INL News Release
Aug. 27, 2013

Kortny Rolston, 208-526-4809,
Misty Benjamin, 208-351-9900,

New scholarship program offers energy internships to Idaho students

IDAHO FALLS — The Center for Advanced Energy Studies has launched a new scholarship program for Idaho students interested in performing energy-related research.

The new CAES Energy Scholars program is a mentored internship focused on providing students with a real-world experience addressing energy challenges.

The internship is conducted through Idaho National Laboratory and is located in Idaho Falls. INL will reach out to students at the three CAES partner universities — Boise State University, Idaho State University and University of Idaho — in the fall to recruit applicants for an internship in summer 2014.

"We really want to open the way for Idaho students to excel," said Steven Aumeier, CAES director and founder of the scholarship program. "We want to attract the best and the brightest, and send them off with the best background and education for their careers."

This summer’s interns, the first generation of Energy Scholars, are participating in a variety of research that addresses energy challenges: nuclear engineering, bioenergy, material science, modeling and simulation, and cybersecurity.

As CAES Energy Scholars, the students learn about leading energy research, policy and laboratory procedures to help cultivate research insight and technical skills. Interns are required to present on their research to other CAES and INL researchers.

"As a program participant, [interns] will develop research skills that will enable them to develop into a highly competitive candidates in the energy sector," said Erin Hanson, an intern program specialist at INL.

The inspiration for the CAES program came from Aumeier’s own experience as a funded nuclear engineering student fellow at Argonne National Laboratory. "I wouldn’t have gotten this far into working in laboratories without this kind of program," Aumeier said. “It is an investment in people, to help the Idaho students succeed; whether they leave Idaho or decide to stay —these investments need to be made."

Nathan Peterson, a UI mechanical engineering student, said, "This opportunity has prepared me for achieving my future goals by giving me an understanding of how to answer research questions. I have learned the process of acquiring funding, setting up an experiment, processing and reporting data."

"Being chosen as a CAES Energy Scholar has given me the privilege of meeting dedicated researchers and given me a unique insight into the research fields I would like to focus on in my future scientific career," said Sergio Hernandez, a microbiology student from ISU.

To be eligible for the programs, a student must be enrolled at a CAES-partner university and be pursuing a degree in energy policy, science, technology, engineering, math or a closely related field.

Successful applicants must prove academic strength, leadership, solid technical skills, an understanding of laboratory processes and an underlying interest in performing energy research must be demonstrated.

For further information on the CAES Energy Scholars program, students are encouraged to contact the Intern Program Specialist Erin Hanson at or (208) 526-0318.

INL is one of the DOE's 10 multiprogram national laboratories. The laboratory performs work in each of DOE's strategic goal areas: energy, national security, science and environment. INL is the nation's leading center for nuclear energy research and development. Day-to-day management and operation of the laboratory is the responsibility of Battelle Energy Alliance.

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