Category Archives: Collaborations/Interdisciplinary Opportunities

Join a consortium bid for USAID

Michigan Tech is responding to an opportunity to join a consortium in a bid to become a Research Technical Assistance Center for the USAID. This is a non-exclusive opportunity, with no funding at this time. Essentially, DAI Global (referenced in the email with more information below) is building a team and associated expertise for an initial bid to USAID. Should this bid be selected by USAID, it may lead to future opportunities that would require technical/research expertise from among the pool of expertise highlighted by the partners in the DAI team. In other words, there is no funding now but this could lead to funding in the future.
Michigan Tech is providing a letter of support/interest. Here is where your help is needed: DAI also needs individual statements of commitment from relevant faculty, postdocs, grad students, research scientists.  These must be received by February 28. The form is available by emailing Pete I have filled in some of the boilerplate information, the remaining items should only take a couple of minutes for each individual to complete. If you have interest in USAID work in developing countries, please consider taking a moment to fill in the attached form.
Forms can be emailed directly to DAI’s point of contact Anand Varghese at: or they can be forwarded to me and I will compile and send. Forms are needed by February 28, so this is a short timeline. I’ve included leaders of relevant areas on campus – please forward to others who may have interest. 
Our point of contact at DAI has offered to discuss and answer any questions that should arise. Let me know if you have any questions and I will work with Anand to address.
One final point: participation is non-exclusive and non-binding. Any interested individuals will have an opportunity to opt in or out of projects (should they arise) at a later date.
Pete (

ORAU Information: Member Only Opportunities and Announcements

University Partnerships Office (UPO) Annual Program Opportunities and Deadlines

One of the benefits of membership in the ORAU University Consortium is funding opportunities available only to member universities.  The following is a list of UPO’s FY 2018 program/event opportunities and deadlines.  All programs are subject to available funding and expect to be continued for future years. Questions on any of these programs should be addressed to

73rd Annual Meeting of the ORAU Council of Sponsoring Institutions – Less Than 2 Weeks to Register

Please register to attend the 2018 Annual Meeting of the Council of Sponsoring Institutions that will be held Tuesday, March 6th through Thursday, March 8th, 2018.  ORAU’s 73rd Annual Meeting of the Council of Sponsoring Institutions will be focused on “Public Health Security and Biological Threats.” The meeting will focus on the issues related to preparedness for bioterrorism and other major public health threats.  Your participation will provide an opportunity for you and your colleagues to discuss key science and technology challenges and opportunities. Experts and leaders from academia and federal agencies will share their views on the effective strategies for continued progress in areas of national importance for global health security.

During this year’s breaks, we will have opportunities where ORAU’s subject matter experts will be leading table topic discussions.  Specific topics will be indicated by signs on the tables and ORAU subject matter experts will be wearing green ribbons with the title “Program Subject Matter Expert.”  We encourage all speakers and attendees to gather in groups during the breaks to discuss common research interests and opportunities.  The topical areas include:

  • Data Analytics/Bioinformatics
  • Emergency Preparedness & Countermeasures
  • Radiation Exposure/Assessment
  • Health Communication Tools
  • Epidemiology/Risk Assessment
  • Scientific Assessment & Evaluation
  • STEM Education Faculty & Student Opportunities

Visit the 73rd Annual Meeting of the Council of Sponsoring Institutions official website to view the agenda and featured speakers as well as complete your registration. Please designate a proxy to attend if you are unable to attend.  Due to security requirements, registration for non-US Citizens closes on February 6, 2018 and registration for US Citizens closes on February 13, 2018.  If you have any questions send an email to

ORAU-Directed Research and Development Program:  Phase 2 Deadline March 26, 2018

The deadline for the ORAU-Directed Research and Development (ODRD) Program Phase 2 joint ORAU/university proposal submissions is March 26, 2018.  As a reminder, ODRD projects are joint collaborations consisting of innovative research-based approaches/solutions that fall within the intersection of ORAU’s core capabilities and our member universities research interests.

Universities may propose ODRD Concepts for potential collaboration with an ORAU subject matter expert (SME).  University ODRD concepts are vetted by each school’s ORAU Councilor and submitted on the Value Through Partnerships External SharePoint Site:  Research concepts need to be submitted as early as possible to provide sufficient time to develop the joint proposals.

After matching interests, Phase 1 and Phase 2 applications are submitted by the ORAU SME, on behalf of the collaboration team.  Phase 1 participation is not a requirement for Phase 2.  Phase 1 travel grants are considered on an on-going basis.

For additional program information, please visit the ODRD Program page on the ORAU website:

NASA Postdoctoral Fellowship


The NASA Postdoctoral Program offers U.S. and international scientists the opportunity to advance their research while contributing to NASA’s scientific goals. The NPP supports fundamental science; explores the undiscovered; promotes intellectual growth; and encourages scientific connections. Selected by a competitive peer-review process, NPP Fellows complete one- to three-year Fellowship appointments that advance NASA’s missions in earth science, heliophysics, planetary science, astrophysics, space bioscience, aeronautics and engineering, human exploration and space operations, and astrobiology.

Requirements: Applicants must have a Ph.D. or equivalent degree in hand before beginning the fellowship, but may apply while completing the degree requirements. U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents, and foreign nationals eligible for J-1 status as a Research Scholar, may apply.

Benefits: Stipends start at $60,000 per year, with supplements for high cost-of-living areas and for certain academic specialties. Financial assistance is available for relocation as well as subsidized health insurance, and $10,000 per year is provided for professional and programmatic travel.

Apply: Applications are accepted three times each year:
• March 1
• July 1
• November 1

Contact:   |   Email:

Instructors Needed for Summer Youth Programs

As Summer Youth Programs (SYP) gears up for another exciting season, we are constantly seeking ways to make explorations engaging, impactful and fun for all participants.

With the semester coming to a close, enrollment is strong—more than 360 participants have already enrolled, with several major program deadlines rapidly approaching. We have hired nearly 65 undergraduate and graduate student staff, built our executive team and begun preparations for our annual move to Wadsworth Hall.

At this time, one remaining hurdle is finding instructors and TA’s to deliver academic curriculum for several of our popular explorations. What does it take to be an SYP Instructor or TA? Enthusiasm is a must, and previous classroom experience is ideal. If you are interested in delivering structured, hands-on learning to excited and engaged students from across the country, we’d love to hear from you. Learn more at SYP Instructors.

Here is a list of courses for which we are still hiring instructors:

  • Digital Photography (June 18 – 22 and June 25 – 29)
    • Instructors Needed: 1 – TAs: 1
    • June 18 – 22 (grades 9-11 / capacity 20 students) and June 25 – 29 (grades 6-8 / capacity 15 students)
    • Digital photography combines the art, technology and the great outdoors. Students will capture images on explorations throughout the Keweenaw Peninsula, which offers beautiful shorelines, waterfalls and abandoned mine structures. They will also learn about exposure, composition and visualization and refine your images with software. Instructors should have photography and editing experience for this course.
  • Rocketry and Space Science (June 18 – 22 and June 25 – 29)
    • Instructors Needed: 1 – TAs: 1
    • June 18 – 22 (grades 6-8 / capacity 15 students) and June 25 – 29 (grades 9-11 / capacity 15 students)
    • Students in this course will learn about aerodynamics and propulsion while building their own rockets. During the week, they use software to explore design elements, build a homemade rocket, explore concepts in physics and engineering, and learn about careers in space science. The week culminates with the students launching rockets at the Gay Stamp Sands. The instructor should be comfortable working with middle and high school students, have experience in rocketry/space science, and have confidence explaining STEM topics to a wide variety of learners.
  • Aquatic Ecology Field Study at Gratiot Lake 
    • Instructors Needed: 1 – TAs: 1
    • June 25 – 29 (grades 9-11 / capacity 8 students)
    • Students will spend a week out at the rustic Noblet Field Station on Gratiot Lake. During the week, they will explore ecological topics as they relate to lakes, rivers, wetlands and streams. Aquatic plants, insects, mammals, birds, fishes and many other topics are welcome—past activities have included extensive canoeing, water quality testing, learning about beaver dams, plant identification, and much more. Instructors should be comfortable with rustic cabin accommodations and have experience in some aspects of aquatic ecology. Instructor or TA should be, or be willing to become, First Aid/CPR certified.
  • Wildlife Ecology (July 9 – 13)
    • Instructors Needed: 1 – TAs Needed: 1
    • July 9 – 13 (grades 6-8 / capacity 12 students)
    • The U.P. has many striking habitats that support a wide variety of plant and animal species. Students will get a close look at the importance of protecting and conserving our natural resources for the sake of the living things that rely on them while exploring the diverse and beautiful environments and habitats of the Keweenaw Peninsula. Their observational skills will be challenged as they search for animal tracks, signs, scents, sounds and other indicators of quality habitats. Track animals using telemetry with a map and compass. Identify and make plaster castings of animal tracks and learn how to set noninvasive hidden camera and hair traps. Instructors should have a familiarity with the area and these topics.
  • PAAMEE: Preparing African American Males for Energy and Education(July 16 – 20 and July 23 – 27)
    • Instructors Needed: 3 – TA’s Needed: 3
    • July 16 – 20 (grades 10-11 / three sections each capped at 20 students) and July 23 – 27 (grades 10-11 / three sections each capped at 20 students)
    • A National Science Foundation sponsored project, 120 students from the Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program (DAPCEP) will participate in a multi-week program centered on the engineering and science of renewable energy (specifically wind and solar). The program is designed to attract and retain these students and their participation in science and engineering fields. The students will begin the summer spending a week at Michigan State University in June, then attend Michigan Tech SYP in July. Additional project partners include Lawrence Tech, Oakland University, Walker-Miller, Consumers Energy and Marathon Oil. Instructors should be comfortable working with high school students, have experience delivering renewable energy science curriculum and have confidence explaining STEM topics to a wide variety of learners.

SYP invites interested applicants to contact us via

2018 Washington DC Trip – Dates & RSVP

The Research Development team is continuing its planning for the 2018 visit to federal agencies in Washington DC. While some parts of the schedule are still being confirmed, we are ready to begin to gather information from interested participants. If you may be interested in attending the DC trip in 2018, please fill in this short form. The trip is open to all faculty, post-docs, and research staff. 
As in prior years, there is likely to be some internal cost sharing. Cost sharing is typically focused on early-career faculty; others will likely have to provide their own funds for some or all of the travel expenses. Exact levels of support will depend on college, appointment, career stage, and participation in prior trips. Even if you aren’t sure if you will be able to attend the trip, please fill in the form so we can continue communication as your plans develop.
The trip will be held the week of May 14. May 15 will be spent engaging with the National Science Foundation in small groups, and May 16 will involve interaction with multiple agencies. All interested people should plan to attend at least both of these days. Based on the interests of participants, additional agency visits may be scheduled for May 15 or 17.
Again, this is simply a non-binding initial interest survey. Additional information and more detailed schedule information will be sent to participants as planning continues.
Pete Larsen & the research development team
Direct link to interest form:

Seminar on Jan 30: Fundamentals of Analytical Electron Microscopy Techniques



Date: January 30, 2018

Place: M&M Bulding, Room 610

Time: 11:00 am – 12:00 pm

Dr. Pinaki Mukherjee

Engineer/Scientist, ACMAL

Department of Materials Science and Engineering

Michigan Technological University

The role of electron microscopy in solving materials problems has increased multifold in last few decades due to advances in electron optics, electronics, and computing technologies. From an analytical electron microscope we get wealth of information about the sample— such as morphology, crystal structure, composition, and oxidation state. Going a step further the microscopy community is trying to get information at real time using in-situ and in-operando measurements. In this talk the presenter will describe some of the imaging and spectroscopy techniques, such as— high resolution TEM (HRTEM), high angle annular dark field imaging in scanning TEM mode (HAADF-STEM), energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS), and electron energy loss spectroscopy (EELS). The focus of the talk will be on capabilities of the new FEI Titan Themis at Michigan Tech.

The presentation will be delivered by Dr. Pinaki Mukherjee, who has joined Michigan Tech in January 2018. He obtained his PhD in Materials Engineering from University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2013. He worked as a post-doctorate researcher at Rutgers University, The State University of New Jersey.  He was an affiliate of National Center for Electron Microscopy, at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

DOD Releases Funding Announcement for New Manufacturing Engineering Education Program (MEEP)

— The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2017 established the “Manufacturing Engineering Education Program,” (MEEP) (10 U.S.C. § 2196) which authorizes the Department of Defense to support industry-relevant, manufacturing-focused, engineering training at United States institutions of higher education, industry, nonprofit institutions, and consortia of such institutions or industry. DOD will administer this new program through the Office of Naval Research (ONR).  The purpose of this program is to establish new or to enhance existing programs (or collections of programs) to better position the current and next-generation manufacturing workforce to produce military systems and components that assure technological superiority for DOD. Interested parties should focus programs on manufacturing education to support one or more distinct manufacturing technologies; e.g. manufacturing of lightweight structures, systems and materials; robotics for manufacturing; manufacturing to exploit nanotechnology; manufacturing of components and systems for power generation, storage, or distribution; manufacturing of multi-functional electronics and/or optical devices; or other manufacturing technologies of regional or industrial sector of interest. Proposed efforts should develop and enhance curricula and programs to effectively develop skills sets needed for students to operate in multidisciplinary design and manufacturing environments, including those for which manufacturing schema are informed by computational tools for modeling and simulation. Students also should be prepared to work effectively in environments where multiple engineering disciplines are engaged during design, development and manufacturing, and where the roles of manufacturers and suppliers in businesses of various sizes, from start-ups to major systems integrators, are optimized.ONR intends to award approximately three (3) awards for an estimated total value of $5,400,000, subject to the availability of funds.  Each individual award will be up to a maximum of $600,000 per year for up to three (3) years. See attached funding opportunity announcement.