delivering technologies relevant to space warfighting; 2) improving the ability for policymakers to harness technological capabilities in support of national objectives; and 3) enhancing the United States’ resilience to the political and social impacts of space warfare.

Second, as a new service, the USSF can take its unique ‘clean sheet’ advantage to redefine the professional expertise of its members. This is an advantage because with any large organization, there are established competencies and often cultural inertia biased towards prioritization of past successes.[14] It is particularly necessary today, when the latest National Defense Strategy and other military guidance is riddled with uncritical references to ‘lethality,’[15] despite the fact that the current lethality-focused force has not always translated into success in achieving U.S. policy goals.[16] Cultural resistance to non-traditional means of warfighting can be difficult to overcome, and likely explains why the Army, Navy, and Air Force dragged their heels for decades before considering cyberwarfare as a warfighting tool.[17]

There has not yet been a casualty as a direct result of space warfare, and in a domain characterized by inanimate satellites, space warfare is not likely to become highly lethal soon. However, space professionals are unlikely to mistake non-lethality for irrelevance given that even reversible, non-kinetic actions in space can still decisively support, or harm, U.S. interests.[18]

Military Relevance of STEM Education

Proposals to reform the defense acquisition process or the entire defense industry are, as of yet, insufficient to address the growing problem of competing in an increasingly technological world. In addition to facilitating competition played out in the traditional domains between states such as economic, military, and diplomatic power, high technology is a direct arena of competition with peer rivals such as the PRC. In a recent talk at the University of Oxford, retired U.S. Army Lieutenant General Michael Nagata said that the “decisive high ground” is no longer material – rather, “winning and losing, whether in strategic competition or in armed conflict, is being decided by how well or how poorly the contestants involved can understand and effectively employ exponential technologies that flow from today’s digital age.”[19] This statement is striking because Nagata was a longtime leader of Special Forces in Somalia, Afghanistan, and Iraq, conflicts different from the great power competition described.

Technology as an arena of great power competition is reflected in fears of the internet bifurcating between a PRC-led hemisphere and an American/European/Japanese led hemisphere.[20] Not coincidentally, there is evidence of the same hemispheric split in space exploration. In addition to threatening U.S. material interests as an economic and informational hegemon, domination of technology by authoritarian regimes undermines American values and belief in free government as expressed in Paine’s Common Sense,[21] Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address,[22] and Roosevelt’s Atlantic Charter.[23]

Including education as a component of national security is necessary to appropriately, and ethically, address the strategic threats that the United States faces today – and the idea that education is a moral imperative of national importance is far from new. In his farewell address, Washington counseled the nation to “Promote then, as an object of primary importance, institutions for the general diffusion of knowledge.”[24] The year after the original ‘Sputnik moment,’ President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed into law the National Defense Education Act alongside legislation creating the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA).[25]

It is unclear whether there will be a similarly galvanizing moment in the 21st century. Perhaps history will show that it was in March 2018, when a system built on the PRC-designed Sunway SW26010 many-core architecture became the most powerful supercomputer in the world.[26] Or perhaps it will derive from the PRC’s “nearly unlimited” investments in quantum communication and computing.[27] Alternately, perhaps Russia is right that their Sputnik V vaccine is a replay of their achievements in space exploration.[28] Finally, rather than a single event, perhaps the PRC being the only major economy to grow in 2020 is another “Sputnik Moment” for the Untied States.[29]

There is no consensus as to what specific technological fields will define competition between great powers in the years to come. Former Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis identified that “advanced computing, big data analytics, artificial intelligence, autonomy, robotics, miniaturization, additive manufacturing, directed energy, and hypersonics” as technologies that may even “change the character of war.”[30] Unlike specific policies that only promote specific technologies, prioritising STEM education as a strategic defense project would have a positive impact on national security across the board. Four mechanisms are identified here. First, it would increase the technical capabilities available to the defense industrial base by increasing the number and skill of scientists and engineers. Second, it would improve the technological understanding of policymakers. Third, it would make the nation more resilient to disinformation. Finally, STEM education is a critical path to inspiring interest in space and other high technology sectors.

Supply of Technologists

The term “Third Offset,”[31] popularized by former Deputy Secretary of Defense Bob Work, describes a strategy of using cutting-edge, commercial technology to compete with quantitatively superior adversaries, may have fallen out of favour since 2017,[32] but the belief that future warfare will be more dependent on technology than ever still runs strongly through the defense community. The 2018 unclassified summary of the National Defense Strategy quotes “advanced computing, ‘big data’ analytics, artificial intelligence, autonomy, robotics, directed energy, hypersonics, and biotechnology” as crucial to fighting and winning the wars of the future.[33] It further states that the DoD will “complement our current workforce with information experts, data scientists, computer programmers, and basic science researchers and engineers.” It stands to reason that these experts must come from somewhere – but the most substantive treatment of education in the National Defense Strategy is one paragraph emphasizing lethality in Professional Military Education (PME).[34]

The demand for technologists is not limited to the industrial base. A 2014 RAND study addressed gaps in various career fields between the actual numbers of Air Force officers with a STEM degree versus the target number of officers with a STEM degree.[35] The proposed solutions include incentives, monetary and otherwise, for technically proficient officers to stay on active service. Likewise, many writings propose changes to personnel accession to emphasise STEM skills.[36] These approaches, while prudent, are insufficient because they fail to address that this is not an Air Force, Space Force, or even DoD problem – it is an American problem.

Though motivations such as national service change the hiring problem for the DoD, it still must draw from the same limited labor pool as the private sector.[37] Given that the private sector also faces shortages of STEM professionals, especially in computing,[38] it is worth prioritizing increasing the pool of technologists. While this is an American problem, it is not a Chinese problem: mainland China graduates millions in science and engineering every year and that number continues to increase rapidly.[39]

STEM education is a direct factor in the quantity and quality of STEM professionals available in the national workforce. There is evidence across multiple studies that the amount of exposure to STEM disciplines received at a young age influences both the performance of students in STEM courses later in life and their likelihood of studying a STEM subject at a university level.[40] Also of interest are Americans who begin studying a science or engineering discipline but do not complete or switch degrees — indicating a potential passion for the subject that is not actualized. The strongest single factor in predicting attrition is inadequate preparation in science and mathematics, resulting in a “weed out” effect that artificially limits the talent pool in the STEM field.[41] There are policy interventions available that remove obstacles from the paths of Americans passionate about STEM, so that more talented scientists and engineers are available to the DoD — and to the nation.

Technological Understanding of non-Technologists

STEM education as a strategic priority does not negate the importance of non-STEM disciplines, nor does it imply that simply forcing or encouraging more people to get a bachelor’s degree in a STEM discipline would be a solution. STEM education should be a foundation developed during mandatory, universal education. This will result in higher numbers of people choosing STEM disciplines as a focus as described above, but another impact will be that those who specialise in non-STEM areas or work in policymaking roles will have more first-hand exposure to technology.

Currently, policymakers are in danger of being “out-scienced” by experts so dramatically that they are unable to even formulate what questions to ask — much less make informed decisions about potentially world-changing technology.[42] One way to guarantee that elected officials, appointees, and civil servants have foundational understanding of technical issues is to ensure that everyone gets a strong technical education.

Benefits of STEM understanding in governance are not limited to policymakers and solutions targeted purely toward them are insufficient. Unlike in authoritarian political systems, policy decisions in the United States, even those centered on highly technical issues, are influenced by the public.[43]

Space professionals in the United States should note that space related-activities benefit from high public opinion across partisan and demographic lines with Pew surveys indicating that 72% believe that “it is essential for the United States to continue to be a world leader in space exploration” and 80% agreeing that the International Space Station has been a good use of taxpayer dollars.[44] However, this public support should not be taken for granted. While many Americans believe that human spaceflight will become much more common in the next 50 years, their affection for exploration does not necessarily translate to military activities; 60% of U.S. adults disapproved of the creation of the U.S. Space Force only a few months before its genesis.[45] If the American public does not understand space activities — and thus the importance of space activities, space risks the same fate as nuclear power, which saw a 30 year hiatus of plant construction after the Three Mile Island[46] accident despite decisive evidence that nuclear power is safer than other forms of power.[47]

Resilience to Space Warfare Disinformation

The establishment of the USSF was attributed to be an acknowledgment that space is a warfighting domain rather than merely support for other domains.[48] Carl von Clausewitz once said that war is politics by other means.[49] In 1998, two People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Colonels wrote Unrestricted Warfare[50] advocating that war is politics by any means necessary. They emphasised that there is no such thing as a limited battlefield, and that there are blurred lines between soldier and civilian. The colonels predict that civilian life in home countries will be targeted, even if by less lethal means than the carpet bombing campaigns of WWII or hypothesised thermonuclear scenarios of the Cold War (and today).[51]

There are two primary ways that civilian populations can be targeted via space warfare. The first is direct military action intended to inflict pain on civilians, or to disrupt the economic capability to support a war elsewhere. There are numerous examples of ways that spacepower can impact people’s everyday lives around the planet.[52] However, it is a mistake to assume that the ability to search “shawarma near me” is representative of the influence of space technologies. Satellite communications also come to mind – but perhaps more significant than data routed through satellite is that even some ground-based communications depend on the authoritative timing provided by GPS.[53]

A second means of targeting civilians is disinformation, a salient method for attacks on core American interests. Space has so far been the subject of very few, if any, major disinformation campaigns, but it is potentially a ripe target; it is a complex topic with high and increasing relevance to society, yet most people have little day to day familiarity with space issues. Being under informed about scientific facts and processes is known to increase susceptibility to becoming misinformed.[54]

Technical issues with similar characteristics have already become prominent themes of disinformation. For example, the European External Action Service has found that Kremlin-affiliated actors have disseminated disinformation about the COVID-19 pandemic, exploiting people’s limited background knowledge about viruses, vaccinations, and governmental structures.[55] With regard to cyberspace, the domain is so poorly understood that misinformation can be found in The New York Times headlines and on the Defense Intelligence Agency’s Twitter feed.[56]

The 2020 Defense Space Strategy identifies that “public understanding of their reliance on space systems, the changing character of the space domain, and the growing counterspace threats to the United States and its allies and partners remains cursory.”[57] Complex issues regarding access to and operations in space could be the target of major disinformation campaigns, possibly coordinated with direct attacks on space-based capabilities. Strategies focused on countering or deterring malicious information operations are worth pursuing, but a public that is better educated on space issues would be more resilient to disinformation, indirectly aiding efforts to counter such operations.

STEM Education as Inspiration

In his well-known speech at Rice University, President John F. Kennedy asserted that space exploration was the best way “to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills.”[58] A principal long-term benefit of such national projects is inspiring future generations to pursue challenges they would not have otherwise considered. General John Hyten is one of the many people today who works in space because of the Apollo program. At events, he often mentions that he was inspired by growing up in a town that would regularly shake from the Saturn V’s first stage being test-fired.[59] America’s moonshot has continued to inspire interest in STEM for decades – it is not surprising that the Air Force Association notes a history of applied science in places such as Huntsville, Alabama – designated a center of excellence, even in unrelated STEM disciplines such as cybersecurity.[60]

The images of reusable boosters landing on droneships and a Tesla Roadster soaring through the Solar System are burned into the minds of many.[61] It is plausible that this has already inspired some young people to pursue further study or even a career in the scientific, engineering, and computing technologies that made these achievements possible. However, such highly visible achievements are not the only exciting developments taking place. Messaging plays a role; this past April, General Jay Raymond catapulted the space tracking mission at Peterson Air Force Base into public consciousness by Tweeting “#spaceishard” in reference to his assessment of the Iranian launch of their NOUR 01 imaging satellite.[62]

By increasing the general population’s familiarity with cutting-edge scientific domains, America increases the galvanizing effect of events previously not relevant to most people. For example, the claim of quantum supremacy[63] by Google’s Quantum AI Lab or the operation of four JAXA rovers[64] on an asteroid are more provocative to those more familiar with the domains. Interest in STEM topics feeds back into the other mechanisms by which education supports national security by bolstering the pool of technologists available to the defense informational base and providing a useful foundation of knowledge to policy elites and the general public alike.

Proposed Actions

This paper aims to initiate a debate on the relationship between the national security policy and the STEM education received by every American, and in particular, to bring attention to the crucial importance of education to great power competition in the 21st century. [65] Long-term planning in the United States is often limited to the length of a presidential term, or even a fiscal year as Congressional priorities change.[66] Many commentaries on the need for technological expertise in government propose valuable ideas that can be implemented within this timeframe: opportunities for uniformed and civilian government employees to pursue additional education mid-career, changes to promotion and compensation systems to reward technological expertise, and opportunities for talent to crossflow between academia, government, and the commercial sector.[67]

These strategies are important, but it should be emphasised that the United States’ current situation is not a recent phenomenon. A Department of Education report noted that in 2003, only 4% of U.S. university graduates majored in engineering. In Europe, often considered a relatively close cultural analogue to the United States, 13% of graduates were engineers, still behind Asia at 20%.[68] The same report noted that 84% of the U.S. public believed that future jobs would require math and science skills, and 88% agreed that students with those skills had an advantage when applying to university.[69] Long-term, multi-administration planning is crucial to ensuring that the youth of today are equipped with the knowledge and thinking skills to support a free and safe America in 2050.

Teaching young Americans to write a Python script or calculate a Fourier transform will not make tomorrow’s DoD more lethal, it will not fix the F-35’s logistics system[70], and it will not smooth the United States’s pending withdrawal from Afghanistan.[71] In fact, it will not solve any problems in the short-term. But a strategic emphasis on STEM education will strengthen the American position on the world stage in the coming decades.

Course of Action I: Educational Funding

First and most, education should be funded in accordance with its status as a strategic national priority. In fiscal year 2017, funding for U.S. school systems totaled $694 billion, with the vast majority being paid by state and local governments.[72] The federal budget for defense in recent years has ballooned to over $733 billion, despite having a far more limited role in society.[73]

Eisenhower in 1946, reflecting on the Second World War, noted that “despite a common notion to the contrary, teachers and soldiers are working for the same ideal. Both are hoping that out of the suffering and sacrifice of the last war will come a world ruled by law. Both are striving to achieve national security.”[74] Twelve years later, he would sign into law the National Defense Education Act with the explicit hope that better-funded schools would enable the United States to compete with the Soviet Union and Communism.[75]

Though national security and education have only become more intertwined in their objectives, both legal and cultural barriers prevent talent, interest, and resources for one sector to be applied to the other. An indirect way to promote STEM education is to repeal the Mansfield Amendment to the Defense Procurement Act of 1970[76] and the later Mansfield Amendment of 1973[77] (distinct from the Mansfield Amendment of 1971 relating to troops in Europe), which prevented ARPA and the broader defense community from funding scientific research without a direct military application.

These measures were intended to reduce redundancies by centralizing pure scientific research under the purview of the National Science Foundation (NSF), but have had a lasting impact in discouraging motivations other than ‘science for science’s sake’ being used to advocate for pure research. Allowing non-NSF agencies to request funding from Congress for pure research would allow for a more diverse set of priorities to influence funding decisions: in this case, allowing scientific research to be justified as a priority for national security.

Course of Action II: Expansion of STEM Education

Scientific and technological research promotes STEM education through a myriad of mechanisms, but direct action should also be taken to improve the public’s foundational STEM education. An likely controversial proposal is to consider expanding the expected public education beyond thirteen years, such as by providing two years of community-college to all young Americans.[78]

A crucial challenge of reshaping STEM education will be changing the expectation of what topics are covered. In the 20th century, three scientific domains reshaped the world: electronics,[79] space,[80] and subatomic physics[81] (including nuclear weapons[82] and power). Secondary curricula in the United States have almost completely failed to teach these commensurate with their significance.[83] The quantity of relevant concepts indisputably increased, without a commensurate increase in time allocated. Space, computing, and nuclear technologies continue to be instrumental in the 21st century and will almost be joined by at least two more scientific domains in prominence: statistical learning and quantum information processing. If a liberal education is to equip Americans with the tools to be full participants in society, it is worth considering the extension of universal public education by two to four years, with additional time devoted to ensuring that every student has a background in physics, calculus, programming, and the fundamentals of information technology.

Course of Action III: Changing the Character of STEM Education

Changing the character of STEM education is another path of action. A Pew Research survey found that over half of Americans said the primary reason that people do not pursue STEM subjects is that they are too hard.[84] The same survey found more people were interested in STEM subjects than ended up pursuing them.[85] One cultural change to combat this challenge may be to shift messaging away from surviving ‘weed out’ courses in advanced mathematics and instead emphasize the individuality and creativity inherent to STEM disciplines. Rather than reenacting a predefined series of steps, technical work usually requires flexible application of techniques to solve a given problem. In fact, anything that does not require creativity can be automated – an additional benefit of teaching programming and information technology.[86]

A sense of patriotism, excitement, and adventure are top reasons that people join the armed forces.[87] The Space Force played on this in its first ad, telling potential recruits: “Maybe you weren’t put here just to ask the questions. Maybe you were put here to be the answer.”[88] Just as USSF would benefit from a larger, more motivated pool of science-savvy recruits, the nation could also benefit from USSF playing a messaging role in emphasizing the patriotism, creativity, and real-world impact of high-technology fields.


At least part of the answer to reforming American society to engender success in the 21st century’s great power competition must include education as a strategic priority worthy of consideration by the national security community. Beginning a new national drive for STEM education would improve the position of the United States as a technological, and therefore global, power. The U.S. Space Force is positioned to define a new niche in the national security apparatus and including domestic elements into the conception that ‘best military advice’ would open doors for further discussion and thought regarding ways to best protect American interests – whether on the terrestrial battlefield, in space, or at home.

Lieutenant James Brahm, USAF, is a distinguished graduate from the U.S. Air Force Academy, as well as a Truman Scholar and Rhodes Scholar. This paper represents solely the author’s views and do not necessarily represent the official policy or position of any Department or Agency of the U.S. Government. If you have a different perspective, we’d like to hear from you.



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  65. Specifically referencing programs broader than specific incentives tied to DoD work such as Scholarship for Service:
  66. Skidmore, David. “China’s Reputation for Long-Range Planning is Wildly Exaggerated.” The Diplomat, March 22, 2019.
  67. Barnett, Jackson. “‘Stem Corps’ legislation would fill DOD’s gaps in tech talent.” FedScoop, April 14, 2020.
  68. Dugger, William E. “Evolution of STEM in the United States.” In the 6th Biennial International Conference on Technology Education Research’nda sunulmuş bildiri, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia. 2010.
  69. Dugger, William E. “Evolution of STEM in the United States.” In the 6th Biennial International Conference on Technology Education Research’nda sunulmuş bildiri, Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia. 2010.
  70. Insinna, Valerie. “Bad data in F-35 logistics system resulting in lost missions.” Defense News, January 31, 2019.
  71. Welna, David and Dwyer, Colin. “U.S. Signs Peace Deal with Taliban After Nearly 2 Decades Of War In Afghanistan.” NPR, February 29, 2020.
  72. “U.S. School Spending Per Pupil Increased for Fifth Consecutive Year, U.S. Census Bureau Reports.” U.S. Census Bureau, May 21, 2019.
  73. Cancian, Mark F. “U.S. Military Forces in FY 2020: The Strategic and Budget Context,” Center for Strategic and International Studies, September 30, 2019.
  74. Eisenhower, Dwight D., Chester W. Nimitz, and AA Vandegrift. “Liberal Education in the Military Forces (A SYMPOSIUM).” The Journal of General Education 1, no. 1 (1946): 34-38.
  75. Hunt, Thomas C. “National Defense Education Act,” Britannica.
  76. “Public Law 91-121 of November 19, 1969”: 204.
  77. “The Mansfield Amendment,” National Science Foundation.
  78. Duncan, Arne and Bridgeland, John. “Free college for all will power our 21st-century economy and empower our democracy.” Brookings Institution, September 17, 2018.
  79. Riordan, Michael, Lillian Hoddeson, and Conyers Herring. “The invention of the transistor.” In More Things in Heaven and Earth, pp. 563-578. Springer, New York, NY, 1999.
  80. Dick, Steven J. “Societal Impact of the Space Age,” NASA, April 04, 2005.
  81. National Research Council. Nuclear Physics: The Core of Matter, The Fuel of Stars. National Academies Press, 1999.
  82. Waltz, Kenneth N. “Nuclear myths and political realities.” The American Political Science Review (1990): 731-745.
  83. Bradby, Denise, Rosio Pedroso, and Andy Rogers. “Secondary School Course Classification System: School Codes for the Exchange of Data (SCED). NCES 2007-341.” National Center for Education Statistics (2007).
  84. Kennedy, Hefferon, and Funk. “Half of Americans think young people don’t pursue STEM because it is too hard.” Pew Research Center, January 17, 2018.
  85. Ibid.
  86. Magnusson, Niklas. “Human Bankers Are Losing to Robots as Nordea Sets a New Standard.” Bloomberg, July 29, 2018.
  87. Helmus, Todd C., S. Rebecca Zimmerman, Marek N. Posard, Jasmine L. Wheeler, Cordaye Ogletree, Quinton Stroud, and Margaret C. Harrell, Life as a Private: A Study of the Motivations and Experiences of Junior Enlisted Personnel in the U.S. Army. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation, 2018.
  88. “United States Space Force: Purpose: 30 Commercial.” YouTube, U.S. Air Force and Space Force Recruiting, 22 July 2020,


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