Originally hailing from Idaho Falls, Idaho, Megan Casper grew up with nuclear research in her backyard. Fascinated by the exciting work taking place in her hometown, Megan chose to study international affairs and energy policy as a student at the George Washington University in Washington, DC. She recognized that the “nuclear industry needs translators—approachable, but well-informed mouthpieces—to bring about a change in attitude at both the grass roots and national levels.” This mission to deconstruct the complexities of nuclear and make the science accessible to the public is what led her to become a 2016 Innovator.
Megan is now the Program Manager for the Energy Communities Alliance (ECA), a DC-based organization that represents communities adjacent to national laboratories and other U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) facilities. In this role she works to connect local elected officials with DOE leadership and policymakers.
“Working at ECA has reinforced an important lesson I learned at Bootcamp: challenges to nuclear innovation aren’t exclusively scientific. Advances in nuclear face political and regulatory hurdles as they move from the drawing board to the marketplace.
Still, these challenges only amplify the urgency felt by DOE headquarters and communities across the country to engage young people from all disciplines in the problem-solving process. If we’re going to realize the promises of nuclear, it’s going to take all of us, innovating at all stages of the nuclear fuel cycle, and advocating at all levels of government.”
The Nuclear Innovation Bootcamp is effective because it brings together a group of diverse students with wide-ranging educational backgrounds. That’s why we strongly encourage students and professionals in law, business, economics, policy, journalism, and other relevant fields to apply. Of course, if you’re an engineer, you should get an application in too!