Photo Illustration: Hydrogen storage of wind and solar electricity

Research Grant Power

Norwich University’s Applied Research Institutes (NUARI) won two contracts worth $1.12 million from the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC). The funding will support energy resilience education and research into Arctic microgrid power systems. Engineering faculty and students have also become involved in some aspects of the work.

“NUARI is ready to leverage our innovative and flexible team of experts in support the ERDC’s research of energy resilience and microgrid systems for future use in Arctic and other environments by the Army and the Department of Defense,” NUARI President Phil Susmann said. “This work aligns with our goal of serving the national public interest through the interdisciplinary study of critical national security issues.”

Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy has been a booster of the projects. “The importance of having a reliable energy grid in cold weather is something that every Vermonter understands,” he said. “With this project with the Army, Norwich is again at the front of designing and developing microgrids that can be relied on in cold weather conditions in the face of the forces of nature and malicious human attackers, and of teaching the next generation of students how to conceptualize and demonstrate competence in approaching these challenges.”


STRATEGIC ALLIANCE Norwich recently joined the U.S. Strategic Command’s (USSTRATCOM’s) Academic Alliance, a partnership that enables NU students to participate in the organization’s annual research conference and to apply for paid intern¬ships at USSTRATCOM’s headquarters in Omaha, Neb. The relationship also opens the door to faculty research collaborations and experiential learning opportunities for students, including war gaming exercises focused on nuclear deterrence.

“We are well positioned to make significant scholarly contributions to the alliance, especially given our role as an emerging leader in environmental security,” says Dr. Karen Hinkle, NU’s associate provost for research and chief research officer.

Army ROTC cadets rated highly during recent branching ceremonies. “Of the 50 active-duty cadets who participated, 45 received their first branch choice, marking a success rate of 90 percent,” says Col. Joel D. Newsom, Army ROTC professor of military science. “Overall, 96 percent received one of their top three choices.” The average rate nationally is 68 percent.

NU’s Army ROTC program was also named the 2020 ROTC Excellence and Mac- Arthur Award winner among the nation’s senior and junior military colleges. Newsom says the annual award recognizes the ROTC program that was the most successful in its mission to train and commission cadets.

The Peace and War Center welcomed Grazia (Grace) Scoppio, PhD, as a Fulbright Canada Research Chair in Peace and War Studies for the spring 2021 semester.

Scoppio is a professor in the Department of Defense Studies at the Royal Military College of Canada with cross-appointments at Queen’s University. Her current research focuses on immigrants’ participation in the military from an international perspective.

“We are fortunate to have the opportunity to work with and learn from Dr. Scoppio,” Peace and War Center Director Prof. Travis Morris says. “She brings a wealth of expertise and knowl-edge to Norwich University. Our partnership with Fulbright Canada has been an enriching experience for Norwich over the past six years, and we look for¬ward to our collaboration with Dr. Scoppio while she is with us this spring.”

A student organization dedicated to beef jerky was the largest and fastest-growing student club last semester. Club president Thomas Walsh told writer Juliet Sear ’21 of the Norwich Guidon student newspaper that a gift of beef jerky inspired him to share the snack as a way to lift spirits during the pandemic. Many rooks gobbled up the chance to chill, talk, and munch. “It’s about building morale on campus and making sure everyone has a good time during the era of COVID,” Walsh said.

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