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NC State Partners with Sandia National Laboratories

NC State University is partnering with science and engineering research lab Sandia National Laboratories to increase innovative collaboration between academia and industry, based on a memorandum of understanding signed in April. The agreement is part of the Sandia University Partnerships Network, comprising 27 schools, from which Sandia will recruit top talent while providing support for research and innovation on campus.

With locations in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Livermore, Calif., Sandia is a Department of Energy National Nuclear Security Administration laboratory. Its missions include nuclear deterrence, energy, homeland and global security, and the fostering of science and engineering education.

Through the partnership, Sandia researchers and members of the NC State community will have the opportunity to collaborate on projects relating to topics like cybersecurity, data science and analytics, materials science, microsystems, hypersonics, nuclear technologies, energy, and more.

“Working with national laboratories like Sandia provides a terrific opportunity for our faculty and students to engage in complex, interdisciplinary research that helps solve nationally important problems,” says Dr. Alyson Wilson, associate vice chancellor for national security and special research initiatives at NC State. She is also principal investigator for the university’s Laboratory for Analytic Sciences and a statistics professor.

These opportunities could range from student internships and summer research projects for faculty in Sandia facilities to adjunct teaching positions at NC State for Sandia employees.

“With our ‘think and do’ mindset at NC State, these collaborations provide a way for our students to see their research applied to important mission problems,” Wilson says. “NC State can also be a great workforce pipeline for Sandia.”

Schools in the Sandia network were selected based on academic ranking, strategic research areas, pipeline diversity, Sandia attraction and retention, and geographic diversity. NC State will receive approximately $300,000 of seed funding through dedicated Laboratory Directed Research and Development funds to develop collaborative research that should grow into longer-term funded partnerships.

The use of these funds will be guided by the partnership’s campus executive for NC State, Dr. Basil Hassan. Hassan, a graduate of NC State, is the deputy chief research officer and director of the Chief Research Office at Sandia. He leads the lab’s research strategy development and oversees the external partnership and technology transfer programs.

“Various faculty members from NC State have worked collaboratively with researchers from Sandia for many years, and I am excited to see this growing partnership with the university come to fruition,” says Hassan, who earned his Ph.D. in aerospace engineering from NC State. “We look forward to doing great things together.”

Guest post by Katherine Kershaw

This post was originally published in Office of Research and Innovation.

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