OSU students celebrate the past and set a new course

March 11, 2020, 2:51PMANS News

OSU Student Section Faculty Advisor Samuel Briggs accepted a certificate from ANS President Marilyn Kray (foreground). From left to right, section officers pictured are Matthew Hageman, Andrew Ritacco, Brandon Kamiyama, Taighlor Story, Lucia Gomez-Hurtado, Elizabeth Jurgensen, Maren Arneson, and Stephanie Juarez.

The ANS Oregon State University (OSU) Student Section hosted a 50th anniversary celebration on March 3 with ANS President Marilyn Kray as their guest.

“The officers did an amazing job and deserve all the credit for organizing a very successful 50th anniversary event,” said Samuel Briggs, an assistant professor in OSU’s School of Nuclear Science and Engineering (NSE) and the student section’s faculty advisor.

Following a dinner that featured a slideshow of historic OSU photos, students had a chance to pose questions to an expert panel. Kray took part in the panel together with NSE Emeritus Professor and ANS Past President Andrew Klein (2016–2017), NSE School Head and Professor Kathy Higley, and NSE Associate School Head and Professor Wade Marcum. They were asked about future obstacles and prospects for the nuclear industry, public outreach and advocacy, and nuclear engineering career development. “Local members asked some great questions of the panel—even I learned something!” Briggs said.

The OSU student section is commemorating its history while welcoming change. “The ANS OSU student section experienced a major leadership change this year,” said Section President Matthew Hageman. “Many of the upper division and graduate students who previously ran the club moved on, and the executive committee is made up entirely of undergraduates in their junior year or less.”

Those new leaders are setting fresh goals for the section. “Left with little direction and a new faculty advisor, the executive committee used the opportunity to define new goals for the club,” Hageman said. “In addition to our chapter’s annual events, we developed a plan to provide more events to increase the visibility and activity of the club.”

Section goals include increasing student involvement at ANS national meetings; creating a regular schedule of career development, social, and outreach events; and ensuring a smooth transition for future officers. “We’re excited to send 10 students to the ANS Student Conference this year and hope to increase our involvement on the national level over the next few years and send people to the Winter and Annual Meetings as well,” Hageman said. “We are very excited about the next few years and hope future officers will continue our efforts to continually improve our student section.”

During the current school year, student section members have volunteered for elementary school outreach “Discovery Days”; led reactor tours; presented research at the ANS OSU Winter Conference; and enjoyed activities including a fall barbecue, Chernobyl miniseries watch parties, and a trivia night fundraiser.

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