Category Archives: Collaborations/Interdisciplinary Opportunities

Encourage your students to apply for the DEBUT Challenge!

The National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) and VentureWell hold the Design by Biomedical Undergraduate Teams (DEBUT) challenge which recognizes undergraduate excellence in biomedical innovation. DEBUT is open to undergraduate student teams working on innovative solutions to health and clinical problems.

Strong DEBUT submissions will demonstrate a mastery of analytical and design skills and capabilities, the ability to manage the product development process, work effectively in teams, and technical communication skills.

Submissions will be judged on the following criteria:

  • Significance of the problem being addressed
  • Impact of the proposed solution on potential users and clinical care
  • Innovative design
  • Working prototype

Additional prizes will be awarded to entries that also demonstrate:

  • Market potential and economic feasibility
  • Patentability

Read more about the guidelines and the 2017 DEBUT winners.

Encourage your students to apply today! Total prizes of $65K will be awarded. Applications are due Wednesday, May 31.

    Learn More    

AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellowships

The annual faculty trip to Washington DC was this week.  In addition to visiting NSF, Federal Science Partners, and NIH, we were able to visit AAAS (American Association for the Advancement of Science) offices.   We met Dr. Jennifer Pearl who is the Director of the Science & Technology Policy Fellowships program.   I’d highly recommend that you consider applying for one of these for your next sabbatical and/or encourage your PhD grads & postdocs to apply.  Assignments are made across the Executive, Judicial, and Legislative branches of government. A common assignment for faculty is in NSF, NIH, NIST, DoE, DoD, etc. in positions providing perspective reports, new funding initiatives, and related.

Applications are due in Nov for assignments beginning 9-10 months later (Sept).

Details at

This is definitely a pay it forward type of activity!

Come to the annual Lake Superior Celebration and Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative 10-Year Celebration ~ 6-8 pm, Thursday, May 10th at Michigan Tech’s Great Lakes Research Center

**Due to the power outage at the GLRC on Thursday, May 10, we have had to relocate the Lake Superior Celebration to the Forestry Atrium at MTU**

The community is invited to the Lake Superior Celebration at Michigan Tech’s Great Lakes Research Center (GLRC) from 6-8 pm, Thursday, May 10. The event is FREE, family-friendly, and open to all.  The Lake Superior Celebration will include informative displays by local agencies and organizations. There will be hands-on activities for youth, displays and presentations.

Hands On Activities for Students in 104 GLRC include:

6:15 pm   Leave No Trace Recreation  w/ Copper Harbor Trails Club (Nathan Miller)

6:45 pm   Make Your Own Packaging (small paper boxes)

7:15 pm   Make Heart Healthy Fruit Smoothies & Plant Spring Flowers.
More than a dozen community organizations and businesses will have displays:

  • Walking Paths & Protected Areas of the Keweenaw
  • How the Rock Connects Us – Book signing with Professor Emeritus Bill Rose
  • Calumet Farmers’ Market
  • G & A Farmers Market & Garden Center
  • MORE!

MTU Sustainability House by resident Hannah Reish
Student Presentations – EB Holman Students, Dollar Bay HS Student Organization of Aquatic Robotics


World Water Day art exhibit
Lake Superior Soundscapes
Live Music: A Handful of Humans instrumental & song!

Refreshments: cake, lemonade & coffee provided.

The event is sponsored by the Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative, Western U.P. Center for Science, Mathematics and Environmental Education, Michigan Tech Center for Science & Environmental Outreach, and the Great Lake Research Center. For more information: contact:  Shawn Oppliger at 482-0331 or at the Copper Country ISD or Joan Chadde 906-487-3341 and  at Michigan Tech.

Visit the Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative on the web or on Facebook.

Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative (LSSI)

Bringing schools & communities together in the stewardship of Lake Superior and its watershed.

All Invited!  Free! 

Sponsored by Lake Superior Stewardship Initiative, Western U.P. Center for Science, Mathematics and Environmental Education, Michigan Tech Center for Science & Environmental Outreach, Michigan Tech Great Lakes Research Center

Funded in part with a grant from the Great Lakes Stewardship Initiative.

Bringing Efficiency to Research Grants (BETR Grants) Information

This is information that can aid with developing research grant proposals.
Bringing Efficiency to Research Grants (BETR Grants) is an organization has been talking with funding agencies on how to incorporate information on sustainable laboratory practices and shared lab facilities into grant proposals.
There are suggestions of how to incorporate factors like equipment sharing, space utilization, energy and water conservation, and lab assessment into proposals.
Please pass this along to those who may be interested.

Review of Foreign National Restrictions on Awards” Education Session

The Vice President for Research Office will host an educational session, “Review of Foreign National Restrictions on Awards” from noon to 1:30 p.m., Wednesday, May 9th.  The session will be in the Memorial Union Alumni Lounge. Registration is open and ends on May 8.

This session will help faculty and staff understand and address foreign national restrictions considerations when conducting research.  Topics covered will include: managing technical data, intellectual property and proprietary materials; defining and working with foreign nationals, publishing and teaching; and exporting and licensing considerations.

Register now to reserve a seat!

This workshop is sponsored by the Office of the Vice President for Research. There will be desserts and beverages provided, please bring your own lunch.

If you have questions, please contact Ramona Englund at 487-2654 or

DARPA Funding Opportunity for Computers and Humans Exploring Software Security(CHESS)

 Summary provided by Federal Science Partners
— DARPA is soliciting research proposals to develop techniques and systems that will substantially accelerate software vulnerability research (VR). The goal of the CHESS program is to develop computer-human systems to rapidly discover all classes of vulnerability in complex software. These novel approaches for the rapid detection of vulnerabilities will focus on identification of system information gaps that require human assistance, generation of representations of these gaps appropriate for human collaborators, capture and integration of human insights into the analysis process, and the synthesis of software patches based on this
collaborative analysis.  Proposed research should investigate innovative approaches that enable revolutionary advances in science, devices, or systems. Specifically excluded is research that primarily results in evolutionary improvements to the existing state of practice.  More information can be found here.

NSF FAQ on Planning Grants for new Engineering Research Centers

Summary provided by Federal Science Partners

– NSF has issued a series of Frequently Asked Questions regarding the process for applying for planning grants for new Engineering Research Centers.  The FAQ can be viewed here.  The Planning Grants for ERC solicitation is a mechanism for increasing capacity across the engineering academic community to develop ideas, facilitate team formation, and foster stakeholder community networks. As a result of planning grant activities, potential ERC teams should be better equipped to carry out center-scale convergent engineering research with large societal impact.  The next solicitation for new ERC’s is expected to be released during calendar year 2018.  There are no priority areas established for the planning grants. However, the ERC program is placing greater emphasis on research that leads to societal impact, including convergent approaches, engaging stakeholder communities, and strengthening team formation, in response to the NASEM study recommendations. The planning grant initiative is designed to foster and facilitate the engineering community’s thinking about how to form convergent research collaborations.

NSF Issues Dear Colleague Letter on Rules of Life

Summary by Federal Science Partners

– NSF seeks proposals that jump-start the de novo design of complex, synthetic biological components and cells. The DCL intends to engage scientists and engineers in the application of Design-Build-Test-Learn and experiment-modeling cycles to create synthetic cells. It is anticipated that the research will lead to new rules relevant for cell metabolism, epigenetics, interaction networks, and organelle function; molecular components and organelles of cells; and strategies for the design and synthesis of cells.  This DCL describes an initial effort to expand and test current understanding through the design of synthetic cell components (ribosomes, mitochondria, membranes, regulators, molecular machines, etc.) and molecular probes, and their synthesis and integration into “pseudo-cells” that efficiently convert raw materials to useful products. This effort reinforces the high priority placed by the Directorate for Engineering on advanced biomanufacturing and by the Directorate for Mathematics and Physical Sciences on understanding the fundamental science that underlies life processes, and it complements the NSF Ten Big Ideas of Understanding the Rules of Life and Growing Convergent Research. The NSF Divisions of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental and Transport Systems (CBET), Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation (CMMI) in the Directorate of Engineering (ENG), and Chemistry (CHE) and Materials Research (DMR) in the Directorate of Mathematical and Physical Sciences (MPS) seek to support activities that include Conferences, EArly-Concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER), and Research Advanced by Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering (RAISE) grants.

ORAU Fellowship and Other opportunities

The ORAU University Partnerships Office is pleased to provide the following information, available to all institutions.  Please forward within your institution and broadly to colleagues as you feel appropriate.

Immediate Fellowship Opportunities in the HHS/OASH Chief Medical OfficeReminder

Two fellowship opportunities are currently available in the Office of the Chief Medical Officer, within the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) in Washington, DC.  The Chief Medical Officer serves as the primary medical advisor to the Assistant Secretary for Health on the development and implementation of HHS-wide public health policy recommendations.  The fellow may have the opportunity to be involved in the following activities:

  • Assisting the Mentor (project lead) who provides leadership for planning, developing, and implementing extremely complex, national-level public health projects.
  • Conducting background searches for project team objectives.
  • Tracking public health data to be utilized in opioid initiatives.
  • Analyzing quantitative and qualitative data.
  • Developing written products and oral presentation materials for a variety of initiatives related to opioids, pain, behavioral health, and the social sciences.

To apply visit

Immediate 2018 ORISE Fellowship Opportunity at DHHSNEW!

The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) in Washington, DC is accepting applications for an ORISE Fellowship.  The candidate will be mentored by the Senior Leadership in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health and be involved alongside the Assistant Secretary for Health directly.  The candidate will assist the Mentor (project lead) who provides leadership for planning, developing, and implementing extremely complex, national-level public health programs in collaboration with local, state, other federal and/or international governments, various public, non-profit, private and health-related organizations. The candidate will provide support for establishing systematic methods for program execution and advocacy that include identification of objectives, evaluation criteria, and legal and regulatory compliance requirements.


Savannah River National Lab – Postdoc Opening – Data ScienceNEW!

The National Security Directorate at Savannah River National Laboratory (SRNL) seeks highly qualified candidates for a Postdoctoral Research Associate position in the field of data science, with particular interest in network identification and data visualization.  They are especially interested in enthusiastic candidates that can demonstrate significant experience with a wide range of data science applications.  Their Postdoctoral Research Associates have initial one-year appointments, with an option to renew for up to three years, depending on project needs and the continued availability of funding.  The salary and benefits are competitive.  They encourage publication of non-classified results of research efforts, and appreciate candidates that can demonstrate their scientific productivity through peer-reviewed publications and novel research approaches to complex problems.  Successful candidates will have relevant data science experience, critical thinking skills, data processing skills, and a demonstrated ability to synthesize these skills into effective experimental design, execution, and reporting.  For more information and to apply go to

ORNL Neutron Scattering Post-Master’s Research AssociateReminder

The Neutron Scattering Division (NSD) invites applications for a M.S. biochemist/molecular biologist to join the Large Scale Structures Group at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL).  The Neutron Sciences Directorate (NScD) at ORNL operates the High Flux Isotope Reactor (HFIR), the United States’ highest flux reactor based neutron source, and the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS), the world’s most intense pulsed accelerator based neutron source. Together these facilities operate 24 instruments for neutron scattering research, each year carrying out 1000 experiments in the physical, chemical, materials, biological and medical sciences for 2000 visiting scientists. HFIR also provides unique facilities for isotope production and neutron irradiation. To learn more about Neutron Sciences at ORNL go to:

2018 DOE Cyber ConferenceNEW!

The Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of the Chief Information Officer will host the 2018 DOE Cyber Conference on June 4-7, 2018 in Austin, Texas at the Renaissance Austin hotel. The Conference is designed to bring together the DOE enterprise, the federal interagency, academia, international partners, and private industry to advance cyber and IT modernization efforts across DOE’s diverse and shared missions.

The Conference will be an interactive forum for communication, collaboration, and training, as well as a platform for sharing information and best practices to support the Department’s energy, science, nuclear, and national security missions. The agenda will consist of plenary sessions to highlight the latest developments and innovations, breakout sessions to foster new cooperation and partnerships, and practical training exercises to enhance the capabilities of the information technology and cyber workforce.  The deadline to register is May 11, 2018. For more information, please visit

The 19th Annual ORISE/ORNL Graduate Student Recruitment FairReminder

The 19th ORISE and ORNL graduate student recruitment fair will take place this August! Last year we had close to 500 of the nation’s top undergraduates in our research participant programs at ORNL, and we predict that number will grow this year. With undergraduates in a wide variety of fields ranging from physical sciences to engineering, you are sure to find a perfect fit for your institution’s graduate programs.

The fair is held in conjunction with the conclusion of the ORNL summer undergraduate student programs to capitalize on this brimming talent pool. Over 200 students from across the country will present posters of their research at ORNL during an all-day session on Thursday, August 9, 2018. The Recruitment Fair will run the entire day from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, so students may come to all university tables during the day.

We do hope you will attend or have others represent your institution to take advantage of this outstanding opportunity to attract top-flight students to your institution’s graduate programs.


The registration deadline is Thursday, July 26. There will be a limit of one table/four people per institution. Table location will be assigned upon arrival. Register each attendee at to reserve a table and receive ORNL badge access. Only those who register will receive badge access.

Be aware that increased security concerns require that you have early approval to access the Laboratory. US Citizens must apply by July 26. Non-citizens, including legal permanent residents, must apply by June 14. Representatives will be limited to Building 5200, ORNL Visitor Center and will not be permitted to go to any other buildings on campus. If you will be meeting with any ORNL staff, they will need to meet with you in the Visitor Center, where there are plenty of tables and chairs available.

For additional information, you may contact Emily Isaacs at The ORISE phone number is 865-576-1234.


University Partnerships Office