Los Alamos National Laboratory

Los Alamos National Laboratory

Delivering science and technology to protect our nation and promote world stability

African American Partnership Program

Graduate career research experiences for African American students in STEM disciplines


  • Tommy Rockward
  • Michelle B. Lee
    Providing graduate internships, creating a diverse pipeline of STEM expertise

    2017 Call for Applications

    Graduate internships begin Spring 2017

    Los Alamos National Laboratory is pleased to issue this call for African American Partnership Program (AAPP) Graduate Internships.

    The Laboratory invites African American graduate students to join its workforce and apply their STEM talents to solving problems of national interest.

    See more general info about the AAPP program, below.

    Start here: how to apply (pdf)

    Who Can Apply?

    African American students who are currently pursuing graduate studies in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) fields at U.S colleges or universities may apply. Successful applicants must be currently enrolled in a graduate degree program in a STEM field. Successful applicants must be U.S. citizens, have at least a cumulative 3.2 GPA, and complete a pre-employment drug test.

    Application Requirements

    Deadline: Completed applications must be sent to aapp@lanl.gov on or before March 24, 2017.

    Applicants must submit the following items:

    • Cover letter describing the work to be performed at LANL and identifying the LANL principal investigator (PI) who will serve as a mentor
    • Current Curriculum Vitae
    • University transcript (unofficial is acceptable)
    • Letter of recommendation
    • Letter of support from a LANL staff member who will serve as mentor (see below)
    • Faculty member description of research interest and commitment to collaborate with LANL in this area, should the student application be accepted by the Lab

    Address the following questions in your cover letter:

    1. Why are you interested in this program?
    2. How would you benefit from this program?
    3. What are your career goals and how does this program relate to them?

    LANL offers an excellent payment package for each participant based on their level of experience. While employed and station at the Laboratory, your compensation will be based on an annual rate ranging from $48,360 to $63,440 per year, consistent with our market-based compensation program. Housing is not included in the payment package. Travel costs for pre-approved trips to and from LANL will be reimbursed.

    Technical Areas

    All areas of STEM focused research will be considered. A partnering LANL staff member must be identified to serve as a mentor. Alignment between work currently being performed at the applicant’s institution and that of the partnering LANL staff member will be looked upon favorably. To view research areas, visit LANL website at http://www.lanl.gov/science-innovation/index.php.

    Establishing a University/LANL PI Partnership

    LANL’s interest in developing a collaborative relationship with the student’s educational institution is a fundamental part of the Program. We encourage students and faculty mentors to visit http://www.lanl.gov/science-innovation/index.php to review research interests. If a research interest is not found, faculty members in coordination with students are encouraged to submit recommendations and, if known, identify potential LANL collaborators. LANL program coordinators will attempt to match university and LANL PI research interests.

    Important Internship Details
    • Award Announcements: Internship awards will be announced by April 21, 2017.
    • Start Date: Internships can begin anytime between May and June of 2017.
    • Duration: Successful internships are expected to last approximately one year. Within that year, students are expected to spend at least 6 months at LANL in not more than two continuous blocks, and the remaining time at their institution completing work related to the research interest. At the end of the internship, candidates may be considered for a continuation of funding based on past achievements and stated future goals.
    • Off-Site Work: LANL may arrange work off-site for students at their institution up to five months to continue their research collaboration with continued compensation. This arrangement shall be consistent with the requirement of LANL’s Off-site Student Policy.

    Questions? Email the AAPP office at aapp@lanl.gov.

    About AAPP at Los Alamos

    The Laboratory’s African American Partnership Program provides outstanding African American graduate students in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) disciplines at U.S. colleges or universities with opportunities to apply their talents through an internship at the Laboratory.

    AAPP focuses on developing and sustaining long-term relationships between the Lab, students and their universities, while assisting students toward completion of their graduate degrees and furthering research interests. AAPP allows the participating students to apply their STEM talents to solving problems of national interest.

    The program was implemented at Los Alamos in 2014 as part of the DOE/NNSA Minority Serving Institution Partnership Program, which creates consortia between national laboratories and historically black colleges and universities to develop research activities and build a diverse pipeline of STEM expertise at the Laboratory.

    Our AAPP internships

    AAPP internships run for at least one year, during which students spend at least six months at the Laboratory and the remaining time at their institution continuing their research. Students receive in-depth and committed mentoring from experienced Laboratory principal investigators.

    In 2016, the Laboratory implemented its second call for AAPP internships. Currently, five African American PhD students from five different universities are working with the Laboratory.

    2016 LANL AAPP Graduate Interns
    Nicholas Brown Enrique Martinez, MST-8 Northwestern University PhD Civil Engineering-Material Mechanics and Interactions
    Kailyn Cage Dusan Spernjak, AET-1 University of Maryland PhD Reliability/Mechanical Engineering
    Lawrence Fomundam Charles Farrar, NSEC
    (Lab Fellow) and Dan Rees, AOT-RFE
    University of Florida PhD Electrical and Computer Engineering
    Addis Fuhr Victor Klimov, C-PCS
    (Lab Fellow)
    University of California, Los Angeles PhD Chemical Engineering
    Jonathan Reynolds (2nd year) Cortney Kreller, MPA-11 Tennessee State University PhD Computer and Information Systems Engineering

    In addition, the AAPP sponsored five top minority summer students, including two graduate students, from five different universities in 2015.

    The success of these programs is attributed to dedicated Los Alamos mentors, student internships, research collaborations, leadership support, and training. Come join our team!

    AAPP intern Lawrence Fomundam and his Lab mentors Dan Rees and Charles Farrar

    AAPP intern Lawrence Fomundam, center, an engineering graduate student at the University of Florida, is working on wireless power transmission for biomedical implants at Los Alamos. He is shown here with his Lab mentors Dan Rees, left, and Laboratory Fellow Charles Farrar.

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