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ORAU Welcomes Two New Universities to Consortium

April 22, 2005

OAK RIDGE, Tenn.—Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU) welcomed two universities to its consortium at the 60th annual meeting of the ORAU Council of Sponsoring Institutions held recently in Washington, D.C.

The University of Cincinnati joins the consortium as a sponsoring institution, while Western Carolina University joins as an associate member. With these additions, ORAU now has 91 sponsoring institutions and 11 associate members, which are found in 27 states as well as the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and London. Consortium members take part in ORAU-sponsored or administered scientific research programs. Faculty and students at member institutions also benefit from opportunities for travel grants, internships and laboratory research at federal facilities.

“These two newest member institutions represent the kind of diversity that has come to characterize our consortium,” ORAU President Ron Townsend said. “From the large, urban environment of the University of Cincinnati to the growing campus in the hills of North Carolina of Western Carolina University, ORAU draws tremendous strength from the broad range of assets of our members. We are delighted to have these new members and look forward to their contributions.”

Founded in 1819, the University of Cincinnati has a rich history of research that has directly impacted society in positive ways including development of the oral polio vaccine, introduction of the first, safe, anti-knock gasoline, and discovery of the first antihistamine. The university’s current enrollment of 33,823 includes more than 5,000 graduate and professional students. The school’s College of Engineering is also ranked in the top 100 nationally among schools with doctoral programs in engineering.

“It is an honor for our scientists and research staff to join with such eminent colleagues in the consortium,” said Sandra J. Degen, Ph.D., acting vice president for research at the University of Cincinnati. "It is wonderful to be able to partner with the outstanding skills and capabilities of the member institutions in the quest to improve the health of the nation and advance our many scientific endeavors.”

Located in Cullowhee, N.C., Western Carolina University was founded in 1889 and is one of only five National Merit sponsoring institutions in the state. The campus, which is home to more than 6,000 undergraduates and 2,000 graduate students, is currently undergoing a $150 million renovation.

“Western Carolina University welcomes the opportunity to join Oak Ridge Associated Universities. Our faculty and staff are looking forward to collaborating with the eminent researchers and scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and with colleagues at member institutions,” Western Chancellor John W. Bardo said. "At Western, we are deeply committed to the process of engaging the university's resources to help solve economic and other problems our region and state are facing. The partnerships made possible though ORAU will enhance our ability to find solutions to those economic and social hardships.”

ORAU provides innovative scientific and technical solutions to advance national priorities in science, education, security and health. Through specialized teams of experts, unique laboratory capabilities and access to a consortium of more than 100 major Ph.D.-granting institutions, ORAU works with federal, state, local and commercial customers to advance national priorities and serve the public interest. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation and federal contractor, ORAU manages the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

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