Idaho National Laboratory is formalizing its partnership with Shoshone-Bannock School District #537, which serves students within the boundaries of the Fort Hall Reservation, to enhance educational and career technical job opportunities for tribal students.
Later this month, representatives from the school district and INL’s main contractor, Battelle Energy Alliance, will sign a memorandum of understanding to collaborate and facilitate a career technical education and job placement program for students within the district. Both sides will commit to creating workforce pipelines and building a program that leads to employment opportunities after students have completed post-secondary school. The program will also directly create opportunities for scholarships, internships and career pathways for tribal students at INL.
Specific objectives of the memorandum include the laboratory’s support as the district works to have its junior and senior high school designated by the state of Idaho as a STEM school, including access to INL experts as the district develops its STEM curriculum and training. INL also will create work-based learning opportunities for tribal students at INL, including six-week apprenticeships and on-site internships for 11th- and 12th-grade students. Additionally, the memorandum creates pathways for the district and INL to share technology, equipment and working spaces, and facilitates staff exchanges between the groups.
The memorandum is intended to signify a long-term collaboration, having no specified end date. Milestones and deliverables have been established to determine progress, with key check points toward a return on investment within the first three years.
The MOU signing ceremony will take place on Tuesday, June 22, in the Shoshone-Bannock Jr./Sr. High School Auditorium at 6 p.m. The event will be open to the public. Battelle Energy Alliance will be represented at the signing by Laboratory Director John Wagner, Deputy Laboratory Director Juan Alvarez and K-12 Education Program Director Jennifer Jackson. Shoshone-Bannock Tribes’ Fort Hall Business Council Chairman Devon Boyer, Shoshone-Bannock School District Chairwoman Becki Ingawanup and Superintendent Jonathan Braack will represent the school board.
The Fort Hall Reservation has a mask mandate in place. Anyone planning to attend will be required to wear a face mask while inside the school.