Two NUEN students participate in the Nuclear Engineering Student Delegation held at the Capitol

Two nuclear engineering graduate students, Lane Carasik and Taylor Lane, spent a week in the nation’s capitol informing policy makers on nuclear science and engineering as part of the 2014 Nuclear Engineering Student Delegation (NESD). NESD is a student-led organization that gathers the country’s brightest nuclear science and technology students from across the nation. During the first three days the delegation met with representatives from: the American Nuclear Society, AREVA, Bechtel, Department of Energy, Environmental Protection Agency, Idaho National Laboratory, Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. In addition, the delegation “stormed the Hill” on Thursday and Friday, and met with the offices of most senators and over one hundred house representatives for a total of over 150 offices!

The delegation’s policy statement, which can be found here, focused on continuing to fund the Integrated University Program (IUP), opposing STEM consolidation, licensing support for Small Modular Reactors (SMRs), reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank, more flexibility in future 123 Agreements, and a coherent nuclear waste plan. 

Carasik, Lane, FloresCarasik (photo right) and Lane (photo left) had a very constructive meeting with Rep. Bill Flores (photo center), whose district includes Texas A&M University. Flores was very excited to meet the students and voiced his whole-hearted support for their objectives. Flores was knowledgeable about nuclear issues and was familiar with the nuclear facilities housed at Texas A&M. He has toured the Nuclear Science Center and AGN reactor in the past. Secondly, prior to redistricting, his district included the Comanche Peak Nuclear Power Plant which he has toured previously. 

Lane Carasik, a Ph.D. student studying thermal hydraulics under Dr. Yassin Hassan, department head, was a co-vice chair for the delegation. He is currently spending his summer abroad as a visiting researcher at Imperial College London in the United Kingdom.

Taylor Lane, a master's student studying radiation-hydrodynamics under Dr. Ryan McClarren, was a first-year delegate and is on a summer internship at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, NM.