Education Programs

A little hands-on science as the Traveling Science Fair visited Knox County, Tennessee, Schools' Career Day.
A little hands-on science as the Traveling Science Fair visits Knox County, Tennessee, Schools' Career Day.

Traveling Science Fair

ORNL's Traveling Science Fair provides an opportunity for guests of all ages to learn more about science and the importance of the ORNL research directly from scientists as they tour in carnival-style, interactive trailers that describe various fields of research and areas of future career opportunities.

K-12 students and teachers

Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) outreach is vital to the nation’s development of future scientists, engineers and innovators.  As the U.S. Department of Energy’s largest multiprogram science and energy laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) is committed to serving the public as a valued partner in educational initiatives, promoting and expanding STEM experiences for the next generation. STEM Source – a collection of STEM resources focused on educational enhancement and workforce development – brings together informative content, hands-on activities and learning opportunities from around the laboratory, as well as the region. It draws on ORNL’s expertise and community partnerships to build student interest and engagement in STEM by explaining how STEM-related research impacts the everyday world. STEM Source is where science comes to life.


ORNL offers several programs for promising undergraduate students. Students interested in summer, fall, or spring internships can apply to various interdisciplinary and discipline based programs.  Programs include the Higher Education Research Experience (HERE), Nuclear Engineering Science Laboratory Synthesis (NSELS), Research Alliance for Math and Science (RAMS), Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship (SULI), Volkswagen Scholars,  and the Oak Ridge Science Semester, through ORAU  and the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE). In 2013, there were 426 undergraduates actively engaged in research and study, during the summer and throughout the academic year.

Recent Associate’s and Bachelor’s Graduates

Strengthen your scientific and technical knowledge while developing key career contacts at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Start your career with an ORNL recent graduate opportunity in the research or technical fields.

Graduate students

Enhance your expertise and collaborate with many of the nation’s leading science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) experts as you complete your research. Opportunities are available for current Master’s and Ph.D. students to participate as members of research teams at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

Recent Master's and Ph.D. graduates

These programs offer challenging research opportunities to recent recipients of Master’s and Doctoral degrees. Participants are matched with active research teams and conduct research in areas that support Oak Ridge National Laboratory missions.

Visiting faculty

ORNL offers a number of opportunities to visiting faculty to do hands-on research during the summer months. Faculty may be accompanied by up to two students. ORNL’s commitment to diversity in the science workforce encourages faculty from historically black colleges and minority educational institutions to apply. The Higher Education Research Experience (HERE) program allows visiting faculty to participate in research during the summer or on a semester basis.

Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Education Institutions

Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU) cosponsor summer research appointments for faculty of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and other Minority Educational Institutions (MEIs). The objective is to increase the number of collaborations and foster long-term between ORNL research staff and HBCU/MEI faculty members. Successful applicants will serve appointments up to 10 weeks at ORNL. Faculty must apply to posted research projects by January 10. There is no citizenship requirement — unless listed within the project posting.