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NNSA Begins Recruiting for Fall Military Program

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) today announced that it has begun its fall recruiting events for the 2012 Military Academic Collaborations (MAC) Program.

 “NNSA is excited about the continued nationwide interest in NNSA’s Military Academic Collaborations program,” said Brig. Gen. Sandra Finan, Principal Assistant Deputy Administrator for Military Application at NNSA. “The program offers a variety of activities that enhances collaboration between NNSA and the U.S. Military Academies and Reserve Officers Training Corp programs at other universities. The program is a tremendous opportunity for military academy cadets, midshipmen, ROTC students, and faculty to be part of the enterprise that maintains the nation’s nuclear stockpile while implementing President Obama’s nuclear security agenda.”

NNSA representatives of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia National Laboratories visited each of the military academies last month, providing information seminars to the students and staff at each of the institutions.

The MAC Program, which began as a summer program during FY 2010, placed military academy cadets and midshipmen in tours of duty within science, technology, engineering, national security and relevant fields at NNSA sites during summer 2011.

MAC participants engage in science and engineering activities that provide valuable hands-on experience while meeting project objectives. Participants have supported ultra-wideband radar maritime interdiction to implement preventative Radiological/Nuclear Detection (PRND) capability; performed research on nuclear-atomic coupling physics; examined optical phenomena and blindness caused by IEDs, and worked at the Big Explosive Experimental Facility (BEEF) in Nevada, which provides for outdoor explosive test and evaluation capabilities.
This past summer, NNSA hosted and trained 57 cadets and midshipmen throughout the enterprise. NNSA received positive responses from cadets/midshipmen who attended the program. “Nothing like I expected, it was real life not just theoretical,” said USAFA Cadet Dale Becker. “I was given a problem and had to come up with an elegant solution.”

The program also benefits NNSA sites by providing students with valuable insight. “As future leaders, we hope participants will move on to responsible positions and have an impact on future programs and funding,” said Barry Goldman, the Undergraduate and Graduate Internship manager at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.  

The MAC website features an overview of the program, requirements, contact information and an introductory recruitment video message from Gen. Sandra Finan.

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Established by Congress in 2000, NNSA is a semi-autonomous agency within the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science. NNSA maintains and enhances the safety, security, reliability and performance of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile without nuclear testing; works to reduce global danger from weapons of mass destruction; provides the U.S. Navy with safe and effective nuclear propulsion; and responds to nuclear and radiological emergencies in the U.S. and abroad.