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Message from Vice President of University Partnerships Arlene Garrison

Dr. Arlene Garrison

Dr. Arlene A. Garrison

It is my honor to serve as the vice president of University Partnerships for ORAU. We are committed to building strong partnerships with our member institutions and our federal and private partners through clear, open communication, and mutually beneficial collaborations.


Fundamental to any good partnership is clear, two-way communication. As the ORAU councilor for your university, you have a central role in helping us create a consistent dialogue in which I hope we’ll be sharing information with each other. We have streamlined our communication processes to assist you in identifying the best audiences at your university for our messages. Through the listserv and this “members-only” section of ORAU’s website, our office will communicate ORAU information and opportunities to you. The new standard format clarifies those items that are unique opportunities limited to ORAU Consortium institutions and those that contain information that can be broadly disseminated. We have tried to create a consistent format in all of our communication methods to allow you to set-up forwarding rules for our email communication.

What’s in it for you

As you know, ORAU has a strong, 60-year history of connecting university researchers with ORNL, and recent partnerships with other federal and private partners have resulted in greatly expanded possibilities. I will communicate to you over time what those expanded possibilities are and will also be bringing you up to speed on other ORAU grants and awards, special funding opportunities available only to consortium institutions, special relationship/ partnering opportunities for you, and ORAU advocacy efforts for national policies that support scientific research and education.

Many informational items you will receive from our office will describe other competitions, such as internships and postdoctoral opportunities that are open to all U.S. institutions. ORAU institutions are familiar with these programs and have been very competitive. Historically, the close connection with our University Partnerships Office has resulted in significant success for our partner institutions in open programs managed by other ORAU program offices.

In addition to communication from our office, the ORAU careers site provides a wealth of information. It is a gateway to exciting permanent employment positions, and a portal to scholarship, fellowship, and internship opportunities for students, postdocs and faculty. We suggest you make these links available to interested persons at your university. We will not routinely provide notice when new positions are posted; however, in special situations, we may request Councilor assistance in disseminating information about particular events or deadlines. 

How can you help us?

Over the past two years we have made personal visits to almost all of our member colleges and universities in an effort to learn where they have invested in building competencies, what major funding sources they are interested in, and what kind of partnerships they are interested in pursuing. As we have talked with various school leaders and faculty members, we have learned what you expect from ORAU and the value it offers your university. All of this information will help us better serve you and build fruitful relationships with all of our members.

We welcome your comments regarding our programs and especially about our University Partnerships section of the ORAU website. We hope you’ll visit often to learn more about opportunities and information pertinent to your institution.

We’re excited to work with you

Thank you for your hard work connecting faculty and students to ORAU. We’re excited about building stronger partnerships with you.