Capitol Hill Visits

Capitol Hill Visits

Throughout the year, OSA offers its members the opportunity to meet directly with U.S. senators and representatives. These meetings give the scientific community a voice in the halls of Congress - calling on elected officials to recognize the importance of science and technology, keep federal R&D funding levels consistent and sustainable, and support science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education programs. OSA organizes all aspects of the visits, from scheduling individual appointments to providing participants with detailed background information and talking points.

Each Spring, OSA members join over 250 participants from the Science, Engineering and Technology Working Group in the annual Congressional Visits Day (SET CVD). All OSA members are invited to participate.

Join us for Congressional Visits Day 2015

March 17 & 18, 2015

OSA, along with its National Photonics Initiative (NPI) partners, are participating in the annual Congressional Visits Day (CVD) taking place in Washington, DC on March 17-18, 2015. 

With so many new members of Congress, this is a great opportunity to establish a relationship with your Congressional offices and to educate your members of Congress on the importance of optics and photonics.
OSA will be participating in this annual event to talk about the importance of R&D funding, the NPI, and discuss other relevant legislation such as the America COMPETES Act.  Last year, OSA and the NPI had several legislative successes all thanks to the advocacy efforts by OSA and NPI members communicating with their members of Congress.  The more members we have participate in these efforts, the better chance of success.
Each participant will be placed on a combined society team based on your geographic region. There will be training on March 17 in Washington, DC focusing on the NPI and how to have an effective meeting. That evening, you will have the opportunity to join colleagues at a reception on Capitol Hill. On March 18, you and your team will visit your Congressional representatives. Society staff will schedule and coordinate your day and will escort you to all of your meetings.

If you are interested in participating in the Congressional Visits Day 2015, please sign up on the NPI CVD webpage. 

If you have any questions about CVD, please contact Brandy Dillingham at

Student Travel Grants - Congressional Visits Day 2015
We have a limited amount of travel grants available for students to participate in Congressional Visits Day 2015.  A special thanks to Thorlabs for their generous support.  Please note, if you received the travel grant to participate in last year's Congressional Visits Day, you are not eligible for this year's travel grant.  To apply, see the student travel grant form. If you have questions, please contact Brandy Dillingham at  

Congressional Visits Day 2014

The National Photonics Initiative (NPI) headed to Capitol Hill on March 25-26, 2014 for the annual Science-Engineering-Technology Working Group Congressional Visits Day (CVD).  The NPI participants discussed the NPI, the National Defense Authorization Act, America COMPETES Act, and the Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act.


Recently-Sponsored Capitol Hill Visits:

Congressional Visits Day 2013

Congressional Visits Day 2012

District Visits:

OSA staff is happy to assist members who wish to visit the local state or district office of their senators or representative. Members of Congress typically work in their district office during Congressional recesses, such as the summer district work period during the month of August. Congressional recess dates are available here:

House Schedule
Senate Schedule

OSA staff can also assist OSA Corporate Members who are interested in inviting a senator or representative to tour their company or facility.

If you are interested in scheduling a visit with your federal legislator(s) in your state, please contact the OSA government relations team at

Congressional Visits Day 2013 was held on March 12th and 13th in Washington, D.C.

View photos.

District Visits were held during the 2012 summer recess.

View photos.

Congressional Visits Day 2012 was held on April 23rd and 24th in Washington, D.C.

View photos.


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