Education Program

The CASL Education Program goes beyond the traditional educational experience of involving graduate students in research. While graduate education is an integral component of CASL’s mission, the goal of the CASL Education Program is to ensure that CASL results and technology are integrated into undergraduate and graduate curricula and subsequently transferred to industry users. The CASL Education Program provides student summer workshops, webinars, summer internships, undergraduate research opportunities, supports the development of new courses at constituent Universities and the development of course modules which utilize CASL software.

Summer Workshop

Since the summer of 2011, the CASL Education Program has conducted student summer workshops at ORNL. The workshop is a two and a half day experience for both graduate and undergraduate students participating in CASL research. The agenda includes interaction with CASL faculty and staff, updates on the current state of research in CASL focus areas, tours of CASL headquarters and points of interest at ORNL, and poster sessions where students can present their research.


In February 2012, the CASL Education Program began conducting a webinar series using the University and Laboratory partner’s Huddle rooms. The goal of the webinars is to share the research and current state of CASL activities with CASL partners. Speakers have included both faculty and laboratory staff, and span the breadth of topics being pursued by CASL researchers. The webinars are being recorded and archived at ORNL, providing open access to CASL partners.

Undergraduate Research Opportunities

In an effort to recruit top students into graduate programs supporting CASL research, the Education Program supports Undergraduate research opportunities at its partner Universities. One such program is the Undergraduate Research Scholars program at North Carolina State University. Under the Scholars Program, undergraduate students are selected to work with CASL faculty as part of their research program. Each undergraduate receives cutting-edge research experience while working on real CASL problems.

Educational Resource Material

A major focus of the Education Program is the development of educational materials which can facilitate transfer of CASL generated research and technologies into the classroom and to industry. The Education Program has supported the development of new courses at CASL partner Universities in challenge areas including thermal-hydraulics, materials, radiation transport, uncertainty quantification, and computational science. Current efforts are focused on the development of course modules in fuel performance, core thermal-hydraulics and radiation transport that utilize software available under the VERA framework and can be transported to any of the CASL partner Universities.

A CASL School is planned for the Summer of 2015. This event will provide a two-week course in the methods and applications of CASL technologies and result in a CASL Certificate in Advanced Modeling and Simulation administered through the Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU).

Education Program Director

The CASL Education Program Director (EPD) is responsible for delivery of programs supporting the educational mission of CASL. The efforts of the EPD are supported by an Education Program Committee, consisting of representatives from each CASL founding partner university as well as industry partner institutions. Information regarding the CASL Education Program can be obtained by contacting:

CASL Education Program Director
Dr. J. Michael Doster
Professor of Nuclear Engineering
North Carolina State University

CASL Education Program Associate
Sherry Bailey
North Carolina State University


Communications Coordinator

The CASL Communications Coordinator (CC) is responsible for informing and educating the public, stakeholders, and decision-makers regarding the achievements and opportunities created by CASL. The CASL CC will work the CASL Extended Leadership Team (ELT) to inform stakeholders and other interested parties of status updates and activities regarding the CASL project; keep decision-makers updated on CASL technology and its future potential; identify and address emerging stakeholder issues related to the CASL project; promote the benefits and initiatives offered by CASL with decision-makers and stakeholders; foster interaction between CASL leadership and key policy makers; guide efforts at understanding and achieving technology transfer; and explore challenges to the growth of nuclear energy and the success of CASL.

The CC uses a Communications Committee in carrying out the CASL communication needs. The committee is composed of representatives of CASL founding partners and selected consultants. The role of the committee is to produce printed and online materials that educate and update key audiences and stakeholders and address issues that arise related to funding, safety, and mission.