Recommendations for the future of nuclear education and technology

October 30, 2002

ALBANY, N.Y. - Attendees at a major conference in the Capital Region convened to hammer out recommendations for solving the looming shortage of a qualified nuclear workforce and to strengthen collaborations between universities, industry, and government.

The conference, titled Universities, Industry, and Government: Partners for the Future of Nuclear Education and Technology, was sponsored by Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the Nuclear Energy Institute, and the U.S. Department of Energy.

"The continued availability of an essential reservoir of qualified personnel is critical to ensuring nuclear safety and security, encouraging nuclear innovation, and making certain that the benefits of nuclear energy-related not only to power generation but also to nuclear medicine, industrial radiology, and a host of other nuclear applications--remain available for future generations," said Rensselaer President Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson, who is the former Chair of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. "We must assure excellence in American research, teaching, technology transfer, entrepreneurship, and safety in the peaceful applications of nuclear energy. To do this requires the cooperation of leaders in government, industry, and academe."

Panelists from the nation's leading research universities, government agencies, national laboratories, and nuclear industries addressed nuclear workforce needs, R&D, national security, business partnerships, and the role of the regulatory community.

Conference participants broke out into three subject groups and identified key action items to foster collaboration. They include:

Educating tomorrow's nuclear workforce:
Chaired by Beverly Hartline, Deputy Laboratory Director, Argonne National Laboratory Collaborative approaches to address education and R&D needs:
Chaired by Tom Isaacs, Director, Policy, Planning, and Special Studies, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Addressing the needs and adjusting the role of the federal government:
Chaired by Robert Long, GPU Nuclear The panelists and presenters included: About Rensselaer

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, is the nation's oldest technological university. The school offers degrees in engineering, the sciences, information technology, architecture, management, and the humanities and social sciences. Rensselaer faculty are known for pre-eminence in research conducted in a wide range of research centers that are characterized by strong industry partnerships. The Institute is especially well known for its success in the transfer of technology from the laboratory to the marketplace so that new discoveries and inventions benefit human life, protect the environment, and strengthen economic development.

CONTACT: Steve Kerekes, Nuclear Energy Institute, 202-739-8073.

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

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