News Release

Release Date: February 26, 2016

"My Brother’s Keeper" Week at Energy Dept National Labs Brings STEM Opportunities to Students


WASHINGTON, DC  On Friday, February 26, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) will kick off My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) Week at nine of DOE’s cutting edge national science laboratories. President Obama launched the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative in February 2014, to address persistent opportunity gaps faced by boys and young men of color and ensure that all young people can reach their full potential.  Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz joined the MBK Taskforce in March 2015. A key goal of MBK is to connect young people to mentoring and support networks and to instill a passion for science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) careers.

DOE’s MBK Lab Day programs will include dynamic talks and hands-on activities that will range from cryogenics experiments, to simulating particle collisions, to giving a tour of a 3D-printed house. The programs are designed to instill a passion for STEM, entrepreneurship, and innovation through active learning and genuine STEM experiences. DOE hopes to reach over 850 students across the country through this initiative.

Eight federal agencies including NASA, the Department of Defense and the National Institutes of Health will participate in National MBK Lab Day.  MBK Lab Day activities also support the goals of the Department of Energy’s Minorities in Energy Initiative.

DOE’s laboratory MBK dates, locations, activities and media contacts:

Friday, February 26

Idaho National Laboratory, Idaho Falls, ID: Participants will learn more about nuclear forensic chemistry, nuclear engineering and cybersecurity and tour the Bus Simulator, CAVE, Human Factors Systems Laboratory and Biomass Feedstock User Facility. Idaho Falls Mayor Rebecca Casper will wrap up the afternoon.

Media contacts:

Lori McNamara, 208-520-6066,; Laura Scheele, 219-381-8672,

Monday, February 29

Los Alamos National Lab, Los Alamos, NM: Activities will include the demonstration of a Sim Table used to prepare for and fight wildland fires using computer simulation programs and an exploration of properties of liquid nitrogen and the way materials behave at cold temperatures.

Media contact:

Steve Sandoval, 505-665-9206,

Tuesday, March 1

Sandia National Laboratories, Albuquerque, NM: Activities will include a day of hands-on activities and laboratory tours. 

Media contact:

Valarie Larkin, 505-284-7879,

Wednesday, March 2

Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Knoxville, TN: Staff will offer “Speed mentoring” with representatives from a variety of fields across the lab, representing both the science and technology as well as operational support systems. Participants will tour the Additive Manufacturing Integrated Energy (AMIE) Demonstration Project (3D printed house) and visit DOE’s American Museum of Science and Energy which includes new exhibits focused on the Spallation Neutron Source as well as Tiny Titan, a hands-on demonstration of parallel computing that uses an Xbox controller.

Media contact:

Morgan McCorkle, 865-574-7308,

Brookhaven National Laboratory, Upton, NY: A panel of BNL leaders will address MBK participants. Tours of the facilities and hands-on activities highlighting BNL's current research initiatives and world-class facilities will also be available. Lab staff will simulate particle collisions at the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider and allow boys and young men of color to explore opportunities in nanoscience and its potential applications in energy production and conservation.

Media contact:

Pete Genzer, 631-344-3174,,

National Energy Technology Laboratory, Pittsburgh, PA: Activities will include: Tours of four research labs; a look into Geo Forensics – natural materials, what they are and why they are important; a tour of the Analytical Laboratory – the use of high end analytical equipment to better understand ingredients in everyday items; A Closer Look into Everyday Things – using advanced microscopes to take a closer look at everyday items we encounter and an exploration of the importance of Fossil Energy –  a closer look at where our power truly comes from and the opportunity we all have to make it better.

Media contact:

Dave Anna, 412-386-4646, 412-337-8553,

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, CA: Interactive activities and an entertaining “Fun With Science” presentation where students will learn about chemistry, electricity, air pressure and the states of matter; meet lab scientists and engineers who will answer questions on educational pathways and careers in STEM;  hands-on workshops, demonstrations – Lego Robots, Spaghetti Tower; Engineering and Computer Science Family Feud; and giveaways geared to engage interest and excite students toward opportunities in STEM.

Media contact:

Carrie Martin, 925-424-4175,

Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, Newport News, VA: Introduce an engineering activity, “Go Far Cars.” Volunteer role models will work with the students as they complete the lab, and talk about their careers and job opportunities.

Media contact:

Debbie Magaldi, 757-269-5102,

Friday, March 4

Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory, Princeton, NJ: Cryogenics experiments/demos, interactive plasma demos, lab and experiments tours.

Media contact:

Larry Bernard, 609-243-2755,