Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Argonne National Laboratory

Yesterday morning, faculty and staff got an email from our new president, Robert Zimmer (more on him later) announcing that we have won our bid to continue to manage Argonne National Laboratory! Here is Bob's letter:

Re: Argonne contract

I am delighted to report that the U.S. Department of Energy announced today that the University's company, UChicago Argonne, LLC, has been selected to manage Argonne National Laboratory for a five-year period beginning October 1, 2006. The contract can be extended, based on performance, for up to twenty years without competition.

The University of Chicago has managed Argonne National Laboratory since 1946, when the Laboratory was established to build on work originally done at the University. Several years ago, Congress mandated that the Department of Energy put contracts for several national laboratories up for competitive bid, and the University has been involved for well over a year in the competition for the contract to manage Argonne. We are very pleased to be able to continue our management role.

The University is fully committed to the stewardship of the extraordinary national resource that Argonne represents. In recent years, the scientific partnership of the University and Argonne has deepened, contributing to both the strength of the Laboratory and to science and technology development at the University. We anticipate that this relationship will continue to strengthen and evolve productively in the years ahead. The award of this contract is a basic component of our capacity to contribute to the development of science and technology at the highest levels, and through it to enhancing the well-being of the nation.

The University will manage Argonne through a new entity, UChicago Argonne, LLC. The University is the sole member of the LLC, which will bring together the expertise and experience of the University of Chicago with Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc. and BWX Technologies, Inc., both high-quality industrial firms with proven experience in science and technology management. We also benefit greatly from our partnerships with Northwestern University and the University of Illinois, which are represented on both the Argonne Board of Governors and the Board's Science Policy Council.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank those at the University and Argonne who worked tirelessly to achieve this success, including Vice Presidents Thomas Rosenbaum, Hank Webber and Beth Harris, Argonne National Laboratory Director Robert Rosner, Argonne National Laboratory Deputy Director Don Joyce, and Assistant Vice President Diana Jergovic.

As members of the University of Chicago community, we can all be proud of this achievement. The University has a 60-year record of success in stewardship of Argonne, and I anticipate a future of lasting scientific and technical contributions for generations to come.

What does that mean for undergrads? Why, fully-funded internships, of course!